We all know how difficult it is to change. Yet the world is shouting at us to do exactly that. And we want to change. Many of us yearn to change –we’re tired of the old ways of doing things. But we feel constricted, bound by our programming. By the time we’re adults, most of us have habits deeply etched into our neuro-programming and many of them are on automatic.
How, then, can we evolve ourselves to become our best selves, and live lives that are respectful of all other sentient beings on the planet?
This is where coaching can truly make a difference. Here’s why why it works:
1) As the famous writer Anais Nin once said, “We don’t see things as they are, we see things as WE are.” Therefore, we imagine that what we see out there is “reality” rather than just a projection of our own consciousness. Good coaches know this and help us to work with our perceptions. They help us look deeper than the issues we’re presenting and work with our patterns. Most importantly, they get us excited about seeing things differently and expanding our thinking in ways that catalyses us in exciting new ways.
2) Making changes usually feels uncomfortable. We love our habits, even if they don’t always serve us. Some people expect new behaviours to feel good right away and tell themselves “this doesn’t feel right” when they take a new action and as a result, slip back into the old ways. A good coach can help us understand the process of change and helps keep us on track and stay steady until the unfamiliar becomes familiar.
3) A coach will tell us things that family members and friends usually won’t. Also, because feedback is being delivered by someone with no agenda other than helping us be our best. This helps us to hear it more deeply and work with it without resistance.
4) Most of us have a far easier time breaking agreements we’ve made with ourselves than those we make with others. A coach can hold us accountable until we learn more how to do that ourselves.
5) Coaching gives us the experience of having someone truly believe in us and our ability to create what our hearts yearn for. Coaches work hard to help make that happen. And perhaps most importantly, they believe in us even when we have lost belief. This can be a game changer.
I have worked as a personal development coach for over 30 years so I’m very experienced in helping people change. My mission is to help people be fully in charge of themselves. I want to help more people do that. To that end, this spring, I’m offering something new: training sessions on specific tools. I’m calling the series, TOOLS FOR TAKING CHARGE.
Some may be offered as a group experience, but most will involve a 1-1 training that will give you an hour of training in a specific skill-set to help you manage your energy and put you in charge of how you think and feel about a challenging situation in your life. The sessions will be over the phone or Skype, or Zoom–your preference.
I will be offering a different ‘tool’ each newsletter for the next few weeks. Because I want to encourage people who’ve never experienced coaching with me before, I’m offering these 1 hour sessions at a “Gosh, I can’t resist that” price.
This week’s tool for taking charge is: Tapping.
Maybe you’d like to become more confident, or get over an upset feeling you have with someone, or want to handle a nagging health issue more resourcefully. Tapping can be effective with any issue that is causing you stress. It works by freeing up stuck emotional energy by stimulating specific energy points in body’s meridians. (These meridians are the same ones that acupuncturists use.
In this one hour tapping training, I will explore the physical and emotions symptoms of the situation you want to work with. I will then formulate a series of powerful statements that will target the physiological and psychological issues and after demonstrating the location of the points, I will take you through the protocol using these statements. (The specificity of the statements is important. Without this, the protocol has limited power as some of you might have experienced if you’ve tried to do it yourself.
At the end of the three-round process, you will be able to assess the change that’s taken place.
And the “Gosh, I can’t resist” price is $99.
I will give a full refund if you aren’t pleased with the outcome.
Please send me an email if you’d like to have one of these sessions or if you have questions.
That’s it for this week.
As always, I’m your biggest fan.
There are two stages to making anything happen: getting something moving, and keeping something moving. Of the two, the ‘activation’ stage is the hardest. If you’ve ever driven into a ditch and tried to get unstuck, you know that to be true. Just getting something in motion can take a substantial amount of teeth-clenching grit. But once you do, the force of the motion, momentum, starts doing part of the work for you and it’s easier.
As a personal development coach, I work a lot with people who are stuck. Some people get stuck for a short period of time, others for longer. I’ve noticed a few characteristics of those who stay stuck for a while.
1) They spend time and energy focussing on how unfair it is that they’re in the ditch.
2) They beat themselves (or others) up for getting stuck.
3) They focus on the repercussions of being stuck—how it’s going to make them late, what their significant might say, etc.
All of these responses will just get your covered in more mud. And they’ll drain your energy and make it harder to do the one thing you need to do: get on the road again.
At times like this, visualization can be a veritable tow-truck.
People often underestimate the power of visualizaton for getting unstuck. But visualization gets you to focus on what you want, not on what you don’t want and this will catalyze new solutions to flood into your mind. It will make you feel hopeful and more energetic for taking action. Lastly, because we live in a “Like attracts Like” universe, (that’s why people tend to return your smile when you give them one and stop complimenting you if you reject their positive compliments) visualization will prompt the Universe to get busy matching your vision.
Are you convinced yet? Start using it and see what happens. For greatest impact, it’s best to lay down the energetic foundation of what you want to create as clearly as you can. So, when you do a visualization, make it as vivid as possible. Using the car in the ditch example, imagine the feeling of the gas pedal on the ball of your right foot, the sound of the car engine as it speeds down the road, the satisfied feeling you’ll have in your belly when you’re driving away. Because soon you will be. And when you are, you won’t be drained by letting the rats of negative thinking feed on your energy field.
Visualization is one of many tools I discuss in my new book, Find Your Inner Gold, 21 Powerful Tools to Bring Back Your Shine. I wrote the book because I wanted to offer more people the tools I use in my coaching practice. My vision is to teach people how to self-modulate and become more self-empowered to create soul-satisfying lives.
The book is getting great reviews, but one I particularly liked this week was:
“Pure gold. It’s more than a ‘must-read’, it’s an eternal read, a loving resource book and a joyous gift to the soul.” Nancy Falconer.
Common Communication Mistakes:
When Carol first called me for coaching, she had a long list of complaints about her husband, who I’ll call Don. Even though they’d only been married a few years, she was not happy with him. And of course, he felt the sting of her disappointment. Yet really, Carol was just committing one of many common communication mistakes.
The problem, as I saw it, was not her feelings, it was how she dealt with them – by complaining to her husband regularly. As a result, he became so used to hearing her upsets that he started ignoring them and telling her that he didn’t think he could ever make her happy.
I asked Carol to list her complaints in the order of upset they caused her. She made the list happily. I then started to work with her on complaint #5. (I didn’t want to start with the most upsetting) and asked her to write why this bothered her.
Her 5th complaint was that her husband didn’t do the things she asked him to do.
Generalized complaints are disastrous to communications. So I asked her to get specific. What specific thing was he not doing?
She replied quickly. “He hasn’t fixed the leaky tap.”
Now that I had a specific, I asked her to write down why it was important to her.
“Because it’s something he should do,” she replied.
I winced. To me, ‘shoulding’ ourselves or others is just not helpful.
So, I asked her to rephrase that, but only using the pronoun “I” and to describe how she would feel if the tap got fixed.
“I would be able to relax,” she said. “And I would feel like my needs matter.”
Great. We were making progress. She was being specific about the issue, she was describing why it mattered, so it was now time to prompt her into asking her husband for what she wanted him to do, rather than voicing her upset about him not doing things. I can’t say how important this step is and what a game changer it can be.
She wasn’t sure about this.
“But what if he continues to ignore me?” she said.
I suggested she make a request for a specific date to test it out. And to add an alternative action if he didn’t want to do what she asked.
Here’s what Carol ended up emailing her husband. (Many men are very visual and email works well for this.)
“Would you fix the tap in the basement this week? It would feel so good to me to have it done. I would feel so considered by you if you did it. If you can’t or don’t want to do it, can we say by the end of the weekend, would it be okay with you if I called someone else to do the work?”
Carol sent it off and didn’t hear from Don about it, but later that day heard some sounds in the basement and sure enough, Don was fixing the tap.
I’ll start working on the other things in her list once she’s recovered from shock.
If you want to spruce up your communication skills, follow these guidelines:
!) Talk only about ‘specific’ situations.
2) Talk about what you want, not what you don’t want.
3) Provide information about how it would feel to you to get what you want.
4) Suggest a completion date.
5) Suggest an alternative.
If I can help you make your communication more effective, let me know. Call me for a chat.
Please pass this on to anyone you think might benefit! Thanks!
Recent science is showing that most of our thinking travels along well-worn pathways in the brain. It’s much easier to keep thinking in the old ways than to go off-road, so to speak, and go in new directions.
The problem with old ways of thinking is that since action follows thought, if we don’t change the way we think, we’re going to get to the same old places. But, how to change the nay-saying that goes on in our minds and stops us?
Today I have some ‘brain’ exercises to help you. Start by choosing something that you usually think of as difficult. Don’t choose something that’s hugely difficult, just something that’s moderately difficult. Also choose something you can do soon, so you can test out the effects of the exercise I’m about to give you. I’m going to choose making dinner because I’m tired and it’s feeling hard to think about going down to the kitchen to make something.)
Step 1: Create a picture of you doing this something easily.
Step 2: Freeze frame an image of that coming true.
Step 3: Make the picture hugely brighter. Imagine you have a dial and that you can turn up the brightness big time. Do that.
Step 4: Imagine the size of the picture you have in your brain and make it 5 times bigger so the image is right in your face.
Step 5: Imagine the feelings of satisfaction in your body being huge, swelling through your entire body.
Step 6: Step into that picture in your mind. Let it be a ‘live’ picture now and hear what you would be hearing, feel what you would be feeling, see what you would be seeing.
Step 7: Test this out as soon as you can.
As for me, I just did this exercise on my ‘making dinner’ difficulty. I’m noticing that I feel a LOT more positive and energetic about making dinner and am going to do this right now!
Before I go, just let me say that this exercise is like a lot of the exercises in the 40-day online course, ‘Change Your Energy, Change Your Life’. If you want to try the first 10 days at no charge, click HERE!
"Karen has helped me transform my life. I am so grateful." ~Kelly Cowan. Trainer
"Karen guided me back to my essential self. During huge career changes, she helped me create balance. She's also a load of fun." - Kathy Shulman