In this episode of the Happiness Hive Podcast, Catherine chats with Kate Halfpenny from Bad Mother Media. After decades of writing about other people while raising three of her own, she stepped out from her award-winning career in journalism to create a one-stop shop for personal and professional brands that need memorable writing. Inspired by words, nostalgia, vodka cocktails and Dave Grohl, listen as Australia’s most experienced and trusted content creator shares with us her personal journey of how she does life!
In this episode you’ll also hear:
– how beautiful friendships and connections can be made at any age
– what it feels like to become an empty nester and how to navigate that period of life
– the intentional decisions both women have made to raise resilient, independent children
– the awful job experience that was Kate’s catalyst for a complete change of direction
– what piece of coaching advice got Kate through the most tumultuous time of her life and so much more!
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This podcast is produced by Nikki O’Brien from Quintessential Being
Hi, welcome to the happiness hive Podcast. I'm Catherine Bowyer, and I am completely fascinated by people and what motivates them. I've spent the past three and a half decades specialising in mindset and human behaviour. And I've helped 1000s of people to create happy and amazing lives. And now I am super excited to be chatting with women from around the world who I have secret. And to be honest, not so secret crushes on their women who inspire me. I'm intrigued as to how they do life and what makes them tick. I want to find out the magic formula that makes them who they are. And at the end of the episode, I'd love for you to say, I'd like a little bit of what she's having. The conversations are real and raw. They're full of passion, inspiration and lots of fun, and nothing is off limits. So grab yourself a cuppa or pop on your tracking and go for a walk and join us for today's chat. There may just be that pearl of wisdom you need to hear. So let's shimmy on over and get started. I am so looking forward to today's chat with my gorgeous friend Kate half Penny. Kate is just the gift from last year that I wasn't expecting. She's just such a beautiful person and I'm so excited to have her in my life. And I hope you don't mind me saying this cake but your little bit like this peanut butter cups for me. And the reason being like my life was great before I had my first peanut butter cup, but when I had my first one, it just became so much richer and sweeter. And just so delicious. So you're my Reese's Peanut Butter of my life. We've only known each other for less than a year we met through a mutual friend Tori I don't know if you remember but at that luncheon, and you and I, I just there was probably 20 or 30 women on the it was a virtual lunch and there was probably 20 or 30 women and you just stood out for me and I remember you messaged me through that catch up and we were like, almost like little bits of naughty school girls messaging in the background and it's just been so beautiful and I could go on forever and ever but I want our guests to meet you so welcome welcome Kay.
Catherine Is this how you usually welcome your guests by making them feel a bit teary? Because it's a good tactic, isn't it to take someone off guard and you've achieved it you your interviewer you thank you so much. I am so thrilled to be your racist peanut butter cup that makes you my Cadbury peppermint dairy milk. Yeah, yes. Yes. That's the equivalent. That yeah, no, you're you absolutely beautiful. I'm so thrilled to be doing this chat with you today. And of course, that little story about how we met like, I think I reached out to you first of all I because I was looking at all the faces like the Brady Bunch, you know, set up on the screen. And I thought Who is that woman with that incredible hair and that enormous, fantastic smile? And you just look like the coolest kid going round? Which I think is what I said to you on the chat. You do you do? Why you and yeah, it's been so lovely getting to know you over the last I want to say like 10 months.
I certainly know that it's not been a year when we caught up so we had that lunch and then we had a coffee catch up. You're in Victoria. I'm in Canberra. So we did an online coffee catch up. And for me that just felt like catching up with an old girlfriend that I didn't fit in that and it was just beautiful. That was cool.
And then of course it led to a meeting at an airport hotel in Canberra when I flew in flew out to have my Botox. Yes, it was like a sort of secret squirrel hot date where we literally met at the bar at an airport hotel to say hi and I was really nervous thinking am I going to like you as much in real life as I do? Virtually and on the phone and I didn't so of course I went home feeling and looking well I looked a bit messed up with my Frankenstein process from the first Botox but I felt really great and
gorgeous. Yeah, look gorgeous. That was good. And it was and we've met since then again in person and I do want to just do a shout out. Henry my son Henry moved to Melbourne at the beginning of this year and you and say to your daughter was so beautiful that Sadie was the light helped Henry to settle into Melbourne and you helped me to settle into my baby moving away from home and that was just such a just so reassuring because we're empty nesters. John and I are empty nesters. Now, are you an empty nester
I am and so I think that that was part of why I wanted to, you know, support you at that time because for me empty nesting was so much harder I thought it was going to be you know, we hear a lot about how it's an incredible experience, you get your life back and you get your time back. And it's just you and your partner, or it's just you and your books, whatever it looks like. But for me, in reality, it was really devastating. Catherine, I felt like a rat was reading my heart and that I was going to have to go to a hospital I felt so devastated and not much is said around that, you know, there's not much information for parents at that time in life and you feel a bit churlish saying, I don't really want this. I wanted to turn the clock back 10 years, you know, you feel as if you're ungrateful for it? Yes. That's kind of hard to say.
Very, because I've got two kids, and Ellie is my eldest and she'd be moved, she'd moved out at home and was with her partner Nikki. They moved out of home. They were moving away, I think a week after Henry was moving to Melbourne. And Henry had been living at home. Before he moved to Melbourne. He sort of been in and out of home. But exactly when you said it feels like a rat eating your heart. It was just this. I want my kids to be with me forever, even though I don't. But it was just this whole. I was sad. I was just really, really gut wrenchingly sad and still God, I try and get through without crying but but anyway, we're coming to Melbourne. We're coming to Melbourne to visit Henry and hills up visiting now. So it's beautiful. It's a different dynamic. Yeah.
But it's such a it is one of those changes that catches you by surprise. You know, there's others during our life that have big red signposts that go with them. So we expect perimenopause. You know, we expect death. We expect disaster. But yeah, that emptiness thing, it's sold to us as being something incredible. And you know what it? Is? It really, there is definitely a melancholy feeling that goes with it, whether it is Wow, where did all that time go? You know, with my I have three who are all in their 20s. But their dad and I always said to them, well, we moved out of home at 18 It was the best fun we ever had you to do it too. And of course, they all did, which was racking part about it, they all sort of packed up and left and we have had them coming back in, you know, as they do they come back poor from overseas, or they've had a heartbreak, or they're between rentals or whatever it is that they do pop back in. But yeah, that I mean, on the whole, the acceptance is now that that part of your life is finished. And I think for me the big change there. And I I'd love to hear what it was like for you was really, and I don't mean this to sound, you know, poor me, it was really like what is my role now? Because even though I had had good jobs while the kids were growing up, you know, like, I was always a professional working mum. I think that work was my hobby. With no disrespect to my beautiful employers that I've had, but it felt like the real job was raising the children and raising the family. And once that was gone, it was like, who am I? What do I do? And that sort of coincided for me with a odd professional period as well. So it was that double turmoil? So did you did you feel that you felt upset?
Absolutely. Yeah, I with my kids, I was very, very conscious about raising independent kids. Like I've been very conscious and ill. I think she was 14, maybe 15. She wanted to go on and a student exchange to Italy. And unless you might have been about 12 and I'm going I think you're a little bit too young for that. But she went when she was 15. And she lived overseas. And I remember girlfriends of mine said how can you let her go? I'm going, how could I not? This is just such a beautiful experience. So I've been very conscious about raising independent kids. But far out Kate like when they're independent. Like all I wish I didn't. I really ended that establishing what is my role in parenting you now like they're adults, their peers, I'm still their mom, but it's a different relationship. And I think I'm still navigating that, in all honesty. I really think I'm still navigating that.
So how does that look for you then? I mean, I'm not one of those women who think that I am my children's best friend always shied away from that. Although certainly when they were younger, you know, like I that was not my parenting style at all. You know, I I had really clear boundaries. We actually never had rules in my house growing up there was just sort of expected codes of behaviour. Yes, they were to follow so I wasn't a dictatorial parent, but I really had firm boundaries and they knew how to behave. Yes, so now you know like I I don't I see them as it's more than friends. It's better than friends but it's not friends. I'm still there. I hope to guide them. Yes. Although so that you know
Okay, we'll do that we'll get on today.
Yeah, you know what, I hope that that's what they're looking for. They're looking at the missteps and seeing them as learning experiences and also something that you can recover from, you know, it's about resilience, I suppose. Yeah. Yeah. Trying not to fuck
up next time. Yeah, absolutely. And for me, when you said, what does that look like? Unconscious about? boundaries, and I don't get involved. I'm certainly there as a sounding board. I don't tell them what to do. I've never told them what to do. And I'm just conscious about, you know, sharing pearls of wisdom, but letting them live their own lives. Yeah. I don't interfere. I don't interfere or meddle. Or I don't know, I don't think I do.
I say I have to really hold back on my meddling because I'm one of those. And the natural Mangal who wants to say, but it is true that this is this, it really would be better if you just listened to me. Yeah. Well, you know what Jack feely? Well, he's 29. So 29 years of parenting, has taught me that that does not work. And you know, it's not just with kids, it's with everybody. You know, a couple of years ago, I learned that you should never ever give life advice. Like, that's not what you're here to do. It's more about just that whole giving support and whatever. I've had to rein in my natural tendencies. I mean, the kids, one in particular, my middle son, Felix brings me a lot. He was the kid who growing up, you know, would often say to me, you know, nothing, you don't know anything, you don't understand anything. And now he's my beautiful joy of my heart. Who rings me a lot. What should I buy stick vacuum cleaner, you know? Yeah, where's the best place to buy blah, blah, blah? What should I do about this year? And so I really love it if they seek out advice, and they actively flag it. Can I get some other advice? Yes, you can. Yeah. Otherwise, now? I am here to mix the cocktails. And yeah, maybe? And yeah, change the linen and welcome you.
Yeah. You're You're a good mom. Let me before I want to talk to you about some of the other changes that you've made in life. But what's your parenting mistake? What's the funniest thing about being a parent for you? Because I've got one memory in my mind.
And then that was a job that was okay. There's just
this scene that when the kids were at school, I used to drop them off to school. And Henry was in year one, and they had to learn the violin. And he had his violin in the car, and he was taking forever. And Earl was out of the car going Hurry up, Henry, hurry up. And I was just in a rush. I'm always in a rush. I was trying to close the car door, and it wouldn't close. And I kept going, Why won't this was Elliott's head that she had through the door that she's going carry up Henry, and I was crushing her head in the car.
I'm laughing today. I have to laugh now.
But then the poor little thing, like not just that I was crushing her head in the door. But this boy that she had a crush on was walking. And she was to say, Mom Stop doing that because she didn't want to do it. And I just feel that's just one of those stories. And I do I'm so sorry, Ellie. I've said that to 100 times. But I've got a list. I could I won't go on forever. But I've got a list
of bad parenting with her head damaged.
She had to take the day off school. She had bad headaches. She she did have migraines.
I hope it wasn't am people move away. You were doing that giant. Wait, no,
no, no. It wasn't cut. Was it? Just like wedged in the door?
All right, so mine is Well mine was Jack school ringing me my eldest son. They my kids were always always Katherine falling over and breaking them like that handle. Oh, yeah. They've had broken many broken legs. The Broken arm where the the arm was hanging down, like coming out your shoulder blades, collarbones appendage. That's the stuff you know, like over 22 surgeries between three of them. Wow. Yeah, like traumatic anyway, I used to get sick a bit. So the jack school rang me one day and said he's in sickbay. And he says to tell you he's done something to his knee. And I just said can you tell him back? I've had it up to posses bar with my really weak children falling over. I'm not interested in case you've got to cut us if not, he can get on the train at the end of the day. I'm sure he'll be fine by then. You know, he came home and he was hobbling and Mom It really hurts I just said not sympathy run out. I can tell it's not broken. Because I could buy them I could tell if they had a break because they used to fountains let him look like a dead fish on. You know, but anyway, he didn't look like that it's not broken. It he hobbled around for months complaining about it. Yeah. thing was done finally Felix when we go back to he legitimately had a broken arm that needed four hours of surgery for this massive cord screw break. When I took him back for his checkup with the orthopaedic surgeon Jack came with me. And the surgeon watches Jack hobbles in and says Jack what's wrong with your name? And I had nothing do not indulge him. I do and don't there's nothing wrong with this thing. So feels around. I'll never forget he like looked over his shoulder at me goes, Hey, this nice stuffed anyway, can you help Jack didn't have to have surgery had to have 30% of his cartilage cut out because of all the damage incurred by bad mother not listening to him at all. So that was a really long story. But the message is if a kid says something wrong, yeah, I know I've
got the same just another quick one with Ellie. She was playing netball. And she was at Rip netball level. And she was complaining about her knees. And she wanted to come off when one of the games and I said well, you can't you have to keep playing. And she just stormed off. And I said that's not okay. That's really not good sportsmanship. And she had been complaining about her knee for ages. She had to have knee reconstruction. Like I said, you get back on and you play. And this going on same sort of thing. Is this like Don't be soft knee reconstruction.
So what does that say about us? What does? I mean, also in our children's bad knees?
Yes. Yeah, it's Tell me tell me you've made some big changes in your life recently. So all over the last, you know, few years, what are some of those changes been?
Yeah, so in 2020? I mean, you know, we all had a year, then, we really did. And I'm certainly not claiming that mine was any worse than anyone else. But I made a really bad job choice. You know, for the first time in? What is it? I started working in 85. Fresh from school. So we're talking a long time, I think it was yeah, that is, you know, 37 years of a pretty blameless, blemish free for Korea, made a really bad job choice. And it was, you know, what, I actually can't go into details, I will burst into tears. But suffice to say it was a job where every day a giant bell would ring maybe four or five times a day, and you would have to stop what you were doing and dance on command, like a trained bear. And they said it was to celebrate people, whereas for me it was just to humiliate people. Yeah, that was that that was just a tiny example of the powerlessness of the job and of the organisation, that that created anxiety and humiliation in a ways. But I had to sit it out for a while because it was COVID We were living in Victoria, they were locked down. Because you know, I am at my age, I'm 55 I work in media, you know, there were not a tonne of jobs, waiting to be taken at that time, I'd been divorced. So I had a huge mortgage. And I really needed to keep working until, you know, until I didn't, there just came a morning where I woke up and thought, I'm really going to have a full blown nervous breakdown here. And I don't know if I will be coming back from it. Wow, it was really, really,
really feel that
I can feel the combination of this awful job and the isolation of the lock downs. And you know, again, lots of people were going through bad times, and I claimed that I was special, but in my head, I needed to leave that job. So I did in the middle of a pandemic. remember waking up and saying to my husband, we're going to leave Melbourne I need to get out of here I need to move down by the beach. You know, like this, see has always been my thing. I'm a pretty poor swimmer, but give me a boogie board and a bit of a bit of a two metre swell. And I can I can mix it with anyone. Oh, he was amazing. He did not even say really? Should we talk about it. He pretty much just said great. And we ended up selling our beautiful place in Collingwood, which is in in a Melbourne in 10 days in a pandemic, which Yeah, which was incredible. You know, this was when, you know dire straits, which is fantastic. Bought a place down at the beach outside Geelong a week after that and moved down here. So, you know, city girl pretty much my whole life and suddenly I am living in a little little coastal town although I should say I did grow up in Tassie by the beach. My parents used to own a hotel motel in a fishing village on the east coast of Tassie when I was growing up. But, you know, I had lived in Melbourne again since I was 15. I think that was a part of me that always wanted to go back to, to that quieter life. Not have a job. So for the first time since 1985. I did not have a full time job. I wasn't living in the city. I didn't have kids with me. So there were a lot of changes a lot going
on. Yeah. So The job was not great. So you got to a point where you went, you know what, I'm not going to put up with this anymore? And do you remember that sort of decision making for you? What, what got you through that?
It was really interesting. I talked with a coach about it. And, you know, I'm someone who doesn't meditate, who does it by Yoga, you know, all of that stuff. I don't do rituals, none of that sort of stuff that that traditional idea of wellness isn't my idea. My idea is running and the boogie boarding and reading chocolate, you know, that's, that's what works for me. Yeah, so it's a bit woowoo even saying a coach, but I thought, you know, why not? And he said to me, Look, what you need to do is, is write down, do not drink before you do it. And you can't type it out. It's got to be handrim. Write down what you want your life to look like. Nothing. Nothing is too big. Nothing is too small. You know, I want you just and I said that just sounds so Dicky, you know, like, I'm in grade five with my pink glitter pet. And like, diary, this is what I would like a puppy. It just sounded really idiotic. But I did this. You know, I paid him for his advice. So I thought I'm gonna take her do it. Yeah. So I sat down. And you know, I really remember the first thing I wrote, which was I want to we were living in in Collingwood, we had a three storey beautiful apartment, yeah, which was, you know, build up the back of our 30s warehouse. So it was pretty spectacular. But the first thing that came to my mind was, I want a single storey house for my old dog. And once I had that fixed, everything just sort of flowed from there. I ended up sitting there for an hour, like writing over three closely written pages. Nothing was too big or too small. I wanted to see my parents, you know, not just on weekends, I wanted to see them on weekdays, instead of having to put aside that special time on the weekend to visit them. You know, it was hilarious, have better hair, you know, die by for a year. It was really interesting. What came up. And at the end of that, I went back to the coach and said, Do you want to hear it? He said, Oh, God, no, no, no, no, no, I never need to say that point of it. I don't need to mark your work. The point is, now you've got it, you know what you want. Now go make it happen. And it was like, but I've got a house in the city and my husband works in Melbourne, you know? And he said, Well, do you want this life or not? Like it is on you? I do actually want to take action? Do you want it to be a reality? Or are you just kind of be another one of those people with the bullshit dreams? I would like to do this, I would like to do that. He said, seriously, this is your life. Like if you want it to happen, go make it happen. Here would be amazing. I was just like, oh of love. Yes, it was fantastic. So suddenly, I was doing all of the things that were on my list. And it's funny, you know, I if my life was a museum that would be exhibit A, you know, these three pages that I wrote that that formed the basis of the life that I wanted. And, you know, I just, it was a huge lesson for me, Katherine, where I realised that, you know, a lot of us have in mind what we want. But we don't go get it. You know, it just sits there as a pipe dream where we say, oh, but the kids need to do that. Or I've got responsibilities or blah, blah, blah. And it was just, it was really exciting for me to think I can have it. I can have what I want. And it hasn't been perfect. There's lots of things that, you know, that haven't worked out brilliantly. Like I love it a lot more than my husband does. I think he misses the city. Yeah, but it's not forever. You know, like, it's a really lovely stage. And I've got an apple tree, and I'm two minutes from my favourite beach. And my dog has never been. So, you know, there's a lot of good stuff that's happened.
There's so many powerful bits in there. Probably the most powerful is that you thought the coach was okay. Being a coach. I can recommend you yet. Yeah, but the advice and I'm with you that a lot of people have year, but I can't do it. Because like, Yeah, but I'd love to do. Yeah, but And what I also find is that a lot of people don't even know what they want in life. They don't even take that time to think about what life could be like,
You know what that is? Absolutely. Yeah, absolutely. Right. And, you know, I think maybe you and I've discussed this before, but you know, that realisation is so powerful, because how can you get what you want? If you don't know what you want? Yeah, you know, we somehow think that magically our life is going to unspool is a preordained way, and it's all going to be wonderful. And we'll cope with the bits that aren't, but it's not. I mean, I've learned that in my 50s Yeah, it's not how it works. You know, I didn't want to turn around at 70 and say, Actually, I didn't want to live in the city forever, or I you know, whatever it was. So you are exactly right. It's an if we seem to think Sorry, I'll be fishing. It's money that we need to be saving and protecting, you know, we're all saving our super we're all investing whatever we want. We think that money is the important factor as we get older. For me, it isn't. It's actually, it's the it's time. You know, time is the most precious thing that we have. And once that's gone, we can't get it back, we can make more money, we can't get more time. And so for me, it was wanting to know what I wanted and then chase it.
Yeah. And do you know what when you say about time, for me, it's also about health. Because if we don't have our health, we can have all the money in the world we can have all the time in the world, but we're going to be not doing anything with it. And I've, you know, mum passed away when she was young, my dad's recently passed away, and he didn't have good health for the last maybe 20 years. And I'm very, very conscious. And I know you are as well about, you know, that health and wellness of looking after this vessel that we're in so we can make the most of life. Yeah.
So how does that look for you? What do you do every day, every week to
I do I have a very, and I don't say strict, but I do have a morning ritual, where I exercise I move my body. And I must admit, the last maybe couple of months, they haven't been I haven't been rowing as much and I haven't been walking. So I'm very starting there. But I do a lot of mindset work. And it's about visualising what my life is like, like what my goals are. And you know, when you were saying that you saw your coach, she got you to write stuff down. For those of you that are listening, I've got my this is my vision book that this is I've looked at is probably about 15 or so years old. And it's just got images of what I want my life to be like, and this is the next one about the moving down the coast. So I'm very envious cape of your sea change, but mine mines in the pipe pipeline as well. So okay, so I have visual representation, I do actually think about what I want my life to be like and what I want myself to be like. And it's also about lots of gratitude, lots of stuff in its mindset, its body as well, and health. So I'm very conscious about even you know, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups are good for you. But I'm very conscious about what I put into my my body. And that's not just food and drink, but it's also about messages and stuff like that energy. And it's I don't know, what's it look like for you? What's your health, wellness, preparing for the future look like?
Yeah, well, I I am like you I'm playing the long game. And you actually said to me when we were having a conversation about happiness, because that's something that you and I both have a real interest in and our own formula for and I remember you saying, there will be another chapter, but it might be three chapters or four chapters in the book, you know, like, don't expect that you can get everything that you want immediately. You know, like, that's not how it works. But that's not to say that you can't work towards it. And it's three chapters away. And I loved it when he said that, because, you know, that's that is pretty much what I do. I remember, you know, I've always have I always been pretty healthy. And I probably haven't, you know, I probably haven't when the kids were younger, I used to do a morning, walk five days a week with a girlfriend and thought that that was pretty good. You know, and it was we used to have a really great debrief, but nothing sort of more than that. And then as the kids got older, I remember Jack's 50th Birthday photo, where we were all standing in front of the rabbit hutch for some reason, an odd choice for backdrop, but I remember getting that photo and thinking oh, my hair looks really good. But my arms looked really fat. And it was a funny sort of awakening moment for me where it was like what it was, you know, it was that weird moment and I joined a gym next week and you know have been going ever since so that's the only 15 years I do gym five mornings a week. Oh wow. Yeah, I love Oh, well that's my meditation you know that. For me it's not because I love it. I mean I get obsessed by it. I don't love it and I don't like running but I make myself run. I don't love it but for me now the benefits are that you know what the goal is that I'm around for another 30 years for the health of really good health I don't want it to be mediocre health. I don't want you know, I want it to be I want to be bursting with root health when I'm a grandmother Yes. Yes. So for me it is just about protecting my body plus I love my body I absolutely love it there is nothing about it that I don't worship. I would never ever ever say you know I hate my stomach or I hate this I hate that. Yeah, God knows my stomach isn't you know it's got that little sort of phrases Aryan baby shelf on it. I've got saggy boobs even though I've had them rebuilt. You know, I still got sort of chubby arms. It's not as bad out that like, I don't care, really, the visuals are unimportant. For me, it's, it's the fact that this body has made three children, it's carried me through life for 55 years, it's fed children, you know, it's still going strong, I want to value and treasure it so,
so much. Well, it's just what it is,
for me, you know, it looks like I exercise to keep it fit not to look a certain way. And that yeah, I adore my body. So whatever it wants, and if that is Cadbury, peppermint chocolate, oh my god, I give that back to it. If it just wants seven, five nights a week, that's what it has, whatever it looks like, I really, really listen to my body. And it's funny that we were chatting today when I actually have COVID, I finally have COVID. And, you know, we were discussing yesterday whether or not we would still do this, he had a really great The only thing is that I feel I feel tired. And so even though I don't have any any other symptoms, other than a bit of tiredness, I took yesterday off and, and lay down and did some tapestry just thinking, Alright, my body's telling me something, I'm going to listen to it, instead of that whole night, I'm going to I'm going to brush through it, it's going to be fine. So to me it is about giving, worshipping my body.
Okay, because my my story's different to that I have had, you know, body image, you know, put on a lot of weight, you know, every diet, I've think I've tried it, you know, you look up in the dictionary, emotional eating, and you'd see my name there. And a lot of it has been about that visual of the body and not liking my body. And I think it's probably only been the last. But I couldn't even put it maybe five ish years. And I'm 55 were the same. It's only been in the recent years that I could say I do actually love my body. But it still beats and I say that with his hesitation you say it with confidence. And when we were chatting yesterday, when you when you said you weren't that you had COVID And you said I'm really honouring my recovery, because we don't know what this virus does to us long term. And I'm really making sure that I spend time to recover well. And I just loved hearing that. Because there are so many people that I meet who are still, you know, online has been great for us because it's opened up a lot of opportunities. But it's also been a real curse because people are sick, but they're still showing up. There's this expectation that they have to show up and work instead of recover. So I loved you saying that yesterday. And you know, we made that pact that if you weren't well this morning that we would reschedule and I'm you know
just talks about wearing pyjamas? Yes, who that is. Um, so when I hear that about you and your body image, like I get it and my heart, you know, and I'm so sorry that you had to go through that. And I understand that my experience in saying I love my body is unusual, especially for women. I love I accept that. It's unusual. And I don't mean to sort of crow over that. How evolved I am but I can say that I was the Tubby girl, certainly until maybe I was 20 You know, and I never sort of looked at my body and think it's anything other than serviceable. Yeah, that's what I want it to be. I don't need it to be thin. I don't need it to be sexy. I don't need it to be anything other than really serviceable and useful and practical. And that's why I love it because it just doesn't let me down. Yeah, so when I say that I love the usefulness of it. It's like a really great pair of scissors or something like that that you know are always going to be reliable and that's why I I look after it as much as I can and listen to it. But yeah, anyone you know anyone who is listening who does have those body image problems, you know, I hear you and I and I get you and I understand how difficult it is when we are held up to unrealistic standards of beauty our whole life. You know, I used to work for God for over 20 years who magazine which was the best job I ever had. It was incredible. But you know, I've seen how much effort goes into airbrushing stunning models and superstars. I've seen that they take you know 12 hours of airbrushing to get them cover ready. You know most people don't see that those people don't look fantastic. Without a whole lot of work holiday airbrushing and a whole team of people behind them. So it's a genuine
I find k i really love and you've said this something that stood out for me a number of times when we chat is that you have that healthy self esteem like when you talk about your body. I find that really inspiring to hear you say that because often when we're around people that are speaking negatively about themselves that's not cool either. Like I get why people do it but I think that if we can shift that, the way we look at things change the perspective, and I'm there was a couple of conversations. Katie's the superduper, journalist and is extraordinary at what she does. And when we were talking, I can't even remember the conversation that you you owned that you were just like, Yeah, I'm good at what I do. And I loved hearing it. Because we often don't hear people saying that about themselves either. And I think that's also been part of my journey, is that not owning my gifts or not acknowledging and there are things that when I look in, I just get so much inspiration from you, because you
It's beautiful for people to hear that to it. And not to just hear the year but
Well, again, and that's not because I'm trying to pump up No, no, not at all. You know, like, for me, I think in certainly in Australia, remember when you were little, and kids would say, Oh, you love yourself. And that was like one of the worst things they could say to you, along with your egg sandwiches stink or whatever it was, you know, like, you couldn't possibly love yourself or bad thing. And I absolutely grew up with that. But no, I I love I love it. I mean, it starts with us. If we don't love ourselves, then how does that make us lovable for other people? Yeah, and well, look, I am good at what I do. And I was really good at breastfeeding. They're like my, I can read I can write and I can just breastfed breastfeeding, they will my sort of life achievements, that I think that you do have to have that confidence. And I'm here with you, Catherine ever summered in been to Italy or to Greece in summer, okay, will say for me that is just just so inspirational when you go to Positano or wherever. And you have looked down at yourself that morning and thought, Oh, I've put on three kilos on this trip. Do my babies still fit and you feel a bit self conscious, and you get down there and there's other NAMAs by the water in their bikinis, there is no one pace going on. They're all in their bikinis. And they're eating jalopy by the water, they are going on, they are laughing, they're sitting with all their mates, there is absolutely no sort of self consciousness about their bodies other than Isn't life incredible. And, you know, I find I, you know, I first went to European 88, when I was 20, or 21, you know, and I've been vaccines and every time I go to a beach just so I can soak up the lessons of those beautiful European Human, who are just have so much, you know, it is it's just confidence that your body is doing a job. And, you know, I'm I'm going to, I'm going to wear a bikini if I want to, I don't, I'm not going to be self conscious about it. My mom is 44 kilos. She's a tiny little woman you've ever seen. And she is constantly going on. And I say let's go on a holiday, I couldn't possibly put a put by the song. You know, I'm too fat for that. So I grew up with a mum who was very much the opposite that I am. And maybe that's why I'm maybe yeah, I will be in a bikini. And in fact, it's in my list of funeral instructions that I am buried in my favourite black Seafolly bikini. Like very sad for the, you know, for the undertaker who has to prepare me, because I hope I'll be 95 at that stage. But yeah, I'm going out in my in my favourite black bikini because it says much more about who I am than any sort of dress.
Love that. I love that. I need to I haven't thought about my funeral instructions. But I reckon I'm going to maybe I'm aiming for 96 and I'll be in a nursing home doing the line dancing session. And I'm just going to drop over
to your nursing home. Because yeah, I will be doing that with you. Yeah, help me make our children look after us. And they can run the line dancing classes for it. Well, that can be a lot of time with those kids.
I've got an image. So it's the line dancing instructor that I'm going to be dropping in front of.
You're going to say that about the line dancing instructor. Isn't a passion behind the kitchenette.
Maybe, maybe? Sorry, John, I hope you're not listening to this. He'll be maybe he's the line dancing instructor. Maybe you'll be you'll be 100
instead of like, that sounds unreal. And then we can speak later. Better than Nutbush. Yeah,
excellent. Yeah. Oh, gorgeous. This is kind of brought us to the end of our chat. And before we close what's next for you? Let's future Kate, look.
Future case. That's such a great question. I want to I'm not sure you and I started my business last year and it's going really well but I'm still not quite sure what I want to be when I grow up. Like I'm still sort of tossing that up. Is this what I want to do or is there some way that I can actually add more value to the world because, you know, my job so far feels very much like it's been about entertaining people. rather than actually providing anything useful, and again, I'm not gonna go. Yeah, I don't know that it has. So I think that I'm looking for something a bit more bit more meaningful. Yeah. So I think that's what it is whatever that looks
like maybe what you could do is get your notebook out and just start thinking about what that could look like, you know, what I do, just in closing, is get people to think about how do they want to feel in the different stages in areas of life. So not necessarily looking at, I'm going to be a blogger, or I'm going to do but how do I want to feel, because sometimes when we get really focused on the what it's not really doesn't bring about the joy that we that we want to experience. So if you want to feel a certain way, then the universe will often present us with things. And sometimes we expect those and sometimes we don't, that probably doesn't really matter. Because if we've got those feelings, then life's pretty good.
Say I love that. And it's times like this where I remember all that tried. She's a really great coach, because they see you as this beautiful friend that I can blah, blah, blah. Whatever we want to talk about, and I love your makeup. Tell me what it is. So you take me by surprise, sometimes I think that is right. She's an excellent.
Coach. But that's yeah,
okay, no cheater, Catherine, that makes perfect sense. And I think that's what I mean, when I say that I want it to be something useful. I've got that sort of feeling, but I can't quite solidify it yet. It's like a sort of a ghostly thing that's floating around.
And just let it unfold. I think if you try and force that sort of stuff, then you're forcing something that's probably not going to give you the what you want in the end. So just trust and let that unfold. And that's part of it, you know, to get those little feelings, those feelings, the senses, the there might be little images, you get or synchronicities that you bump into somebody, and they mentioned something and you go, Oh, actually, that feels good. To me. It's about when it feels good. That's a signal for me to go. Yeah, I'll put a little bit more effort into.
Okay, yeah. So that's how you that's how you're addressing your future happiness? That's what it's all about. Absolutely.
Yeah. For me, it's about how do I want to feel and I sort of divide my life up into different areas like my work, so I'm still working on I probably will be working while I'm still line dancing with that guy in the nursing. Yeah, you know, my family, my friends, my contribution, spirituality is a big thing for me as well. So my connection with my higher self and source, you know, my money and stuff that I have. So I think about how do I want to feel in each of those areas? And what am I going to commit to doing to so I can have those feelings? And what am I going to commit to not doing? So it's almost like a bit of a in all honesty cave. It's like my terms and conditions for life? And what do I want it to be like? And how do I want to feel? And what will I do so when I think about my health and well being that I am very conscious to move and to be active, that I won't put pressure on myself, if I don't get out and exercise one day, I'm not going to beat myself up. I'm not going to say those shitty things to myself that I used to say Are you're no good, because you can't even you know, you said you're going to do it. You can't stick to what it says like, well, do not today. That's okay. And so it's kind of shifting that. There's a lot of habits I think that I've that I've created over the years that have helped me to sort of keep in that. Keep on track with things. Yeah. Yeah. Cool. All right. Beautiful. I think we'll bring this to a close but um, so gosh, where can people find you? Where can people find you?
Oh, they can find me at www dot bad mother media.com.
Yeah, beautiful. And Instagram. If they're looking for you on Instagram. That's bad mother.
Bad mother media or Kate half Penny. Yeah, I have plenty. Yes. Both accounts. I'm a really bad social media poster. Which is ironic given my industry. But yes, I write a column every week for the age of 50 Morning Herald and I write a lot about my life in that. And so by the end of it I you know, I kind of feel it. I don't really it's a funny situation. Yeah, it's one of those things I need to get better at
or not. I think when you put a need to do something, I'm not sure that that's what I don't like that word need or should.
Are you coaching me again? Not Not at all. Genuinely Exactly right. Goodbye, my beautiful friends.
Thanks. Love you. Thank you so much for that. Yeah, so yeah,
thank you for listening. I hope you enjoyed the episode. You can spread the love by sharing it with a friend so she can have a little bit of what we had today. Don't forget to rate and review so we can get it into as many hearts and ears as possible. You can keep the conversation going on my happiness hive socials. And if you'd like some more high vibe happiness in your life, come and join me in our community of inspired and motivated women at the happiness lounge. This is my online membership club and your central hub for everything you will need to be truly happy and bounce out of bed every day living and loving your best and most beautiful life. To find out more pop over to the happiness hive website and click on the link working with Catherine. Until next time, Big hugs and happiness