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The pursuit of mindful living and the 3 second kiss

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Modern Life is anything but Simple. We are in an age of expansion not seen before and doesn’t look like slowing anytime soon. We juggle multiple roles, chase our  never ending to do lists and many of us are entrapped in the web of technology as it advances and expands and intrudes into every corner of our existence, where not even the bedroom or the bathroom provide solace, anxious we’ll miss the latest blog  or txt or ‘like’. The expectation we place on ourselves and those imposed upon us  have never been greater – and the very things that may serve to help us maintain balance including solitude, down time, ordinary pleasures, connecting with nature and true connection (no device) time with family and friends are fast becoming  redundant in our over stimulated, distraction laden daily lives.

As we re-assess this relationship with our digital devices, our distraction and our  hyper stimulation, the popularity of tools and techniques to counteract and balance our life experience include traditional practices like meditation, yoga and the rapidly expanding movement of mindfulness and mindful living.

Dr Jon Kabat-Zinn, creator of The Centre for Mindfulness defines mindfulness as ‘paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgementally and ….. as if your life depended on it!’ Other definitions include ‘ a state of active,  open awareness on the present’, ‘attention to the here and now’, and of course  chiropractically ‘PTC’.

Mindfulness as opposed to a ‘state of being’ is more a ‘practice’, an ‘active’ and constant re-direction of awareness, a way of re-connecting with your life as it is,  right now in this very moment, the benefits of which include a wiser relationship with what’s going on in our lives rather than being at the effect or at the mercy of  everything going on around us including our relentless thoughts, or emotions, our  reactions and our judgements.

Traditionally the most common uses for mindfulness practice related to relaxation,  stress reduction and spiritual advancement, and was widely used in conjunction with other practices including yoga and meditation, however more recently mindfulness  practice has enjoyed increasing profile and popularity with CEO’s, in the corporate world, amongst celebrities, sporting stars and many educational institutions.

So although the benefits of practicing mindfulness are exponential including stress reduction, better mood regulation, increased immune function, happier relationships,  increased creativity, better productivity, reduced sicknesses, higher energy, lower feelings of anxiety or worry, the actual practice of mindfulness often eludes us as we rush through our days, chasing our to do lists and being entrapped by the ever  expanding distraction machine of technology. Thankfully daily mindfulness practice does not require you to remove any of these obstacles and doesn’t have to have you to sitting motionless with your eyes closed for hours at a time.

Practicing mindfulness everyday, even for just a few minutes, works so effectively because everytime you focus on paying attention, you strengthen your mind and develop the ability to increase your focus, your resilience, your ability to bounce back and you deepen and soften your connection with yourself and others. This makes for a highly effective and much happier you.

Here’s a few great techniques that have brought amazing results for others and most of them take less than a minute:


Just simply pause – Pause before you move, pause before you speak, before you eat, before you rush from one activity to the next. Pause before you lay hands on your people, pause before you take your hands away. Just pause whenever you think of it.

Where’s your tongue?

Notice where your tongue is sitting in your mouth in this moment. There is some evidence that suggests that if your tongue is jammed against the roof of your mouth,  it’s a sign that your stress system is switched on. Notice where it is and just focus on releasing it and allowing it to sit gently behind your teeth – this practice will not only  strengthen your mindfulness muscle and deepen your awareness and connection with your body, but may also cool your stress system down momentarily. And if your  tongue is sitting behind your teeth, just pause and notice it there.

Introduce Novelty

Remember the novelty of first learning to drive, or driving on the opposite side of the road, or learning a new technique, or a new job. Novelty is a great wa to increase our awareness and heighten our ‘pay attention’ focus. Introducing novelty to everyday routines are a really simple and effective way to strengthen your mindfulness muscle. Simple things like brushing your teeth with your opposite hand,  getting out of bed on the opposite side, driving a new route to work, lengthening your stride when walking or my favorite, when you hug another person, hug ‘left to left’  or heart to heart. This practice, requires greater levels of awareness and therefore strengthens your capacity for mindfulness. The benefits of which we all now know.

3 Seconds is a long time

In all my years of teaching mindfulness, there is one practice, the results of which continue to astound me and those who choose this practice. Next time you hug your partner, your children, or someone you love, pause and hold this connection for the long count of 3. This practice has been shown to be especially effective with lovers when the 3 second count is applied to the ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’ kiss. Trust me, give  it a go – I promise a deepening and softening of your connection with each other over time. And, it’s fun!

Special Event Invitation

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Make stress your friend – Meditation in a minute.

Vikki KellyI am so excited to be able to share with you one of the most effective tools for training your mind I have ever come across, The Pay Attention Effect..

I’ve been practicing, teaching and/or researching the principles and benefits of training your mind through meditation for over twenty years now, and I can guarantee this technique is by far the most effective I have come across, for myself and the thousands of people I have worked with.

So, whether you are looking to reduce your stress, increase your energy or simply explore the multiple benefits of strengthening your capacity for mindfulness and paying attention – please join me for an evening of learning, discovery and practical tools and ideas that may transform the way you choose to live, love parent and serve.

You’ll learn:

  • VIDEO 300x168 the latest science and research on mindfulness
  • 5 things you must know about your mind to reduce stress and improve your relationships and your life
  • mental sit ups and how to transform, ‘chaos to calm’, ‘fear to fun’, ‘painful to powerful’ – all in less than one minute
  • how we are endangering young minds and what we can do about it
  • ‘pay attention’ parenting tips
  • how to re-wire your brain for success, happiness and fulfillment

Two Special Nights


Tuesday 19th November 7pm
Auckland – Novatel Ellerslie. Greenlane East Rd, Greenlane


Wednesday 20th November 7pm
Pukekohe – Franklin Centre. Pukekohe Library, Pukekohe


Click here to learn more and register today.

Whether you are a seasoned meditator, someone who has dabbled and/or given up, or if you’ve never tried meditation but always wanted to …… this workshop is right for you!

To learn more click here or call 0274 317 607 to discuss your specific questions

I look forward to sharing the evening with you.

Vikki Kelly

P.S. My promise….I am so confident that you will love the information and tools explored at this event, that if, at the end of the night you don’t believe the program was of any value – I ‘promise’ a full refund of your registration fee – No questions asked!

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Wired to Wander

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Ever noticed how your mind has a tendency to just randomly wander from thought to thought, distraction to distraction. Think about it – it’s happening right now!

Our natural state, is a wandering mind, especially when we are not focused on and consciously paying attention on anything in particular. It’s called the ‘resting’ state but for the mind, it’s far from resting!

This essential function in our brain was a vital part of our evolution – scanning distractions in our environment for clues of threat or danger, important to our very survival.

Today these distractions present in the form of media, advertising, ‘stinkin thinkin’, our phones, the internet and social media to name just a few. All these things constantly demanding our mindless attention and reducing our capacity for the very powerful state of mindfulness – from paying attention to the task at hand.

Although these distractions may not pose an immediate threat to our lives, they do reduce our effectiveness across most areas of our life including our relationships, our productivity, our happiness and reduces our overall health.

Exercising your ‘pay attention’ muscle a few times a day strengthens your capacity for mindfulness and enhances your energy, improves your relationships and may even help you get that pay increase!

Try these exercises:

  • Breathe in for the count of two – pause – and breathe out for the count of four.
  • Do this breathing pattern for four or five breaths whenever you think of it.
  • Pause and notice the sounds and smells around you for one minute.
  • Relax your tongue and activate your ‘rest, digest and love’ system (parasympathetic)by pressing your tongue against the roof of your mouth and then releasing it to sit gently behind your teeth.

All of these exercises will strengthen and condition your mind to pay attention (mindfulness) – do it for a week – you may just be surprised the amazingness you begin to notice about yourself and others.

One word is all it takes

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Here we are – another year – another ‘new beginning’

Time to stop ruminating over what ‘should have been’, or rationalising why things didn’t get ticked off your 2012 list.

The future is flawless – if you haven’t already…’s time to decide how you will be showing up in 2013!

At the very least choose a theme word for 2013 – and live by it everyday

This one action alone has already brought many people outstanding results!  Learn more about ‘the one word’ principle in our upcoming tele-webinar.

Small daily revolutionary actions towards greater success and influence through the filter of your new power word – go to it!

Have you signed up for the inspired practice tele-webinar?

This months topic –

Success by design

Tuesday 12th February 11amNZDT (9am Vic/NSW – 8.30 SA) (30 minutes)

Click here to register 

If not – please join us for this FREE session, because it’s one of the best ways to help your team truly make a difference for your organisation and the people you serve.


Dorothy and her friends had it right!

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This one word is truly the elixir of willing compliance!

And…. may just be the ‘key word’ for marital bliss, perfectly compliant children, willing respondent staff, and loyal engaged customers and clients !

Social scientists Langer and Maio in a study measuring persuasive power, put one word to the test with some astounding results.

The research team had a stranger approach someone waiting in line to use a photocopier and asked if they could go before that person with no reason – just simply “ I have five copies to make, can I use the photocopier?’  – 60% of people allowed the person to go ahead.  When the stranger made the same request with a reason… ‘because I am in a rush” – compliance jumped to 94%, which may not be surprising to you.  Here’s where it got very interesting!  The stranger then made the same request but this time used a completely meaningless reason – “may I use the photocopier because I have to make copies”.  Despite this hollow reason (everyone was there to make copies after all), the compliance rate was almost the same(93%) ie nearly everyone said ‘yes’.

This study demonstrated the motivational influence of the word ‘because’.

You too can use this powerful persuasion tool in a variety of situations to improve your chance of compliance
Trust me – I’ve tried it, it works fabulously.  I have used it with my team, with clients, with my kids(amazing results), and even my husband, the results have astounded even me!

One of my clients also decided to put the ‘meaningless’  finding to the test.  Her requests for her husband to put the kids to bed usually resulted in a micro argument and responses like “ohhh why can’t you?”, or  “why me?” – so this is what she tried:
“Greg, can you please put the kids to bed, because, I want you to put the kids to bed”
He complied immediately, although she said he did have a bemused expression on his face – Priceless!

Because’ however, has been poorly represented  – it often only comes out in communication generally after a request has been made and possible resistance to your request already established.  If you use ‘because’ mainly after the request ‘response’, you are missing the subtle yet powerful  persuasion power of this one word.

As a parent this word is a gem!  Please note …….”just because I say” doesn’t cut it!

Using ‘because’ before you get the ‘but why?’ – definitely increases your chances of resistant proof compliance.

You can also use ‘because’ as a bridge, to the future possibility of a pay off or reward to increase your chances of compliance even further, which mitigates the bribery feel of  ‘if you do this, then you can have that’

Parent Examples:   
“Sarah, can you please go and clean your room because I want play a game with you when you are done.”
or        “Matt, please go and do your homework because ………………………….”

Staff examples:
“Sam can you please make sure you call everyone on the list today because…………………………….”
Jill can you please work an extra 3 hours today because……………………………”
“Sarah can I go ahead of you for this meeting because………………….”
“Shane can you please work for me on Saturday because………………………….”
(ps it can also work if you work as an employee “John, can I please have the day off on Monday, because…………..)

In addition the ‘because’ buzz also works in reverse.  Getting others to say ‘because’ to you strengthens their ties to you or your organisation or service.  Getting kids for example to say why it’s important to eat vegies, re-affirms and wires into the brain that eating their vegies is good.  Getting your clients to complete surveys about why they do business with you, may in fact strengthen their loyalty.

As I suggested earlier ‘because’ truly is the elixir of willing compliance!   And may just be the ‘key word’ for marital bliss, perfectly compliant children and willing, respondent staff!

C’mon, add it to your request dialogue for just 2 weeks!! ……………. Because, because, because, because, because………….. because of the wonderful things it does! your mouth watering?

Mirror, Mirror ……. in my brain?

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There is no real independent self, aloof from other human beings, inspecting the world, inspecting other people. You are, in fact, connected not just via Facebook and Internet, you’re actually quite literally connected by your neurons.”
(Vilayanur Ramachandran- Neuro-scientist)

Just as observing someone sucking a lemon (is your mouth watering yet?) can fire up mirror neurons and evoke a ‘mouth watering’ response without having the actual experience of a sour lemon, mirror neurons can fire with a number of other triggers.

In the earlier part of this decade, Italian researchers discovered a branch of neurons in the brain called mirror neurons.  Originally they identified this subset of neurons relating to motor function – they were dubbed the ‘monkey see monkey do’ neurons – this subset of neurons would fire in the motor centre of the brain when someone observed another person picking up an object from a table.

This led to the discovery of another mirror neuron system called affinity/empathy/ rapport builder  neurons or nicknamed ‘Ghandi neurons’ – this subset of neurons fire when people observe someone in pain, physically or emotionally and also fire when we see part of ourselves in others – ie when we can relate to others these mirror neurons fire and build stronger rapport and affinity towards the other person.
Understanding how these neurons work to strengthen our affinity for others can prove a powerful and influential relationship builder across all areas of our lives, from intimate relationships to parenting, social and career applications including client relationships, customer service skills and sales.  Building rapport helps to build and strengthen trust in a relationship.

Get started with these easy and simple ways to get those affinity/rapport building mirror neurons firing:

  • Use ‘my’ words – When communicating with people using familiar language works wonders.  Repeat back what someone is telling you by using the same words, phrases and terms that they have used – this fires off mirror neurons that build rapport.
  • Know ‘my’ name – How lovely is it when someone remembers your name!  Using someone’s name is one of the most powerful and easy ways to build rapport through this mirror process.  Every time you say their name mirror neurons fire building affinity with you and your message/ideas.  Plus, if you are less than fabulous at remembering names – using a person’s name you first meet at least five times increases your chances of remembering it in the future.
  • Body language – Noticing and mirroring/matching a person’s body language and gestures is another way to build rapport.  This does take practice to master to ensure the other person is not feeling mimicked or copied, however there are a few simple and effective ideas that can get you started.

Watch out for our ‘rapport building’ training sessions on this in our membership program.

Until next time,
Breathe Deeply, Love Openly, Be the Difference  

Vision makes all the difference

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‘Vision comes alive, ONLY when it is shared’

                                                                        (Westley and Mitzberg)


I find it fascinating at my seminars when I ask how many people have a vision – hands fly up – when I ask who can tell me it, most hands dive for the floor! So often I talk with people who have been to a seminar or read a book on vision and then go to creating their ‘vision statement’ in an attempt to tick the box of vision, many of them rarely  or never looking at or developing with that vision again.

Deciding on your vision, whether it be personally, professionally, for your office or your family, or team is not the end result.  Deciding on your vision is just the beginning!


There is a dynamic balancing act between holding a vision bigger than yourself and this moment as leverage to move you forward to expressing more of your potential and holding a vision in a way that paralyses you to take any action due to the seemingly astounding magnitude of the task that lies ahead


People are inspired and mobilized to action by those who offer a clear vision and are able to communicate it with clarity, confidence and certainty.  A vision that easily slips off our tongue and genuinely shines through in every encounter with ourselves and our people.


Some Business Development coaches suggest that even with a vision, most people on average express at less than 1/3 of that vision  – and if we are leading a team or a group – our people’s ability to express their understanding of our vision will be 1/3 of our expression (ie 1/3 of 1/3)!


Increasing this expression is possible through closing the gap on thoughts, conversations and behaviours, routines and ultimately habits


It also makes sense that to increase our influence and our results  – we first need to know, grow and sow our vision!! E.g.  whatever our vision for chiropractic and our people is  – our team, our patients and community will be expressing their understanding at just one third of one third!


A vital reason to be clear, certain and engaged with your vision.

An example of a clear and simple vision in a chiropractic office  –

‘ Lifetime chiropractic wellness care for everyone’


Keystone action steps:


Discuss and explore your office vision with team

Write out your vision and ideas that evolve everyday for 30 days

Begin to explore and develop a personal vision or re-visit one you have

Explore your office vision with your team looking at ways to improve and enhance principles in ‘the gap’ to grow your vision expression

Think Globally – act locally – ie hold your vision while ‘doing your daily activities’ by publishing on documents, talking about your vision, having it in places you will see eg mirror, car, wallet etc