Too Afraid to Want What You Want!

 

The possibilities are numerous once we decide to act and not react.

George Bernard Shaw

 

Todd hired me because he wanted guidance as he searched for a new job. The financial situation at his company is such that he doesn’t see room for either advancement or a raise and he doesn’t want to be stuck on a Titanic.

 

He works in the entertainment industry as a technical manager at an editing production house. He’s been at it long enough that his knowledge and expertise put him in a valued position.

 

For several months he’s been going through a series of interviews at a major Studio.  After each one, he’s been encouraged that “the job” is going to be offered to him.

 

However, in an odd twist, his fifth interview was with an executive who admitted he didn’t know what job he was interviewing Todd for!

 

At the end, the guy assured Todd that he seemed like a perfect fit – even though he couldn’t say for certain what the job was.

 

He told Todd that someone from HR would contact him shortly.

 

Todd realized that with each successive interview, he was becoming more confused as to the job he was a “shoe-in” for.

 

Ten days went by without a word. So, he called his contact and explained that he’s going on vacation and would like to know what’s up before heading out of town.

 

His contact asked him to call when he got back because for sure he’ll have good news then.

 

Todd told me that he’s not going to call; he’s fed up and if they want him, they’ll call.

 

But there’s more.

 

Todd admitted he doesn’t want them to offer him a job – whatever the job might be!

 

Intellectually, he wants “the” job, but emotionally he doesn’t.

 

He likes his job, he likes the power and influence he has and he’s afraid to lose it, but because the company’s in a financial mess he feels he should move on.

 

If the Studio says, “No,” then he’ll be happy because he can reassure himself that he tried.

 

If the Studio says, “Yes,” then he’ll go to his boss and hope he’ll counter-offer, though he doubts he can.

 

Todd admits he doesn’t want to take power in the situation because then he’ll have to live with the consequences of his decisions.

 

He’s hoping that what “should” happen, will happen.

 

Crazy?  Sure.

 

But most of us do some version of what Todd is doing.

 

Change is scary.

 

Taking responsibility for our decisions is scary.

 

Leaving it up to the “gods” to decide our fate seems less risky.

Playing mind games is more fun than mapping out a strategy.

 

But, if we don’t create our own life, then who will?

 

Do you want to break through the fear that is preventing you from being influential and heard? 

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

Are You Superstitious?

 

The man who says he can and the man who says he can’t are both correct.

Confucious

 

 

When Chandler Massey won his first daytime Emmy for his role as Will on Days Of Our Lives he was the odds-on favorite in his category, though he didn’t take the predictions seriously.

 

In fact, he didn’t even bother to write an acceptance speech.

 

He revealed to reporters that he hadn’t prepared a speech because he didn’t want to “jinx it.”

 

He later regretted not writing one because he forgot to thank various special people, including his grandparents.

 

I was amused reading this (yes, of course, I was in a doctor’s waiting room!)  because how often have I refrained from doing or saying something because I didn’t want to “jinx” it – whatever “it” is!

 

So many of us engage in this primitive practice of superstition.

 

My father used to say, “Don’t get your hopes up because you don’t want to be disappointed.”

 

I followed his advice for years – and never got disappointed – or super excited.

 

I trained myself to focus on the negative and to downplay my talents, wishes and hopes.  I learned that hoping can only lead to disappointment.

 

I’ve met many people who are reluctant to prepare for the best because that could somehow increase the chances of “the best” not happening.

 

If you think about it, isn’t it amazing just how much power we think we have over the universe? Instead of, “build it and they will come” their mantra is more like, “don’t dream it and it will come about.”

 

Had Massey written an acceptance speech, he still would have won since the mere act of writing would not have had the power to make all those winning votes magically disappear!

 

He engaged in superstitious thinking and we all do it in some form or another:

 

Let’s not talk about bad jury duty experiences because then we’ll receive a summons the next day (hmm. . .I hope I didn’t just jinx myself!).

 

Let’s not talk about it raining on my special occasion because then it will rain.

 

Let’s not prepare since that would entail too much power on our part; but let’s acknowledge we do have power to shape things by simply speaking of them!

What’s wrong with being disappointed?

 

Okay, that’s such an obnoxious question because we all know being disappointed sucks.

 

However, had Massey written his speech and lost, he would have been disappointed AND he would have had that thank you written so he could have sent it to those he loved.

 

After all, he wasn’t thanking them for winning, he was thanking them for loving him and he didn’t need to wait to stand on stage with a trophy to do that!

 

What kind of superstitious thinking are you doing?

 

Is it stopping you from doing something you would enjoy?

 

Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard? 

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

What To Do With Habits that Refuse to Die

 

Taking a new step, uttering a new word, is what people fear most.

Fyodor Dostoevsky

 

Shortly after his 90th birthday, my father was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Six weeks later, he passed away.

 

Knowing that our father was dying, I resolved that I wouldn’t argue with my brother about anything relating to our dad’s care and burial. We had argued over so many details when our mother died that I was determined we would do it “right” this time. I felt confident – after all, I coach people in how to handle difficult, stress-filled situations.

 

I was going to coach Peter and myself through this ordeal. . .

Ah, but I’d forgotten that old habits die hard!

 

Within an hour of my landing back in New Jersey, Peter and I were pressing each other’s buttons with ease. That is, until we looked each other in the eye and said “no – not this time.”

 

More than anything, we wanted to work together so as to be together for our father in his last days.

 

When Peter and I were growing up, our father always told us to “keep your eye on the ball, kid.”

 

Given that Peter and I never played sports, his advice made little sense! Eventually, we figured out he was quoting some famous sports person (still don’t know who) and what he was trying to say was that if you stay focused on what you want, you can have it.

 

Sitting by our father’s side in the nursing home, Peter and I kept our “eye” on the ball, supporting our father and each other in all ways caring.

 

While old habits may never die, this time they did not take hold as in times past. What happened?  Peter & I were able to laugh at our own selves and at each other.

 

“You know you’re being controlling, don’t you?” 

“No, I’m not!” 

“Then, what do you call it?” 

Pause.

“Controlling!”

 

We didn’t allow old rituals to stranglehold us. We quickly (okay, “somewhat” quickly) caught ourselves when we fell into old patterns and moved on to a more honest, more engaging place.

Old habits may die hard or they may never die.

 

The real issue, though, is this – we can change our relationship with old habits of talking and relating.

 

Awareness + desire = change

Well, actually, awareness + desire + skill + practice = change.

 

Here are some questions to help you become more aware of the rituals that trip you up at work and in your personal life:

 

  • What is a recurring situation in which you respond in familiar, knee-jerk fashion?
  • What triggers are being pressed?
  • If the old ways of responding are not working for you, why do you persist in using those ways?
  • What would you like to see happen differently?
  • What would you have to do for that “different” to happen?
  • What’s holding you back from doing that “different”?
  • What can you start doing to make it easier for you to do what you want to do?

 

Remember

Old habits have only as much power and control as we give them!

 

Do you want to learn how to confidently break the old habits that keep tripping you up –

so as to develop and nurture successful professional relationships?

 

To explore how business skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence – and joy

please contact me

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

What Name Do You Call Yourself?

 

To have that sense of one’s intrinsic worth, which constitutes self-respect,

is potentially to have everything.

Joan Didion

 

 

I don’t know my paternal grandfather’s first name. His birth certificate says, “John”, but his baptismal certificate says, “James” while his death certificate says, “Joseph.”

 

He was thirty-three when he died and my father, his son, was just seven. Oddly, my father never could recall his father’s name and nor could my grandmother, even though she’d been married to the man!

 

The “JP” of my name stands for “Joseph Patrick.”

 

I’m named after my father, but my mother hated both names. My dad insisted, though, that I be named after him. However, he never called me “JP.”

 

He called me “Bobby.” Lambs were painted on my crib and because a lamb goes “bah-bah,” he called me “BaBa” when I was growing up. In high school, he slurred it into “Bobby.”

I come from a family that doesn’t have strong loyalty to names!

 

Yet, there is power to a name.

 

Recently, Roxanne, a new client, came to me distraught – she’s been out of work for several years and feels hopeless.

 

She said, “I don’t know any more who I am.  I’ve lost my dream and I don’t know how to get it back.”

 

I asked her to tell me who she had been before she lost her job.

 

Agitated, she said that she couldn’t remember.

 

And then, she poignantly muttered, “I don’t know if I really ever had a sense of ‘me’.”  She went on to say, “I’m a loser.”

 

I’m coaching Ron, another client, in public speaking. He’s intelligent, accomplished, respected and valued as a professional resource by his peers.

 

He downplays that reality by maintaining, “I am a fraud.”

 

When he speaks, he talks fast because he doesn’t think he’s worthy of people’s attention.  He’s afraid that people will see him for the imposter that he believes he is.

 

I think it’s easy for a person to lose sight of who they are – of who they once wanted to be – and of who they could become.

 

The TV private eye Remington Steele famously claimed, “I am who I believe myself to be.”

 

Whether you’re a fictional character or a real person, I think that belief influences just about everything in a person’s life!

 

Roxanne believes she’s a “loser” and Ron thinks he’s a “fraud.”

 

I know, though, that she’s not a loser and he’s not a fraud.

Yet, they insist on labeling themselves with names that don’t accurately reflect the reality of who they are.

 

Motivational guru Brian Tracy urges people to,

“Never say anything about yourself you do not want to come true.”

 

What name do you give yourself?

Who do you believe yourself to be?

Is it a belief that gives you life or that sabotages your life?

 

Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard?

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

 

This One Precious Day!

 

The aim of life is to live, and to live means to be aware,

joyously, drunkenly, serenely, divinely aware.

Henry Miller

 

I recently came across this reflection snippet from Danielle LaPorte.

I don’t know the context from which this comes, but it has grabbed my imagination and challenged me to ask myself,

what am I doing in this moment and will it eventually benefit someone?

I don’t know the context from which this comes, but it has grabbed my imagination and challenged me to ask myself, “what am I doing in this moment and will it eventually benefit someone?”

 

Read this and see if you’re similarly challenged. . .

 

Right Now:

  • Someone you haven’t met yet is already dreaming of adoring you.
  • Someone is writing a book that you will read in the next two years that will change how you look at life.
  • Millions of children are assuming that everything is amazing and will always be that way.
  • Someone is in profound pain, and a few months from now, they’ll be thriving like never before. They just can’t see it from where they’re at.
  • Someone has recently cracked open their joyous, genuine nature because they did the hard work of hauling years of oppression off of their psyche—this luminous juju is floating in the ether, and is accessible to you.
  • Someone is genuinely forgiving the seemingly unforgivable.
  • Someone is curing the incurable.

 

What are YOU doing Right Now?!

 

Do you want to be more in the moment right now

so as to develop and nurture successful professional relationships?

To explore how business skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence – and joy

please contact me

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

 

National Positive Thinking Day

 

Your attitude defines your altitude.

Zig Ziglar

 

This Friday, September 13th, is National Positive Thinking Day!

 

My father was a great storyteller who had an appreciation for the absurd. With Scotch in hand, he was a jolly good-fella whom people enjoyed.

 

Although he had a great sense of humor, my father was not an optimist. While he could laugh so hard that he’d cry, the proverbial glass was ALWAYS half empty.

 

We were a Catholic family and like many Catholics of his generation, he could quote the Catechism. The first question in that book is: “Why did God make us?”

 

The classic answer is, “God made us to know, love and serve Him in this world and be happy with Him in the next.”

 

My father would quote this and point out, “It doesn’t say anything about being happy in this world. We’re not meant for happiness.”

 

This belief, which is a perversion of Catholic thought, allowed him to explain every disappointment, misstep and misfortune that happened in his life.

 

He was a fatalist and as such had low expectations for life.

Dreams didn’t amount to much because they most likely would be decimated.

 

Hopes were pleasant but did little more than aspirin.

 

I had to work hard to understand how his belief system was grounded in a lie – a lie that allowed him to aspire for very few things of value.

 

All these years later, I don’t think my father was unique in his fatalism. In fact, I think it’s far more common than we care to admit in this “feel-good” society of ours.

 

Mildred (85) is the oldest resident in my condo building.

 

She told me that she and her husband raised their family in this building although she had never wanted to live here. She wanted to own a house but her husband wouldn’t hear of it.

 

She lamented, “I’ve been miserable in this place for thirty years. Can you believe that?” And I did detect a twinge of pride in her voice.

 

I laughed, saying, “Of course I can!”

 

It’s easy to surrender power and believe that ultimately life is controlled by forces outside our control.

Viktor Frankl, one of last century’s greatest writers and a survivor of Auschwitz, fervently believed that,

“We who lived in the concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one thing: The last of his freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”

 

Be happy.  Be powerful.  Think positive!

 

Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard?

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Soul Murder

 

I know – it’s a dramatic title to a blog post. . .

 

I first came across this brief short story by famed writer David Mamet in the LA Weekly – decades ago.

 

Back then I clipped it, saved it and occasionally would read it when sorting through files.

 

Few stories have haunted me like this has – exquisitely poignant.

 

And for any of us working towards “confidence” – well, we all need someone to hand us a quarter!

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Soul Murder

by David Mamet

 

The child sat with his head in his hands, rocking back and forth. “And if you did not want it, you should not have asked for it,” the woman said, “for you do not know what it means to deserve something, for you do not know what it is to work for something.” She paused. “Do you?”

 

The boy did not look up. And it seemed the woman did not require him to. She rubbed one eye for a moment, and while she rubbed it, her mouth went slack. The boy continued rocking.

 

“Now,” she said, “when we get home, do you know what I’m going to do? I’m going to take your toys and box them. And I’m going to ship them away. Do you think I’m fooling?”

 

The two other children — probably his brother and sister, the man thought — looked on, not dispassionately, but at a remove. Well certainly, the man said to himself. If they were to intervene, what would they say?

 

The boy stopped rocking and rose from the bench and began to walk, stiff-legged, looking down.

 

“Where are you going?” the woman asked.

 

He raised his head, cow-eyed, to indicate his destination — the men’s room across the waiting room.

 

“Then why do you walk like that?” the woman said. “I’m talking to you. Why do you walk like that, for God’s sake?”

 

His mouth moved like a fish’s for a moment.

“You sit down,” she said, “and I’ll tell you when I want you to go somewhere.”

 

He waited a moment and then sank down on the bench. His mouth was open, and his hands were pressed over his ears. He put his head down, just above his knees, and began rocking again.

 

The woman addressed herself to the other two. She drew them close around the pile of baggage and spoke softly to them.

 

Yes, that’s right, the man thought. Yes, that’s right.

 

She gestured to the baggage and pointed at them, and they nodded; and she gestured at the washroom and she nodded and then she, and then they, looked over at the other boy. She got up quickly and gathered herself together and walked crisply off.

The other children looked guiltily at the boy and then they determinedly busied themselves with their books.

 

Well, now’s the time, the man thought, and he had this fantasy: He would walk over to the boy and sit beside him. “Do you know who I am?” he would say. The boy would look up. “I am your guardian angel. I have been sent to tell you this: You are not bad, but good. Do you understand? You are not bad, but good. I only have a moment, but you are to keep this.”

 

He inventoried his pockets for something to give the boy.

 

“You are to keep this — it’s a magic quarter. Every time you see it, every time you touch it, you will magically remember that you are not bad, but good. You are good. Do you understand?

 

“Now, listen to me — one day you will lose the quarter. This is part of the plan. When this occurs, it means that each time you see any coin then you will remember that you are good.”

 

In the fantasy the man pressed the coin into the boy’s hand and quickly stood and walked away.

 

As he finished the fantasy, he saw the woman walk out of the washroom and return to the two good children and saw the three of them smile and rise and organize themselves around their bags. Just before they left, she looked at the boy on the bench and glared at him as if to say, “Well?” And the boy rose and followed them.

 

— David Mamet

 

Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard?

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

[email protected]

818-415-8115

Breaking Through Old Rituals That No Longer Work

 

What you risk reveals what you value.

Jeanette Winterson

 

My communication work is based in the belief that we all do what we do and say what we say for a reason.

 

No one “just is”. 

 

Flowing from that is my conviction that in every relationship, over time, we fall into dance steps, patterns for dealing with conflict as well as for expressing feelings, needs and desires.

 

The question, though, becomes – are those dance steps working for you or are they sabotaging you and your partner?

 

This past week I got an email from Pamela (names changed), a former client. She wrote:

 

Recently my boyfriend and I have really been working on our communication. For perhaps the very first time I noticed that when I’m upset and need to ask him something, I get very frustrated and then just explode into accusatory statements instead of explaining what I want or what I’m feeling.

 

Usually that sets off our “normal” fight of “YOU never – well, YOU never –” but this time I stopped and told him, “Look, I have a lot of trouble with this so can you please hug me and work with me instead of reacting to me?”

 

And he actually did!

It was an interesting moment for both of us.  He said to me, “Well, I never knew that. I thought you were just cruelly accusing me, doing your usual annoying girlfriend thing.”

 

We talked about ways I can bring up issues without waiting too long and then exploding.  And now he’s being less reactive to my tone and more understanding when I repeat something three times in a row – he gets that it’s because I’m having difficulty expressing my self and am caught in a “broken record mode.”

 

Now when I do that (which I did this morning), he just pretends to be a broken record too and we make it a joke between us.

 

I’m excited for Pamela and her boyfriend because of the good that has come about from their mutual kindness and determination to break a habit that chipped away at the quality of their life together.

 

Pamela’s boyfriend thought her lashing out was just a “girlfriend thing”.

 

It wasn’t.

 

However, it wasn’t until she came clean and actually asked him for what she needed that he was able to really understand what was going on.

This was a breakthrough moment in their relationship.

 

And, hey, never underestimate the power of a good hug!

 

Pamela reminds us that life really can be far simpler than we make it out to be!

 

 Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard?

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

[email protected]

818-415-8115

 

Figuring Out What To Do When You Finally “Grow Up”!

Christmas in July – what can I say?!

 

Where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet. –

there you will find your vocation.

Frederick Buechner

Since January I’ve had four new clients approach me with the refrain, “I need help figuring out what I want to do when I grow-up!”

Each of these folks has graduated college (one is a post graduate) and each works at an established company. And each is deeply uncomfortable where they are in life.

So how do you figure out what to do when you “grow-up”?

The first thing is to acknowledge that you already ARE grown-up!

You are an adult – even if you may not always feel like one or act like one.

In addition, although you have a job or had a job, it’s critical to keep in mind that you are not your job – no matter what you do. 

You are the sum of your relationships and your obligations to those relationships, along with your feelings and beliefs, your spirituality and psychology, your values and habits.

All of that guides and influences what you do and how you do it and why you do it.

The legendary theologian John Henry Newman believed that “To live is to change, and to be perfect is to have changed often.”

When someone says they want to figure out what to do when they “grow up” they are muddling the issue because the issue is not “when I grow-up.”

The issue is – given that I am today this grown-up, how will I reinvent myself?

In the early years of my adult life I lived in a religious community and prepared for ordained ministry as a priest. When I resigned from ministry after twenty years of community life I had only a hazy notion of who I was. And, yes, that it is a startling thing to admit!

My therapist told me that I had to find new ways of being “priest.” That required I do things that would force me to become realistically acquainted with the skills and talents I’d acquired and had taken for granted. I had to experiment, try on, risk and reevaluate.

Reinvention doesn’t necessarily require new skills. It does, though, require you to be familiar with the skills you currently have and become comfortable using them in new and possibly unfamiliar ways.

So how do you reinvent yourself – now that you are grown-up?

 

Cristina Nehring in her book, A Vindication Of Love, writes that when she was in high school:

My English teacher told our class that the most important thing about life was to live it as if it were a good novel – as if, she said, it were a good film script. ‘Would audiences walk out during the movie of your life?’ She believes that by living ‘deliberately, gracefully, inventively, and fearlessly’ any one of us can be “a piece of art.” 

Here are 20 questions for you to rummage around in and grapple with

as you create the piece of art that is YOU

1.     In your present job, what skills do you enjoy putting to use? What comes easy to you?

2.     For what skills do you get your most compliments?

3.     When you last were looking for work, what had you really wanted to do?

4.     What or who pushed you into taking this job?

5.     How you think you’ll emotionally be if you remain in your current job for another five years? Ten years?

6.     What are the practical reasons for you remaining in your current job? How important are those needs? Are those needs really “needed”?

7.     Who else is involved in your decision to reinvent yourself?

8.     What needs do they have? What fears are attached to those needs?

9.     Is there a specific field you’re interested in? Does it require new training? Do you know anyone who is doing what you want to do? Do you know anyone who knows someone doing what you want to do?

10.  Are you most excited by the idea of a new job or by having the opportunity to use skills you currently under-use?

11.  Is there any place within your current company that would let you tap more into the skills you want to be immersed in?

12.  A dream job is just a dream without a strategy. Do you have a dream or a strategy? What does your strategy look like?

13.  How will your life be different in your new job? Is this new job crucial to making your life different in the way you imagine?

14.  What will you miss from your current job and do you think you’ll find it in your new one?

15.  How will the new job make you more “grown-up” than your current one? What “grown-up” responsibilities will you have in your new job that you don’t have in your current?

16.  How are you sabotaging yourself now and would those techniques carry over in whatever new job you take?

17.  Do you have a tolerance for ambiguity, along with a dose of patience and grit?

18.  Do you think you have what it takes to reinvent yourself?

19.  What is one skill you have that will come in handy as you reinvent yourself? One is one skill you need to develop?

20.  What do you want to be remembered for in this life? Will your future job help you be remembered for all the right reasons?

 

Answer these questions and you will have more insight into your next possible job and clarity into who you want to be, doing what you’ll be doing.

If you strategize with these questions, you will not just find a new job. You will experience transformation.

Leadership guru John Maxwell calls transformation the “journey to significance.” Significance, according to Maxwell, is all about adding value to people.

Angela Duckworth, author and expert on “grit” believes that, “Rather than ask, ‘What do I want to be when I grow up?’ ask, ‘In what way do I wish the world were different? What problem can I help solve?’ This puts the focus where it should be — on how you can serve other people.”

 

Deep. Yes, I know!

Going deep, though, is what adults do!

 

Do you want to help discovering who you want to be when you grow up?

 

To explore how life- skills coaching can help you live your life

 with enhanced confidence – and joy

please contact me

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

The So–Called Randomness of a Communication Coach’s Life in Los Angeles

 

A couple of weeks ago, driving south on the 101 freeway, just before I got to the 110, I passed a building I never noticed before. Spray-painted on the side: “You deserve the right kind of love.”

 

I smiled in ready agreement but then wondered, “what is the right kind of love? Is the right kind different for me than for others?”

 

Later that day, I met with Rita and Peter (all names changed) who are getting married this summer at a 5-star resort. Rita’s parents are divorced and her father is footing the entire bill. Only catch – if she invites her mother, he won’t pay for the wedding.

 

Rita wants a wedding that will blow up Instagram but since her father is paying for it all, she didn’t know what to do.

 

She claimed her father had put her in a hopeless situation. So, she’s caved and isn’t inviting her mother who lives in Florida.

 

Actually, though, Rita’s dad hasn’t put her in a hopeless position. Rita has a choice and so as to lessen her guilt, she’s chosen to believe she’s caught in a hopeless predicament.

 

A couple of days later, while waiting for a haircut, I glanced through an Esquire Magazine interview with the actor Tom Hardy (“Dark Knight Rises” and scores of films).  The guy stunned me with this quote:

 

I have always been frightened with men, to the point where I couldn’t go into a gym because of the testosterone, and I felt weak. I don’t feel very manly. I don’t feel rugged and strong and capable in real life, not how I imagine a man ought to be. So, I seek it, to mimic it and maybe understand it, or maybe to draw it into my own reality. People who are scary, they terrify me, but I can imitate them. I can stay terrified, or I can imitate what terrifies me.

 

If you’ve caught one of his movies, you would be puzzled by his admission of fear as he presents as a no-nonsense “tough guy.” In fact, he’s so tough, he’s determined not to be held hostage by the fear-inducing lies he tells himself.

 

Then, while procrastinating writing this post by cleaning my desk, I found this quote I had scribbled on a post-it:

 

95% of the beliefs we have stored in our minds are nothing but lies and we can suffer because we believe all these lies.

Don Miguel Ruiz, author of The Four Agreements

 

Reflecting on the week’s random moments, I’m now wondering if the “right” kind of love we deserve is the love that allows us to not drive ourselves nuts with lies we tell ourselves!

 

In my experience as a communication skills coach and trainer, I’ve discovered that the biggest lie of all is the lie that “I have no choice” – the lie that my happiness and well-being rests in the hands of others.

 

I now tell my coaching clients that maybe the “right kind of love” is a love “right” enough that we can face down the fears that our lies conjure up.

 

A love that lets us wiggle free of the crippling belief that if we don’t match others’ expectations of us then we’ll be harshly judged.

 

Maybe the right kind of love (for self and others) is the love we take responsibility for. And that’s why undertaking communication skills coaching really is an act of love!

 

CONSIDER:

  • Where are you feeling helpless in your life – professional or personal?
  • Are you really helpless – or are you afraid of the consequences that may follow doing what you know you need to do?
  • Why couldn’t you find a way to manage those consequences?
  • Who or what could help you?

Answer these questions and realize that –

 

Deserving the right kind of love means we stop feeling helpless.

That’s the “business” of CONFIDENCE!