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4 posts from August 2012

August 28, 2012

Do No Harm: A Silly Platitude or a Much-Needed Guideline?

IStock_0womanandangrybossallIn my experience, both in the world and in my practice, one of the core places where men and women struggle is in the way they respond to conflict and upset.  Far too often, both men and women deal with upset by responding in the extreme.  They often yell, scream and control or they silence, placate and over-accommodate.  Naturally none of these moves is particularly helpful and all of them are often harmful.  Sometimes the person is the victim of harm (due to silently accepting poor treatment) and sometimes the person is the perpetrator of the harm (by aggressively responding to poor treatment).

I’m currently leading a teleclass titled “Finding Your GPS” (Grounded Powerful Strength).  A GPS is about walking in the world differently and at its core is the principle of Do No Harm.  Handling upset and conflict without doing harm seems almost unheard of today.  Whether it’s countries at war, politicians fighting during an election, couples trying to heal from an affair or bosses reprimanding their employees, people have given themselves the green light to harm one another.  It’s as though, in the heat of the moment, “anything goes.” 

Below are a few examples of what I’m talking about:

•    Politicians bad-mouthing one another for the purpose of increasing their chances of getting elected.
•    Spouses yelling, screaming, name-calling and even throwing things due to discovering an affair.
•    Countries hunting a leader down and killing him in retaliation for that leader killing others.
•    Friends bad-mouthing one another in response to gossip.
•    and on and on…

Continue reading "Do No Harm: A Silly Platitude or a Much-Needed Guideline? " »

August 21, 2012

Dating Advice For Those Looking For A Life Partner

IStock_0happycouplellThere are many reasons people date --  for occasional company, to see what’s out there ,to have a little fun, to meet new people, etc.  Some women, though, are dating to find a good guy with whom to share their life.

For those of you looking for someone to share your life with, the rules of dating are different.  If you play by the “fun” rules, but you’re looking for “serious,” you’re likely to be disappointed…at best.  Know what your dating goal is and then be smart about your actions.

Below are several rules for those looking for a more lasting relationship.  Don’t skimp on these rules or you’re likely to pay the price down the road.  Remember that great relationships start at the first hello.
1.    Be the chooser, NOT the choosee.  Be yourself, not whom you think your date wants you to be.  Too many women dress as they think they should, speak as they believe the other person wants them to speak and share what they believe the other person wants to hear.  This is a recipe for disaster if you’re looking for a lasting relationship.  It’s way too hard to keep up that charade for the rest of your life, so don’t set it up.  Be yourself and trust that you will attract the partner who is right for you.
2.    Be honest, not deceptive.  Don’t answer questions in a way that is deceptive.  Be honest in your answers, even if you think your answer is not what the other person wants to hear.  I’ve worked with women who told men they wanted children because they knew that was important to the men, even though they actually had no interest in having children.  They figured if they could get the man to fall in love with them, then the children wouldn’t be that important.  Are you kidding me?  That is deceptive and not fair.  If you expect honesty from the people in your life, then you owe them the same courtesy.  Be honest and let the chips fall where they may. 

Continue reading "Dating Advice For Those Looking For A Life Partner" »

August 13, 2012

Learn To Say “No”

IStock_0NOMany women have a hard time saying, “No.”  This is true regardless of whether we’re talking about saying no to their boss, co-worker, lover or friend.  The struggle happens for countless reasons.  Women worry about being seen as mean, getting into an argument, losing a relationship, upsetting someone or even losing a job.  In response to these fears women often end up saying yes when they want to say no, over-accommodating or placating the people in their lives.

It is a short walk from over-accommodating to the eventual loss of self. 

Saying no is vital to relationships.  If we can’t say no, then our yes is not a yes—instead it becomes a begrudging “have to.”  As you can imagine, the constant yeses eventually lead to a lot of resentment, possible depression and likely unhappiness. Almost always agreeing to things -- in relationships and in life -- comes at a high cost to the self.  Healthy relationships require a healthy, “No.”

Below are five tips to help you strengthen your self-care muscles and your ability to say, “No,” when you need to:
1.    Take space before you answer.  When someone asks you to do something, get into the habit of buying yourself some time.  Women often say yes out of habit, so you have to slow down that knee-jerk reaction of agreement.  Simply say, “Oh, let me look at my schedule and I’ll get back to you.”  Or, “Hmmm, I’m not sure I can do that.  Let me think about it and I’ll call you tomorrow.”  If possible, give yourself 24 hours before responding.

Continue reading "Learn To Say “No”" »

August 08, 2012

Lessons Learned From The 2012 Summer Olympics

IStock_0OlympicmedalsallIt has been amazing to watch such talented athletes compete at the 2012 Olympics.  It’s hard to believe that there’s an athlete as young as 13 years of age and another athlete as old as 71 years of age competing (http://tinyurl.com/9uufw6n).  I know when I was 13, I was nowhere near mature enough to handle the pressures of being an Olympic athlete.  Kudos to all the athletes for their hard work, dedication and utter determination to do whatever is necessary to make their dream come true.

Below are several life lessons I learned from watching these amazing athletes compete.  I would love to hear about the lessons that stood out for you, as well, so please share.

1.    Success takes hard work.  Each and every one of the athletes put countless hours of hard work into honing their craft.  Many of these athletes, in fact, devoted their lives to their dream of making it to the Olympics.  Too often, many of us think that we shouldn’t have to work that hard to be successful, earn money, have a loving relationship, etc.  The reality is that very few things in life come easily.  If you want something badly enough, then you must be willing to do the hard work to make it happen. 
2.    Life is not always fair.  US gymnast, Jordyn Wieber, did not make the all-around competition because a maximum of two gymnasts per team can qualify.  Twenty-four gymnasts made that competition, twenty-one of whom had scores lower than Jordyn’s.  Unfair?  Absolutely.  But life is unfair.  What differentiates those who succeed from those who don’t, however, is the way they handle the blow.  Jordyn handled it with class and didn’t allow this decision to take her out of the rest of the competition.
3.    Mistakes are to be expected.  Many, if not all, of the athletes made or will make mistakes throughout their Olympic journey.  Although they are the best of the best, they are also human.  Mistakes are a part of life.   No matter how good we are at something or how hard we try, we will always make mistakes.  Imperfection is simply part of our humanity.  
4.    Mistakes are an opportunity to learn.  A key factor that sets the good athletes apart from the great athletes is their ability to recover from their mistakes.  Michael Phelps bounced back from a fourth place finish and an overall rough start (for him ) in his final Olympic games by going on to win four gold and two silver medals.  Even after he won the gold, he talked about how he could have improved his turn in the final lap.  In sports -- and in life -- the better we are at looking at our mistakes, owning them and learning from them, the more successful we become.
5.    What the mind believes, the body achieves.  The most successful athletes in the Olympic games believe in themselves.  They know they have what it takes to win.  They don’t tell themselves everyone else is better.  They believe.  In life, too many people don’t believe in themselves, know that they are worthy or stand behind themselves no matter what.  When we believe in ourselves and know we deserve great lives, we will make that dream happen. 

These athletes are no different than you or I.  They are human beings.  They make mistakes.  They have days when they doubt themselves and they have moments when life throws them a curve ball. 

What sets them apart is how they handle the ups and downs of life.  The top athletes have trained themselves to recover from the curve balls, to learn from their mistakes and to fight for a dream with such passion that it is almost impossible for them to fail. 

If you want to succeed in life, relationships, sports or your career, take a lesson from the Olympians: “What the mind believes, the body achieves.”

Challenge: What lesson do you need to work on?  Choose one and passionately work it.  Notice what happens.
 

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