Hello, 2017! Transitioning into the new year ...


Hello, 2017! Transitioning into the new year ...

Wrapping up the old year and starting a new one with conscious intent can be a powerful process, and it doesn’t have to be a big deal. For this reason, I’d like to offer you two simple ways to usher in a more intentional and light-hearted 2017 … 

#1: Choose two words

The most beautifully simple way I know to find closure for this year and move bravely on, is to take just a few minutes to decide on two words: 
1. One word to define what happened in 2016. 
2. One word to define your guiding intent for 2017. 

The beauty of this exercise is that it side-steps all the fluff, and asks you to get to the guts of things. 

Coaching tip: One sure-fire way to sabotage your ability to live with intent, is by making the things you want for yourself so big and heavy that they overwhelm rather than inspire. 

Be sure, therefore, to choose a 2017 word/intent that brings you joy (not stress) and a sense of lightness (not weight). Feel into it, and realise that sometimes the very best thing you can do for yourself is to let go of certain weighty expectations that have been dragging you down. 

My example: For 2016, the word I’ve chosen for myself is ‘Roots.’

Despite my well-laid plans to ‘do more’ in 2016, it was a year rich with introspection and inner work. Looking back, I actually did need that time to ground myself amidst the craziness of the world, and the word Roots is an acknowledgement of my growing ability to stay centred and upright amidst the chaos. 

My intent for 2017 is ‘Blossom.’

I didn’t like this word at first, with my immediate response being, ‘How cheesy!’ It kept coming back into my head, however, and on reflection, it is really the best word to guide me through the coming year.

Why? The opening of a blossom comes naturally. It’s a word that speaks to the ease which can come when I step into the flow of life, rather than continually struggling against it, and is also a great reminder to my introvert self that there is a lot of joy to be had from sharing my knowledge and ideas with a wider audience. 

#2: Make a joyful promise to yourself

In place of your usual New Years resolutions this year, why not choose to make a promise to yourself that will actively bring you joy? 

For example: 
  - I promise to love my friends more and to pay more attention to the things that are important to them
  - I promise to find something to laugh about when I’m feeling low
  - I promise to really enjoy cake every time I eat it
  - I promise to look into my partners eyes more, and notice new things about them each day
  - I promise to sing louder and more bodaciously every time I’m in the shower
  - I promise to speak my mind more, and learn to deal with the consequences

Coaching tip: The most important thing here is your own sense of self-connection. What brings YOU joy will not be the same thing that brings someone else joy. Moreover, what brings you joy TODAY, will not be the same thing that brought you joy last year, last month, or even yesterday! Feel into it, and only make promises that feel truly joyful and free. 

My Example: my promise is to myself this year is to put time and effort into making our family meals more varied, fun, and delicious! It took me a while to settle on this one, since my analytical mind kept insisting that I focus all my energy on my coaching business and life purpose!

When I sat honestly with myself, however, the thought of spending even more time on my coaching business this year left me feeling heavy. After letting go of that, it then dawned on me that since I’ve had Arno (my toddler) and started my business, I’ve really dropped the ball on what used to be a huuuuge passion of mine: AMAZINGLY GOOD FOOD!

The boring and rushed meals I’ve been creating lately have really been sapping my energy, and if I look at my quality of life, improving mealtimes is actually the best investment of my time right now. What a surprise! 

Coaching offerings in the New Year

If you are interested in being coached, now is a great time to start! Starting January 9th through to the end of February, I’m offering some significant discounts on my coaching services. 

Clarity Booster: 2 sessions for $199 (save $50)

Clear the cobwebs of thought and confusion that have been blocking you from seeing the bigger picture of your life. Get the support you need to shift gears, and start 2017 with a clearer, more empowered perspective. 

To claim this discount, contact me here. 

Time for a change: Sign up for 4 or more sessions and receive 1 session free (save $125)

If there is a specific behaviour, situation, or lingering emotion in your life that you’ve been wanting to shift, now is your chance. Come into a deeper connection with yourself, learn how to create positive feedback loops in your mind and emotions, and shift your behaviour into a new direction with my support. 

To claim this discount, contact me today. 

Break Through to You Great Story Programme: 30% discount

I’m truly excited to offer this revolutionary Break Through coaching programme in 2017. This is the programme for you if you would like to : 

  • Understand the genesis of repeated self-sabotaging thoughts, feelings, and behaviours, and how to bust past them, permanently.
  • Identify the powerful hidden passions you've been unconsciously sliding around your entire life. 
  • Create a brighter future for yourself by shifting your daily habits, mindset, and beliefs.  

Learn more about the programme here. 

Wishing you much love and a joyous New Year. Bring it on 2017!

 - Liz


Thoughts on the Republican/Democrat Divide


Thoughts on the Republican/Democrat Divide

Things I have learnt about people (mostly from arguing with my father <3 )

  • You don't change a person's mind by labelling or judging them as wrong (and boy is my Dad wrong sometimes!)
  • Being morally righteous (even if you are right, which I usually am ;-) ) will leave you alone in the corner, talking to yourself
  • The most important thing is your relationship. Your relationship is much much MUCH more important than facts. Without a solid relationship, facts become irrelevant. Or worse, they become weapons used to hurt and deny. 
  • The only way to heal a relationship is to let go of your need to control or convince the other person. They will never do what you want. The more you try, the more you are disrespecting them as a person, and the worse your relationship will get. 
  • Righteousness always feels good at the time, but it makes everything worse in the long run. 
  • The only way forward *together* is by taking a step towards the other person. Sometimes this feels like a step back, but it is not. It is a step together.
  • We don't get to choose our family or our country(wo)men. We only get to choose how we relate to them.

Heal the relationship first. Do the work of bridging the divide. Only THEN can we start to work towards the ideals we all hold so dear ... as far as I can see, this is the only way forward. To let ourselves feel hate and fear, yes, but then to learn to set it aside and realize that on the strength of our human relationships with each other, we can move forward together ... 

Also: Omg, Trump is president. What the fuck? 




Things to stop beating yourself up for (Part 2)

Here is Part 2 of my 'Things to stop beating yourself up for’ series (read Part 1 here) ... 

Stop beating yourself up for doing the same thing over and over, even though you know better. 

I’ll say it before and I’ll say it again: Human beings are complex, networked systems. 

A common reason why we as humans keep doing something even though we 'know better', is that only one PART of ourselves (usually our analytical brain) knows better, while the rest of our parts (our body, hormones, emotions, imagination, etc.) are still operating out of the status quo (usually the ingrained patterns of our youth and upbringing). 

A good example of this is emotional eating. We might tell ourselves on a surface level: 'I want to be healthy. I should eat more greens. Mmmmm, salad!’

Mmmm ... that was a tasty salad ... 

Mmmm ... that was a tasty salad ... 

However, we don’t. We go home and eat chocolate instead. 

And 'Bad person! Bad!’ we say, and feel terrible about ourselves ... which often leads to more chocolate-eating, and then 'Bad. Bad. Bad!’ and so on into a cycle of negativity that can become an unhealthy norm. 

However, instead of feeling bad and beating yourself up for eating things you shouldn't, what if you just got curious?

Because in truth, when we can't stop doing something we want to stop doing, it's not because we are bad or useless or lacking in will ... it is because there is some important unconscious/human need within us that is being ignored or denied. 

Ease up. It's not actually about the salad (or the chocolate)

Ease up. It's not actually about the salad (or the chocolate)

For example, our compulsion to eat chocolate might stem from the fact that our life is really stressful!

In stress, our parasympathetic nervous system activates a number of complex physiological responses, including an overwhelming physical urge to binge on sugar and fatty foods. (Basically, our stress-induced cave-man brain is preparing for disaster and potential famine). 

Working with our body instead of against it in this situation would mean setting down the need to beat ourselves up for eating bad foods, and acting to reduce the stress in our life instead.

Alternatively, it might mean learning some new coping-with-stress skills other than binging on food. OR, it might even mean simply allowing ourselves to eat badly during the stressful times in our lives, and then getting back into a healthy lifestyle once the stress dies down. 

What I’m trying to point out here is that when we step out of the cycle of self-judgement, and engage instead with a sense of curiosity around our naturally occurring needs and impulses, then we open up a whole range of new choices that will allow us to live a more enjoyable life.

Other examples of common ‘failings’ that people like to beat themselves up for are: 

  •  We beat ourselves up for procrastinating on work we should be doing. 
  •  We beat ourselves up for going on the internet too much. 
  •  We beat ourselves up for not being more organised. 
  •  We beat ourselves up for having emotional outbursts.  

So what if, instead of beating yourself up, you got curious?

You might find some interesting things about yourself. For example: 

  • Perhaps you aren’t motivated to work because your current work project is not aligned with your deeply held values and goals. 
  • Perhaps you go on the internet too much because you’re feeling lonely, and are missing a sense of companionship and camaraderie in your life. 
  • Perhaps you can't get organised because you are, in fact, really fucking bored with your current routine and desperately need new input and inspiration!
  • Perhaps your emotional outburst was because your personal boundaries are being continually crossed by someone important in your life, and you are feeling a lot of frustration and pain. 
Why can't I be more productive at work? Oh, that's right, because my soul dies a little every time I attend a staff meeting

Why can't I be more productive at work? Oh, that's right, because my soul dies a little every time I attend a staff meeting

Part of the trick here is to give yourself permission to have your own preferences, values, desires, and weaknesses, instead of continually requiring yourself to fit into outward ideals of success or social correctness.

Start to realise that the problem here is not the fact that you can't change. The problem is your own disconnect from your own personal desires and needs.  

If you review the bulleted list above, for example, you can see that often the causes of our bad behaviour are actually the things that make life worth living: our deeply held values, the urge to share our lives with other humans, the need for excitement and inspiration, and the need to uphold our own personal boundaries and sense of self-respect. 

Connecting with THESE things instead of beating yourself up for the bad behaviour itself, is going to be your key to creating the kind of life that truly makes you happy.

Whether or not you feel able to DO anything about it just yet, becoming aware of your internal resistances is an important first step into understanding who you are and what you want out of life. 

So what to do next time you find yourself doing the same thing over and over, even though you know you shouldn't?

Get curious!

Start getting really interested in those places in your life where you feel stuck.

Allow yourself to be present to what is there within you WITHOUT JUDGEMENT (or when you can't help but judge, allow yourself to let go of the judgement and move on).

Start to open your mind to the fact that the core of that ‘silly’ behaviour will be an important aspect of yourself/your life that you have been ignoring or repressing up until now … 

And if you need any help along the way, don’t hesitate to get in touch!

 With love, 
 - Liz


Things to stop beating yourself up for (Part 1)


Things to stop beating yourself up for (Part 1)

You know what you should do? You should eat better, exercise more, be more productive, feel better, do more … oh, and you should do it NOW, or perhaps in 30 days or less. And be ecstatically happy while doing it, of course ... 

However, you can’t, can you? And why the hell not? 

Because you’re human. 

Not because you are weak, or because you are not good enough, or because your parents failed you, or because you're lacking the right technique. Nope. 

It’s because you're not a robot. You are instead, a magnificently complex, human being.

You are a sophisticated social creature, who needs support, care, and attention in order to shift gears. You are made of flesh and blood and chemicals and synapses, which cannot be simply reprogrammed on a whim. 

And exactly because you are not a robot, I've decided to start a blog series called 'Things to stop beating yourself up for.'

Here's number one ... 

Stop beating yourself because you can't ‘just do it’

Studies have shown that it takes smokers an average of seven attempts to quit smoking before they are able to finally quit for good.

Interesting right? 

Now imagine if we started using the number seven as a baseline? Not just with smoking, but with anything you wanted to achieve in your life – with being confident, making friends, eating healthier ... or following your purpose. 

Imagine if you gave yourself at least seven chances to try and fail before you were even allowed to think about doubting yourself?

(And remember, the number seven here is just an average, meaning sometimes it will be less, and sometimes much more). 

How often have you rushed in to condemn yourself because you didn’t manage to do something on the first, or second, or fourth, or sixth try? 

Imagine what might be different in your life, if instead of seeing your struggles as failure, you simply offered yourself more time, more attention, and more care as you followed through on the process of change?

The consequence ... 

Everything has a consequence. The consequence of acknowledging the interminable, failure-ridden reality of human change means ... that you are left with no excuses NOT to change. 

Now. This is the REAL challenge. Because the truth is, a huge reason why we choose to beat ourselves up instead of simply buckling down and sticking with it for the long haul, is that change is difficult. Change is hard.

You are not your doubt. It's just a habit you picked up along the way. 

You are not your doubt. It's just a habit you picked up along the way. 

I see this again and again in my practice. Clients come in telling me they can’t change. When we overcome their blocks, however, and get them into a space where they could change if they wanted ... they still hold back. 

Why? Because staying the same (even if that same is very painful) is comfortable and known.

After steeping in a sense of struggle and doubt for many years, those constrictive feelings actually begin to feel safe. 

In comparison, the gear shift that happens when we start to move in a different direction ... into optimism, hope, positivity, and empowered action ... now that's just plain frightening. 

So just notice that. Once you start leaning into the reality that change takes time ... once you stop beating yourself up for not being faster ... once you start offering yourself support when you fail rather than condemnation ... things will start to open up. They will start to feel different. Frightening, strange, new. 

And the mistake to avoid in this moment of newness, is to turn back to what you know because it feels more comfortable – to retreat into the fuzz of confusion and self-doubt and same-old-same-old because it feels more familiar to you than the outrageous openess of clarity and hope.

Don't  beat yourself up for being fearful, support yourself through the fear instead

Don't  beat yourself up for being fearful, support yourself through the fear instead

What I've come to see as a coach is that the real work I do with my clients is not in overcoming their blocks.

Overcoming blocks does take attention and time, but if you are willing to get curious and hope, then it really comes down to engaging with those seven times, and adjusting what is not working each go.

What I've come to see as my real work comes afterwards ... in supporting my clients through that exhilarating moment where they get to ask the question themselves: now that I'm free of my self-doubt, what should I do next?