Workplace Wellness & Retreats  

Emotional Intelligence delivers real business smarts for the future - innovative workshop coming to Geelong

Posted on September 27, 2017 by Revitalize Lifestyle

Emotional Intelligence 101


You might know your area of expertise back-to-front and be a leader in your field.

But it's not what you know but how you understand yourself and relate to others that will give you the winning edge at work and in your personal life.

The term Emotional Intelligence refers to how well individuals handle themselves and each other, and the good news is it can be learnt. Specialists in the field two passionate locals, Melanie Kearsey and Jo Surkitt will share their insights at a one-day workshop in Geelong this November.

"With technology changing the way so many industries do business, one thing that won't change is how highly developed emotional intelligence can turn managers into truly effective leaders and, workers into deeply engaged employees," the pair say.

Having worked closely with high profile clients such as Cotton On, BP and Vodafone, they have developed a program that includes their best tips and tricks to help participants develop their own skill set they can use both at work and in their personal life.

Melanie says that she and Jo developed the program based on the strong demand from local businesses, “Our corporate clients kept telling us similar things, they’d say; we want our team to get along better, we want people to communicate more effectively and improve employee engagement, we want people to be able to manage their emotional state and to feel less stressed.  Jo and I heard loud and clear what our clients wanted to learn, and that’s why we’ve developed this program.”

Participants will learn how to manage how they think and feel, express themselves more assertively, navigate conflict, manage negative emotions, regulate their emotional state, and create positive personal habits and routines to boost time management and organisational skills.

Melanie and Jo will teach workshop participants how to manage stress, cope with fear & failure, develop meta-cognition strategies that involve noticing and managing your own thinking and developing skills to adopt more resourceful, constructive thinking and behaviours. Practical mindfulness, yoga and movement exercises will also be incorporated.

Managers will benefit from the course by learning how to increase employee engagement within the workplace as well as improving their ability to lead, inspire and influence people.  The program aims to boost workplace productivity, improve individual and group behavior and performance, and lower staff stress and absenteeism.  Anyone wanting to feel more optimistic, energised and motivated at work and in his or her personal pursuits will find the course valuable.

The Emotional Intelligence workshop will be held at the Novotel on Geelong's picturesque waterfront on  8th November. Participants will enjoy delicious meals from a menu designed by renowned nutritionist Michele Chevalley-Hedge.

They will leave the workshop armed with a wealth of material detailing the tools, techniques and exercises covered during the program.

Early bird bookings (before October 8) are on sale now Emotional Intelligence 101

 Why Melanie?

Melanie has a passion for teaching people how to manage their mindset and helping others grow. She has a Bachelor of Business Management and is a Certified Professional Coach and Workplace Trainer and Assessor.

Melanie has delivered several Emotional Intelligence workplace training and corporate coaching programs for companies across the Geelong & Surf Coast region.  Jayden Overall, a participant of the EI program she delivered for the Surf Coast Shire expressed his gratitude for being provided with the training.

 “This was the most beneficial thing to improve our performance that we’ve ever been taught.” 

Why Jo?

Jo has a background in corporate health and has been working in the wellness industry for more than 18 years after working in busy and highly competitive corporate companies. After several serious illnesses and health issues she has fully recovered and is happier and healthier than ever.  She runs a large range of professional development, wellness and lifestyle programs in the Geelong region to create a positive mindset and combat Stress and Burnout.

Sarah Jones from Vodafone had Jo run an emotional intelligence and positive psychology session for her team. 

"The positive change in our workplace since then has been remarkable. Jo's teaching style is easy to embrace and simple to use in our every day life."


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Top tips to remain healthy, happy and sane over the busy festive season ~ Enjoy a stress free Christmas ~

Posted on December 07, 2016 by Revitalize Lifestyle
Top tips to remain healthy, happy and sane over the busy festive season
~ Enjoy a stress free Christmas ~

Summer has arrived and it’s time for us to take charge of our own health and wellness especially through this busy season ahead.   Let’s kickstart the summer and allow ourselves to be our most healthiest and happiest self we can for this festive season. 

  • Take a moment to celebrate the wonderful events and moments of the year so far and acknowledge and release the more challenging or difficult times of the past year. What wonderful life lessons did you learn? Jot these down in a journal and make way for the awesome year ahead.                                                                                                                         
  • Reduce the BUSY-NESS in your life. So many of us tend to say we are busy. People ask how we are and we often say so busy, instead of saying we feel well, happy, challenged, productive, excited etc.
    BUSY doesn't necessarily mean being PRODUCTIVE and often we run around being busy not achieving our daily goals, aims or targets. Let's look at the 'Art of Doing Less' Quantity vs Quality. Use your time wisely, by scheduling in times of the day you check emails or social media, be strict and don't break the rules. Commit to yourself times of the day you have breaks or 'time out' to regain your focus and then you will find you will be more productive. By taking a short break your mind will be rejuvenated and you will notice you will get more of your tasks completed by doing less in a more productive and focused way, than spending longer periods on work in a tired, busy and hectic manner.  So take the challenge and reduce your busy-ness!!!  Who's in??
  • Write some old fashioned Christmas cards, it’s a great way to relax, reconnect with friends and family and allows you to recall and rejoice in the past year.
  • Keep hydrated! Whether it’s hot or cool it’s important to keep our fluids up whether it is water, herbal tea or freshly made fruit/vegetable juice. Start the day with a warm lemon water to cleanse & rejuvenate your body. Being fully hydrated will assist in stopping false hunger pains and also sugar cravings which often occur when you are thirsty. Drinking water may also improve your skin tone, reduce muscle cramps & headaches and improve your focus and concentration. If you are thirsty you are already a little dehydrated so keep a water bottle or flask close by.
  • Remember to take a few long deep breathes during the day, this slows your mind, increases oxygen flow to your brain and body and calms the mind and body.  It also helps to refocus and improve your concentration in busy times.  Meditation is also highly recommended especially through stressful periods.  Even if it’s only 5-10 mins a day your mind and body will thank you for it.
  • Sleep: we all know it’s important but often don’t get enough to rest & rejuvenate our body. Here are some reasons to get a good 8 hours of sleep, especially the hours before midnight: Sleep is great for your brain health, it improves your memory, concentration, enhances learning & problem solving. Research has shown it improves your physical health by reducing risk of heart disease, high blood pressure & diabetes and you may live longer.  Sleep also assists to stabilise body weight and lowers the risk of obesity. So grab your pjs, pillow and eye mask and get an early night.  Sweet dreams. Zzzzz
  • Get active outdoors in nature. Walk, jog or cycle. Not only is it great breathing in the fresh air of the ocean, rainforest, bush, farmland, river land or local parklands, it's great for the mind, body and soul. Your physical body will thank you, your stress levels will reduce and your spirit will feel a sense of peace and freedom. Take a deep breath in and take in the beautiful surrounds while you are exercising.
  • Spend quality, uninterrupted time with family. Watch your kids play, listen to the stories your parents and grandparents tell about when they were growing up. Do something fun with your partner. Uninterrupted family time is essential and important for our overall wellbeing.
  • Laughter:  They say laughter is the best medicine and it's true. Laughter reduces your stress levels, boosts your immunity, releases endorphins (the love & happiness hormone), decreases pain, improves mood, lowers blood pressure, strengthens relationships and overall feels great. So grab some friends or family and retell funny tales, tell some jokes, watch a comedy movie, find funny You tube videos of ridiculous things or go people watching, whatever it is laugh, laugh, laugh and have fun.
  • We often over-indulge with food and beverages over this time with all the festive parties.  Try and take days in between to cleanse with warm lemon water, fresh juices, broth or simple salads or fruit and keep in mind ‘moderation’ so you don’t feel bloated, full and lethargic after the big meals.  If/when drinking alcohol try and drink water in between and definitely after and if you have some Vitamin B at home, take one before bed to help with any signs of a hangover.
  • Dance: Yes dance, boogie and get into the groove.  At your christmas function put the Jukebox on and get up and dance.  You may decide to try the ‘Silent Disco’ in Melbourne or do a dance class like Nia, Zumba, Latin dance, Belly dance or Jazzercise or go out with some friends to a gig or club and dance the night away.  You could try ‘No lights, no lycra’ sessions which allows you to dance to your heart’s content in the dark with no one watching or you can turn on the music loud at home and dance around the house singing and busting a move.  Dancing is a fantastic form of exercise; it gets your heart pumping, endorphins flowing, your muscles working and your stress melting away.  And it’s so much fun.
  • Participate in exercise that's FUN. For example Stand Up Paddle Boarding, it's great for your core strength, balance and physical health, other fun activities that are great forms of exercise include: hula hooping, rock climbing, abseiling, juggling, skipping, ice skating, acrobatics or roller derby. Whatever it is enjoy and have fun with different types of exercise.
  • Grab some Vitamin D by getting a few minutes of sunshine in the morning or late afternoon. We need Vitamin D to keep our bones strong and to absorb calcium. Vitamin D enhances our moods and low levels can be a cause of depression.  By getting some fresh air will also help with clearing the mind and calming both mind and body.
  • Watch a good old Christmas movie, one’s I love at Christmas are:  Love Actually, The Muppet Christmas Carol, Miracle on 34th ST, National Lampoons Christmas Vacation, Polar Express White Christmas and the awesomely cute and fun Robbie the Reindeer clay animation series starring Robbie Williams.
  • Look after your feet. Our feet hold us up, carry us around and do so much for us which we take for granted so it's time to give some attention to our wonderful feet by having a foot bath/soak, book in for a reflexology or podiatry session or have a pedicure. Give your feet a massage; they will love you for it.
  • Brain Gym- Integrate your left and right brain to keep your mind healthy, focused and improve your memory and calm your mind of all of that Christmas shopping, parties, errands etc.  Some simple techniques include doing Cross crawl (tapping opposite knee to hand, lifting knees forward and then kicking legs behind)         Give you ears a full massage to switch on your brain and improve your focus and concentration.
  • Take up a mind, body and soul type of exercise such as Yoga, Qi Gong or Tai Chi.  Although gentle in movement it is a very powerful form of exercise for balancing your mind, body and spirit.   It can be done in a park, on the beach at home, anywhere! 
  • Add Super foods to your Lunch or Snack Box.

       Avocado, Blueberries, Nuts (Almonds, Walnuts, Pecan, Brazil nuts), Salmon, Kale,         and Kiwi Fruit are awesome to add to your lunches or snacks.  Action packed with           antioxidants and nutrients. 

  • Finally : Start thinking about 2017. Aim to achieve your goal/dream. Things that seem unattainable, unachievable or too difficult are often because we hold ourselves back with our ego and self doubt. We like to procrastinate or think we don't have the skills, time or ability but guess what 99% of the time we do. So take the challenge and go grab that goal or chase that dream you are passionate about. In the words of Audrey Hepburn 'Nothing is impossible The Word itself says I'm Possible' You will be very happy and satisfied with yourself.

Enjoy the festive season.

Jo Surkitt – Revitalize Lifestyle

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Children and their Emotions - Cool Kids Program

Posted on November 04, 2015 by Revitalize Lifestyle

Today I am looking at Children and their Emotions. Are children more anxious or sensitive these days or are we more aware of how our kids are feeling and experiencing situations?

I have found Brain Gym exercises have been great with children of all ages to help with dealing with stress, learning difficulties, mental health programs, improving brain function, memory and concentration and so much more. I have found talking about the child's day and asking how they felt about certain things that they experienced, also drawing or writing about their feelings helps to release blocked emotions and anxieties.  I have also found when children are getting frustrated or anxious a gentle head massage or holding your fingers gently on their forehead will often soothe, calm and refocus the child, they are then able to explain their emotions/feelings in a more productive way. A drink of water is another way to relax and calm a child (or adult) as the brain's electrical and chemical actions are facilitated by water and therefore improves concentration. Water enhances the brain's ability to be more efficient and effective when processing information and therefore will assist in mood fluctuations, anxiety and tantrums. 

There is also a great program run by The Macquarie University in Sydney called' Cool Kids' since 1993 through their 'Centre for Emotional Health'. This skill based program includes topics:
* Learning about feelings and anxiety
* Detective thinking, and learning to think more realistically
* Ways that parents can help
* Fighting fear by facing fear (stepladders)
* Learning to solve a problem
* Building assertiveness and dealing with teasing

Image from Cool Kids website.

Another great resource for parents with children that may have anxious tendencies is called 'Don't think about Purple Elephants' written by Susan Whelan. Susan's daughter had suffered from anxiety from a young age but through activities, tools and games she was able to eliminate her fears and anxieties. http://purpleelephants.com.au/  Thanks to ABC All in the Mind for information.

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