If you're interested and intrigued about what Landscaping Your Life is all about and how it can help you if you're struggling, stressed, overwhelmed or don't know what to do the Landscaping Your Life podcast episodes will help bring it more alive (Apple/Spotify and you'll find an index here) - so too my chats on other people's podcasts - where the breadth and depth of questions really excites, inspires and challenges me.

With my interviews on other people's podcasts coming more frequently I'm going to share them here on a monthly basis - with all those undertaken prior to September 2023 being found here, October 2023 here, November 23 here, December 23 here and Jan / Feb 24 here. Do keep an eye out on the LYL blog for future month's interviews.

I loved these conversations - do pick one and have a listen and let me know what you think alison@alisonsmith.co +44(0)7770 538159

Do also get in touch if you'd like me to be a guest on your podcast talking about all things Landscaping Your Life and how language and metaphor can really help your listeners to get back on track when they're struggling alison@alisonsmith.co

The special series of my Landscaping your Life with Alison Smith podcast going live this week aligns with the Chelsea flower show and talks you through the seven keys to having a buzzing life. (You can listen to the podcast here - spotify / apple.)

If you're wanting a copy of the article with more detail about the seven keys you'll get it by signing up for my newsletter - here.

During the short series of episodes I promised a few bits n bobs of information, namely

If you enjoyed the series do please follow the podcast and I'd really appreciate a review too.

In today’s blog I’m sharing a new tool from the Landscaping Your Life coaching and problem solving toolkit that helps you get that sense of being in the right place at the right time back.

The premise behind the technique being - if you can get that sense of place and connection back you’ll feel more able to make the right choices about what to do about a situation you’re grappling with.

Before that though - happy equinox and rewilding day and, if you’re reading this later in the week, happy international day of forests too.

Wow - that’s a lot of patterns from nature that we can apply to our lives. Which I’m sure you already know is the premise behind the Landscaping Your Life process – where instead of going over and over the story, content and data of the situation (and potentially getting more overwhelmed and stressed) we use metaphor to help us see the patterns of behaviour that are holding us back and even use it to realign those patterns too.

If you’re struggling with a situation in your life patterns from equinox might, therefore, be inviting you to think about

Or the patterns from the forests inviting you to think about

Or the patterns of rewilding inviting you to think about

On Friday last week, and as a corporate partner for SCOTLAND: The Big Picture, I attended a Rewilding Nation event where they showed the film Why not Scotland? Inviting us to consider that if across mainland Europe nature is making a dramatic comeback – could Scotland be next (See link to find other dates to see the film or to get in touch to have your own showing locally).

As I watched the story of Flo as she visits many European countries doing great things to rewild their landscapes I had a insight about our own inner landscapes.

After all for 24 years this month I’ve been inviting people to pick a landscape that depicts the current situation they’re grappling with or feeling unresourceful about, and then asked them to make changes to that imagined landscape in order to feel more resourceful.

To do this I have generally allowed the landscaper to determine the changes they make – even if I have made some suggestions based on observable and known patterns in nature.

The film, however, inspired me to think about

What happens if our inner landscapes need rewilding for us to feel more resourceful?

I’ve trialled it a few times since then and have been blown away with the insight that has emerged.

And today on LinkedIn for Rewilding day that’s what I’m going to be demonstrating during a number of LinkedIn lives.

The process being:

Here's an example of before and after images I pulled together to try to demonstrate the likely difference between the two.

You’ll find out more about the Landscaping Your Life process in my book Can’t see the wood for the trees – landscaping your life to get back on track and also on my Landscaping Your Life with Alison Smith podcast (Spotify/Apple).

Landscaping Your Life coaching sessions often take place outside in nature (even if I’m at the other end of the phone if we can’t be together) and usually last 1-2 hours and are often all that’s needed to get you back on track. More intensive sessions for a day or more can be arranged if you’re wanting a total life rewilding session and sessions to capitalise on the transformative energy of Easter are still available.

I’m also looking for volunteers to be guests on my new podcast The words we live by as we explore the benefits and the unintended consequences of sayings we live by – such as, you’ve got to be in it to win it, no pain no gain, fake it till you make it, you can’t have your cake and eat it and so on. Again I’ve seen some great shifts in thinking having trailed this with a few people over recent months and can’t wait to share it more broadly via the podcast.

I'd love to hear from you alison@alisonsmith.co +44(0)7770 538159

Knowing the difference between using the iceberg as an analogy or a metaphor could make such a huge difference to the amount of insight you get about the situation you’re grappling with.

That is, it could make the difference between finding a solution and not finding it – or put another way the difference between staying overwhelmed or stressed and not!!

As an analogy the iceberg reminds us that we only see what’s above the surface and yet there’s much more beneath the surface (c90%).

And that’s it – the analogy is a snapshot in time - life is like the iceberg ie we don’t see everything.

As a metaphor – which is more like a movie - the iceberg has many additional patterns:

Not every pattern will resonate or apply to the situation you’re grappling with but one or two might.

Let’s focus on the %s that so often are simply used as

Alternatively, it could be about

Do any of these patterns help you make sense of your current quandary? Or perhaps other patterns have come to mind as you’ve thought about the wider iceberg metaphor.

Next time you use a nature analogy to describe a situation why not go a little deeper into the metaphor - it may just be the difference that makes the difference.


It’s certainly why for 24 years I’ve used nature’s landscapes as metaphors for our lives to help give you wider perspectives about situations you’re grappling with.

See #landscapingyourlife on social media channels for more, or see the Landscaping Your Life podcast (Apple/Spotify or index of episodes here) or buy my book Can’t see the wood for the trees - landscaping your life to get back on track.

Or if you’re stressed, lost or don’t know what to do and instead want to ‘know the problem is solvable’ (as someone described the outcome of a coaching session last week) do get in touch alison@alisonsmith.co +44(0)7770 538159


What does love want you to know?

Seven years ago I developed a coaching toolkit which was a series of postcards from individual soft skills sent to you whilst on their holidays.

It read like a series of love letters from aspects of yourself each asking to be understood better including, for example, postcards from motivation, judgement, confidence, communication, change, decision making, creativity and so on.

For Valentine’s Day this year I had thought I’d just be sharing that toolkit with you – offering it as a means of deepening your relationship with yourself.

And I am, and yet another postcard made itself known at six in the morning over the weekend and asked to be written.

A postcard from love.

Perhaps before reading my own postcard you could sit for a while and consider what emerges for you.

To write words that follow

Dearest one, And fill the space before writing the words, with love from love x

You’ll find a link to the whole soft skills toolkit by signing up to my newsletter and then looking in the archive of posts for 14th Feb 2024. Although you will find a little more about the toolkit in this blog too. Any always happy to talk to you about using it as the theme for a soft skills development programme for your team. I'm currently delivering a 3 month programme and to say I'm like a kid in a sweetshop is an understatement.

Happy Valentine’s Day

With much love

Alison xx

alison@alisonsmith.co +44(0)7770 538159

And here is that postcard from love and below that a Linkedin live I recorded on the subject

And here's a link to a LinkedIn live on the subject

If life feels like groundhog day then I have the perfect antidote to that circling and - as you'd expect with me - it involves sending the story you're telling yourself about the situation on a coffee break.

Whilst on that coffee break it allows your inner wisdom, that part of you that does know what to do, time to look at the situation from a different perspective - because stress, overwhelm and frustration are not the best companions to solving problems.

You'll find written instructions about how to stop the circling here.

With podcast episodes that might also add insight that include:

Do let me know how you get on - alison@alisonsmith.co

If you're interested and intrigued about what Landscaping Your Life is all about and how it can help you if you're struggling, stressed, overwhelmed or don't know what to do the Landscaping Your Life podcast episodes will help bring it more alive (Apple/Spotify and you'll find an index here) - so too my chats on other people's podcasts - where the breadth and depth of questions really excites, inspires and challenges me.

With my interviews on other people's podcasts coming more frequently I'm going to share them here on a monthly basis - with all those undertaken prior to September 2023 being found here, October 2023 here, November 23 here, December 23 here and March to May 24 here. Do keep an eye out on the LYL blog for future month's interviews.

I loved these conversations - do pick one and have a listen and let me know what you think alison@alisonsmith.co +44(0)7770 538159

Do also get in touch if you'd like me to be a guest on your podcast talking about all things Landscaping Your Life and how language and metaphor can really help your listeners to get back on track when they're struggling alison@alisonsmith.co

Today's Likedin live had me laughing very loudly whilst in the woods when I was face to face with a tree trunk and realised how little I could see about the options of how to get out of the wood - ie I had to step back to see all the options.

In life as well as when in the wood.

How easy was that - less than 5 minutes and yet it’s something I’ve put off, dreaded and spent far too much time worrying about and working around this week.

I’ve just this minute deleted the display’s driver on my laptop and it wasn’t the end of the world and mountain I imagined it to be - and it resolved the problem too.

Isn’t that the challenge with many problems - because we don’t know what to do we start making mountains without realising it.

What’s really a molehill becomes a huge mountain and before we know it we’re delaying action because we believe we need to prepare for the trek up the mountain.

It’s as if all week I’ve been getting the tent out, putting everything I might need for the trek into my rucksack, imagined the route I’d take, worried about my knees ability to get me to the top and on and on.

The more I thought about it the bigger the mountain got and the more overwhelmed I became.

And yet, just like these images of the sand on the beach, it really was a small blip - easily resolved - and not worth the angst.

Where might you be making mountains out of molehills - and how can you get some perspective to release the overwhelm and enable you to take action to resolving it?

If you need some help the Landscaping Your Life podcast may be a great place to start - just pick an episode title that resonates with how you're feeling and notice what you notice (Apple/Spotify and you'll find an index here).

My book Can't see the wood for the trees is also a fabulous reference manual for when you're stuck and don't know what to do - one reader described it as "first aid kit for the mind".

I love love love watching Landscape artist of the year - a new season of which started last night here in the UK on Sky.

I’ve watched it since its first episode in 2015 and have said for every one of the episodes since that I’d love to learn to paint.

I’ve therefore set myself a goal of doing just that this year 🎨 🖌️🧑‍🎨

The challenge of course is taking the first step and then committing to the time to do it regularly.

So if you’re in the same boat and would welcome an accountability buddy to keep us focused on our goal do get in touch.

The image shown above is of a painting I commissioned a friend, Pamela Lee art, to paint for me during Covid depicting many of the idioms covered in my book Can’t see the wood for the trees - landscaping your life to get back on track.

The books premise is that when we use idioms such as “can’t see the wood for the trees” that we also have an internal representation (some might describe it as a painting) of that wood and those trees for the situation we’re describing as such.

By bringing that representation / painting into conscious awareness we can therefore explore and even amend it in order to discover solutions and different perspectives about the situation.

This action helps shift us from a sense of stuckness and lack of options to picking from a lovely list of (metaphorical) solutions, that might include:

Or one solution that applies more often than not

Walking in a real wood, rather than drawing or imagining it, provides yet more solutions and insight.

For more about how to use your own internal representations to help you solve problems see my Landscaping Your Life podcast, or the Can’t see the wood for the trees book.

Or if you’d like to be guided on a Landscaping Your Life walk do get in touch - me at the other end of the phone as you walk is as effective as me being by your side so your location in the world is not an issue.

See #landscapingyourlife on social media channels for more, or see the Landscaping Your Life podcast (Apple/Spotify or this index of episodes) or buy my book Can’t see the wood for the trees - landscaping your life to get back on track.

Or if you’re stressed, lost or don’t know what to do and instead want to ‘know the problem is solvable’ (as someone described the outcome of a coaching session last week) do get in touch alison@alisonsmith.co +44(0)7770 538159

If you’re currently organising a team vision setting or development day some metaphorical Landscaping Your Life input can also be truly transformative - DM for more.

© Alison Smith
VAT Registration: 224 5001 58
Registered in Scotland, Registration Number: SC457105
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