Free program helps empty nester mums avoid homelessness

The Dream Architects - Michelle Lee & Mark O'Toole

WITH older women being recognised as the fastest-growing group of homeless people in Australia, a Gold Coast couple are out to help prevent the situation from getting worse by launching a free online course empowering empty nester mums for Mother’s Day.

A study by Housing for the Aged Action Group found about 240,000 women aged 55 or older and another 165,000 women aged 45-54 are at risk of homelessness in Australia. 

The Dream Architects co-founder/ human potential coach Michelle Lee will run a free four-week Empty Nester Mums Empowerment Program online from May 13 to June 3.

With her partner Mark O’Toole, she aims to raise the consciousness of empty nesters globally.

“We’ve noticed that empty nesters are even more isolated and lonely since Covid which could lead to homelessness,” Ms Lee said.

“They are so isolated, they are feeling irrelevant, lost, confused and unsupported and this is leading to increased depression, anxiety and other mental health issues.

“Our goal is to take empty nesters from feeling lost and alone to being on purpose and feeling like they matter because they do.”

The couple have extensive personal development and business experience spanning 30 years.

Based in Tamborine Mountain, their vision is also to support young adults through mentoring and fundraising and a great way to do this is to empower their parents.

Michelle’s top 7 tips to help empower empty nester mums for Mother’s Day are:

  1. Focus on the quality of relationships - Deepen the connections you have by being present, listening with love and making eye contact. If you have an estranged relationship, be the courageous one, lead with love and with zero expectation.
  2. Tap into your inner wisdom - You have 45 plus years of experience, learnings and inner knowing. Trust it, even if you feel you don’t know everything or if you didn’t get everything right. No one does.
  3. Feel compassion - Just like you did when you were actively being a mum, you felt everything about your child and you cared deeply. Open up your heart again, to feel compassion for all, starting with yourself.
  4. Maintain regular schedules - Give your day some structure with regular and consistent schedules of the important things in life, like taking time to rest, do your gratitudes, take a walk, regular self care such as massage and positive self talk, play a musical instrument. Avoid long lists and overwhelm.
  5. Breathe - This is something we all consciously forget to do! A deep mindful breath is a fast and immediate recharge of your energy and clarity battery. It keeps you present, so your mind does not wander to the worries of the past or the future.
  6. Surround yourself with people who care - Take a good look at your circle of friends and family and make a decision as to who really cares, who has your back and stay close. If there are none, go looking!
  7. Seek support from friends, a life coach or mentor - Everyone needs support! When you are in the thick of emotions, it can be difficult to see where you are going, who you are being, and what you really want. A coach or mentor will help you feel empowered.

“Remember, you’re never done being a mum. Your children will always need you, no matter their age and the best gift you can do for them is to be an inspiration for them, by being who you truly want to be, dreaming big and by loving you,” she said.

For more details or to attend the program, visit the www.thedreamarchitects.com

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