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If Only Life Came with a Tracking System…

Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality, Relationships & Family

then we’d never end up“losing ourselves”

First of all, losing oneself isn’t always a bad thing.  

Sometimes plans just go awry. We take risks and try new things and it just doesn’t turn out as we hoped. Kudo’s to us for living in line with our passions. Taking risks in life is part of what makes us feel alive. It can be what separates the meek and the confident, the complacent and the ambitious, the safe and the successful. If you’re feeling lost and this is why, you don’t need me to tell you to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and carry on, you know that and hopefully are ready to do just that.  

However, if you’re reading this and when you reflect on your life, you’re wondering who you’ve become because it somehow isn’t who you want to be, this is for you.  

What does it mean to have “lost” oneself?  

It happens. We start living on autopilot, going through the motions of life without realizing we’ve abandoned our desire to manifest greatness. Dreams and passions that once inspired us are now washed-up and faded ideas that exist somewhere else. We are no longer driven by inspiration, but by security and comfort.  

We start to feel lost because we have simply “parked” in life. We work just hard enough to not get fired, earn enough to just get by, cherish relationships just enough to not lose them, take care of ourselves just enough to not get sick…. We just survive life but hardly thrive (Les Brown). 

Sometimes we get stuck in the past. Maybe things were wonderful, and we are holding on to the nostalgia; maybe they were horrible and we haven’t worked through the pain, or maybe they are simply familiar and a false sense of security and control exists when the present is so unpredictable. Whatever the reason is, yesterday is gone and if we are not present in the NOW, we are missing out because the world that keeps moving with or without us.  

There are also situations when we show up for the now but are living based on what other people believe is right. We married the person our family would approve of, we entered a career path based purely on financial stability, our hobbies are chosen by what level of social acceptance they have. Most of the time, we don’t even know that the “opinions” running in the background of our choice aren’t even ours until we slow down. When we do, it is an epiphany that the inner voices we are listening to are those of parents, teachers, friends, but not our own. We go through life doing exactly what’s expected of us and eventually, it overwhelms (PsychAlive).  

In short, people become lost in life is because they have disconnected from their hearts and souls. They pay too much attention to their rational minds, and to what everyone else has to say, and they can no longer hear the voices of their hearts, nor can they connect to the wisdom of their souls. 

How to find yourself 

Why life is so much better after you find yourself? 

You wake up one day and you ask yourself, how did I get here? I had plans and dreams and goals, this is not what I wanted. It’s ok, you have to get lost at times, it’s part of the self-discovery process (Psychology Today). The most worthwhile adventure of our lives is discovering who we really are. When we find ourselves on the deepest level it profoundly changes how we experience life.  

12 things that happen when we live authentically:  

1. We gain confidence, self-esteem and a sense of happiness.  

2. We experience a profound sense of inner peace 

3. We trust our judgment and are not afraid to make mistakes 

4. We take on new challenges because they are gratifying  

5. We become whole and realize the true happiness comes from being part of something bigger than oneself.  

6. Loneliness and emptiness disappear 

7. We have the energy for what we want because we aren’t exhausting ourselves pleasing others  

8. We begin to feel optimistic and are ready to move forward, no matter how stuck we were.  

9. Our passions are ignited; we are living on purpose. 

10. We procrastinate less and have more motivation. 

11. We become the best version of ourselves: the best spouse, parent, sibling, co-worker, etc., which automatically improves our relationships.  

12. Because like attracts like and we begin to surround ourselves with the right people who support us.  

How a Life Coach Can Help 

A life coach is one of the best resources for those who feel lost. A coach is trained to help you to manifest what you want in your life, identify what stumbling blocks are holding you back and help you develop useful strategies for self-improvement. 

They will offer you an unbiased and fresh perspective by asking important questions aimed at helping you find your answers. They will collaborate with you to support you through transition, keep you motivated and hold you accountable while providing tools to help you grow and stay true to yourself.  

If you’re ready to experience coaching risk-free, register with Life Coach Library and receive up to 3 complimentary coaching sessions.  

Final thoughts:  

One of the greatest satisfactions we can ever know is to discover who we truly are and live authentically. Too many people go from cradle to grave without experiencing this joy. We confuse self-understanding with self-indulgence, and never really know: Who am I really 

Finding yourself may sound like psychobabble or a being self-absorbed but our understanding of ourselves is the basis of every decision we make in life. It’s a matter of recognizing our personal power and limitations. 

To know and embracing one’s authentic self is to truly find inner peace and happiness.  

Find out if Life Coaching is right for you! Take the quiz in under a minute. https://www.opinionstage.com/szortyka1/is-coaching-right-for-you

How to get unstuck and move forward

Career & Business, Health & Wellness, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality, Recovery, Relationships & Family

There comes a time in everyone’s life when they feel overwhelmed, confused, depressed, in a funk, or just plain “stuck” – it happens to the best of us! It can be hard to get “unstuck” on our own, especially if it is our best thinking and acting that got us into a funk to begin with.

Why do we get stuck sometimes?

The reason we get stuck is because this is real life and not a fairytale where some conflict is overcome and everyone lives happily ever after. Real life doesn’t always go according to plan.   We can’t give people a copy of a script and expect them to follow their lines and act the way we want them to. No matter how hard we work, we don’t always have control over the outcomes.   At the end of the day, life is not always fair.

There are so many reasons we get stuck. Here are 6:

  • We simply cannot accept the outcomes of a situation and move on.
  • We believe we should be something or someone we are not.
  • We’ve compromised our values and settled for less.
  • We’re creatures of habit, we get into a comfort zone and are afraid or unwilling to step out of it.
  • We feel guilty or shameful about being stuck so we beat ourselves up.   Negativity only reinforces whatever is not working and keeps us stuck.
  • We repeat a pattern over and over again, thinking “this time” the results will be different, but they never are. In fact, many times they get worse.

Advice to help you get out of a rut today!

Regardless of why we are stuck, what matters most is “how does one get unstuck and move forward with their life?”   Deciding to take some action is the first step to getting out of a rut.

  • Let Go!: When we resist accepting things for what they are vs. what we want it to be, we suffer. It is healthy to experience our emotions, even sadness and disappointment, but getting trapped by them is destructive. Holding on to anger, grief, or guilt is living in the past and robs us of the ability to experience joy in the now. Acceptance is often the key to peacefulness.
  • Think small: Looking at the whole situation can be really overwhelming and cause analysis paralysis (overthinking something so much you cannot make a move).   Even the smallest step moving in the right direction will get you closer to your goal than waiting for the perfect execution. Start with small manageable changes and they will gradually become bigger, more impactful ones.
  • Get an attitude adjustment: Instead of looking at situations as problems, think of them as challenges and make solving them a game.   No matter how bad things seem, there is always something worse and much to be grateful for; instead of feeling like you have to do something, tell yourself you get to and see how much better it feels. This works for everything.   Try and focus on what’s right instead of what’s wrong; this will give you an energy boost to move forward.
  • Don’t go it alone:   Chances are your best thinking is in part why you are in a funk.   No shame or judgement; we all do the best we can with what we have to work with.   The problem is, we all have “blind spots” too and having a support system that is both objective and honest will shed a new perspective on things in the most helpful way.
  • Get comfortable with being uncomfortable and act: Insanity is often defined as “doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different result”. If you want a different result, do something different! Sometimes just doing something is different.   Don’t worry if it’s not your ultimate best plan, as long as it is in line with your final goal. Even the best ideas and plans mean nothing if not followed up with action.

Remember, you are not alone! We all get stuck from time to time. The longer we stay stuck the harder it may seem to breakthrough. However, the change you wish for is possible as long as you are willing to make it happen.

If you’re still not sure if coaching is right for you, take our quiz, it’s under a minute!

Master Motivation in 6 Simple Steps

Career & Business, Health & Wellness, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality, Recovery, Relationships & Family

The most outstanding characteristic of successful people is the ability to set goals and take action to achieve them. Everyone can do both. Where many fall short is not in setting goals but taking the disciplined and sustained action needed for success.

Why??? Could it be people often go about tapping into the kind of deep motivation that will fuel the process from start to finish completely wrong? They muster up enthusiasm, will-power and determination and intensely focus on the “outside” stuff that must be controlled to produce desired outcomes.

While this may work for some people all the time, and all people some of the time, most people cannot sustain this and go the distance, and they repeatedly come up short. It’s like swimming upstream or running against the wind. So much energy is exerted yet eventually their enthusiasm peters-out and they are simply tired. What’s worse – not only is goal not met, but feelings of failure creep in to wreak havoc and leave them even less motivated than before.

Here are 6 strategies to boost motivation and jump start success today!

1. Create a crystal-clear vision: You must know what you really, really, really want and why you want it, or you cannot achieve it. First, think of a goal and imagine you already have it. Take a few moments to really let yourself experience what it will be like when you get there. Try to involve all 5 senses (sight, sound, taste, touch, smell). When you have a crystal-clear vision of what you want, you can begin to lean into that goal as if it has already been achieved and act the part.

For example: You want change careers and become a teacher.

  • See yourself walking through crowded hallways to a classroom; visualize how your classroom will be set up;
  • Hear the chatter of students quieting down as the bell rings. Hear yourself ask a probing question and engaging students in discussion.
  • Feel the dust of dry erase marker on the whiteboard; the stack of papers you are collecting for review. Feel the sense of satisfaction you have when you see progress.
  • Smell the fresh make-up and mix of perfumes from blossoming high school girls or the construction paper and glue for elementary students’ activities.
  • Taste the coffee you’ll sip in your classroom while planning (I do not recommend imagining the awful cafeteria lunches that hopefully you’ll never have to eat 😊)

2. Know why you want it. Go at least 3 deep in asking yourself why. The answers can be extrinsic (money, schedule) or intrinsic (pride, satisfaction):

  • Why do you want to teach? There’s a shortage of teachers and I like helping people.
  • Why do you like helping others? I’m good at finding what makes people tick and it feels good to help them.
  • What feels good about it? Deep connection with others it what makes me feel alive.

When you uncover your reason behind your reason, you are uncovering gold! Within the deeper reason is what your true motivation and passion are and identify a true purpose.

Ever notice how most people perform better under pressure? It’s because deadlines (or whatever is causing that pressure) give them a sense of purpose. That’s why people go on diets before big events, clean their house best before company arrives, save more money when they have something specific they want to buy. Acting deliberate and with a sense of purpose will keep you fired up, especially when the unexpected comes up.

3. Write your own eulogy: Yes, you read that correctly. As morbid as that sounds, many a great motivational speaker and writer suggest doing this. I have done it myself and must agree. None of us are here forever and beginning with the end in mind will help you to truly define what who you want to be and what you want to do.

Imagine those last few minutes where you are looking back on your life like you are watching a movie about yourself. What kind of person were you? What did you accomplish? What did you not accomplish that you wish you did? What is the one thing you will be most remembered for?

Using this insight, work backward. Make a plan that you can start today that will, over time, get your life aligned with to how you want the story to read. What is the smallest first step (see #4) you can take right now? What get’s in the way of you taking it? Are you afraid?

Everyone has some fear. You’re not human if you don’t. but fear shouldn’t run your life. Instead, run to what you fear, it’s never as bad as you imagine and on the other side of that fear is what you really want. Just the act of doing something you’re afraid of is empowering and creates confidence which is where success lives.

General George S. Patton is often quoted in saying “Fear kills more often than death!” You only die once, but fear kills you every time you give in to it!

4. Do one thing daily that is out of your comfort zone. If you want to lose 20 pounds but feel stuck, don’t lie to yourself in thinking if you can’t stick to the perfect diet and exercise routine, it’s not worth trying! Pass on one snack that you usually have or do just 5 minutes more exercise than your daily average.

Focusing on everything needed to reach the end goal is often overwhelming and leads to greater procrastination. Even the smallest step is a step and doing something small today will get you much closer to goal than thinking about big steps for weeks, months, or years without action. Give yourself credit for even the small victories, as feeling successful will create more energy and motivation to do more things that lead to success.

Don’t be a perfectionist. To some, perfectionism seems virtuous, but it can be self-sabotaging in so many ways. Perfectionists are almost never satisfied and

usually rob themselves of feeling joy with their accomplishments. Don’t let this be you.

Lastly, how you act is who you become. Doing one thing daily that is in line with your goal is how you become the person you want to be and achieve your goals.

5. Never be the smartest or most ambitious person you know. Surround yourself with winners:

People who are optimistic and positive thinkers are not only the most pleasant to be around, they are typically more creative, inspiring, and successful. When you’re looking for ideas and influences to keep you moving forward, you must draw on something bigger than yourself. Open yourself up to new ideas through other people who have what you want to achieve. Even if you don’t use their ideas, they may inspire your own creative genius. Have a friend or mentor or a life-coach who will help you come up with winning strategies and keep you honest and accountable. You must do it yourself, but you don’t have to do it alone.

If you’re surrounded by pessimists and cynics, you’re in a toxic environment and nothing extraordinary comes from toxicity. If you can’t lose them completely, keep a strong network of positive thinkers to help you stay on track.

6. Live in the NOW. It’s the only place real happiness can exist.

Yesterday is gone. Realistically, your memories of it are probably either full of guilt or nostalgia.

Tomorrow isn’t here. If you’re living in tomorrow, you’re either worrying about things you can’t control, or you could be confusing hope with discontent.

If you’re not happy NOW, you won’t be “when…” Hoping for something better means something is missing now and truth is when happiness depends on something outside of NOW, it only lasts for 20 minutes and then you’ll focus on the next think you need to be happy.

If you’re not happy now, try a gratitude list. No matter what life is handing you, if you’re sitting upright and reading this you likely have something to be grateful for. Read: Gratitude for Happiness.

Final thoughts:

These are just a handful of ways you can take control of your inner voice and get the motivation juices flowing. There are countless others, the key is finding what works for you. Wanting to achieve a goal is fruitless if youre not willing to make a change that includes action.

These strategies are ones I’ve learned over 30 years of passionately pursuing personal growth. In that time, I have read dozens of self-help books that have inspired core-level changes in my thinking. It’s not possible to credit every book and author that may have influenced this post but I’d like to shout out big thanks to Dr. Joe Vitali, Steve Covey, Steve Chandler, Tom Hoobyar, Susan Sanders and Tom Dotz, whose written works truly are the motivation behind this post.

If you’re still not sure if coaching is right for you, take our quiz, it’s under a minute!

6 Times You Should Hire a Life Coach

Career & Business, Health & Wellness, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality, Recovery, Relationships & Family

When is the best time to hire a Life Coach?

Studies on the effectiveness of life-coaching show that 99% of people who work with a coach have a positive experience. According to a survey conducted by The International Coaching Federation’s nearly that same number find it effective and report they will work with a coach again in the future.

So when do people hire a life coach?

We have found that every great coach has a great coach. Here are the times great coaches will work with their coaches and we suggest you do too:

1. You’re inspired but unsure “I’m gonna make this happen but HOW do I make it happen?

You have a dream, a vision, and/or a goal. You’ve either tried and didn’t get there; started with excitement and enthusiasm, only to peter-out halfway through; or you simply do not know where to start. Whether you want to lose a few pounds, find the love of your life, make a total career switch, or build the business of your dreams, a great coach can help you overcome obstacles, strategize next steps, keep you accountable and motivated, and support you while you create your dream. They also can see your “blind-spot” and help you avoid making costly mistakes.

2. You wake up one day feeling blah and realize “Nothing is happening”

You’re simply stuck. Things aren’t bad but they aren’t great either. Nothing is really exciting you and you’re just out of ideas. A coach can help you uncover why you’re stuck, form a collaborative think-tank with you, and reenergize your plans to start moving forward. They will help you reignite passion for life and find your purpose, causing a whole new perspective will cause a total paradigm shift.

3. You’re overwhelmed and wonder “What the heck is happening?”

Sometimes in life things are beyond our control and nothing seems go right or make sense. There are always things we cannot control but the one piece we can control is ourselves. Sometimes the root is our own belief systems, others it is because we have changed while than others haven’t, or have we just changed differently OR beliefs that worked in the past no longer serve us anymore. Having a skilled and objective coach can help to quickly identify any beliefs that are running in the background and raise your conscious awareness and making moving forward virtually effortless.

4. You’re so excited “Something wonderful happened

Yay for YOU! You started a new business, got promoted, married or had a baby, suddenly you don’t recognize your life anymore because life as you knew it no longer exists. Change, even when it is fantastic, can throw us off center. So many unexpected things come with change, even good ones. Your coach can help you navigate this new beginning and support you in transition.

5. You’re in a good place but “Now what happens?

Maybe you’ve just overcome a major obstacle and are out of the weeds so to speak. Now what? Overcoming a crisis can be exhausting and leave us feeling empty and off center. When things go from crisis-mode to maintenance, its not always easy to shift gears back into production. Fortunately for you, you are closer than you think! A great coach will help you figure out when your next steps can be. They will help you create that amazing life you’ve been dreaming about and support you through exciting elements that may a little scary but in the most wonderful way

6. You’re not feeling up to par “Something Terrible happened

Life is not always kind. Loved ones pass away, relationships end in heart-break, healthy people succumb to illness, jobs are lost…. It can just really stink sometimes. I am so sorry if this is you. Having a strong support system is so important when life takes a turn. It’s not always easy to turn to friends in these

situations and having someone who allows it to be “all about you” by offering you their undivided attention and compassion allows you to process in a confidential and safe place. There are no shortcuts through the grieving process, but a good coach can help you find the path back to living happily and lighten the sadness and despair.

Ultimately, you are embarking on a life-changing experience if you are open-minded and willing to try new things. A coach will improve your self-awareness, help you stay focused, and access your greatest talents while keeping you motivated to go the distance. You might be able to do this on your own if you are super-disciplined and ambitious, but you can do it so much quicker with motivation and accountability behind you.

If you’re still not sure if coaching is right for you, take our quiz, it’s under a minute!

5 TIPS TO ENGAGE AND RETAIN YOUR EMPLOYEES

Career & Business, Life Coach Library

Organizations today need to rely on the commitment and engagement of their employees in order to thrive.

Sadly, only 15% of employees worldwide are engaged in their jobs according to a Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace report. (Gleeson, B., 2017). Equally concerning is the high cost of turnover. In a 2018 Retention Report: Truth and Trends in Turnover revealed that U.S. employers were expected to pay $600 billion in turnover costs in 2018 predicted to increase to $680 billion by 2020 according to the study. (Tarallo, M., 2018).

If this trend continues, organizations will struggle to survive. With the way our economy is today, more jobs available than people to fill them, organizations will find themselves struggling if they cannot retain their employees. I wholeheartedly believe that engaged employees are a company’s most important asset. Leaders need to make employee engagement a core responsibility knowing that it is an investment in the organization.

Here are five tips to consider for engaging and retaining your employees:

1. Be the leader employees want to follow.

Numerous studies show that the number one reason employees leave their jobs is because of their supervisor. Leadership matters. We need to continually invest in our own professional development so we can be the leader our employees want to follow. We all have areas for improvement.

Employees often complain that their supervisor does not listen to them. Effective communication is a critical leadership skill and this doesn’t just equate to speaking. Active listening is incredibly important. Take time from your busy schedule to listen to your employees. They want to be heard and know that their thoughts and opinions matter. To keep employees engaged, leaders must show their employees they can be trusted. They must be approachable and show their employees that they genuinely care about them.

2. Start early. Employee engagement and retention starts upon hire.

Retention efforts should start on day one. Create a robust onboarding and training process so new employees can acquire the necessary knowledge, skills and behaviors to become engaged members of the team. Effective onboarding also reduces employee ramp-up time. New employees should know exactly what is expected of them, and have the appropriate resources and training to help them be successful. Consider assigning a new employee a buddy, someone who can show them around, introduce them to others and make them feel welcome.

3. Mentor and coach your employees.

Don’t wait for the annual performance review to provide performance feedback to your employees. Meet often especially in the first year. Take the opportunity to coach for performance improvement. Nurture the strengths and talents of your staff. Help your employees create a career plan and give them opportunities to grow. Make it part of your mission as a leader to help your employees attain their career aspirations. If career advancement is part of their career plan, mentor and prepare them for the next level. When appropriate, give your employees new experiences by having them accompany you to meetings and appointments.

Mentoring builds loyalty, helps employees feel valued, and is engaging.

4. Recognize accomplishments.

Everyone needs to feel valued. Recognizing accomplishments and showing appreciation goes a long way towards driving employee engagement. Employees will want to stay with you for the long haul. Recognition also helps reinforce what you’d like to see the employee do more of. Recognizing accomplishments could be a simple thank you or a nice handwritten note. It’s also important to know what kind of recognition means the most to your employees. Some may like to be publicly recognized while others may simply prefer one-on-one recognition.

5. Inspire, demonstrate your passion and commitment.

Be able to communicate a powerful vision for the company. Show your commitment and enthusiasm for the mission and vision of the company. What really matters is when leaders can create enthusiasm and empower their employees. Your enthusiasm can be contagious!

Are you ready to advance with a coach?

Life Coach Library was designed by coaches who have been clients and know how to work with busy professionals. Now you can conveniently experience the impact a coach can make and without risk. Simply register, fill out a questionnaire so that our coaches can get a snapshot of you and your goals, and receive up to three coaching consultations from certified coaches who specialize in your area of need.

Submitted by Robbie K. Carlson – Life & Leadership Coach http://robbiekcarlson.com/

How to Form Habits That Will Help You Reach Your Goals

Career & Business, Health & Wellness, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality

One of the keys to reaching a new goal is to have habits in place that support that goal. If your current habits are counter-productive, you’ll need to change them or face the reality of not reaching your goals.

How do success habits help you reach your goals?

Suppose you have the goal of running a marathon: if you don’t already have the habit of running regularly, your chances of you reaching is very low. Running regularly gets you closer to attaining your goal in several ways, including getting you in great physical shape and strengthening your endurance.

Developing supportive habits can be easier than you think and far more powerful than you can imagine!

Identify the Habits You Need

Before you create new, positive habits, you’ll want to figure out which habits will help you attain your goals. For every goal, there are habits that can pretty much guarantee your success. Reflect on your goals and what actions you can take to help bring them about.

Here are some habits that people who always reach their goals have:

1. Look for daily habits. Habits you practice each day are much easier to put into place and keep than those that are less frequent.

2. Keep it simple. The more complex the task, the less likely you are to stick with it. If you really do need to implement a complex habit, start with a simpler version and then add more complexity later. Set some SMART goals to develop new habits in your routine.

3. Be specific. It’s not enough to just specify what you’re going to do; include the how, when, and where as well. Time is always critical when creating a new habit. Be sure to specify a precise period of time in which you wish to implement the new actions.

  • So “I’m going to exercise 1 hour per day” is inadequate. “I’m going to swim from 6-7 am, Monday through Friday at the YMCA” is more like it. This has enough detail to be quite clear about what you want to accomplish and includes the how, when and where.

Prepare for Interference

There are usually obstacles to creating new habits and behavioral patterns. Try to figure out these possibilities ahead of time so you can eliminate them as soon as possible.

How to achieve personal success

For example, if you’ve decided that you’re going to eat a healthy breakfast every day, get rid of all the breakfast junk food in your pantry and freezer. That junk food is an obstacle to successfully implementing your habit. The obstacle might be time interference. Maybe your partner, child or family members do not usually leave you alone for 20-40 minutes every night so you can meditate, write, read, or whatever it is you want to do towards your goal. Simply let them know ahead of time that you need be undisturbed during this time.

Look for More Supporting Habits

When you determine supporting habits that will help you reach your goal, consider going even deeper into the details to find habits that will help you accomplish your other new habits.

For example, if one of your new habits is to make it to the gym every morning by 6:30 am, you can develop several supporting habits to help you establish this habit, such as:

  • Get out of bed by 5:45 am.
  • In order to get up at 5:45 am each day, you might need an additional habit of always being in bed by 10:30 pm.
  • Another supporting habit might be to pack your gym bag the night before.

These supporting habits are extremely importance to your success. Spend some time thinking about additional habits you can develop to support your efforts.

Just as counter-productive habits can keep you from success, supportive habits can aid to your victory. So, consider the habits that will best support your goals, put them into action on a daily basis, and enjoy your new success!

If you’ve tried to reach your goals on your own in the past and fallen short, or if you’re ready to start and want to save time in reaching success, try working with a life coach. A coach will help you stay motivated, hold you accountable, and strategize ways to overcome interference so you can stay on track. Life Coach Library makes finding a coach simple. Simply register and we will match you with up to three certified coaches. It’s free and each coach will offer you a complimentary coaching consultation so that you may conveniently find the right match.

Clifford Aning

empowercoaching.us

clifford@empowercoaching.us

A Beginner’s Guide to Meditation for Wellness

Health & Wellness, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality, Recovery

If you’re anything like I was, the word meditation brings up images of yogi’s sitting in lotus position chanting “ommm”~incense burning in the background, all in a quest to enlightenment.

For me, that misconception got in the way of sincerely engaging in what has become the single most positive and life-changing habit I practice. Got in the way for years and not until I discovered meditation on You Tube did I change my stance.

What are the benefits of meditation?

For thousands of years people have meditated to gain peace of mind, clarity and focus. Today, some begin on a doctor’s recommendation, others to find relief from painful thoughts or feelings, while others simply want to find greater self-understanding. Regular meditation has proven to have profound benefits mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

Just to name a few:

  • Decreased blood pressure
  • Lower cholesterol levels
  • Decreased depression and anxiety
  • Restful sleep
  • Improved self-image and increased positive thinking
  • Longer attention span/concentration
  • Pain management

Why is meditation so powerfully effective?

Have you ever been overwhelmed and confused for a while until you just stopped to take time and think? And when you slowed down to really process you were able to see clearly, and simple solutions became obvious? Well, meditation is kinda like that ~ on steroids.

I’m not a guru or a neuroscientist, but based on my research here is a practical explanation:

When we are awake, our brains are busy. Like 40-60 thoughts per minute, busy. Only about 10% of those thoughts are conscious, while the other 90% are running in either the sub-conscious or the pre-conscious. Think of the pre-conscious as the “waiting room” between the other two. For most of us, a whopping 80% of those unconscious thoughts are negative (Psychology Today, 2012).

So, while we are having 40-60 thoughts per minute, our brainwaves are pretty rapid. These are called alpha or beta-waves. They correlate to active learning, thinking and processing information. I think of this an impenetrable and frenzied barrier that clouds any inner wisdom we may possess.

Photo by Davinder Ojaita

In meditation, the brain slows down to theta and delta waves, which is related to relaxation and heightened awareness. In short, it slows down the frenzy enough to open the door to the sub-conscious, leading to deeper self-awareness and visualization, a.k.a. inner wisdom.

In this relaxed state, we are able to uncover buried negative, fear-based, & limiting beliefs and then begin the process of weeding them out and replacing them with new, positive, and empowering ones.

Not quite feeling your inner guru? No worries!

In truth there are an infinite number of ways to meditate and none of them are wrong. The common thread amongst all meditative practice is the cultivation of awareness and expanded consciousness.

Learn to Practice Meditation

Here is a very simple process to help you get started in your practice:

Before beginning any meditation, I always set an intention. This is not a necessity to meditate, but it is what I do.

An intention is a positive thought that I hope to make a part of my unconscious schema. For example, years ago, doing deep inner-child work, I needed to release shame. I didn’t know I carried shame unconsciously because I never actively thought “I wasn’t good enough”. However, running in the background were core-beliefs that my worth was measured and valued by what I accomplished and how I looked.

So I wanted to be rid of shame, but telling myself “I don’t want to feel shame anymore” wasn’t going to cut it. It’s the right idea, but it is stated negatively. Stating a negative intention is sorta like getting into a taxi and telling the driver you don’t want to go to the train station, expecting him to know that means you want to go to the airport. Doesn’t work. Stated positively, I began to use the mantra “I AM ENOUGH” (right now).

To begin:

  • · Turn your cellphone OFF! Yes OFF, you can do it 😊 (IF you use your device for music/guided meditation, you may put it on Do Not Disturb)
  • Sit or lie comfortably. Not sure about you, but for me sitting on the floor with my legs crossed is not so comfortable after a few minutes. I prefer to lay down. Some highly recommend “grounding” by sitting or having your feet on the floor and opening your palms upward to increase “energy” flow. If you are comfortable with this, great. If not, don’t fret, it’s ok not to. The energy knows where to go and doing something that makes you feel awkward defeats the purpose of the whole experience.
  • Close your eyes and bring your awareness to your breath. Take 2–3 slow and deep breaths. In your mind, try counting to 5 as you inhale, pause for a count of 3, and slowly exhale counting back to 5.
  • Breathe normal. As you begin to relax, your breath will automatically slow down (your breath and your brain are in tandem so as one begins to slow, the other will naturally follow).
  • When your thoughts begin to scatter, (trust me they will) simply accept it. Don’t judge the fact that you are having thoughts or engage in them (this will only create angst) Just try to “notice” them like a cloud passing by in the sky and then and bring your attention back to your breathing.
  • As you breathe, notice your body from the inside. Bring attention to your feet, then to your legs, then your torso, and so on… Being aware of your body puts your awareness into the present moment.
  • Do this for about 5 minutes each day and gradually increase time.

When I began to meditate, I did the Chopra Centers 21-day Meditation Challenge, which I found on You Tube, along with thousands of guided meditations and meditation music tracks. I love, love, love using them. I find the best ones use binaural beats and do require headphones, so make sure you have a pair comfortable enough that you can forget you are wearing them. Binaural beats mean the sound in each side is traveling at a different speed. The impact of this is that when the brain processes them, it responds in slower waves that are best for expanded awareness.

Be patient, it takes 14–30 days for the unconscious to absorb new information and accept it as automatic. Meditating regularly will make happiness, gratitude, clarity, focus, and inner-peace your new normal.

By Wendy J. Cope, Positive Change Coach

References:

https://www.livescience.com/

https://faithhopeandpsychology.wordpress.com/2012/03/02/80-of-thoughts-are-negative-95-are-repetitive/

About Me:

I was a rebellious teenager and at the age of 20 found myself in a recovery program for drug and alcohol addiction. That was 30 years ago and I have been passionate about the pursuit of personal-growth ever since. At one point in my recovery I felt really “stuck” and needed to do something different. That was my first encounter with coaching. I completed a 12-week program and the changes I experienced were profound. Like more than 5 years of therapy profound.

I felt inspired to become a Positive-Change Coach and later to create a platform that serves both coaches and clients. Hence, I created Life Coach Library. Educating people and getting the message to them that they CAN reach their goals while providing a practical means for great coaches to grow their businesses is what Life Coach Library is all about. If you simply register and fill out a short questionnaire you will receive up to 3 coaching sessions on us!

Education:

I hold a bachelor’s degree from Hawaii Pacific University in Justice Administration and I’m currently pursuing a graduate degree in professional counseling from Walden University. Later in my career, I completed a career switcher program and hold a professional teacher’s license in Virginia and Delaware. Additionally, I am a certified hypnotherapist and Reiki master. I completed my coach certification at Coach Training Alliance, and I am committed to personal-growth and life-long learning.

Making Goal Oriented Choices

Career & Business, Life Coach Library

Each day is a reminder that I am one step closer to my goals. Keeping that in mind helps me to stay on track with the choices I make.

It is easy to avoid over indulgence when I know I have financial goals. I remind myself that taking care of the important things now is paramount. I choose to celebrate after completing my outlined objectives.

The relationships I form today determine the kind of future support structure I have at my disposal. I am careful with my choice of friends. I want to surround myself with friends who have goals and aspired to achieve them.

When I find myself at a crossroad, I avoid making a choice based on my emotion of the moment. I realize how easy it is to be reactive when choosing by feelings. Instead, my choices are well contemplated.

Setting goals sometimes means sacrificing my comfort for the end result. I am content with tough decisions that yield an ideal outcome.

At this point in my life, I am happy to be a sound decision maker. My commitment to thinking things through with a focus on my goals is unwavering.

I have found that taking time to self-reflect helps me to make goal oriented choices.

Self-Reflection Questions:

  1. What person(s) can I seek help from when I have a tough choice to make?
  2. How do I know when a goal I set is likely unattainable in the desired timeframe?
  3. How long would I be able to sacrifice my comfort in pursuit of goals?

Life Coaching Works!

Clifford Aning
empowercoaching.us
clifford@empowercoaching.us

REDEFINING FAILURE FOR CAREER SUCCESS

Health & Wellness, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality

Unhappy and unfulfilled in your present career and really want to pursue something completely different, but you don’t? You want to go for that promotion but find yourself stopping short of applying for it? You really want to be in a serious relationship but find yourself backing away to avoid commitment? Maybe you are thinking about being involved in a community volunteer organization but never take the first step to inquire. When your heart yearns for something new but you stop yourself short of going after it, do you ever ask yourself why?

Fear of failure is often the culprit. Fear can paralyze us from moving forward on what really matters to us. These unspoken fears may be influencing our decisions and behaviors (Berger, W 2018). Fear of failure is one of the biggest reasons people hold themselves back from pursuing opportunities. We have an endless stream of thoughts, judgments and self-criticism which stop us dead in our tracks. Voices in our heads shout: “people will think less of me, they will label me a failure, I will feel vulnerable, exposed, naked, and I can’t handle it.” You try to silence your inner critic but you can’t. I can relate. I am no stranger to fear of failure.

Very early in my healthcare career, I was invited to present a workshop for women, a very high profile opportunity. This was no ordinary workshop. It was for the new women’s pavilion, an important business unit for the health system I worked for. While my heart said, “hell, yes, you are going to do this, what a wonderful opportunity for you, you should be excited and grateful!” My mind said something very different, “are you kidding? You haven’t done workshops before, and this one is very high profile. What if you fail? Are you really willing to risk your good reputation to do this?” If I accepted this invitation, I would be stepping outside my comfort zone. It was scary and I was afraid of failing.

After talking with a psychologist friend of mine, she convinced me the workshop was something I needed to do despite my fear . . . feel the fear and do it anyway. Reluctantly, I accepted the invitation but my method for working through my fear was to strive for perfection. I became obsessed with making this workshop perfect. I took an entire year to put this one workshop together because I was so afraid it wouldn’t be good enough. You’ve heard the phrase: perfect is the enemy of good? Obviously, it was somewhat foreign to me at the time. But then, my dear friend told me something I will never forget. She said: “if only one person walks away from this workshop learning something new, something that could possibly change the direction of her life, it will all be worth it. Knowing the gifts you have to share, your presentation will be powerful. You may never know who or how many received your gifts of wisdom, but rest assured, there will be at least one, probably more and you may have changed a life forever.”

Since that time, I don’t let fear hold me hostage anymore. It still tries to air its ugly head from time to time but I now know where it is coming from and how to better deal with it. For example, when I transitioned from healthcare executive to life and leadership coach and started my own business about two years ago, I experienced some fear, fear of building a successful business and fear that my weekly blog posts on social media wouldn’t be good enough. Initially, I started obsessing again aiming for perfection. Remembering that perfect is the enemy of good and stepping outside my comfort zone brings opportunity, I got past my fear. I will not let fear hold me back from sharing my gifts especially knowing it can make a difference in other people’s lives.

In her book, “Daring Greatly,” author Brene Brown writes about how allowing yourself to be vulnerable, exposing your heart to risk and stepping into the void of ‘I don’t know if this will work’ is truly one of the most courageous things we as humans can do. (Kitto, M (2016). It takes courage to step outside our comfort zone but this is where possibility and opportunity lives. It is where we can find our dreams and aspirations.

Moving from where we are to where we want to be on our life journey, we have to confront our fears. I would like to offer my thoughts and strategies for overcoming the fear that is paralyzing us.

First, recognize that fear is self-created. We frighten ourselves by fantasizing negative outcomes to anything we might pursue. We may be ruminating over past experiences that did not go well or worrying about a future that may never happen. You may have heard of the acronym, “F-E-A-R: Fantasized Experiences Appearing Real.” Rather than living in the present moment, our minds take us to the past or to the perceived future where we then formulate what our outcome will be. It feels real and scary but it is related to our thoughts. Science tells us that approximately 80% of the 40,000 to 50,000 thoughts we have daily are negative. It’s important
to focus on the present moment because, if you think about it, the present moment is all we really have. The past is history and the future is unknown. We fear things that may never happen.

Redefine Failure. A good place to start is to define “failure.” We get to define what failure is and what we want to label as a failure. This failure we are all so afraid of is actually a choice. We get to make the choice. Whatever we are pursuing in life, whether it is business, a new career, relationships, or whatever, there will be times when things do not work out as planned. Failure is just feedback showing us what’s not working so we can find out what will work. Learning from our mistakes is invaluable in life. Anyone who has achieved great things, anyone who has changed the world has, at some point, made a choice to embrace and redefine failure rather than let it hold them back.

Ask yourself, “what’s worth doing EVEN IF I fail? Maybe my new business has a very slow start as defined by modern standards. Is it a failure then? What if I am making a difference for others, helping improve lives? I may need to course correct some things in my business (failure redefined as feedback) but there is already value in the services I’m providing.

Create a “fear list.” In her article, “How to Overcome Your Fear of Failure,” author Susan Peppercorn suggests creating a checklist of what you are afraid to do and what you fear will happen if you do it. Write down the benefits of the attempted effort and also the cost of doing nothing. Walking away from an opportunity may be far more harmful than stepping outside your comfort zone to pursue it.

Another strategy to consider is to restate your list of what you are afraid of. For example, if you are afraid of leaving a job you hate, you could restate it as, “I want to leave this job I hate to pursue my dream, and I scare myself by imagining I would go bankrupt and lose my house.” You can see how YOU are the one creating the fear here. (Canfield, J 2015) Once again, you are focused on a future outcome that may never happen.

Focus on the positive energy of the desired outcome. Author, Warren Berger, in his article, “What Are You So Afraid of?” suggests focusing on the desired outcome and the energy surrounding that rather than the actual thing that is inducing the fear. That outcome may be a personal benefit or involve having a positive impact on others. (Berger, W. 2018). In my previous example, despite an initial slow start to my business, I knew I was making a profound difference with the individuals I coach and those who read my weekly blogs.

Recall when you triumphed in the face of fear. Try to recall a time when you were successful at a new endeavor despite your fear of failure. Perhaps you are going for an exciting job promotion but nervous about the interview. Think about all the times you “aced” an interview, despite your fears, and were thrilled to get the job. What did you do, how did you prepare, what feedback did you get? Focus on what you did well.

Hire a professional coach. Despite all your efforts, there may be times when you just can’t get past your fears. You may have a limiting belief that you are unaware of. You feel that you are not enough: not smart enough, not good enough, too old, too young, whatever. Because of your fear, you remain stuck, and are reluctant to pursue almost anything new. A professional coach can help you discover what you cannot see for yourself. She can support you through your fears, keep you focused and help you confront your unconscious behaviors and old patterns. A coach helps you move forward with your life, helps you discover the possibilities, address obstacles and overcome barriers to achieving success.

Don’t give up on your dreams and aspirations. Don’t let fear paralyze you from moving forward with your life. Consider trying one of the strategies I’ve outlined above to move beyond your self-created fears. In the event you still cannot get past your fears, consider reaching out to a professional coach.

Want to move beyond what is holding you back from your success in your career and life? Book a call with me where I offer a one hour confidential and complimentary Discovery/Mini-Coaching session so you can experience what coaching can provide for you. http://www.robbiekcarlson.com/coaching/

References:
Berger, W. (2018). “What Are You So Afraid Of?”
Kitto, M. (2016). “What would you do if you knew you could not fail?”
Peppercorn, S (2018) “How to Overcome Your Fear of Failure?”
Canfield, J (2015) “The Success Principles”

Overcoming Stumbling Blocks to Goal Achievement: It’s an Inside Job

Career & Business, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality

It’s the New Year, a time for new beginnings, a fresh start. Inspiring, right?

Then why do I feel defeated already?

Looking back on the past year, I wanted change, I wanted results, I had the best intentions, but everything remained pretty much the same. I’m still in the same dead end job, I’ve actually gained rather than lost weight, I abandoned my exercise routine a month after it started and I’m still a stranger to my friends and family because I do nothing but work. Why would I think anything would be different this year?

Maybe, intellectually, you understand the importance of how to approach the goal setting process but that nasty little voice in your head tells you that you are a loser, a failure, and you can’t achieve anything. While you could be struggling with the obvious, goals lack specificity (specific, measureable, achievable, relevant, time-bound, “SMART” goal method), no real commitment, inactivity, or too many goals, I suspect it could be you are dealing with an underlying belief. Like many, it is not something you can see for yourself. Being the responsible person you are, you probably tried to figure it out but became stuck, frustrated and defeated. Let’s take a look at this challenging issue and how you can get past it.

To bring about something new on the outside, like a new outcome, often requires something new on the inside, a change in attitude, paradigm or underlying belief. An underlying belief is like the pesky weed which, until pulled out from its root, continues to air its ugly head. Our weed is our limiting belief: we believe we are someone we are not, not good enough, not smart enough, too young/too old or some such disempowering label of not being enough. Until that limiting belief is discovered and removed, we may be held back from achieving our goals. For example, we may neglect to go after a job we really want because we
think we’re not smart enough to handle it so we stay stuck in a dead-end job. No matter how many may tell you how smart you are, if you have the underlying belief that you are not smart enough, it doesn’t matter what people say. You won’t believe them and it will hold you back. This limiting belief may have started years ago when you had a defining encounter, maybe failed a class, were denied application to a college, or given multiple disengaging messages from your parents. You continue to add to your disempowering story and reinforce your limiting belief whenever you encounter things you don’t understand. It completely paralyzes you from moving forward.

Another significant stumbling block for many is fear, fear of failure or even, fear of success. Some people are afraid they will fail, but even worse, that they may actually succeed and, as a result, they never take the first step toward achieving their goals. They lack belief in themselves and in their potential. If they fail, they anticipate people labeling them a failure, a loser. If they succeed, they think people may be envious and treat them differently, perhaps negatively. (Vermeeren, D 2018) They may even believe they’re unworthy of attaining the goal and, as such, sabotage themselves. I like the acronym, F E A R, Fictitious Events Appearing Real. We worry about things that may never happen and, in the process, make ourselves miserable, stuck and defeated. Believing in yourself is a choice and an attitude you develop over time. We need to take charge of our own self-concept and beliefs. Unfortunately, this is where many get stuck. Doing the internal work to ensure success is critical. It may actually take the support of a professional to help you move forward. A professional life coach is highly trained in helping clients see what they cannot see for themselves. They help clients discover and remove the limiting beliefs that hold them back from achieving their goals. They also act as a catalyst for change helping clients achieve their goals faster than they can do on their own. If you just can’t figure out where to start, consider working with a professional coach who is well trained in helping clients identify their stumbling blocks to success. A coach helps you see things you cannot see for yourself, uncovers and removes limiting beliefs that may be holding you back, and helps you become your personal and professional best. The coach-client relationship is highly confidential, tremendously supportive, totally focused on the client’s needs and all done in a convenient setting, usually by phone.

Do not give up on your goals, dreams and aspirations. When stuck, don’t beat yourself up and give yourself all kinds of disempowering messages. Silence those nasty voices in your head that have you defeated before you even start. Commit to making 2019 YOUR BEST YEAR YET!! A Professional Life Coach can make the difference for you. To experience how inspiring, supportive and helpful a life coach can be for you, consider booking a complimentary and confidential Discovery Session:
https://app.acuityscheduling.com/schedule.php?owner=16511562

When working with a Life Coach, you will be absolutely amazed at what you will be able to accomplish when all roadblocks to success are removed, you are empowered and energized, successfully achieving all your goals, living the life of your dreams and, in the process, becoming your personal and professional best.

Happy New Year!
Robbie K Carlson
Life & Leadership Coach
Reference:
Vermeeren, D. (2018) “Why People Fail To Achieve Their Goals”

How to Obliterate Limiting Beliefs and Open Your Life up to New Possibilities

Career & Business, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality

Your limiting beliefs aren’t doing you any good. In fact, they’re keeping you from living your best life. Learn how to get rid of them! 

Our beliefs define who we are. For better or for worse, what we believe dictates our behavior, thoughts, and reactions.  

If the belief is strong enough, it can carve out our entire destiny. Limiting beliefs included! 

Our beliefs serve many purposes. They keep us safe, reflect our self-esteem, and maintain our social status. To step outside these beliefs means we risk rejection and loss. Believing we will lose something if we strive to meet a goal makes us fearful and avoidant. 

Beliefs are also kept intact because of a psychological concept is known as belief perseverance. In belief perseverance, our brains persist in weeding out evidence that contradicts our belief. Our brains focus on reinforcing memories, thoughts, and actions related to the belief while leaving out evidence to the contrary. 

Giving up a self-limiting belief isn’t easy. The unknown and the fear of being wrong is scary. These beliefs are familiar to us even when they are unhealthy or self-defeating. 

But, there is a way to obliterate self-limiting beliefs once and for all!  

If you want to live your best life and let go of limiting beliefs, then read on to discover how to let them go. 

Finding Freedom by Obliterating Limiting Beliefs 

Beliefs provide us with a sense of certainty. We all need certainty, but we also need to progress and grow in life. Explore the following ways to let go of self-limiting beliefs so you can open your life up to new possibilities.  

1. Truth and Reality 

The truth can be translated in a variety of ways. As we switch from one news channel to another, we know this to be true! One news channel focuses on one aspect of a story making it positive or neutral and the other focuses on another part of the story to make it seem negative.  

Which news channel is “right”? It depends on who you believe and what you believe already! 

To open ourselves up to other beliefs, we need to lovingly turn our attention inward. We need to gently ask ourselves questions about our limiting beliefs.  

Author Byron Katie created a method for questioning strongly held beliefs and judgments in order to accept reality. She calls it “The Work” which includes “The Four Questions.” 

These questions are: 

1. Is it true? 

2. Can you absolutely know it’s true? 

3. How do you react, what happens, when you believe that thought? 

4. Who would you be without the thought? 

The key message to Byron Katie’s questions is that we can never know for sure if one belief is absolutely true. We may believe it to be true, but that doesn’t mean it’s actually true.  

You discover this by turning around the initial statement you made using opposite statements. These statements could be about yourself, another person, or the world. When you turn around these statements, you’ll discover that they are just as truthful as your initial statement.  

We discover holes in our beliefs when we consider that other truths may be just as true, if not truer than, our original belief or judgment. When we accept that many “truths” can exist at once, we open up our minds to believe in other possibilities and discoveries.  

2. Change Your Story 

Beliefs are usually a part of a story we tell ourselves. In the case of self-limiting beliefs, these stories provide us with a detailed explanation as to why we can’t do something. 

For example, imagine a young man who believes he can’t go to college. His story says that he can’t go to college because his family can’t afford it, no one in his family went to college, and his grade average isn’t good enough. 

Imagine another young man with the exact same background who believes he must go to college because of his upbringing. What’s the difference? One used his background to form a self-limiting belief whereas the other created a story to use as fuel to overcome his struggles.  

Ask yourself how you can use the past to create a motivational story. How can your story be changed from limitation to overcoming obstacles? Has someone with the same background as you created a different ending to their story? 

Find a spark of inspiration such as another person’s story and never look back! If they believed it, so can you! 

3. Build on Success 

We normally aren’t composed of only self-limiting beliefs. We also have beliefs which have served us well! We can use these existing beliefs to give us the confidence to overcome self-limiting beliefs.  

Take out a pen and paper and write down all the times you’ve succeeded in life.  

Did you graduate from high school? Do you have a job? Are your relationships successful? 

What strength and beliefs would someone need to accomplish these tasks?  

For example, to get a job, you would have to be brave enough to apply and be qualified in some way to do the job. To graduate from high school, you would have to be persistent in getting your work done and intelligent enough to pass exams. 

Make a list of skills and beliefs needed for each accomplishment. Then return to your self-limiting beliefs. 

Have you used skills in the past that contradict your self-limiting belief? Do these skills directly contradict your limiting belief? 

For example, imagine your self-limiting belief is that you can’t lose weight because you’re not disciplined enough. Define what “being disciplined enough” looks, then turn to your list of accomplishments. 

If it’s true that you aren’t disciplined enough, then how did you graduate from high school? Going to high school means getting up early and getting homework done for four years. Would you agree that that takes discipline even if you didn’t see it as a discipline at the time? 

Perhaps the biggest problem is that your discipline “muscle” is just out of practice! Does that mean you can’t lose weight? No, it means you’re going to have to re-learn how to be disciplined so you can lose weight.  

Your belief that you can’t lose weight isn’t true, you just are out of practice in believing in yourself and following a plan.  

4. Avoid Comparisons 

When you think about your accomplishments, try not to compare yourself to others. When we compare ourselves to our peers we can instantly believe we can’t do something. The reasoning goes, “if I could, I already would have been successful like them.” 

Life, however, is not linear. The people you are comparing yourself to also may not be as successful and happy as they appear. And if they truly are, then ask them what their recipe for success is! 

We can all use someone to look up to. If they did it, then so can you! 

Obliterating Limiting Beliefs, Gaining Back Your Life 

To obliterate limiting beliefs, we must nurture our strengths. We have to feed the good in ourselves by shifting our focus and changing our stories. 

We can do this on a daily basis. We can set small, manageable goals for ourselves. We can allow the truth to overpower our beliefs by being open to other interpretations.  

It takes courage. It takes persistence. But, you made it this far in life, and that isn’t by accident.  

You made it this far in life because something inside of you believed you could. Build on that belief and you’ll open yourself up to a whole new reality. One where you believe in yourself more than you believe in your fears.  

Feel like you need a life coach to help you overcome your limiting beliefs? Find a life coach today and open your life up to endless possibilities! 

Author | WENDY COPE 

About: 

I was a rebellious teenager and at the age of 20 found myself in a recovery program for drug and alcohol addiction. That was 30 years ago and I have been passionate about the pursuit of personal-growth ever since. At one point in my recovery, I felt really “stuck” and need to do something different. That was my first encounter with coaching. I completed a 12-week program and the changes I experienced were profound. Like more than 5 years of therapy profound. 

That triggered a deep passion and desire to help others. Anyone can get “stuck” at some time in their lives. I work with people of all walk of life although my area of expertise is the recovery community. Helping people get “un-stuck” brings me deep satisfaction. I felt inspired to create a platform that serves both coaches and clients and that’s how Life Coach Library evolved. Educating people and getting the message to them that they CAN reach their goals while providing a practical means for great coaches to grow their business is what Life Coach Library is all about. 
 

Education: 

I hold a bachelor’s degree from Hawaii Pacific University in Justice Administration and have 25 graduate level credits in professional counseling from Walden University. Later in my career, I completed a career switcher program and hold a professional teacher’s license in Virginia, Delaware, and Maryland. Additionally, I am a certified hypnotherapist and reiki master. I am presently training with the Coach Training Alliance and while I will complete this module in February 2019, I am committed to personal-growth and life-long learning in the coaching profession. 

How to Unlock Your Passion and Find Your Life Purpose: It’s Never Too Late!

Career & Business, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality

Are you wandering around life without knowing your life purpose? That’s not truly living. Learn how to unlock your passion in this guide. 

You may be content with your life, but are you happy? 

According to the most recent findings from the Harris Poll Survey of American Happiness, the answer is most likely no. Only 33% of survey respondents reported feeling happiness. 

One of the biggest reasons why people feel unhappy is because of a lack of direction. They feel that their life has little purpose, and thus, no aim. 

While that may sound rather dour, not all hope is lost. It’s never too late to find your purpose! 

Read on below for a guide on how you can unlock your passion, reach your potential, and find your life purpose. 

Appreciate the Value of Childhood 

As we grow up, we’re told to put childish things away and grow up. To conform to society and everything we believe we’re supposed to be. 

In fact, the very idea comes about in the Bible

But what does it mean to be “childish?” Is it such a bad thing? 

It’s quite the opposite. 

Think back to when you were a child. Chances are you were quite happy most of the time. You most likely felt loved and safe and secure, living each day with a new sense of wonder. 

But as we grow up, many of us lose that sense of wonder. 

It’s a shame. Our childhood selves have so much to teach us, from exercising unbridled passion and unconditional love to the curiosity we found in even the simplest aspects of life. 

It’s time to stop quelling your inner child and get in touch with them once more. 

Start viewing life through a new lens, where creativity and curiosity rule. Let yourself be happy and the rest will flow. 

Ask the Tough Questions 

Imagine a world where you have access to anything you could ever want. Money isn’t a concern, so instead of slaving away at your 9-to-5 job, you’re off living your best life. 

What does that look like for you? What is it that you really want out of life? 

For many of us, that question is so unfathomable we may not be able to come up with an answer right away! 

If you can’t come up with anything right away, that’s alright. Give the idea space to grow. 

Congratulations, you’ve just answered one of life’s toughest questions, and as a result, you now understand your purpose and passion in life. 

Visualization may not seem like it has much power over our lives, but doctors and social scientists are discovering that visualizing success is highly influential over our decision making. 

From ‘Why?’ to ‘Why Not?’: Living a Life of Purpose 

The biggest thing holding you back from a life of purpose isn’t money. It isn’t your job. Nor is it your looks. 

It is, however, your attitude and your approach to life. It’s time to reframe your thinking into something more positive. 

For a great example of what living a ‘Why not?’ lifestyle looks like, let’s look at an unexpected source: Filmmaker, podcaster, and entrepreneur Kevin Smith. 

By all accounts, Smith could have ended up as another statistic. 

By the time his first film, “Clerks,” made the rounds at film festivals, young Smith was a film school dropout living with his parents and working a dead-end job at a convenience store to pay off his massive credit card debt. 

And then something astonishing happened. Critics and audiences loved the candid nature of “Clerks.” So much so that the distribution rights were purchased on the spot, launching Smith’s career. 

It’s because he followed his passion that he found his success. 

Years later, Smith would go on to write, “…there is little sense in not at least trying to accomplish all of your wildest dreams in life. 

Now he travels the world telling his stories and working with his friends — all because he said ‘Why not?’ to shooting a small film at the very convenience store he worked at. 

But you don’t need an award from the Cannes Film Festival to live your dream. A life of purpose is following your passion, even in the face of adversity. 

You owe it to yourself to try and follow your passion. 

Life Is Tough — Be Tougher 

You might wonder why, if a life of passion is easy to lead, more people aren’t out there living their dream. 

It boils down to an answer that tends to scare most people: Work. 

Indeed, to be happy and successful requires more — more than many expect. 

Success doesn’t happen overnight, nor does it happen in a bubble. It requires long hours, sacrifice, and above all else, drive. 

And as a result, you’ll need to be patient with yourself along the way. 

There will be days where following your dreams may seem pointless if not outright impossible. Don’t let that negativity overcome you. 

Persistence is key, even when it comes to something like unlocking your dreams. 

Be tougher than those negative thoughts telling insisting you can’t do it. Push through and do it anyway. Soon you’ll be so happy you did. 

Ask for Help 

Too many people view asking for help as a sign of weakness. 

They believe that, because they need some assistance, they’re incapable of accomplishing their dreams on their own. 

The truth, however, is that it takes a great deal of strength to ask for help. 

If you can’t seem to unlock your dreams or find your passion, there’s no harm in reaching out. 

Consider finding a life coach in your area who can offer one-on-one coaching and personalized advice. 

Finding Your Life Purpose: Final Thoughts 

Finding your life purpose is something anyone can do at any point in their life. The trick is to want it. 

If you have the desire, drive, and passion, you too can achieve your dreams. 

If you need a little help getting there, don’t forget that we can put you in touch with a life coach. 

Contact us today to learn more about finding a life coach who can help you unlock your full potential. 

Author | WENDY COPE 

About: 

I was a rebellious teenager and at the age of 20 found myself in a recovery program for drug and alcohol addiction. That was 30 years ago and I have been passionate about the pursuit of personal-growth ever since. At one point in my recovery, I felt really “stuck” and need to do something different. That was my first encounter with coaching. I completed a 12-week program and the changes I experienced were profound. Like more than 5 years of therapy profound. 

That triggered a deep passion and desire to help others. Anyone can get “stuck” at some time in their lives. I work with people of all walk of life although my area of expertise is the recovery community. Helping people get “un-stuck” brings me deep satisfaction. I felt inspired to create a platform that serves both coaches and clients and that’s how Life Coach Library evolved. Educating people and getting the message to them that they CAN reach their goals while providing a practical means for great coaches to grow their business is what Life Coach Library is all about. 
 

Education: 

I hold a bachelor’s degree from Hawaii Pacific University in Justice Administration and have 25 graduate level credits in professional counseling from Walden University. Later in my career, I completed a career switcher program and hold a professional teacher’s license in Virginia, Delaware, and Maryland. Additionally, I am a certified hypnotherapist and reiki master. I am presently training with the Coach Training Alliance and while I will complete this module in February 2019, I am committed to personal-growth and life-long learning in the coaching profession.

Live Your Next Level Life: How You Can Leap to the Next Level with a Life Coach’s Help

Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality

Are you feeling like there has to be more to life? Or you have to be able to do more? Learn how to get that next level life in this post. 

Do you feel like your life is a bit stagnant at the moment? 

Would you like to be able to both recognize and take advantage of the opportunities life has to offer you?  

Sometimes, do you just feel like you need a little bit of a push?  

If you answered any of these questions with a “yes,” then life coaching may help you to get to the next level in your life.  

What’s your life like? If you’re like 70% of people, you might not be fully content with where you are at the moment. Ready to live your next level life with the guidance, encouragement, and honesty that a life coach can provide you with? 

If so, then keep on reading this post to learn more about how a life coach can help your life be as awesome as you’ve always wanted.  

Life Coaching Increases Accountability 

Sure, you’re accountable to your boss, your landlord, and maybe even to a few of your family members and friends.  

But in most cases, these people hold you accountable for the things you’re supposed to do for them. The real question is: Who in your life is holding you accountable for bettering yourself and achieving your dreams?  

If you work with a life coach, you’ll have someone that you have to report to — and get feedback from — when it comes to moving forward in your life. 

You’ll be able to make fewer excuses. You’ll also develop a real-life, actionable plan to make your goals a reality. Above all, you’ll learn the most efficient and even emotionally healthy ways to get what you want.  

You’ll Develop an Actionable Plan 

If you want to live your next level life, then you need to find a way to turn your dreams into reality.  

Sure, being a dreamer is wonderful. It’s one of the ways that we as people can remain optimistic, even in tough times. But eventually, you have to stop dreaming and work to make things happen.  

You can’t just “wait” for good luck and opportunities to come to you. When you choose to work with a life coach, you’ll learn how to find them for yourself.  

You and your coach will create an achievable, step-by-step action plan for turning your life around. You’ll research education programs together, look for new employment opportunities, and even talk about your dating life.  

In short? 

Whatever you want to improve in your life, you’ll need a map to get there. A life coach helps you to draw that map. Most importantly, they can also prepare you for the obstacles and setbacks that you’ll likely face along the way.  

You’ll Address Your Anxieties 

Think about the top things that you feel like hold you back in life. In other words, what’s preventing you from living your next level life?  

Is it the opinions of others? Is it your current living and financial situation? Is it the professional qualifications you possess, your work environment, or even your current mental health?  

Now, think about how much more you would be able to accomplish if these stressors and anxieties were absent from your life. Think about how much happier you’d be. In some cases, this might mean you have more time to spend on things you actually enjoy doing.  

Your life could change for the better. You just have to take that first step. 

What if you could develop real-world coping mechanisms? What if you could figure out which of these stressors you’re in control of, and which ones are worth changing?  

Life coaching helps you to do just that.  

In addition to identifying — and discussing the reasons for — some of your biggest fears, you’ll also learn how to better manage them.  

You’ll be surprised at what you can accomplish when you’re not standing in your own way.  

You’ll Develop Self-Confidence 

An astounding 85% of people currently struggle with low self-confidence.  

If you’re among them, then you know firsthand just how much your lack of an ability to believe in yourself can get in your way.  

Maybe you have amazing ideas that would improve the lives of others, but feel like you’re not “qualified” enough to share them. Maybe you have imposter syndrome and feel like you’re not “worthy” of the life you’ve been given.  

Perhaps you just live in constant fear of rejection. You feel like it’s just easier to avoid seeking new opportunities, because that way, you’ll be able to avoid feelings of failure.  

The truth is that a lack of self-confidence doesn’t just hurt you. It also deprives the people around you of wonderful, helpful ideas that could also make their lives easier and happier.  

Working with a life coach is an awesome way for you to remind yourself of what you’re capable of. You’ll recognize your talents, learn to advocate for yourself, and finally start taking risks again.  

Are You Ready to Live Your Next Level Life? 

We hope that this post has shown you how you can make your dream next level life a reality through life coaching.  

Whether you want to advance personally, professionally, or even physically, having someone to help encourage and support you can make all the difference.  

Are ready to connect with a life coach who will inspire you to grow — and to dream even bigger?  

If so, then learn more about the extraordinary life coaches we can connect you with. Don’t waste one more day not reaching your full potential. Instead, reach out to us to find a coach and level up in life. 

Author | WENDY COPE 

About: 

I was a rebellious teenager and at the age of 20 found myself in a recovery program for drug and alcohol addiction. That was 30 years ago and I have been passionate about the pursuit of personal-growth ever since. At one point in my recovery, I felt really “stuck” and need to do something different. That was my first encounter with coaching. I completed a 12-week program and the changes I experienced were profound. Like more than 5 years of therapy profound. 

That triggered a deep passion and desire to help others. Anyone can get “stuck” at some time in their lives. I work with people of all walk of life although my area of expertise is the recovery community. Helping people get “un-stuck” brings me deep satisfaction. I felt inspired to create a platform that serves both coaches and clients and that’s how Life Coach Library evolved. Educating people and getting the message to them that they CAN reach their goals while providing a practical means for great coaches to grow their business is what Life Coach Library is all about. 
 

Education: 

I hold a bachelor’s degree from Hawaii Pacific University in Justice Administration and have 25 graduate level credits in professional counseling from Walden University. Later in my career, I completed a career switcher program and hold a professional teacher’s license in Virginia, Delaware, and Maryland. Additionally, I am a certified hypnotherapist and reiki master. I am presently training with the Coach Training Alliance and while I will complete this module in February 2019, I am committed to personal-growth and life-long learning in the coaching profession.

What’s at Stake?

Health & Wellness, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality

Intuitively, many of us know the changes (or at least some of them), that we must make in order to get to where we want to be. Yet despite this, we still struggle to make those changes. We get caught up in the other matters of our lives. we lose sight of our goals, dreams, and aspirations. we get caught up in the machinations of our daily lives and inevitably stop pursuing them entirely.

So what gives? For starters, we need to make an obvious observation. Change can be uncomfortable. It usually is, particularly if it is a transformative change (Changing a habit for example). YET THESE ARE ALWAYS THE BEST CHANGES TO MAKE and still, we don’t make them.

Let’s make this real for you.

Let’s get in touch with YOUR reality:

What’s at Stake for you? If you don’t make this change, if you don’t take action, What’s at Stake for you? Let’s take into consideration both extrinsic and intrinsic consequences of not making that change.

Extrinsic: Is it a life half-lived? A horrible career or vocation? Is it a broken friendship/relationship or marriage? Is it poor physical or mental health? A potentially bad financial situation? A once in a lifetime opportunity missed out on?

Intrinsic: How do I feel about this now? How am I going to feel about this later? What Value does this have for me?

Hypothetically Speaking, if you were to continue down this path on Auto Pilot, changing absolutely nothing, what would your life look like:

  • Next Year
  • Three Years From Now
  • Five Years From Now

Are you happy with this? Are you being true to the God-given talents and gifts that were bestowed to you?

Before I became a Life Coach, I was a personal trainer for over 7 years. Exercise, particularly martial arts, changed my life profoundly. However, I never quite got to the level that I really wanted to be with my body. I kept trying to “work harder.” At one point I had a routine where I would workout at least 2 hours a day, 5 days a week doing high intensity interval training combined with Kung-Fu AND Kickboxing. I was exhausted on those days. My body would feel destroyed. I was overtraining, Working way too hard. Trying to lose weight I would “eat less” but “more often”, and then I would have “cheat meals” on the weekend. I never got to my ideal weight or had the body I wanted to. Yet I was exhausted. I kept depriving myself so much that on the weekend I would PIG OUT and ruin all that hard work from the entire week. I stayed in that cycle for about 3 years, always trying the same thing. I had more up and downs than I can count.

During this time, I was also trying to grow my coaching practice. The beautiful thing about coaching is that it requires ongoing personal growth. I decided to prioritize growing my coaching practice, so I had to put aside doing 2-3 hours of exercise every day for a while. But I knew that something had to change, otherwise I would just keep gaining weight or at best, stay the same. I changed my nutrition. I updated my system. I tried the Ketogenic Diet. In one month, I lost almost 20 pounds and I was working out half the amount of time, all while eating foods that I loved but was scared to eat: Bacon, Cheese, sour cream, etc. (in a varied plan with eggs, greens, and other lean meats and fish like chicken and salmon). Later, I transitioned to a cyclical version of this lifestyle (5 days on/two days off) and I have kept the weight off. More than just that: I don’t have high and low energy spikes anymore. I have more energy every moment of every day, I don’t get tired in the afternoon, and I never feel that starving feeling if I didn’t eat for a couple hours.

Here’s some great information on this Lifestyle: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/ketogenic-diet-101

This is the part that really will rock your world!

I invite you to take the time to slow down and just think, write it down, journal it, whatever it takes to make it real. Ask yourself just this one question: If I don’t make this change, what is truly at stake?

…But wait Mauro!!! I already made this change and I am still not where I want to be.

Know this: If you have made the change, if you have been pursuing this path that you have set out for yourself, expect that there will be ups and downs. You may experience periods of tremendous growth and then suddenly, a hit a plateau, maybe even a sudden drop. There may be yet another rise and then another drop. That’s part of the journey. That’s what makes it exciting because it is in some ways the unknown. The unknown can be scary, or it can be thrilling. The best part of all of this is YOU get to choose what label you place on that. You get to choose whether it is fear or excitement. Every day brings forth a new opportunity for growth and change.

So here are some more powerful questions to ask yourself:

  • What systems and practices can you implement that will take you to the next level in your plan?
  • What do you need to do?
  • Who do you need to be?
  • Where can you find support and from whom?
  • Is the change you need to make deeper than this? Do you need to change so that you can change?

as defined by Merriam Webster, change in perhaps its purest and simplest sense is “to make different in some particular way.” The change you may need to make may or may not even have any physical manifestation in the onset but inevitably, it always will at some point.

“Being Defeated is often a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.” -Marilyn vos Savant Blessings, Mauro Schiavo

Helpful Resources:

An Evening with Robert Kegan and Immunity to Change: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFYnVmGu9ZI

How to Overcome Procrastination | Brian Tracy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UPcLkAqS_GE&t=123s

“Drive” by Daniel Pink “Time Warrior” by Steven Chandler

Bio:

Mauro Schiavo is a Certified Life and Career/Vocation Coach, and founder of Mauro’s Max Lifestyle He seeks to bring people’s wildest dreams into reality. As a child he was obese and often felt like an outcast. In his teenage years he made a bold decision to change his life. he trained for 9 years and obtained his black belt in Kung-Fu and Kickboxing. After graduating from Florida International University with his bachelors in Sports and Fitness Studies he became a personal trainer and started his own mobile personal training business. throughout this time, he was coached, not just in martial arts, but in every area of his life. This led to an insight much later during his own certification course in coaching from Fowler International Academy of Professional Coaching. This changed his life immensely and he decided to bring that change to the rest of the world.

By Mauro Schiavo https://www.maurosmaxlifestyle.com/

Is it Time to Transform Your Career?

Career & Business, Life Coach Library

Stuck, frustrated, and unfulfilled with your career? Pay attention to the signs. It might be time to transform your career. I’ve been there and transforming my career was the best thing I could have done. Make no mistake. Transforming a career is not an overnight job. It takes courage,
perseverance and hard work but it can be life changing.

Healthcare administration had been my career for 25+ years. The majority of those years, I worked closely with physicians and their teams in the ambulatory setting. I was challenged, happy and fulfilled, and I knew I was making a difference. I experienced, first hand, the care and concern shown to patients by the healthcare team. I felt a deep responsibility to the healthcare providers to make sure they were well supported, their issues addressed, and they had the proper resources. About two years ago, I decided it was time to make a change. With the direction my organization was taking, I knew it was time to move on with my career. When I no longer felt as though I was making a difference, and no longer fulfilled, I recognized it was time to make a change.

As I pondered what was next for me, I took a long, hard look at what would need to change with my career. I wanted to build on all the experiences I had while in healthcare. As I looked back at the times I was most fulfilled in my career, it was when I was coaching and mentoring leaders and those aspiring to leadership positions. Nothing was more satisfying than seeing my direct reports advancing their careers. I had an amazing career and was very fortunate to be able to advance to higher levels of responsibility, eventually, achieving a Vice President position. It didn’t take long for me to realize that I would be most fulfilled helping others achieve the same level of success as I did. It was at that point that I made the decision to transform my career from Healthcare Administrator to becoming a professional Life and Leadership Coach. I pursued a second coach training program, became certified and started my own business.

Transitioning from healthcare administrator to being a full-time life and leadership coach required a lot of planning, a significant investment in resources and time, overcoming a few challenges, perseverance and hard work. Making the decision to leave my long-term and familiar healthcare career was not a quick decision or a fast move. My survival mechanism (also known as “ego”), who tries to protect and keep me safe within my comfort zone said, “all you’ve ever really known is how to be a healthcare administrator. Do you really think you will be able support yourself as a coach?” I suspect you know what I am talking about, those nasty little
annoying voices in your head that make you question yourself.

Then, there was the upfront expense. As many of you know, pursuing an advanced education program and starting up a new business is really expensive. I questioned whether I would really see a return on my investment. What I knew for sure, though, was the payback for my
investment was the impact I would make with the clients I supported. Being a professional life and leadership coach is my calling, my higher level purpose, the difference I want to make in the world.

I have an amazing life and an amazing career. I am happy, fulfilled and totally blessed. It is incredibly important to me to make this happen for others. I’d like to share with you my lessons learned so if you are considering transforming your career, you can do so effectively. Author Camilla Sacre-Dallerup in her book, “Reinvent Me,” suggests a few key steps:

 Start with taking a very close look at your current career. What needs to change? What do you need to learn from the situation you are in now? Be honest with yourself. Remember, if we keep doing the same thing, we will get the same result. Recognizing what needs to change may be the most challenging step on your transformation journey. To help you with this first step, consider answering the following questions:

  • What would I like to reinvent about my career?
  • How is it going to make me feel once I have done it?
  • If money was not an issue, would my answer to the first question be the same or different? If different, how?
  • How will this new career bring me the fulfillment I am looking for?

Don’t get stuck on what you may perceive as barriers to your success. I’m too old to start a new career. I’ve always been in this field, how could I possibly be successful in a new one? I’m afraid of failing. Simply silence your survival mechanism and know you were meant for so much more. If you are burned out, frustrated and unfulfilled in your current role, recognize these are signs that it is time to transform your career. You know, deep within you, that you can make a difference in the world with your gifts and talents so make the effort to take the necessary steps now.

Put your goals in writing, your unwavering commitment to a better work life. It’s your plan to get from where you are to where you want to be with your career. Break down the goals into achievable parts, action steps, and milestones. Plan for the transformation from a financial perspective. It may take some time before you can actually leave one job to start another but it is definitely possible with proper planning. Sometimes a total career transformation can seem overwhelming. Remember all the times in the past when you’ve accomplished the goals you’ve set for yourself. You can apply this same inner confidence now.

Bring your new career to life. There are many techniques you can use to keep your vision and commitment alive. One particularly effective and beautiful technique I’ve used is a meditation exercise called, “Planting the seeds in the garden of opportunity,” adopted from the book, “Reinvent Me” by author Camilla Sacre-Dallerup. So, are you ready to plant your seed, your goal, in the garden of opportunity and watch it blossom? Put on your gardening gloves and take a walk with me.

  • Find a quiet spot, free from distractions.
  • Sit or lie down somewhere comfortable.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Bring your awareness to your breath.
  • Start counting as you breathe in 1, out 2, in 3 and out 4 and so on until you reach 20. Repeat this a few times until you start to feel very relaxed.
  • Now imagine that you are walking into the most beautiful garden you have ever seen. Notice all the trees, the flowers and any other surroundings. This is your garden of opportunity.
  • As you look around the garden and all its beauty, you start to realize it’s all created simply by the seeds that were planted and then nurtured. Consider for a moment that when we plant a seed in the garden, we don’t stand over it and say ‘Grow, grow, hurry up.’ No, we plant it and walk away knowing that it will grow with water, sun and air.
  • Imagine now if your goal can do the same. See yourself holding a seed in your hand that represents your goal/your dream career. Now plant it somewhere in the garden.
  • After you have planted it, sit for a minute and imagine this seed growing and blooming and turning into an amazing flower or tree, just like your goal/your dream career, blossoming and happening.
  • Imagine yourself taking action steps toward making it happen. Notice what it feels like, sounds like and looks like as you imagine doing some of these things.
  • Finally, imagine what it will feel like once you have totally transformed your career. How do you feel? Are you happy, excited, fulfilled? Just notice what you notice without judgement, and then go ahead and open your eyes knowing that you have successfully planted your seed in the garden of opportunity.

Take action. Don’t wait for life to happen to make the changes you know you want to make. Listen to your intuition that has been telling you it’s time to transform your career. Using the meditation example, ‘taking steps of action is like planting lots of seeds. Eventually you will
have a beautiful garden filled with opportunity.’

Be Present, Practice Mindfulness. When you are making significant changes in your life, such as a career transformation, it can be stressful and overwhelming. Be present, in the here and now, practice mindfulness, and think about what you can control in this moment, rather than worrying about all the other things you can’t predict. You can then allow yourself to take it one action step at a time. Practicing mindfulness can also help you reduce stress, increase your focus and direct your mind in a more healthy and positive way. One consistent step after another will get you to your goal, your new career. If your intuition is giving you a strong message that it’s time to make some changes, pay attention. If you plan appropriately, you can successfully transform your career. Don’t let another year go by sacrificing your success, joy and fulfillment. Start planning for your career transformation today.

Robbie K Carlson
Life & Leadership Coach
www.Robbiekcarlson.com

References:

Sacre-Dallerup, C. (2017), “Reinvent Me.”

Mindfulness, An Everyday Guide. Magazine, 2018

Get “unstuck” with Association and Disassociation

Health & Wellness, Life Coach Library, Personal Growth & Spirituality

Written by Wendy Cope, Personal-Growth & Recovery Coach, www.healthytothecore.net

Have you ever noticed when a friend comes to you for advice about a situation it is so easy to offer great ideas and solutions to them, yet, when confronted with our own it is much harder to see clearly and come up with practical answers? The reason is we are generally observers for our friends and when we observe, we can think more rationally. We are disassociated with our friends’ challenges. In our own situations we often become our situations. We feel everything, and we get stuck. We are associated with our own dilemmas.

Disassociation:

When we disassociate with something, we are more detached. We have the ability to observe. It’s like watching ourselves on t.v. or from afar. We only see and hear what is going on. We experience feelings about the situation, but not like the characters we are observing who are feeling the powerful sensations.

Be mindful that disassociation has nothing to do with the mental health diagnosis of “dissociative disorder”. Dissociative disorder is characterized by:

* The splitting off from consciousness, as in amnesia or mental blocking.

* Not remembering or connecting to a feeling as a coping or defense mechanism.

Disassociation in this article means to observe a situation to gain a different perspective and decrease the intensity of negative feelings associated with it, both mentally and physically.

Association:

Association is when we relive an experience. We are in it and see everything around us from that perspective. We feel the feelings in what seems like real time. We have other sensory experiences. What we see, hear, smell, even taste, as if it were happening right now. Association is when we are being the active participant.

Try it….

Think of a time you were very happy, like a graduation. What pictures do you see? Are you watching yourself walking across the stage to get your diploma or are you walking across the stage to get it? Whichever one you answered, try to see it from the alternative perspective. Which one feels more intense? Is it happier? Does it feel different physically? Which feeling would you rather have? If you are like most people, association feels much happier. It is usually more sensory, and physically triggers endorphins that add to the emotional experience.

Now think of something that was disappointing, maybe not getting a job you really wanted. What picture do you see now? Are you watching yourself open the mail and reading some type of notice or are you standing there with the reject notice in front of you? Whichever you answered, try it from the other perspective. Which seems less intense? Is there a difference in how you experience it physically? If you are like most people, disassociation takes the sting out of rejection and makes it easier to look at it logically.

When is it best to be Associated or Disassociated?

Unfortunately, research has found that many people disassociate with happy memories and associate with unpleasant ones. That is backwards!!! When we are thinking of something pleasant, we will view it more positively when we are associated in it. It will create positive thoughts which will make us feel happier. When we feel happier, we physically become healthier. Our heart beat settles and our blood pressure calms. If we take a moment to slow down and experience other sensations, (sounds, smells, sights…) it will enhance the feeling even deeper. This can be a powerful tool when trying to get motivated.

Dissociating from unpleasant memories or experiences decreases the emotional pain, depression, and anxiety that often accompany them. When we become an observer (vs. participant) we can see things from an objective viewpoint, and release emotion attached to an event. In my experience, this release has a positive impact both emotionally and physically as well. I have combined this with other techniques to decrease the intensity such as “dimming the lights” and “lowering the volume” (heck, hit the mute button) and “making the screen smaller and fade out”. These tools are powerful because they decrease or eliminate the sensory connections, which is what the unconscious is more likely to hold on to.

It’s never wise to get stuck in one mode or the other. Pain is not comfortable, but it can be part of an important learning and growth experience. When person gets stuck in disassociated mode, they analyze everything rationally but will not experience a range of emotion and are not better off. They should learn how to associate into their feelings, at least some of the time. When someone is so associated with their pain, they relive it over and over, even if unconsciously, and it becomes problematic. It can increase anxiety, depression, and lead to self-destructive behaviors. They would then benefit from learning how to disassociate from painful experiences.

Brown, S.. Psychology Today. Retrieved fromhttps://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/pathological-relationships/201211/dissociation-isnt-life-skill

Hall, L. M. . NLP Mentor. Retrieved from https://nlp-mentor.com/association-dissociation/

Author unknown, World Trans. Retrieved fromhttp://www.worldtrans.org/TP/TP1/TP1-119.HTML

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