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Ten ways women can champion women better

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If you interact with me only online, you may be mistaken in thinking, I am super confident, sure and assertive. The truth is that extroverts struggle in a room full of new people just as much as introverts do, we just access our insecurities from different places.

Until yesterday I thought I was somewhat anonymous at my new school. A quick run in with my little in the morning and a smile, wave then I was out of there. As I closed the school gate, hoping to run to my car as quickly as I could for a radio interview, a school Mum caught me on the fly.

She said, “I follow you on social media”.

Cringe, “Oh gosh”

My heart leaped into my throat.

Then she went on to say… “I love what you write about, thank you so much.”

My heart eased, my insecurities wained and my heart pumped furiously in my chest. Her encouragement was the elixir I needed to get me through a radio interview, that I was worried about my content and its application. She had no idea that I was frazzled, throwing lunch together, dragging a two-year-old out of the gates and going off to sit in a car and talk to thousands on radio. Her encouragement was a balm to my soul.

We as women need to get better at championing one another. We never know the encouragement that comes out of our hearts and how that impacts another. When we become head cheerleaders, we have the capacity to change important and necessary things. When she succeeds, it does not dampen our success. When she wins, we all win.

Here are ten ways that I think we can become better at community over competition.

At the school gate

As I mentioned above, I would be categorized as an extrovert and I have lots of people I call my friends but joining a new school community is breathtakingly difficult. You notice the clicks, you hope you have the right day and uniform. You wince as you park, hoping you haven’t broken any silent rules. Women, we need to champion each other at the school gate. Even if it is as simple as a smile. An encouragement. Noticing change and tension. This could be the only kind interaction someone gets all day.

At the water fountain

There is nothing worse in the workplace than walking around the corner and hearing a conversation suddenly drop to a whisper and peter out. It is like the water fountain and kitchen in the corporate office becomes the feeding ground fodder for gossip. I have been on the receiving end of conversations that have not been kind or uplifting, misreading the situation and deeply grieving my soul. What if the water fountain became a source of encouragement. “How are you?”, “That project you are working on looks difficult, you are doing a great job”. It actually isn’t that hard to find something kind to say, when it becomes a language that you speak.


The greatest scourge of our society currently is the way we speak to each other online. I don’t follow many pages because my heart and mind are deeply sensitive to what I read. It is like it invades my heart space when the words hit my screen. I often say to people I am mentoring, especially young adults. “Could or would you say that on a stage in front of 1,000 people?” If you can’t, then do not write it down in words. I know an amazing writer and publisher, that writes encouraging words on every post she see’s. It is like her mandate is to encourage and uplift. Each and every time she writes to me, it is like water to a weary, dry soul. It is powerful.

In Comparison

The more we compare, the greater the difficulty there is to encourage. When you want “what she is having”, it is nearly impossible to gain perspective to be able to speak life and truth. There is something so sneaky about comparison and jealousy. It eats away our capacity to be able to champion the grace and success in someone’s life. I find that Instagram is terrible for this culture. We feed the need for perfection and tightly filtered screens fit for a Pinterest world. We compare our daily struggles with others highlight reels and we fall over by the weight of its incessant perfection. When we stop comparing our today with someone’s tomorrow, we release ourselves into a space of acceptance. This is the breeding ground for championing another. When we are not threatened by their space in this world and we are able to encourage. And when we encourage, we grow.

Believing the Best

Have you ever wanted to give someone a piece of your mind and then later been told a different side of the story, that changed everything? I have. In fact yesterday, I got an email and I reacted strongly. I started to stamp out a quick, snide reply. Then I deleted the email, picked up the phone and rang my friend. Straight away she said, “Can you please delete that email, I have had the worst day ever.” Sometimes we just need to believe the best and champion women who are trying to make a difference. If you know anyone who is doing something that hasn’t been done before it is hard work. We need to encourage and support women who are pioneering new spaces. We need to believe the best. Encourage those who are leading us into new days. You never know who needs encouragement. Pick up the phone and have a chat. It will make all the difference.

When she gets what you have been praying for

There is nothing harder than to see a friend receive the thing that you have been praying for. We have walked seasons like this. When friends have been believing for a change in circumstance and it seems like something just lands in another’s lap. When we dig deep and encourage each other from a place of sacrifice it changes us. Our hearts soften, our lives are sown and we take the higher ground. When we encourage from this kind of deep place, its shifts the weight of the in-between in our own lives.

By Letter

Today I received an email from a lady I have never met about a book I wrote ten years ago. She was so kind and intentional in the email that she sent me. The thing she doesn’t know is that I have been sitting at my computer day after day, trying to write another book at the moment. And I am coming up empty. My brain is fuzzy, my two-year-old’s tantrums and the weather has been doing crazy things to my mind. When this email popped into my inbox, it was the motivation I needed to start again. To pull out my computer and believe again. When we champion other women’s voices, by writing the words we have been thinking it honestly makes the biggest difference. We will never know the difference that five minutes of intention have made. When we put words to paper and express gratitude, it is like we are giving a gift of inspiration to another.

Looking in her eyes

One thing I have been trying to change in my life is taking the time to look into people’s eyes. As I stand at the cafe waiting for my coffee or in the supermarket checkout. I am aiming to make it my impression, that I look into the eyes of the person who is serving me. I find myself saying this to my children often lately. Look me in the eyes. I want to tell you how proud I am of you. Look me in the eyes, I want to tell you I love you. We look down into screens so often, that we have begun to create a culture of looking down. When we look down, it speaks loudly with shame, indifference, and disrespect. When we listen with our eyes, we bestow respect and encouragement on another. When we look at each other and listen we exude encouragement.

Noticing changes

I have made it my goal to notice when someone wears something new or has a haircut. Especially people who I am only just getting to know. It is a simple way to encourage without being too personal. “Hey, You look amazing, your new haircut is awesome.” “Have you done something different you look great.” When we notice a change, we let them know that we have truly seen them. I want to see. I don’t want to just go through life in oblivion. We can train our eyes to notice the good things, not the negative ones. It is easy to see when someone is stressed and say “Hey you look tired.” It is harder to notice when positive and progressive change is made.

When we think something nice why don’t you speak it out

Lastly, but most importantly if you think something nice just speak it out. You never know who needs to hear they look lovely, or that you are grateful or that you love them. Maybe you have been thinking of them. Say it. Don’t leave words unspoken inside. Imagine if women championed women like never before. What amazing feats could be enacted across the earth. Imagine a company of empowered, encouraged workplaces. Imagine a group of school Mums who fist pumped every Mum that crossed their paths. Imagine a whirlwind across social media if we filled it wiencouraginging kindness. I think it could be a revolution.

And it begins with me.

Thanks for reading

Amanda Marie



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ten ways I am bringing inspiration back into my life


I was riding on the back of a motorbike in rural Indonesia, just a few short months ago and I realised something was very wrong. The wind was rushing through my hair, I was resting my head on my husband’s shoulder and everything within me should have been buzzing. This situation in the past would have filled me with adrenaline and my heart would have been racing.

As a creative, pioneering soul, my heart aches to rebel. It is like I have always been curiously designed to push the boundaries, not in an intensely negative way but an innovative edge to challenge the status quo. Honestly, I believe if we are not pushing boundaries, then we will be constantly seeking comfort and nothing new is birthed in this position.

It was this Thursday afternoon in Indonesia that I knew something needed to change for 2017 and that my time as a stay at home Mum after five years was coming to a close. It was a natural transition, as my now not so little first born Maximus was starting full-time school. My second born Liberty has that same I want to leap out of the nest innovative style like her Mum, so we have decided to put her into a pre-kindy program and I am stepping back into part-time work.

After a lot of processing, I have come to the conclusion that there are many reasons for my squashed adrenaline response on the back of the motorbike that day. One being grief, I realised that to shut down to pain was to shut down to joy. I also realised that the constant stimulation from little people’s questions and demands had depleted my creative heart. I also knew that tiredness and lack of solitude had zapped my inspiration tanks. Together, my husband and I have come up with a simple plan to refuel my inspiration responses this year with ten simple ways I am bringing inspiration back into my everyday life.



I am prioritising “rhythm over accomplishment”.

It is easy to get overwhelmed by the urgent rather than the important. The life of a parent is filled with urgent needs in front of our vegemite smeared faces and yes our attention is absolutely needed by those closest. But an empty washing basket, worn as a badge of honor, that is prioritised over a manuscript that is awaiting attention does not give me the same long-term satisfaction as expressing the gifts that lay dormant. I am pursuing a rhythm this year, where I am seeking the important over the urgent and saying no to those things filled with the obligations that drain. Five-minute journalling and reading every day, rather than a big binge once a week.


I am prioritising “connection over scrolling”.

There are many days that I cannot remember who contacted me where and what I am responding too. It is like social media has fractured my connection space and it used to be one of my strengths. I have messages waiting on Instagram and people texting me replies to something I posted on social media and facebook messages, tweets, likes, follows and comments. My brain is exploding from all the messages that are flying back and forth and it is changing my capacity to remember who I have spoken to about what. I have decided this year, that I am not going to feel the pressure to respond to every text, message, and invitation that flys at me. I am prioritising face to face connection and phone conversations with people. If anyone wants to communicate online with me I am asking them to email me and once a day I will respond via email. I have also disconnected email from all my different computers and screens. I am only having my email account on my laptop and will be unsubscribing from all the emails that do not add value. I am prioritising my connection with people and thoughtful responses over scrolling and half answers and emojis filled with rolled eyes and exhales.


I am prioritising “health over speed”.

My life as a Novice Mum has been categorised by vegemite toast on the run and coffee going cold in a cup. I have survived the last five years, by saying yes to all of you and my children over time walking, exercising and creating healthy boundaries with food. So once again I stand here at the beginning of a new year and I am faced with the weight I have carried around with me, as I have chased my children through life. I am choosing health over speed and apples over toast, water over Pepsi max and herbal tea over coffee.


I am prioritising “writing over pleasing”.

Social Media brings with it such instant gratification. Every time you like my post, my people pleasing nature is ignited and the loss of online engagement over the season when I turned my phone off, made me feel deep places of rejection. This year I am choosing to write instead of people please online. The requests, the reaching out and the conversations are all so important, but it has come at a cost and the cost is the voice that I have been developing each time I sit to write with intention and grace. This year I am promising myself to write more and people please less.


I am prioritising “music over noise”

I like to know what is happening in the world. With two little people listening to the news in all its glory, I have realised how deeply destructive our media is. Each morning I like to put on the news and listen to it as I make breakfast. I also have a habit of listening to the news at nighttime as I prepare dinner. This year I am changing that deeply engrained habit. I am choosing music, uplifting songs and atmosphere’s, over the systemic nature of the world and its media organisations. This decision is one of my hardest, as I feel like I am saying goodbye to friends. But I would prefer to read articles and books with a more balanced world view, that the way the media has turned.


I am prioritising “being present over perfect”

One of my greatest privileges of 2016, on that trip to Indonesia was reading a couple of books that were profound. I read Shauna Niquest’s book Present over Perfect and I think it was the grace shift I needed in this whole season of my life. Here is the link if you want to have a read. We have also decided in February to do a book club with Elaine Fraser, Jodie McCarthy and I with this book if you want to order and read along.


I am prioritising “listening over apologies”

This one is a hard one. My husband said this recently “Do you realise how often in a day you apologise my love?” Woah, a stop the car moment. I spend so much of my day teaching my children to say sorry and to stop and to sit in the corner, that I have become an apology machine. When I slow myself down, I have realised that I constantly apologise for my voice. So rather than say sorry, I am going to listen more and be slower to speak.


I am prioritising “space over clutter”

Yesterday we de-cluttered our spare room and we deep cleaned our pantry. The plastics cupboard got a good spanking and our fridge was emptied again. I am a serial de-clutterer, but I absolutely believe the only reason I am able to write today is because my space is prioritised. It is the simplest inspiration principle, but it is profound. This year I am once again prioritising buying quality over quantity and removing myself from the culture that more is more. Whoever dies with the most stuff does not win. I refuse to be drawn into this cultural phenomenon, that if my Instagram feed is full of the latest and greatest, that I am somewhat successful.


I am prioritising “making over buying”

In my pursuit of consuming less, I am taking the time to make things, rather than just buy them. I have pulled out my sewing machines more times in the last couple of months than I have in the last few years. Second hand to me is my delight and hand me downs are our sustenance. I refuse to mindlessly scroll the shopping centre, throwing stuff in my basket so I feel better, I am going to get my hands dirty and make food, clothes and I know I will find the satisfaction of making there.


I am prioritising “the pavement over the couch”

Last night as the sun was setting my husband dressed our family in their outdoor gear and pushed us all off the couch. We should have been having showers and settling in for the evening, but he forced us out to the beach and the result was profound. The whole way as the pavement stared up at me, I wanted to return to the comfort of the couch but getting active and breathing in fresh air is the best remedy for inspiration that I know. Drinking water, talking and walking is one of the greatest ways to connect as a family and I am prioritising the pavement this year over the couch.


What are you prioritising this year?

Welcome to my new series that I will be publishing every Friday of 2017, “ten ways with Amanda”. A series of articles that will be releasing each week encouraging inspiration and encouragement for our weekly lives.

Happy Creative and Inspired Year truth Seekers,

I’m hoping to write a lot more in this space this coming year.

Amanda Marie

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you have enough

Monday night dinners
Monday night dinners

This morning we woke slowly, ground coffee and walked thoughtfully through our morning routine. We fell onto the beach by nine and watch clouds roll past, chatting about nothing and everything in one breath. My two babes played on the sand and I floated softly in the ocean. Watching the sky change every minute with thoughts of fires, friends and what is truly important this year. If you had have asked me four weeks ago, I would have said, number one priority for twenty sixteen, to find our little team a bigger abode. Today that is the furtherest thing on my mind.

My mind quite emphatically has been reassuring my wandering heart, that we have enough. We have enough.

Enough room,

Enough toys,

Enough time,

Enough technology,

Enough towels, sheets, clothes, shoes, jewels, food, delicates.

We have enough.

How often are our days motivated by the culture of scarcity, rather than a culture of gratitude?

Do you rush hoping to fit more in, so that you can purchase the latest trinket?

Do you worry your kids will be rejected because they don’t have the outfit recommended by the most amount of likes on instagram?

Do you fret when walking into a social situation that you will be outed by your nineteen nineties hand bag?

We, those holding our iphones, ipads, macbooks, windows glittered technology we have enough.


There is a big enough line, drawn across our hearts and unless we are determined in defining it we can live our days accumulating things rather than people.

We can spend our days ignoring people in our present, whilst stalking people from our past. We scroll through hidden advertisements masked as people’s social media curated life, thinking that unless we have more, unless our house presents a pretty picture, unless we are decorated in finery that we are not enough.

My friend you are indeed enough, if you swam naked today in a beach filled with onlookers you are not only enough, but I am sure that you also have enough.

I remember so fondly the year that I did not buy any new clothes. It was the most fantastic season of growth in my whole life. I redefined who I was outside of layers that covered my soul and I lived free of approval addiction.

So as we step into twenty sixteen and a pile of carefully culled decorations from our jam packed little shack sits in the corner and everything within me wants to hoard up that jar in case one day I may need it and I stare at my cupboard assuring myself that I indeed have many things that I could wear, I am declaring across my life and yours that we have enough. We have enough and everything we need to grow, mature, stretch and become is within our reach.

The scarcity that echoes in our hearts saying we need more to be happy, we must have more to be fulfilled is a big fat lie.

What if this year we prioritised people and experiences over possessions?

What if this year we used generosity as a growth strategy rather than an obligation?

What if we became a river that gave away our possessions, without the feeling that they may never come back, but a river that shared our life sacrificially with others not counting the cost, but revelling in the rebellion?

What if our instagram following was not the measure of our success, but the amount we secretly gave to empower another?

My friend we have enough.

Enough clothes,

Enough space,

Enough possessions,

Enough technology.

Snuggle those who are closest to you and don’t fall into the trap that another toy or gift will win over their love. Time, kindness, grace, forgiveness these are the kind of currency that the world is indeed in poverty from.

Faith, hope, believing the best, loving the unlovable, putting our devices away and loving the ones that we are with.

This year I am hoping to….

Make generosity my growth strategy

What about you?

Do you believe you have enough?

Because honestly someone, somewhere is praying for that which we don’t even notice is a answered prayer of ours from long ago.

What is your enough line?


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you are enough

The farm
Eagle Rest, Dwellingup

Each day awakens across our Earth with the same number of moments. There are families in this very moment savouring each and every breath as they wait and watch their loved one pass, there are Mothers today regretting times when they said something that fractured their family apart. There are wives sitting without husbands, counting the days, seconds and milli-moments, hoping they could rearrange and go back to a place when what was lost could be re found. There are men crying at the charred remains of their beloved homesteads.

Every moment across our Earth, people are succeeding, people are fading, people are burying and people are birthing.

We each have the same amount of moments, but we each spend these moments very differently.

The last month for us, has been a crazy ride of delight and devastation. From losing loved ones, to welcoming favourites from overseas. From opening presents, to New Years reflections. From the bushes of the outback of Western Australia, where scorpions landed on friends legs, to winding back lanes in New Zealand, foraging to celebrate the life of a dear friend.

Tonight as I sit here and write, the farm where this photo was taken just a few short days ago, is just one town from a raging bushfire. Life is increasingly fragile and the more we give in to the delicateness of its trust, the more we struggle with our capacity to move forward into new days.

As I have traversed the highs and lows, the long plane trips and the slow, telling forrest highways, I have had a little something raging in my heart of hearts. A few words that change absolutely everything.

These words are not just for me this New Year I suspect, I am thinking they are for you as well.

Words that have haunted me, because if I was absolutely down right, disgustingly honest. I did not achieve either of my goals for twenty fifteen. Both of them remain unfulfilled. With every valid excuse in the world, I just didn’t pull them off.

How about you?

What about your New Year?

Has it been quiet?

Has it been devastating?

Has it been uneventful?

What about quietly inspiring?

The words that have been whispering to me in the wake of such a unexpected and dramatic end to twenty fifteen are these simple three words.




You are enough my friend.

My dear friend Ruthee has taught me more in her passing, than any moment of intense conversation that we have shared together. That life is so short, it is a vapour, it passes through our hands, leaving joy and questions in its wake.

What stops us often from stepping forward into days of deep satisfaction, is we spend our days looking backwards and trying to make sense of our past mistakes.

This New Year the greatest gift you can give yourself is to be kind, forgiving and gracious to yourself more than others. By telling yourself you are enough.

You alone are enough

You have nothing to prove to anyone.

Maya Angelou

We stumble and we fall, we step over and around people and memories, we are impacted greatly by grief and unanswered questions but one of the greatest hurdles to living a deeply satisfied life is always carrying the burden of shame and not enough-ness. (I know it’s not a word, but I like it).

Not only are you enough, but those who are closest to you, your kids, your husband, your friends, they are enough.

Isaiah 41:10 reminds me of this…

Do not be afraid for I am with you.

Do not be discouraged, for I am your God.

I will strengthen you and help you.

I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.

In the wake of seasons that don’t make sense, when you are unsure if you can keep walking into a New Year, New Day, New Season, New Month, New…new…new..

Be kind and forgiving, take it slow and be soft with yourself.

You are enough.

Lower your expectations of yourself and just walk.

Walk slow, walk kind, walk…walk…walk.

And if you haven’t taken time to reflect this New Year yet, then it is not too late.

Ask questions.

Forgive yourself.

Let go.

Step over.

It is a new day and you are enough.

I had so many plans about how I would launch twenty sixteen, with new looks and new ideas, but honestly for today, this is enough.

Join me in tagging your creative pursuits or what inspires you this year with the hashtag #inspire16





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Living a life that inspires others.

StrawberriesThe one word that describes my business philosophy is;

inspire (verb)
1. fill (someone) with the urge or ability to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.
2. breathe in (air); inhale
The word inspire means to breathe life into. It is a divine interaction that brings life and hope with future potential into ones everyday moments. Over years many different people have inspired me with creative innovation. As I have watched people grow and develop I have been overwhelmed by the beauty that they are bringing in their own unique way.

I absolutely believe everyone of us has a unique signature that we can bring to the world and it is in this place of purpose that light and love are accelerated.

I have been using a hashtag #inspire15 with the year ending on it (inspire14 etc). The whole intention behind this hashtag was to inspire others with what they are doing creatively, to be a source of hope for each other, to get out and just have a go.

Over the years of seeing people use this tool to encourage one another free from comparison and competition, I have realised a simple principle’s in business.

  1. There is enough room for everyone.
  2. There is enough inspiration and creativity available for everyone.

I think we sometimes act as though there is only a certain amount of information available for the small elite group who have the courage to reach out and act on their business dreams.

There is not. I promise there are enough customers, enough opportunities, enough ideas for every single one of you.

As I walk into the final week before our Inspire 15 retreat, I wanted to interview some of my amazing entrepreneur friends and ask them great questions about creativity and business.

Questions like;

What is your Greatest lesson/ failure you have learnt in business?

If you were to encourage someone just starting out in your field of expertise what would that be?

Attached in the e-zine I have interviewed twenty entrepreneurs, some our business owners have over 100,000 followers on Instagram, some of them have started amazing online social projects, they have published books, started psychology practices and some are very new.

So go grab a cup of tea and Click this link Online Magazine to download this E-zine that I have created with some my favourite Creative Business Entrepreneurs. (Open it up in ibooks on your ipad for optimised reading results.)

I hope you are as inspired as I have been.

Happy Days my friends