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    The most important thing I do all year...

    The most important thing I do all year...


    THIS IS US 5 YEARS AGO TO THE DAY (FACEBOOK JUST TOLD ME!)

    Every year before it ends, Elliot and I sit down to write out all the big, small and tiny accomplishments of the previous 12 months.

    This has become the single most important task I do all year.

    There is nothing as incredibly thrilling, motivating, inspirational, fun, eye opening, gratifying, healing and self-appreciating all at the same time.

    It’s too easy to say that another year just flew by and there are many things you never got a chance to do, but when you start to write down all the things you DID do, the experience is entirely different. The deep gratitude stirring within you, makes it so much easier to plan for the year ahead.

    If I ever struggle to remember all the details on the spot, I open up my diary and go through it carefully. All those meetings, trips, events, tasks, highlighted dates, dinners and bookings in my calendar never fail to amaze and delight even the most pushy-never-enough-accomplished-critic within me.

    It really is that powerful! And simple. And fun! So fun, what are you waiting for?

    Happy Happy Happy New Year!
    xTanya

    P.S. Originally, I wrote out a few of my accomplishments as an example for you to read. They were so damn good and I was so madly proud that I figured it’s probably not the most inspirational example for anyone but me. It could even put you off starting your own list, not because no one would ever top my examples but because they couldn’t possibly compete with YOUR examples. There is no one (I repeat ‘NO ONE’) that has achieved what you have, do yourself a favour and stop reading already, unless it’s your online calendar of 2016 and you’re making notes!

    P.P.S. Screw New Year resolutions, it’s all about the Old Year solutions!

    P.P.P.S. Don’t ever listen to anyone that tries to tell you that 1st of January is just another day. It isn’t. It’s the best day ever!

    P.P.P.P.S. If you’re still reading this, then it’s very likely that there’s nothing to do in the office at this time of year and my email was possibly the only email you’ll receive all day, so why not play a game. Here’s a game>>

    Long haul with a baby

    Long haul with a baby

    Lake Maher_ Tanya's Cafe_ Kale chips Trying cashew kale chips for the first time  

    Funny flight story (‘funny’ because it’s behind us ;-))…

    It took 4 flights, 4 taxis and 43 hours to arrive at my parents’ Sungate 11:11 in Vilcabamba, Ecuador.

    The connecting flight to Madrid was a total dream with a 10 months old. I inquired both at Heathrow and at Madrid airport desks about a good seat for Lake and I for our remaining 12 hour flight to Guayaquil and was assured with great certainty that the flight is looking empty, that there will be no one next to us and that after take-off we will even be able to change to a four-seater row!

    Lake Maher long haul with baby

    Soooo we board the flight with confidence, find our seat and spread all the toys, snacks and bags across our isle seat and the empty window seat next to us. Then 5 minutes before take-off, people start piling in! PILING IN!

    And so many of them, some with 5 bags each, some with caged cats, some with caged dogs. It was like watching a movie, because that’s how surreal it all looked.

    At this stage, I’m still pretty optimistic about the extra space on this flight, I almost don’t notice the man telling a cat woman behind us that she’s seated in the wrong seat and needs to move herself, her cat and all four of her bags next to me and Lake.

    I start to panic trying to work out how to keep the baby happy while I gather aaaall of our belongings to fit in a tiny space underneath my feet (anyone with kids knows just how much you need for a 1 hour walk, let alone a 43 hour journey!).

    Lake senses my panic and starts to get squeamish, meanwhile the cat woman keeps saying something to me in Spanish. If you were to mute this whole scene, it probably looked a little like an over exaggerated version of charades, where she is gesturing for us to transfer to a window seat so that she and all of her stuff wouldn’t have to.

    Then as everyone is loudly fussing and climbing over each other to get to their seat and competing to fit what ever they could into tiny overhead lockers, the cat woman starts climbing too and in the midst of throwing her bags onto the seat next to us (I’m still collecting our toys), she manages to bang Lake on the head with her cat’s cage.

    Then the crying begins! By this stage it’s not only Lake crying either…

    I grab my upset baby and me, shoot over to see a flight attendant, she helps us find a better seat, helps us make the dreadful transfer and just as I start to settle, she tells us there’s an even better seat. I’m a mixed bag of skeptical, pleased, annoyed and hopeful, but I go alone with it. She is right, the seat is much better and there is now a whole empty one next to us!

    We are good to go at last.


    Long haul with kids

    We are buckled in, Lake on my lap strapped to my seatbelt, I catch a breather (and a few smiling faces that have just witnessed our musical chairs episode), everyone is in their seats, cabin crew have completed the prep for take off and are now nowhere to be seen as they disappear behind the curtains to take their seats. Relaxed in my seat, I’m about to begin my ‘take off meditation’ but before I close my eyes, I gaze over the tv screen:

    “Enjoy your flight to Quito”…  Quito?? OMG!

    I turn to an Ecuadorean man across the isle: “Quito?”, “Si, Quito” he smiles. “Noooooo!”

    I practically tear the seatbelt off of me and Lake, swing her over my shoulder and jump out from our seat like a ninja turtle!

    The “surreal movie” continues, except I’m no longer the one watching it, everyone is watching ME! In this movie, I’m the crazy woman with a baby over my shoulder, running towards the front of the plane yelling “excuse me, excuse me, I need to be on a flight to Guayaquil, my dad is there to meet his granddaughter for the first time!!!”

    A flight attendant pops out from behind the curtain, explains that two flights were combined at the last minute and that the first stop is Quito but I get to transfer there onto Guayaquil and still arrive on schedule. I walk the walk of shame all the way back to our seat with everyone cheering and smiling my way, but I tell myself it’s because I have such a cute baby and nothing to do with the entertainment that her crazy mother just provided for a plane jam-packed full of spectators.

    Moral of the Story?… Do not make fun of crazy people, one day they might be you. (And don’t call cat lovers ‘cat woman’, that’s not very nice.)


    When nothing goes to plan...

    When nothing goes to plan...

    I’m supposed to be writing to you from Corfu today, somewhere on a crystal water beach, sun kissed and salt stained, squinting at the screen through my brand new sunglasses.

    Instead, I’m writing to you from my desk at home, in London, because not everything is supposed to go to plan. Your plan.

    I was so looking forward to this trip. Both Elliot and I really needed a mini holiday in the sun and the timing seemed perfect as my co-founders of Tanya’s just finished their incredible three year eco-centre and rejuvenation project, which we were eager to see for ourselves.

    On Thursday (the day before flight) I got a strange feeling about it and waved it off. Then I felt physical cramps and knowing that body pains are linked to emotions and often premonitions, I started listing out possible reasons. When I got to ‘don’t go to Greece’, the pain went away. How weird, I thought, I have already had to miss out on Greece once before when my passport with a new visa was meant to arrive in three months but didn’t for the longest eight months of my life, over which time the boat trip around the Greek islands that I paid for in full has been and gone.

    This can’t be happening again, not to me.

    On Friday I went on to pack my bags, ran a few final errands, set up an auto responder for my inbox, ordered a taxi to the train station and went to grab my passport. And then went to another potential place it could be. And then another. Another. Soon I was out of rooms, bags and shelves to look.

    Something didn’t seem right.

    Over all the years I’ve been traveling, I have never even misplaced my passport, let alone felt clueless as to where it could be. There were still a few hours till the plane, so I didn’t panic and took the opportunity to clean good before going on a holiday. So I looked and moved stuff and cleaned stuff and folded and filed and de-cluttered and nothing.

    I meditated. Nothing.
    Texted everyone who’s been over recently. Nothing.
    Re-traced my entire journey with passport in hand after last trip overseas. Nothing.
    Then, OMG, I have a dousing rod that can answer any question in the world!

    I asked it the usual questions first to just make sure everything was working well energetically:
    ‘can I ask questions about my passport?’,
    ‘is my name Tanya?’,
    ‘is my name Mary?’ (just to make sure not all answers point to yes by default),
    ‘etc’,
    ‘etc’,
    ‘is the passport in the lounge?’
    ‘is the passport in the lounge?’
    Strange, because the rod didn’t move to either a yes or a no. I then walked through every room and asked if the passport was there, still no movement. I asked other unrelated question and got perfect cooperation, just not when it came to something I was now obviously being protected from.

    I called my mum in Ecuador to check with her dousing rod, and it immediately said we are not supposed to go anywhere.

    Clearly upset by this time, but not willing to give up, mainly for Elliot, who I know needed this trip even more than me, I continued to look together with him when he ran through the door to pick up our bags.

    It wasn’t until we were completely and utterly exhausted and missed the only two flights that would get us into Corfu in time for our friends’ project launch and after we cancelled our return flights, that the dousing rod started ‘working’ again and told me the passport was in the kitchen. Without even trying to think where exactly, I immediately walked towards the cupboard that I somehow suddenly knew it’d be in.

     

    IMG_2944

    Gutted we weren’t in Corfu, obviously. But I didn’t feel like it was the end of the world and everything was going against me.

    Instead I felt quite the opposite.

    I’d always known that I’m being protected and I’d always trusted that the universe has my back. That doesn’t mean that I’ll give up on something just because my intuition is in a chatty mood, but in this case I know I’ve tried every avenue and I have to believe that my guardian angels are by my side. I also know that I don’t need to know or wonder now about what could’ve happened if I went anyway. I may never find out the reason.

    I just need to trust.
    And I do.

    I’m so grateful that a protection this strong and powerful is out there. So grateful that it’s looking after me, Elliot and anyone who’s willing to trust it too.

    Hope your Wednesday is the best Wednesday ever!

    With love and trust,

    Tanya

     

    P.S. DO YOU HAVE A SIMILAR STORY? I’D LOVE TO KNOW IF YOU EVER DISCOVERED THE REASON WHY YOU WERE BEING HELD BACK. TELL ME IN THE COMMENT BELOW…

    Revealing my personal vision board for the very first time + Steps to create your own

    Revealing my personal vision board for the very first time + Steps to create your own

    It may not appear this way, as I’m always on social media posting instant updates, but I’m a pretty private person.

    I work away quietly in the background, I’m what they categorise as a hermit, prefer to do many things alone, I keep a ‘sometimes’ diary and often don’t share half of what’s inside even with people closest to me.

    I have never showed my vision board to anyone.

    So yeah- sharing it publicly is a pretty big deal.
    Before I do the big reveal though, I wanted to tell you how I knew that IT REALLY WORKS …

    The first time I’ve ever heard of this manifestation technique was when I was fresh out of uni, working in my dream job as a commercial leasing agent, already with two mortgages on investment properties, $25K in student loan debt (some of which went towards the investments), rent to pay in central Auckland and just $200 in my bank account. Being commission based, I never knew when I’d be paid next. Having to drive clients around (without knowing when I’d be paid next) was fun, but on a gas tank that cost half of what was in my account, not so much.

    Then I got hold of a book called The Secret.

    A certain visualisation exercise really inspired me. You had to focus on a word or image, which you desired and by doing so daily, you’d send out vibrational frequencies, that should eventuate into reality. That same night, I printed off my bank statement, twinked out the date and the summary balance (remember twink?) and changed them to $45,000 for a year from then.

    It felt totally absurd writing down five figures, especially since I was so used to seeing only three or even two, and had absolutely no crafty plan or clue about how that would even happen.

    Very soon, I was to learn this:

    1. YOU DON’T ALWAYS NEED A PLAN. THE WHAT AND THE WHY ARE YOUR JOB, THE HOW AND THE WHEN ARE UP TO THE UNIVERSE.

    2. TRUST THE UNIVERSE. IT ALWAYS HAS YOUR BACK.

     

    Almost a year later, it seemed that things got even worse and I was going backwards…

    The big recession started to creep in. The property market dropped and so did the leasing demands, I was advised to sell my properties fast, but no one wanted to buy. Meanwhile, the ‘twinked-out’ aka ‘dream’ bank statement remained up on my dressing mirror. I still took note of it every day.

    Then my business partner decided he didn’t want to sell our investments for any lower than our purchase price, instead we got a valuation and he bought me out.

    Can you guess what I got for the deal? That’s right- $45,000.

     

    Could it really be that easy? Does this really work every time? Is our potential really only limited by our own imagination? Does law of attraction truly exist?

    There was only one way to find out… I need to experiment some more! :)

    I put together my ‘proper’ vision board, which is basically a collage of pictures and words that you desire. I’ve done this now  for every new year and today will mark my seventh. I won’t say that every year, it all got ticked off, but the universe has a fascinating way of translating our little pictures into our big picture. Sometimes the result was even better than what I set out to manifest. Sometimes, it wasn’t in my spiritual DNA and I was guided to change my next year’s image that was nearer to my true calling.

    Below is my 2014 vision board.

    If you’re inspired to create your own, see the steps beneath it. If you’d like to know more about mine and what got ticked off, continue scrolling…

    ..   tanya maher_ vision board_ how to_ 2014

    SIMPLE STEPS TO MAKE YOUR VISION BOARD

    1. Play some good tunes, light a scented candle, clean your sacred space for creativity, load up on magazines or have the printer handy if you are searching online.

    2. Cut out images and words, which inspire you. They may be feelings, desires, goals, specific targets or numbers, and as long as they aren’t so completely unreasonable that you don’t believe them achievable for a second yourself, then they belong on our vision board!

    3. Place the cut-outs on a large cardboard or a stretched canvas. Continue to arrange them, until it feels just right, then glue them in place.

    4. Now that your vision board is ready, place or hang it where it can’t be ignored. Take it all in, see it as a whole, see it as individual parts and then breathe as though they have already happened. Give it a little attention daily and celebrate with deep gratitude each desire that is coming true for you. Remember that you’ve done your job, so become an observer, let go of any attachments to it and let the universe do its job.

     

     

    tanya maher_ vision board_ 2014

    MY 2014 BOARD IN DETAIL

    1. The office table represents a clean workspace where I can be more organised and creative. We moved house in 2014, got an extra bedroom for an office and a desk and chair for our wedding present. TICK.

    2. The ‘my’ stickers over a kitchen represent a collaboration with myhotels group for a new cafe. When I put this board together at the end of 2013, we were just ‘chatting’, but i knew what I wanted. The result- Tanya’s Cafe inside myhotel Chelsea! TICK.

    3. The living wall is actually part of the kitchen in the photo. For anyone that’s seen Tanya’s, you’d know that I got my living wall :) TICK.

    4. My book deal with Hay House! There are so many authors whose work I respect and words I treasure, but the majority happen to be Hay House authors. I’ve decided long ago that this is a publisher for me but only added them to my vision board in 2014. [BTW note how being specific and putting a picture of yourself on the cover tells the universe that YOU are the author]. In July I received the most exciting email of the year, from none other than… HayHouse! In December, I signed a contract for The Uncook Book, out September 2015. TICK.

    5. Interestingly- this was an empty area and I needed to find a picture to fill it up. I randomly chose the pic of these tigers as they seemed to fit in perfectly. Ha! We all know nothing happens randomly and the more I looked at it, the more I resonated with the spiritual meaning of a tiger totem:
    “By affinity with this spirit animal, you may enjoy dealing with life matters spontaneously, trusting your intuition and acting fast when needed.”- Spiritanimal.info TICK.

    6. Visa! In 2014, we were due for a visa renewal, which was the most challenging thus far. We’ve celebrated five years in London, which meant that getting this visa would give us Indefinite Leave to Remain. But first, there was studying for a Life in the UK exam, hundreds of documents to fill out and thousands of pounds in accountant’s and immigration lawyer’s fees. All totally worth it, because now we are only a year away from a British passport. TICK.

    7. This picture to me represented open plan living, a bigger kitchen and a creative space to work. Interestingly, not only did we move to a new much-bigger flat, which TICKS these elements, but it also has an exposed brick wall!

    8. I love this picture so much. Not only do I have the love of my life by my side, but we are facing in the same direction, doing the same thing, in the best city in the world, while being totally random and taking risks on such an iconic public bridge. It’s just a feel good image and a vision board is meant for feeling good. I wanted to create more memories with Elliot by my side and of course 2014 was the year we said ‘I do’. BIG TICK.

    9. I love green and to me, this image means relaxing holidays in nature. We tied the knot in the most beautiful place best known for its outdoors- the Coromandel, NZ, our friends took us glamping in Wales as a wedding present, my 30th was on a beach in Barcelona and my retreat was in the most pure organic part of the word- Vilcabamba, Ecuador. TICK.

    10. Here’s an obvious one. Babies, babies! 2014 was the year when Elliot and I settled on a plan, we are both happy with. TICK.

    11. IIN x 55 was about getting that many people signed up to the health coach course in a year. I’m a proud ambassador for IIN and a big believer in everything they do, so this year I wanted to aim higher than the 13 people I referred in 2013. I’m a couple of people away, so would like to call it a TICK!

    12. Family. I love my family to bits, but while my sis lives in New York with her husband, my parents live in Ecuador, I’m in London with my husband and his parents are in New Zealand- our wedding in March made it- THE family year. TICK.

    13. My sis and I make hearts using our hands and yoga poses too, so this is the image which represented us together. She surprised me for my 30th with a trip to Barcelona! And it was on a beach too! TICK.

    14. This was something I felt silly doing, but just goes to show how powerful a vision board can be. At the time I photoshoped the number of fans Better Raw has on FB, there were only 12,000 odd. The difference may not seem like massive ask, but it did take me 3 whole years to gather 12,000 fans and a whole lot of competitions, bribery, posting, sharing, liking, linking and commenting to get there. How I was to get to 45,555 in a single year, I had no idea, but remember the ‘how’ is not up to you, just know ‘why’ you want it. I knew I had too many inspiring healthy tips to share that would improve the lives of many. A year later and we are up to 47,480. Wow! TICK.

     

    NOW YOUR TURN.

    WHAT DID YOU TICK OFF IN 2014? TELL ME IN THE COMMENTS BELOW…

    I've lost a friend

    I've lost a friend

    Today I learned about the sad sad news of losing our Polly.

    The fire and ambition in her soul was almost comparable to the size of her kind heart. Polly Noble was an inspiration to so many around the world via her blog, Instagram/Twitter/Facebook posts, her book, eBooks, online courses and magazine articles. I know that she lived, worked and fought till the very end, but perhaps Heaven was looking for a magical angel and there’s truly no one like Polly.

    P1070370

    Her struggling, surviving, thriving, fighting and struggling with cancer again and again has been a roller coaster for some years now, but she never gave up. There wasn’t a therapy that she didn’t explore, whether it was as mainstream as chemo or as alternative as John of God in Brazil. What this brave girl went through would make any of our worries seem insignificant, but she never rubbed it in and powered on, making us watch her in total awe and feel like we can do absolutely anything.

    I am shaking as I type this, not even sure why I’m posting news that are this raw and sorrowful, but I’m being guided right now and I have a feeling it’s by Polly herself.

    Actually I know it is.

    I know that she’d want her family to know how much all the insane laughter helped her stay sane.

    I know that she’d want her friends to know how their support was the greatest gift in this short life.

    I know that she’d want her followers to know that it was their kind comments that gave her strength to carry on.

    And I know that she’d want me to share this below conversation we had over text just after my and Elliot’s engagement party last year.

    I know this, because she recently told me just how much that text meant to her and how encouraging words can keep your spirit alive, even when your body won’t keep up. She also mentioned about how much more power hurtful words have, which sometimes override any other beliefs. This really struck a cord with me.

    So let Polly’s wisdom serve us all as a reminder to be kind with our words, no matter if they are aimed at a close family member, a colleague, a stranger or anonymously on social media.

    Thank you for helping me write this, my friend. Love you always.

    polly noble text