That Wasn’t Necessary

I love discovering situations around which I have some practiced thoughts and beliefs that are not helping me be the person I want to be, or create the life I want to create. Because if you don’t know the negative catabolic thoughts, feelings, and beliefs are there, you can’t change them.

Saturday morning provided me the opportunity to come face-to-face with negative expectations, fear, and prescribed beliefs—and to make different choices.

Buffy (left) and Willow

For those of you who know me or read this blog regularly, you know that my husband and I have two dogs and two cats who truly are our children. Buffy, the oldest of our two Keeshonden, will be turning 10 on July 13.

Buffy is a bit of a trash mouth, meaning if something hits the floor, she eats it. As we stroll through the park, she’s trying to grab bites of weeds along the path. She’s a dirt connoisseur.

So it was a bit surprising, but not terribly unusual, to wake up Saturday morning and find some evidence that she had expelled something nasty in the night. We cleaned it up and didn’t think more of it.

While I was writing my blog, she threw up breakfast. While I was upstairs working out, she threw up again. When my husband found that she had thrown up yet again, I discovered her having dry heaves and shivering. We knew something was seriously wrong and called the emergency vet who said to bring her right in.

What’s the best mindset for heading to the emergency vet—or dealing with any difficult situation? While it’s probably the most common reaction, I would suggest that it’s not fear and jumping to the worst case scenario.

You might be thinking, “Come on. You were at the emergency vet. Of course that’s scary.”

As Bruce Schneider says, “Normal does not mean necessary.”

That was my opportunity. To shift how I responded to the situation from fear to being more focused on my compassion for Buffy, my confidence in the care she was getting, my allowing the situation to unfold, and my responding to what was rather than what might be.

I’ll admit that it was a bit of an internal Ping-Pong match all afternoon. Fear and worry was shifted to consciously choosing to be present and compassionate in order to give the best possible support to Buffy. Anger that it was taking so long was shifted to compassion for the more serious injuries that were being seen ahead of us, and gratitude to the caring and professional staff.

How we show up in every situation is a choice. That doesn’t mean it’s easy, particularly if we have some long-standing beliefs about “bad” situations. But thoughts, feelings, and beliefs are made of energy, not marble. If they are not moving you where you want to go, you do have the power to change them.

I know that it was better for Buffy, David, and me when I was being present, confident in her well-being and in the veterinarians, and appreciative of the care and service we were receiving compared to the moments when I was fearful, doubting, and worried.

We don’t know for sure what Buffy got in to. All the tests they ran turned out to be negative. After a massive shot of antibiotics and ant-nausea medicine, we were able to bring her home, where she’s been enjoying some TLC and a special diet that she seems to think is a treat. In this instance, all that stress and worry truly was unnecessary.

If this happens again, my goal is to stay present and optimistic, and to choose my responses based on what is happening, rather than what I fear might happen. Each time I show up in a challenging situation a little more like who I want to be, the more I will be that person.

What can you do to let go of fear, doubt, and worry in a situation where you might automatically have those responses? How does your making a different choice impact those around you? What’s the benefit of your showing up more consistently as the person you want to be?

Together we can do it!

 

Photo by Hansje Gold-Kreuck

The Options are Overwhelming!

The feeling of being overwhelmed is negative, catabolic energy. For me, it’s victim energy.

It’s the feeling that things are spinning out of control and I can’t do enough fast enough to meet all my goals or other people’s expectations. It is being at the effect of things instead of recognizing that I have complete control of my life and how I respond to each situation, and that I have the support of All-That-Is (God, the Universe, Source Energy, Higher Coach—whatever works for you) in everything I do.

There can be a lot of self-judgment in it, and may include looking at myself through other people’s eyes and seeing all the things I “should” be doing from anyone’s perspective but my own.

Feeling overwhelmed may be different for you—how we interpret emotions is as unique as we are—but my guess is that no matter how it feels to you, it’s not very pleasant.

We can feel overwhelmed when we’re trying to process new information, make a decision, meet a deadline, etc., etc. Trying to force action while we’re feeling this catabolic emotion often doesn’t result in a satisfactory conclusion or outcome because you just can’t see where you’re going very clearly.

One of the best things to do when you catch yourself feeling overwhelmed is often the last thing you feel like you can do—STOP what you are doing.

Taking 15 minutes to breathe deeply, meditate, pray, go for a walk, think about the beach—whatever it is that brings you a sense of relief and helps you calm your mind—will more than pay for itself in productivity later.

Another way to step off that crazy train is to let go of judging your feeling as either good or bad. It is just where you are on your journey, and every experience along the way gives us valuable information about Who we are and Who we want to become.

Once you have regained some mental and emotional clarity, you can then more confidently choose the direction you want to go.

What can you do differently the next time you feel overwhelmed that will help you gain some clarity on where you want to go? What difference does that make to your overall productivity, and to the results you’re achieving?

Together we can do it!

 

Photo from www.freedigitalphotos.net

 

How Are You Showing Up?

I think the Universe was priming me yesterday when I wrote my blog about stress eating. Fortunately, I didn’t turn to food when I took a huge stress hit.

That hit was being told that I’m not showing up in a work situation in a way that reflects my absolute strongest core values and beliefs. Talk about taking a sucker-punch to the heart!

After meditating at lunch and much focus throughout the afternoon, I was able to shift my thoughts and perspective on this a little bit, but I still had a pretty sleepless night. As a result, when the alarm went off at 4:30 a.m., I lay there and thought about skipping my workout and sleeping in. I even thought about skipping my blog and just re-running an older post.

But I recognized that using this as an excuse for not showing up as Who I truly am in every area of my life is the exact opposite of the reaction I want to have. And what I want is to use this situation as an opportunity to be even better.

Getting up and facing my day also helped me realize that I’d had some clarity arrive in the night.

Number one is that this does not mean I’m a bad person. I know Who I am and I know that my values and beliefs were intact and being demonstrated—even if someone else made a value-judgment on how they interpreted my words or actions.

Now does this mean that I was showing up as my best self? Absolutely not. And this is where I have the opportunity for growth. In my blog yesterday, I confessed that deadlines make me feel overwhelmed and frustrated—clearly I have some negative catabolic energy going on. One of the unfortunate consequences of being in a carbolic place is that the repercussions are not just the negative emotions you feel.

When I’m under the gun, I have no doubt that I’m efficient and direct, something that could easily be interpreted as a values affront to someone else—something I would never mean or intend. If that’s not incentive to clean up my thoughts, feelings, and beliefs around deadlines and workload so that I am showing up with more anabolic energy, I don’t know what is.

I also recognize that communication is a two-way street. One of the ways that I can be a better version of myself is to work to open up that communication to get the discussion out of the value judgments and into specifics about what it is they’re looking for from me, and how we can avoid assumptions and interpretations in the future.

Another element of this is that the complaint lodged against me is the same one that has been lodged against everyone in my position. I had stepped into some preexisting catabolic victim-energy without realizing it. Had I not been in my own stress mode, I might have recognized this sooner and consciously chosen a different way to interact.

This long-stranding energy may mean that no matter what changes I make to show up more authentically, their perspective might not change. And I have to be OK with that. The only person I have control over is me—and it is my intention to be the best version of me that I can be in all areas of my life.

Striving to be the best possible version of you doesn’t mean there won’t’ be challenges. What’s different is that you take them as opportunities to be even better.

What can you do today to recognize that negative, catabolic emotions are a sign that you may not be showing up as the best possible version of you? How can you begin to be more in alignment with Who you really are?

Together we can do it!

Relax! You’re Exactly Where You’re Supposed to Be

Many years ago when my husband was learning how to brew beer, he followed a book called, “The New Complete Joy of Home Brewing,” by Charlie Papazian. Anytime the instructions got complex or the process might be overwhelming, Papazian would throw in, “Relax. Don’t worry. Have a homebrew.

During his first few batches of beer, I heard David use that mantra a lot!

While I’m not advocating drinking (unless it’s part of your personal optimal-wellness plan), I am encouraging the mindset—relax and focus on the positive.

Working to get fitter? Relax! Enjoy moving your body.

Want a new job? Relax! The perfect path is unfolding.

Want to be more spiritual? Relax! Enjoy your meditation.

Taking the emotional pressure off doesn’t mean you are shirking your responsibilities or not doing the work. With beer brewing, it didn’t mean getting so relaxed you skipped washing the bottles or bucket—not a particularly fun job, but very important to the process. It meant relax, wash the bottles and bucket. Do your best but don’t stress about it being perfect.

Relax and focus on the positive means trusting in the process more, allowing constructive anabolic energy to help you engage in what you are doing in the moment, and tapping into the support of the Universe (God, All-That-Is, Source Energy, Higher Coach—whatever works for you.)

While focus is important to meeting your goals, stress, worry, and disbelief generate destructive catabolic emotion that can hold you back or limit your success, make you quit before you reach the summit, or at the very least make the process a lot more painful.

So relax! Take life less seriously.

Relax! Ease up on yourself and others.

Relax! Make the process fun.

Relax! Laugh and make light of life.

Relax! You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be.

What can you do today to remind yourself to relax and focus on the positive? What difference does that make in your ability to move forward?

Together we can do it!

 

Photo by Ambro/freedigitalphotos.net

 

Link

We all know that stress has an impact on our health, relationships, and general wellbeing, but what is stress and what, if anything, can we do about it? As I’m headed out of town for the weekend, I wanted to share a recent blog that Leadership and Parent Coach Diane Dempster wrote for the Impact ADHD Parenting Community that shares some great information on what stress is, how it impacts us, and how to manage it.

 

The other day, while I was preparing the presentation for an upcoming event, I began to notice an interesting and familiar phenomenon. I started to get a little anxious! Before I knew it, I was over-thinking, over-trying and over-doing. Ultimately, I got to the last minute before my deadline and sti…