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Posts Tagged ‘life changes’

Have you taken a good hard look at an acorn? They actually quite small aren’t they? I mean it’s a good size meal for a squirrel I guess but even those furry guys can handle a couple at a time.

In fact, my dog likes to knock them around at the park as if they were some sort of naturally occurring super ball. Yup, they bounce pretty good, but they roll really fast so that’s exciting. It’s cute when he tosses them up in the air and catches them.

But take a closer look. They have a pretty hard, smooth brown shell that is really quite lovely with an almost cute little cap.acorn-oak-nut

Now look up and around…you see that big tree they came from? Take a moment to really let it sink in that this little acorn has all the potential in the world to grow to those heights. Really kind of amazing isn’t it?

This is what your faith in yourself can be like.

For those of us who’ve been hurt, rejected and broken our faith in who we are can seem shattered and non-existent. But it’s not. It’s in every one of us; it might feel hidden or in hibernation but it’s there.

OAKtreeKind of like the potential for amazing things is hidden inside that little acorn.  Nurture that acorn just a little and it will burst forth with all the determination you could imagine to grow and thrive into a giant, towering oak.  This little acorn doesn’t even recognize its final goal, it just knows the next step is to take the chance and break through the shell it’s been protected by for so long.

You can do that too.  Look, a little faith in your hidden acorns; your faith in your own gifts and potential, can go a long way to starting to allow yourself to grow and thrive.  To peek through that crack in your shell to see that the sun is shining.

But like acorns these little nuggets of faith need to be nurtured.  They need to be brought out into the light, allowed to feel the rain and grow some roots.  And just like the acorn, this is a fragile process at first.  One that need gentleness, care and time.    You need to stretch and reach for the sun.

We have all the potential to thrive and grow into something even more amazing than we are today.  And like the acorn it takes persistence!

Find your little acorn of faith.  What can you do today to nurture it?  What little ways can you begin to starting to grow your own potential?  Little steps, small goals can add up to be quite an amazing thing don’t you agree?

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I hear a lot of new clients or friends who get upset when I talk about being in control of your own life.  Like, really upset.

In fact, one person very recently called me out on it pretty harshly.  I’m okay with that.  I’ve found the blessing in this. When someone calls you out on your beliefs it can cause you to really look deeply at them and in this case bring about a strengthening of them and a deeper understanding.

The problem is one I totally get …because they are right.  Completely right.  You see, they were upset because I said that people create their life with their actions and thoughts.  This person slammed down the point that life happens and we can’t control what others do to us and around us.  “Look all the people who lost their houses, jobs and had their life crumble” He said.  “You’re blaming THEM?” 

Ouch. He was angry at me with righteous indignation on his part with the understanding that he had.  I kind of admired him for that actually.  A real stand-up guy if you think about it.

However, there was a part of this idea that he was missing

While he was totally right – we can’t often control the experiences we have in life.  We might lose our job and income through no fault of our own.  Accidents happen (tell me about it!) that can destroy our life as we know it, and so on.  However, we can control how we experience those circumstances.  We ultimately choose our reactions.  Oh sure sometimes we have immediate reactions that are based more on baser emotions, but we can calm ourselves or feed that fire.

I know people who allow petty annoyances to create a huge amount of chaos in their life.  I also know people who have had great tragedy befall them who have chosen to create something positive out of it. 

You can choose to let life happen TO you, or you can take the controls and begin to create a life that reflects who you are and who you want to be.

So let me be clear here.  You may not be able to control WHAT experiences you have in life – but you can control HOW you experience them. 

In this coming New Year I want you to consider that. This is a fresh year that can allow us a perfect time to begin to make shifts to bring about a happier, more vibrant life.  Will you join me in taking the controls back in your life?  I think it’s time we all understand we are responsible for our own happiness and quite capable of creating it.

 

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Please raise your hand if this applies to you.  If thing are going too well,  how many of start to get nervous?

C’mon now..don’t be shy. I know I’m not the only one.  And it’s no longer being blamed on my being a Libra either! 

Life has a way of ebbs and flows that I used to think had to even out somewhere.  So in my mind if something good happened that meant something equally bad was going to also appear to ‘even’ out things.

Crazy right?

Maybe, but I don’t think I was or am alone.   There is a reason we have sayings like ‘waiting for the other shoe to drop’ right?  Or the idea of ‘walking a tight rope”.  It seems the idea of Life Balance may be a little off.

Why on earth do we assume that we can’t simply have an overall happy life with a few blips along the way?  Instead we prefer to think that the world is out to ‘get’ us, that we will be victims of something or other if we don’t worry enough and be vigilant. 

Boy oh boy does this suck the life right out of us. 

Have you ever stopped to think that this might be true only because we make it so?  I have noticed that there is a limit to what is acceptable happiness.  Kind of like a glass ceiling of sorts and if we get to close to feeling just blissfully happy we start to pull away from it. 

Holy Crap….as a society as we afraid of being too happy???

We worry about being too happy, we worry about being depressed, we worry, worry, worry!  Heck we even talk about how worried we are as if it is the thing to be doing. 

I wonder, how uncomfortable would it feel for you to reply to the question “how are you?” with “I’m really quite happy and joyful”?   But we are all perfectly okay with replying to the same question with “oh my goodness I feel awful” or “okay I guess” or “I’ve had better days”.  

We are all so accepting of everyone being miserable that we are hardly concerned when someone tells us they are.  This is concerning. How will we ever hear a cry for help is all we hear is this sort of thing?

Why is one socially okay but not the other? Is it a misery loves company sort of thing?  Hmmm.

I know that my thoughts create my reality and I know my thoughts become my words and actions.  SO perhaps what we need to do is start allowing the positives, the blessings to be what we say and do. 

It’s time to make being happy the normal, and being down in the dumps unusual. 

So, I’m going to try a little experiment and I hope you join me.  For the next week or so I’m only going to talk about how great things are and I won’t be awkward about feeling good.  I am going to share how blessed I feel, how grateful I am for what I have in my life rather than complain I don’t have everything perfect (yet).  I’m going to cheer and celebrate when something good happens and downplay the not-so-good.  You know..the reverse of what most of us do now.

I want to see how others react.  Will they be uncomfortable, annoyed or join me in my positive thinking? 

What do you think? Will you help me with this experiment?

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Avoidance.

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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Remember that old childhood game?

Someone got to be Mr. Wolf and everyone else screamed at the other end of the playground “What Time is it Mr. Wolf?”

The Wolf would whirl around and yell out a random time like 2 o’clock whereupon all the children would move forward 2 steps.

Eventually, the group would be closer and closer to Mr. Wolf.  Ooooh the excitement because any moment the wolf could yell “lunch time” instead of an actual time.

Then screaming begins; the chase is on and someone might get tagged to be the next wolf.

So exciting…so much fun!

You know what?  I’ve been wondering myself what time it is lately.  I realize something.   My quest for my ‘next step’ is kind of like that old game.

The thing is to some degree I hold both positions; wolf and the player trying not to be dinner!

I have to sometimes be the wolf and decide what time it is.  Sometimes I have to be the player who despite feeling like a nervous Nellie also feels the excitement and fun of advancing even though I might get tagged or out.  Too much fun to stop.

Earlier this year was a different time for me.  Earlier this year was the time to pick up challenges and go after them all.  It was a ‘say YeS’ to life time.  It was awesome!

Right now I am feeling times have changed.  I have asked my inner Mr Wolf what time it is and I’m hearing it’s a time to let go.  Scary, painful but exciting all at the same time because I understand that this time too will change and better things will be coming my way as soon as I make room for them. 

No matter what time is it, I keep moving forward.  I keep finding ways.   The important thing is to know what time it is for you.

Is it time for:

  • letting go
  • taking a bold step
  • finding the questions to ask
  • taking a break
  • recharging
  • charging forward
  • change

No matter what time it is in your life; listen to your inner wolf and honor him/her.  Mr. Wolf calls out the time, you have to try to move forward.

So I’m asking you, what time is it for you  Mr. Wolf?

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Do you ever feel called to go somewhere..as if something is calling you home?  Only you aren’t really sure where that is?

It’s been as far back as I can remember that I have felt like I was not ‘home’ just yet.   I’m not even sure what that means.  After all my mind tells me that home is where you make it; where you’re loved ones are.

I have been turning this feeling over and over again as the pull is getting stronger once more.  For a while I thought perhaps all I was looking for was a fresh start or something new and exciting…but I can’t imagine that being it after all the fresh starts and new and exciting things I’ve experienced.

Oh sure the call quiets its incessant and restless nudging to get going…for a while, but it always returns. 

It makes me wonder, am I looking for a place? A feeling? Could it me I am meant to be somewhere for a reason?  I’ve read books on past lives, destiny and more to try to understand this strange need to search out some place.  The one I am looking for. Oh!  Why does the Universe insist on these cryptic messages?  C’mon…a quick memo or short note would be nice right?

What do you think?  Can you belong to a certain place…even if only for a while?  Or do you make a home?

I do not know what my next step is.  One thing I am certain of is this place, where I am not isn’t it.  I enjoy living here for lots of reasons but they are all really superficial and other than the ocean won’t be terribly missed.

Hmmm, I wonder is it a place or myself I’m looking for?  I can’t deny the restlessness and the wanting to move.  There has been no major upset or real reason to move other than I just don’t feel home.   It also seems like every time I turn a corner in my own personal growth and life the call comes back stronger than ever.   

I look around and it seems that most people are quite content where they are. I know from experience that looks can often be deceiving; especially when it comes to matters of the heart.  In searching for my own answers I looked to what other people think around the idea of home and came across this.

The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.
Maya Angelou

I certainly seems that I am not alone in my search for home.   Just what does that mean though?

When I think about what I am looking for I have a vision in my head.  It’s peaceful and quiet and green.  There is room to breathe.  My home, no matter how temporary, has always been open and welcoming to others, while still being my safe haven.  Truly you can build this anywhere, I have done so in many, many places.

This is going to take a while to figure out.  This is one thing I love about mindset mentoring…if I have a phone I can work from anywhere!  What I do know is there is a change coming.  What that will be is, for now, anyones guess. 

Are you home? How do you know?

 

 

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Let’s face it…we all have stress.  I know I sure do.

Sometimes, we simply have a situation like a job interview, sometimes it’s just been a busy and overwhelming day, and occasionally we are dealing with a situation over time that causes the stress to last and for days of overwhelm bleed into one another, until we start to forget how to be relaxed!

Long drawn out stress or constant stress can really do a number on you.  It affects your sleep (hello 3 am!) , your body (ugh..belly fat!) and your moods.  It decreases your focus and concentration.  Prolonged stress can affect your desire to do things you normally enjoy (going out, hobbies, sex).  It makes you fatigued and more inclined to get and stay sick.  Oh, and it causes wrinkles…yuck!

My point?  You have to do something to alleviate the stress in your body and mind or you will be unhealthy.

Many of the tips below can apply to all different types of stress, although I’d perhaps wait to exercise til after your job interview.  😉

Stress busting tips.

1.  Exercise.  Many of the chemicals and hormones released from our stress reaction comes from the old response called fight or flight.  Back in the day we needed this to boost our ability to survive encounters with the not-so-friendly environment.  Now, we usually can’t run away nor physically challenge that which is giving us stress.  At least not without medical or police intervention.  The best way to get rid of this type of stress is to exercise. 

2. Being Mindful.  Pay attention to how you are feeling emotionally and how your body is reacting.  Are you tensing up the muscles in your neck?  Is your stomach twisting in knots?  Are you getting angry and moody?  Being mindful comes without judgment, it is simply accepting and exploring how your body is reacting and how you are feeling breath by breath.

Before you can do anything about your stress you need to look at it, know it and acknowledge it.  Sometimes this alone can help bring the stress value down a little.

3. Choose how you react.  If you have been paying attention to my blog for a while you know I strongly believe in choice. We are in command and we get to choose how we life this life.  Sure, sometimes our emotions are very strong and we need to feel these before we can move through them; but we don’t have to let them dictate how we react to life. 

We choose what we think about.  I am a huge advocate of living from Gratitude.  Try blessing a situation and focusing on the things you do have to be grateful for and see how your stress decreases.  Focusing on what stresses you out all of the time only serves to build it up.

4. Make a plan.  This is one of my favourite things to do when I have a very stressful situation.  The way a plan might look will depend upon your needs and the situation of course, but I find putting it down on paper incredibly releasing.  Sometimes we feel we just dont’ know what to do or how to do it.  The act of creating a plan itself gives us a feeling of taking control and that is an important step. 

It also organizes our thoughts and gets them out of the circling stress ball we create in our heads.  It’s been my experience as well that once we take an objective look at things they are rarely so hopeless or scary as we first thought.  Consider trying a brainstorming session, a step by step plan, mind map or simply letting your feelings flow out onto the paper.

5. Take a break from it all.  Yup. Turn off the phone, tv, computer and do something else that will give you a mental and physical break from what is stressing you out.  Go dancing, read a favourite book, hike a trail, volunteer…whatever gets you a break.  You need to let yourself have these times off or you will burn out.

6. Find support.  Depending on your needs you might look for a friend to listen or you might want to seek professional help to sort it out.  People…we are not meant to go through this life alone.  Stop martyr-ing yourself and allow others to give you a hand up.  Ideas?  Try your doctor, online groups, friends, or even a Coach.

7. Have a laugh.  There is no rule book for life. Therefore, there is no rule that just because life is handing you some crappy cards you  must be miserable everywhere and in every aspect of your life.  Put your worries in time out and find the joyful gifts you have been given; laugh when things are funny, smile because you still can. 

8. Meditate and/or deep breathing exercises.  Not everyone feels super comfortable with meditating, and sometimes it isn’t really viable.  Still, it is a practice I really urge you to pick up.  Can’t or not sure? Try some deep breathing exercises.  These are  milder version of meditation and in a wonderful twist of events breathing is done everywhere and so you can also do these types of exercises just about anywhere! 

What do you do to help reduce stress in your life?  Everyone has their own tricks and tips. Please share yours!

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