Mindset: Take control and make your life your own. Own it!


I learnt about ‘Mindset’ on a wellbeing course I did a few years ago. Unbeknown to me at the time, this would be one of the best investments I was to ever make in myself. You can achieve anything with the correct mindset. You can take control and make your life your own!

‘Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve’  Napoleon Hill, (Renowned self-help author)

Recently, someone asked me where I was at in my life, in relation to my happiness, love and health. My simple answer to that question was that all three are working together in absolute harmony.

It sounds a little too good to be true doesn’t it! I’m not saying I never have days where I might feel a little sad, or a little flat or frustrated, but overall life is great! Why? Because I’m in control of it and I believe in myself!

girl running in the middle of a filed with trees and mountains in the background

About five years ago, things were very different…

An Unexpected Jolt

Whilst on duty in the playground at school, a basketball came flying over a roof and knocked me out. I suffered a bad concussion which restricted my movements for quite a while. I gained about 10 kg in weight. It also gave me time to think and reflect on how I was living my life. Prior to the concussion, my exercise routines had been sporadic to say the least. I worked full-time as a teacher, had a family of three teenage boys and a home to look after. I didn’t have time for exercise. I definitely didn’t have time for me and rarely even had time to think!

I realised I was in a rut! That old cliché! We hear it everywhere, at work, in relationships and in life in general. That rut can pull us down so deep that sometimes it seems just too hard to lift ourselves back out. I’m sure many of you can relate; you feel stressed, bored with your routine, life seems so mundane, and you resign yourself to thinking that this is how it is going to be from here on in.

I realised I was just too busy – I was lost in all the things that needed to be done and had lost myself in the process.  I was feeling like the clothes in a washing machine – going round and round with little chance to come up for air.

Three photos all te same but in different positions - it is a blurry head that looks like it is in a washing machine

 A ‘Wellbeing’ Course – The Vitality Fit Program

It was at this point that I serendipitously came across a coaching program being held for women. The universe … fate, whatever, had presented it to me at the perfect time!

The questions on the ‘Vitality Fit Program’ brochure had me screaming a big fat “YES”, to all of them .

–  Do your good intentions get hijacked by life’s demands and other people’s needs?

–  Do you feel burnout, tired and exhausted and you just want to press the ‘pause’ button on life for a moment?

–  Are you curious to know more about yourself, why you do what you do and are you looking for an opportunity to refocus on what is important to you?

–  Have you had trouble breaking unhealthy habits that stop you achieving good health and fitness?

At the risk of sounding overly dramatic, that course changed my life forever!

Three photos - the first of a woman with a backpack in the mountains, the second a girl on a mountain climbing the side of it and the third a woman on a bike with a backpack and smiling at the camera

What Did I Learn?

I learnt about various tools which would help me to develop my mindset, learnings about myself and how to change my actions to get the results that I wanted. I was in control of my mind and emotions.

I gained the confidence to believe that I could create the life that I wanted.

I got the help and support to replace the beliefs and habits that weren’t working and replace them with ones that would.

I had a coach that helped identify my hurdles and challenges and guided me to create opportunities.

My coach, had the uncanny ability to ask the right questions so I could see the answers myself, and steer me in the right direction.

“The quality of your life is a reflection of the quality of the questions you ask yourself.”                 Tony Robbins

Three photos all the same object - woman with backpack looking out over a lake and mountains with a reflection. Each photo is a slightly different colour one beige and one grey and one greeny blue.

So, What is Mindset?

This isn’t a scientific report. However, there are plenty of articles out there for you to research ‘Positive Mindset’ and I would urge you to do so. These are just my takes on ‘Mindset’ and the main ideas I use to help myself. 

Your mindset covers your beliefs, attitudes and values. For example, I learnt that one of my ‘beliefs’ was that it would be ‘selfish’ if I took time out for me. This was just a belief that became reality … but I learnt to change that belief! 

The basics of mindset are backed up by Neuroscience. Creating neural pathways by thinking or doing something repeatedly becomes a habit. Therefore, as a result, small changes that you make everyday can build into a new mindset and thus result in new outcomes in your life.

A healthy, positive mindset enables you to change all aspects of your life.

Your thoughts are crucial to the development of your feelings and therefore you can control how you react.

A positive mindset changes your attitudes and consequently your outcomes.

You can fine tune those inner doubts and create a positive inner dialogue.

Studies show that what you believe is possible makes a difference to what you can achieve.

Having a positive mindset doesn’t mean you will never fail, but you learn from the situation and change something in order for you to succeed. In addition, you view setbacks as an opportunity to grow. 

michelle in foreground wearing a white top with Krka Waterfalls in the background - lots of cascading waterfalls on bluey green waterKrka National Park Falls, Croatia – I’d admired the photos of this place many times and here I was … in my own photo! In control and living the life I wanted.

Developing a Positive Mindset

It didn’t happen overnight but in a short space of time my life was changing for the better. Having a coach to guide me was extremely useful. Sometimes you already know the answer but they make it easy to clear the wood from the trees. Sharon, from Vitality fit made this process so much easier.

Little changes grew into big changes and I was starting to get a handle on my ‘Mindset’! I was exercising regularly, and having time out for me. I started painting, reading more and relaxing in the hammock! I realised that just because I spent less hours planning and researching brilliant lessons, didn’t make me any less of a good teacher!  Little changes made a big difference. For example, I asked my boys to each make one meal a week and as a result, I had ‘created’ more time. Did I feel guilty? Not with my new mindset – I was a happier person  to be around and I learnt to love myself as much as I loved everyone else. 

I was nailing it!

woman with her back to the camera looking downstream at a river with many white pebbles and rocks.

The Ultimate Test

Then something happened that rocked my world. At the time I was devastated, confused, and again torn between what was best for someone else and what was best for me. It was a situation that could throw many into a spiral of despair. My world was turned upside down and topsy-turvy but I had my ‘mindset’ working with me! I was almost knocked off kilter but I steadied myself, took the reins and regained control. I owned it!

It wasn’t easy! I had to make a decision that went against so many of my ingrained beliefs. If I kept them, it would mean I would be unhappy. This was a huge challenge to maintain a positive mindset, outlook and therefore the results that I achieved. 

I believed I’d be ok. I believed I could do it, and I believed that however bad things seemed at the time … there would be even better things ahead. 

In amongst the turmoil, I stayed focused and used my own mind to get me through… and get me through it did! I continued to improve each little aspect of my life. I even completed a 12km True Grit Obstacle Course with my three boys which was one of the goals I set myself! A few years earlier I would have laughed in your face at the very thought!

three photos in a row - one of a woman clambering along the ground under barbed wire, covered in mud. The second the woman with three young men all wearing sport wear and soaking wet having just waded through a river. The third the same woman with arms in air smiling in celebration.

‘Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve’ , Napoleon Hill

It is a constant work in progress, but with my most important tool in my toolbox – a positive growth mindset – life is definitely easier and I have found contentment. 

Health, Love and Happiness

I have never been healthier, (though these peri-menopausal hot flushes are appearing rather often … but that’s just one  of nature’s gifts to most women around my age!). I keep up a healthy balance of regular exercise and nutritious food, with the occasional indulgence of dark chocolate!

I am engaged to a man who I love deeply and who loves me to pieces and for who I am perfect, even with all my imperfections!  

I have three gorgeous sons who I adore and with whom I have a fantastic relationship – even though they love to take the Micky out of me all the time!

 I have friends who are very special to me.

 I am travelling the world, living a life I love and living it now! 

Family photo of Michelle and Lars with her three boys. in the snow

Yes. I am happy, healthy and surrounded by love. Lucky? No. I created this.

I own it!

Do you feel stuck in a rut? Life is just too short to stay there! Take some action, no matter how small, to make a change. Perhaps read up about ‘mindset’, contact a coach who can help guide you and look at your choices. There is always a way out.

Live your life now … not ‘one day’! 

I ‘d love to hear your stories. Have you been ‘stuck in rut’ ?  Perhaps you are there now or maybe you have lifted yourself out? If so, how did you do that? Do you have a story to share about mindset ? How did it help you?

Let’s start a conversation, leave a comment or, if this article has helped in any way, share the love!

I look forward to hearing from you. x


Further Information

If you are feeling “stuck in a rut” and need some help, Sharon and Mark are two coaches I have personally worked with and can recommend without hesitation. 

They can coach you either in person, or over the phone/web communications. They will then guide you through a series of sessions to break down unresourceful barriers and address what is holding you back. In addition, and most importantly, they will help you build a more positive and healthy mindset to give you the energy and control that you need to gain positive outcomes. You can contact them by email sharon@upliftingwellness.com.au  or phone (+61) 428 336123. 

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact us.



Author: Michelle

After finishing my Law Degree I decided to become a teacher. I am passionate about teaching and learning and most of all, about inspiring others. I love sharing our travels and journey through our blog, our articles and our photographs and I hope, through these, we can play a part in inspiring you to do whatever ‘satisfies your soul’.

4 Comment

  1. I totally get this, and Sharon and Mark really helped me too. I was over-stressed for a long time at work, and ended up being diagnosed with depression. It took me a long time to recognise that this wasn’t ok, and by that time I had put on lots of weight (stress eating…), it was affecting my relationship, I developed this thing called spinal dizziness (which ironically, physically creates depression) and I was very unhappy. But I sought help from a lovely pshychologist and an exceptional physiotherapist, overcame my depression, and, while it took a long time for me to develop a positive mindset, and actively make changes, once I got there, things changed incredibly quickly for me. I made the difficult decision to quit my job, and walk away from a lot of exciting opportunities, benefits and most importantly, friends at that job. Then things started to fall into place – I got motivated to lose the extra kilos, and lost 22kg in 4 months (and counting!), developed a maintainable healthy lifestyle, found a new job which is challenging and rewarding, but so far, without a lot of stress, and I have all this energy to do things I haven’t done in ages. Motivation comes easily to me now and whilst the past few years has been incredibly difficult, I have learnt so much, and I even appreciate those tough times, because it has made me appreciate these great times a whole lot more, and I am a stronger, more capable person than before. I have no idea what the future holds career wise, but I took a risk, and I’m completely fine with not knowing, thanks to a positive attitude and some sort of inner knowledge that everything will work out in the end.

    1. Hi Denise,
      Reading this made me feel so happy, knowing that you have overcome such a huge challenge in your life and you have turned it around. That ‘inner knowledge’ you mention, is so important and when we listen to it and really believe in ourselves we can achieve anything – just like you have, and are still doing. Thank you so much for sharing your story. So many others will relate to this and see that there is a way forward. You are testament to that. You have found that ‘mindset’ you needed and although not easy, you are definitely ‘owning it’ now! What you have achieved is amazing and so inspirational for all.

  2. Totally with you on this Michelle. I ve always had a positive outlook and when I got breast cancer 2 years ago I saw it as a challenge but also an opportunity. People said I was inspirational – I wasnt but I chose to approach it in the only way I know how. It has also made me rethink my life and I “ don’t sweat the small stuff” anymore. I’ve done mindfulness and meditation and also started yoga

    1. Thank you so much for sharing Deb. You are inspirational, as you chose to believe in yourself and have made changes that help you and your health.
      Not only does your positive mindset help you – it radiates from you and that positivity effects those around you ❤️

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