What’s the New Fairy Tale?
Over the holidays, I enjoy streaming the Hallmark Channel in the background as I cook, wrap, and catch up on work. The movies are addictive and full of festive spirit, but they all follow one of the old fashioned otherworldly story lines:
-A Scrooge gets won over for the holidays by interacting with a true believer
-Characters have forgotten the real meaning of life getting too wrapped up in work until they come to their senses and realize nothing is more important than love and family
-Coupled with the wrong people, the leads realize they are unhappy trying to be someone they are not when they run into the “right” match
-Having been hurt in the past, one person is afraid to be vulnerable when the other player gets them to take a chance on love
When I saw a scene of women vying to get the good luck charm that predicted who would marry next, I realized these themes were probably outdated because we haven’t identified new myths to take their place.
Do we have to choose between work and family? Can you be dedicated to your career and also enjoy a great romantic relationship? Are people destined to be labeled as optimists or realists? Can we have it all? Is aspiring to have it all part of the problem?
I wonder if I have felt guilty and unfulfilled trying to live up to a fairy tale. What is the new ideal? Are we ready to let pipe dreams catch up with reality? Please share your thoughts.
Make “Shift” Happen!
With boundless energy and an adventurous spirit, I set out to seek my fortune, living in Japan and Russia and learning languages and cultures. The topic that has always fascinated me the most, though, is working with human nature – what makes us tick? Where do our quirks and unproductive behaviors come from? Can people really change and how?
My programs offer more than just information, entertainment, and engagement. By embodying the material and revving up the attendees with insights, ah-has, and a clear road to results, my intention is to facilitate implementation.
Every talk and training I deliver comes with a “Transmission System” for shifting thought into action.
Caring is Rescuing?
I was at what Landmark Worldwide calls the Advanced Course staying in Chicago. The big theme of this course is “Everybody Gets It.” They are referring to the transformation you experience in the Landmark Forum isn’t complete until EVERYBODY gets it.
They break us into groups to do activities and hold one another accountable. At one point I announced to the group that, “I just don’t really care about people.” I began to offer proof of how little I actually care about people when a tough Russian guy in our group looked me in the eye and said, “I think it’s the opposite.” I stat stunned for a moment, then teared up at having been found out by both him and myself. All the concern I felt for everyone that I had been hiding and denying started coming out. Everything felt different. The caring version of me experienced things vividly, mindfully, and gently. I was tempted on multiple occasions to slip back into uncaring where it was safe and easy. I could barely do anything without wanting to cry. I asked how I was supposed to teach my seminars like this, and the group leader suggested I could be the “Crying Trainer.”
As I suspected, it was impractical to go about life exposed and sensitive, so I climbed back into my shell.
The reason I haven’t married or had kids is also the opposite of what I say it is. In reality, I care so much and feel responsible for someone I care about to such an extreme that I will subjugate myself in exchange for their well-being all the time. I feel guilty doing what I want and feel like I have to cater to them 24/7. I play the martyr and then resent them for my sacrifice. I am then angry and surly, pushing away the very people I care so much about, leading them not to like me so I can then escape – or at least that’s the idea. It never really works that way.
It’s like somehow it is my responsibility to make sure everyone else is always okay. And if they aren’t, I am to make them happy in whatever way I can. I know this goes against the laws of human nature, but I have these inclinations and feel I constantly need to be the superhero.
As a trainer and coach, I have to fight these inclinations. You can’t do someone else’s push-ups for them. And sheltering people from their own lessons renders them helpless in the end. Perhaps tough love is tougher on the mentor than on the client.
Where are you letting people off the hook in your life and work? What might be the payoff for you?
A Great Deal?
The women in my family have a tendency to shop to earn their keep. I mean the feeling is that if I buy stuff on sale, I’ve almost made money, which would be true if it was actually stuff we would have needed to buy anyway, but … you know what I’m getting at.
Well, the grocery store up the street was going out of business, and everything was half price. It was day four of the sale, so things were pretty picked over. I did find a few things I would have bought anyway down the first three aisles I perused, but I was being careful not to get too much – even at half price.
I heard some chatter in the next aisle, and the manager came by me and said, “Did you hear? You can fill up that cart for $25. We want all of you to help us empty out this place, so we can close today.”
I hurried back to the aisle where I had passed on the expensive coffees and grabbed four varieties. I headed to the Isle where the protein packs of nuts had almost made it to my cart. I grabbed some dark chocolate. Then I headed for the jerky and the juice. I took every pouch of tuna they had and every can of southwest corn (I make this corn dip about 10 times a year, and it requires 4 cans at a time).
I commented to a young woman who was waiting in front of me to get through the aisle that I was impressed at how civilized everyone was being.
The frozen food aisle brought fruit, smart ones dinners, and ice cream. I paid $29.28 and headed into the parking lot with a heaping cart. A man outside offered to help me unload it so he could use my cart. His name was John, and I ended up giving him some of the coffee.
I had filled up my whole back seat, and wasn’t sure what I would do with all the groceries. I called my friend, Autumn, to see if she wanted some of it. I still had to fill a trunk with canned goods. I had several things to do today, but this ended up being a big production that took up three hours.
Now I feel like I have to hurry and eat it all up to get rid of it. Despite all the groceries I bought, there wasn’t really anything to eat for dinner – except for frozen dinners and ice cream.
I guess I’ll give myself credit for having earned $375 today, since I bought about $400 of groceries for $25.
The Hash House Harriers
I just started running with the Hash House Harriers – A Drinking Club with a Running Problem. I “hashed” a little when I lived in Moscow, and it kind of reminded me of Toastmasters for people who like to get together, get active outdoors, and do some drinking.
Someone called the “hare” lays a trail in advance of the group’s arrival. There is a “chalk talk” where the hare explains the markings he or she left along the trail. There are always some situations where there are dead ends and unusual routes through various obstacles and “checks.” They also have beer stops and shots along the route where everyone waits for all the walkers to catch up before proceeding. Those who run ahead indicate what they are finding in the markings by hollering and whistling. It is usually just through normal city streets, so we make our marks with flour and toilet paper. Like a lot of old-school clubs, there is a lot of tradition and ritual. You wear long socks, H3 shirts, and often hats. Everyone also has a homemade necklace made out of beaded tiles that contain your “Hash Name.” You have to hash for awhile before you get a name. I had been called “Sampler” when I hashed in Russia, so I made my own beaded necklace with S-A-M-P-L-E-R dangling from it and the obligatory whistle.
Every hash ends with a “circle” where various people are called out and reviled with various insulting, dirty, or party-themed songs. They have tens of songs where they’ve altered the lyrics to be dirty or about drinking and hashing. The hare is always the first person brought into the circle. We all tell them how much the trail they laid sucked, singing a song to that effect.
You get called out for finishing in front or in back, for having a special occasion or not hashing for a while or not wearing hash gear. Then there are accusations where hashers point out (Hashers point with their elbows) things others have done that cause them to deserve being singled out.
Then at the end, they ask anyone who has not been brought into the circle for anything to come in and pay penance for that. Each separate group brought into the circle gets a song sung to them and then is asked to “Drink it down, down, down . . .” Old rules were that you had to drink all of whatever you brought into the circle or pour what was left over your head. Now you can just hold the drink over your head when you’re done.
I really like the long, strenuous walks in diverse areas outside. I also like drinking beer and hanging out with lots of people. It is good to be a part of something.
My Tough Love Confession
Every coach I have had has let me off the hook even when I asked them to be very tough on me. Tough love is not about being tough on the person, it is the ultimate way to care about a person . . . by being tough on their “inner stuff,” the hardware of our brains that fights change and holds us back.
Get Certified as a Life and Executive Coach Online This Year
The Professional Coach Academy’s Certified Professional Coach Course Outline
Understanding What Coaching is and What Coaches Do
What coaching is and why it is so powerful
What coaches do exactly and where to draw the line with other modalities
Most “coaches” are not really coaching, so what is a good coach?
What clients think coaching is vs. what it really is
What clients are actually buying and how to make sure they know you delivered it
Coaching Techniques and Practices (Hands-on)
The initial coaching conversation
Building trust, rapport, and cooperation with clients
The first coaching session
Helping clients discover what they want and be motivated to get it
Using questions to help clients shift perspective and make discoveries
Identifying and clearing blocks and repeated behavior patterns
The second and subsequent coaching sessions
Helping clients create accomplishable plans and holding them accountable to follow through
Logistics and Business Configuration
Setting up your practice: choices and recommendations
Outline of coaching sessions and long-term “curriculum”
Particulars of your coaching process: timing, medium, deliverables
Getting paid to coach: determining price and collecting payments
Growing your business to make more while working less
Marketing Yourself to Create a Flow of Incoming Clients
Branding yourself based on your purpose and your target niche
Finding and reaching your target client niche
Composing your compelling marketing message and materials
Keeping a flow of new prospects in your pipeline
Succeeding effortlessly online with a web page and social media
Content marketing, and creating passive residual income
Creating and managing your reputation
Continuing education modules on marketing and coaching
90-Minute one-on-one “Coach Incubator” session
Private Facebook group for collaboration and support
Active participation in all exercises and activities while exhibiting an understanding of all core concepts are required to achieve the designation of Certified Professional Life Coach
This 16-credit-hour course comprises introductory self-paced video modules with 10 or more hours of live training and hands-on practice via webinar. Your instructor, Sherry Prindle, is a 15-year veteran trainer and Top 100 coach. 817 657-5301
What is Your Brick Wall?
What is it, that thing that keeps coming back that you don’t seem able to escape? Is it a habit, emotional control issue, fear, lack of confidence, communication problem, motivational block, or something else?
What if our quirks, hang-ups, and issues are just a byproduct of our subconscious survival mechanism – the remains of a childhood experience that imprinted us? And what if by identifying this childhood wound and cultivating new habits of thought and action we could overcome them?
Behavior Change 101
The Anatomy of Habits by Sherry Prindle
Are there some things you’ve been wanting to change about yourself, perhaps for a long time? Every time you think about how does it feel? You don’t need to kick yourself or be demoralized. There are many things that make behavior change a struggle, the first being that we may not know the fundamental process of creating permanent change. Outlined here are the basic rules of creating permanent change. They have the potential of creating a “No Wonder!” response and giving you a path to habit-change success.
One day Julie decided she wanted to stop drinking coffee. She woke up the next day and made a pot without even thinking and was halfway into her first cup before she noticed.
Rule 1: Good Intentions Fade and Are Superseded by Routines. Just like you set an alarm to wake up in the morning, the minute you decide to make a change, set up a way to remind yourself of your decision when you get back into the daily routine.
Julie put the coffee pot away and gave all the coffee she had on hand to a neighbor. She got up the next morning sluggishly forcing herself to get ready and out the door. At work she was frazzled, stressed, and disconnected. At her morning break, she poured a cup at work like she always had.
Rule 2: Life is a Dance; It’s in the Choreography. What is the pattern, what exactly you do as a part of the behavior you want to change, when you engage in it (times or situations) and why? Every time Tim sighs, Sally starts wondering why he keeps working there if he’s so unhappy, then she gets angry and stops smiling. When Sally stops smiling, Pat thinks she’s mad . . . In other words, there is a trigger and a predictable set of actions that follow it. Discovering the pattern is the first step toward breaking it. Procrastination could be part of a whole self-motivation ritual we are an unconscious participant in.
It was break time. What was Julie supposed to do, after all, it wasn’t called coffee break for nothing? She decided not to take a break but couldn’t concentrate on her work; she needed something to occupy her hands and satisfy her craving so she could think.
Rule 3: You take the action because it meets a need. Figure out what the payoff is for doing the thing you want to change, so you can continue to get the need met. One theory is that what smokers really want is a chance to get away and breathe deeply and systematically. Going to a bar may not be about drinking at all; it may be a necessary after-work ritual. Snacking may be a calming mechanism.
Struggling through another day without coffee, Julie had a big presentation to give and needed a pick-me-up. She felt uneasy going in front of others without the alert feeling the caffeine gave her, and the warm, steamy sensation as she drank it grounded her.
Rule 4: Motivation comes from pain and pleasure. Psych yourself up by thinking about the pain staying the same has caused, is causing, and will cause in the future if you don’t change (Anthony Robbins uses a process he calls the “Dickens Pattern” to get “leverage” on yourself. While you are in the process of changing, only the negative aspects of the change make themselves evident. If you also look at the positives, how much better you’ll be when you have achieved the goal, and remind yourself of the pain of staying the same as well as the pleasure of making the change, motivation can remain strong.
After Julie’s presentation went well, she decided to abandon her goal; “I’m entitled to one vice,” she thought. Remorse set in afterward, but at the time the pain of staying the same did not outweigh the pain of changing.
Rule 5: You can’t stop a habitual behavior; find a replacement instead. The behavior meets a need, remember, but the replacement may be something completely unrelated or there may be multiples. Try several replacements until one feels doable.
Julie realized that she always sat down and read with her coffee, which allowed her to ground and reflect in the morning, so she brought back the reading but without the coffee. At work, she read that eating an apple would make you more alert than drinking a cup of coffee, so she always brought two small ones to work. For stress, though, it was the warmth of the cup and the liquid going down that created a reassuring sensation, so she did find a replacement liquid that felt but didn’t taste good. She still felt a strong desire for the original habit of drinking coffee.
Rule 6: Resistance stays strong for 21 days while your subconscious is retrained. After three weeks, you will notice the new behavior starts to become automatic and you’re on your way toward achieving a permanent habit. The survival mechanism is wired such that we do not completely change our way of being for an isolated incident. 21 consecutive days is the magic amount of time it takes to prove to the subconscious mind that the new behavior is to be permanent. You will still feel inclined toward the old behavior, but the resistance is much weaker and the new behavior is beginning to feel right.
The Structure Secret
The queen of Succeeding by the Seat of my Pants for most of my life, I now coach people to have structure. Structure always wins out, and we already have structures in place . . . they’re called habits. Most of these habits were programmed into us by the time we turned 5 years old, which means we didn’t get to have any input into many of our ways of being.
Structures need to have a long-term focus with short-term accountability. I’ve created a diagram to illustrate the elements of a good structure: