King's Daughters Conference 2013, 49 days to go!

I wrote a blog post with 10 Reasons to Join Us at 97 days to go!  Those ten reasons still stand and here are a few more to blow you away - see the day plan below.  Actually, it would be really silly not to come to this year's conference! 

10:30   Registration and fresh coffee provided by Ethical Additions

11:00   Live music and dancing to TITANIUM with CCDA and Anna Tharia
             Acoustic worship with D7 Band

11:30   Inspirational talk with Thoko Obare, Destiny Temple
12:15   Inspirational talk with  Charlie Blythe, Hillsong 

13:00   Picnic Lunch

14:00   Gospel choir with Instruments of Praise

14:30   Video Interviews:
             Alive in Ministry - Ali Bates
             Alive in Business - Wanja Odhiambo 

15:30   Session 4 Breakout Sessions:
             Lindsay Bruce, A Way Out
             Jaylene Howell, Trinity Cheltenham
             Jill Chitty, Entrepreneurs Circle
             Adrian Malpass, Emotional Intelligence

17:00   Dinner Break with African and Brazilian cuisine and 
             live music with Daughters of Davis and Anna Tharia Piano

18:30   Zumba demonstration with Rachel Ainslie
             Acoustic worship with D7 Band

19:00  Inspirational talk with Angela De Souza
Entertainment  |  Worship  |  Food  |  Inspiration  |  Business Growth | Children's Fun | Beauty Parlour | Stalls for Shopping - we have thought of it all so you can have a great day!  Don't wait, book your place now, only 400 places available and tickets have already started selling in January.


Where I Live

Every morning my daughter, Lorah-Kelly, and I go for walk together around the lovely streets of Battledown.  It is very hilly so a great workout for us!  This morning however, we both overslept (yes we live in different houses) and so had to motivate ourselves to go for a walk.  To add some excitement to our routine we decided to walk on the lovely Leckhampton Hill! It was such a beautiful morning and the views were amazing.  I marveled over each wild flower and each tree.  I gasped at the butterflies that were out in full force and savoured the sounds of the chirping birds.  The more I encounter the awesome creation that we live in the more I love the God that made it.  It is very difficult not to love Him when I see all the beautiful things that He made for us to enjoy.  I honestly think it takes more faith not to believe in God that it does to believe in Him.  It would be the same as if you marveled at an amazing painting but denied that there was a painter.  I am always left breathless when I contemplate the complexities and beauty of nature.  Below are some shots of our morning walk which turned into an early lunch at Pittville Park too!  Enjoy.

Cheltenham from the top of Leckhampton Hill

I couldn't decide which photo was best so added both

Oh and a photo through the wild grasses had to be included of course!

The trees in what I call the forest are simply gorgeous.

The big sky on this particular spot always gets me - it is soooo beautiful!

Wild flowers are in full bloom along with many butterflies, bees and other creepy things.

Lorah captured the old barn while I captured her capturing it.

A photo looking up at the huge tree does not do it justice but it is beautiful

Lorah capturing the park

The Central Cross Cafe in Pittville Park

The sun shining through the big tree

And here is Lorah's post based on the very same morning :)


Being a Woman in Business - Who Feels the Fear and Does it Anyway

King's Daughters - Being a Woman Business - Angela De Souza
Let me just say, right from the start, if you are in business and you don’t have fear, then you are probably not really in business but more likely have a hobby that generates a bit of income.  Seriously!  Business is risky and fear is a normal part of everyday business life.  Having fear is not a weakness but giving in to fear is. 
    Courage is the opposite of fear.  Why?  - Because it takes courage to go ahead even when you are afraid.  There are two trains of thought on this subject.   Some say that courage is not the opposite of fear because fear is a state and courage is an action.  Those that think this way see peace as the opposite of fear.  Other however, says that courage is the opposite of fear because you feel the fear and do it anyway.  I say it is both.  I also say that it is different in each situation.  Some situations require that you calm your fears and attain a state of peace before proceeding.  Other situations means that you are terrified out of your wits but you still go ahead because somewhere deep down inside you know (or think) that it is the right way to go.  Or, perhaps you just close your eyes and hope for the best!  No matter what situation you face, you will know that you are either the ‘feel the fear and do it anyway’ sort of person or you feel the fear and hold back.  I can almost guarantee you that those that hold back are in still in hobby business or small business stage or are still planning a business that they might never actually start while those that feel the fear and do it anyway are much further ahead.  I can also almost guarantee that if you interviewed any multi-millionaire business woman that they will share their stories of feeling the fear and doing it anyway.  If you want to get ahead in business you must be comfortable with facing and pushing through your fears. 
The dictionary describes fear as “An unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.”   Well if that’s the case, I face fear every week of my life.  There is always a time in my week when I get a horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach because of something someone has said or done.   This is the most basic and most common fear, the fear of not being liked.  As I said, I face this one every week and every week I can either shrink back and quit or put it behind me and move on despite the fear.  This is probably one of the most common fears that we have to face.  People say mean things, people threaten us, and people dislike us or want to threaten legal action of something silly.  No matter how many people like us and enjoy doing business with us, it is the ones that don’t that can affect everything. 

“Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.”  - Psalm 119:105

Facing your fear here means that you don’t care about the opinion of every single person that you encounter, because opinions vary.  The only opinion that counts is God’s.  If He is pleased you have done well and if not then best say sorry and try again.  You cannot lose if your motivation is to please God.  How do you know if you are pleasing God?  You use the Bible as your plumb line.  The Bible is your standard and if you know you have failed that standard then you need to ask for forgiveness and change.  If your accuser says something that is not true, as long as you have maintained standards of God to the best of your ability, then you don’t have to fear.  As long as you keep your life and your business life (which should be the same thing anyway) in line with the word of God then you have nothing to fear and you should not allow what you accuser has to say to take root in your heart.  
    Other fears can include risks, financial decisions, people decisions, changes and so much more.  They can range from small every day fears like the one mentioned, to fear or failure to huge fears such as total destruction.  No matter how ‘huge’ you deem the fear to be, they are all the same really as they all occur in your mind and can be controlled in your mind.  Fear is the emotion but what counts is that action that you choose to take despite the fear.  Many people are ruled by their emotions but we cannot afford to allow our emotions to run our businesses.  Fear can help us take caution and at time help us to think carefully about what we intend to do, but fear is not the decision maker, you are! 

“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?”  - Psalm 118:6

The dictionary describes courage as “The ability to do something that frightens one.”  One way to have more courage is to let less frighten you.  If you keep things in perspective, nine times out of ten you will realise that there is less to fear that you think.  The most important thing in business is not to hold back because you are too scared to move forward.

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”   - Joshua 1:9   

Fears That Can Be Avoided 
There are some fears that you can avoid most of the time.  Here are a few examples but you need to consider your own life and business and create your own list:

1)    Financial Fears

Do you have a clear financial plan?  Do you have a savings account for your business?  Are you careful in keeping your income more than your expenses?  Are you avoiding debt?  If you answered no to any of these questions then you are probably suffering with a dose of financial fear.  Your business can fail if you don’t know how to manage your money.  Don’t live in the clouds thinking that you can live on faith and not have to worry about where the money comes or where it goes to.  You need to become excellent in financial planning and management to eliminate unnecessary fears in this area.

2)    Sales Fears

Do you get out and meet people?  Do you network?  Do you have a good marketing strategy?  Do you make phone calls and ask for business?  Do you advertise?  If you answered no to any of these questions then you are probably suffering with a dose of sales fear.  This is when you love the work you do but no one knows you do it and no one is buying your products or services.  Again, your business can fail if you don’t actually sell what you have to offer.  Take time to invest in your business by learning to sell.  Sales, marketing and advertising are all different but all achieve the same thing – they grow your business.  You need all three in place so that you can get the most out of your business.  Don’t be a fool and think that because you are good at what you do you will automatically succeed.   Sales is nothing to fear, it is simply telling people what you do and how what you do can help them solve their problem.   Why would anyone not use what you have to offer?

3)    Time Fears

Do you manage your time?  Do you have a clear focus for what you need to achieve in each day?  Do you set boundaries for your time?  Do you stop work at a particular time and enjoy a social life?  If you answered no to any of these questions then you are probably suffering with a dose of time fear.  Your business can fail if you don’t know how to manage your time.  Small business burnout is common these days, that is because a small business owner has to be good at everything from making the tea, to bookkeeping, to sales and marketing, to deliveries, to training and so much more in addition to actually doing the work itself.  It’s easy to feel like you are too busy, have too little time and never get anything done.  It’s a small miracle that business owners can even survive the early days.  The great news is that you don’t have to live in fear that you will run out of time.  You can control time.  You can decide what you do and when you do it.  You can fit everything that you need to into each and every day.  It’s your choice and if you are running around like a chicken without a head it is because you are not choosing what to do with your time.  Invest in some time management or some mentoring to learn how to make better use of your time.

All in all, there is little that we actually have to fear in business.  It’s best to sort out the unnecessary fears so that they don’t exist and then for the rest, have courage, feel the fear and do it anyway!

Find out more about Being a Woman in Business here or host your own Girl's Night.  We also have a monthly business networking event called Women in Business, find our more here


Amy the Winner

Amy had her very first sports day today and won her very first medal!
How exciting. Well done Amy :) xxx


Being a Mother - Who Trains and Teaches

Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.   
- Proverbs 22:6

This verse has comforted me many times when I have worried about my children.  I know that even though they sometimes make poor choices, I have trained them well when they were little and they will find the right path in life as a result.  Training a child means that you help them to develop their skills and discover their strengths and weaknesses.  Teaching children to make choices, suffer consequences to poor choices and to reap the rewards of a choice well made is a very important part of their training.  The worst thing you could do as a parent is to shelter them from all consequences and failures.  Failure is good and a necessary part of the learning process.  Allow your children to make mistakes and teach them what to do with their mistakes when they have made them.  Children who grow up fearing mistakes and consequences will struggle with things such as faith and risk.  They will spend their life playing it safe and miss out on so much of life.  Allowing your children to make mistakes also teaches them grace and patience.  It’s also important to allow them to feel the weight of their decisions and mistakes.  Don’t allow them to make mistakes and then remove the consequences from them, that will be counterproductive and they will not learn much at all.

The Bible gives us an idea of how involved we need to be with our children.  Training and educating our children is not the responsibility of the Sunday School teacher, school teacher or any other teacher.  We are supposed to be so involved in our children’s lives in such a way that we take full responsibility for their training and education.  If we do not take responsibility for their instruction then they will learn things elsewhere and who know what they will learn.  It’s perfectly acceptable to allow the school to instruct the children in academic matters but don’t assume that your children will learn the things of the Lord from other people too.  In fact, they might learn things but not the things that you believe to be true.  Taking time to be involved all aspects of their training as well as their spiritual upbringing is essential.  
Ephesians 6:4 says, “And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.”  It seems that lack of training about Godly things can lead children to frustration, exasperation and even anger.   Our children need to know that there is a God and that He is a good God.  They need to know about Him and know Him.  According to the thesaurus, wrath's antonym is "happiness" and "love" which means that with proper training and admonition of the Lord, our children will grow in happiness and love.  Isn’t that a beautiful thought?  There is definitely something beautiful land peaceful about teaching our children about God and His ways.

There are four main areas that we can focus on when training and teaching our children:  1. their natural gifts and talents, 2. their character strength and weaknesses, 3. their general knowledge and life experience and, 4. their spiritual growth.  

Natural Gifts and Talents
    A big part of training your child is to observe them, to study them, so that you can find their natural abilities and gifts and encourage them to purse what comes naturally.  It is far easier for them to work with their natural talents than leave them frustrated with trying to become someone they are not!  When you notice something that they do well, take time to point it out and encourage them in it.  The simplest things can be an indicator of a natural inclination such as keeping their room tidy could mean that they are naturally organised and possibly could have the gift of admin and management.  If you notice this, give them a task to see if this is one of their talents.
    Music and art can be picked up from an early age too.  If you have toy instrument in their toy box, see if they spend time tinkering with them or if they show no interest at all.  Do they prefer to play in the garden or on the computer?  Try to tell the difference between an actual computing desire to simply playing games – you never know, you could have the next Bill Gates on your hands. I could list every profession here and the starting point for each, but I am sure you can figure that out for yourself.  The key is to observe your children; they all have something special locked away inside of them.  Try to draw it out.

Character Strength and Weaknesses
    It’s never too soon to learn about your child’s character.  Each and every moment is an opportunity to help them grow in character.  Good qualities should be rewarded and encouraged so that they know that they are good.  Kindness, gratitude, sharing, helpfulness and all these sorts of things are good character and if you want them to keep it up, reward it and encourage it.
    The same is true for poor character and weaknesses.  It might not be necessary to scold them for all the weaknesses but perhaps use each instance as a teaching opportunity.  Sit down with your child and explain why their character weakness is not acceptable and teach them how to overcome it.  If they are only punished but never taught then their character flaws will not be changed but will only be suppressed.  This is why some many children struggle through their teen years.  Their suppressed character flaws rise up and assert themselves as they gain freedom and independence from their parents.

General Knowledge and Life Experience
   Another area of instruction is in our passing on of knowledge.  It is wonderful when parents and grandparents take time to pass on what they have learned in life.  Music, sports, academic knowledge, housekeeping, financial management, farming, entrepreneurship and so much more can be taught and passed on to our children from a very early age. Children who receive this sort of training have a much better chance of leading a successful life with meaning and purpose than those that don’t receive this sort of instruction.  As parents, let’s not take what we know for granted but let’s pass it on to our children.  Even if they don’t follow in our footsteps, at least we know that they had options and could make a wise and educated decision about their future.

Spiritual Growth
    Teaching your children about spiritual matters is the most important teaching you could ever give them.  If they understand that they this incredible side to them and the ability to connect to the living God, they then will gain a freedom that even many adults never attain.  The Bible is a book filled with life changing principles.  It was written for us because God loved us so much and wanted us to know Him, and to know how to live the life He created for us, well.  Knowing, understanding and applying the Bible to our life will help us to unlock our potential and purpose.  Teaching our children, as we grow and learn, only means that they will have a head start in life.  Teach your children from as early as possible to love God, to love His Word and to talk to Him naturally and freely whenever they want.  You will see them flourish in a whole new way and live life on a different level.

Find out more about Being a Mother here or use this material to host your own Girl's Night.