Happy Christmas

Happy Christmas

happy christmas from manage those things

Thank you to all the people and businesses we’ve worked with this year. It’s been wonderful sharing some of them through our advent calendar.

2018 is already looking very exciting with the people who have booked in the diary, booked onto an Action Learning Set, taken advantage of the Confident Business Owner package, or just said they want some help with an aspect of their business.

Thanks to all those who were part of our 2017 Advent Calendar. Please feel free to use this list of unique businesses throughout the year who can help you, support, create things for you.

We wish you, your family, friends and business colleagues a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

Tracey-Jane & the Manage Those Things team x



Network for a Better World

As Father Christmas is on his way around the world delivering presents to the children of the world, I wanted to share one last group with you this Advent season.

A good friend of mine is working for this charity in Malawi for a year, having spent a month in the village of Sitima earlier in the year.

We may be spending time grumbling about what we haven’t done, or bought, or prepared today. And our children may be disappointed with their presents tomorrow. However, Marian’s work, and that of other people like her around our world, highlight some issues that should make us even more grateful for this season of excess.

community love in sitima malawi with network for a better worldNetwork for a Better World (or N4BW for short)  is a UK charity which  brings people together, doing simple things, so that step by step, we can tackle poverty.  They are,

bringing people together, doing simple things, so that step by step we can tackle poverty 

N4BW aspires to be an instrument of progress and peace in a divided world.
Our aim is: N4BW shares the stated main aim of the Malawian Government and the Malawi Conference of Catholic Bishops : to eradicate extreme hunger in Malawi(Millennium Development Goal 1, target 1C)
Our objective is: Reaching the most marginalised, poorest families and providing sustainable, long term, routes out of that de-humanising & avoidable poverty. N4BW will do this through:  community health education, distribution of life enhancing items, improvement of primary school standards, action on primary school attendance, after-school clubs and provision of secondary school teacher to improve standards, micro-business schemes, micro environmental/agro schemes – and other projects which the trustees agree meet the objective.
Marian’s work is focusing on education. Here’s her most recent update to me:

Life here is good, i am really very happy and kept busy.  I have been keeping fit by cycling but this week have bought a car though it is my intention to use the bike as much as possible

Often towards the end of the afternoon I sit in the centre of the village, under the shade of the mango tree and talk to people.Some want to practice their English and others just chatter away in Chichewa, it is such a friendly place. Children are happy and shout out whenever they see me. Yesterday i played with a little bouncy ball with a group of 3-7 year olds. I lasted for about an hour but they went on and on and on. Last week i gave a little car to Victor the 21 month old son of Martha my Chichewa teacher. He knew it was a car but didnt know how to play with it. He soon learned!

Work in schools is very interesting. The ministry aims for a teacher/ pupil ratio of 1:60 but in many schools it Is one to more than 100. Children are taught in dark overcrowded classrooms, no electricity. Until they are aged about 11 they sit on the floor, which is often full of potholes,  but they are cheerful and attentive. I went into  a Standard 1 class last week and there were 165 little tinies sitting there with just one teacher!

My focus during the next half term is to improve the English speaking ability of the teachers as they all teach English and some of them are not very good at all. Can you imagine at the end of it we’ll have all those Malawians speaking with a Scouse accent.

For those of us who are wondering which diary or journal to buy, and what to write in the ‘gratitude box’ on the printed page, I find Marian’s updates humbling. We’re always told, that if we’re feeling sorry for ourselves, or something hasn’t gone quite right, then there’s always someone worse off than us.

I know cultures are very different across the world. But should we allow people anywhere to live in poverty with no food? Whatever we do today, and over this festive season, please spare a thought, and maybe add it to your wish list for 2018, to make some change which will affect others in our world.

For more information about the work Marian Kearney is doing, please contact her via her blog. There is electricity and internet in the village, but it’s intermittent & she updates her blog when she can. She’s happy to talk to people about her work, and share ideas about how we can help the people of Sitima and Malawi in some small way.

We truly can make a difference in our world if we work together, as a network for a better world.

To contact N4BW:

Email N4BW

Facebook: Network for a Better World

Twitter: @N4BW1

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Mindset Metaphors

I’ve followed Lottie Moore for a while, and been fascinated by her work at Mindset Metaphors. She’s in an online group I belong to, so it’s been easy to sneakily learn a bit more about her and her work.

When she invited me to join a 28 day affirmation challenge during December, I thought, “why not”. It’s a way I can learn more about affirmations and the work she does, and obviously see how affirmations can help me in my life and work too. So I have been learning each day with Lottie, and it’s interesting. The way that the words we use may not be quite what we mean when we really think about it. It’s been great to use time to really think about what I want for 2018 for myself, my family and the businesses I want to work with.

lottie moore of mindset metaphorsMindset Metaphors believe that everyone has the right to live to their full potential in all areas of their life, and we support them to make that happen in three key ways:

  1. Training coaches and trainers to facilitate life changing Mindset Metaphors with their clients, including glass and fire walks
  2. Hosting events and retreats for individuals who are seeking deeper connections and conscious living.
  3. Working with organisations to develop their teams, allowing each member to experience empowerment, whilst exploring their vital role within the team. Creating a mindset for success.

Their founder, Lottie Moore, is a Sakahani Master Firewalk Instructor, and multi-award winning trainer, speaker, and mindset coach, who has been empowering inviduals with an array of breakthrough activities for many years. Drawing on her learnings from while she lived in Burkina Faso, Lottie brings a unique perspective to her training and events, igniting the passion and productivity within everyone she works with.

Lottie has marked herself out as the expert in her field, and is the ‘go to’ person for creating change, growth, and ultimately success, for all she works with. She is best known for taking people out of their comfort zone to create the results they seek from leading women to the rooftop of North Africa for International Women’s Day, to working with teams to create exceptional and dynamic results.

Lottie is passionate about enabling as many individuals and teams as possible to experience the life-changing transformation that Mindset Metaphors and Firewalking can bring.

Lottie has just run an event with 108 firewalks! Wow! Most of us haven’t ever walked on one fire have we?

If you want to learn more about Lottie & how Mindset Metaphors can help you, or your team, change a mindset, please get in touch directly:

Phone: 0333 772 9692

Email: team@MindsetMetaphors.com

Facebook: MindsetMetaphors

Twitter: MindsetMetaphor


Selling Made Easier

Isn’t it wonderful when you meet someone and you just hit it off? Well this is exactly what’s happened this month with Hayley Caine, who does amazing things with businesses through her business Selling Made Easier.

hayley caine selling made easierYou are a very smart cookie.  You know what you are doing, you are an expert in your business.  You are madly passionately in love with what you do, and if you could only tell the whole world about it, you know with absolute certainty that you would make a fortune. 

Do you know why most businesses fail?  The business is not duplicatable, the owner puts everything into it and does everything in it, and sales are insufficient.

Particularly if you have come from corporate world where you might have had someone to kick you up the bum to reach your targets … or else! No bonus, no pay rise, and it is extremely likely that you wouldn’t have got that promotion either.

So what is it being an entrepreneur?  You want it but there is no drive.  It’s what you have always dreamed of.  The time freedom and to work whenever you want to.  And it would be even better if you just had consistent cash coming in but currently it’s probably up and down like a roller coaster.

That’s why accountability helps.  But wait.  I know you have heard about accountability before but what about specific sales accountability?  Actually being held accountable to somebody who will literally kick you from here to Timbucktoo if you don’t do what you said you would do.

It’s totally different.  It just keeps you on track.  It actually improves your sales.  It leaves you feeling better about your business, about your life, about your sales, giving you increased income because you are actually getting down to it.

It works because you sit with a group of other like minded people around my kitchen table and bounce ideas off each other.  Inspiration not desperation is definitely the theme.  And you lift each other high.

Hayley is inspirational and motivational, and I met her after some of her clients told me, I “had to meet Hayley”. Well, they were right.

Who knows what 2018 will bring? We just know that having met each other, the people and businesses we work with will grow quicker with us knowing each other, and possibly working collaboratively with some clients, then if we’d not met. How exciting! 🙂

Contact Hayley and Selling Made Easier directly and she’ll help you sell more easily:

Phone: 01257 544401

Email: hayley@sellingmadeeasier.co.uk

Linked In: Hayley Caine



ADVENT – DAY 21: WP Fiddly Bits

WP Fiddly Bits

Day 21, and we’re getting closer to the end of our business showcase for Advent 2017. It’s amazing to look back and see who we’ve worked with in some way this year. And some of our clients, and businesses we collaborate with didn’t want to be involved, so I’m overwhelmed with the number and variety of businesses we work with.

Today it’s the turn of another good friend Alison Rothwell social media consultant. I first met Alison years ago with my first business, bras4mums when she had her second baby. Alison’s businesses have changed over the years, and it’s been wonderful to be a part of her business growth over that time. We’ve supported each other in various ways, with our individual expertise.

Alison’s current business WPFiddlyBits focuses on just that – getting those fiddly bits on a wordpress website sorted out. So it totally fits with Manage Those Things & us helping you get ‘things’ sorted out.

alison rothwellHere at WP Fiddly Bits we work with people like you to keep your website safely up and running, fix those niggly issues that occur and enable you to keep your site and your online marketing up to date.

It’s a wordpress maintenance service with a twist.

Each plan comes with free hosting, website theme and plugin updates done for you and daily website and wordpress database backups.

You can then choose to add either one or two hours of support each month – and you can use this time to take care of even more of those fiddly bits you don’t have the time, knowledge or inclination to DIY.

Boosting your brand: We keep your WordPress theme and plugins updated, so your customers don’t think you are out of date!

Keeping Your Website Safe: Your website and WordPress database backed up daily.

Free Web Hosting: Hassle free and safe website hosting.

Keeping Your Marketing Current: We can help your site stay relevant by adding the bells and whistles your competitiors have, quickly and professionally.

Alison and her team have just rebuilt our website. We are nothing short of thrilled – they have been very easy to work with, very quick and clearly know exactly what they are doing. We have signed up to a Fiddly Bits package for ongoing support.


We also help you do your own SEO, through our Free SEO Tips and Free SEO Training.

It’s been wonderful having Alison as part of our expert online marketing team for our “Get your website working” course. Her free tips are a perfect starting point before diving deeper into the course. Alison has agreed to continue to be part of the support team for those going through the course, which is fantastic for those wanting to learn more about how to do their own SEO, or manage their own website.

Alison and the WP Fiddly Bits team are experts in their field and we work collaboratively with them with a number of our clients. We always want the best for those businesses we work with, so if that means recommending another business, that’s exactly what we’ll do!

To learn more about how Alison Rothwell and her WP Fiddly Bits team can help your business grow online, contact them directly:

Phone: +44 20 8798 0709

Email: help@wpfiddlybits.com

Twitter: @AlisonRothwell

Facebook: @AlisonJRothwell


ADVENT – DAY 20: Sarah Jane Lee

Sarah Jane Lee

It’s been amazing who I’ve met these past few months, and they all seem interconnected in some way to help others. Sarah Jane Lee is no exception.

Sarah is an experienced actor, storyteller, drama workshop creator, school teacher, singer, voice over artist, and many other ‘things’ besides. Sarah Jane ran the RSC storytelling workshops for 9 years, after she completed an MA in Drama Education. A woman of many talents!

She’s so many talents, and she loves them all, giving joy to others in everything she does. I can’t wait to see what she gets up to in 2018, but it will certainly touch hundreds of people 🙂

sarah jane lee

What’s your story? We all have one of course. I am fascinated by stories. I love the fact that, no matter what, we can find a connection through story. We might connect to someone else’s true story, to a work of fiction, to just a word or a phrase. Or it’s just the sharing and telling that makes it. When we make stories together, we can contribute our experiences, thoughts, imaginings, memories, even songs into one big, fabulous story.

It may just be one word or someone starts a song and knows every word, a laugh, a shout. Whatever, we make, we make something true and beautiful that resonates in all of our hearts – because we made it. It brings us together. We read it back. We laugh, maybe have a song, and we definitely have fun!

I use drama to teach humanities, RE and literacy. Many children, (especially those struggling with traditional methods), connect through the drama process. I work in a very structured way, scaffolding the work carefully unravelling the subject matter through stories. I never say, “Make up a play”. I ask, “How do you think the girl in the factory feels at this moment? Let’s ask her”.

It’s intricate work – not drama games – and it is very liberating.

Sarah is an experienced Drama Practitioner & Actor with a PGCE in Drama and an MA in Drama & Theatre Education. She trained with Professor Jonothan Neelands and Dr Joe Winston at The University of Warwick in 2007.

Her work includes interactive storytelling for families using Shakespeare, teaching drama in schools, supporting Shakespeare festivals and directing and developing film projects with homeless and vulnerable adults in Manchester.

Sarah’s has an impressive list of clients including: The Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester, The Lowry Theatre, Manchester, The Royal Shakespeare Company, The National Theatre Company, North West Drama, Manchester, Acting On Impulse Registered Charity, West Midlands Library Service, The Cheltenham Literature Festival, and many North West schools.

To learn more about theatre, drama and storytelling workshops for schools, contact Sarah Jane Lee directly:

Phone: 07762 103620

Email: me@sarahjanelee.co.uk

Twitter: @sarahjanelee1

LinkedIn: Sarah Jane Lee




Whilst the Utility Warehouse isn’t a small company, as it’s listed on the London Stock Exchange, not many people have heard of it. It’s also a company which is promoted by a network of self employed distributors who are all passionate about helping people save money and earn money.

We’ve been using Utility Warehouse for 7 years now, and each year we check that we’re still getting value for money on our utilities, (gas, electric, telephone, broadband and mobile). We save money as a family in so many ways, through the services we’re offered on one bill, and through the cash back card linked to our bill. This time of year is great, as our utility bill goes down when we’re buying Christmas presents with cash back partners!

utility warehouse authorised distributor

Utility Warehouse is operated by Telecom Plus PLC, a major British company whose shares are listed on the London Stock Exchange. The company provides its members with great value, great savings and the best possible customer service. Perhaps it’s not surprising that, in a survey, 93% of Utility Warehouse customers said they would recommend them to a friend.

Utility Warehouse provides over 600,000 customers throughout the UK with substantial savings on a wide range of utility services including home phone, mobiles, broadband, gas and electricity.

Utility Warehouse is operated by Telecom Plus PLC, a major British company, listed on the London Stock Exchange. Telecom Plus was named ‘Company of the Year’ at the PLC Awards in 2009 and was also named Best Telecommunications PLC at the UK Stock Market Awards in 2011, 2012 and 2014. The company has received glowing endorsements in the national press and consistent praise from the UK’s leading independent consumer magazine.

You may not have heard of Utility Warehouse before, as they don’t advertise. Instead, they rely on satisfied customers and Independent Distributors letting their friends and family know about the great value services they deliver.

They share the money they save with their members, which means you benefit from the best value in the UK!

You may not have heard of Utility Warehouse before – that’s the secret to saving lots of money! The company does not advertise in the national press or on TV. Instead, it relies on personal recommendation; satisfied customers and Independent Distributors letting their friends, family and colleagues know about the savings they have made. The company passes the savings it makes on to its members – by charging less.

Utility Warehouse is very different to other suppliers because they’re a club – a Discount Club. They don’t have any high street shops and because (unlike their competitors) they don’t spend customers’ money on expensive advertising campaigns on TV or in the national press, they can afford to charge their customers less for the same services.

As a member of Utility Warehouse, you SAVE…

  • Single supplier for all your utilities
  • Award-winning customer service
  • Value that’s unbeatable
  • Easy to switch

Utility Warehouse offers services to residential customers as well as business customers, and I’ve experienced both sides of the company. I love the fact that the call centre is in London, and the staff are so helpful, and really care about you and giving you the best customer service possible. The company has won many awards and is recommended for it’s customer service and services by Which.
To see how much money you can save on your utility bills, (all services or just one or two), use the online quote system, or contact Tracey-Jane, an Authorised Utility Warehouse Distributor who will be happy to help you save money:
Email: T-J Hughes
Phone: 07762000426
If you’re interested in earning a second income, please watch this video and register your interest and we’ll get in contact with you in next few days.



Wisdom Oracle

I first met Deborah at a women’s personal development group run by the lovely Sarah Walton in Lancashire. It took me a long time to really understand how Deborah helped people, and it’s been wonderful getting to know her over these last two years.

This year I’ve worked with Deborah more closely and have been amazed at how by opening myself up to listening to myself more, and using my intuition, I’ve had a more relaxed and positive year. No more ‘forcing’ things. Simply listening and following my instincts for my personal life as well as my business growth.

Yes, I know, it sounds a bit “woo woo”, but Deborah has simply given me the confidence to work out what’s best for me, and do it, however bizarre it sometimes seems at the time. My motto is, “If it works, go with it”, so I have.


Wisdom oracleI’m Deborah and I am the Wisdom Oracle working with my intuition to really see what is going on in your life.

You may be feeling stuck, confused, frustrated, at a crossroads in your personal or business life and not knowing which way to turn or which direction to take.

You may be having sleepless nights or undue worry or anxiety over a decision you know you need to make and just do not know what is the right decision and are scared of making the wrong decision.

You may be feeling powerless or overwhelmed by perceived external circumstances or other people dictating your life, even though you have a nagging feeling that you should or would love to be doing something else.

You may be seeking spiritual direction around your calling or purpose.

Or, alternatively you may just be thinking “there must be more to life than this” and do not know in which direction to turn. I remember that feeling well and it took me 15 years and thousands of pounds to just start to get some answers. Working with intuition gets to the crux of the issue a whole lot quicker.

Don’t worry, I can help.

As the Wisdom Oracle, I help you gain Clarity on any issue that you are struggling with in your life.

I can help you overcome feelings of overwhelm, procrastination, confusion, worry, anxiety or even a health issue that you cannot shift or get to the bottom of.


If you’re feeling stuck, or slightly off balance, I can personally recommend Deborah as the Wisdom Oracle to help you get unstuck and back in balance. She works through skype and zoom online meetings, and her smile and laughter is infectious, as well as her caring and understanding nature.

To book a session, or learn more about how an intuitive coach like the Wisdom Oracle can help you, and your business grow, contact Deborah directly:

Phone: 07883371717

Email: deborah@wisdomoracle.com

Facebook: WisdomOracle

Twitter: @wisdom_oracle



Mercury Model

A friend first introduced me to the Mercury Model when we were talking about communicating with our children, and I was struggling at the time. I found the first book online, Learning without Tears, and read it from cover to cover. It all made sense, and I felt that I wasn’t a failing parent anymore, but there was an explanation as to why my eldest son and I struggled to communicate.

I went on to meet Helyn who lives not too far away, and attend her Mercury Model workshop, where I learnt even more about how we’re all unique in how we process information and communicate.

It’s been one of the most amazing things to help me develop as a person, parent and business owner.

mercury model workshopThe Mercury Model™

A new and original cognitive model for the 21st Century, the Mercury Model focuses on mental uniqueness. It easily identifies and accurately describes how our individual minds tick. It can improve learning and kick-start mutually respectful communication with people of all ages, both genders, from any culture, on any topic, in any situation – from classrooms and living rooms to boardrooms and bar rooms.

Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.

Albert Einstein

LEARNING WITHOUT TEARS (2008 Watkins Publishers, London), written for parents about the terrain of children’s minds, is the biggest step forward in communication since the invention of language.

(Also published by Sunnbook in China, September 2017)

FISH CAN’T CLIMB TREES (2016 Watkins Publishers, London) written for minds of all ages, this is bursting with studies and stories written by and about real people who use the Mercury Model in all walks of life.


Contact Details for Helyn Connerr & the Mercury Model:

27A Main Street, Staveley, Kendal, LA8 9LU

Phone: 01539 822225

Emails:  Learning@MercuryModel.com
Websites:  http://www.MercuryModel.com
Twitter: @MercuryModel
Instagram MercuryModel


Bra Lady

Bra Lady is a network of self employed bra fitters, trained and supported by Tracey-Jane Hughes, so this business is close to our hearts, (literally!).

Tracey-Jane set up the bra fitting network to ensure women across the UK are able to have a bra fitting in their own home, from a trained bra fitter who wants them to have the best bra for them.

Tracey-Jane started selling bras after she was sold a nursing bra which fitted one week and not the next, when she was breastfeeding her second son. It was at the time when the breasts get smaller and the bra fitter hadn’t told T-J this was going to happen. After doing some research, T-J realised that many women weren’t being advised correctly during pregnancy and breastfeeding, so she started her own home bra fitting service across Lancashire and the North West.

T-J as an experienced trainer and manager, took the business one step further, and started the network so that more women across the country could get access to a specialist bra fitter.

bra lady home bra fitting serviceThe Bra Lady network have been supporting women in their own homes since 2004. Offering a home bra fitting service, each Bra Lady runs their own business, offering bra styles and ranges of their choice. Most bra fitters in the network offer mastectomy bras, maternity bras, nursing bras, soft cup bras, sports bras, and teen bras, alongside a small range of underwired bras for everyday wear.

Each Bra Lady holds her own stock, but as a network we work together to find the right bras for you, whatever you’re looking for.

The current team have some specialist areas of interest:

Cambridge Bra Lady – maternity and nursing bras, mastectomy bras, & sports bras
Fenland Bra Lady – plus size bras, underwired bras, mastectomy bras & teen bras
Bournemouth Bra Lady – maternity and nursing bras

Contact them directly for advice & appointments. For general bra fitting advice, ask our bra fitters who offers a mail order service if necessary.

If you’d like to set up your own home bra fitting service, contact Tracey-Jane Hughes and let’s get you going.

The bra fitters love what they do, supporting women, and each has had their own bra epiphany through their own training and trying on hundreds of bras. They love helping other women learn more about bra fitting and finding the right bra for them, whatever their circumstance, size and shape.

It’s a fabulous specialist service which we love supporting.

Contact each Bra Lady individually, or through the main network contacts:

Main contact

Facebook: BraLadyUK

Twitter: @BraLadyUK