The past few months have felt like an early winter hibernation, with a reasonably mild autumn here in Melbourne. Usually the winter months are when we seek to withdraw from the world and hibernate, but the recent world events have changed all that.
Self isolation and social distancing have become the new “normal” and it has been a wonderful opportunity to review what’s working and what’s not. Hibernation is a time of withdrawal after gathering together the summer fruits. During hibernation we can set the intent to release old, unhelpful beliefs and heal the old “stuck stuff”. Meditation will help you to re-evaluate and move into a new and better vision for the future. Choosing to be grateful for what you have also helps you to be open to even more.
Hypnotherapy will help you to release those stubborn, subconscious blocks that you didn’t realize you had. This is a time of opportunity to create new ways of thinking, not only for yourself but in the wider community. It can be difficult at times to know where to start, but all you need is the kernel of an idea. Much like an acorn, with the right environment and nourishment, it will grow into a mighty oak. This could be the start of something big for you too.
It is accepted that IQ – the Intelligence Quotient – is fixed. You either have it or not. But Emotional Intelligence can be learned and that is why it is important to differentiate between an inherent weakness and vulnerability. To diverge slightly…. when I was training to become a homeopath, we learned that if you remove the cause (eg: poor sanitation) then health outcomes improve. When there are lifestyle changes made: such as choosing healthy foods, one’s vulnerability to poor health or disease is lessened. Likewise with Emotional Intelligence Coaching: if you identify the vulnerability and remove or change the contributing factors, the possibilities are endless. There may be some adjustments to be made – both in mindset and in the physical body and it is similar to the aches and pains felt after starting a new workout at the gym as the muscles get stretched and adjust to new levels of fitness.
In my search for Emotional Intelligence related meanings I came across an article that described four types of vulnerability:
For instance, the dictionary definition of vulnerability states that there is “a capability or susceptibility to being wounded or hurt” which implies that it is a possibility, not necessarily a given that something will happen. Whereas weakness in one definition that I came across, is portrayed as “a disadvantage or fault” often of character or a lack of determination.
Emotional Intelligence is not only being aware of your own emotional responses to a myriad of situations, but also being cognizant of the emotions of those around you. It’s how you manage your behavior, how optimistic or resilient you are and how you manage your stress. In your relationships, whether they are personal, social or business – it’s about how you communicate, manage conflict, build team bonds or inspire others to lead.
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Recently I found that I wasn’t listening as well as I should. Quite apart from the slight deafness that has come about after decades of poor fitting motorcycle helmets.
I came to realize that in some of my conversations with colleagues that I was interrupting their conversations. It doesn’t help that my mind races at a million miles per hour when I am in a creative moment, but it is important for me, as a therapist, to correct that behaviour.
When training to become a homeopath, it was instilled in us that “a case well taken, is a case likely to succeed” and this meant not only asking the right questions, but listening carefully to the replies. Or what was not said. In homeopathy there is what is called a PQRS – peculiar, queer(it had a very different meaning back a couple of centuries ago), rare and strange symptom. This will be so different to the usual symptoms of a complaint that it will often lead directly to a remedy.
Similarly in coaching and hypnotherapy, listening carefully to the client will often result in an intuitive response that leads to great insights. Intuition is enhanced by taking time to still your own mind and stop those thoughts or impulsive answers. As the mind chatter subsides you can also become aware of your own, considered responses. Ask yourself “Is my language positive?”
A great acronym to remember is THINK –
Who are you?
There may have been periods in your life where you have played a different role according to various situations.
As you grew from young child to adult there would be many defining moments that shaped your identity.
Deep down, how do you define yourself?
What are you really like?
As you progressed through adolescence, it is possible that you tried on different character traits as you modeled yourself on peers or adults that surrounded you. When one fitted in with your beliefs, like a well made coat, you kept it. Even the most well made coat can become threadbare with constant use over the years and beliefs can also be outgrown or no longer serve us well.
Another of my envelope jottings looked at intention and how reflective practices can lead to some amazing solutions.
When you set an intention use the “rule of three”. Firstly examine what it is that you want, secondly observe what is important to you about this intention and thirdly look at what your ideal outcome is likely to be.
As you go deeper and expand upon your what your intended outcome will bring, it is advantageous to reflect on what will it do for you when you get it.
Time is a precious commodity and I was reading recently how we have constructed the concept of time – measuring it in seconds, minutes, hours….. etc.
Time seems to speed up as we are engrossed or having fun and who hasn’t felt time march by so slowly when we are bored?
Then there are those occasions when we can feel like time has been stolen from us. I’ll give an example. I was looking forward to attending a professional development meeting recently, where the speaker was to give a presentation on storytelling. As this is something that interests me, having already been to a workshop on storytelling and I was keen to find out more.
I traveled to the event with a colleague and were lucky to find a seat in the front row and waited for the pearls of wisdom to drop into our laps. Various topics were talked about but the content didn’t match what was advertised.
Time began to drag as political and social opinions were brought up. A “case study” was distributed and time slowed further…. I couldn’t walk out. Front row. Presentation being filmed. Passenger to take home.
My attention turned to the paper that the case study was printed on. A rectangle, folded to a square and hey presto! Time started to pass more easily as my fingers folded and unfolded this paper to create an origami crane. Settling what I hoped was a look of attention on my face, the remaining paper was also folded to two more, smaller squares and Mother Crane now had two chicks…. quite apt for the metaphor of the birds the presenter used in his case study.
A couple of days later, I eagerly looked forward to a webinar replay that I had signed up for as the time clashed with the aforesaid presentation. It took a little while to begin the topic and this presenter allowed herself to be interrupted by people coming on line and typing comments. About then I started to have the feeling that this too was stealing time. Fortunately the replay came with a fast forward button and I was able to move on.
As a person who presents regular workshops, both events have been a valuable teaching tool. Plan the presentation. Talk about what you said you are going to. Be aware of your body language and tonality whilst presenting. Be present and focus on the topic and if it meant to be educational, deliver awesome content.
With the New Moon coming up at the end of the week, my thoughts have turned to how I might prepare my monthly vision page. As this is the first New Moon of the new financial year I have decided to structure it a little differently to usual and will approach it similarly to a self coaching session. It will be interesting to see if the results are different as I sit down after a meditation session and journal my answers to the following questions:
What do I want for the month ahead of this New Moon? I’m going to keep the language positive and in the present, recording my intentions on my vision page. I may or may not create a Q & A table to order my thoughts, but it is highly probable that I may create a page that looks more like a mind map as I am quite visual.
I might create a page around the “W” questions…What? Where? When? Who? and write the answers accordingly.
- What do I want to change in the month ahead of the New Moon?
- Who can help me achieve this change? Does it depend on me alone or can I ask for help?
- Do I have an outcome in mind when I make these changes? By stating my outcome in positive language, my brain is more likely to accept the changes and turn the goals into reality
- What do I want to achieve? Saying what I DO want will help me focus on a positive outcome and it’s important to make this about something for me and not what others might want me to do.
- What action do I need to take to make these changes? A vision will remain just a dream unless there is action.
- When will I take action to make these changes? If I want to write a book, then my first step would be to set a realistic time frame and to create some space on a daily basis to do some writing.
- Will achieving the goals for this month have a bearing on my long term goals? As the Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu said “Every journey starts with a single step”. By achieving small and realistic goals, we begin to feel more confident
A valuable part of the process is ensuring that my outcomes for the month will be realistic and achievable. In addition I’m going to make my page as multi sensory as possible- using visual, auditory and kinaesthetic language. What do I see, hear or feel about my vision for the month ahead?
If you would like more help in creating your Vision Book and regular pages or for more information about Coaching, follow THIS link
Create a mindset for success.
Have a list of your goals, the action steps and your alternative plan somewhere where you can readily review them. As you move closer to success and progress to your ultimate goal, regularly review your goals. Ask yourself the following question: “What would I do if this step didn’t work?”
Success also depends on your focus.
- How committed are you to the goals you have set, regardless of the obstacles that may pop up in your way? By focusing on the goal and making it the most important thing in your life (for now) you must learn to ignore your inner critic by taking consistent action. Let go of the final outcome and focus on your journey.
Evaluate your progress and make a note of what is working for you and what’s not.
- Is there room for improvement?
- Do you need to change your approach? Evaluate your original plan and notice if it is still relevant and even more important, once you have reached your ultimate goal….
- What’s next?
Start planning for your next goal following these five steps to success!
Did you miss the success tips?
Here they are briefly:
- Create a mindset for success
- List your goals
- Action steps
- Have a Plan B
- Review regularly
If you would like more information on coaching or any of the other services that I offer, fill in the contact form below.
There is a difference between setting a goal and achieving that same goal.
The idea of setting a goal is to move you from one place (usually “stuck”) to another. If you don’t know the way, you may well get lost or easily sidetracked, but if you have a map, even a rudimentary one or an ancient one – well used, you will get there more easily.
You may need to adjust your journey according to the conditions at the time.
For me to set a goal, I also need to include some measure of flexibility. The first thing to think about when setting a goal is where do you want to go to or achieve?
To achieve your goal you need to follow some specific steps.
Seems simple enough, but let me share some steps that I use with coaching clients with you to make it easier. Traditional and specific ways of setting a goal that I have found useful are based on using the following prompts:
- When – setting a date for when you want to achieve your goal
- What – what exactly do you want? State this in the present tense so that your subconscious mind registers the goal “as if” the goal has been achieved.
- Where – if you are looking for a new house or a job, where do you want it to be?
- How – how will you achieve your goal?
- Who – do you have anyone to help you achieve your goals? Who can you enlist to be accountable?
- Why – What are the benefits to YOU for achieving your goals?
To be continued….
What is metaphor?
It’s a way of speaking that uses words or pictures to describe something in a symbolic way.
At the workshop I presented at today, I used both words and pictures as metaphors to bypass the conscious mind. This was to get the participants thinking more deeply about their EQ or emotional intelligence in regard to how much balance (or not) is in their lives.
Without giving too much away…. and because I’m planning on repeating the workshop quite soon, I asked them to think about what tools that they might have on hand to apply in various situations.
Using a variety of photos, including that of my own toolbox, we segued into how they might successfully navigate situations or people using various Emotional Intelligence strategies.
My real toolbox contains a good selection of Homeopathic remedies. Many years ago I used to take it on home visits for some clients who had children diagnosed with ADHD. Much easier than having a bored and disruptive child confined in an office and a wonderful way to observe their behaviours in their natural habitat!
The metaphoric toolbox
This contains various tools that can be used to change perception of self or situations. These tools enable one to respond rapidly to changing situations or to be creative and innovative in an approach to new or novel ideas.
Setting life goals is much like having a garden. You’ve designed the garden beds, carefully planned where the trees have been placed and planted a variety of plants – perhaps even a lawn area. But the work doesn’t stop here. The lawn needs to be mowed on a regular basis. The plants need to be tended and occasionally, plants such as roses need to be pruned to produce the next seasons lush growth.
And so it is with life goals. You’ve planned the goals, placed a few key elements to stand out. All this needs maintenance and constant action to keep the momentum to get the end result. Along the way you may encounter a prickly person or what you thought was a beautiful flower which turns out to be a weed and needs to be removed.
With no way of knowing their story, a metaphor can be transformative to many people as they apply and adapt it to their own life experience or goals and bring about an inner awareness of their own strengths or weaknesses.