What does it mean to be a SOUL SISTER?

Well, let's start with an example, shall we. 

Emilie Biggar and Sheri Eddington have been friends for 6 years, bonding through a love of cooking. 

The best thing about being a Soul Sister, is that no matter where you go, your best friend is there for you.  These two have always been close, but from a distance -just like any good soul sisters are.   It's like you don't see each other for a while, but you can pick up where you left off, or you stay in touch with phone calls, Skype, texts and cards - these things strengthen friendships and help them cement into Soul Sistership. 

Spending time together on things you enjoy and like also helps build your sisterhood - and sharing a meal is a great way to bond - think chocolate and cake. So it would make sense then that actually cooking together would also help you build that connection stronger. 

Soul Sisters

Soul Sisters are also up for a challenge and are there to stick by each other when one or both want to accomplish a dream.  That is exactly what Emilie and Sheri are doing by competing in My Kitchen Rules.  

Together to the end... and with a stronger friendship for the experience, built on priceless memories and moments - these pair will go all the way. 

Who knows what opportunities and new experiences will arise for the pair, they are just enjoying their friendship and the experience it brings.    
How many Soul Sisters do you have?  Should you have more than one? 
Leave your comments below and let us know your thoughts. 
If you would like to have more fun and find even more soul sisters go here to find out how True Friends are Not Excluded and join Sister Talk to see how you can grow your friendships. 


Looking Forward - Into the Future...


Projecting into the Future - Looking Forward

Traditionally at this is a time we goals for a future self -  a set of goals for change.  Many of us just regurgitate the same all goals which we fail to reach.  Research on goal change has tended to show that when individuals are confronted with failure, they tend not to change their goals but rather to redouble their efforts.  Additional research demonstrates that persevering on unattainable goals is not likely to bring fulfilment.  Instead, we should acknowledge that it’s time to farewell these past possible selves and redirect our energy on constructing a self that can experience meaning, happiness and fulfilment in one’s present circumstances.  Focusing on possible new life directions is the hallmark of developmental change.

No. I’m not going to get into New Year Resolutions or Gaol Setting.  (For more information on these topics that check out selfcoach2success blogger). I want you to focus your gaze along your life timeline towards your future.  What do you see? How bright does it look?  How vivid is the picture? How much time have you invested in fleshing out the details and how often have you thought about it?  It’s time to explore your Best Possible Self for the year ahead. By creating a Best Possible Self narrative you create the most positive future for yourself that you can imagine.  The practice also gives you a new window into yourself, a fresh way of seeing your feelings, your motives, and what’s really important to you.  It also provides you with an enhanced  sense of control about your future course, strengthening your optimism, and adds meaning to your life experiences as you gain insight about what you can be doing in the present to move you toward your ideals. So get stated on creating a future narrative of your best possible self .

It involves two basic steps: visualizing yourself at a future moment in time having accomplished your goals and considering the strengths you’ll need to use to make that vision a reality.

Here are some steps to help guide you:

  • Set aside about 20 minutes in a quiet location for this exercise.
  • Select a future time period (e.g., 6 months, 1 year, 5 years from now).  What sort of things do you hope and dream for?
  • Imagine that everything has gone wonderfully well for you, that you  worked toward you goals with focus, persistence, fortitude, and energy.  And now you have established your own best abilities and created your life dreams. What would your life be like then? 
  • Imagine it in close details where you have worked hard and succeeded at accomplishing your life goals. You might think of this as reaching your full potential, hitting an important milestone, or realizing one of your life dreams. The point is not to think of unrealistic fantasies, rather, things that are positive and attainable within reason.
  • After you have a fairly clear image, write for 20 minutes about this Best Possible Self. Write about the details. Writing about your best possible self helps to create a common sense structure for the future and can help you move from the realm of foggy ideas and fragmented thoughts to concrete, real possibilities.
  • Be sure to write about the strength you displayed in this image and those you will need to manifest to make this best possible self a reality?
  • Over the course of the next four weeks, add to your narrative whenever you feel like it, taking as much or as little time as you like.

You may want to use this Dream Creation Diagram to broaden your picture so it includes everything you might want it to hold.

Year’s End – A time for Reflection


Year end is a powerful time – a time of great celebrations and gatherings, a time of reflection and resolution and hope for the future. A time of letting go of past goals and lost possible selves and investing in the present and future best possible self.

In ancient Roman religion and myth, Janus  a two head god was the god of Reflection on the Yearbeginnings and transitions, and thereby of gates, doors, doorways, passages and endings. He is usually depicted as having two faces, since he looks to the future and to the past. The Romans named the month of January in his honour. As a god of transitions, he had functions pertaining to birth and to journeys and exchange, war and peace and he was also concerned with travel.

On December 31, the Romans imagined Janus looking backward into the old year and forward into the new year. This became a symbolic time for Romans to make resolutions for the new year and forgive enemies for troubles in the past. 

The period between Christmas and the New Year is a great time for self-reflection- A time to look back over the past year and a time to plan for the year ahead.

Reflecting on the Past – Looking Back

As we look back over the past year we have two alternatives :

  1. An abundant mentality (glass half full to over flowing world view);  or
  2. a deficit mentality (half empty world view).

I prefer the former view, directing my energy and attention to the positive outcomes, progress or learnings I have made during the year.  I focus on what worked, what went well, and what I feel was successful. I've discovered that this strategy is critical to building my emotional resilience.

One of the other things I’ve learned is that the only thing I have control over is how I tell my story -- how I interpret my experiences and make sense of them. If I create a story that is one of learning, growth, and empowerment, I feel better.

We design our lives, in part, by the stories we tell ourselves and others. We create our realities through these stories.  This is especially true when we experience change, and perhaps change that we didn't initiate and that initially doesn't feel good.   We can tell a "victim story" such as: “When you move towns it’s difficult to make new friends.  People are not interested in including new people into their circle. The people I would like to befriend just don’t seem interested or reject my offers of connecting”.  Can we tell another story; such as “Making new friends requires reaching out and taking a risk.  Relationships take time and effort to build. They also take energy and opportunity.” Which one of these interpretations feels better to you? In which story might you have more control?  Which story will serve you best?

We can tell stories about the past and we can design stories for our future that can lead to our own personal transformation. A turning point in my life was when I began to consciously work on renovating my own stories which weren't serving me -- they weren't energizing me to get up in the morning and focus on opportunities to connect with other women.  

I made excuses for not reaching out, I blamed others when I felt disconnected, and I built walls around myself. As I began reinterpreting my reality, my daily life changed, my friendship circle improved, and I felt happier. 

I went from:   Creating a circle of true friends is hopeless; it's too hard, and there’s no way I can build meaningful reciprocal connections, to: I can and will build relationships where I am valued, appreciated, welcomed, and respected?

So how are you telling the story of your past 12 months?

In Gregg Krech’s book, Naikan: Gratitude, Grace and the Japanese Art of Self-reflection (Stone Bridge Press, 2002), he suggests using the following three simple questions to reflect on our relationships, or some other theme:

  1. What have I received from _____?
  2. What have I given to ________?
  3. What troubles and difficulties have I caused _________?
  1. I’d recommend substituting the last question with

“What have I learned or how have I changed by the circumstances of my life? as it focuses on a growth and a positive personal narrative.

These questions were originally developed by a Japanese man, Yoshimoto Ishin, who developed the method of self-reflection called Naikan. Naikan means “looking from the inside.”

Other Questions Prompts to help with your reflection About Relationships

  1. Who were the three people who had the greatest impact on your life last year?
  2. Did anyone close to you give birth (literally or symbolically)?
  3. Did anyone close to you die (literally or symbolically)?
  4. What important relationship improved the most?
  5. What important relationship suffered the most?
  6. What event merited celebration?
  7. What event appalled you?
  8. How did you positively influence the next generation this year?
  9. What well-known person, dead or alive, influenced you the most this year?
  10. Who made you laugh the most this year?

If you’d like more reflection prompts visit “New Year's Reflections and Resolutions: How to End the Year Mindfully (with 100 Discussion Questions)” by Carly Sullens

New Years ResolutionsIf one of your New Years Resolutions is to make better connections and strengthen relationships, connect with us by joining Soul Sister Talks and begin a fasttrack to friendship course. 

10 Tips To Help A Friend In Need


Have you ever had a Wake Up Call that got you wondering -  How to Help  a Friend In Need?  

For all my friends, whether close or casual, just because.  One of the longest post I will ever do, and the most real too.  Everyone will go through some hard times at some point.  Life isn't easy.  Just something to think about - did you know the people that are the strongest are usually the most sensitive? Did you know the people who exhibit the most kindness are the first to get mistreated? Did you know the ones who take care of others all the time are usually the ones who need it the most? did you know the three hardest things to say are "I love you, I'm sorry and HELP me".? Sometimes just because a person looks happy, you have to look past their smile to see how much pain they may be in. To all my friends who are going through some issues right now - lets start an intention avalanche... to give a moment of support to all those who may have family problems, health struggles, job issues, worries of ant kind and just need to know that someone cares.  Do it for all of us  Message from a Facebook  Friend - perhaps a call for help)

A Wake Up Call That Asks How To Help A Friend In Need


I got a wake up call this morning from a dear friend who posted the above on Facebook. As she is a frugal poster I was intrigued to see what she had written.  I don't think she'll mind me sharing it with you as it made me sit up and take stock of how often I may have a friend in need around me who I might be neglecting or overlooking because they appear to have it all together or because I'm distracted with my own problems.  After reading it, I wondered if she was talking about herself as she is a a strong, caring and very kind person who readily gives of herself to all her fiends and family.  It made me wonder what type of friend I was and was I taking her and others for granted.

Do you know when or how to Help A Friend in Need?How to Help A Friend In Need

In the current economic and political climate (unemployment, massive numbers of refugees fleeing political persecution and seemingly unsolvable wars) we can  all suffer from compassion fatigue or just tune out to others and their problems.  The barrage of unending media coverage of the world of woes  can desentisize us to the pain and suffering that is all around us.  We can become that friend in need, rather than be a help to a friend in need or comfort in crisis.

So how do we shake off the apathy and open our eyes to the needs of those around us?  How do we show genuine care and concern without being intrusive and pushy?  A difficult line to tread with those we love and those who appear unloved.

10 Tips To Help A Friend In Need.

  1. Listen to the other person.
    Often times when we are communicating with others we focus on what we want to say when they finish speaking so we don't really hear what they are trying to communicate.  Or we are thinking about something else altogether.  I know I've been on the phone to a friend and I've been thinking the whole time about what I'm going to cook for dinner. I remember a classic example of this occurred one day when a group of friends got together to fund raise for a good cause.  We had been hard at it for a couple of hours and were really making great progress.  During the business of the day she received a phone call from another lady. I could hear my friend using hum, yeah and that's great - when the phone call was suddenly cut short.  When she got off the phone she told us she had said "yeah that's great" when the caller had said her daughter had just broken her arm.  Ooops - she had defiantly been distracted during that call.  You can imagine how embarrassing that was for my friend and how unheard the other lady felt.  
  2. Just be there and Observe
    Look for signs that might indicate that your friend is going through a rough patch such as being snappy, hanging out less or withdrawn. 
  3. Discuss what matters to others for awhile.
    Put your own interests on hold.  People appreciate it when others clear time and space (not talking or doing anything) to enable them to open up.  It demonstrates that you care about them and what they have to say matters.  It's difficult for someone to disclose their troubles if you are rushing out the door as they speak.
  4. Encourage your friend to talk through the pain.
     Watch your verbal and non verbal language.  That is, use an open posture and look like you are interested in what they are saying.  Use minimal encourages such as um,, yes and head nods.  Remember to  ask open ended questions to help your friend explore their issues in greater depth and to reflect back what you understood them to have said.
  5. Don't Judge:
    Sometimes what is a mountain to one person is a mole hill to another. We should not be making a judgement about the validity of the problem based on our own subjective assessment of the situation. The other thing people do and I've been caught out too is to say: "that's nothing compared to what I'm going through" or "  So and so also had that problem and they did..." Stay focused on your friend and the issues she/he is having right now.
  6. Offer suggestions if appropriate: Remember if you're offering advice to be sensitive to their needs.  You are not their mother or boss so don't go ordering them about. Also as we are all different so are our responses to different situations.
  7. Check in regularly: Don't just hear the problem and then assume that it's all fine and dandy just because you heard about it once.  Keep in touch, in person or by electronic devices, to keep abreast of how your mate is coping or if things have improved or gotten worse.
  8. Don't gossip:  
    Your friend has shared their story and pain with you not the whole world.  It's their issues and up to them to discuss with others if they please. Don't assume that just because someone else appears to know about it that they know it all.  Keep your mouth closed unless they are placing themselves or others safety at risk.
  9. Encourage your friend to seek professional help
    If the issues are beyond the type of support you can offer encourage seeking professional guidance. Also if you believe that your friend is suffering from anxiety, depression or may be considering suicide then encourage therm to seek help.  More information on these topics can be gained from the Beyond  Blue webpage.
  10. Step Out of Your Comfort ZONE:
    Reach out to others that you don't know, yet also need a friend's help by:
  • Volunteering 
  • Paying it forward
  • Doing a random act of  Kindness
  • Sending a Card

 I'd love for your ideas on helping friends when they are feeling down. What has worked for you? What has been some definite  No No's?

If you'd like to learn more about Soul Sister Circles and how they can help you create lasting friendships.. just click here to get more information, or like our page on facebook and connect with Linda or Merna. 


Friendship is NOT how much we think 
we like each other; it’s how much of a 
pattern two people have in practicing 
the positive behaviors of friendship..


Aristotle categorizes friendship in three different ways.

Friendships of Utility  -

Friendships of Pleasure

Friendships of the good.

Let me define them for you and as I do, I would like you to consider where your friends fit in…

Friendships are Fragile.  

Should the purpose for which the friendship was formed changes (as does happen over time) – these friendships tend to end.   

Think now of past friendships that were formed at a specific point of your life.   Think of that time you joined the gym, or changed jobs, or moved town.  Or when your children left a school.   

Are you still in touch with those people?   Life changes and ties are more than likely broken.

Friends of utility (those people who you know for a purpose) are most likely to not remain in your close contact list.  So to with friends of pleasure.   These are friendships were you have a common pleasure interest – a sport or hobby.  If you change your hobby, give it away, miss a few meetings, or take up something new – friends of pleasure go their own ways.    Think of pre-children sport – all of a sudden you have kids and things to do and sport subsides.  Over time you lose contact with these friends, for a variety of reasons – too busy, and also because they now have different interests too you..

Friendships for the Good,  are a completely different kettle of fish.  

They are formed possibly in childhood or adolescence and exist so long as the friends continue to remain virtuous in each others eyes.    Friendships of the good are based on experiences and intimacy.  (the good news is, with a Soul Sister Circle - you can grow these friendships easily.) 

Can you recall a time when you reconnected or ran into a friend from long ago, how easy was it to fall back into that close friendship, just like it was yesterday.

These friendships are based on experiences ( your first kiss, you went to school together, band camp) – so it is easy to rekindle the intimacy that was once held.

Friendships of the good require time and intimacy.  Opening ourselves up to the world (or a select few people in it) – allows us to develop trust and grow strong friendships.  To truly know someone, you must have deep experiences with them, and close connections.  

Read more at Philosophy Now about the wonder of Aristotle’s friendship thoughts

If you are seeking to begin a Friendship for the Good,  reach out and connect with us and enquire as to how we, here at Soul Sisters can assist you. 

Yours in friendship 

Linda & Merna 

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