Posts Tagged ‘coach’

2talkingThis post might look a little different from most.  I am sharing with you a snippet of a conversation that took place (with permission of course).

I was talking to a client about their goals.  LOADS of frustration on their part because they feel they are scattered all over the place and nothing connects for them.  Add in they have so many goals that they don’t know where to even start.  *Please note I did make some edits in order to protect privacy.

Time to back up this train.

ME:  Where do you want these goals to take you?

CLIENT: What do you mean?

ME:  If I can be kind of ‘devil’s advocate’ for a moment?


ME: What’s the point of doing all this stuff in the first place?

CLIENT: well…(long pause) I guess so I can improve my life. 

ME: Where is your life lacking that you need to improve it?

CLIENT: Me..I’m lacking (this was more blurted out than said).  Haha..no I mean, well, couldn’t we all improve our lives?

ME:  Can we?

CLIENT: I know I can…I just can’t put my finger on where. I-I-hmmm.   I guess I just want to get to a place where I feel happy.

ME: Where is this place?

CLIENT: What? Well..  I guess it’s somewhere in the future when I improve my life.

ME: Okay. So tell me what does this place look like?

CLIENT: Look like?  I hadn’t thought much about that.  I guess it’s where I am happy because I like what I do, who I am and I have good friends and security.  (*to be honest the details were a bit more specific but in fairness to privacy I generalized it)

ME: Do you have any of that right now?

CLIENT: Kind of. (*went on to describe 3 situations)

ME: Wait…so you have 3 places right in the here and now that you find really happy?  So..tell me what makes you feel you must you wait for the future to be happy?

CLIENT: Well, because it’s only part of my life.

ME:  How much of your life must be in place for you to be happy?

CLIENT: uh you mean like a percentage?  I don’t know..hmm.  Oh I see where you going.  Life isn’t ever perfect is it?

ME: Is it?

CLIENT: No.  It isn’t but some people just seem like life is good and I want that.

ME: So, we know no one’s life is perfect and yet some people act like it anyway. 

CLIENT: Huh.  How do they do that?  I guess they just focus on the good stuff?  But you can’t ignore the bad things that happen.

ME: True.  Consider your energy and focus a limited amount of funds every day.  Can you do that?


ME: When you focus on something; good or bad – you spend some of this ‘energy’ fund. Okay?


ME:  Where are you going to put the most of your funds if you want to be happy? 

CLIENT:  Oh! (eyes have lit up and there is a big smile).  I see where this is going.

Okay ladies and gentlemen.  That is all I”m going to share because it gets very personal at that point.  I hope you can see where this was going too.  Just like life – you spend you money on what is important to you.  For most of us that’s housing, clothes, food and then some fun stuff.  But we still have to pay bills, go to the dentist and fix the darn car.   Once the car repairs are paid for though are you going to obsess on them?  No?  You move on. 

This is also how you should treat your negative stuff in life.  Deal with it, and move on.  Learn to let go so it doesn’t consume your thoughts and make it so you can’t take pleasure in the beautiful things and people that do surround you.



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Do you ever get that feeling like your sinking…and sinking and sinking?

Not the one that comes when your stomach sinks and you realize “oh crap, this one thing is not going as expected.” That’s different from what I’m talking about.

I’m talking about the feeling that you are sinking into a deeper and deeper pit of nothingness.  Like some sort of weird emotional quicksand.  I’ve been there and when I think back I’m always reminded of the Neverending Story. Do you remember that?  The story world was being swallowed up but nothingness because of a lack of belief.  Sounds rather familiar no?

The nothingness is a dark place, a lonely place and I want to talk about it.

There I said it.  People have cautioned me about talking about this because they say if you spend a lot of time thinking and writing and thinking some more you are going to invite that into your life.  Bunch o’crap if you ask me.  My intention is not to do that. It is to talk about so those who feel that way know that they are by no stretch of the imagination, alone.  I want to stop the nothingness too!

You are not alone.  The nothingness pit if FULL of people.  Trust me. You just can’t see them yet because that is the trickiest part of feeling this way.  It causes you to isolate yourself without you even realizing it.   It’s hard to see past your own self.

Shame, fatigue, lethargy, confusion, embarassment…you name it.  The emotions that prevent us from stepping out and asking for help runs a rather large list.  

There is so much of this going on right now with all the cutbacks, homes being lost, fear etc that I really feel the need to talk about it. To bring it OUT of the darkness.

There is no shame in falling down.  It happens.  Sometimes, through literally NO fault of our own, sometimes we’ve made a bad choice and sometimes…yes sometimes, we royally screwed up and ended up face first on the floor.

It happens.

As with every event, it’s what you do afterwards that really matters.

What I’ve learned from feeling like life screwed me over, is that I  have a choice at that point.  I can play the victim card and start the sinking.  Or I live in gratitude for what is still in my life and what is still to come. 

I have been in a position where I had to sell some of my things in order to eat.  My goodness that was hard.  I cried and cried about how I didn’t deserve this; how I’d always worked hard and done the ‘right’ things in life.  Yet, here I was. You know what?  At the end of the day it wasn’t that bad.  Stuff is just stuff. 

Here’s the other interesting thing I learned.  The darkness cannot easily exist when the light of love, hope and a thankful heart are present.  It just can’t seem to co-exist.  Don’t get me wrong.  I had some days that were darker than others…but I was no longer sinking into it.  I know where the exit is located.

Can I share an example that still makes me so grateful that I have a bit of tears show up?  I was cutting waaaaaaay back on everything.  I cut out the TV cable and was pretty sad about that because I used it to distract myself from life of painful recovery.  I looked for another way to use my time and I began to use it to read books that taught me so much more about living well.  I count that time as a time of peace and internal healing.  I snuggled up with my dog and cat under a blanket and a cup of tea and read.  I wrote in my journal and had time to reflect and think. 

It was like I had been living in a room with a dim light and suddenly someone added a whole bunch of bright lamps. 

If I had simply despaired, or tried to fight it, I never would have had that time.  I looked for what opportunities presented to me and I stepped up and took them as small as they might seem.

The thing is if you are experiencing that feeling of life being out of your control, please know that it is not.  You have the power to change it. You really do!  It may not happen overnight and there is no magic pill but you can step out of what is dragging you down and pulling you under.  This is what I help with – setting goals and breaking them down to ‘those little steps’ that make a huge difference.  I’ve seen the difference it makes.

Ask for help if you need it.  Sometimes this turns into a depression that needs medical help to overcome.  That’s okay as long as you get the help you need.  Sometimes you just need to force yourself into a next little step.  Let’s face it.  You are reading this and made it to the bottom which tells me you don’t want to live stuck in the dark.  You don’t have to. 

You can do this.  Your light, your energy, is needed in this world as much as anyone’s.  It’s time to talk about feeling like we’ve sunk and are sinking.  It’s time to throw a few life preservers out there for others.  Let’s shed some light on this and lift each other up.


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I mentioned this as a coping skill in my last post “Fooled or Foolish” and I’ve since had the question about what I meant by that.

When I started getting a little better and could be awake for more than an hour at a time, I had to start to deal with all the stuff I ‘missed’.  You see, I was pretty much on my own for this *ahem* adventure in car accidents. 

I didn’t do very well. Or maybe I did.  Either way I did the best I could and that I suppose, is all anyone could ask of themselves.

And when I got a lot better, where I could actually remember what I did the day before, I started to also realize a lot of things had changed.  Myself included and I struggled with that.  I wanted ME back, I wanted my happier life back; I didn’t want to deal all the stuff that had piled up and I fought those changes and problems with avoidance.

I simply refused to deal with it until I what ever issue it was got so big I was forced to do something. 

Looking back I realize that at the time this was a coping skill.  I wasn’t able to deal with literally everything in my life turning upside down and on its head, as well as the emotional upheaval and the pain and rehab…ugh!  It’s not all over with yet either.  I just deal with it much better (most days).

Avoidance is a coping skill.  However, I found out that all that stuff just grows bigger while you’re pretending it’s not there. Now, I really did need to learn to put things aside so I could heal and I have to deal with that. 

However, it’s not a great way to cope over the long haul.  Avoiding life is fine for an afternoon where you have  a migraine that makes you want to hide in bed and just try to survive it.  It’s not a great way to live your life.  And  many do everyday and not because of an accident; they are simply stuck in a terrible cycle.  It causes a great deal of stress and upset, and it doesn’t have to be this way.

Perhaps this is a good thing to have gone through because as a Mindset Coach I can recognize it quite clearly.  I also can relate and understand how much emotion is behind using avoidance.  I also know first hand what it takes to fix it and get through it.

What I want you to know is this.  It doesn’t go away. You can avoid it only so long and you will have to deal with it.  It is much easier to deal with things one at a time as they happen then it is to have everything build up and come crashing down on you all at once. 

Facing up to life, getting things under control takes time, effort and courage.  I ended up having someone totally unexpected come around to help keep me from falling off the edge.  We need support and sometimes even ideas on what to do next when we are overwhelmed.  Boy do I get that.

So, what can I help you with?

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So here we are in 2012!  2011 was a tough year for many people.  However I have openly decided to call 2012 the Year of Possibilities

Why?  It just make sense.  This past few months I have opened the door to learning how to graciously accept the possibilities that have come my way as the universe answered my calls for direction. I want this to continue.  I want to be open to all possibilities and not tied to one outcome.  That is where frustration enters.

If you’ve been one of my long time readers you may remember last year I talked about throwing resolutions out the door.  Instead I offer you this suggestion.  Decide what your intentions are for your life this year.  What do you intend to do with your career, your family, relationships, spirituality etc.  Write these down. There is something about putting thoughts into a permanent place like a journal or list that helps call it into reality. 

Once you have intentions you can begin to set goals around making these things happen for you.

Let me give you an example.

One of my intentions is to take my Coaching to the next level.  My intention in no way sets out how this will look. It is time for me to decide that when I set my next goal around this intention.  So, to honor that intention I will set a goal for January of speaking to 5 new people a week (no repeats allowed) about coaching.  I also may set some goals longer term or include different aspects of what this will look like. I may also include asking those I already know to share my website or blog with 3 people they know. (hint hint)

Words have power.  They do.  Proclaiming New Year resolutions have become a bit of a sad joke. We fully expect that we will fail at them and so set ourselves up to do so.  However if we take time to decide what we want and intend to do overall this coming year we then can regain focus and set wise goals.  I will have a terrific quest post coming up (whohoo!) by Farouk Radwan of  www.2knowmyself.com  that will talk about setting goals.  Look for that and more posts around starting this year off well.

When you list your intentions don’t forget to look at all aspect of your life.   Make sure you feel them deep in your heart.  Try to examine if this is something YOU want or something you think you should want.  These intentions can be also about what you no longer want in your life.  What you intend to let go of. In fact, sometimes I find these are more powerful intentions.

  • family
  • relationships
  • work
  • career
  • spirituality
  • personal growth
  • love
  • health
  • values
  • finances
  • truth

The possibilities for your life are endless.  Set out what you want and then make a plan to get there.  Remember what I always say “if you don’t know where you are going, how will you know when you get there?”

Instead of making resolutions this year, why not join me in setting intentions around what you want to bring into your life, and what you want to let go of?

What are some of your intentions for this year?  Is there any way I can help?

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It is just a few days before Christmas and I just had a talk with someone who started off in an unusual way.  This (possible) client wanted to see what coaching was about and so set up a time for the free discovery session that I offer.  The most interesting part was they told me straight away that they didn’t think this coaching ‘crap’ would work.  Well, while I appreciate honesty, you’d think I’d be upset by that wouldn’t you? You know, on some level they think must differently or they would not have set up this appointment.  THAT was fear talking.

I introduced my practice as I usually do, which includes me asking what brings them to coaching.  Well it was a good thing I was sitting down because a flood gate opened.  Normally, I try to keep my discovery sessions to between 20-30 mins. About half the time of a normal session. 

Thankfully today I was able to extend that because I am certain that for 20 mins I just listened until they wore themselves down and could take a breath.  I know what it’s like to finally feel like someone hears me so I simply listened with an open heart and let them have the time.  So glad the holidays mean I slow everything down. It meant I had the time to offer.  And once again the universe conspired!

I, of course, will not share the details but my heart really hurt for this person. They were in a great deal of confusion, fear based reality and stress.  Yes I could help them work through this but, as with everything, the person has to be willing

When they finally seemed to have spent their emotional release, I asked them to stop, breathe and helped them center themselves.  I suggested they pick one issue for today that we could bring to the forefront.  It really didn’t take long for the question to come back.  “What did I think? Is it better to be with someone who makes you feel crappy over the holidays or feel lonely because you are by yourself?”  Yup, I know…there must be a deep story there right?  One they don’t seem ready to open up about.

Here’s the thing, my opinion isn’t what counts here. It’s yours.  That being said after a few minutes of my questioning, asking and trying to reflect and get more from them I heard a divine whisper this was not just about the problem, it was a trust issue between the client and I. They didn’t yet trust that I cared or that I could/would help them.

I paused for a moment.  I regrouped and asked a very important question.  “what is the third option?”  I won’t burden you with the  responses of confused ‘what?’ and ‘huh?’ However, the point got made.  We are not limited to the options we often think we are. 

Now I don’t want to sound too over the top,  but this was a wonderful moment for me as a coach. I could almost hear the swooshing sound as realization set in for this person.  We actually came up with about a half-dozen, really do-able options.  The voice I was listening too already felt much more at ease, much lighter and hopeful.  Gosh but I love what I do!

The last thing I ask after every session is for clients to tell me what important thing they are taking away from the time we spent together.  I was expecting this person to talk about the ‘third option’ or something like that.  Instead they told me, totally seriously, that they learned today that coaching isn’t really a bunch of  crap. 

I am still smiling from that.

There are two reasons I tell you this story.  First is the lessons I learned. Sometimes, the question hides more than just the answer.  And yes, there is often many more options available to us if we remember to look for them. 

The second reason is to share the happiness I felt when I was not only able to spend the time freely and compassionately, but when I hear someone able to find belief in themselves, to look for the light in the dark and to realize they are worth the effort. 

If you are regular reader you know that compassion is one of my very top values.  I realize that I could have gotten annoyed that this half hour turned into over an hour. After all, this was a free call!  Instead I am rejoicing because I was in a position to show compassion in this case and release the time to this person.  I look at is as gift I was able to give and to receive this holiday. 

This holiday look for your opportunities to practice compassion, to really take time to listen to those around you.  Look for the unplanned opportunities to be kind to others; even perfect strangers.  It really is a gift you can give yourself. 

Blessings and warm hugs this holiday time from me to you!

May you always have walls for the winds, a roof for the rain,

tea beside the fire, laughter to cheer you,

those you love near you, and all your heart might desire.

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After talking about the importance of understanding and working from personal core values a lovely gentleman stopped me to ask a couple of questions. At one point he mentioned he had never met an expert on core values before.

Surprised I explained I was no expert.

He pointed out that I sure seemed like one seeing as I wrote a book on the subject, gave workshops and coached around this.

I appreciated his compliment but I still have to say I’m no expert.


In my mind an expert knows pretty much all there is to know on a topic and has little left to learn.

I learn every time I have a workshop from the discussions and aha moments.

I learn every time I assist a client to explore, pinpoint and begin to create a life they love from value centered living. I learn from the many articles both for and against value based living.

I think the word expert is oft over used and too often a marketing ploy. I have had a business coach tell me recently point blank, I need to be an expert in something. Really? Hmmm. Just like that?

That just feels wrong to me. Core values are personal and I certainly cannot be the expert on yours for you now can I? Do I have to be am expert to coach you on this?

I reject that notion. Instead I consider myself an advocate of value based living. A support and guide for my clients as they become experts on the only life they can… their own.

What do you think about all these experts?

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Do not wait; the time will never be “just right.” Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have.
 Napoleon Hill
I’m a big fan of Napoleon Hill.  This is one of my favourite statements given by the gentleman.  What does it really mean? It it actually more complex than it seems on the surface I think..and yet so simple at the same time.
A lot of what I do with clients is help them begin the process of change.  They know they want something to be ‘different’.  Once we find a direction often I get the ‘reasons why’ they can’t or will have trouble moving towards their goals

As a coach I get this.  It’s a conditioned mindset most of us have from time to time.  It can come from simple fear of change, worry about reactions from others and even real honest to goodness concerns about how on Earth we are going to get from here to there!  Some goals are pretty lofty and can seem overwhelming. 
This is where I love to use the quote above to begin a discussion.  It’s can be a fairly lively discussion especially in a group setting.  My coaching goal in doing this is to facilitate a shift from the ‘I can’t because” thinking to a “what CAN I do” sort of thinking.  The part Mr. Hill says about using whatever tools you have right now is super important! I could of course simply TELL my clients this basic idea but in all truth it isn’t effective to do so.  Far more effective is to when people discover this for themselves and start to consider the possibilities.
 Take for instance a client in one of my group sessions who wanted to travel, but felt stuck due to money issues.  Fair enough right? I mean plane tickets, hotels etc are pretty darn expensive.  During our discussion about the above quote and what it really means she suddenly stopped and said “you know, I could start an account to save up to go somewhere”.  Great idea. We wrote that down and continued our talk. At another point she was furiously scribbling something down in her notebook.  After our group session I asked how she was feeling. With a big smile she read off her notes with 4-5 new steps actually COULD do today to move her towards her goal of seeing the world.  I loved one about joining a meet-up group of experienced travellers to learn better ways to travel!  Brilliant and really outside the money only box.
So, are you feeling blocked on your road?  
What would happen if you sat back on just considered what is possible for you to do today to take a step to where you want to be?


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