Action Coach, Career Coach, Hypnotherapy, Life Coach, Lifestyle, Performance Coach, Personal coaching, Self Help

F.E.A.R

I can’t do it mum, I’m sorry.

RIGHT!

Oh dear. This isn’t good.

This was a bigger reaction than usual, I knew she was upset this time.

Although to be fair, if you had come out of work, picked your son up from school, driven him to the dentist, put him in the chair ready for a tooth out, only to find ‘the poor little soul has had a change of heart’ you might feel aggrieved at a completely wasted afternoon too.  I sat in the waiting room trying to ready myself for one of my back teeth out,  a very fake smile started to appear on my face. I couldn’t process my thoughts and the image of the dentist with a drill and a hacksaw was only getter bigger in my mind. Plus I didn’t want to let my mum down. The Fear. Oh the Fear.

What is Fear? Is it what we imagine? How many times in our lives is our imagined fear much worse than the reality? One of my favourite acronyms is-

False

Evidence

Appearing

Real

 I had a tooth out later in life, did it hurt? Mildly. Was there a dentist waiting to carve my gum open with a rusty scalpel. In short, no. What about the dreaded conversation with the angry partner, we rehearse what we are going to say all day- only to find they are sorry to. Maybe it’s the presentation at work, everyone will throw tomatoes at me and laugh at my ineptitude – only to see smiling faces and have the realisation that you were asked to do it for a reason. Fear carries a certain taboo, we’re not supposed to be fearful, or we don’t want to show it. This is because it’s where our vulnerabilities lie.

What happens though when we suppress how we feel?

Do our fears disappear? Or does our subconscious store it in our bodies for when we least want it be there. We pretend we’re not vulnerable, nervous, self conscious, or fearful and just when we want to show courageous we are. . . our neck and face goes red, our palms sweat, we can’t articulate what we are saying, our mind races, we fidget and twitch. This is your subconscious screaming …

YOU CAN’T LIE TO ME!!!  

I believe fear to be a completely understandable and powerful emotion, it is however irrational and stops us doing the vast majority of things in life. 

There is a saying in NLP ‘You know more than you think you know’ and what this simple but highly effective sentence challenges us to remember is our resourcefulness. As we all sit out and reflect in this difficult time, I ask you to think about when you have overcome fears in your life. How did it feel? Relief? Elation? Pride? The truth is we only feel alive when we are challenging our ‘fears’, when we are willing to take a risk or make a mistake. We may not always associate it with a pleasant feeling, but we certainly know when we come through it, and it gives us strength as we move on in life and we start to realise the only person stopping you: is you.

We drove away in silence from the dentist, my mind raced as I wondered what would become of this 10 year old boy with half a tooth still in his mouth. Would she abandon me by the roadside? Would I make it into school next day?

Turns out we just went home for bangers and mash.

If this sounds familiar then please get in touch. I’d love to help.

Action Coach, Career Coach, Hypnotherapy, Life Coach, Lifestyle, Performance Coach, Personal coaching, Self Help

What can I do?

These are testing times

From panic buying at the shops, to job insecurity and school closures. No one knows what the future  holds and the sense of everything changing rapidly can be overwhelming.  We are getting a constant news stream of what is going wrong, and what may go wrong. It’s very easy and entirely understandable to emotionally  ‘invest’ in the news. However what is said and what we hear can be two very different things. It’s very similar to our reaction to is happening and what may happen. Let’s look at panic buying as an example. At no time has the government said they plan to close supermarkets, indeed they have gone to great lengths to insist there is enough food for everybody, and yet we still see daily pictures of ransacked shelves. Are people not listening? What prompts somebody to buy more than they need despite zero threat to their food supply? The answer lies in the pictures we create. When we watch the news, it feeds our anxiety and we start to create a future in our mind where we are left bereft of food. The actions that follow are carried out because we think that will keep us safe from our own irrational fears.  It will keep us safe from a future that only exists in our head. Of course the reality is it creates a social tension, a sense of ‘every man for himself.’ Our energy is then spent on anger and derision at the actions of others.  Haven’t we enough on our proverbial plate without creating internal angst at the actions of others? It’s vital we deal with what IS happening and not what MAY happen.

So how do we decide what is worth our focus? How can we become calmer and more resourceful in times of stress? What would society look like if we didn’t escalate beyond the facts?

Firstly we need to accept our place in the order of things. Unless we work in the higher echelons of government we’re very unlikely to be able to shape policy and change the way others behave. So why invest our energy? Secondly we must acknowledge what can we directly effect, or in other words, what is in our control? Our minds don’t tend to do well when they’re carrying a lot of information, especially if that information is corrosive to our well being. Thirdly, ask yourself who is responsible for your thoughts and actions? As individuals we are very capable of making these decisions, and the more we concentrate on what is truly important the more resourceful we become. Lastly, and most importantly we need to be able to switch off, guilt free. This doesn’t mean pretending everything is OK, far from it.  It means giving your head a rest so it’s as healthy and calm as possible for the coming months.

Look after today, and tomorrow will get better in time.

If this sounds familiar then please get in touch.

Action Coach, Career Coach, Hypnotherapy, Life Coach, Lifestyle, Performance Coach, Personal coaching, Self Help

It’s not you, it’s me.

We’ll have salt and pepper chicken wings, a portion of spare ribs, beef in black bean sauce, and two portions of egg fried rice. Oh, and some prawn crackers.

Ahh. . . Chinese takeaway.

The perfect food whatever the weather, but particularly when you’re comforting a friend who recently ended their marriage. Lots of things can contribute to the breakdown of a relationship. The pain it causes means that at first It’s much easier to lay blame elsewhere, sometimes at the estranged partner or outside influences like ones career or money. The last thing we want to do is look at ourselves for the part we played. Did we enable or subconsciously promote undesirable behaviour in our partner? The disconnect between what we want and what believe we are worth is very prevalent for a lot of people. We just aren’t consciously aware of how our behaviour and thought patterns effect us and the person we want to love us.

 People act in the way you subconsciously want them to act.

What does this mean? Well, do you have a friend, family member or work colleague who always ends up with the same ‘sort’ of person? You can warn them, advise them, laugh with them, but nothing seems to stop the inevitable slide into another unfulfilled relationship. What does this suggest? That the person is actively looking to be hurt, unloved or not appreciated. . . Not for a minute!! However if we subconsciously believe that this is what we are worth then we frame our choices within that belief system. We chase love, affection, and quality time with someone because we believe we aren’t worthy, so we over compensate. This can mean the other person becomes used to things being easy for them, so they stop investing in the relationship because they don’t have to. The very things that we want we drive away. The old adage the more you give the more they take is very true.

We can’t control what others think, and we can’t take responsibility for somebody else’s happiness. However what we can do is understand what are value’s are. What are our red lines?  I can’t promise anyone happiness or love in their relationships, but I do know this – the more you love you, the more you know your value, the more will you be pleasantly surprised by who comes into your life.

Now, pass me the chopsticks.

If this sounds familiar then please get in touch

Action Coach, Career Coach, Hypnotherapy, Life Coach, Lifestyle, Performance Coach, Personal coaching, Self Help

Spot the difference

‘You’re a bit weird dad.’

 Once the searing honesty had subsided, I thought for a second about my eight year old’s pearl of wisdom.

‘Well, it’s good to a bit weird. I replied.

When she said this, I’d like to think she was referring to my love of Spandau Ballet. (Fair cop). But I sensed it was my commitment to an impression I was doing to make her laugh. It struck me afterwards about how we define ourselves and others as ‘weird’ or ‘not normal.’ Is it the job we do?  If you are a deep sea diver off the North Atlantic then you are in the minority compared to a factory worker. However both equally provide for an individual and their loved ones.  Is it our colleagues? The person who is socially awkward at work? Maybe they haven’t been given or shown the tools to cope in life? Is it our family? Why is one sibling totally different from the rest when given the same upbringing by their parents? It strikes me as ‘weird’ how quickly we see the difference in others without looking at our own oddities. . .

Why do we conform to being ‘normal’ or at the very least wanting to be perceived as normal? Must have kids. Must earn loads of money. Must get married. There is nothing wrong with any of those choices as long as they are your choices and they don’t come from a need or desire to fit in socially. So often we miss out on what is around us because we are consumed by where we aren’t, what we’re not earning, who we are not with. How much of our lives do we spend thinking about fitting in, instead of embracing who we really are?  I’d like to think we are all bit weird, we all have parts of us that we suppress out of embarrassment or fear. But the truth is, this is where our soul lies, it’s what makes us an individual. What makes you stand out? What makes you, you?

To cut a long story short.

It’s true,

I am weird.

If this sounds familiar, then drop me an email. I’d love to help.

Action Coach, Career Coach, Hypnotherapy, Life Coach, Lifestyle, Performance Coach, Personal coaching, Self Help

I am who I am.

‘It’s how i was brought up.’

I’ve heard this line many times in my life. When we think about what defines us, we can often blame our behaviour and thoughts on things that have happened to us. A big indicator for this is our parents. The things we learn from them as we are growing up stay with us into adulthood, and if we aren’t consciously aware of what those learnings are it’s easy to fall back on old patterns and put barriers up when life throws things at us. An example would be when we feel we can’t do something or we don’t want to feel a certain way.  Clients will often say to me, ‘I’d love to be able to do it, but I don’t feel confident enough.’ They will then go on to tell me various other areas of their life where they have shown great confidence!

As people we are reservoir of resources, so what are we choosing to not know about ourselves?

 The things that we see as negative in ourselves are also our greatest strength. What does this mean? Well the person who is sensitive and takes things to heart, is also the same person who is very good at listening, and empathising with people. The person who is shy, is also the same person who is confident.  All of us are many things to many different people. Think about how many different parts of ourselves we must utilise in a single day to make of the most it.  We are who we are because of what has happened to us, not in spite of it. So the next time you want to blame a parent, sibling, or friend for your behaviour, blame them for all the good in you.

After all, it’s how you were brought up. 

If this sounds familiar, then drop me an email. I’d love to help.

Action Coach, Career Coach, Hypnotherapy, Life Coach, Lifestyle, Performance Coach, Personal coaching, Self Help

Does This Make Sense?

When I was at Drama School, I was told that the things I was being taught might sense tomorrow, next week, next year or in ten years. This comment has always stuck with me throughout my career. 

 Sometimes our insistence on understanding can be very detrimental, not allowing ourselves the time to develop and grow. ‘ I should know this’ or ‘why don’t I get it?’ This conveniently misses the point that to be confused is very healthy, because confusion precedes learning, and if you’re learning then you’re growing. Often our need to know or understand is  due to a disconnect between our conscious and subconscious mind. Do we trust our ability to listen to information and let our subconscious filter and process this in its own time?

Life isn’t linear. What informs our decisions, thinking, or our understanding changes over time and circumstance. We think we know what we are doing , until we make a mistake. Then we chastise ourselves that ‘we should know better’ but should we? Or where we doing our best with we had in that moment? That mistake that we get angry about, actually informs and strengthens us as we learn from it and are better equipped the next time we are in that situation. Being prepared to make mistakes, or to put yourself in situations where you might not understand, is a far richer experience than staying in the bubble of only knowing what you do understand.

 It has taken me a long time and a lot of mistakes to get to where I am. Some things made sense ten years ago, some things made sense last year and some things still don’t make sense.

It’s a lovely place to be.

Career Coach, Hypnotherapy, Life Coach, Performance Coach, Personal coaching

Are you thinking what I’m thinking?

“Will you hold my pint for me?”

I was asked this recently at a gig by close friend, not because they had a tiny bladder, but because they wanted to get their phone out and hold it above their head as the band played their biggest anthem.  On the way home I asked him why he was filming it, instead of enjoying the moment?

“I just put it on my Facebook and Instagram page.”

“Why?”

“So people can see what I’ve been up to.”

“But you missed one of your favourite songs. . . “

“I didn’t, I was there.”

I was there. . Mmmm.

It’s true my friend was there in body, but at the most important point of the gig his mind was elsewhere. He chose to focus on the external, on what others might think or say about his attendance at the concert. Maybe the outside world is desperate to know my friend has got a social life, maybe their lives are so devoid of enjoyment they rely on him for constant updates. . .

While we were talking it struck me how much we do in this life. We sit at home with our children, partner, or parents and we can be having a lovely time, but where are we really? Worrying about what we said to somebody, or planning a difficult conversation at work. All this relies on the idea that everybody else cares more about you than they do about themselves. Which of course is a total fallacy, as people outside of your inner circle couldn’t care less about your worries, your upcoming difficult conversation or your shaky video of a band they don’t like on your Facebook page.

How much calmer and fulfilling would our lives be if we could stay in the moment, and not create a false narrative about what other people are thinking?

As we walked away from the din of the stadium crowd, I could see my friend needed a break.

“Come on, lets pop in here for a beer.”

“Is it my round?”

“No I owe you one, I drank yours watching the band.”

If this sounds familiar drop me an email. I’d love to help you.