I love that my last FB post got so many hits – “If you are going to doubt anything doubt your limits.”
It's the work I love - helping people get beyond their perceived limits by creating new road maps to get where they want to go.
Here’s the toolbox to take on the trip;
Tolerating difficult situations along the way and learning to move through them with more ease.
Calming your mind, decreasing the amount of chatter. It makes for greater clarity, more ease in decision making, more ability to hear your voice, tap into your gut.
Communication skills – asking for what you need, speaking with confidence, repairing relationships, maintaining and improving relationships.
Emotional intelligence – identifying accurately what you are feeling, knowing what to do with it, how to move through it, understanding the emotions of others around you. Regulating the intensity of your emotions – stay in the driver’s seat – don’t give it over to your emotions.
Presence – learning to be mindful and conscious as much as possible. Responding to what is really happening now. Not to what has happened in the past.
Thoughts – understanding the POWER of your thoughts – how they affect you, how they influence your life – your emotions, your decisions, beliefs…
Body awareness – learning to live more in your body rather than just being in your head thinking all the time. Being more in tune with the physical sensations of your body, your body language, your energy level.
Stress – learning how to move through stress more effectively and create feelings of well-being and a sense of relaxation.
If you are on the road breaking some old limits or are interested in creating a new road map - keep an eye on my posts. They will focus on these topics and give you tips and new ideas to try.
How many times have you said “I’m going to socialize more, start dating, get a new job, get healthier, take more time for myself…? ”
How many times have other things gotten in the way?
What do you need to jump – to really jump in and make it happen?
I took a big jump a few years ago when I moved and it paid off in spades. Not in every area, but in the areas that mattered the most - relationships, opportunities, gifts. And, in a million years, I never could have imagined how my life was going to change.
As my clients make change in their life, I ask them if they could have ever imagined that this would happen and they usually say “no”. They wanted this change in their life, hoped for it, but never really believed that it would happen. But, one day something happened, they became more serious about it and committed themselves to it.
Many times pain is the impetus that brings people to contact me. They have experienced too many missed opportunities, too much loss, too much sadness, too much fear, too much anger, too much holding in and not enough letting out of who they really are and who they really want to be. It can become stifling. It constricts our lives to a very small piece of the universe.
We all know life is short, life is not a dress rehearsal, life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans, life is now.
With that in mind, why not take time this season to clarify what is really important to you. Do those “if I had six months to live” exercises and see what comes up for you.
This is my last newsletter of the year and of the series. I have decided to take another jump and will start a private Facebook group next month.
If you are clear about your direction and are actively pursuing your goals, this group can be a place where you ask for feedback on an idea and support when you get stuck. You can share your wins and be part of a community of like-minded people with positive energy and the belief that they can achieve their dreams.
Jump in and commit to your life in 2019. And Happy New Year!!
Here is a quote from William Hutchinson Murray that captures how life can unfold the moment you commit to an idea. It’s taken from ”Lessons Learned from a Lifetime’s Climbing”.
“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative and creation, there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favour all manner of unforeseen incidents, meetings and material assistance which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. I have deep respect for one of Goethe’s couplets: Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now.”
William Murray was invited to join a friend on an expedition in 1951 to climb the Himalayas. It was a four month, 340 mile trek during which they reached seven summits. He said the Himalaya has finally taught me that man, given single-minded commitment, is, in the long run, not subject to impossible obstacles.
I haven’t posted a recipe in a long time but I was thinking about the link between what we eat and the energy that is available to us daily.
Much of the work I do as a coach, counselor, speaker, is about working with my clients to harness their energy in the most efficient way possible to get them where they want to go.
I help them get all their ducks in a row. It means making sure everything is in alignment to really propel them in the right direction.
I see life in a holistic way, meaning I believe everything in our life is connected, body, mind, spirit. Every aspect of our lives has the potential to either move us toward where we want to go or slow us down. Part of my work with my clients is to observe and identify what may be slowing them down and to work with them on that.
Food is fuel so here is a recipe I enjoy for breakfast. I have been eating a vegetarian diet for about seven years so I am always on the lookout for adding more protein to my diet. I also pay attention to food that is more alkaline based as acidic food tends to raise the level of inflammation in our body which can contribute to illness.
Here are some oatmeal ideas. Add as much as feels good to you and enjoy!!
1/2 cup rolled oats
2 cups water
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1 tablespoon ground flax seed
1 tablespoon coconut oil
Fresh or frozen berries
Tablespoon of chopped walnuts, walnuts, almonds...
1 or 2 tablespoons of gogi berries
Tablespoon or two of 0% plain yogurt, I like Fage
Sprinkle of cinnamon
Microwave the oats, water and berries (if frozen) for two minutes. You may need an extra minute if using frozen berries. Add the coconut oil and let sit for a few minutes, then add toppings.
We move forward on a daily basis in our lives and to do that we make hundreds of decisions. Most of them are made automatically as it’s impossible to analyze each option.
But recognizing that we do have choice is a huge factor in our continued growth. There are many junctures in our lives where something changes and a decision is needed to move forward.
We often notice this juncture when the impact is big. But when the impact isn’t felt so intensely we may not even register that the way we move forward is an option.
We hear a lot about consciousness these days. One definition is “the state of being awake and aware of one’s surroundings.”
Living consciously allows us to be more in touch with our everyday experiences. And when we hit those junctures where we need to make decisions, we have more information at our fingertips.
The choice to live consciously causes us to tolerate discomfort, delay gratification, practice patience, stay present and aware of our feelings and thoughts, ask questions, tolerate taking risks, communicate effectively and assertively, and trust that we will know when to take action and what action to take.
So, when an aspect of our life changes how conscious do we really want to be? Do we want to be open to the various permutations that may be available? Does it make sense to replicate what we had or to reflect and discern what is now needed?
Living consciously allows us the gift of choice. And the gift of continued growth and understanding of who we are in the whole of our lives.
I’m reading “The One Thing” by Gary Keller and I love this sentence, “The prescription for extraordinary results is knowing what matters to you and taking daily doses of actions in alignment with it.”
I work with a lot of clients who struggle with staying the course. They come in, feel really clear with what they want and where they want to go. They move in that direction for a period of time but then something happens. A situation comes up that stirs up a lot of emotion and they then begin to question their direction. Sound familiar?
This is where your skills pay off. This is what you have been practicing for. Take that step back and breathe. Look at the facts. Has anything really changed or have you just been triggered by something? Chances are it’s an old scenario that has played out countless times.
This is where it’s important to just stay focused on your goals. Make sure you have a plan mapped out that will lead to your goal. It’s not rigid or inflexible but it is a path. A path leads us in a certain direction. When you’re on a path, it’s not necessary to constantly reassess where you are going. It’s been mapped out thoughtfully. It allows you to just focus your energy on moving forward.
When something dramatically happens that alters the path, reassess and create a new plan. But until that happens just follow the path. Have check points where you assess your progress and create the next leg of the journey.
But in the meantime just keep moving forward and stay focused on what you want.
How can I shift my mood quicker when I feel frustrated or overwhelmed?
I received this question earlier in the week and I’m sure most of us can relate to it.
Shifting your mood is a skill and it takes practice. But as you practice and become more able to do this, you will be amazed at how freeing it is!
Emotions come and go all day. When we give attention to an emotion and begin to attach thoughts to it, it grows bigger and can get stuck, like a big black cloud. We might be thinking, “This always happens to me, Why me, Of course this would happen to me”… These type of thoughts almost always guarantee the black cloud will grow larger and will not budge.
Have you noticed how animals tend to just let things go? They don’t linger over situations but just get back in the game.
Here’s a few ideas to try out –
Start the day with an intention – “I am looking forward to this day and my goal is to maintain a positive and optimistic mood.” Say it out loud, write it down, and keep referring to it during the day. It is your compass.
Begin to pay more attention throughout the day to how you are feeling. You can set your phone to vibrate every 20 minutes. Just check in to how you are feeling and make a small shift if needed. If you are feeling down, is there a reason? If nothing has happened, try to improve your mood by getting up, moving around, get a drink, refer to your intention and start again.
Use humor – If you begin to notice repetitive thoughts or emotions that you feel in certain situations, it can be fun to bring a little humor to the situation. “Oh, here we go again, LOL, I should have figured they would say that LOL.” The difference is you are taking charge of the emotion, putting a spin on the situation in your favor.
Lastly, start bringing more attention to your emotions and thoughts. Begin to notice patterns and make some changes if they aren’t enhancing your life.
It’s the end of the month and an opportunity to look at the progress you have made toward your dreams. I loved the quote from Belva Plain, “Don’t be afraid of the space between your dreams and reality”.
What did you choose to work on and what’s happened over the month?
It’s so easy for most people to answer “nothing” to this question and to feel bad. But what about recognizing that in the space between your dreams and reality, there is a lot of reality! Some of that reality changes our game plan, can slow it up quite a bit, or even stop it.
So, if there wasn’t a lot of concrete progress from last month to this month take the time to understand why and identify what actually happened. Unexpected situations, time limitations, last minute schedule changes, exhaustion, loss of motivation…?
Reality is reality. If we want to accomplish our dreams we have to work with reality and continue to modify our plans but not give up our plans.
If you weren’t able to achieve what you wanted, did you stay firm in your belief that your dream was attainable? Did you continue to keep it in your mind and dream about it?
There are three articles at the end of this newsletter that look at the topic of visualization - our ability to effect change simply through the power of concentrated and focused thought. In one study, the subjects use the power of their thoughts and imagery to increase their muscle strength without lifting any weights in real time.
So forward motion doesn’t always have to be visible. If we aren’t able to concretely achieve all we have set out to do, we can continue to hold strong thoughts and beliefs in our ability to accomplish the task. We can see ourselves doing it in our mind’s eye. It’s a critical piece of the work that is often overlooked.
If you made progress this month – YAHOO!! I hope you took the time to feel satisfaction and pride.
What did you learn about how you work? Is there a best time of day, mindset to get into before you start, clean off your desk before you start paperwork, make sure you eat and have energy? Keep revising how you work to capture what works best for you.
Before you start the new month reassess your goals and create your next steps.
I posted about beginning to tackle a work project I had dreamed about for years. With the help of my accountability partners I made some good movement on it. I am now looking at the next steps and will pick the next priority.
I also tried something out of my comfort zone. I have had a dream for years about learning to sail or at least being on a sailboat. For me the first step was learning to swim to feel more confident and comfortable. So I literally took a plunge last night with my first swimming lesson. Wahoo!!
Feel free to email me about the places where you get stuck in working toward your goals and I can post some ideas next month.
Here are the articles;
Can you build strength with visualization exercises?
I had a thought after I saw how popular Howie’s post was. Why is it that he received 264 views, 55 likes, 5 shares, and a comment?
I started to think about how our mind works. There is so much information that it filters on a daily basis that is based on our past experiences. It filters out what it thinks we don’t want, what we don’t need, what we don’t like, what doesn’t feel comfortable. It filters in what is familiar, what we know, what we’ve done before, what it thinks we want…
It may be that Howie’s post is perceived as safe, recalls good things, creates a good feeling, and it gets a lot of clicks.
So what we’re looking at is our minds ability to quickly filter information based on past conditioning in order that we can move through the day efficiently.
Howie’s post didn’t seem to trigger any red flags, didn’t slam the door. In fact the door was wide open when I compared the results of his post to the majority of my posts.
Here’s the food for thought.
So who actually is giving your mind its operating instructions?
Are you clearly setting the agenda on a day to day basis, learning to increase your awareness of your thoughts/feelings so you know what is going on upstairs, or is it on automatic pilot, based on old experiences and conditioning?
Are you missing out on opportunities by allowing old unconscious conditioning to filter out what may not be comfortable, new, unfamiliar?
Are we living today based on what we knew yesterday and is it really accurate today?
Take a look at my post, “Step I”, to get back in the driver’s seat.
Do you sometimes agonize over small tasks before finally feeling satisfied with them?
Try to bring attention to your tendency to make things “perfect” and begin to develop a practice of assessing how “perfect” it really needs to be.
Here’s a scenario - I have an A average in a class, have a ton of things going on in my life right now, and have a paper due this week. Let’s figure out which scenario is the better fit, A or B.
Scenario A - My normal tendency might be to work really hard on this paper, do a ton of research, take hours going over the phrasing, make many changes before turning it in, feel really good about the paper, get in bed at 2am, be exhausted at work the next day.
Scenario B – Realize I have an A average in this class, identify what other priorities I have right now, identify how much time I have for this paper, plan accordingly as I do the research and edits, feel good about the paper, recognize I could have done more but realize this covers the topic adequately, hit send, get to bed at 11am, feel rested and satisfied the next day.
Without attention we will apply the same level of energy and diligence to all of our tasks. Learn to move through tasks more quickly by assessing which ones really deserve your utmost attention.
Understand how an “all or nothing” approach can leave you exhausted. Practice being in that middle area and get comfortable with doing less when it is called for.
If you are working toward a goal this will be really helpful to keep moving you forward rather than getting stuck on the small details.