As a blogger I spend a lot of time online. It also features a lot in my “day job”. As a result I see the highs and lows – the most helpful, lovely, supportive bits of online personas, and some utterly horrible ones too. I’ve never really understood the compelling need to make a negative personal comment or judgement on someone else’s work, their views or how they live their life. Generally speaking, I don’t have the energy to. I have once or twice been trolled, or at least someone has attempted to but I’ve not realised it until after the event. Their comments garnered nothing but a bright and breezy response from me. Occasionally I’ve received some snarky comments on Twitter from people I haven’t followed back and they’re offended.  I have also seen some pretty unpleasant comments on Facebook and on Twitter, and occasionally even seen comments on blog posts that I’ve thought were quite close to the bone. So what can you do if you get a negative comment online you don’t like or upsets you? Ask yourself if replying will make any difference. Remember it’s impossible to have a one way argument, two people need to be involved.  Don’t feed the troll, no matter how tempting the urge may be. Remember that it’s not directed at you, not really. They don’t know you, so their remark says more about them than you. Someone disagrees with your comment or view? Okay, perhaps it doesn’t gel with their world… View Post

This chilli recipe is incredibly easy to make and kids love it. You can use mild chilli powder to keep it child friendly, or add a hotter powder or chilli flakes or fresh chilli if you want it more spicy. The texture is so soft it’s beautiful with rice but also good with chips, wedges or a baked potato. It takes about 10 minutes to prepare and then the slow cooker takes care of the rest. Perfect for busy parents! Ingredients 2 onions, roughly chopped or diced 500g lean steak mince 1 tin plum tomatoes 1 tin red kidney beans 2 tablespoons tomato puree 1 dessert spoon mild chilli powder 2 teaspoons ground cumin 1/2 teaspoon of salt A couple of squares of plain dark chocolate or a handful of chocolate chips 2 dessert spoons of flour   Method Add all the ingredients to the slow cooker and combine. Cook on low for 8 hours. Serve. … told you it was easy didn’t I?  

“We’re going to cross this field with two buckets and one plank, whilst carrying a pound of mint humbugs. If we do this, we’ll be a better team!” No, what you’ll be is a group of snarky people. What you’ll have is a group of people ruining the clothes their hard earned money has paid for, snapping at each other for minor infractions, and resenting the day you were ever born. We don’t do this sort of malarkey to build relationships with friends or make our family dynamics better. Let’s face it, for many of us we limit that type of enforced organised fun to once a year – Christmas. So why do many managers or employers think that throwing together an assortment of people with nothing in common that their workplace will have a positive effect? It increasingly seems to be the go to option in fixing any issues with staff engagement or unhappy teams. Is it because employers increasingly feel that its’ their responsibility to help people like each other, or is it just a hangover from the 80s that workplace culture can’t quite shift? The majority of people come in to work every day with a few simple objectives – do their job well, be paid appropriately, and to be able to coexist with their co-workers. Developing friendships is a bonus but they grow organically and takes time. I really can’t see how forcing a group of people to go potholing for a day, learn to juggle,… View Post