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in Life AWARENESS Rss

Enough Not Being Enough!

Posted on : 25-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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Not smart enough, not pretty enough, not strong enough, not talented enough, not

loving enough, not disciplined enough, not brave enough…

If you’re caught in the “not enough” trap, nothing about you ever seems quite good enough. Standards by which you measure yourself become inhumane. Successes are rarely enjoyed, for you always feel as if you must do better. Perceived failures are magnified. Life becomes a quest for utter perfection—like the carrot dangling in front of a horse, it is chased but never truly experienced.

“If I’m 98% perfect in anything I do, it’s the 2% I’ve messed up I’ll remember when I’m through,” begins a little ditty. The problem begins when we allow others—family members, our spouse, friends, a boss, popular culture—to define who we are or are not. Unfortunately, these roots of self-image often stretch far back into childhood, when negative messages we received from parents and others imprinted us with a feeling of being stupid, fat, lazy, weak or otherwise inadequate.

But as adults, we can choose to truly accept ourselves—with all our strivings, quirks, faults and shortcomings—as being enough right now. The more we do that, the less vulnerable we are to the opinions of others.

Common Roadblocks

Posted on : 24-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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So how do you effect real change, change that starts from within? The first step is to identify just what is holding you back. Some common internal roadblocks are:

•  Fear. Probably the most popular culprit, the list of fears is endless. Whatever your fears, they prevent you in some way from experiencing your full potential.

•  Thinking small. If you expect less, you get less. You have to think big and believe you can have success before you will actually experience it.

•  Being out of balance. When we overfocus on certain areas of our lives to the exclusion of others, we experience stress and incongruence. Creativity is then compromised.

•  Lack of motivation. Without passion for what you’re doing (or at least a big payoff), it’s difficult to get moving in any direction.

Once you determine your specific roadblocks, it’s time to face them head on, reprogramming your beliefs and defining (or redefining) your life priorities and purpose. Working with a coach helps many to determine a practical strategy for navigating the roadblocks. Steven Covey of Seven Habits suggests writing a personal mission statement (as you would for a company) and then organizing your life around it.

For the goals that seem impossible to accomplish, Barbara Sher, career counselor and best-selling author, suggests throwing an “idea party.” Get a group of people together and take turns throwing out your ideas and their obstacles—you’ll be surprised at some of the creative answers you’ll receive.

But whatever you do, keep looking inside. Take responsibility for what you create externally and work on winning the inner game. When you do, you’ll start winning in the outer world, too.

Want to transform those limiting beliefs?

What if there was a simple, yet powerful technique to free your mind of negative beliefs that sabotage your success and happiness?

There is, PSYCH-K!

Most work takes place between 1-4 sessions!

Call to set up your appointment today!

(773) 736-6556

Playing the Inner Game to Win

Posted on : 23-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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Tom has worked at his company for more than four years and knows he does a great job. His boss even tells him so. He’s been wanting to ask for a raise for several months, but it just never seems like the right time to ask. At least, that’s what he keeps telling himself.

But could it really be that Tom is afraid of rejection? Or on some level—perhaps a subconscious one—he doesn’t feel he “deserves” to get paid well for the work he does?

“In every human endeavor there are two arenas of engagement: the outer and the inner,” says Tim Gallwey, author of The Inner Game of Work. “The outer game is played on an external arena to overcome external obstacles. The inner game takes place within the mind and is played to overcome the self-imposed obstacles.”

You can try harder to change by taking more action in the “outside,” physical world. But if you’re powered by limiting beliefs and negative feelings, chances are you’re just going to go faster in the wrong direction.

Want to transform those limiting beliefs?

What if there was a simple, yet powerful technique to free your mind of negative beliefs that sabotage your success and happiness?

There is, PSYCH-K!

Most work takes place between 1-4 sessions!

Call to set up your appointment today!

(773) 736-6556

What Does the Web Have To Do With It?

Posted on : 23-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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This idea of the Web driving a new age of personal branding may have been expressed first by management guru Tom Peters in an article in Fast Magazine in 1997. Everyone needs to be “the CEO of Me, Inc.,” he argued. In Peters’ words, “branding means nothing more (and nothing less) than creating a distinct personality…and telling the world about it.”

Web sites create the potential for your brand to have unprecedented reach. The branding communicated through your Web site will help drive your word-of-mouth campaign, and consistent branding will help get your emails opened, read and acted upon. Meanwhile blogs have become the Web tool du jour for personal branding among certain segments—particularly writers and technical professionals.

But another critical aspect of “brand building” for small firms and solo practitioners is the old standby: growing your network. A crisply defined brand should make that process simpler—who you are and what you do will be easier to remember if you have done your brand homework—but it still requires getting your brand in front of people the old-fashioned way, one handshake at a time.

Arruda lists three tips for making the most of your personal brand to build your business, or to enhance or reinforce your value within your corporation:

•  Make sure that everything that surrounds your brand (your office, Web site, customer service organization, etc.) communicates the same brand message.

•  Build and nurture your professional network and ensure that all members understand your brand message.

•  Establish appropriate partnerships to extend your brand and gain complementary brand value.

A personal brand may be a valuable tool to define and refine what you do and how you tell your customers or your employers about it.

Target a Smaller, Better Defined Market

Posted on : 20-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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Effective branding often means targeting a smaller, better defined market with a much more focused message, says William Arruda, head of the personal branding consultancy Reach. “Although it seems counterintuitive, the smaller you make your target market, the greater your chances of success.”

For those in the corporate world, personal branding is a natural part of the job-hunting process—particularly for someone mapping out a long-term career trajectory. According to Arruda, it can also make sense to tend to your personal brand within your corporate environment, though the territory gets a little tricky when he describes your co-workers as your “competition.”

“Many executives feel they need to conform to business norms when they go to work, but this prevents building a brand,” Arruda wrote in a recent Career Journal article for the Wall Street Journal. “In the new world of work, those who stand out succeed, so put your brand on everything you do. Whether you’re making a presentation, in a meeting or writing a report, don’t leave your brand at home. Ask yourself how you can connect your brand to every situation.”

No matter where you’re building your personal brand, a critical component of communicating it is likely to happen on the Internet. Although the importance of branding has been known for decades in the large corporate arena, where billions of dollars get spent each year in “brand building” campaigns, it is the Web that has driven the surge of interest in branding at the personal level. It eliminates many traditional barriers to commerce while reinforcing the word-of-mouth value of that special something that makes each business—each person—unique, i.e., its brand.

Is Personal Branding the Answer?

Posted on : 19-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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The idea of a “personal brand” is something we all understand…at least as it relates to celebrities. Figures such as Madonna, Tom Cruise and Lance Armstrong craft and maintain their brands as enthusiastically as the Coca Colas and the Nikes of the corporate world.

But a personal brand for you and me? Absolutely, says personal branding guru Peter Montoya. The issue, in fact, isn’t whether to create a personal brand, but how to create the most effective one you can, he says.

“Everyone has a personal brand, whether they like it or not,” says Montoya, author of The Brand Called You and The Personal Branding Phenomenon. The goal must be to craft that brand so that it creates a clear and memorable impression about who you are and what you do—whether you are a small business owner, a solo entrepreneur or a corporate executive.

A personal brand is “the powerful, clear, positive idea that comes to mind whenever other people think of you,” Montoya explains. It’s the values, abilities and actions you stand for, or, as he puts it, your personal brand is “who you are, what you do, and what makes you different or how you create value for your target market.”

In that sense a personal brand is a little broader than a corporate brand, but it’s not just a synonym for professional marketing. In fact, most personal branding experts say the process of developing a personal brand turns the typical marketing process on its head. Instead of starting with segmenting, targeting, product, price, etc., you start with…you. You define who you are, what is truly important to you and what makes you unique—and then you build your brand around that core set of values. In marketing lingo, you uncover your “unique promise of value.” From there, you identify exactly what segment of the market you want to serve and how best to do it.

How to Handle Your Passions

Posted on : 18-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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In her book Refuse to Choose: A Revolutionary Program for Doing Everything That You Love, career counselor Barbara Sher provides dozens of tools for dealing with a multiplicity of passions and also divides what she calls “Scanners” into nine categories. The “Double Agent” is torn between two interests, while the “Sybil” is drawn to so many things that she’s often unable to choose anything. The “Serial Specialist” and “Serial Master” often stick with one career or project for many years until they’ve gained all they desire from it, and then move on to master different occupations. Understanding your type can help you recognize strengths, get support, and choose work that suits you.

Along with clarifying your core values, Margaret Lobenstine’s “Renaissance Focal Point Strategy” recommends choosing a “sampler” of four interests and then rotating them. For example, you might work on a new business venture, volunteer to teach reading in your local school, take acting lessons and study Italian. If you want to, in six months you rotate some of those out and choose others. That way you’re moving out of indecision and into action, honoring your renaissance soul, and accomplishing goals. A journal and 3-ring binders can help you track your numerous ideas and keep your projects organized.

Finally, a simple, yet effective way to discover your passions. Janet and Chris Attwood, in their book, The Passion Test help you:

  • Clarify your top passions
  • Stay on track with your passions
  • Overcome the inevitable challenges
  • Attract everything you’d like to have in your life
  • Then you’ll learn the challenges and lessons of people who have been remarkably successful at living their passions

As they say, when faced with a choice, always choose in favor of your passions!

Often all it takes is a shift of attitude to embrace your renaissance nature. Learn to honor its ways and you may find that your many talents lead you to a fulfilling, passion-filled life.

Too Many Passions?

Posted on : 17-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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Jeff is nearing age 50 and has followed one passion after another into a variety of careers. Although each choice made perfect sense to him, his parents and friends keep asking when he’s going to get serious and rise to the top in just one profession.

The old saying: Jack-of-all-trades, master of none! reveals the bias against those who choose a varied work life rather than committing to a unidirectional path. There was a time, however, when society admired such a person. In fact, some of our greatest contributors have been talented in a variety of areas.

Leonardo da Vinci, painter of masterpieces such as the Mona Lisa, also designed and built bicycles, canals, musical instruments and flying machines. Benjamin Franklin not only helped draft the Declaration of Independence, he was also an inventor, statesman, printer, scientist, author, and student of French culture and language. More recently, Maya Angelou, best known as an author and poet, is also a successful songwriter, journalist, actress, singer, dancer, civil rights worker and professor. And she speaks eight languages!

Margaret Lobenstine, author of The Renaissance Soul–Life Design for People with Too Many Passions to Pick Just One, identifies five signs to help determine whether you are a “Renaissance Soul”:

• The ability to become excited by many things at once, often accompanied by difficulty choosing

• A love of new challenges; once challenges are mastered, you are easily bored

• A fear of being trapped in the same career or activity for life

• A pattern of quick, sometimes unsatisfying flings with many hobbies

• A successful career that has left you bored or restless

There is Nothing Wrong with You

People who recognize themselves in that description often feel that something is wrong with them, that they’re not normal. They may be accused of an unwillingness to grow up. They may be called irresponsible, a dilettante, or told they have Attention Deficit Disorder.

If you fit the above criteria, take heart. Support is available to help you embrace your strengths and stop trying to fit into the mold of someone you are not. In fact, your traits make you an ideal candidate for work that requires flexibility, adaptability to change, and a broad skill base. Renaissance Souls are often ideal entrepreneurs since they typically wear many hats in their own business. Public relations, marketing, consulting and project management are other good choices. Because of their multifaceted abilities, they may also adapt better in today’s shifting financial climate and global economy. What’s more, their passionate nature and curiosity are truly an asset in any arena!

Importance of Agreements

Posted on : 16-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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Some agreements are implied and ongoing. For example, the unspoken pacts of friendship might include maintaining or initiating contact, keeping confidences and talking about problems. In some cases, it may help to discuss expectations and needs.

Agreements with children are incredibly important. “Over time, broken agreements lead to a broken heart,” said Kasl.

Sometimes, no matter how careful we are, we make an agreement we regret. Our schedules are dangerously overbooked or something that sounded good at first doesn’t feel right now. (Again, it’s important to pay attention to our inner voices and our bodies.) It’s better to call and make changes as soon as possible, rather than wait until the last minute or, worse, simply not show up. It’s important to tell the truth, too. Fake excuses and white lies don’t hold up under the straight beam of integrity’s light.

The art of thoughtful and careful agreement-making is a learned skill. Broken promises and unfulfilled commitments may be as ubiquitous as the shards of ceramic that surround an apprentice potter. Still, we turn back to the wheel of our intentions, and begin again. Making and keeping agreements is a way of building trust and showing our love and respect for others as well as for ourselves.

Are You as Good as Your Word?

Posted on : 13-04-2012 | By : Cathy | In : Uncategorized

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“Like litter on the side of the highway, most unhappy relationships are strewn with broken agreements in all shapes and forms,” said Charlotte Kasl, Ph.D., author of A Home for the Heart. From canceling dates at the last minute to “forgetting” to do something we said we would do, broken agreements cause an erosion of trust, the basic foundation of any relationship.

Giving our word and standing by it and being steadfast and reliable in our affairs are measures by which we evaluate commitment and integrity. For this reason, agreements—both spoken and implied—should be given thoughtful and careful attention.

Consider Marshall. Again and again he promised to come home early enough to share dinner with his family. And night after night, either he called to say he couldn’t make dinner after all, or he simply didn’t show until long after the dinner was ruined and the family was hungry and disappointed.

Or Deirdre. She and her husband had an agreement that she wouldn’t make any additional charges on their over-burdened credit cards. But every month, the bills arrived, fat with new charges and higher-than-ever balances.

In confidence, Sophia told Margaret about a problem. What an awkward surprise when Janice, a mutual friend, asked Sophia how she was coping with her difficulty.

In each of these instances, an agreement was broken and a trust betrayed. Everyone involved was tarnished by the experience—those to whom agreements were made, and those who made¬, and broke, the agreement.

Making and keeping agreements requires that we are honest and that we intend to carry through. Thoughtful and careful agreements require that we listen to our inner voices and pay attention to our bodies for clues to our feelings about the promises we make.

Whenever we make an agreement we need to ask ourselves, Is this a pledge I really want to make? Is it realistic for me at this time? What will it take or what will I have to do to keep the agreement?

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