How your thinking shapes your life

Everybody knows the dangers of subconscious limiting beliefs. There are lots and lots of articles describing how our limiting beliefs keep us small, living mediocre lives, overwhelmed with self-doubt, harsh self-criticism and believing we don’t have what it

I know I can handle this
I know I can handle this

takes to create something different.

All of this is true. If you believe you can’t, then you can’t, and all your experiences will support that belief. If you believe you can then your experiences will be evidence of that belief too. You are what you think. Here’s an example:

Up until a few years ago I was struggling finding enough clients to coach. I believed that all I needed to do was

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Why does it matter if you love yourself?

Contrary to what many people believe, loving yourself is NOT self-indulging.   It is NOT a luxury.  On the contrary, it’s absolutely fundamental to our health, wellbeing and happiness.

That’s because our relationship with ourselves determines the quality of all our other relationships.  Most relationships are UN-equal. Often, one person loves more than is being loved in return.  And yet, when we like ourselves, trust ourselves and know that we can depend on ourselves, we’re able to develop relationships with others that are equal; we know that we’re neither ‘less’ nor that we’re ‘more’. 

Love yourself, love others

Generally speaking, we’re not very good at expressing love – neither towards ourselves (we feel unworthy, not good enough, small, riddled with self-doubt) nor towards others (we’re often too scared to allow ourselves to open up and risk being seen.  Loving somebody means making ourselves vulnerable.  More often than not, we use all kinds of self-protective devices that keep others at arm’s length.

Yet, experiencing love – giving and receiving it – is an important element under the all-encompassing heading of happiness. 

Having love in our life is

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Are you sure you know what happiness is?

I’m currently deeply immersed in the pursuit of happiness.  This exploration is not turning out the way I expected it to.  

On reflection, that’s probably because, when I first started out on this journey I thought I knew the answer already.  OK, so that’s not exactly open minded.  But, as the insights began to accumulate my ideas about what happiness actually is and feels like began to expand.

Woo hoo!!!

So I did what all good researchers do – I started to pay attention to the times when I was feeling really happy – what had triggered the feeling?  Is feeling great the same thing as feeling happy?  Like coming out from watching a really satisfying play or film – with one of those really enjoyable story lines with the perfect ending.  That keeps me smiling all the way home – does that mean I’m happy?  Sure!  Why not?  Or feeling absolutely fantastic after I find the perfect outfit for a particular event.  It’s like a sense of triumph!  That definitely keeps me smiling, not just all the way home but often for

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Do you have a ‘wait’ problem?

"This is too much for me!"

Do you have a ‘wait’ problem?  No, I didn’t mis-spell it; I really mean ‘wait’ problem.

This is what my friend asked me the other day a – a little tongue-in-cheek.  As I certainly don’t have a ‘weight’ problem I had no idea how to answer.  She smiled.  I frowned.  “It’s just that I noticed how you tend to scare yourself into a state of paralysis”, she said.  “What do you mean?”  So she told me – and now, I’m telling you:

Whenever I’m confronted with having to learn something new – in my case, something techie, the first thing I tell myself is “No way can I figure that out! I’m sooo not a techie person!”, “I’ll never get the hang of it!” and other variations on the theme.  All things techie

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Writing process blogging tour

My friend Beverley Glick, The Story Archaeologist,  invited me to join her on a writer’s blogging tour.  The idea is that writers answer four questions about their writing process and then hand on to two more writers who do the same thereby creating an ever-increasing inter-linked chain of writers! So here are my answers – followed by two great writers who will follow me!

What am I working on?

Right now I’m involved in a series of projects.  One I’m particularly excited about is

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How to accept yourself

My own journey towards self-acceptance was littered with self-deceptions, struggles and resistances.  I would do whatever it took to avoid looking at myself.  Instead, my strategy was to deny (“it wasn’t me, guv!  It was them!”) and to play the blame game.  That was my loser’s way to wind my way through life, trying to cause as little damage as possible, both to myself and to others. 

"I'm free!"

Thank Goodness, the Universe smiled upon me: I met Alan, the man who became my life coach and, with him, I embarked on the journey that enabled me to create the life I’m living today.

With him, I

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Here’s a no-brainer question: what do you choose? To persist or to give up?

I choose freedom!

 This question became a no-brainer only when I became aware that I actually had a choice. 

It wasn’t always so.  For most of my adult life I had a belief system that the situation – whatever that was – was hopeless and that I was helpless to do anything to change it.  Everything about me reflected that belief and that, in turn, was what I manifested in my life – my relationships, including my marriage, my friendships, even my circumstances.

But that wasn’t the real problem.  The real problem was that I had no idea I held those beliefs and, therefore, I could do nothing to change my situation.

It was only through the process of coaching that I became aware of what I had been doing to myself.  It took a while but I finally reached the point where I declared:  “I don’t DO

Read moreHere’s a no-brainer question: what do you choose? To persist or to give up?

Is there any connection between growing older and becoming less useful?

It's never too late!

I was recently talking with Felicity, a friend of mine who’s in her mid 50’s.  She was feeling confused and anxious.  Things were changing and she was feeling bereft.  First, her husband of 23 years had died and, just as she was beginning to come to terms with his absence, her son, aged 17 started talking about taking a gap year, travelling the world before going to Uni. 

Eventually she confided in me.  “I spent a lot of my adult life looking after my family, first Bill and then my boy.  Who am I now that I have no-one to look after?”

After Ernie died, Felicity

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So you want to make other people happy?

We live in a culture that tells us not only that we can make each other happy but that we should strive to do so. We’re also told that we can’t make anybody happy, only ourselves. Confused? So was I until I read research that shed a light onto the puzzle.

Here’s what studies have found: your feelings – whether positive or negative – are catching! Like the flu! Are you surprised? So was I. Now imagine the implications: You actually CAN make other people happy – by making yourself happy first. This is equally true when you make yourself miserable. You know the saying, ‘misery likes company’.

Read moreSo you want to make other people happy?