A blank page is a gift in life. It can be an ending, a new beginning, a change, a chance to start again or an invitation to something new. Is there a blank page in your life right now? What are you going to do with it? Will you fill it creatively, impulsively, carefully, leave it blank? Or, will you run away from its blankness?
Treasure the blank pages that show up. They give you an opportunity to create the life you want to live.
Sometimes you can get bogged down in life – with too much to do, too many irritations, pressure, unsettled emotions or dissatisfaction, for example. Things can be that way at times – it’s natural. You don’t want to stay there too long, however. Joy can be a great antidote to feeling bogged down. Sometimes, joy presents itself and sometimes it doesn’t. At those times when joy is not present and you need some, you have the choice to create joy.
What brings you joy? Create a bit of it the next time life bogs you down.
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Repass: To pass again; go by again.
Sometimes, you are given an opportunity to look at something again. When an opportunity comes, you can benefit and learn from it. A repass brings a situation in front of you for a second time. I first knowingly experienced a repass just after I started my coaching career. I was asked to consult on an environmental project that brought me back to my previous career. I was working with other consulting firms and soon realized I was looking at my old working environment again. I watched how these firms operated, how their team members were treated and how they did their work. From a distance, this repass gave me new insights on how I used to work, that I could not see before. It also helped me let go of the past and affirm that coaching was my new career, a very different one at that.
Keep your eye out for opportunities that allow you to look again. You’ll learn from them and grow. Have you experienced a repass lately? What did it show you?
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There are a variety of indicators that it is time to think something out again. Perhaps circumstances have changed, you have altered your perspective or something new is affecting a situation. Regrouping is simply addressing something from the present moment, rather than from the past or future, and deciding on a new course of action.
Ignore change at your peril. Regrouping is done easily – with your eyes open, brain engaged and senses alert. Are there any indicators that regrouping is called for in your life or work? Is something asking for your attention? Are you resisting acknowledging a change that has occurred? Regrouping puts you back in control and allows you move forward.
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Is there something you really need to move on? Here’s a push – get it done. Start today, make a plan and get in motion.
Action is the foundational key to all success.
– Pablo Picasso
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Do you ever find yourself caught in a labyrinth at work? Labyrinths involve intricate, difficult pathways, entrances and exits, dead ends, confusion and right and wrong turns. You can find yourself in a labyrinth when executing a difficult project, dealing with hidden agendas, stretching your skills to the max or facing unknown outcomes.
When in a labyrinth, your best strategy is to stay alert, operate fully in the present moment, employ your intelligence, be patient, keep your cool and move forward at a brisk pace. Life and work are such that sometimes a labyrinth stands between you and success. Learn to navigate a labyrinth well and it will not slow you down.
Sometimes in a rush or the heat of a moment, we can forget that we have choice in how we communicate with others. A big lesson for me has been discerning the difference between response and reaction in my communications. Reaction is defined as an action performed or a feeling experienced in response to a situation or event. Response is a reply or an answer. The difference between the two may be subtle, but can make a huge difference.
The way I’ve come to see this is, when something provokes a reaction in me, it is best that I settle and center before I communicate. A reaction is not under my control when it is an unconsidered or emotional one. Reaction is provoked by an action or feeling. A response, in contrast, is of my own making.
Here’s an example: if someone is upset with me, a natural reaction may be to lash back defensively. However, this could escalate the conversation in ways I do not want, especially in a work situation. My reaction is caused by their heightened emotions, not what I want to do. In contrast, a response is considered and dictated by me. The next time an opportunity presents itself, try responding instead of reacting. I think you’ll see its merits.
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Persistence is hardest during challenging times. Challenges can come in many forms: uncertainty about the future, obstacles to your goals, setbacks, personal challenges that affect other aspects of your life or a lack of clarity regarding what to do next. Persistence is often the only way through.
Here are a few suggestions to help you garner the strength you need to persist in challenging times.
• Identify the nature of the challenges you face and carry this awareness in the decisions you make.
• “Up” your self-nurturing”. In challenging times, you need more self-care and joy.
• Remind yourself of why you want to go forward and face any challenges that arise,
• Believe in yourself and find allies who support you.
• Know that this too will pass and you will be better off having persisted.
Life is up and down and then up and down again. The only steadiness in life is found in realizing change is constant and developing what you need to persist through challenges that arise.
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Independence: freedom from the control, influence, support, aid, or the like, of others.
Here in the United States, we are approaching our July 4th holiday – Independence Day. It is a fun day of celebration, good eating, fireworks and festivities.
What’s the state of your own independence? In your estimation, are you too independent or not independent enough? It is a balancing act, as we are interdependent on each other, but also want to be independent and on our own.
Independence matters in several ways. It allows your true expression of self, keeps you free from the control of others and allows you some “space” to be you. How independent do you want to be?
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You often have a choice of avoiding or facing something that is asking for your attention. When you choose to avoid something that matters to you, there are risks involved. Here are some of them:
• The situation can grow bigger, in reality or in your mind.
• You lose the opportunity to respond.
• Avoidance can create anxiety within you.
• You lose out on good outcomes.
• You are not able to see the situation clearly.
• You are expending energy to no avail.
• Your emotions and fears fester and grow.
Is there anything significant that you are avoiding now? Facing it may not be as uncomfortable as you think. Seize the moment now to face it. This will put you in control, create movement towards a positive outcome and relieve the stress involved in avoidance.
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