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Interview: Amanda Mortimer talks about This is It! It's Your Life. Live It.

Queenstown-based Dr Amanda Foo-Ryland, writing under her previous name Amanda Mortimer, is an internationally Accredited and Board Approved Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) coach and her book, This is it! It’s your life. Live it is inspired by her vision to help people reach their full potential by making serious lifestyle changes. Andrea Molloy talks with Amanda about her book This is It! It's Your Life. Live It.


What stops people from reaching their potential?

In my experience people self-sabotage, life gets good and then it becomes derailed due to the choices we make. Also, people put limits on their abilities, we in NZ & the UK are raised with the tall poppy syndrome, we are taught to think small and act small, don’t shout about your successes, this results in us focussing on the negatives and limit our success.


How important are empowering beliefs?

These are so important, what a person believes about themselves, shapes their reality.

“I am …………. “

Whatever fills the gap will shape a person’s life, unfortunately we work with clients who fill the gaps with limiting beliefs, such I am not good enough, worthy enough, intelligent enough and the list goes on. The good news is that in three sessions we can turn this around by deleting the old belief and installing a brand-new empowering one.


What place does mindfulness have in everyday life?

More now than ever, life is fast, everything is immediate, noisy, bombardment from our phones, so taking time out and being mindful of how and what you spend your life doing is key. We are being influenced all the time, whether we know it or not so being mindful of what you are choosing to be influenced by so important.


How can NLP help achieve goals?

We help clients set their goals and put them into their future. The way NLP works is to engage the unconscious part of our brain, 95% of our behaviour is driven by this part of the brain, so to achieve goals we need to speak the brains language and be very specific about what that goal is. In NLP we use a model called SPECIFY, the BBC in the UK use the same model, it is far more detailed and creative than the old SMART model, it is fun to work with and easy to use.


What are your top tips for beating procrastination/creating new habits?

First thing is to ensure that you are not being a perfectionist, this is a fool’s game, it is procrastination in disguise. Waiting until you have all your ducks in a row, waiting until conditions are perfect before acting is a clue to the fact that procrastination is lurking. Once you know what need to happen then make it happen and know that small steps everyday are far better than one giant leap. In my book we have an award winning tool that won out of 1600 entries to building habits for life, simple and easy to use with great results.


What is your best advice for creating work/life balance?

Ask yourself this question, is what I am doing right now so important, is taking time for me with my loved ones more important? This will help with the balance, think of it like a see saw, we need to spend time at both ends, moving up and down but without investment in both then the weight leaves and we end up stuck at one end whilst the other disappears.


What do you enjoy most about writing/what is your writing process?

I talk a lot, speak at functions and train others to become coaches, I think of writing as the voice that goes with people. I write like I am sat on the sofa with a client, I use language that is easy to digest and understand. I have read heaps of NLP books and have found them to be very wordy and not so easy to grasp, so my writing style is a chat with a friend over a coffee. My process is to look at what I want to reader to feel when they have finished the book, then I reverse engineer with the tools and online resources to support the book to get them there.


Tell us more about your charity connection in Bali?

I volunteered at the Jodie O’Shea orphanage for a month and loved it, I spent time with Alison Chester a wonderful lady from Liverpool who set up the orphanage after being inspired by Jodie who lost her life after the Bali bombing. Alison sat with Jodie in hospital and was amazed at her bravery and kindness, she refused pain killers knowing others would need them more, she sadly died three days later. Jodie always wanted to have had her own children and her regret was that her parents would never have grand kids. Alison opened the orphanage in Jodie’s name and now she has 97 children. 10% of the profits from the book go directly to the orphanage and we sponsor a 16-year-old boy Agus who up until her was 10 had no education as he was in a mafia run orphanage. The children must work so they don’t go to school, now he can read and has just had an excellent report from school. He wants to be a motor bike mechanic when he leaves school, Bali needs lot of them! It costs $1500USD to support one child for a year, this enables them to stay at the orphanage, go to school, trips out and transport to and from school. You will receive updates, reports, pictures and have the opportunity to visit and spend time with the children, it truly is a beautiful place.

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