Book Coaching

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Books are the way to the soul. The words you write and the stories you tell touch hearts and transform lives.

— Janet Groom (Author & Book Coach)

Over the past few months, as I finally step up to become more visible in my capacity as a BOOK COACH, I have been asked ‘What is Book Coaching?’

Therefore, I felt I would answer the question and explain more about book coaching and my role in empowering amazing people to share their stories and bring uplifting and inspirational books into the world.

Before I get into the ins and outs of book coaching, I want to start by explaining how and why I found my way to this role, so that you understand it is much more a passion and I am driven to do this work, with a big vision in mind.

My love of books started back in my childhood growing up in the midst of ‘The Troubles’ in Northern Ireland. As a highly sensitive child, I struggled with what was going on around me. All the bitterness, hatred and killing were too much — books were my way to cope. I escaped into my imagination, enjoying adventures in new fantasy worlds with incredible characters. Books saved me.

Later in my mid-20s, I was hit with the trauma of being diagnosed with early menopause. This rocked the very foundations of my dreams and aspirations. With no support offered to help me deal with such a monumental blow, I coped, the only way I could at the time, by shutting down my emotions to numb the pain. This went on for decades until the emotional dam burst. I was forced to face and accept the reality. It was the catalyst in my own transformation and healing journey. And, once again, books and words played a pivotal role in my healing process.

Eventually, through years of healing, I found my way to writing my first fiction novel (The Naked Knitting Club). Becoming a published author was something I had dreamed of doing since childhood. The muse delivered a great book idea and it stayed with me for over 15 years until I was ready to write it, when I did give myself permission to sit down and write the book, it was liberating.

My creativity flowed and I found my voice. I found a way to express myself through the words I wrote. Even though it was a fiction book, I was able to use it to transform my pain and promote further healing.

Writing is a powerful healing tool

Writing is deeply healing for me, and I felt compelled to share my learnings, which led me to pen my first non-fiction book ‘WRITE to Heal: 10 Ways to Use Writing and Powers to Boost Your Well-Being and Transform Your Life’. An easy-to-use guide of practical exercises to use writing and words in the healing process. Simple, yet highly effective, techniques — boosting well-being and transforming lives in a powerful and positive way.

It was after this I realised my BIG VISION.

I feel a strong desire to share the incredible power of writing with others, and to encourage amazing HEART-LED ENTREPRENEURS to share their own AUTHENTIC VOICE with the world to inspire and spread JOY.

Books, filled with your stories and words, are an incredible way to share your message and touch the hearts of readers across the world.

IMAGINE YOUR AUTHENTIC VOICE,
YOUR TRUTH,
IGNITING THE FLAME OF INSPIRATION
AND JOY IN HEARTS WORLDWIDE.

Write Your Book and Spread Joy

How can a BOOK COACH help you?

Using a plethora of skills gathered over a lifetime, I am here to support YOU on your author journey, making it an experience filled with EASE, FUN, OPENNESS and CREATIVE JOY.

I serve my Author-preneur clients with INTEGRITY, CREATIVITY and JOY, in the following ways:

Accountability

We work together to create an action plan, breaking the project down into digestible chunks. You set the goals and we have regular calls giving you deadlines to work towards. As a former project manager, I know how overwhelming a project may seem, and how with the right approach it becomes easily achievable.

Structure

In the planning stage we brainstorm your book idea and together create a plan and structure outline for you to work on. This is the ‘backbone’ of your book, which we then build on. This is a key stage of writing your book and good planning creates a solid foundation on which to work.

Feedback

Open and honest feedback is a valuable tool in the creative process. You have a sounding board to bounce ideas off, and you receive feedback on your writing, including editorial input to improve the delivery and flow of your message.

Mindset & Motivation

Ask any writer and you will hear how ‘self-doubt’ can often lead to inaction and that dreaded ‘writer’s block’. With my background as an NLP and Transformational Coach, I have great tools to assist you in building a confident writer’s mindset and keeping the creative flow open.

Technical Expertise

Having experience of publishing several books, and working with an Independent Publishing House, you have the value of my experience to ensure you are aware of all the ‘little details’ you need to consider when compiling a book to publish. You also have access to an amazing editing and publishing team to remove frustration and allow you to bring a professionally produced book into the world. Additional marketing strategy ideas are offered to promote your book and your visibility as an expert in your niche.

AS A BOOK COACH, I EMPOWER ENTREPRENEURS
TO CREATIVELY EXPRESS THEIR AUTHENTIC VOICE,
INSPIRE JOY AND GAIN FINANCIAL FREEDOM.

Writing a book is a powerful journey for the author and when the book is written in the right way with the right energy, that comes across to the reader. It is a valuable tool to connect with people on a more profound level.

Are YOU Ready to boost your business with a book? 
Let’s have a cuppa and a chat



Tune into The WRITE Word Show and listen to great interviews with authors who have published their inspirational books into the world, and get excited to step up and join them… THE WRITE WORD SHOW

Powerful Intentions

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I dream of a life filled with love and laughter, with no stresses or money worries; where my life is an endless joy of good health, travels and inspiration.

— Janet Groom

OK, how many of us dream of winning a mega-win on the Lottery? How many of the authors amongst us dream of writing a bestselling book and earning millions from a Hollywood movie deal? I know that I do, and I know that I am not alone.

Dreams sustain us through the hum-drum of our daily lives. Allowing ourselves to tap into our imagination and for a moment, see what our lives would be like ‘What if’…

Law of Attraction

Some of you reading this may also be familiar with the Laws of Attraction and take steps to manifest your dreams into the real world. And many others will work harder and harder, longer and longer to achieve their self-imposed goals.

Make a Wish

If you still struggle to create a life you feel you deserve, then I suggest that you try out tapping into the power of INTENTIONS. And right now, at the NEW MOON, an auspicious time to plant those seeds of desire.

Nine Steps to Setting Your Intentions

In my book ‘Write to Heal: 10 Ways to Use Writing and Words to Boost Your Well-being and Transform Your Life’, I introduce the concept of setting Intentions in Chapter 6 – Intentions and Desires. In the chapter, I share my NINE STEPS on HOW TO SET INTENTIONS. This is a process I follow, and I am pleased to say have worked well for me, and I wanted to share them with you. I’m not going to go through the steps here, and invite you to purchase the book, but if you don’t wish to do so, then I am happy to share a PDF to download with the steps (

When you discover the ‘magic’ in setting POWERFUL INTENTIONS, your life will never be the same again.


FREE – 9 Step Guide to Setting Your Intentions


Grab a copy of ‘Write to Heal: 10 Ways to use Writing and Words to Boost Your Well-being and Transform Your Life’ by Janet Groom — available to buy on AMAZON

Write to Heal

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Pick up your pen and open your heart.
Allow the emotions to spill forth, 
and unburden your Soul. 
Safe in the knowledge 
that there will come a point when
the pain will start to heal.
You will feel reborn.

– Janet Groom

I was inspired to write the book ‘Write to Heal: 10 Ways to use Writing and Words to Boost Your Well-being and Transform Your Life’ as I do the work to clear each layer on my own healing journey. It explores my insights and conclusions of what works for me, as well as techniques which have proved useful for many of my transformational life coaching clients too.

3d Write to Heal book

Life has certainly had its ups and downs on my rollercoaster journey, and to many viewing my life from the outside, I look to be enjoying a privileged life living between a typical Swiss chalet in the breath-taking snow-capped Alps, and the UK. I have now written several books. I have travelled extensively, including having lived now in four different parts of the world. To many, my life looks charmed, if not ‘perfect’ with my loving husband and best-friend at my side. 

However, much the picture looks rosy, there is a dark side to my life, and if you knew the half of what has taken place, you would be shocked by what challenges life has thrown in my path. When people find out, they don’t quite believe me, and when they realise I am telling the truth, they are surprised at my ‘normality’ and praise my strength of character. 

Finding My Way Back

In the book, I talk about these life obstacles and how they caused me to shut-down and survive the daily routine of life in a ‘zombie-like’ state. My heart was ‘walled up’ to prevent the pain from surging through as my heart was on the verge of eruption with all the pent up emotional anguish. I chose numbness over, allowing my feelings to override me. I decided to enter ‘survival mode’ to get through each day.

Some of you may relate to this, but I will warn you at some stage, perhaps not today or tomorrow, the dam will burst, and all those emotions will pour forth — and indeed this is what happened to me after several decades of keeping it all in check. The day came, and my world imploded. The searing pain raced through my mind and body, and I spiralled into a deep dark depression. 

With loving support from my husband, along with medication, and my strong will to survive — I managed to crawl my way back to the ‘light’. It was a dark, lonely and scary place, and I never want to go there again.

For a long time, I teetered on the edge of the abyss, and when my equilibrium was rocked, I could feel the pull and spiralling starting. It was at this time; I realised I needed to find my own way to keep myself safe. To find techniques to boost my mental well-being and shift from negative thinking. 

What followed was a period of research and study. I explored and learned amazing new techniques and modalities. I found my way to NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming), Hypnosis, Meditation, Life Coaching and Energy Healing. I love the way that NLP focusses on the words we use and ways to shift our thinking by reprogramming our unconscious mind. Hypnosis and Meditations allowed my body to relax and find a way back to balance, while Life Coaching supported me to look forward to planning out the life I desired, and Energy Healing connected me to a new way of thinking about the energy in my body and how I was using, or in my case abusing, it.

Time to Change and Time to Write

This new learning formed the foundation of my healing journey, but in reality, it all came together when I wrote my first fiction novel (‘The Naked Knitting Club’); and was the real turning point in my journey. By permitting myself to write, I allowed myself to step into my creativity, and this was powerful.

Writing, in many shapes and forms, has always been with me throughout my childhood to now. I love words and now see their importance in our lives. Our words shape us. I believe in the Power of Words, and know through NLP how important it is the words we use and the beliefs we form.

In my book ‘Write to Heal’ I share ten ways that writing helped me on my healing journey, and techniques I still use today. I am a ‘Work-in-Progress’, and slowly, I am healing, layer by layer. Each step of the journey makes me feel freer and lighter as the burden of pain and suffering eases.

I wrote this book to share my insights and learnings with the world, in the hope that it will support other people on their own healing journey and bring them, step-by-step, to transforming their own lives to enjoy a happier and more joyful life.

My mission, and wish, is to provide some simple and easy to use tools for others to overcome and heal their own pain and suffering.


Life is a Train Ride

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Life is a Journey – a rollercoaster ride from birth to death, from the cradle to the grave; this is the reality of our human experience. 

– Janet Groom

For some, that journey is relatively straightforward, as they meander along in a cocoon of contentment; for others it is a hectic and chaotic ride, bouncing from one drama to the next, interlaced with a few stolen moments of tranquillity. Most of us are somewhere in-between with periods of calm sailing, interspersed with jolts of stormy seas, with occasional frantic bursts of swimming against the current trying to get back to a safe harbour we have long left behind.

Oh, yes, life is a journey, and I was reminded this as I rode the train today, and it struck me how a simple train ride is comparable with life’s journey.

OK, here I go trying to capture in words my thoughts and insights, based on my experience and observations.

Where do you get onboard?

I boarded the train at my start station, and how did I know where to start? Well, it was a case of choosing the nearest train station to my home. Simple and easy — it didn’t take any significant consideration. And this is like birth; we are born. Do we choose the ‘station’ where we are born? Some would say that we do, or perhaps we jump on at the nearest station to our home without too much thought.

Now, I should, of course, mention that which train you alight depends on where you want to go. Most of us have in mind a destianation of where we wish to travel to, that is not to say that some people just love jumping on a train without any plan and are quite happy to end up where they end up — the majority of us don’t, we need to know where we are going.

Where Do You Choose to Seat?

From my chosen seat, I watch the world go by as the train travels forward along the tracks towards my destination. I enjoy watching the world rush towards me with stunning views overlooking Lake Zurich (I admit I did choose to sit to the left, as I knew it had preferential views of the lake). It is an enjoyable and pleasurable experience and it makes me smile.

Now, as for my fellow passengers, I can only assume they had varying experiences — some watched the world fly by looking out the window on the other side of the carriage; others looked back at the views passing behind us, and those upstairs enjoy the advantage of a slightly higher elevation over the rooftops. And then there were a few passengers heads bent over their phones or buried in a book, oblivious to the scenes unfolding, lost in the depths of their own self-absorbed worlds.

As the train trundles along the tracks heading to a pre-defined destination, which helpfully is displayed on the noticeboard at the end of each carriage, we are notified of the stations along the way along with an announcement of the next upcoming scheduled to stop.

Do You Stay On or Get Off?

I watch as some people get off at these stations with a sense of purpose, while new passengers clamber aboard and take up residence in the recently vacated seats.

With interest, I realise that I could choose to alight at any of the stations along the way. It is within my control. However, I know where I wanted to go. I have already decided upon my end destination. I was clear on where I wanted to go and where my particular journey would end. Between watching the array of shops, houses, gardens and streets appear before me, I listened and as my journey neared it’s end, I was ready and had my belongings at hand when we pulled up and joined the myriad of travellers to getting off.

Life is like a Train Ride

Life is like my train journey, we get on the train of life and some of us where we are going, some go so far and change train, some have no clue and just stay onboard afraid to miss their stop, and others are free spirits getting on and off as they feel inclined to do so. Depending on where we wish to go some may chose the slower, scenic route and enjoy the luxury of the views along the way, while others may select the ultra-fast trains, with a view to get there as fast as they can.

Even choosing the same train journey, each person will have their own unique experience on-board. Everyone’s perspective will be different depending on their position and how engaged they are in looking out the window, watching the antics of other passengers, or burying their head in the distraction of their choosing.

As a writer, travelling, even a short train ride, can inspire my creative side. Sometimes, I watch the passing view, and other times I ‘people watch’ and occasionally I bury my head in a book or entertain myself with my iPhone.

Life is a Journey

Life is a journey, and we are all having a different experience as we are all unique and even on the same ‘train heading to the same destination’ — our choices and perspectives will ensure none of us has the identical ride, and that’s what makes life’s journey special.

There is no right or wrong journey, it is up to you and all you need to do is sit back and enjoy it. Some people will and some people won’t — it is up to you!

Relax and enjoy your life’s train ride, it can be a pretty amazing adventure if you allow it!

Writer’s Doubt

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We all know about, or at the very least, have heard about ‘Writer’s Block’, but have you heard of ‘Writer’s Doubt’?

In my capacity as host of The WRITE Word Show, I am honoured to interview and chat with a range of writers and authors from across the globe. People who have followed their deep-seated yearning to write their book. They have stepped up to the commitment, knuckled-down and dug-deep to weave stories to share with the World at large. Books to inspire, personal insights and wisdom to share, or a tall tale of mystery, intrigue or adventure. But one thing that crops up time and time again, when my incredible guests share their own writing journey, is their wrangle with self-doubt as an author.

So many people talk of writing a book, and not so many manage to realize this great dream.

It is not only a calling, but it takes discipline, determination and diligence to sit down and do the work. Create a book, whether it is a shorter non-fiction or novella, of a full-blown fictional heavy-weight — it takes time to craft the message, to give form to the characters, to concisely pull the parts together to provide the reader with a journey of learning or a story to transport them to another time and place.

Writing a book is a challenge.

A challenge to which many will not rise, and those who do, show great courage and fortitude of character.

When you ask many authors, they will tell you that writing the book is a journey — one of weeks, months or even years. It may have been fraught with periods of frustration when the ‘Muse’ takes her leave of absence. Perhaps it was cobbled together with stolen moments amid the demands of a hectic schedule; squeezed into the cacophony of life. Or, maybe, there is the luxury of time to bring ‘form’ to the symphony of words. 

Every writer’s journey is their own unique experience.

However, ask many authors about their experience when the book is ‘birthed’ into the big bad World, most will own up to feeling overwhelming waves of emotions. Emotions that oscillate from abject fear to exhilaration; from pride in their accomplishment to a crippling doubt.

It is the vulnerability of opening the doors to judgement and critique. 

Hours, days, years even of heart-wrenching work laid bare for all to scrutinize. For many authors, it may well have been a work of blood, sweat and many tears. Writing a book is such an emotional experience, which many liken to a pregnancy.  The book is nurtured, developed and fiercely protected in the gestation period. Then, when it is ‘birthed’, there is a rush of satisfaction, followed by panic as doubts flood in.

I know this only too well, as I am one of those authors who rode this emotional rollercoaster when my first book was released (‘The Naked Knitting Club’). And, I know, that I am not the only one. It is something which plagues most writers.

Does it get easier with each book you publish?

For some it does, and for many others, it does not. We bravely bare our souls and await feedback from our readers. We re-read and find fault in our work. We are our own worst critic — harsh and nit-picking to the nth degree, with the perfectionist afoot as we beat ourselves up. Having support at hand, someone who helps you to see the truth of your accomplishment, is a must for any writer — your personal ‘cheerleader’ to coach you through the wobbly bits.

As much as I, for one, would wish to release emotional bonds with my book babies, I know that my doubts are all part of the author experience for me. I accept that nothing is perfect, and by accepting the imperfections, I am honing my craft. Each book I write is an opportunity for progression and improvement. I must also acknowledge that each book its unique mission, and I am merely the conduit, the channel, for the message or story to be born.

‘Author’s Doubts’ are part of the journey and must be recognized for what they are. Be aware of them, and release them before starting your next book journey. If we waited until every word, every sentence and every comma was perfect; we would be denying the World. Imagine how many great literary masterpieces would never have graced our bookshelves if the authors had held them back waiting for perfection — that would be a tragedy.

So, dear writer/author take heart and enjoy the ride, as your path may be a little uncomfortable at times when the ‘doubt demons’ strike, but know that it is worth it, and the World will be a better place because you have pushed through the pain and discomfort to share your book baby.

The World needs you to step up, push your doubts aside and keep writing your books.

The Power of Storybooks

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I love storybooks.

‘What? Are you for real? No way!’ I hear you say, a child loves storybooks, not a grown woman in her 50s… this one does, and here’s why.

As children, many of us adored books. We loved being tucked up in bed listening to our favourite storybook. Perhaps you see this with your own children. They know the story inside-out, and yet they keep asking for the same one again and again. You see their little eyes light up in glee and the joy it brings them. Eventually, they fall asleep in the warm glow from a good story with a happy ending.

We also have a child within us, and that child still loves a ‘feel good’ story. It adores a story that ends in a positive way — the downtrodden underdog wins through and becomes a hero; the good fairy beats the evil witch; and a kind-hearted soul saves the poor injured creature from a fate worse than death.

The fundamental outcome is that ‘good’ vanquishes the ‘bad’; the story many of us wish to buy into. We believe, that even though we don’t feel like a hero today in the throes of our ordinary mundane lives, we will, when the Universe conspires, don our superhero cape and stand up for what is right and good. The world loves a hero, the world will love us.

Think about it — we, as human beings, love success stories. It is part of our DNA. It is the yearning of our unconscious mind. It is our desire to see ‘good’ become victorious, at the end of the day. We connect with the ‘hero’s journey’, and this is the plot structure used in many of great fiction novels of all time, to the latest blockbuster movies on our screens.

Studying NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) a few years ago, I learned about the power of the unconscious mind in many aspects of our lives. I also learned that it is the ‘control system’ for our fears, our thoughts, our emotions and our behaviours. But the good news is that our unconscious mind may be re-programmed, facilitating change. And one unexpected but powerful tool to aid this transformation is a STORY.

Like our inner child, our unconscious mind loves to listen to a tale. It will tune in and pays attention, enthralled, drinking in the adventure, the challenges and the final win — just like the child listening to the bedtime story.

Perhaps this is a key reason why hypnosis often proves to be a successful modality to shift behaviour. Hypnosis allows the client to enter a relaxed state (by the way the client is always in control). They allow their mind and body to relax, opening the gateway for the therapist to suggest the positive message to the unconscious mind. A seed is planted in the guise of a story, and the unconscious mind takes it in. Then with the right nurturing, like any seed, it will take root and begin to grow. With continued care, it will grow stronger, and the desired change will take effect. As long as the message within the story is consistent, and the unconscious mind is kept interested, the change will occur.

Stories are so important.

We tell ourselves stories about ourselves and who we are most, if not all, of the time. Now, most of us, particularly women, are good at putting ourselves down. We can so quickly identify ourselves as not good enough, not slim enough, not pretty enough. Guess what? Behind the scenes, your unconscious mind is taking this on board.

Isn’t it time to change your story?

Are you aware that some of the stories you tell yourself are disempowering?

Stop! Change your mind talk, as unfortunately your unconscious mind is listening and it is keeping you small and unable to reach your potential.

Perhaps it is time to make changes. Perhaps it is time to change your stories and change your life for the better.

A tip from me: ‘I choose to read stories and books that resonant with me and have the positive outcome I am seeking. They may be non-fiction or fiction. It really doesn’t matter, as long as I, and my unconscious mind, are engaged and the underlying message matches the shift I wish to effect.

Books are stories, and the right stories are inspirational, motivational and encouraging.

They share a message of hope, they inspire courage; they build dreams — and may create amazing people and great leaders along the way. (Some leadership books written in the early 1900s are still influential and positive game-changers today because their underlying story still has validity even in today’s modern world.)

Now you know why storybooks are so crucial in my life?

Are you ready to dive in and use the power of storybooks to change your mind stories?

Mindful Writing

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The Art of Feeling What You Write

Everywhere we look we see that we should be MINDFUL in our lives — Mindful breathing, mindful eating, mindful about our emotions. All great advice, in my humble opinion.

Our modern lives are so overloaded with noise, demands, information and activities. We race from one thing to another in our daily routine — from school runs, to lunch at our desks, to cramming in meeting with friends. Rushing around with hardly a moment to breath is the new norm. We are at the behest of our mobile devices, grabbing our phones at every available moment to check social media, news and updates. We are, or at the very least becoming puppets, to technology and life. The constant sensory and information overload has left many of us numb.

So MINDFULNESS is a crucial step for us, as human beings, to take back control. To learn to reconnect with who we are. Learn to breathe again and check in with how we feel. Feelings are an essential part of who we are. When you understand how we FEEL about something, you know whether or not it is good for us. Over the years, in my capacity of a Transformational Life Coach, I have been constantly surprised to hear clients says that they do not know what was good for them. Their rigorous lives have worn them down to a shell of who they really ought to be.

Be Mindful and Breathe

So what does MINDFULNESS have to do with writing? I hear you ask?

As a writer, I have learned to bring my coaching techniques into the mix to support my writing, and with great success. I have learned the importance of giving myself permission to write and be comfortable with the label ‘author’. I know that setting intentions for my writing works for me. And, importantly, I have come to the powerful realisation that being MINDFUL when I write is a major contributor to keeping the dreaded ‘writer’s block’ at bay.

Being MINDFUL as I write is a positive experience for me. I sit down to write and do my little ritual to allow the creative flow. Through a short meditation, I breathe, relax and invite the muse to be with me as I write. 

As I write the words, I take a moment to feel into the words I am using and connect with them. How do they FEEL? How do they SOUND?  How do they LOOK on the page? I feel connected with the words as they take form.

When I read through what I have written, I check-in and ask myself how does that make me feel as a reader? 

When you become a MINDFUL writer, you find the writing process becomes more natural and a much more fluid process. At the same time, your reader will have a more pleasurable experience too, and that is a win-win.

To help you tune into MINDFUL WRITING, I have created a short meditation for you. Click on the image/link below to download it and use it to boost your creative writing flow in a mindful way. Enjoy!

Click here to listen to MINDFUL WRITING MEDITATION

Decluttering

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DECLUTTERING

Clearing clutter and opening the path for new energy to flow again.

“The best way to find out what we really need is to get rid of what we don’t.” 

― Marie Kondō

Get the Message

Over the past few months, my office had begun to close in around me. With the chaos of renovation works, wrapped up with the demands of the holiday period, my desk and room had become a dumping ground. There were remnants of Christmas ornaments to be put away; boxes of toiletries decanted from the bathrooms while work had been on-going, and a mass of tourist information acquired on a recent trip to Poland.

I think you get the picture.

The disarray was closing in on me, and seriously impeding my creative flow. I had hoped to start work in earnest on the sequel to my debut novel ‘The Naked Knitting Club’, but any hope of settling into writing mode was truly thwarted. To be quite honest, I could barely stand being in the room for any length of time. The mayhem was stifling my creative flow.

The idea of starting to sort it all out was overwhelming. I was like the proverbial deer caught in headlights, too paralysed to take action.

Anyway, my dear husband had to come into my room to resolve a computer issue for me (he only has to turn up and look at the computer, and it works for him – I may have completed the same steps to resolve the issue, it, of course, doesn’t work for me but for him straight-away… Go figure!) So, he is sitting at my desk and looks around in disbelief at the piles of papers and unimaginable clutter, and says “I think we need to get this sorted.” And with that, he set about re-organising my laptop, screen and keyboard. He then grabbed a duster and polish and even cleaned my desk. 

I received the message loud and clear – ‘Janet, get your sh*t sorted!

Get Organised

Time to act. Armed with a couple of black bin bags, I attacked each section of the room – from the bookshelf to my overflowing cupboard; not forgetting the piles of papers, notebooks and pens on my desk.

Now, I don’t know about you, but my books are like my children. I find it extremely hard to let them go. However, I need to make space and clear out the ones I’ve read (paperbacks), meaning I had to adopt a ruthless streak to weed out the books that have served their purpose and admit it was time for them to be passed on. 

At the same time, I set about creating some semblance of order to the books: non-fiction self-help/development/spiritual on one row, fiction on a separate row, and writing-related on another. Now it looks much better, and books are much easier to find.

Let It All Go

I will admit that I am a ‘learner for life’ – I love talking courses and programs to develop my knowledge and expertise in topics that are of interest to me. I have folder upon folder of course notes. A few have followed me around from as far back as 2004. 

If it was hard for me to let go of the books I’ve read (and unlikely to re-read), it is a struggle to part with my beloved course notes. There again, I had to ask myself, in all the time I’ve kept them, how many times have I referred back to them. Good question, as this eased the process of deciding which ones to keep and which ones could be binned (see the quote at the beginning by Marie Kondō, a Japanese decluttering goddess).

The next prong of attack was the serious stacks of notebooks. As a writer, I love writing in a lovely new notebook – it is a guilty pleasure! (I know there are a few readers who understand and feel the same). I am the person who purchases a lovely new notebook for every new project or idea. I don’t need much of an excuse.

Hence, the reason why the stack is quite substantial (over twenty), with many only having a few pages used. I decided to rip out the used pages and keep the notebook to re-use (proud of myself for being so thrifty). The ripped-out pages are swallowed up by the black sacks, and the revived notebooks are placed together where I can quickly grab one when I need it.

Decluttering is Good for the Soul

It has been a full-blown clear-out, and by the time I finally finished I had two bags full of papers to dispose of, a box of folders to be stored (the ones I’m not quite really to let go), and a box of pre-loved books ready to find new homes.

Once again, I can sit at my desk and find what I need within easy reach, and it feels good. My hubby popped in, and he couldn’t believe the difference. There are still a few little jobs to be finalised, and then it will be ‘ship shape’, and I am ready and raring to go. It has been a liberating experience, and one I intend to do on a more regular basis.

I have been recently reading a book about the Japanese ‘wabi sabi’ (Wabi Sabi by Beth Kempton). A lovely book that talks about how the Japanese have a tradition about only choosing to surround themselves with a few carefully selected things that speak to their heart. Traditional Japanese homes are minimalistic with a feeling of calm, allowing energy to flow. This concept appeals to me, and I must be more meticulous about any future purchases and checking in with my heart first, asking myself two questions: ‘Do I need it? Do I love it?’.

Waste Not, Want Not

I realise that many of us live in a world where we buy more than we need, and this continual purchasing ends up with us becoming overwhelmed by ‘our stuff’. I know this is a ‘first world’ problem, but we need to consider the consequences of our actions. 

Our world is already suffering from the amount of waste we produce. It has been a stark reminder to me only to buy what I need, and perhaps for birthdays and Christmas, I could ask people to donate to worthwhile causes instead of accumulating gifts that I don’t need. 

“Owning less is better than organizing more.” 

― Joshua Becker, Clutterfree with Kids

If you are feeling overwhelmed and closed-in by ‘your stuff’, I thoroughly recommend setting aside the time to tackle the issue one-room at a time, and if that’s too much, do a cupboard or a bookshelf at a time. Start today and you will soon finish.

Clutterfree Space – Fresh and Calm

Liberate yourself and bring calm back into your space. Allow the energy to flow again.
Declutter your space, declutter your mind. It is a ‘spa treatment’ for your Soul.

2019 – INTENTIONS

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Make 2019 Your Year to Sparkle & Shine by Tuning into Self-Care, Self-Compassion and Self-Love

“The greatest gift you can give yourself is the gift of self-love.”

– Janet Groom

Time to Sparkle & Shine

New Year, New Me!

OK, it starts the same way every year, but this year I am determined to bring in the changes I long for. Enough — feeling sorry for myself. Enough — not caring about myself. Enough — making lame excuses.

This is the year I am digging deep to flick the switch in my head and make the changes happen.

I know what I need to do. It’s not rocket science, I need to WANT to make the changes from deep within — in fact, my Soul yearns for it. It wants to be free from the shackles of the emotional baggage I drag around. It desires to be lighter to shine brighter and revel in the waves of joy life brings my way. It wishes to fly and soar, as free as a bird. And I am the only one who can make it happen.

So, this New Year is not starting with resolutions which invariably fall flat at the first hurdle, but with powerful clear INTENTIONS being set, with my head and heart aligned with a deep sense of conviction –now this is the time!

Intentions

I prefer now to set INTENTIONS, previously it was goals.

Intentions make me feel better. They are like strong wishes made by my Soul, with my head and heart onboard. Goals feel heavy and burdensome, whereas Intentions feel lighter, like butterflies surrounded with love and light, and this means they are easier for me to be drawn to — they appeal, which is a vital part of the process.

So now, I take time to tune into my desires for the year ahead and write down my intentions. I believe that writing them down helps to make them more real, like seeds being planted in the spring. These seeds are then watered with an unwavering desire to nurture them and bring them to life.

Inspired Action

Thinking about your INTENTIONS on their own is not sufficient to turn them into reality (oh, I wish it was!). It is important to consider each Intention and consider ways in which you can play your part to assist them to fruition. Let’s call this INSPIRED ACTION. That’s right you need to do something to aid the process. We need to look at ways we can do our part to help the intention develop and grow.

For example, last year I set the intention to write and publish my debut novel, an idea that sat with me some 15 years, but it only happened when I set a firm intention and did the work to turn it into a reality. On 27 November 2018, my first book ‘The Naked Knitting Club’ was released into the world.

Sitting thinking about it was not going to make it happen — I needed to take inspired action to shift it from a dream to a reality, and so it is with any intention.

Plans, Milestones and Goals

OK, I said that I don’t like goals, however they do serve a purpose as part of the inspired action. As a Transformational Coach, and former Project Manager, I know the value in planning for success when undertaking any project; along with the benefit of breaking it down into small steps.

So, once the Intention is locked in firmly in my heart, I sit down and assess what action needs to be taken, and then break it down to smaller, more easily achieved steps. I’m afraid there is no magic wand here, it is all down to doing the work and putting in the right energy to get those wonderful results.

I start with working out what is my desired end result, and then plan out the steps (milestones/goals) to get there. A ‘start at the end and work backwards’ approach, works for me. It’s like planning a journey — you normally know where you want to go, and then you work out your preferred route to get there.

Ownership and Choices

When you set any intention, you must ensure that it is what YOU truly want. You must feel a strong desire towards it. If you are doing it because you SHOULD then it will feel heavy, like a burden weighing you down, and this will not work. CHOOSE to make changes and set intentions that FEEL right to you, because you want to achieve them.
I guess I would describe it as your heart hugging the desire with a passion that does not want to let it go — your heart becomes entwined with the desire, held in a tight lover’s embrace.

Follow Your Heart

The only one who knows what is right for you, is YOU!

Over the years, I have learnt how important it is to tune into your heart and find out what is the right thing for you. YOU are the one responsible in this life for making the right decisions and choices for your own well-being. My HEART is my internal GPS system, and I tune in to it by placing my hand on my heart (heart chakra) and asking for guidance on what is the right thing for me.

If you are not used to doing this, start doing this and make the space to listen. After all, the person who knows you the best and what is the best for you — is YOU!

Self-Care, Self-Compassion & Self-Love

Stepping into your personal empowerment, knowing what is right for you and making choices to support your grow and development, comes from SELF-LOVE.

Unfortunately, many of us lose touch with this important aspect as we are conditioned by our modern society to bend to suit the wishes of those around us. We become so out-of-touch with who we really are that we become numb to what is right for us.

To get back in tune with ourselves, we need to grow our LOVE for ourselves, and this is done through self-care and self-compassion. Learning to be kind to ourselves. Learning to put ourselves to the top of the list and do what is needed to nurture ourselves back to a place where we feel ourselves again.

SELF-LOVE is the key to our personal success and happiness in life. By re-focussing on ourselves and boosting our own energy, health, happiness and well-being; we are then able to serve those whom we care about in a healthier way.

Write, Read, Believe, Achieve

I WRITE out my INTENTIONS to set them and allow my head and heart to get onboard and align with passion and drive.

I READ my INTENTIONS regularly (daily is ideal) to keep my focus fixed on them.

I BELIEVE in my desire and unwavering truth that they are in my highest good, and that I am being supported by the Universe to succeed.

I know in my heart I can ACHIEVE the results I want, and celebrate each milestone on the journey to my heart’s desire.

Sparkle & Shine

Following my heartfelt INTENTIONS, I find that my heart opens more and more. I feel lighter and brighter, my mood and general well-being improves. I feel I RADIATE and GLOW — my inner light is shining brighter and brighter. I feel much better in myself and I am able to deal with the challenges of life easier, without spiralling down into a dark depressive state.

LIFE is for living, for loving, for enjoying — set INTENTIONS now that make your Soul sing!

Go on and make 2019 the year you 
set Intentions 
to grow your SELF-LOVE, 
tune into your Heart and 
allow yourself to
 SPARKLE & SHINE

I invite you to check out the first episode in the SELF-CARE, SELF-COMPASSION and SELF-LOVE series of interviews coming up this year on ‘The WRITE Word Show’ — a little inspiration guiding us all to tune into the benefits of SELF-LOVE and supporting us to SPARKLE & SHINE!


Top Ten Must Reads – 2018

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My favourite books of 2018 to add to your 2019 Reading List

“A book is a dream you hold in your hand.”

– Neil Gaiman

Books, Books, Books

As a writer, I am also an avid reader, although I must admit that in past commuting was my precious time to bury my head in a book and be transported to another world, or to be experiencing a different life through the eyes of someone else… it was pure magic! Now I have to make time to read, which has meant being open to reading e-books and listening to audio books, but my first love will always be a physical book in my hand.

So, here are my top book recommendations from my 2018 reading list, and it was really hard to narrow it down to my top ten!

1.  Rising Strong (by Brené Brown)

Want to know what makes for a ‘wholehearted’ life and how to weather the storms of life – then this is the book for you. Brené Brown is a researcher, who uses her data to find out the secrets to why some people fair better with life in general than others. It is about failing, getting right back up and going on. It certainly made me review my own life and how I can learn ways to shift negative patterns and adopt ways to begin living a ‘wholehearted’ and happier life.

I also listened to an audio book (Rising Strong as a Spiritual Practice) to accompany the book, which also reinforced her insights and learnings as share by the author at as live event.

2.  Recovery – Freedom from our Additions
     (by Russell Brand)

I listened to the audio book version, and I must say it was, at time hard to listen to Russell Brand drone on. However, that said, there were lots of insightful points. I don’t consider myself an addict, but there were definitely points that resonated with me. The AA 12 Step Program is also very valid to anyone who wishes to transform their lives and start to live a life of purpose. Check it out, and see what comes up for you.

3.  On Writing – A Memoir of the Craft  (by (Stephen King)

As a writer/author, this is a definite MUST READ… and so I dutiful read it. Yes, it is packed with lots of well-written anecdotal stories about Stephen King’s lengthy writing career, along with pointers on his writing style and tips.  Does it help you become a ‘bestselling’ author like Mr King? That I can’t say, but it will get you thinking about your own writing, and how you can improve it.

4.  Conversations with Me (by Caroline Palmy)

A beautifully written memoir of Caroline’s personal story to overcome the trauma and impact of divorce. I love the way it is structured with a series of questions she poses and then answers. It is open and honest, and offers the gift of ‘hope’ to anyone who is going through the same experience. Caroline proves you can get through it, and find yourself, and happiness, again.

5.  The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris (Jenny Colgan)

What’s not to love about this easy to read ‘Chick Lit’ book? It is set in Paris, a city I adore, and it has lots of chocolate in it, as well as romance. I admire her writing style and the story flowed well. Definitely a ‘feel good’ read, snuggled up on the sofa, with a cuppa and a box of chocolates at hand – perfect!

6.  Stop ‘Should-ing’ and Start Wanting (by Judith Quin)

Taking back control of your life, becoming ’empowered’ starts with your self-talk. In her debut book, Judith shares with us her story of removing the word ‘should’ from her vocabulary, and why we need to reconnect with what is right for us by ‘wanting’. Easy to read, with lots of great little exercises to do along the way too. Follow her advice and before long you will be living a life you WANT to live.

7.  This Book is Not for You (by Carole Boudreau)

A self-help book with a difference – it was written by the author for herself as a blueprint to FEEL GOOD, but she has kindly shared her learnings and practices with us. I liked Carole’s forthright style – she tells it as it is. Definitely crammed with tips for us all on how to tune in to feeling good again.

8.  Change Your Thoughts – Change Your Life 
     (by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer)

I have listened to the audio book three times now, because I love his voice… it is so calm, reassuring and makes me feel good. In the book he shares his understand and learnings from researching Tao Te Ching and how we can adopt it into our lives. I must admit it is quite long, with some 81 verses. However, if you are on a spiritual journey, then I would definitely recommend it.

9.  How to Fall in Love (by Cecelia Ahern)

Not the best book from Ms Ahern, but it was an enjoyable read, and she is on the list because she is one of my favourite authors. I love her writing style and enjoy the references to life back in Ireland (this one is set in Dublin). Her sense of humour matches my own, and this book does not disappoint on that score. It is a corny ‘chick lit’ romance, and that was just want I needed when I read it.

10.  The Naked Knitting Club (by Janet Groom)

OK, I’m biased on this one – but why not, as it’s my list!
This is my debut novel, a ‘chick lit’. The story follows the life of Cate Taylor from when she makes a New Year’s resolution, which sets her on a path of transformation and stepping outside of her comfort zone. She ends up joining a ‘naked knitting club’ and her life starts to change. There is some knitting, but mostly is about relationships, friendships and life, with a little romance sprinkled into the mix.

Let me know what your top book recommendations, as I am now planning my reading list for 2019! Happy Reading 🙂


The WRITE Word Show

Listen/watch the show episode here > https://janetgroom.com/thewritewordshow/