Listening To Your Life

I was born in 1950 and country grown, outside of Pittsburgh, where I naturally went deep. The space program was a big deal when I was 12 years old but I can clearly remember it not holding a lick of interest for me.

I was into digging and dirt. I built dams in farmer’s streams. My buddies and I built earthen forts and tried tunneling. One of the best stand-by-me adventures was following a gas line excavation for miles, all day long.

At 12, I took my first job on a farm and my love for gardening grew from there. I worked on the farm for 5 years and loved every bit of it but I especially loved digging up spuds and stacking the wooden crates high in cool, dimly lit storage rooms.

When I was 17, I took a job going deeper into the earth and worked with a backhoe operator installing sewer pipes. I loved carrying those 80 lb. terra cotta sections and jumping in and out of ditches. Can you see the developing theme? Can you see what my life was trying to tell me, even then?

At 19, on summer break from college, I worked as a United Mine Worker in a deep shaft coal mine.

I wasn’t looking for any of these opportunities. They appeared one after the other, as guidance, to write my future life script.

Fast-forward 40 years. Eleven years ago, I was thinking about a name for my new coaching business. I called it Coresight, soon after changed to CoreU. I named it so because I loved getting to the root of deep, messy, emotional issues with my clients and I still do.

Business start up success is always more predicated on an inner game than on the influence of any outside conditions. That’s one reason why every entrepreneur must be able to read his or her own inner landscape.

When I was naming my career coaching company, I hadn’t yet made the connection to those earlier life experiences where I dug going deep so much. It became relevant, years later, when I first read Parker Palmer’s book, Let Your Life Speak.

He proved to me that my soul, my inner wisdom, guidance from the highest and best part of my being has always been trying to nudge me in the direction of my true calling.

But these calling nudges, (like they often are), were not meant to be taken literally but as a metaphor for my life’s work.

Guess what my friend? Your life has been speaking to you as well. Are you listening?

Clients often ask, “Where will the confidence come from for me to make my best career change? Confidence comes from being able to read the signs and follow your life message. You don’t need a past life psychic to guide you. Your life has been giving you real time hints all along.

But you do need to sort out the authentic nudges from all of the “outside-in” messages and I have a way for you to do that. You could write your autobiography using appreciative inquiry.

You can reclaim the wisdom in your life hints by recalling what has worked well for you over the years. If you want a free guide write me and tell me why you think this approach will work for you.

If enough readers are interested, I’ll facilitate a free class on how to interpret your autobiography to see the most telling themes. This approach is one of dozens I use to guide clients to the powerful position of self-understanding and now you can have it for the asking.

It’s all there waiting to guide you and it always has been. Isn’t it time you listened to your own life?

Beliefs Are Bad For Business

Beliefs are sneaky.  Beliefs influence our ability and restrict opportunities often without us even being aware that we have them.  It’s a sound business practice to frequently examine and question your beliefs.

Beliefs can limit flexibility and openness while promoting rigidity.  Rigidity tends to limit opportunity.  Incredibly we often believe things for which we have no proof, especially when it comes to matters of self-assessment.

Belief is putting regard in something as true. This wide range of synonyms astounded me because they all can be used to describe a belief even though they inspire quite different meaning strength.

Synonyms: acceptance, admission, assent, assumption, assurance, avowal, axiom, certainty, conclusion, confidence, conjecture, conviction, credence, credit, deduction, divination, expectation, faith, fancy, feeling, guess, hope, hypothesis, idea, impression, intuition, judgment, knowledge, mind, mindset, notion, opinion, persuasion, position, postulation, presumption, presupposition, profession, reliance, supposition, surmise, suspicion, theorem, theory, thesis, thinking, trust, understanding, view.

Some beliefs can seem very flimsy, especially when we think of a belief as an assumption, a guess, a notion or merely a feeling.

But that’s how all beliefs take root.  We hear someone say something or read it and we assume it to be true.  A statement can be made about your own capacity or about business in general and you could lose out because of your belief in that statement.

Anyone and everyone occasionally can get down on herself or himself.  The good news is that we don’t have to get down and stay there.  Worrying about beliefs is wasteful.  It’s far more productive to use language and questioning to challenge our limiting beliefs.

Worry is an abuse of imagination.  Steve Chandler

Of course not all beliefs are limiting or negative some can be very inspiring.  But even positive beliefs can be limiting.  It makes me question whether we’d be better off without beliefs at all. Would it really matter if we just experienced life in the moment as it comes?

Here are some empowering questions to challeneg and refresh your beliefs.

What do I believe that does not serve me well about my business or myself?

Can I point to proof that supports this belief?

What would I rather believe?

What do I want to believe about my business or myself?

What could I do now to create what I want?

What limiting beliefs would I be better off simply letting go?

What one thing am I creating that uplifts me?

How could I increase my willingness to start fresh with a beginners mind and boldly create that thing?

How To Extract Your Waiting Wisdom

You are smarter, more capable and far better off than you think you are, but only when you decide to connect to your deep well of waiting wisdom within. istock_000003366515xsmall

Your greatest wisdom exists deep within because as you age layer upon layer of false assumptions, comparisons, judgments and the opinions of others are piled on top of it. For an exploration of this nature you need the proper excavation tools to dig past all of that outside junk.

Yet your beautiful, powerful mind is so protective of past conclusions that you have to resort to trickery so that your conscious mind can step back and allow your inner wisdom to emerge.

The key to authentic business building is to operate more and more consciously and less and less mechanically.

When we look to others to supply our wisdom we are often in misalignment with our own original potential.  By going deep and extracting your own wisdom you automatically have increased the probability of success.

My greatest service as a life coach, coaching new business owners is selecting the right tools to guide the inner journey so that my clients can find and express their authentic selves.

The right tool will facilitate high performance by raising self-understanding, self-esteem and personal effectiveness. This allows us to access wisdom and other resources that normally remain hidden from our consciousness. Without digging deep this wisdom does not normally show up in our behavior.

One of the most powerful tools I use in this work is sentence stem completion.  I first read about it in Nathaniel Branden’s book The Six Pillars of Self Esteem.  Sentence stem completion is most effective as a tool to facilitate understanding, liberate self-expression and activate self-healing.

Sentence stem completion rests on he premise that all of us have more knowledge than we are normally aware of – more wisdom than we use, more potentials than typically show up in our behavior. Sentence completion is a tool for accessing and activating these “hidden resources.”  When we intensify awareness, we tend to generate a need for action that expresses our changed psychological state.  Nathaniel Branden

Sentence Stem Completion Instructions

1). Begin with an uncompleted sentence stem in the area of your exploration. Here are some possibilities that have served my clients well.

If I really wanted to achieve this goal  …
When I apply 10% more consciousness to my activities …
If I truly wanted to create my own unique product I’d …
My most powerfully productive business decision this quarter would be to …

2). Repeat the stem each time out loud and then jot down the completion. Some feel more comfortable working with a tape recorder and then going back and transcribing. It’s the speed and lack of self-judgment that lowers repressive barriers and allows the wisdom to emerge. This is a rapid-fire exercise — do not sit and stew over answers. Just say the stem and complete the sentence as rapidly as possible. No pauses, the game is to answer quickly one after another. Don’t worry about the validity of what you’re coming up with while you’re doing it. Just complete each sentence and then again.

3). For each sentence stem keep adding completions as fast as possible. Work with the same stems for seven days in a row. No pauses to think in between. Just write. Each stem must be a complete sentence. Stems may be repeated on different days but on any one day, all stems need to be different. Complete at least six endings for each stem, each day.

4). At the end of the week reflect on what you’ve written. Allow yourself to be surprised about what you’ve written.  At the end of seven days look at all of your completions and select the top three you are willing to act on. This wisdom may need further refinement but it will beat the root of your most optimum and effective actions.

Here’s the good news.  The wisdom you seek is seeking you.  Your internal guidance has been trying to get your attention to shine a light on your optimum path.  You willingness to go deep and bring it forth will definitely accelerate the process.

Wisdom serves as widening of perception and somehow allows us to see situations and intentions in a new light.

This new light expands possibilities so we don’t jump to limiting conclusions based on past experience.  Instead we are emboldened to create our very own brave new world.

Starting Over

starting overStarting over at any age is more than possible. I get occasional emails from desperate readers who think they have totally screwed up their lives.  They think they can’t afford to hire me as their coach but they reach out, hoping for help.

I’ll often ask them to do something simple, like read a blog post and email me back what came up for them.  Or I’ll send them a couple of questions by email.  But rather than just answering the damn questions – they’ll write back telling some pathetic story about why they can’t start over.  Bull! Starting over is really your only choice.

It really doesn’t matter how far you’ve fallen or how long you’ve been down.  I know.  I’ve hit bottom and we can always wipe the slate clean and make a fresh start. Always.  At any notch, on the way down, I could have decided to stop there and start over.  I’ve written this post for everyone who thinks it’s too late to create the life or business you most want.

What if there was only one universal truth and all we had to do was get busy following that simple message?

Would you follow this message?

Starting Over

Be yourself.  Stay present.  Trust yourself.  Take frequent action.  Start over.

What if you didn’t need to know anymore than you know right now in order to turn your life around?

What if you are already brilliant enough and equipped enough to get what you want?

What if you already know what you need to know to make your best move?

What if you’ve repeatedly made the right decision but for some reason you’ve second-guessed yourself and needlessly stopped short of action?

You are closer than you think you are.  You’re almost over the hump.  Starting over is always a matter of being present and letting go of the past. Your desire is telling you where you need to go and most likely you just need to be bolder sooner while going for it.

Just because there appears to be a lot of folks selling you how-to and what-to-do, you don’t have to buy it.  Often they only know what’s best for them.

You are the best source of your own wisdom.

For a couple of weeks now I’ve been thinking about this commonly shared story about the gold rushes.  There is a mini series showing right now called Klondike that illustrates my point. History shows that more folks got wealthy by selling pans, lumber, shovels, sex, booze and supplies, to the seekers of riches, than those who actually struck it rich.

This story is now told to illustrate the wisdom for becoming a how-to-get-rich info marketer.  The promise is, by selling books, audios, videos and memberships sites, that teach others how to get rich, you’ll get rich.

Like many of you, I’ve been intrigued by the possibility of online riches.  In the past, I’ve shelled out my bucks for all kinds of “can’t miss” info-products and deals.

But here’s why I’ve been questioning this modern day gold rush.  I think, just like the original, it may be a business model based on illusion.  An illusion based business model is one that sells more hope than substance.  Am I nuts or is this really closer to the truth?

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We say we like connecting, expressing and media socializing, but how much of this would we be doing, if we didn’t think that it would lead us to finding online gold?

I go back and forth on how best to claim online gold.  I question the value of social media frequently, yet I’m still using it, so I’m not judging any method.  If anything I’m confused as hell as to where it’s all going?  But I’ve learned that confusion often signals opportunity.

I do know this; when I stake my own claim, in this online gold rush, I’ll only sell a how-to system that helps you to express and promote your own uniqueness. That’s the best shot we all have at riches.

Your best shot at riches is to express your authentic uniqueness.

I’ll only sell what I and my clients have proven. That’s why I’m such an advocate for life coaching. Coached people more often create the lives and businesses they want to create. Coached people take more action so they fail and succeed faster, sooner.

Those who think they can go it alone without a mentor or coach are the really crazy ones.

Coaching works because it respects and honors individuality.  Any coach worth his or her fee will help you to take action swiftly and do it your way in a way that promotes your uniqueness.

Some of what I know will work for you and some won’t.  It’s my job as coach, to create the structure and environment that will have you repeatedly choosing, acting, failing and adjusting.

Fail faster better.

Fail more often and you increase the probability of succeeding.  Get to a place of not giving a chit about the outcomes and you’ll try more things.  Try more things and you’ll increase the probability of stumbling on something that works.  How’s that for certainty?

It doesn’t’ matter how often you fail and have to start over.  What does matter is that you do start over. Starting over is your new lease on life. Jump in and enjoy.

Start over. Be yourself.   Stay present.  Trust yourself.  Take frequent action.   Start over.

Contact me here to for a free starting over session to find your aliveness.

How To Get On The Right Track

Being on track feels flat out exhilarating!  I’m talking about those vigorously inspiring times when you know you’re on the right track.   That knowing has been gradually building within me and I want to help you find it as well.  istock_000004985695xsmall

The seeds were planted in these posts where I wrote about doubling your income and getting rich authentically.  Since then I’ve been living with this question.

What is the question that if you knew the answer, would set you free? Peter Block

A powerful question  hangs in there with you when you feed it by continuing to ask it.

By asking the right question and acting on the answers, we earn the clarity to see the right track.

Successful business building is not an exact science.  Opportunities present themselves in unexpected ways.  Discoveries and realizations often occur in the pursuit of other objectives.

There is no “one right way” to accomplish business objectives.  There is only the way that works for you.

Success in business and life is primarily an inside game, because our inner feelings and thoughts determine our decisions and actions.

Five Signposts to Find Your Right Track

1). Are you giving it your all?

Can you tell when you’re stretched to do your best?  It’s often said that given the circumstances, we are all doing the best we can.

We all do the best we can, but only to the degree that we are aware and willing to improve.

When we become aware but don’t act, we have become unwilling and afraid; willing and courageous works better.

2). Is there a more direct way to get what you want?

As a community builder, I enjoy connecting on various social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.  Yet each of us needs to determine what the hell we’re doing there!  For what purpose are we connecting?  If your aim is to get new clients, fear may be guiding you to take the long way around.

Where might fear be guiding you on offtrack?

3). Are you truly open to seeing new approaches and perspectives?

If what you’re doing isn’t working, it’s time for some raw truth and fresh direction.

The most successful people are those who are good at plan B.  James Yorke

My most successful coaching clients, bounce back from disappointment sooner and look for different openings more often.  But often, we can’t see our own blind spots.

We can’t see what we’ve never considered possible.  That’s one reason why coaching works so well, because the process naturally expands possibilities and new- found considerations.

Most likely your way out, is not what you think it is.  The answer you seek could be within you and probably is.  Yet if you’re off track the answer will not be what you first think it is.

If you change the way you look at things the things you look at change.  Wayne Dyer

4). Are you too much in your own head?

Life coaching clients often come looking for the cure to perfectionism, procrastination and distraction.  If you’re over-thinking a fearful future, you’re clearly avoiding the now.

But exactly what “now” are you avoiding?  You may be wiser than you think you are.

Perhaps you dance with these maladies because you know deep within that the actions you’re avoiding are fruitless endeavors.

Perhaps the knowing part of you is aware that by following-through, you’ll create something that’s not aligned with your authentic desires.

5). Have you found your personal updraft?

If you aren’t energized and eager for your work, you need all the raw truth you can handle; and believe me, you can handle a lot.

What’s the big decision you just aren’t making?  What do you need to wake up to, in order to make a fresh start?

Where in your life are you explaining away your piss poor performance and results?  Dang, can’t you see that life is meant to be a joyful glide?

If results aren’t coming easily, at least some of the time, then you’ve chosen a path that requires greater effort to push through the resistance.  There’s always a more optimum path.

Yesterday I was reading about golden eagles that winter in West Virginia and summer in Canada.  They migrate along the mountain ridges in Pennsylvania to take advantage of very distinct, airborne pathways with buoyant updrafts.

This allows them to soar and glide with little effort.  But those eagles had to find and choose the right track for them.

Either you will make your life work or your life will not work. Nathaniel Branden

Your business can also be more of a joyful glide, by getting on the right track for you.  It’s there; keep choosing until you find it.

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Ready to find the shortcut to your right track?  Contact me today for a sample coaching session that will knock your socks off!

Personal Relationships and Business Support

Solo entrepreneurship can be a lonely journey and if you have a non-supportive spouse or significant other, it can feel even lonelier. Lately I’ve seen a greater number of brand new small business owners, who feel as though they are all on their own, even though they are in relationship.  Conflict between the man and the woman

Even if you are not presently in a personal partnership you may feel the need to seek relationship support from close friends and family members. In either case you may be been surprised by what appears to be the lack of unconditional support.

When I was building an entrepreneurial business 14 years ago, I was married with two young teenagers. During the business development stage, I was working over 70 hours weekly and telling myself the classic workaholic’s lie. “I’m doing it for them.”

It might make you feel better to rationalize your non-supportive behavior, but if you are anything like I was, deep within, you understand that being an absentee spouse and parent is not doing anything for them. Furthermore, you are mostly doing it for you and it’s okay to admit that truth.

If you need relationship help now, you’ll still need it while building your business but then there will even more pressure on all fronts. Everyone is familiar with a couple that tried to solve their relationship problems by having a baby. Did it work for the couple you knew? No? Then why would birthing a new business improve your relationship?

Here’s another big lie.

It’s not personal, it’s only business.  Donald Trump

Everything is personal! When Trump and others use that line, they are only trying to justify less than human behavior.

You and the actions you take are the main reason why your business succeeds or fails. If your life sucks then your business results will suck.

If you have weak personal relationships that drain your energy, then your focus will be lacking. Without a strong focus, your decision-making, personal productivity and inspired actions will all suffer.

If you don’t have strong spousal support or unconditional support in your close relationships, you first need to understand them from their perspective.

When a life partner cautiously advises you not to venture out on your own, they are not questioning your ability or resolve to succeed.

They are only speaking from the perspective of their own fears.

They could fear having less time with you. Your initiative could be forcing them to face their own fears of success, of failure or of never being authentically fulfilled in their work. And of course they could be thinking about having less money and how that affects the household budget.

Good personal relationships are essential to making good business decisions. If you are fighting battles both at home and in the marketplace, you will lose on both fronts.

My first coaching  certification was in relationship building and more and more it’s my relationship coaching skills that come into play first, with my small business clients.
If you’re considering starting a small business, first repair or end non-supportive relationships.

You might enjoy these tips for a confident career change.

Remember this brilliance in the face of relationship problems.

I’m never upset for the reasons I think I am.  Eckhart Tolle

What relationship challenges do you need to understand greater, in order to build your business with less resistance?

What adjustments need to be made in your relationship with you, so that you are more grounded and your business is more supported?

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Support Resource:

Request a free Confidently Make the Leap, strategy session to get really clear on how and when to make your move.


Speak Up – Silence Makes You Poor

We must stand tall and speak up or our silence will make us poor. Money is attracted to confidence. Attractive confidence is the direct connection between authenticity and financial prosperity. istock_000001684995xsmall1

We naturally feel more confident when we are speaking our mind in full authentic expression.  Every time we allow fear to silence our authentic expression, we poke little holes in our personal integrity and erode our confidence.

Often we are given opportunities to right a wrong, clear up a misunderstanding, enhance a relationship or express true feelings, but instead we take the easy way out, by putting up with what we could change.

I’m a big believer in accepting what is. But we can also be smart and remove ourselves from the presence of people and situations that are not good for us.

It’s essential to identify and eliminate situations that we needlessly tolerate.

Let’s define tolerations as things that bug us, sap our energy, and could be eliminated!  There’s a small payoff to carrying tolerations – you get to feel kind of noble about your burdens and your forbearance. But, believe me, it’s a very expensive source of self-esteem.

Tolerations are holes in your personal success cup; they drain away your contentment and good fortune.  They drain YOU.  They make you feel less attractive to yourself.

Tolerations often represent compromises you’ve talked yourself into.  Thomas Leonard

Leonard included physical clutter and all kinds of limbo projects in his master list of tolerations.  Most of you have felt the tremendous resurgence of energy that comes simply from cleaning a closet or an office.  My coaching clients and I have experienced even greater relief and enlivening from taking a stand and expressing it.  It’s your turn.

What unresolved situations or unmade decisions have you avoided dealing with repeatedly?

Which of your relationships is more energy draining than inspiring?

Where are you withholding being totally forthright, because you fear the consequences, even though you know that you’re out of integrity by remaining silent?

Where do you resist telling the whole truth to yourself, about yourself?

Make your list, select one, face it and fix it permanently. Then cross it off and feel the rush of authentic expression.

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For those in Pittsburgh this week, Tom is speaking on Thursday, 1-29, noon, at the Carnegie Business Library on Wood St.  The topic is: Is Self-Employment Right for You?

Pump Up Your Personal Power

I was eleven years old, watching The Three Stooges, on a fall afternoon.  I heard a loud insistent knock at the back door and, upon opening it, I saw my neighbor, Little Larry, all out of breath and crying.  A hunter mistakenly shot his dog Lobo.  Lobo was suffering and needed help.

Larry’s family didn’t own a gun and he knew that my Dad did.  But I was the only one home and I had played with Lobo.  I was torn and afraid and I didn’t want to do it. I just wanted to cry like Larry was, or run from the responsibility.  The last thing I wanted to do was to feel my feelings.
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Struggling small business owners often ask, “What’s wrong with me?”  It’s really easy to fall into the trap of self-judgment when things don’t turn out as planned.  It can be especially frustrating when it seems as though many others are succeeding.

But, what if there is nothing inherently wrong with you?  What if you have the capacity to succeed in business but you’re not fully using your personal power?

It’s not a question of your makeup; you have what it takes to succeed. But what if you are not giving it your all?  You might think you are, but if you’re holding back on feeling your feelings fully, then you’re operating at a fraction of your available personal power.  Decide to hold back no more – direct all of your personal power for life and business success.

In my life coaching practice, I’ve coached many men and a few women who did everything they could to avoid feeling negative emotions.  Once we do some digging, the memory of a major childhood trauma often surfaces.  Some clients have avoided feeling feelings for 30 years or more.  Some hurt so badly that they refuse to even discuss it.

Yet they can’t confidently express the personal power necessary to be a successful entrepreneur, while still holding back on their feelings.

My authentic business success did not fully happen, until I changed back into the championship feeler that I once was.  Authenticity can be your edge for business success. But it’s impossible to be fully authentic if you aren’t feeling everything.

Back to Lobo, up until that time, I wore my emotions on my sleeve.  If you hurt, me I cried.  If something scared me, I cried.  If I was embarrassed or ashamed about something, I cried.  Back then, when the emotions arose, I felt them naturally and then felt better.

But growing up in the macho fifties, that presented a big problem.  Every adult male in my life, including my Dad, told me to “quit crying, suck it up and be a man.”

This was in the country, in 1961, and people just didn’t spend money on veterinarians.  Larry knew that the merciful thing to do was to end Lobo’s suffering.  I agreed, but my Dad wasn’t home.  Then something clicked in my eleven-year-old mind.  I saw this as an opportunity to take the advice of my Dad, uncles, and male teachers.  I needed to suck it up and be a man.

Suddenly I knew what I had to do.  I got the shotgun and a shell out of the closet and walked down over the hill with Larry.  It was hard looking at Lobo and knowing that I was ending his life.  We’d played and run together many times.

But I sucked it up and I did it.  And I can remember walking back up the hill to my house as clear as it was yesterday.  A tearful feeling began deep in my chest, and just when it was at throat level and about to explode, I stopped it.

I swallowed my feelings and locked them up in some dark well.  I sucked it up.  I was a man.  I didn’t shed another tear for 38 years and I hated it.  I was stone-faced miserable and more afraid than when I freely cried.

If you’re a guy that’s buying that same bull, or if you know a guy (or gal) who is, please take this message to heart. You won’t really be a strong man or woman until you learn to feel all of your feelings, as they arise.

How?  First understand the benefits of feeling fully.  That understanding will help you to want to feel.  Then you need a process that will work for you.  There is none better than John Gray’s process in his book, How to Get What You Want and Want What You Have .

I’ve recommended it dozens of times in my life coaching practice and it almost always gets my clients feeling once again. It’s effective because it gives us a powerful way to first feel what’s there. Then after feeling it, we can choose something that feels better.

In Chapter 11, Gray shares this list of 12 negative emotional states.
1. “I am angry.”
2. “I am sad.”
3. “I am afraid.”
4.  “I am sorry.”
5. “I am frustrated.”
6. “I am disappointed.”
7. “I am worried.”
8.“I am embarrassed.”
9.“I am jealous.”
10. “I am hurt.”
11. “I am scared.”
12. “I am ashamed.”

These states are expertly listed, in a special order such that even if you don’t immediately, correctly identify which emotion you’re feeling, the process will correct your course in mid-stream.

This process uses journaling, which is a very effective method for feeling and releasing negative emotions.  I’ve personally found it to be highly effective and it’s what got me unstuck from the lingering affects of a major life wound.

Begin at the emotional state where you think you are and really feel it.

In each case, as you go down the list, you will experience a dramatic shift and release by going deeper.  Write a few minutes about any one level, and then shift to the next level down. At the end of the process, it is important to write out the positive feelings that naturally emerge after we release negative emotions. John Gray

Negative feelings begin as naturally occurring vibrations; they don’t become negative until we have attached a thought to them.

Everything in our lives, we create, promote or allow. Author Unknown

Everything! Wow, do you find that quote as inspiring as I do. That means we are at choice about everything in our lives. For everything, we make it up, advance it further or permit its presence.

“Everything” includes even the feelings we feel.  We can choose to allow or release our negative feelings.

We can also choose to pump up our personal power by creating positive feelings after we’ve released the negative.
We are all challenged from time to time, but true champions, learn to fully feel, process the emotions and return to rise again.

Are you operating a full personal power or are you still holding back?

 

Time to Walk Away?

One of the most challenging aspects of career transitioning from work that feels like work, to work that you love, is temporarily letting go of the money. It’s just as challenging, when you’re already self-employed and transitioning from an established income stream to one that’s more delightful but temporarily less lucrative.

Even long-time proponents of authentic work can go for the easy money in moments of temporary insanity. I’ve clearly known my core values since 1998 yet just 18 months ago I lost my mind and made a decision unaligned with my values to pick some low hanging fruit. It paid well for a while and I told myself that I’d just work it a few hours a week until I built up a financial reserve. But a funny thing happened, even though financially, my overall situation improved, I began to resent the source of this windfall. I wrestled with myself for months and could not come to a satisfactory decision. So as it often does, life provided a decision for me. I had many less-costly opportunities to let go but I did it the hard way because the fear of letting go was greater than the unknown good on the horizon.

I’m writing about this now because of a comment on my last post on Honoring Commitments from fellow self-employed blogger Cath Lawson. Be sure to visit her blog, for some bold and wise business advice.

Here are the relevant parts of Cath’s comment.
Hi Tom, I’ve been thinking about this a lot recently. One of the main reasons I struggle to honour my commitments sometimes, is that I’ll let one horrid task overwhelm me to the point I won’t look at my to do list. It’s something I’m really struggling with. I think I really need to work on getting over the horrid task thing. Most of the ones I dread are connected to a past business. And I think it’s the connections I have the problem with, as opposed to the actual task.

Did you grasp the meaning in her comment? It’s not the tasks that Cath dreads doing but the emotional connections to those tasks. Often when we make a career transition there is residual fallout. There’s stuff we think we need to hang onto and cleanup because it appears to make good business and financial sense. But we all know that appearances can be tricky.

I’m not sure if this is the case in Cath’s situation because I haven’t coached her on it but it certainly was the case in mine. Sometimes it’s better to walk away and forget trying to get over something. Sometimes a clean break is the soundest financial decision.

Once my unaligned decision began to feel like an obligation I should have eaten my losses and made a clean break. That’s what my inner guidance was telling me but I was holding on only for the money and that’s a decision that’s doomed to failure. This once lucrative cash stream became what Thomas Leonard called a toleration.

When you put up with something, it costs you; unnecessary costs are unattractive. Let’s define tolerations as things that bug us, sap our energy and could be eliminated! Tolerations drain you. They make you feel less attractive to yourself. Thomas Leonard

In his excellent book, The Portable Coach: 28 Sure Fire Strategies For Business And Personal Success, Leonard goes on to explain that we unknowingly install tolerations to slow down our personal growth because when we slow down, we are less frightened. However putting up with anything that we could do something about is damaging to our emotional and spiritual well-being. Often we are turning our back on our own inner guidance because we don’t feel ready to make a clean break from a less than authentic past. Yet every time we ignore our own inner guidance it’s like poking a hole in our soul.

How perforated is your soul these days?

What are you putting up with that you could let go of?

Where have you ignored repeated opportunities to make a clean break?

Are you holding on somewhere, just for the money?

If you are, you may want to ask yourself. “What’s the total cost of this ongoing emotional wrestling match? Might the actual cost of walking away now be less?”

How To Start Over

Starting Over Do you know how to start over so it takes this time? An important part of your life or business is crying out for a fresh new start. There’s something magically freeing about wiping the slate clean and beginning new again – but we often waste that magic by stopping short of completion.

Some question their inherent capabilities after repeatedly failing to produce a desired result. Yet life coaching has taught me that there is nothing wrong with you, your capabilities or with starting over. What’s usually lacking is the faulty process that you’ve used. After this five-minute read you’ll know an effective process for starting over and successfully completing.

A fresh start comes ready made with fresh hope that this time things will turn out better and they will, if you’ll use this process that focuses your fresh start energy for maximum advantage.

Many folks attempt geographical fresh starts. Others get excited with the newness of a fresh relationship. Some get their kicks from cracking open a crisp new book. At least half of us have started diets and exercise programs dozens of times. With every fresh start we blindly hope that this time will be different. By why should it? A fresh start alone doesn’t guarantee different results.

Increased awareness while working this how to start over process will produce different results. The necessary ingredients are awareness, commitment, action, frequency, redemption and completion. Answer the question(s) next to the ingredient to work this process.

1) Awareness. What part of my life would most benefit from a totally fresh start? What realizations have I come to from my previous attempts in this area? If I’ve truly learned these lessons, then what do I intend to do differently this time?
2) Commitment. Why is the decision to commit to this change the most important commitment I’m making this month? (If it’s not important enough to drive eager involvement for at least a month, then you may want to choose again.) Looking forward 30 days, how will I feel having successfully followed through to completion? Write out a celebratory script in full five-sense detail. If you aren’t really fired up on day one, it likely doesn’t have enough energy to sustain your focus.
3) Action. What are three small steps I can take in the next three days to jumpstart my momentum? Take them one-a-day over the next three days.
4) Frequency. That leaves 27 days, looking at where I want to be on day 30 and back planning, what are 14 possible actions I could take? Take one of these actions every other day. You can change the specific actions once you get going. But if you begin with a pool of actions to choose from you will have increased your probability of success significantly. Frequency is often the missing ingredient in a faulty process.
5) Redemption. We cannot go back in time but we can stop the energy drain of past mistakes by arriving at a place of higher self-regard. Redemption, in this case, is the act of fulfilling a pledge to ourselves that we’ve failed to fulfill previously. By making amends we repair our own self-esteem and prove that we are competent to life. What specific end result would be self-redeeming and make me very proud?
6) Completion. Here’s where you claim the prize (benefit of your main completion) for following through. Imagining this prize is what created the desire for a fresh new start in the beginning. Make sure that this prize is meaningful and valuable to you. What prize will enthusiastically hold my focus for 30 days?

Now that you know how to start over are you going to seize this opportunity? There are no limits to the number of times you can start fresh. You can completely start anew over and over again. Inspiration doesn’t deplete itself. It’s a naturally renewing resource.

Come alive to your greater glory – commit to starting over today.
You can do it and you’ll be glad you did.

Contact you starting over life coach to make a strong start today.