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What Does a Life Coach Actually Do? Ask Me Anything about Life Coaching.

www.trajectorycoaching.org
Carina Huggins

Carina Huggins

BA, MSS, ACC, MBTI®

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I was chatting with someone the other day about being a professional coach, and they said to me, “so basically you listen to people’s problems and give advice?”

I stopped and thought about that for a moment. The answer that I gave?

“No, actually I don’t do either of those.” Hardly the reply my acquaintance was expecting.

We were having coffee, so there was time to explain.

I wanted to share this question tonight, because it was an opportunity to both clarify the art and science of coaching and address a common misperception. Two birds with one stone.

There are so many definitions of ‘coaching’ out there. Yes, there are some out there who solve problems, give advice and act in a consultant model (which are certainly excellent models) but what is it like with a professionally certified ICF coach?

Let me tell you, because it is an interesting distinction.

I don’t ‘listen’ to my client’s problems.

In fact, the actual problem doesn’t sweep me up the way it does for a client. Though I listen with my ears, as a coach, it is not serving you if I dive right in with you to the story and resonate with it, body mind and soul. When a client is working with a problem, they are swimming in it. I like the analogy of choppy water on a lake – A client is paddling, working hard, staying afloat, solving the problem, coming up for a gasp, and then another problem arises… from the same exact lake.

It’s not easy swimming in choppy water. A client’s problem can easily take up an entire coaching hour, and it is up to the coach to respect the client’s needs and goals for a session, have them know we truly hear them, but also know when it is time to gently guide them out of the water, and have them wade onto the shore. From the shore, together a coach and client can examine the entire lake from an outside perspective.

Coaching is like finally deciding to clamber out and sit on the shore after battling the waves. I always tell potential clients that they must be able and willing to step into the mode of “a human simply being” and approach things with curiosity and an open mind. To be with themselves and be with the coaching process. Be willing to put some things into practice and be willing to stay accountable. If they stay in “human busily doing” mode with a strong desire for benchmarks, outcomes, a fixation on the goals, they are basically out there still swimming in the lake, just harder and faster. They won’t trust me enough to come sit on the shore beside me. They won’t develop trust in the relationship or go dive deep in session.

But back to the lake…

I am not listening to my client’s problem. I am listening with my ears to a client and their problem, yes but I am listening on several other levels, as well. I am watching the subtle shifts in body language, eye contact, gestures and posture. I am quite literally feeling the energetic shifts in a conversation and the associated moods and emotions. A client doesn’t have to tell me when they move into sadness or happiness in a story, the change in the air and energy of a room is palpable. I may offer this as a gentle observation to deepen awareness and context of the discussion, particularly if we are working not just on a conversation and logic level, but an emotional and intuitive level.

As I listen to a client, I am not listening to their problem. I am listening to the person behind the problem. The helpful beliefs, the harmful beliefs, the statements that shut down future possibility, the statements that open it up. The vast background of emotions, moods, experiences, and beliefs that have made this neutral event in this person’s life a problem for them that is keeping them from where they want to be.

And giving advice? Nope. Definitely not that either.

I don’t give advice in a coaching session.

After 3000 coaching sessions, I know for a fact, that the only true expert, the only content matter expert in that specific client’s life is themselves. Only they know precisely where they truly want to be, and only they truly know why their ‘right now’ is not doing it for them. I don’t have to wake up with them every day. They have to wake up with themselves every day for the rest of their lives. I think about this all of the time, because I really appreciate how profound that statement is.

It is a catalyst for ownership, responsibility and accountability in clients. Try it yourself. Write on a post-it note, “I will wake up with you tomorrow, and every morning for the rest of my life. Love, me.”

Giving advice doesn’t result in someone crossing the bridge from where they are to where they want to be. It simply gives them a brief glimpse of the other side, described by someone else. They don’t see how amazing it is.

What makes someone walk over to the other side of the bridge and truly step into their new life, finally take action and get results? Well, I can tell you it is not advice giving.

I cannot walk that bridge for them and shout out from the other side “It is amazing over here you should join me! Just start walking!” (by the way, a lot of coaches do this.)

However, I can walk alongside a client over that bridge. As we step over the cobble stones together we co-create what the other side looks like. We partner in helping the client gain perspective, awareness, clarity and choice. And when they get halfway over the bridge and slow down or perhaps move backward, we can deepen practices, accountability and move deeper to remove final blocks that have held them back all these years. When you are moving forward, you develop ways to move forward, but you also develop ways to fight the urge to move backward, to where you came from. To safety. Security. Familiarity.

This is another important piece of coaching; the call of safety, security, familiarity is strong. It is literally wired into the brain. As a client moves into new possibilities for their life and new opportunities, the brain will use its best tools to convince a client to return to where they were. Coaching is a dynamic process and this bump in the road shows up in different ways depending on the client. Recommitment to the original problem and way of thinking, with even more passion, rescheduling a session or a lot of “I don’t know”s in a session. These to me are not obstacles but opportunities. It’s an exciting indicator they are moving well along the bridge and the best work is about to happen.

I don’t give advice.

In fact, you are giving me advice on your life, where you want to be and how it is going to happen, and why you need help. I’m asking you LOTS of questions precisely so that you are in that place of giving me advice on you. I’m simply a highly invested partner on this journey of YOU believes you’ll get there and sees how that is possible (even if you don’t yet.)

The moment you step out of yourself and take that outside observer approach you’ll find yourself stopping mid-sentence and realizing what you’ve just said – then, you’ll realize the incongruency of what you just said with what your future life is supposed to be.

And then you’ll look away, perhaps sip at your coffee and I’ll thoroughly enjoy that moment, because it is a magical one. When it comes to a client having a true moment of insight, or an “ah hah moment” I know at that moment, whatever has been seen in your inner perspective cannot be unseen.

I am here as a confidential, supportive, professional partner in your journey. I’m here to have the conversations that you don’t get to have with anyone else, that dive deep inside to who you are as a human being. Unlike therapeutic or clinical approaches (healing, recovery, issue resolution) my time is spent focusing on your elevation, enhancement and growth.

Coaching is an evolutionary, forward facing process. We have all of the information in the world to get us to where we want to go, but we don’t, do we? And that is what coaching focuses on. It gets us there, and then acts as a catalyst for flashes of insight which will ensure you’ll never see anything the same way again and you won’t go back to old patterning or beliefs.

On a personal note, I think that at this time in our lives, we are all in deep need of deeper conversation, deeper connection and more engagement with who we really are. In the 2018 world of humans doing, we all desperately want to be recognized and engaged with as humans being. We are deep. We are growing, and evolving and going through massive shifts. We want someone to bear witness, to support, and be a partner in this process. We should have someone who can be that. It is tragic to experience this rich evolution in this lifetime and not share it with anyone, collaborate with anyone or use our experiences in turn to serve others.

Maternity leave for me has been the CRAZIEST personal growth, evolution, awakening.  Truly on body, mind, intellect, soul, spirit, love – on all of those levels I was cracked wide open, rebuilt and vastly different (in a good way.) Early parenthood is an accelerated growth incubator and it is a gift in that ALL of the above is revealed to you.  It is a wild ride, and I engaged with a coach during it, because I wanted to make sure I was clear on my dreams, the life I wanted for my fam, and wanted to let a few self limiting beliefs go.  I also worked with a psychologist to heal some old wounds, and endeavoured to undertake a variety of “great maternity leave projects” to keep my focus forward facing and fun!

Amidst the surface level day-to-day life of humans doing, we are all hopping online to have deep conversations, listen to podcasts, read books and learn. Have you noticed the explosion in podcasts, following shortly on the explosion of blogs? We are all humans being – yet we do it silently, and alone.

In my gratitude practices (5 minute journal format) I often note down the internet – I’m incredibly thankful for the opportunity to write and share and express my own deep internal worlds.  Motherhood can be lonely, I have a 3 hour window where all of my three kids are happy and awake (9-12) and then they turn into pumpkins and it’s go home for nap time.  Did I mention I work full time? So there’s very little time (and sacred space) to dive deep into these conversations.  I don’t think it’s our fault that we mothers are left scraping the surface of connection with surface level conversations.  We don’t have the time and space to go there, yet.  But, when in just a few years, that place will open up again we will have SO MUCH TO TALK ABOUT.

But in the meantime, I think it’s really, really important to talk now, endeavor to grow, enjoy the journey and have a partner in the process.

For a long time, I didn’t want to because of my own limiting beliefs and reference points, which I worked through and overcame with a coach. I can feel my old mind saying “Carina, this is a really long post and it’s way too personal” but my new mind says, you have a choice in whether to believe that or not, and you no longer do. You know the way to move forward is to share your deepest thoughts and insights and help people understand the profession.

I am here writing precisely because I decided to collaborate with a coach to dive into my deeper internal worlds and clarify where I wanted to go. I am eternally thankful for the rapid evolution and elevation it set me on.

I hope you enjoyed this deeper dive into the coaching profession. I write these from a totally authentic viewpoint of someone who was unsure what it was, went through being coached, and then became an Associate Certified Coach with the International Coach Federation.

I enjoy writing these because I enjoy sharing human stories and help people understand we are all connected and growing together.

To become a coach isn’t to figure it all out instantly, in fact, most coaches are on their own *fun* ( because it’s what they love to do) evolutionary paths. Every day they work through the same thing their clients do. Gaining some tools and insights, reframing, shifting their perceptions, priming their state, practicing awareness and choice. Even the greats like Tony Robbins or Oprah Winfrey do this. Every day.

If you are interested in gaining the tools, shifting your axis and a partner to work with the big shifts and evolution in your life, you are most welcome to shoot me a message.

And do leave a comment if this lands with you – or even better if you have an additional insight to offer that this sparked for you! Reading articles and engaging with others in the comments, let me tell you, has been (and still is) a fundamental part of my own growth path. My mission is to now serve others in their own growth.

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Ankylosing Spondylitis Journey, Essays, Free Life Coaching Guides, grief, Grounding, Happiness, health coaching, Lifestyle, Lifestyle Design, Mental health, Physical Wellness

Stop Repressing your Emotions. Start Feeling and Start Healing. My Ankylosing Spondylitis Remission Journey.

Recently Diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis_ (4)

 

Image: Stock Image, Colourbox.

This image right below, is of the Hoover Dam. An engineering marvel bordering Arizona and Nevada.  It is a powerful visual for today’s post.  Hold it in your mind, it will make sense in a few minutes.

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Its concrete base is more than 600 ft thick.  Why?  The Hoover Dam holds back 45,000 lb of water pressure per square foot. Behind this massive concrete wall lies 247 square miles of water. That water is carefully controlled and flows through the dam.  A tiny, restricted flow of water generates enough energy in the plant’s turbines, to power the lives of 1.3 million people for a year.

Side note:  If you have attempted to keep bath water in the bath with a toddler, you will have an appreciation for the scale of this dam and water pressure, because with a toddler bath, you (the parent) with 5 or 6 feet of body, are trying to withstand approximately 100 gallons of water.  lol.  Anyways…

The water’s potential energy held behind that wall, is staggering.  It is there, bound up, waiting to be let through that dam.  The water that gets through, explodes with energy, transferring to kinetic energy, and eventually into electric energy for hundreds of thousands of homes.

If you remember back to your high school classes in physics, (assuming you actually attended those classes – I can’t say I did)  you may remember the first law of thermodynamics, the Law of Conservation of Energy: Energy can neither be created nor destroyed; energy can only be transferred or changed from one form to another.

I think about this all the time with parenthood – we all witness a huge range of energies & emotional states that  children move through.  They are incredibly dynamic.  Toddler kinetic energy (racing down the hall) can flash over to emotional energy in a heart beat! They will pick up any energy in the room like a sponge.  Even your baby does.  Trying to put your baby down quickly and easily when you are agitated and restless?  Yeah, good luck with that…

So, back to my point with energy only transfers. The human body experiences many forms of energy. Kinetic energy, chemical energy, thermal energy and electrical energy are all examples.   Energy is flowing within us and through us.   It leaves us, and comes to us.  It is a constant interplay between us and our environments.We’re in one giant circle of energy exchange.

Though we haven’t gotten a good handle on it yet, there are other forms of energy flowing in our body, too.  This energy is described in Eastern Medicine as Qi, but in the west we don’t really have a proper name for it yet other than the very loosey goosey description of someone’s “vibe.”

We have good days and bad days, on days and off days.  We feel the vibes of other people and we can’t help but raise to their level, or sink to their level, depending on where they are.  When our babies or children are in a different energy state from us, we are left trying to stay grounded while helping them move through their various states of being.

If you are super fascinated by energy states of children, I truly recommend Carol Tuttle’s book which describes different energy dispositions and how to work with them in children.   It has been hugely influential in my life and parenting.

Here we, are trying our best to manage our children’s energy and how we react to it, thinking we are the knowledgeable ones… BUT… children have something very, very important to teach us.  Children live in the present moment, and healthily process emotions.  They let themselves experience everything in full technicolour.  Then, as quickly as an emotion arrives, it passes.  Maybe 5 minutes later, maybe 2 weeks later.  It moves on.

Granted, we don’t want to go into full toddler style technicolour ranges of emotion and energy.  We are adults and self-regulation is important in environments like oh, say, our jobs? Extended family dinners?

BUT you know what we adults do? We repress our emotions and deny them. We are like the wall of the hoover dam, except we are not 600+ feet thick concrete.  We’re made of tissue, and bone, and organic materials that are constantly shifting and changing. I fully believe whatever emotions are being held back, the pressure of those is felt in our bodily structures.

We swallow emotions down and instead of letting them go through us and out of us. We push them deep into our subconscious and consequently, into our bodies.  They eventually show up, becuase energy changes state.  Perhaps bad dreams, or unconscious behaviours, or even chronic pain and illness.

In my own healing journey toward vitality and away from chronic pain and depressive symptoms and nightmares, I’ve come to understand that many of my own emotions have been repressed over the years, for various reasons.   From family, social and cultural pressure to have a stiff upper lip, to simply needing to get sh*t done in crisis situations and saving the emotions for later.

And here, is the main point of this article.  It turns out that having small children can be one of the most liberating things for your body, mind, spirit and soul, because they get our emotions back into free-flow mode.

Full disclosure, pre-kids, I used to see being emotional and crying as a trait of weakness and extremely undesirable. If I went to a movie with a friend or family, I’d inwardly roll my eyes if they were sobbing, and judge them – yet I’d be picking at my lip or fighting my own battle not to cry, staring at the back of people’s heads and trying to disconnect from the movie.

I took pride in being logical, un-emotional, stoic, etc.  I was simply modelling what I saw around me.  And you know what, for a long time it did truly serve me.  Locking down and getting stuff done and facing challenges was something I had to do for almost all of my teens and twenties.  It’s what I had to do then, and I honour it. That’s why we keep beliefs around, right?  At some point they were useful.

In 2013 I took care of my mum with stage IV lung cancer and I was pregnant at the same time. It was an honour to be in that role. I was locked down, efficient, stoic as F**** while so many people around me fell apart from grief.  I am careful not to judge it as a good thing or a bad thing – I have no regrets about how I handled my cancer caregiver role, however, keeping things on lock down did catch up with me, because those beliefs became more deeply embedded and my emotional range deeply decreased.  

When old beliefs begin impacting your current quality of life, it is time to say:

“you know what?  You served me once upon a time but you are not serving me anymore.  In fact, you are keeping me from moving forward and getting where I want to go in my life. It is time for you to go!” 

After the ultimate application of my ability to remain stoic and unemotional, I was thrown into motherhood, where my old beliefs about repressing emotion began to really backfire.  When my daughter was 3 months old, I was struggling to feel anything.  Joy, happiness, connection.  I realized that I had to get things flowing again, and feel something.  I began counseling, reading, keeping a dream journal and some deep somatic work. 

In order to let the good stuff flow, I learnt that I had to let the sad stuff flow, too.  The earliest hints of this were in my dreams which were really quite tortured and tragic.  Emotion was showing up in my dreams and my chronic pain was intense. 

From 2013 to 2018 I embarked on a journey to create non-self-judgemental space in my life let my emotions flow.  It was terrifying.  It was really hard, too. 

I believe that for any “logical” person, letting yourself finally connect with your emotional states and acknowledge that you are an emotional being, is the ultimate act of courage. Nobody wants to feel the hard stuff.  It’s why people get addicted to things.  We want to avoid it.  But in order to get to the other side (happiness and the good feels) you have to be brave enough to go through the hard feels.  

One of the practices I took on, was to cry in public. This was one of the most intense forms of self-regulation and repression that I used to do as a child and it was one of my most stubbornly held beliefs.  I knew this was a stubborn belief, because the thought of crying in public or around friends instantly made me recoil. 

 It was a hugely difficult practice at first to let myself cry publicly, but after some months of work, I did it! One of the first times I was able to truly let myself be and allow emotions to flow, was on an overnight flight to London Heathrow with my daughter who was 6 months old at that point.  The moment that plane flew over the twinkling Calgary skyline, I lost it. My mum and I had so many special memories of flying on that exact Air Canada flight back over to the UK to see our family (and when she lived there, me flying out to see her.) I was tired, and snuggling a baby and just feeling very, very lonely at that point of my life. I let myself sob.  It let it out, and let it go.  When people asked if I was okay, I said “not really.” I opened up.  That first time crying in front of a plane of concerned strangers was huge, and slowly I was able to do it in scarier situations – in front of my husband and friends.  

I would have NEVER done that pre-baby. Not. In. A. Million. Years.  Honestly, not even for $1000. Even 5 years later after tons of work, I find it hard to be emotional. I don’t think you can just simply decide to let deeply held beliefs go.  It’s a journey and you will move forward and sometimes backward. 

Rewinding back to 2013.  Once I had let myself experience tears,  there was plenty of room for the good stuff. Over the next five years, I was able to truly access joy again.  The water pressure against the dam released as I let some water (emotions) through the turbines.

By letting water flow through the dam’s power plant and turbines, energy is created. I found that analogy so true to my own life.  By letting emotions finally flow through, the trickle of water became a huge flow.  That emotional energy hit the turbines and converted to a different form.  The energy of growth, happiness and engagement. It released more energy to continue working toward the life I wanted, and more energy to access the good emotions.   

I can also say that it (has) helped relieve some of my chronic pain, though this has been something that has really come along in the last year (2017-2018)

  I truly think that when you have emotional pressure pushing against that wall (by the way that concrete wall is your own fear of emotions and “lockdown” mode)  some of that pressure has to transfer to parts of your body.  Headaches, back pain, maybe inflammation and illness or a bad digestive system?  Depends on you.

Energy is neither created nor destroyed, simply transferred elsewhere in different forms, right?  

In 2018 as I write this with far more emotional range, a gentler, kinder and more accepting attitude toward emotion, I can say that my pain is less, in all senses of the word.  I am more willing and able to express myself, embrace vulnerability and with those things has come a beautiful life, greater happiness and the confidence and faith to embrace highest visions for the life of myself and my family.   I am a better friend, wife, mother for being gentle not only with others in their emotional times, but also myself, and I wouldn’t take that back for the world.

I hope the dam visual lands with you, and that perhaps this causes some reflection on your own emotions, energy management, and the gift that your children have given you.

 

xo

 

Carina

 

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The Power of the Spoken Word and Speech Acts – What Do You Speak into Existence?

 

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My oldest two children are 4 and 3 now, and this summer has been a blast in terms of communication. My three-year old’s language exploded in May (after about 2 months of shitty sleep patterns! ah hah! Mystery solved!) and he is now a chatty little guy, stringing sentences together.

They are listening and soaking up everything around them like a sponge.  They are practicing all of these new words, in new combinations, with new inflections in their voices. Words are being placed together into sentences, like their lego blocks into towers.

Do you remember taking language classes as a kid, and once you had the hang of a sentence you’d learn a slang word or a new word to put in to add some ‘style?’  But when you added that slang word, you kind of felt odd and waited to see how it landed with other people?

I think it’s the same for toddlers, they add in newly acquired words, look around and wait to see if it has landed with someone. Then, their little brains either file away for use again, or they discard it if it comes with shock and horror on part of the parents (like the first time my little man dropped an F-bomb.)

It got me reflecting on our own speech.

When we experience a thought in our mind that we want to put out there, it’s an interesting process.

We have a thought.  In six hundred miliseconds, we push air through our vocal chord, and shape with our mouths, in the process giving life and existence to that thought.   Researchers were only able to track this process for the first time in 2009.

(Don’t even get me started on what a ‘thought’ is, lol that keeps me up at night.)

It is very true that we “speak” things into existence.  Noone knows what we are thinking about, until we decide that it is worth bring from the brain, through the vocal chords and into our mouth where our anatomy forms consonants and vowels.

There are specific things we can do with speech:

We can ask for something (request) “hey could you do me a favour?”

We can offer something “I’d like to have you over next week.”

We can promise something ” I will run that race with you.”

We can declare something “today I am going to show up and crush it!”

We can judge something “She is too stressed.”

We can describe something “She has a frown on her face.”

 

I love to listen to people conversing – at coffee shops, book stores, or even on transit.  It’s fun to start noticing which of the above speech acts they use.

You’d be so surprised how unconscious people are of their speech patterns, yet, it reveals so much about them.

The same goes for your own children, what kind of speech acts above do they use?

Asks: Can you get me the purple cup please?”

Just kidding, my toddlers use declarations instead of requests:  “I WANT THE PURPLE CUP.” 

Descriptions:  “Mommy your legs are spiky!” (usually in a public place with many witnesses ;0) )

 

Just as we have streams of consciousness (thinking,) we have streams of speech.  It is cool to watch the stream of speech coming out of someone.

Do they make declarations? “This is a beautiful day and I am going to enjoy it!

Do they live in judgement? “She should have done this, and she should have done that and look at that dress and no, I didn’t like that lunch, it was too spicy, and it was busy there, and ugh, it’s just so hot out today.  Do you think this is too much (waving at their clothing) ”    – by the way, this sentence is longer for a reason.  Judging is a real bad habit for us humans.

You can also start to discern whether someone speaks from a place of expansion, openness and positivity?  Or – unpleasantly –  closed, negative, and fixed.

 

So here is my question for you:

When someone has just given you air time by asking you about your summer, or day,

When someone has said, “I want to listen to you.”

What do you return with? What is your habit of speech?   What is worth putting out there into the world out of all those conversations floating up there in your mind?

It is estimated we think about 40,000 thoughts a day.  Which ones are worth taking out, pushing through the vocal chords, and forming in the mouth, to share with another human being?

Because what you speak, you speak into existence. 

Your future isn’t here yet, but it arrives when you speak about it and make it real.  

So with that airtime – Are you going to speak of other people and gossip? Is other people what you are going to focus your air-time on? Are you going to speak about everything you enjoy and are looking forward to this summer? Are you going to speak into existence “oh nothing is new?”

Words are sacred.  

Can we gain awareness – a pause – a sacred moment –  before our thoughts make their way to our vocal chords?

Perhaps by practicing that pause, we can light up the areas of the brain + the speech pathways – that prefer growth, expansion, optimism and hope.

Perhaps those newly expanded areas will reflect in our speech patterns.

What do we want to speak into existence as we make offers, promises, requests or declarations?

 

So the next time someone asks “how has your summer been?”  “Anything coming up?” – take that pause.

Where do you want your life to go?  Declare it. 

 

 

 

 

 

Essays, Free Life Coaching Guides, Happiness, Personal Development

How to Have a Great Maternity Leave – Listen to Podcasts (Like Tim Ferriss and Tony Robbins)

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As usual, listening to the Tim Ferris podcast this morning blew my mind wide open.  Sure, it could have been the bulletproof coffee too, but the combination of the two are magical on a morning commute.  Especially when he has Tony Robbins on.

Like me, Tony Robbins is a life coach, albeit a very experienced and world famous one. 🙂

If you haven’t heard his work, maybe check out his TED talk, “Why We Do What We Do” with more than seventeen million views (!)

Early in the podcast, Tony asks Tim an important question.

Usually I just sit and listen to the podcast, but the moment he asked this question,

I was off in another world, contemplating my 34 years of life up to that point.

I love it when Tim Ferris is stumped on his own podcast =)  There was some serious contemplative silence on the podcast.

(insert suspenseful silence here.)

When I work with a client and they don’t answer, are stumped or say “I don’t know” it is so exciting. In coaching this is gold.  

One of the main goals of a professional coach is to help the client dig deeper, discover and become aware of things they were previously unaware of.  It’s like walking into a dark cave, but this time, you have a flashlight, and as you shine it into the dark, you see pictographs on the wall, stalactites and stalagmites, perhaps the sparkle of some crystal formations.

All of a sudden the story of the cave, and everything about the cave has changed.  Your perception of the cave and your expectations of it have totally changed.  And now, your experience and actions inside the cave are going to change.  Instead of afraid at the entrance, you are immersed in exploration and wonder at the natural world.  Because of a flashlight.

Life is a bit like this, too.  These are “ah hah” moments which are precipitated by powerful questions.  Which is why Tony is so good at what he does.

Magura cave, Bulgaria
Rock formation inside the cave Magura near, Belogradchik, Bulgaria – Image from Colourbox

 

A coach like Tony Robbins shows you how to pick up the flashlight and switch it on, and as you explore the cave, and undergo discovery, adventure, and reassessment of everything you thought you knew, the coach is there, at your back.

 

So back to the podcast…

What was the question that stumped Tim Ferriss?

Tony asked “whose love did you crave growing up

 I thought about this in my own life.  As should you.

My Mum was love itself.  I don’t remember craving it from her, but like Tim, I do remember craving love from my dad.

 

Next, Tony asked this gem.

 “Who did you have to be for your parent, to have his respect/love.” 

“gut reaction, no filter…”

 

This takes a while to answer because it is deep in our subconscious.  We’ve never consciously thought about it.  Ah hah.  Here’s a dark cave.  And Tony’s question is the flashlight that has just been handed to you to shine into that dark abyss.

I don’t mind sharing my personal  life here, if it helps you examine your own questions.  And I admire Tim for going there with Tony live, on a podcast.

In my interpretation, I had to be brilliant, intellectually of high calibre, and also athletic, to  have my dad’s respect / love.  

I think back to childhood, I remember the pride and recognition I received from my dad on my first black diamond ski run, his frustration at my slower learning curve, disappointment when I was cut from teams in my teens or when I cried on said ski runs.  The hard pushes beyond my comfort zones in athletic activities,  and his focus on learning, pushing higher, doing better in mathematics, homework and study time, bring home good grades, the hours spent at the dining room table trying to grasp math and counting coins.  Lots of pushing.  hard.  To be extraordinarily talented was to be loved.

He wasn’t around much from the age of 11 onward, but I do remember all of those phone conversations, the first thing I’d bring up was sports and academics, in a bid for his love and attention, which with an absent father, was so craved.

What about you?  Think about what you needed to be for the parent whose love you craved?

Then Tony asked, what about your other parent?   What did you have to be?

Tim, like myself, felt like he didn’t need to be anything with his Mum.  He could just be himself and she embraced and encouraged it.  Same boat with me. The love was there, unconditional, no strings attached, but most importantly, my mum rolled with who I was and encouraged it.

 

Why do these questions matter so much now that we are parents? 

Because we are in the journey of learning about and thinking about the love we express to our children, and how to nurture and encourage them. These questions make us realize that we carry things with us forward into the present day, that were established long ago in the past.  We have the power to become of aware of them, and change them if they do not serve us.

Until 2010 I unconsciously struggled with the impact that my father left on me.  Hard driving, hard pushing to achieve, and show him I am smart. I can do this. A masters degree, no doubt completed in part as one final attempt to get some love and acceptance which I so craved from him (we have an estranged relationship.)   Now I can just accept that pushing myself so hard in grad studies and the difficult journey in 2007-2010 was in part, due to this dynamic in early childhood. I was able to let this go after 2010 through a heck of a lot of self reflection and exploration, but Tony beautifully encapsulated and explained it today and finally gave me a better framework with which to understand the process.  He also made me much more mindful of what I want to do with my own children, and the importance of unconditional love and celebration, and encouragement of who they are instead of who I would love for them to be.

I’m going to guess there’s at least a few people, like me, who are winging this parenting thing and learning as they go, and what a beautiful lesson this morning that I stumbled on by chance as I drove to work.

We go through this world carrying a master assessment.  Our interpretation of our life.  Our story.  It’s like a filter through which everything, every event and situation, flows.  Even our parenting decisions.

To be a great parent, is to know ourselves, and be aware of that which was previously automatic, unconscious.  So that we can make the decision to either continue, or upgrade.

Aside from googling random shit on parenting, poops, and feeding, we can ask ourselves:

Where do our master stories begin? Where do we start to craft our view of the world? What influenced it?

The earliest place is in the home and in our earliest interpretations of love and recognition from our parents.

You are born a blank slate (though my spiritual beliefs include the journey of the soul through various lives) – I like Tony’s words:  “You are born wide open.”

A beautiful, wide open human, open to experiences and learning.  There is no filter yet. Babies and children are simple, pure human beings, operating with pure emotion and authenticity, from day one. Their world is their family and the love surrounding them.

I see this every day in my professional work coaching students.  They walk into my office with a proverbial suitcase rolling behind them.  Before I even work with them on study skills, as a coach I work to unpack and understand the master story they walk in with.

 

Just like the body learning motor patterning (like learning to catch a ball,) we begin emotional patterning. We see and interpret things, craft a master story and then walk with it the rest of our lives. Sometimes it serves us well, sometimes it no longer serves us and we desire change.

I love this idea.  It is beautiful.  

It’s not even an idea, I’d say it is a truth.  

As we think about how we express our love to our children (when, where and how)

we can begin to think about the imprinting that is going on.  What are we passing on? How are we modelling love to them.

It’s such a tricky balance between passing on great morals, values and shaping them into good people, but also embracing and encouraging who they are.  Allowing them to be them selves and the best version of themselves.   That’s why parenting is so diverse!

Ask yourself the questions above.

I’ve said from day one that maternity leave, and parenthood cracks you wide open and you are in a state of deep learning.  There is no more powerful time in your life to explore, understand and reconfigure.

Which brings me to close this long form blog post.

With your child, are you working to model them, or are you working to embrace and let them go with who they are?  It’s a fine balance between passing on great values, morals and shaping them into good people, but also embracing who they are and providing a font of unconditional love.

Essays, Free Life Coaching Guides, Happiness

Freeing Yourself From Other Moms’ Judgements

 

What you’ll learn in this article: Learn the three reasons people are so judgemental.  Why moms can be so intense.  A powerful perspective to help release the power of others’ opinions, and a technique you can use every time someone (unhelpfully) lets you know what they think without you giving them permission.  Oh, and a short blurb on how to politely decline “feedback” from someone.

Let’s Get Started!

Today on the Great Maternity Leave I wanted to offer some life coaching that I do with clients.  But more importantly, this was an important area for development for myself as I went through my own coach training & personal transformation during my first maternity leave.

This post today is about helping you break free from giving other people power over you.  It is about breaking free from the powerful pressures of conformity.  It is not letting your voice or your unique style be shut down.  It is about no longer being afraid to strike out on your own path and to respectfully decline to take in another person’s judgement.

 

THIS IS WHAT DAY TO DAY LIFE IS LIKE

 

You are walking along a path.  Along the path, hundreds of people are standing, giving you their opinions of where you should step on the path, how you should do it, how far you should travel, what you should be afraid of, what might happen, what might go wrong, their own advice, what you should wear, trying to give you goods to carry, saddling you with extra baggage.  etc. etc.

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There are two options.  You could smile politely at them and ignore them, continue walking, enjoying your path, light and unburdened.  Or you could keep stopping, and letting those people load your arms up with more stuff, load your mind up with their fears, their doubts, and take on their opinions.

In the process, you lose track of what path you were on, become confused, and start doubting your journey.  Eventually you can’t even remember the destination.  You are going around in circles, surrounded by people trying to have their voice heard.  I’d imagine it’s like being a celebrity in a media scrum on the red carpet.  Hey! You!  Listen to me! NO! ME!  Turn this way!

 

When it comes to us in this motherhood journey, THIS happens.

SO MUCH.

 

When we open ourselves up to others, we inevitably open ourselves up to (their) opinions and judgements.

I also believe that opinions are so intense on the motherhood journey because (most) of them come from a place of love, and moms are very passionate about children and babies.   Vereeeee passionate.

But really, this post deals with any type of judgement.

 

THE 3 REASONS PEOPLE ARE JUDGY:

1.)  Because some people think that “communication” and “conversation” means giving and receiving advice rather than just listening and only offering advice if it is asked for.

2.) Many people spend their entire day in a state of judgement, assessing what others are doing, talking about others. It becomes a habitual way of thinking, perhaps started in early age.  It becomes a sport for these people.

3.)  If a person does not have growth, aspirations, and excitement in their own lives, they focus on what is going on in others’ lives.

Think about playing in the park with your child.  If you are busy running around the equipment, engaged with them, you have no time or interest for judging.  Your focus is in the present moment.

But the person sitting on the bench watching what you are doing is not engaged and busy.  Their focus is turned outward to what other people are doing.

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**But we have ALL been there, sitting on the bench, quietly watching another parent playing with their child and silently coming up with judgements.  We are not perfect.  It is an active effort and commitment not to live in that place.

 

MY GOAL WITH THIS POST TODAY:

With a baby, we are asking for advice and discussing parenthood quite frequently, so the doors are wide open. And I am sure you will agree that the judgements come rolling in, whether you gave permission or not.  

 

I want to help you become confident and strong in the face of those judgements that come in via words, the grapevine, a comment on your facebook or a “look ” you get at the park.  I’ll discuss some perspectives that help + some strategies.

 

The Chef in the Kitchen Example.

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You are your own best expert.  You have spent 24/7 around your child.  You know every nuance of their behaviour and know their soul. You created and housed their body.  You instinctively and intellectually know their needs. When somebody gives you unwelcome advice or judgements, think of it this way:

It is like they are at a restaurant, then walk into the kitchen and tell the chef how to make his or her own meals.  That sounds crazy doesn’t it?

So does adopting another person’s views of how you should be a mother / wife / woman.

 

We Have Been Trained to Dispense & Accept Judgements Since a Young Age

In school, we (ideally) develop critical thought and hone in on our ability to choose from multiple sources of information, assess each one for evidence & applicability, and then select the information that sits with us best.

Choose. Assess. Select.

We are doing this fairly competently by our 20s.  Especially if we are in post-secondary education.

So why aren’t we able to do this with people’s unhelpful judgements?  Why do we keep taking it personally?   

They hold a lot of power over us, because from an early age we were trained to care what people thought of us.  We were told what to be, how to act, who to be, how to talk, how to think, even sometimes what degree we should pursue. We were trained to depend on other peoples’ judgements of us.  If you did what people wanted you to do, you were good.

If you did not do what people wanted you to do, you were bad.

It takes a long time to unravel that thinking pattern and it is a constant process.  

You will always have to work at it.  But here are some tools that will help.  

 

 

THE BOOK-UNDER-THE-ARM TECHNIQUE:

Imagine that everybody is walking with a thick book under their arm at ALL times.  Seriously, for the rest of the day, I want you to imagine that book is right there, under each person’s arms.

And when they begin to talk to you, they pull that book out from under their arm and turn to a chapter and begin referencing it.  Let your minds’ eye see them doing that.

Wtf, Carina. 

Let me explain now:

Imagine your child is totally melting down and they just offered their (rather unhelpful) opinion on the situation and your parenting.

When that person begins to offer their “opinion” or “judgement” what they are doing, is opening their own life book and referencing their own chapter on that topic.

How did they write their own chapter on a child having a tantrum & what to do:

-The unique family & family culture that they grew up within.

-The unique decade, year, sociopolitical situation, geographical location, country they grew up within.

-The unique culture that they come from.

-How they saw others in their generation dealing with tantrums.

-How they remember being dealt with during a tantrum.

-Their educational background (degree, school system.)

-The unique view of gender roles that they have (by family, culture, etc.)

-The parenting methods that were popular at their time + the few books out of the 100s out there that they happened to read.

 

Wow.  You are different from them on every single one of these points, right?  

Here’s an image to nail this point home.

 

 

IMG_1679

This lady comes from a totally unique, different reference point and perspective from you.

So why would you want to follow HER chapter in HER book? Why would you let her have so much power over you?  Even if she is a friend or a family member?

 

You’ve already got your own book to reference and it applies to your life much better than someone else’s book.

 

Remember, it is up to you to give permission to someone to make their judgement. They cannot offer it if you do not give them permission.

“Thanks ,but I’ve got a system that is working great for me right now, let’s chat about something else.” 

And if it comes out of them before you can stop it, just let it wash over you with the above techniques and perspectives.

 

xo

 

Carina

 

 

 

Communication Skills, Free Life Coaching Guides, Happiness, The Projects

Great Maternity Leave Coaching: How to ASK and GET what you NEED from your Partner.

Why read this?  I teach you how to ask for what you need with power and confidence. I teach you how to avoid the slippery slope of resentment during your maternity leave.

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I went into labour with my firstborn at 11pm.  After a long hard labour, she was born at 6pm the next evening.  That night, I was with her in my hospital room, EXHAUSTED and overwhelmed (my husband couldn’t stay overnight.)  I was so hooped on fatigue and so busy with visitors the next day, I stayed a second night and again, not an ounce of sleep.  Until a kindly nurse offered to take her to the nursery at 3am so I could get four hours.

72 hours without sleep fucks anybody up. AND labour AND giving birth?  

The birthing experience is intense.  Women’s recovery should be treated with the same level of sacred respect as the baby itself.  By everyone, most importantly the mother herself 🙂  And yes, visitors and partners too.  It’s not other people’s fault though, people come from a place of genuine love, support and happiness, and lack of knowing how you are feeling, because every mama is different.

I came home wrecked with exhaustion, overcome with emotion and spent the first 3 months in a haze.  If there is one thing I know, my mental health starts and ends with sleep.  It’s a biggie.  I was so worried about this when I was pregnant.

What I did not have at the time was the power and confidence to ask for what I needed.  Things like: No visitors, at least 2 days of rest, and support during the nights.  Luckily, my husband volunteered after our first night at home with our little nocturnal bat, and definitely the second night at home after seeing me walk straight into the door of a local shoppers drug mart (after discharge from hospital we drove around to get set up with a breast pump rental…first time parent mistake!)

Many, many mums I either coach or chat with deal with a nasty little presence in their lives which I think is born in sleep deprivation.  Resentment.  It is a sneaky, lurking, gnawing creature that is a mix of anger, and disappointment, and a sense of – if I am being totally honest –  injustice.

I think this is one of the greatest enemies of women and one of the most important things we have to work on during maternity leave. There are mannnny situations we will be in during maternity leave that may produce resentment.  Particularly towards our partner.  And the thing is, it’s  not our partners’ fault.

Resentment is purely self-created.  It is the disappointment we are feeling over not getting something we expected, combined with the jealousy that the other person has what we so badly want / need / expect.  

Today I want to offer you some coaching.  One of the most useful (but difficult) skills to master on maternity leave is how to make requests with power and confidence.  You need to step into your strength and self-respect and clearly outline what you need.

We haven’t been taught how to make powerful requests, so when I was trained in speech acts during my professional coaching, my mind was blown.

I had never thought about things this way and really wanted to share it.

Read on for a way to make requests that will get you a “YES”

I’m going to take my #1 cause of resentment during my 1st maternity leave and break it down.

 

SWEETIE, I REALLY NEED TO SLEEP.  

(I WISH CAPS + BOLD CONVEYED THE DESPERATION IN THIS SENTENCE.)

 

 

When we make a request, we are asking for our future to unfold in a different way.  When I make this request, I am afraid.  I request from a place of fear.  That I am not going to get sleep that day.  That my mental health is going to crash. And I am desparate.

 

There are several things that need to happen in a request:

1.) (You) need to be present and asking with intention, and not coming from a bad place (like fear.)

You can’t be avoiding eye contact or looking at your phone or cooking.  You need to put everything down. Make eye contact.  Touch their arm.  Have your energy be neutral.  Nobody can negotiate or request effectively from an emotionally charged place.

 

2.) (Your Partner) needs to be present too.  100% focus.    

Gain your partners’ attention by preceding this with “sweetie, I need your attention for a second here, do you mind just stopping what you are doing.”  Don’t let them do something else, or eat, or fiddle physically with something.

We may think it is easier to ask when they are distracted with something they enjoy, but it’s not… That’s a myth we have taken on.

3.)  To make a damn clear and effective request we have to clearly outline what we need using the background context of what led to this need, and what a condition of satisfaction would be.  What do you need to feel like your need is met? 

When we make a request there is an invisible background.  When I say “I need sleep” there is this movie loop of a screaming baby, my eyes rolling back into my head as I fall asleep rocking, the quiet desparation of lying on the couch, the bolts of terror with every snuffle once the baby wakes up.  There’s some intense shit behind a request when you are on mat leave, because we often wait until we’re about to go bonkers.

“Sweetie I need sleep”  (angry whisper that terrifies husband who answers in a somewhat noncommital ‘sure.’)

becomes

“Sweetie, I am physically, mentally and emotionally shattered after 6 hours sleep in three days. I’m starting to make big mistakes in my driving, in my daily activities that concern me.  I need to get some sleep in so that I can get a better grip on my emotions and get through tonight’s shift with the baby.  I need you to go out for a bit with the baby so I can fall asleep for at least 30 minutes without waking to their sounds.” (bam super effective request that engages husband and gets a solid ‘yes’ and concerned nod of understanding.)

We need to provide the details and outline what a sleep means to us.  Our definition of sleep is a fucked up one on mat leave.  It’s “I desparate need the recovery I haven’t gotten yet, so at least 4 hours unbroken without the baby around.”    Meanwhile, my partners’ definition of sleep may be a quick cat nap while the baby is crying somewhere in the house.

Why don’t we provide details when we make requests.  Why don’t we outline what “AAAARGH I JUST NEED TO BE ON MY OWN!” means?

-We always assume the person we are talking to,  knows what we mean.

But is that a fair assumption for us to make?

Have they had the chance to reach a desparate level of desire for alone time or sleep? Have they been alone in the house all day with a baby clinging to their bodies?

No.  It is hard for your partner to imagine, so you must outline clearly and provide a bit of context to your current state.

Here’s a great analogy a coach once shared with me: When you ask a waiter for water – you mean tap water.  The waiter has a different background of knowledge.   Water could mean carbonated, non carbonated, tap or mineral.  You have to be clear and never assume they know what you mean.  Set the context and clarify what you define your need to be.

I am giving you in this article the permission, the encouragement and the AUTHORITY to request what you need with power, clarity and context.

 

4.)  Think about what emotional place you make your request from.

If you walk into the room, anger crackling off of your body, or tears building behind the eyes, it instantly puts you in a disempowered situation.  The receiver is going to instantly go on the defense, or be uncomfortable.  The asker is going to compromise their request because emotion may take over.

Reset yourself.  Walk into the request from a feeling of power and confidence and self respect.  Not anger and resentment. It takes the wind out of your sales.  Not only in your voice and the way you word things, but also in your physical presence, the vibe you are giving off and your posture.   Nobody got what they wanted by asking from a defeated, curled up position.

I love this quote by the Chalmers Brothers “The right conversation in the wrong mood is the wrong conversation.” 

 

5.)  Follow up.  In order to help our partners support us better and take our requests seriously, we must express gratitude, explain to them how honouring your request helped you and them.  You must be sincere and display that we did something with the gift we were given.  They need to see that by following through on your request, everyone has benefitted.

After every sleep I go up and give my partner a huge hug and explain a few ways I’ll be better able to cope.  🙂

Please take this article and deconstruct a request you need to make.  Or perhaps, the requests you make that have led to no follow through and have created a situation of resentment toward your partner.  

Essays, Free Life Coaching Guides, Happiness, Learning, Personal Development

The Great Maternity Leave Essays: How to Become Deeply Inspired and Motivated

Why you should read this: I share with you an extremely important practice that the most productive, fulfilled and “switched on” people use. I use the analogy of a childrens’ toy you all know and love. This essay will inspire you to curate your social media, filter incoming information and engage in the pursuit of inspiring, motivational growth.

Reading time: 4 minutes.

Sometimes when I create images and typography to use as my featured image, it’s frustrating, because it’s IMPOSSIBLE to convey a lifetime of learning into one picture and a title, so my deepest hope is that somehow, some part of this essay today resonates with you.

 

Become Your Own Gatekeeper

There are thousands of social media platforms + people + organizations scrabbling for our attention.

If you think about it, you scroll through your Facebook news feed.  You whip down through all of the status updates, photos, sponsored links at a fast speed.  Imagine if we had commercials going at the same speed as we have scrolling on facebook going?  It would be madness. I would probably not be able to handle TV, period.  But when we scroll through social media it’s coming at us hard and fast. BOOM BOOM BOOM.  LISTEN TO ME! LISTEN TO ME! LISTEN TO ME! (coming at you from all corners.)

I’ll write sometime my thoughts about this fascinating “speed” of incoming information, but what I want to focus on is the volume and sources of information.

I am constantly talking about how precious and valuable your time is on maternity leave, because the structure of your free time has shifted and morphed.

Your time is now worth thousands of dollars an hour.  Advertisers know it.

When you casually sit down, pull out your phone and go on to social media, you hae just given air time to all of those posts, people, things competing for your attention.

Rather than being a passive recipient of information, we should become active curators.

Two months ago I sat down and thought about the messages, information, photos and people who line up with the goals I currently have, and the vision I have for my life.

Then, I spent about 2 hours unfollowing on facebook, instagram and twitter.  Then, I spent an hour specifically curating my feeds so that the only inflow on social media were things that support, inspire or motivate me to achieve my goals and mission.  Unrelated feeds, “distractors” went out of the window.  Any source of information that was unhelpful (or in some cases, even harmful, was gone.  ESPECIALLY those zillions of accounts out there that use fear & warnings to get you to click on their articles.  Parenting magazines, social media accounts know that fear is easy bait for a parent and they can hook you.)

Find Blogs, Podcasts, Pinterest Posts, Quotes, Tweets, Instagrams that inspire you.

Your job is to become a curator of inspiration.

Where many people go wrong, is they do it one or twice, make a pinterest board, save some quotes, and occasionally remember to find things that inspire them.

What the “greats” do is listen, view or read something EVERY.SINGLE.DAY.

They also do it first thing in the morning, to set their energy levels for the day.

 

So Why Do you Have a Childrens’ Toy on Your Featured Image?

Because it’s a constant effort and a constant hunt for inspiration. There are so, so many great voices and accounts out there. And the true reward is in the hunt. Each podcast that you find, website that you enjoy following, influencer that you like will boost you up a little bit more.

But you have to find the right fit for you.

When famed author & motivational speaker // influencer Wayne Dyer passed away, his family & estate made his entire library of works available online for a vastly reduced price. Last year, I downloaded his entire collection of books onto my kindle to read, while I was feeding my baby at night (this is a daily practice for me.)

I had heard about him constantly as I was finishing my professional ontological coach training.  He made wonderful points, but his writing style and language just didn’t land with me.   I was trying to fit a triangle toy into a square hole, just like the image on this post.

So I kept searching. I looked at what other people read on Amazon, read reviews and spent some money “investing in myself.”  I hold the view that for the price of a latte, I may find a book that change my life and the way I think.

A few months later I came across the works of Brian Tracy.  I had first been exposed to him while working at Lululemon as an Educator (one of the.best.jobs.of.my.life.)  but at that time I just wasn’t ready for his philosophies and advice.
Curious, I downloaded his book on Self-Confidence.

WHAM.

 

The book had a profound impact on me.  Every page, every section I thought “Yes!  Yes!  I agree!  I do this!” – it was incredibly validating and educational.  It nailed home practices that I thought were unimportant and it motivated me even more to make them daily habits.

In my enthusiasm, I raved about Brian Tracy and his book to a few people I knew.  I was very suprised that they weren’t as enthusiastic about Brian Tracy as they were about Wayne Dyer.

I realized I had just fit a square, into my square hole, but they were holding triangles.

We all have different shaped toys & different shaped holes to fit them into.  Keep searching.  Keep reading.  Keep trying out different philosophies and thinkers and inspiring people out.  For every 5 shapes that don’t fit, one is going to fit perfectly and profoundly influence you.

Think about someone or something that shifted the way you see your world.  Shifted the way you act, the way you think.  Remember how powerful that moment was? When it was almost like you could hear an audible “click” as your universe shifted + made sense in a new way?

Imagine having that happen every month while on maternity leave.

Your brain is currently in a gorgeous state of growth & activity.  New neural connections and pathways are being formed every single day.

It is like a sponge, learning and absorbing new information as you learn about this little human being, as you learn about your new role.

Right now, all sorts of new slots are appearing on your little toy box – so go out there and start collecting shapes, and start trying to fit them in the holes.  Soon you will have a beautiful toy, with colourful shapes fitting into each slot.

You know the look on your childs’ face when they finally fit a shape into a hole?  That look of knowledge and accomplishment and excitement?  

 

That is exactly, EXACTLY what you will experience.

 

Knowledge & inspiration are amazing “toys” to play with.  They will never wear out.  They will never become boring.  They become a permanent part of you.  You can share those toys – but nobody can ever take them away from you. 

Building a Business, Free Life Coaching Guides, Grounding, Happiness, Physical Wellness, The Projects

The Great Maternity Leave Project: Building a Business + Managing Technical Overwhelm

Why read this article:  Learn how to manage the overwhelm of starting a new business (especially the technical parts of establishing an online presence) + receive a professional coaching guide to manage the frustration of being a newbie all over again.

Reading time:  3 minutes + 3 minutes for the guide.

 

Today I’m going to talk about the sheer overwhelm that hits in the early days of building a web presence for your business.

In the hour before my kiddos were up, I tackled several things

-How to change the green social link buttons on my wordpress
-How to delete strange menu items that appeared

Try out a Facebook ad campaign not approved because “shit” was in my typing lol
-Why copy and pasting Facebook html code into my post wasn’t showing up
What SEO means
-A brief look at the google analytics tool and mega confusion over needing to upload an html file to my directory (WTF are either of those?!)

If you are starting a business and are creating a website or a blog, you are quickly introduced to the overwhelm of an industry that has its own language and technical terms.

Reading the help forums can feel like reading an instruction manual in japanese. Before you even get to the resolution stage, you are busy googling what every.single.word.means in the advice you get.

I’m going to show you some screen shots this morning, and my WTF moments.

Screen Shot 2016-02-18 at 8.46.20 AM

No problem.  I’ll click download.

Whoa.

WTF. How do I even upload an html file?

Oh.  The advice forum says I need to add it to my public directory

**Googles what a public directory is.***

-20 minutes.

 

Then…..

Screen Shot 2016-02-18 at 8.46.08 AM

Oh, sweet, adding an fb button looks easy (laughing out loud.)

-15 minutes to realize all of this shit is automatically built into WordPress for people like me.  Then opened the guide to figure out the “easy sharing feature”

-25 minutes 

 

OK so at that point I was down one hand because of this little creature smacking at the screen…..

Photo on 2016-02-18 at 8.24 AM

(Yes I’m wearing a housecoat.  Not glam blogger fashion.  I’m on mat leave.  Let’s be honest here.  I shall always blog with my coffee + white Lord & Taylor housecoat.)

 

So now we are one finger typing.  I’m on coffee #3 and getting aggravated, and my mind is racing.

This is when having professional ontological coach training comes in really handy.  I have to coach myself.  And you know what? I WISH I had someone during my 1st mat leave to write posts like this and talk to me like this.  To say “hey Carina, I’m in the same boat as you!”

That is why I started the Great Maternity Leave.

The reality is that there IS a steep learning curve, there IS lots of frustration, and there IS a TON of overwhelm in building an online business. 

I want you to have this coaching guide to managing the overwhelm.

Keep it + come back to it.  

 

x

 

Carina

 

 

 

 

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