Courage to Be Yourself

Come on jump into the fun of being yourself!
Come on jump into the fun of being yourself!

Throughout our lives we have received input on who and what we should do do be ok.  Some of us have huge ideas that are impossible to reach or often these ideas are conflicting.  We read magazine articles or books trying to improve ourselves and if you are like me these are sometimes helpful and sometimes make us feel a little less than or never able to measure up to others.  Other people look like they have life easy and have achieved perfection or gotten it all together.  So,we try harder and sometimes we are successful and other times fall on our faces.  For me the break though came when I realized no one really has achieved this perfection.  Everyone puts on a nice smile and gets dressed the same way I do!  I can learn great things from others in one area or another and they can actually learn from me in another.  I am so lucky to have a long time friend who taught me to be more structured and organized with my days with young babies.  She is highly gifted in this area.  She in turn says she learned from me to relax more and have more fun with her kids.  We all have strengths and weaknesses.  The challenge it to grow in both of them; to understand and accept our own unique selves while continuing to grow! Continue reading “Courage to Be Yourself”

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Living With Dementia

Titus and his Great Gram!
Titus and his Great Gram!

All things considered, it could of been a lot worse.  The transition of moving my MIL to my home went very smoothly.  I took her out shopping and eating while hubby and the kids worked hard and recreated her apartment in my former master suite.  On bringing her home we just showed her, her new home.   She keeps forgetting where she lives and we have to bring her into her room over and over again.  Repeatedly, it is like she is seeing it for the first time and is happy with it and very thankful. Continue reading “Living With Dementia”

Conquering the Fear of Decluttering part 2

Last time I wrote about how for changes in our habits we need to look at out beliefs on that topic.  What are we telling ourselves that crate a conflict between what we want to do and how we actually live.

You can live fully in the present!!  Let it go, Let it go!
You can live fully in the present!! Let it go, Let it go!

Continue reading “Conquering the Fear of Decluttering part 2”

Conquering the Fear of Decluttering!

My coaching philosophy is a systems approach where we make internal changes to produce outward results.  There are times when trying to change external habits or behavior can reveal inner blocks.  If we can address these blocks and transform them we can create lasting change and action is not painful or difficult.  Let me give a great example here from my life. In this series of blogs, I will walk you through the process. It was too long, so I am having to break it into several posts.  This process is helpful for removing blocks  in any area of life where you feel stuck. Continue reading “Conquering the Fear of Decluttering!”

Blog Post #100 – Yippeee!

395549_261699080561387_146189222112374_736403_1165990731_n[1]Knowing my hundredth post was coming up, I have been thinking of  what would be most important to write about.  Many ideas came to mind, but none that sounded really perfect for celebrating my 100 blog milestone.  That is when it hit me—  Of course– Celebrate the Milestone!!!!   Hooray   Hooray!  Time for the happy dance and confetti! Continue reading “Blog Post #100 – Yippeee!”

How was your weekend?? It depends on your perspective!

Fun time or stressful.  The choice is mine!
Fun time or stressful. The choice is mine!

It is so easy to look at the lives of others and think about how amazing they are, and then compare our family and life to this vision.  We see our own foibles and feel somehow like we fall short of the dream life and family.  The truth is there is no perfect life or family.  The reality is that life is a roller coaster.  We can however, choose our focus and the meanings we place on events.  Care for an example from my crazy weekend trip?

Continue reading “How was your weekend?? It depends on your perspective!”

Pomp And Circumstance and New Challenges!

HOORAY,  It is that time again.  Time for graduations.  Admittedly, I love graduations.  Just the song playing gives me goosebumps and makes me misty- eyed.  To come together for the purpose of honoring these people who have stepped forward, worked hard and achieved their goal is very gratifying to me.  Whether it is Kindergarten, High School or University, it is important to stand with them and celebrate this huge accomplishment  and stand with them in support in going forward in their next steps.

For those of us long past these years of graduations ourselves it is fun to be the encouragers, cheerleaders, supporters.  But then think about this. How long has it been since you have set a challenge for yourself, worked hard and celebrated the achievement?.  We often just let days slide by, doing what needs to be done, caught up in just getting by or paying the bills, feeding ourselves and cleaning etc. We may have do- do lists or checklists, but if we are honest, these things don’t really challenge us or push the  boundaries of our abilities.  We often procrastinate because we really don’t care about these activities and then when the deadline looms, we engage and meet the deadline.  You may balk at the idea of taking on one more thing, because face it life is busy and often already overwhelming.   What I am suggesting here is rising above the mundane idea of what everyone else wants you to do with your life or what is expected.   Setting a real challenge in your life, something that you choose because of a drive within your self.  Choose a challenge that makes you feel alive and engaged in the process.  Choose something that required your full attention, both physical and mental focus.

For some of you it could be taking a class in something that interests you or just learning something new.  A new language, learning to knit or just a new stitch or pattern, teaching a class or painting a room are just a few possibilities that come to mind.  Of course learning to blog is a great new endeavor!  Choose something that allows you t stretch a little more than the skills you already have.  Go beyond what is comfortable and stretch into it.  note the word slightly.  If you are a couch potato, you should not expect your self to run a marathon this year.  You can work up to it.  One mile, then a 5K ect.

Set your goal and then a plan realistic time for it to be completed. If you just make it someday, then you never will do it.  Will it be one month, a quarter of a year (3 months) or a year.  Short goals are good because they provide faster gratification and give you momentum in your life.

Then of course Celebrate!!!   Invite others to join you in some meaningful way!   Have them celebrate with you.  It might just me to say, “Come look at my new room.”  Of course you can always post here and I will rejoice with you!

Then set a new goal for the next month and use the momentum to keep you going.    Hooray for new challenges!  I like to set a challenge for each month of the year to be completed in this month.  It keeps me feeling alive and moving forward in my days.

 

What will be your next challenge to take on in your life? 

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Frustration RX

A simple, effective technique for dealing with frustration.  try it and see.
A simple, effective technique for dealing with frustration. try it and see.

Does Life ever bring those frustrating moments?  Sometimes I feel like I go from one frustrating moment to another. Then, other things that are usually easy, become difficult and Wham!…Life  just feels overwhelming and not much fun. What happens when we feel frustrated (along with her cousin anxiety) is the two parts of our autonomic nervous system become out of sync.  When the sympathetic division (responsible for our fight or flight zone in the brain in which is called upon for the sake of safety) and the  parasympathetic division (responsible for maintaining functions of the respiratory tract, ingestion and digestion and the disposal of wastes) are out of sync, is the signals in the nervous system are chaotic. It’s like driving a car with one foot of the gas pedal and one on the brake.  This makes for a jerky ride; burns more gas and wears out the car sooner.   So it is with our bodies and emotions, we tend to get frustrated more easily and often go into anxiety or anger. While it would be wonderful if we never had times of stress or frustration in our lives, we are going to encounter things that we do not like or that are out of our control.  Remember, it is not really the circumstances, but your perspective toward the circumstance and how that has put your nervous system out of sync. So, what do we do about it???    The people at HeartMath Research Center have been studying this for over 20 years.  I was delighted to learn some amazing techniques to deal with just his problem.

  • Become aware of how you feel about the situation at hand.  Admit to what you are feeling.  “I am frustrated and a little angry for spending 6 hours at the ER with my MIL and answering the same questions every 10 minutes.”  While I might wish I were a better person and not angry about this, acknowledging what I feel and naming it helps be to own it rather than just brush it off.
  • Slow down your breathing.  Breathe in for 5-6 seconds and out for 5-6 seconds.
  • Focus my breathing on my heart and breath in and out of my heart. (Yes, you are really breathing in your lungs first , but it has proven you can focus this breathing energy toward your heart.)
  • While still breathing ask yourself, “How would I like to feel?”   Compassion, love. joy, fun!
  • The more you focus on this new feeling, the more your nervous system becomes in sync and the more you can experience this desired feeling.
  • Express gratitude for this new feeling and for this moment in time.

Sounds too good to be true?  There is scientific evidence behind this!  It is a little challenging at first to get the habit, but gets easier the more you practice it.   So, give it a try and let me know how it works and lets leave frustration behind and life of gratitude. Another step in designing the life you have always wanted! Sonja

Good Grief Part Two!

Last month I wrote about he losses we have from friends and family who have left this world.  How important it is to grieve and accept the emotions as part of the process of life.  

We also have other losses in our life, while not as obvious, they never the less effect our life if not acknowledged and resolved.  Throughout our lives we have moves, we change jobs, we lose relationships- sometimes through hurt and sometimes just circumstances. Even good things in life- graduation, getting married- mean ending something else- being a student, being single.Even growing up and changing our outlook and opinions can produce a sense of loss. often overlook this truth.   What happens is when we go through life these losses add up, then a seemingly tiny loss (or a big one)  happens and we find ourselves overwhelmed in grief, and not understanding why.  This one loss has triggered feelings from all the other times we have glossed over and not acknowledged the pain.

What suggestions do I have here?  Glad you asked!

You don’t need to get bogged down in the mire with it.  Acknowledge the grief.  Start from a place of thankfulness.  What are you thankful for in this old situation/relationship etc.  Then,what can you be thankful for in the new situation. Sometimes writing these out or saying them outloud is better than just thinking them in your head over and over.  

Beware your identity- So often our identity is defined by where we  live, the job we have or even our relationships.  If our identity is being the daughter, then what do we do when our parent dies or even when we must change our role to being the caregiver and do the parenting to them.  We are not defined by our roles or location.  Even when you move and lose your support, you are still the same person.  Even if you have to adapt your outlook in your new life situation, you can do this without questioning who you are deep down.  Love yourself in the process and give yourself grace in this crazy journey of life!