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"10 Ways to Turn Negative Thoughts Into Positive Action"

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Coaching and Speaking

Coaching and Speaking

I can help you gain the courage to look at your roadblocks and create a path and a plan the gives you the confidence to make the changes you desire for your life. Through compassionate listening and proven strategies I will guide you to make those changes, one step at a time.

Published Works

Published Works

We are not able to change what happens to us, but we can change how we view it. Change Your Perspective, Change Your Life! is a collection of reflections focused on many of the life issues we all face. Each of the offerings is meant to inspire you, and help you see how you might make a positive difference in your own life.

Blog

Blog

Below are the three latest posts, click the image above to dive deep into them all. Sign up on the link above to receive the most current blog post plus other resources for living your best life.

 

The Power of Flexibility: Increasing Your Own Well-Being

If you think I am talking about how much you can bend or stretch your body, touch your toes or how much range of motion you have, you would be only partially right. The more flexible our body is, the better able we are to preform our everyday tasks with ease. As we age, we know that this is an important aspect that helps preform the things we want to do with less pain and discomfort.

Since we know that physical flexibility keeps us healthy, so does mental flexibility. By that I mean the ability to be able to consider many ways to overcome an obstacle, the ability and willingness to change how we think about things so that we can move from our old ways of thinking and doing things to embrace something new. All of us can get stuck in the way we have always done something but that seldom serves us well.

Most of the limits we have in life are self-imposed. We make and create ways of being that can keep us stuck in a pattern of behaving and thinking that does not serve us. Every time we do that, we limit our life. For example, I find that I like things in my house to be a certain way.  However, when family come to visit for an extended visit the house looks like a tornado hit it. I used to get crabby and upset that everything was in such a mess so I would focus my energy to restore order, missing the fun of enjoying my family. I had not realized how stuck I was in having to have things a certain way until I felt the discomfort of not being present for my family. When you look at your own places you might also see behaviors or thinking that have kept you stuck and not able to move forward. Especially as we get older, it is easier to say I just won’t do that anymore, rather than to look for ways that you can do what you want.

One of the most powerful tools that we have in our personal growth toolbox is the opportunity to change our perspective. In essence, with every obstacle before us, we can stay stuck where we are, or we have the opportunity to move forward: it is always up to us. In other words, change your perspective, change your life.

Keep in mind that we live in a faced paced world, so our ability to transform what we are given every moment is our greatest skill and most treasured asset. Learn to recognize the places where you have emotional discomfort and rather than accepting or fighting the feeling, take a moment to STOP and name what you are feeling and be grateful for the chance to change it. PAUSE to take some deep breaths and let yourself find a calm place where you can REFLECT. With a journal in hand or a piece of paper, make a list of what is happening in your life that is causing issues for you. Try your best to stay out of the story of what is happening by making the list as simple and true as you can. It is the story that we create that keeps us stuck more than the actual event.

When you are ready, TAKE A STEP. For each item on the list, ask yourself what you need to make a positive change. Ask yourself what mindset or perspective would help you take a small step forward and then do it.

When life happens, we must adjust our sails and find new ways to navigate our lives that will open us to possibility, rather than limiting what we can do or accomplish. It is so not so much about what are circumstances are now, but more about the mindset that anything can and does happen when we open ourselves to possibility.

I believe with each choice; we are making our own possibilities. Just remember, never underestimate the power of your choices, as they propel you forward or hold you back.

When choices are made from a place of what is possible, rather than limitations, we add energy to the process by creating many paths to reach the same place. I have found that each step taken, it leads to the next when er are open to what is possible, and that that can lead us to new ways of thinking and acting that will increase our overall well-being.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Success always Leaves Clues

One of the most important aspects of personal growth is the idea that success always leaves clues. When people talk about their success it is often in terms of how lucky they were, or they just happened to be in the right place at the right time. I have found from my years of working with people that they don’t often think about the role they played in achieving that success.

Just last week I was talking to my daughter-in-law about a big opportunity that had come her way, one she could never have imagined for herself. She also talked about being lucky, being in the right place at the right time, and knowing a few key people. However, she told me how this had come about it was evident that she had done action steps that put her in a position where this was a possibility.

Don’t get me wrong, I believe there is a lot to say about the synchronicity of how things come about: It just does not happen out of the blue, it happens because you have put yourself out there. Maybe you have taken a risk to do something that is out of your comfort zone or maybe you have been courageous in how you decided to take action or changed your attitude from negative to positive.  You somehow have put yourself in a position where you are open and ready to receive whatever the universe brings to you.

If you look back on something that you thought was just a “lucky fluke” I bet, you can see that you had done something to put yourself out there. My daughter in law that was courageously taking a chance on presenting at a conference. If she had not done that, the wonderful new opportunity would never have presented itself.

Since success indeed leaves clues, it is also true that failure also leaves clues. This is a little different and more damaging to our self-esteem. In this scenario, we blame ourselves for some shortcomings that we think we have. If we didn’t have this flaw, we would have succeeded.  Instead of looking at failure as some form of “not being good enough” it is far more beneficial to let it be okay to fail because it provides such great information.

When we believe we are at fault we just keep trying harder to make it work. The harder we try, the more we don’t succeed. When failure can be seen from the point of view that something did not work as planned, then looking at what went wrong, changing it, or deciding to do something different leads us closer to what we desire.

Have you ever seen someone make the mistake repeatedly whether it is in business or their personal life? I am very focused on the idea that if you want to change something in your life, you need to think and act differently. However, that is not always as easy as it sounds. Each of us has a lot of negative thoughts and emotions that get in the way. If we don’t take the time to get a handle on our mental clutter, we keep looking at life through the same lenses.

The most important thing that I like people to realize is that with every thought you think and every action you take, you are creating your life. And with every choice, you are either making your life bigger or shrinking it. We all have times when we do that but so often we do it unconsciously and we are living a limited life.

I have had the opportunity to study people’s choices for many decades and the accumulation of these choices and it is clear to see how it has affected people’s lives either positively or negatively.

We have this idea that we have very little control over our lives and life happens as it does. This can be a life-limiting belief and what would happen if we challenged that thought?  Life situations happen to us that we have no control over but we always can control how we react to them, and deciding our next choices is how we will continue to move forward and be resilient to what life brings us.  My question in any situation is: what can I learn from this. This is a crucial question of whether you are learning from your success or your failure.

I understand that I am standing on the outside observing what I see in people. This unique perspective helps me to make observations that a persona can’t see for themselves. Beginning to question what we do and why will open the perspective to be able to see things in a new way.

One way to do this is to have someone who you can talk to that will give you honest feedback. The other way is to realize there are always two or more right answers to a problem. So instead of doing what you have always done, consider there might be another way that would be better.

Remember, we have way more power and choice in our lives than we use. Begin to imagine if you exercised your power of choice of thoughts and actions regularly, how might the quality of your life be different? Knowing success leaves clues, what if you purposefully set yourself up for success in your thoughts in actions?  What if you decided that you were going to learn from your mistakes and do something different…what then?

Spring Clean-Up for Your Soul

Spring is a time for renewal, cleaning up, and cleaning out. It is time to enjoy the crocuses and smell the lilacs while listening to the birds sing and basking in the sun of longer days.

As much as I love everything that comes with spring there is also work to be done. My yard, I realize needs more than a little bit of TLC to bring it back to life after the long winter. Besides the outdoor clean-up, we also wage war on the inside of the house cleaning every inch, including closets, all so we can declare that the spring cleaning is done.

With that in mind, I’m wondering how many of you give yourselves some TLC? Just like our physical space our emotional space needs cleaning up and clearing out. So, the question becomes, what do I want to let go of, what do I want to change and what do I want to explore or start?

You might wonder how to go about even knowing what needs looking at. I suggest that you look at the places in your life that cause you dis-ease. Where do you feel stress, what have you been unable to change that you have wanted to and what relationship either with yourself or others is not what you would like? Making changes no matter how small they seem can make a huge impact on your well-being.

Everything around us changes whether we want it to or not and that includes our perceptions. That is how something that seemed right a one point in our life no longer feels right. It’s because something has changed and now causes us to feel uneasy or uncomfortable.  When we are not at ease with things in our life then our soul is out of harmony as well.

In general, people have a hard time letting go of things and especially emotions. However, we know that when we decide to purge our houses of excess stuff it is like a breath of fresh air and newfound energy. Imagine what that would be like to let go of fears, thoughts and beliefs are that no longer serve us. We usually hang on to them because we don’t know what it would be like to not have them.

My granddaughter comes to visit us each year for several weeks. She lives in Florida, and they often go to the theme parks. There were only a few rides she would ride because she was very afraid. So, when she came to Minnesota, we planned activities with this in mind. On one of our outings to Como Zoo, we walked by the roller coaster. She asked if we could stop and watch which she did for a long time before announcing she wanted to go on it. As you can imagine I was hesitant but she insisted, so I finally agreed.  Long story short, she rode that coaster at least 8 times that day. When I asked her why she decided to ride it she said simply, “I decided I did not want to be afraid anymore”.

I was not only stunned at how profound this declaration was from her but also the truth of it. What if we told ourselves the truth and then made the change needed, how profound would that be? Overcoming her fear that day was life-changing for her. Letting go of this fear has opened doors that went beyond being able to ride the biggest rides at the theme parks. What doors might open for you if you let go of fear?

We can learn a lot from our kids on how to be authentic and in harmony with the world around us rather than in opposition to it. The things that cause us stress dampen our soul and take a bite out of our spirit. That’s why spring clean-up for your soul is so important. The longer you hold on to what no longer works in your life, the harder it is to make a change. But if we can be in charge of letting go regularly the things that no longer serve us the more peace and harmony we will have in our lives.

I would encourage you to make self-discovery a part of your life. To take time to regularly to ask yourself these basic questions: What do I want to let go of, what do I want to change and what do I want to explore or start? Don’t try to change everything at once, but to pick one thing and begin to take a step in that direction and do it consistently. What you do every day is far more important that what you do occasionally. Small consistent steps will have a big impact. Imagine the breath of fresh air, the spring in your step and the energy in your soul as you move forward with renewed strength and purpose.