Boost Your Immunity by Getting Engaged!

Everyone is currently talking about the importance of a healthy immune system, and I could not agree MORE!

We’ve heard reminders about the importance of proper hydration, plenty of rest, washing our hands, eating healthy foods, – avoid crap food because if your body is already struggling with garbage and toxins, it has less strength to fight off viruses – drinking less alcohol, reducing smoking, washing our hands, staying active, taking probiotics, getting some sunshine every day, and then washing our hands again.

All of these things are GREAT to boost immunity, plus they help us feel healthier & more energized! One thing I have not heard mentioned in this torrent of common sense is to get engaged! 

Human beings are energy systems. 

We literally exist to flow energy.  When our energy is not flowing it is stagnant, and our energy system feels depressed.  Stuck energy causes physical dis-ease, and once we stop flowing energy, our Spirit disengages from our physical body and we have our ‘death’ experience.  – According to Abraham, we never die.  We are eternal beings and when we ‘die’ we still exist as non-physical energy that is 100% engaged in all the same subjects of interest we had while in physical form.

The only way to flow energy is to engage energy.

So get engaged!  Find something that you are passionate about and focus on that.  That’s what flows energy and sustains our Spirit.  Boredom will kill us!  Boredom stagnates our energy and energy needs to flow.

So besides following all of the wonderful common sense advice to eat right, get plenty of rest, and wash your hands repeatedly, get excited about your life!  If we’re not feeling passionate about SOMETHING, we are an easy target  for that energy transference known as ‘death’ that so many people fear.  

If we are sleepwalking through life, going to work, surviving the mental clutter in our mind, emotionally drained, tolerating relationships, physically inactive, and spiritually unanchored, then we are NOT energetically engaged!  Washing our hands a million times can’t boost our immune system enough to counteract this level of energy stagnation.

When we stop flowing energy in this physical body, when we stop being engaged in our current life, we are as likely to die in our sleep or in a freak accident as to be taken out by a viral pandemic.

More than one client this week has expressed a fear of dying, and anyone watching TV, or surfing the internet these days might resonate with that fear.

Fear of death might mean that we do not understand our eternal, infinite nature.  But my intuition tells me that most people are afraid to die because there is something the heart longs to do that is yet undone.  THAT is where passion lies!  Focus on THAT because it will flow energy and feed your resilience, and expand your soul.

Many clients have told me they don’t know what THAT is for them, so they get discouraged.  I say let that encourage you!  If your fear of death is telling you there is MORE yet to be done, that your purpose is not yet fulfilled, then allow that knowing to fill you with HOPE!  Not hope simply that death will not yet come for you, but hope that you have purpose and your purpose will again engage and flow energy through this life.  And flowing energy is the purpose.  Of all life.

So go get engaged!  Find your passion and flow with it.

Flow on!

What do you enjoy? 
Find ways to incorporate it into your life as soon & as often as possible.

If you do not know what you enjoy, it’s very possible that until now, others have defined your life for you.  If this is true for you, I encourage you not to be too hard on yourself, because it is true for MANY people.  It’s quite common to let our parents, our spouse, our children, or our career define “who” we are.  But when their version of who we ‘should be’ no longer inspires us, or when the outside influence goes away, we may not know what we truly want or where to flow our energy.

Try doing something differently than you normally do it. Do you enjoy that? Do it again! Not so much? Forget about that experiment and try something different.

Enjoy it? Keep it. Do it again.
Not so much? Move on to experiment with a new experience.

The important thing is to get that energy flowing.
You’ll figure it out as you go. You’ve GOT this.

Here are a few options to engage energy and get it flowing: 

Physical activity to move or unstick physical energy.
Journal to unstick mental/emotional energy & gain clarity.
See a therapist to unstick old emotional energy.
Hire a coach to help identify and remove energy blocks.
Plan activities with friends or family to engage social energy.
Reduce exposure to toxic people to move stuck energy.
Be of service to others to engage social and spiritual energies.
Take self-maintenance seriously to engage spiritual energy.
Meditate or connect with nature to move spiritual energy. 
Read spiritually uplifting books or blogs.
Clean home and office to move energy in your environment.

What’s YOUR favorite way to engage energy or get unstuck?
Please share in the comments!

Train Your Brain!

Teach your brain to think thoughts that serve you!  Our brains are the greatest tool humans have, yet most of us don’t take the time to use it to our advantage!

It’s super easy to focus on ‘what is’ in a negative way because the media is constantly bombarding us with stories that shock or provoke for the sake of ratings.  Once these things have our attention, it’s easy to attract MORE stories like that to focus on because energy attracts like energy.

I may have mentioned this before, but if we want to attract,
good-feeling, positive, prosperous energy that allows us to feel energized, we must actively choose to integrate that type of energy.

Think of yourself as a radio.  You can’t tune the radio to a rap station, and expect to hear classical music.  If you want classical music, you tune to the classical station.  If we want to attract good-feeling, positive, prosperous energy, we need to “tune in” to what feels good, positive, and prosperous!

Station BJOY flows abundant wellbeing all day every day!  

“This is DJ Cyndi Combs at radio station BJOY, bringing you your morning vibration-raising tuneup full of faith, sunny optimism
and ease.  Programming to make you soul sing with connection,
so you can be joy!”

We can also choose to focus on is what’s wrong, what MIGHT go wrong, and who or what is to blame, and guess what we attract into our lives?  More of what is going wrong, and people and circumstances to blame for that.

And many people don’t know that we are tuning our life’s ‘station’ (vibration) to what we look at, so they will receive whatever chaos
and negative energy is being broadcast in the world around them.

There are many ways to train our brain to ’tune in’ to things that raise our vibration, and what works for one person may not work for the next, so it becomes a matter of creating your own recipe for personal success and motivation! It’s not one formula for everyone or one-size-fits-all. Each of us must play with possibilities, explore options, and come to our own individualized secret sauce. Below, I have compiled a very short list of success formula ingredients that have served many people on their wellbeing journey.

As you read it, consider which ones appeal to you.

A short list of ingredients you could choose to add to your Personal Success Formula:

Meditation
Journaling
Being Active
Being in nature
Reading uplifting books, blogs, and podcasts
Making room for Creativity
Making room for fun & play
Practicing Affirmations
Daily Gratitude
Proper Hydration
Adequate Rest
Avoiding Sugar
Personal Nutrition Plan
Practice Happiness Daily – link has a longer list of specific resources
Life Tools – link to more specific resources
Hiring a Coach! – Three resources in case you are considering hiring a coach
Cyndi
Ana Verzone
a long list of certified professional coaches

Please remember the possibilities are infinite!

This is not meant to be a comprehensive list as possibilities for raising your vibration vary in effectiveness over time, and from person to person. All the ones I list have a strong track record for helping a wide variety of people tune in to more fulfillment, wellbeing, and success.

Now, I do NOT mean that people who tune to positive, prosperous energy walk around in a perpetual state of bliss or nirvana, never experiencing challenges.  Life does NOT work like that.

What I do mean is that when challenges arise, we don’t feel like we’ve been kicked in the dirt and left without choice.  We find our balance faster, and move quickly from focusing on the challenge to creating one or more solutions.

It’s super easy to focus on what’s in front of us.  But if we solely focus on what we see, that is all we can attract and create.  If we want to attract and create more than what we currently have in our world, it takes daily practice and constant reminders over weeks and months.  It will also require more effort than remaining in our current pattern, because the current patterns are ingrained over years or decades.

You’re worth the effort!

Grow on!

Create your own Success Formula by keeping a list of the things that elevate your game!

What are you currently doing that feeds your soul? 
How often are you doing that? 
How often would you like to do it? 
What is something that you LOVE to do, but don’t do anymore because you don’t have the time or money? 
How can you start integrating that into your life again? 
Which of the items from the short list above sound like fun? 
Which would you like to learn more about? 
Would you like to learn more about living the greatest version of yourself? 

If you are considering hiring a life coach to get more out of life, please contact me!  We’ll schedule a short chat to see if I am the right coach for you, or if I can refer you to a coach with a specialty that may be better suited for your growth.

The Importance of Feeling our Feelings

Why are emotions called feelings?

Because we feel emotions, physically, in our bodies.  Human beings experience emotions as a specific set of physical sensations. 
For example when I feel grief, my body feels deeply weighted and lethargic.  When I feel joy, my heart feels light, as if filled with helium, and I have a humming vibration along my skin.  Self-doubt feels like my body is contracting inward away from the world, and confidence feels expansive, light, and powerful.

Our emotions are simply vibrations that we feel in our body, and are part of our human experience.  In and of themselves, these vibrations cannot harm us!  

Emotions are vibrations that we experience as completely harmless physical sensations.  

So if the vibrations can’t harm us, why do so many people go to such extraordinary lengths to avoid what we perceive as negative emotions?

That’s what’s happening if my lover leaves me and I eat a gallon of ice cream.  I’m trying to avoid feeling the pain of my emotions.  Same thing with drugs and alcohol.  People are drawn to using these substances to numb our ‘hard’ emotions, the sadness, frustration, anger, disappointment, fear, or worry that crop up in our lives.

And who would blame us?  There are situations and circumstances in this lifetime where every one of us can relate to why THAT emotion might hurt too much to feel, and why someone might choose to numb the pain.  It’s sort of like if you break your leg, that HURTS.  No one is going to bat an eye if you take some pain killers for that.  So if someone is going through emotional pain, it’s understandable that we might want some pain killers for that, too.

The broken leg eventually heals, our pain subsides, and our use of pain killers ceases. Emotional pain eventually heals, too but not until we allow ourselves to transform the pain, and transforming the pain requires allowing ourselves to FEEL the emotion.

This is where it can get a bit tricky, because we feel the pain and want to numb it to avoid it, so we do (normal). 

But if we do not stop numbing the emotional pain and allow ourselves to feel it, to move through it, we can get stuck in the cycle of continuously numbing that pain to not feel it, then feeling it and numbing it, feel the pain then numb the pain.  Unlike the broken leg,
it’s not going to heal until you allow yourself to feel your feelings.  If we attempt to push our emotions away, they keep coming back.  We cannot resist our emotions. 

If we wish to get past our challenging emotions, we must allow the experience by being present with the emotion.

I remember the first time my coach suggested this to me I thought she was mad. I had been avoiding hard emotions for decades with booze and sugar, and she wanted me to sit with those feelings?! 

The idea positively made my skin crawl!

Then she taught me the most amazing technique. I learned to objectively describe the emotion as the physical sensations I experienced in my body – without attaching my story to it,
and without wallowing in the emotion.

When we experience the physical vibration of the emotion without attaching a story to it, we can simply observe the experience of emotion, rather than becoming the emotion.

“I am experiencing anger,” has a much different energy than,
“I am angry.”  Feel the difference?

Physical description: the anger feels physically like a kick in my gut.  My face is hot and red and my heart is beating faster than normal. 
I can feel my pulse through my whole body.

Description with our story attached might look like this:  I am so PISSED that person did XYZ to me!  What is wrong with them? 
Were they raised by wolves?  Who acts that way?  This will never work!  I won’t stand for it!  I have every right to be furious about this!

Which description drains more energy?

When we attach a story to the emotion, we attach ourselves to it.

Our emotions do not define us.  They are not who we are.  They are simply indicators of where we are at any given moment.

Reach for a better feeling thought.

As a core energy coach, I help clients shift perspective to find a vibration that allows greater success in their lives.  Sometimes people get the wrong idea and think that we are supposed to push away bad feeling emotions and strive to feel only positive ones, and that is NOT the case at all.

We absolutely want to trade up the emotional ladder, to feel better and better and better about ourselves and our lives, but we can’t do that by only experiencing our positive emotions and repressing those we don’t enjoy as much. 

Abraham-Hicks emotional scale

If we take a few moments to actually be present with our hard emotions (describe them physically), then we are able to move through the emotion and beyond it to a better feeling vibration and not just pushing it away hoping it won’t pop up again.

The human experience is a kaleidoscope of emotions, each color adding depth and meaning to the overall picture.  The more colors we integrate, the more rich and beautiful our lives become.

We gotta feel ALL our feels.

Grow on!

What physical sensations do you experience when you feel angry?
Sad?
Anxious?
Shame?
Guilt?
Peace?
Confidence?
Hopeful?
Inspired?
Joyous?

Which emotions do you try not to feel?
Which emotion is your least fave?
Describe that emotion physically and allow yourself to observe it.

CONSTANT Calibration

Have you ever tried to realign your physical body? 

If you ever experienced injury the answer is yes, even if it’s just remembering not to limp anymore once a sprained ankle heals.  If you’ve ever experienced back injury or any kind of surgery on your abdomen, it takes some practice to remember how to stand up straight again! 

Don’t slouch!  How often has your intention been to improve your posture?  Trying to sit or stand correctly so that your back doesn’t ache is one that many people are familiar with.

How many times a day do you remind yourself to correct your posture in one of these situations?  Like a million?  And then how many times do you find yourself back to the old familiar slouch?  At least a million and one.  Almost more than we can catch and correct it seems.  Sometimes when we are combatting pain, we stay pretty motivated to be on top of it until we correct the issue.  Still, it takes continuous focus on the change we desire.  It takes correction after correction for days and weeks and months to finally create a habit so we don’t have to think about it so frequently.

The same constant calibration and recalibration is required to change any habitual patterns that we desire to improve or discontinue.  Habits are behaviors that are ingrained because we have practiced them for months or years or decades.  We barely register them as we carry them out, because they have become relegated to our unconscious mind which is very efficient.  Our unconscious mind works so quickly that we don’t even realize we’ve done that thing again, that we were meaning to stop doing, until after we’ve done it.  We do it unconsciously.  We have repeated the pattern so many times that the thought pathway completes itself undetected.

If we wish to change a habitual behavior we must disrupt our thoughts constantly. Repeatedly.

Currently we are calibrated to our habits. If we wish to recalibrate to actions that stem from conscious choice, we need to disrupt the thought pattern that leads to the habitual behavior, and we need to disrupt it REPEATEDLY.  We can’t just decide to to it and then do it. 
As in the example above about physical realignment, we’re going to return to our slouch because it’s what we’ve practiced, until we practice something else – a LOT.

It’s going to take correcting ourselves and reminding ourselves and recalibrating thoughts and behaviors constantly until we create the new habit we desire.

How do we do that?

It seems like when most of us try to change a behavior, we make it a little while, but then we fall back into old patterns and give up!  It seems fruitless because after all, we WILL revert to the old habit unless we are constantly vigilant.

So when you do revert back to the old pattern of behavior, it doesn’t mean that you’re stupid, or weak, or bad, or incapable of change. 
It means you are human and did what all of us do when we try to overcome old programming.  In other words, you’re perfectly normal.

So BE constantly vigilant! 

Focus as often as you can on the change you want.  Write about it in your morning pages.  Put sticky notes or fancy affirmation cards about it all over your house.  Set an alarm on your phone to remind you to think about the change you are making.  Talk to your coach or therapist about it.  Tell anyone who supports your desire to change, and DON’T discuss it with anyone who may be unsupportive.  Put notes on your desktop.  Send yourself emails reminding you what you want to do.  Read books on the subject of your challenge or change or area of growth.  Read inspiring books on any subject!  Create a mantra and repeat it often.  Make a vision board that supports your change and look at it frequently.

The more often we can bring our conscious choice to the front of our thoughts, the more opportunities we get to interrupt unconscious thoughts that lead to the actions that no longer serve our well-being.

When our unconscious thoughts DO complete the circuit, and we take an action we are trying to avoid, we want to LEARN as much as we can about ourselves from that!  What thoughts were we thinking that triggered the behavior?  What triggered those thoughts?  What can we do when this type of obstacle arises in the future?  How will we use this information to grow?

If we can turn it into wisdom that adds to our chance of success in the future, then it’s a big win because we are still moving toward our goal!

Change requires vigilance so old behaviors don’t creep back in.

Once we bring ourselves into alignment with the change we want to make, then we must calibrate and recalibrate constantly, bringing ourselves back into alignment, remembering  and reminding ourselves of the goal, practicing constantly until the new desired action becomes the unconscious habit.

And see, once we train our conscious choice into unconscious action, then we have a new habit and it no longer seems like work or takes any effort at all!  We simply do the new action that supports our health without thinking about it, because it has become our new norm.

Totally worth the effort!

I Don’t Have Time to Meditate!

My life is BUSY!  Much like yours, no doubt.

We all have jobs to get to every day, and some of us have second jobs.  Some of us commute and that can be like a second job.  I feel fortunate to live ten minutes from my office, so that’s not one of the things that sucks time out of my day, but believe me, there are myriad more because I run a thriving massage practice, I sell my landscape photography, and now am transitioning to empowerment coaching and finishing my grad work at iPEC.

People need time to buy groceries, plan meals, prepare foods, get car repairs, stop for gas, see the doctor, see their therapist, get to the gym, fit in some cardio or yoga, buy clothes, celebrate people they love, spend time with friends and family, keep our homes tidy, wash the cars, mow the lawn, prune bushes, rake leaves, develop professionally, develop personally, get plenty of rest, stay hydrated, the list is infinite!  I can’t possibly name all the stuff we need to do.

Then there are people with kids!  Children come with a whole other set of time sinks to drain their parents’ already busy schedules.

So if you keep hearing that meditation is a key foundation to living a better life, you will not be alone if your first thought is, “Who the fuck has time to meditate?  I certainly don’t!” It seems like just one more thing that needs doing, right?

Abraham (Esther Hicks) says that saying you don’t have time to meditate is like saying you don’t have time to look for your car keys, so you’ll just walk from Phoenix to San Diego.  That’s how essential meditation is!  Sure, you can get where you’re going without it, but it’s going to take a WHOLE lot longer to get where you are wanting to go!

When you do a quick search online, it’s easy to find articles about people adopting a meditation practice to improve their lives.  Here is a list of links you may find interesting if you’d like more information:

The Scientific Power of Meditation
6 Daily Habits of Self-Made Billionaires
11 Wildly Successful Entrepreneurs Who Swear by Daily Meditation
7 Types of Meditation

Rich, famous, successful people all over the world swear by meditation as a habit that has escalated their prosperity and well being in a meaningful way. 

That may be fine for the rich and famous, after all they have more time on their hands than those of us working two jobs and raising kids without nannies, right? If we had the nanny, and the maid, and a personal shopper & chef, we would have time to meditate and improve our vibration, too!  (Calibrating our own vibration to the vibration of our Source is the whole point of meditation.)

But what if making time to meditate every day gave us the power we needed to excel throughout the rest of our day?  What if regular meditation allowed you to feel less stress?  What if you could enjoy your life more by syncing up with Source energy on a daily basis?  What would THAT be worth?  More peace of mind.  More financial security.  Less stress and time-scarcity.  

Would we make time to meditate if we received all these benefits?

That seems priceless!  All it costs is minutes of our time each day, and a commitment to stick with it until we can see and feel the results for ourselves.

Now, I could go on and on, but I would rather have you take the next
3-10 minutes to sit and follow your breath.

Grow on!

Just breathe…

Who the Fuck needs a Life Coach?

It has come to my attention that marketing professional coaching
is much, MUCH harder than marketing amazing massage therapy. 

If I ask you for referrals to my massage practice, you can probably think of at least a dozen people who want one or who can benefit from it.  If I ask you for referrals to my coaching practice, you probably know at least a half dozen, but how would you KNOW they need a coach? 

In thirteen years of practicing massage, I never had to pay for advertising and I certainly never had to educate people about what it is that I do.  People know what a massage is and many of us (me FIRST!) are addicted to the stress release, pleasure, comfort, relaxation and overall feeling of well-being that comes with massage.  Many people are realizing that massage is an essential part of their health care budget, and include it as a regular part of their self-care.

If you have an amazing massage therapist and you hear someone say that their back hurts, or that they started running and have tight hamstrings, or that they suffer from tension headaches, you know from personal experience that massage is helpful, and you feel confident saying so and recommending your therapist.  Massage therapy is pretty mainstream, so if you find yourself in need of massage, you feel comfortable asking friends for recommendations.  But, who the fuck needs a life coach? 

Maybe a better question to start with is, 

What the fuck does a life coach do?

When my therapist first suggested that I would make a great life coach, my response to her was, “Is that a thing?”  So I am never surprised when people haven’t a clue about what I do or who needs/wants professional coaching.

Coaches are NOT therapists, psychologists or counselors. If you are clinically depressed, please seek help from one of these professions. Coaches do not give advice or delve into the roots of your issues.

Coaches help you clearly see where you are,
then help you map a path to where you want to go.

Humans sometimes struggle with getting to where we want to be.  We might know what we want and just can’t quite figure out how to get there.  Or maybe we KNOW the steps required to get us there, but we can’t quite motivate ourselves to take those steps.  Sometimes we can’t even figure out WHAT the hell we want because we have so many thoughts cluttering our minds.

People may struggle with time scarcity and feel overwhelmed. 
We sometimes deal with financial scarcity that can create cycles of fear and worry.  During transitions in our lives, we can sometimes feel unanchored, and unsure what course to chart next.  If we have many paths before us, sometimes we can’t choose.  And if we have any difficult emotions attached to the situations we are going through, that’s when things can get challenging. 

It is immensely helpful in times like these to talk to someone who is not emotionally attached to your outcome, someone who can help clarify your thinking and help you find your way forward to where you want to be.

That’s what life coaches do. We help clients overcome obstacles to get from where they are to where they’d like to be.

How do we do that?  By having conversations about values, goals, and habitual thoughts and behavior patterns.  By looking at what influences their energy socially, physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and environmentally. 
By discovering ways to increase energy in all those areas.  By replacing fear with faith, which has a very different vibration and attracts very different energy into one’s life.

So, who the fuck needs a life coach?

People going through one of the struggles mentioned above.  People who never have the energy to do what they love doing. People who want to reach their goals.  People who want to manifest their dreams.  People going through any kind of transition like changing careers or relationships, moving to a new city, or empty nesting.  People struggling to reach their health goals.  People who have lost their confidence or have low self-esteem.  People who know they want MORE from their lives, but aren’t quite sure more of what.

Me.  I need a life coach.  

One of the BEST parts about my coaching school was that we constantly had peers coaching us for practice.  I was practicing my coaching skills which was extremely valuable, but receiving coaching weekly had the added benefit of tremendous self-growth along with an increased understanding of what it feels like to receive the benefits of regular coaching.  My mother looked at me like I was crazy when I told her I was still being coached regularly.  “But you are a trained coach, why do you need one?”

GREAT question!  There are a lot of ways in which I can and do coach myself all the time to change habitual thoughts from my past that do not serve my goals.  But I also pay two professional coaches for regular sessions.  I have an In the Flow coach who helps keep my energy and enthusiasm high, and I have a life coach to help me plan my goals, improve my relationships, and be the best version of me that I can be!  I also follow a business coach on Facebook to pick up lots of hints and tips on how to grow my coaching practice.

So, who needs a life coach?  Everyone NEEDS a life coach!

But, who can coaching help?

Coaching can ONLY help those who are willing to show up for themselves, and take the actions required to get out of their own way and get to where they want to go.

Here is the most important question:

Who the fuck is READY for a life coach?

If you know a truly amazing life coach, who do you refer to her for coaching?  

Coaching is becoming more common, but when someone finds themselves needing a coach, they may not feel comfortable asking for recommendations.  They may not think any of their friends know a life coach.  It’s just not that main stream.  I mean, really, is life coaching a thing?

PLEASE keep your ears open for key phrases like these:

I always feel so overwhelmed!
I’m tired all the time. I have no energy. 
I want to change (something), but have no idea how! 
I have tried to change (something), but I always fail. 
My life doesn’t matter. 
I’ll never reach my goals. 
Is this all there is to life? 
I want more from my life, I just don’t know what. 
Why can’t I stick to my own healthy intentions?
I have to do everything myself. 
I’m in a rut and I can’t get out. 
I want to complete (some large goal) but I have no idea where to start!

Anyone saying these things will benefit from coaching.
If you regularly say these things, contact me for a chat!

When you hear phrases like these from friends, you will be helping us both by giving them my name and contact info. 

I will be delighted to schedule a 30 minute session to see if coaching is a good fit for the challenges they’re facing.  No obligation. No sales pitch.  If it seems like coaching can help, I’ll tell them what I offer my clients.  If I am not the right coach for them, I have an extensive network of other coaches with varying specialities that I am delighted to refer them to, and a LONG list of free resources that might be all they need to set them on the path to their dreams!

This is partially about building my practice, but it’s mostly about making sure people have the support they need to succeed in life! 

That’s what I am passionate about! 
I want everyone to live the best possible version of themselves!

Grow on!

What will happen if you share this blog post?
Who will you help? 
Who do you know who is currently facing life challenges? 
Who do you know who’s been struggling awhile to reach a goal? 
Who do you know who is in transition and could use some support? 
How many of the key phrases above have you used recently? 
What is your biggest goal? 
What steps are you currently taking to get there? 
What steps are you avoiding?  Why? 
What’s holding you back?

Yelp Reviews from Cyndi’s Coaching Clients:

A Crucial Key to Reaching our Goals

From Rachel Hollis in Girl, Wash Your Face: “When you boil it down, that’s the heart of the problem with my father. He couldn’t understand what to do with a small child, let alone a girl. Since he didn’t understand me, he often unintentionally muted the parts of me that made him uncomfortable.”

A million times I have revisited a moment from when I was 5 years old.  I had been dancing all day, exploring my new found love for music and movement.  I waited excitedly for my father to come home so I could show him how well I danced, because I knew without question that dancing was something I did really well!  I LOVED the way I felt when I moved my body, and I loved the way the music made me feel, and I was one with the Universe and all things when I danced!  I couldn’t wait to share that feeling with him.

My father’s reaction after my one-song recital was, “I guess that will be OK when you’re old enough.”

All I heard was, “You’re not enough.”  I might be enough one day in an OK sort of way, but NOW, in this present moment, I am not enough.

After reading Rachel Hollis, I realize that my dancing made my father uncomfortable.  At five years old, my radiant light shown brightly, and my father marginalized me and made me doubt, because he could – in NO way – relate to my exuberant joy.  

This was a man who angered easily when I didn’t meet the conditions he thought appropriate for a child.  But WHAT was “appropriate” wasn’t defined, and therefore I was always guessing how to behave, trying on new masks I hoped might please him enough to get him to love me, or show affection, or at least set down his beer.  The one mask I dared not wear was Authentic Cindy (I didn’t spell it Cyndi back then) because he had already shown me how displeased he was with, and how unloveable and unworthy of love was Authentic Cindy. 

I learned this because every time I was truly, authentically, exuberantly me, the message I received was vehemently “don’t be that.”  (*Please see side note below.)

The problem with suppressing the authentic self  is that once we realize we can only be truly happy living as our authentic self, it may be hard to recall our authentic self.  It is hidden, buried deep beneath a pile of discarded masks that didn’t fit and didn’t attract the unconditional love we were hoping for.

Unconditional love is what we all seek.  So we bend ourselves like pretzels to meet conditions that might make us lovable in the eyes of others.

The problem with suppressing the authentic self  is that once we realize we can only be truly happy living as our authentic self, it may be fucking SCARY as hell to step back into the authentic self – the role we were born to play.  Because so much energy has been spent trying NOT to be that.  So many thoughts have accumulated telling us that ‘who we truly are’ is unacceptable, unloveable or unworthy.  

Reframing these thoughts will take time, but there may not be anything more important we can do to reach our goals. 

Without the element of self-love, goals for self-care are fruitless. 
We give up making healthy improvements because we believe we’re unworthy or unimportant, or whatever other limiting belief we have learned and integrated.

Reframing these thoughts will take practice but it’s crucial.  I schedule time each day to think my new improved thoughts.  I spent YEARS practicing old thinking patterns, so changing those patterns now takes practice to form new neural pathways.

Reframing these thoughts may require therapy. I certainly needed one-on-one help to see that changing my thoughts about myself was essential to reclaiming the authentic me that I was born to be. A good therapist or counselor can be immensely helpful at restoring self-love and self-care to healthy levels.

I am wild and audacious and loud.  My authentic self is fearless and fails forward without regret.  She is filled with joy that spills out naturally and noisily.

I am done living small because it might make others uncomfortable.  I am done wearing masks to get the approval of others.  Because If I cannot live the full, expansive version of me that I came here to be, then that makes ME uncomfortable.  I will pursue my passions and I will shine my light, and I will help others remember the light inside themselves.

If we want unconditional love (and we do!) then we must love ourselves unconditionally in all our flawsomeness.  We must love the darkness and the light.  We must love our flaws, missteps, and failures and feel entirely worthy despite those perceptions!

Unconditional love starts on the inside.

If we change to gain the approval of others, we will never love ourselves unconditionally.  When we love ourselves every day in all conditions, we don’t need the fucking approval of others.  And when we truly feel love for ourselves no matter what, that is what the world reflects back to us!  

We can stick to our healthy intentions and reach our goals because we know our own value and deeply accept our self-worth.  More people see our authentic, confident selves, and are drawn to our energy and inspired to love themselves unconditionally!

And isn’t THAT what we want from life?  To live deeper self-love, greater confidence, and absolute worthiness while inspiring our fellows to deeper self-love, greater confidence, and absolute worthiness?

I believe it’s what we all want at our core.

Grow on!

What parts of yourself do you mute so that others are not uncomfortable?
What are you telling yourself about that muted part?
What will change for you when you live the life you were born to live?
On a scale of 1 to 10, how much self love do you currently have?
(1 is low and 10 is LOTS)
What will it take to get that to a 10?

*side note – My father was not an bad person.  He was just doing the best he could with what he had to work with.  I hold no resentments for his behavior and understand that those experiences helped shaped me into the AWESOME human being I am today.

DITCH the New Year’s Resolutions!

I am not suggesting that we give up our goals.  Goals are crucial to creating the life we dream of living.  They give destination to the intentions that drive us, and the values that guide us.

Goal = destination.
Intention = driver.
Values = navigation.

All three are crucial when it comes to guiding our lives, so when I suggest that we ditch the new year’s resolutions, it’s not because goals aren’t important, it’s because BIG goals often feel overwhelming or unobtainable.

Daily intentions on the other hand are amazing tools, and weekly and monthly resolutions can also be super helpful because human beings have amazingly short attention spans.

Daily Intentions vs. New Year’s Resolutions

Let’s use one of the most popular new year’s resolutions as an example.  A very large number of people will resolve to lose weight in 2020.  I like to reframe that goal as health improvement through weight reduction, so let’s look at weight reduction as our goal.  

Example Woman wants to reduce her body weight by 40 pounds. 
If she simply uses “I am going to lose 40 pounds” as the New Year’s resolution, statistics suggest that she has an 8% chance of success.  Anyone who has tried to reduce their body weight knows how much effort it can take to drop just 5 pounds.  The full goal can be too big and too non-specific to provide the motivation required over the long term.  If losing 40 pounds is the goal, then seeing that first two or three pounds fall away seems insignificant, when really it’s a HUGE big deal that can be celebrated as the first milestone, and used as a foundation upon which the rest of the goal can be built!

If, on the other hand, Example Woman sets a goal to lose two pounds this week, and supports that goal with daily intentions that align to that goal, her chances of success grow exponentially.  For example, her daily intention might be to avoid desserts and move her body for 20 minutes every day.  Or maybe she chooses to focus her intention on walking 12,000 steps each day, and eating a healthy green salad with dinner instead of buttery potatoes or french fries.  Maybe she’ll choose to simply stop snacking after dinner for 6 nights this week and give up sugary drinks.  Each of these small goals aligns with the bigger, overall goal, and each of them is easier to focus on, and easier to achieve.

Example Woman has three possible outcomes:
1) She reached her goal and has a foundation of success and confidence to motivate her forward. 
2) She achieved partial success and can make small adjustments to do more of what worked and resonated for her, while doing less of what she didn’t enjoy or didn’t seem as effective. 
3) She made no movement toward her goal in which case it is obvious that what she did this week didn’t create the results she wants, so she can adjust the plan to try something different next week.

This process allows more space to review what is being achieved, which pieces of the process are creating the results we crave, which pieces of the process we enjoy (and therefore will be more likely to continue), and which pieces we do not enjoy (and therefore may want to find a different perspective from which to view it, or a different way to approach it entirely.)

Every time we reach that small daily or weekly goal, we’re building confidence in ourselves and our ability to create what we want to create.  Every time we stick to our intentions, even when we don’t feel like it, we build confidence that we can depend on ourselves.  We create the evidence that we always follow through, that we will do something when we say we will.  Our self-esteem grows as we walk our talk and reach our goal.

You know that picture you have in your mind of you standing at whatever finish line you aspire to?  The picture you imagine of you living the results you want to live – whether it’s a novel you are writing and want to publish, or the optimally-functioning, healthy body you are creating & maintaining, or that new language in which you wish to be fluent. You CRUSHING it. You thriving and prospering and happy. Yes, THAT picture.  Take a minute and really SEE it in your mind.  Allow yourself to feel the emotions that will flood you in that moment of triumph. 

The difference between living that picture and having it remain an unfulfilled dream is in how we map our route to get there. For most of us, taking a million baby steps will get us to the BIG goal faster than trying to arrive in one or two giant leaps. 

When  Example Woman reaches her goal of eating a salad daily and increasing her activity level, she can count herself successful even if the number on the scale hasn’t changed yet!  There are myriad factors that contribute to health improvements and weight reduction and they are NOT the same for everyone, so if the goal is to change that number on the scale, and that’s the only marker being used, it can be REALLY frustrating for Example Woman “A” if Example Woman “B” is doing the same things but getting different results just because of her genetics, or the part of her cycle she’s in, or the amount of water she is drinking.

Let the weekly goals be specific and achievable.  We get bonus points if we can make them specific, achievable and FUN! Thinking that physical activity needs to be unenjoyable is a very limiting belief! Open your mind to the infinite possibilities available to us! Make a resolution to try one new activity this week that engages your body.

So ditch the year-long resolutions in favor of short-distance goals paired with daily intentions that support those. You’ve GOT this.  I believe in you.  If I can improve my life one step at a time, anyone can do it.  I believe in us!

Grow on!

What is ONE healthy new habit that you could start doing each day?
(twenty minute walk, more leafy greens, drink water every hour, floss twice, positive affirmations, meditation, the list is endless)
What will change for you when this new activity is a habit?   
What is one habit you could quit today that would have the biggest impact on your health and well-being?

(using tobacco, drinking soda, eating sugar, being sedentary, drinking alcohol, and nail biting are a few that yield quick benefits when released)
What will change for you without this habit?
How much money will you save?

Gremlins on Horseback

Let’s use “horse” as an analogy for whatever new behavior you are trying to integrate into your life.

Every time we try a new “horse” our gremlins get their knickers in a twist.  They HATE letting us outside our comfort zones.  So when we try something new and we fall off the horse, our gremlins grasp the opportunity to kick us while we’re down.  And sometime’s that’s just enough to keep us from climbing back on the horse.  So I am here to reassure you.

Get back on the damn horse! 

It builds confidence and it lets the gremlins know you’re serious about eating healthy, or drinking less, or whatever your particular horse is right now.  It’s OK to fall off the horse!  If you’re a human being, then it’s positively NORMAL to fall off the horse during the holidays.  Most of us revert to practiced behaviors over new ones in times of stress, and there seems to be plenty of perceived stress around finances and family gatherings at the end of the year.

It’s OK.  But don’t let one slip (or a series of them) keep you off the horse!  Our gremlins tell us that we failed because this path was not meant for us, or that we are doomed to fail no matter what, so “why bother?”  

But if it’s something you want, and maybe have been wanting for awhile, then get back on the horse!  

Ask yourself why you fell.  What triggered you to fall off the horse?  What tools might help when that trigger arises in the future?  It’s going to come up again, so what can you choose to do differently next time?

And maybe we stay on the horse a while, and then we get thrown again.  What can we do then?

Get back on the damn horse.  

Research horseback riding.  Get a riding coach.  Read books about how others succeeded in riding this particular horse.  But don’t give up, and don’t listen to the gremlins when they tell you to stay down, never mind, and just forget about it.  Because you deserve to have it and you are capable of creating it!

Christmas visits with family, and holiday celebrations are going to kick a lot of peoples’ well-laid plans in the dirt.  It’s OK.  You’ve GOT this!

Just get back on the horse.  

Fear vs. Faith

Before electric lights and heaters, the long, cold dark of winter practically knit itself into endlessness at winter solstice.  People had to face the dark with fear or with faith.  Winter holy days began being celebrated to bolster our faith in the darkest part of the year, and celebrate the return of the light.  This holiday season, celebrate the return of lightness to your heart!

Fear and faith cannot exist at the same moment because one supplants the other.  So which one do you choose on the regular?

Whichever one you have practiced becomes the vibration that comes naturally.  One reason people seek a life coach is because they have been living in a vibration of fear for the most part, and are ready to trade that vibration for one that feels better.  Worry, doubt, judgement, overwhelm, anxiety, perfectionism, control issues, resentment.  All of these stem from fear.  

I am NOT saying that there is anything wrong with these feelings.  All of them are completely normal for human beings.  What I am saying is that when people experience more of these fear-based emotions than faith-based emotions, it feels pretty crummy.  Some people decide they WANT to feel better than crummy.  Some people get overwhelmed by the slew of negative emotions that keep attracting more fear-based thoughts that bring more icky-feeling emotions.

It is NOT my job (nor my desire) as a coach to tell people that they shouldn’t be having these emotions – quite the contrary!  Emotions are our internal guidance system like our GPS and exist to give us a signal.  All emotions are valid human experiences.  No emotion is “bad.”  It is simply a signal.  Emotions signal to us how we are thinking.  When we think thoughts that do not serve us, and drain our energy – we get a signal in the form of negative emotion.  The signal simply says, “you are having thoughts that drain your energy.”  What a person chooses to DO with that signal (emotion) is completely up to them.

Some people beat themselves up for experiencing negative emotions because they have gotten the idea somehow that negative emotions are bad, and by extension, they are bad for having them.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  

You are not your emotions. 

If you feel angry about something – NORMAL!  If you feel sad about something – NORMAL!  As a life coach, I never try to talk anyone out of experiencing an emotion.  I’m not asking clients to act happy when they do not feel happy.  Coaching is not about ignoring bad-feeling emotions or squashing them down, or sweeping them under the rug, or pretending you don’t have them. Own your emotions!  If you feel sad, it’s totally fine (and healthy) to admit it.  Say it out loud.  “I feel sad.” “I feel angry.”  If you are a human being, then it’s understandable that you WILL experience these emotions sometimes.

The emotions that come up for a person are the emotions that come up.  We cannot control our emotions.  But it is incredibly important to learn how to MANAGE our emotions if we want to exist with other human beings who also have emotions.  Again, this does NOT mean denying the emotion or burying it so as not to ruffle someone’s feathers, because THEIR emotions are THEIR job to manage, and NOT your responsibility.

Managing our emotions means that we allow ourselves to feel the emotion, but we don’t allow our emotions to define us or to spill over onto others.  For example: Experiencing sadness is completely normal & healthy for humans.  Being sad, or becoming sadness, or letting sadness “be” who you are is not normal & healthy.  If someone gets to a point where they feel sadness is a defining characteristic of their life, it will be very helpful to explore this with a therapist or counselor.

Letting the emotions spill over onto others is also a sign that the emotion is taking over, and not being managed.  In other words feeling angry is a normal part of life.  Yelling at others because you feel angry is not.  It means the anger is controlling you, and not the other way round. Again, it will be very helpful to explore this with a therapist or counselor.

Now, some people are going to think that it’s OK to yell at someone if they “made me angry.”  While it may appear that way on the surface, that’s not really what happened.  

When someone says or does something, that something is NOT causing your anger.  The “something” is neutral until you assign it meaning.  And here’s the really cool thing – you can assign any meaning you want!  The way that we assign meaning is by telling ourselves a story about the “something.”  

For example: You spot a friend on a busy street and wave.  You are sure she saw you but she did not wave back.

What does this mean?  Nothing.  But usually the mind will create a story to give it meaning.  And the type of meaning assigned is going to be based on the kinds of thoughts you think on a regular basis.  

If someone tends to have a lot of negative (fear-based) thoughts about others, or (fear-based) thoughts of inadequacy about themselves, the story the mind tells might be something like one of these: “Well she was rude!  How dare she ignore me!” “I know she saw me, why didn’t she wave?  Maybe she’s not really my friend or maybe she heard about what happened the other day!” “What if she doesn’t like me anymore?”  “Well she’s obviously not my friend.  I guess I can delete her number.”

If someone tends toward more positive (faith-based) thoughts, the story the mind tells might be something more like one of these: “Wow she must have been really distracted to not even see me here!”  “We’ll have a good laugh next time we talk when I tell her I saw her but she didn’t see me!”  

Nothing has meaning until the human brain attaches a story to it, so pick your stories wisely so instead of depleting your energy, and leaving you full of fear or worry, they add value to your life & build your faith!

Fear-based thoughts drain energy.  Faith-based thoughts boost your energy, or at least don’t diminish your energy.  And you get to choose!  If you tend toward a habit of fear-based thinking, you may find your energy depleted a LOT. 

It takes practice to retrain your brain, but reclaiming your energy is worth the try!

Grow on!

What fear-based thoughts are you entertaining?
How do they affect your energy?
What faith-based thoughts come easily?
What affect do these have on your energy?
What will change for you when you shift to more faith-based thinking?