Chatting to Michelle Reeves about her happiness transformation habits method
- Mums Tips
- Mumpreneurs & Mums at work
- Published on Wednesday, 15 May 2019 17:02
- Last Updated on 04 December 2019
- Monica Costa
- 0 Comments
Last year at the Mumboss book launch party I met a lovely lady who impressed me with her emotional intelligence and kindness. That amazing woman turned out to be the successful certified life coach, author and podcast host Michelle Reeves. A couple of months later, she launched her own book The Happiness Habits Transformation in which she writes about how through personal development, therapy and the combination of eight Happiness Habits, she went from functioning to flourishing.
In 2008 Michelle Reeves left behind corporate life in the UK and moved to China for four years where her life fell apart. A traumatic birth and treatment for post-natal depression left her broken and searching for a way back to her former self. Michelle believes that everyone has their own special brand of magic and adores helping ambitious women to ditch self-doubt and super-charge their clarity, confidence, courage and consistency so they can fast-track their ideal life and business.
Her book has inspired me to make important changes in my life and live a more fulfilling existence thanks to inner contentment and mindfulness. I have become more courageous in facing difficult times in my life while still remaining happy inside.
I am honoured to have met and interviewed Michelle Reeves as well as to have provided quotes for her promotional campaign. I hope this inspiring chat helps you make fundamental positive changes in your life too.
Q: In the book you explain how you came up with the unique method to include new habits into our lives to improve our wellbeing. Can you give us a ’snapshot’ of that?
Michelle Reeves: Knowing the things that we need to do to make us happier and actually doing them are two different things. After all, if we’re honest we all know that eating junk food and not exercising enough is bad for us, but for whatever reason we find it hard to live more healthily. That’s often because these activities have become habits for us. Studies have shown that more than 40% of the actions we perform every day are habits rather than conscious decisions we make. Since 2009 I’ve learned a lot about the activities what boost my every day joy but those things didn’t make a strong, positive and long-lasting impact on my life until I made them habits too. And it was the repetition of those habits in an easily achievable routine that really made a huge difference for me. In the book I share Charles Duhigg’s fascinating insights into habit formation and the habit ‘loop’ that we can use to cement a new behaviour into our daily routine by tagging it onto an existing habit that’s already established in our lives.
Q: Who could benefit from your happiness transformation habits method?
Michelle Reeves: I wrote The Happiness Habits Transformation for anyone who wants to inject more happiness into their everyday life. I believe we all deserve to rebuild our daily routine into one that serves US, with time to focus on you, releasing yourself from the habit of negativity boosting your self-esteem and allowing you to dream your biggest most exciting dreams… and start living them!
Q: Could this method be applied to kids?
Michelle Reeves: Absolutely! I think all these habits could be applied as a family… becoming more aware of our thoughts and how they affect our feelings and behaviours, for example, could be useful for teenagers struggling to deal with a myriad of emotions. And having a regular gratitude and celebration practice is something that you could adopt as a family – perhaps around the dinner table at the end of the week.
Q: Can this method be applied to anything new we want to achieve in life?
Michelle Reeves: In Chapter 8 of the book I walk you through finding your ‘why’ and dreaming bigger dreams and I wrote this chapter precisely to help other people to do just that – dream big, exciting dreams and then go out there and live them! The key is to follow a step-by-step process that breaks down those big dreams into goals and actions that you can use to build momentum one day at a time, whether that’s starting your own business or running a marathon.
Q: How did you use your own method to the process of writing this book?
Michelle Reeves: First I set myself a clear goal with a deadline and broke the book down into chapters and word counts that felt realistic for me. Then I scheduled specific time in my calendar to write. One really important part of the planning was scheduling in time for research and getting sign off for quotes in the book from people like Jim Rohn and American long distance runner Kara Goucher – I definitely underestimated that, a key learning for me for next time!
Q: A word of encouragement to women who struggle with depression
Michelle Reeves: Everyone’s experience of depression is different, but I know when I was in that dark place, recognising that something had to change, I had to take a time out for me (without feeling guilty about it) to rediscover a happier, more authentic and truly successful me again, the hardest but MOST important thing I did was to put my hand up and admit that I needed help. It was so, so hard but it was the first step on my journey back to ME. And there are plenty of organisations that are out there ready to help, such as MIND and Pandas UK
Q: I love the chapter ’dreaming big dreams’. What’s your biggest dream, Michelle?
Michelle Reeves: My dream is that when Stewart and I retire, we get to spend 3 months travelling the world and 3 months at home and keep on doing that until we drop!
Q: How would you recommend to use this book for those who hate routines and habits in general?
Michelle Reeves: It’s funny, although we might hate routines our lives are still run by daily habits, even if we don’t realise it! But this book isn’t meant to be prescriptive, so I’d say read it with an open mind, take from it what works for you and leave the rest. It’s also important to think about how each habit could sit comfortably in your daily life and feel your way into it rather than trying to shoehorn them in one by one – your inner rebel will hate that!
Q: What’s your London secret?
Michelle Reeves: It would have to be one of my favourite hotels – The Baglioni in South Kensington. All the Baglioni hotels are stunning, but this one is like having a slice of Italian luxury closer to home.
Q: What’s your biggest extravagance?
Michelle Reeves: My hair! I have thin, naturally curly and very frizzy hair and I’ve been relying on the skills of my hairdresser Zoe and her team at Silhouette Du Barry for over 15 years – it feels like a second home to me!
Q: Who is your hero?
Michelle Reeves: It may sound smushy, but honestly, it’s my Mother. She has been through so much in her life but managed to raise three daughters, stay optimistic and live her best life throughout it all. I love her to bits and have so much respect for her.
Q: What’s next for Michelle Reeves?
Michelle Reeves: I’m working with a US company on an exciting new online course which we’ll be launching this year – so watch this space!
Monica Costa founded London Mums in September 2006 after her son Diego’s birth together with a group of mothers who felt the need of meeting up regularly to share the challenges and joys of motherhood in metropolitan and multicultural London. London Mums is the FREE and independent peer support group for mums and mumpreneurs based in London https://londonmumsmagazine.com and you can connect on Twitter @londonmums