s2uy5juvtzxj.hopezvara.com.
Speak Up: How to Communicate Better

Speak Up: How to Communicate Better

Do you know those things that make you sweat? The things that make you feel anxious? The ones that make you want to apologize when you didn’t even do anything wrong? Well, that is how I feel when it comes to verbal communication.

Communication has never been a strength of mine. Well, let me rephrase that–verbally communicating how I feel and what I need has never been easy for me. My brain was wired to devalue my feelings and needs and overvalue another. It was a learned behavior that I needed to learn how to harness. 

Courage to Communicate

I remember distinctly the first time I verbally voiced what I needed to my husband. 

My husband and I were sitting on the couch one night after he had gotten home from work. I knew that walking, yoga and physical activity helped me manage my anxiety and could feel my anxiety slowly creeping up. I wanted to go for a walk by myself to breathe, take a time out from the kids, and relax. However, with two small kids at home and a husband that was working a very physical job, I felt that his happiness and relaxation were more important than mine. Asking for a “break” made me feel guilty. 

However, at that moment, I knew exactly what I needed and I needed it so badly I had no choice. I swallowed my fear and verbally communicated to my husband that I needed to go for a walk. I paused. And waited. Brian, my husband, said, “Go, hun. I’m good”  without flinching. I felt an immediate sense of relief at that moment. 

This may not seem like a big deal to some but for me, it was a milestone. That moment where I voiced my needs and wants set a solid foundation for my future. Today, I am able to voice bigger things like my views on parenting, life, and business. It’s also led me to now be able to agree to disagree, be okay with someone not liking what I have to say, and setting time for myself and not feel like I have to ask for permission. 

Learning How to Listen

About ten years into recovery, I discovered that I didn’t know how to effectively communicate. I also learned that how well you listen has a major impact on the quality of your relationships with others.

I didn’t know how to listen. I was continually projecting what I thought others were thinking and saying before they even finished talking. With that, I was actually preparing for a rebuttal and would instantly shut down or bark back the moment I would receive a response that I didn’t like. 

I had to relearn how to listen.  

Even though listening may ‘sound’ easy, listening well is a gift that not everyone has. Improving your ability to listen well will enable you to assess situations with more clarity and gain insight into other people, their opinions and the overall circumstances of an event. Listening well can prevent you from misreading a situation and making mistakes –like I was doing. 

Make Your Voice Heard

I decided somewhere along my journey, with the help of the yoga I know, meditation, and fully embracing the love of those around me to press on. To keep voicing up. To keep asking those uncomfortable questions. To say what I need to say.

Speak up, friend. You deserve to speak. You have something valuable to say and your voice matters.

And each time it will only get better. Each time you voice up and choose to communicate instead of hold it in, you will get better at it. Each time you ask that uncomfortable question it feels less uncomfortable. Each time you will get more precise at what you need to say and how you need to say it.

Clear Communication

Work in Progress

I have learned time and time again in life and business that it is MY responsibility to ask questions, inquire, and do research if needed. This practice, in a sense, is putting myself first, and at the same time putting the other person first as well, because now communication is open. My advice, start with safe people. Start in safe environments and with small less scary things to communicate. For me, it was wanting to go for a walk. For you it may be voicing that you want Mexican food tonight instead of just saying “I don’t care”. 

Full disclosure, doing these things is super hard for me. Still, I’ve discovered that time and time again; I am continually putting others’ well-being, happiness, comfort, and satisfaction above mine. And I am so grateful I have developed an ever-growing toolbox to help me build up these muscles in my life and business.

Let me help you get rid of stress so you can press on to the next phase of your life.

Check out my blog: 3 Yoga Poses to Banish Stress Instantly

Goal Setting in 2020 – Starts Now

Goal Setting in 2020 – Starts Now

2020 is here! And that meals setting your goal(s) starts now!

Let’s do the party dance! 
Yes, sure, you are right… It’s just another day. 
But it doesn’t have to be. You can make 2020 be great! 

GOALS

Do you set goals? 
Do you set goals and are you someone who disciplines oneself to reach them?

Here’s what I discovered after years of feeling like I failed when it came to promises to change my life…

5 Things I Was Doing That Sabotaged My Success:

1. I was trying to change too many things at the same time. 
2. I forgot that I needed to ASK safe people for support
3. I only saw the big goals, I didn’t know how to set or see the small ones. 
4. I’d mess up once and think “failure”.
5. I was afraid to be doing something others around me weren’t. 

This is only a small list. But my thinking was so black and white.

So unrealistic, and unwilling to start small that I just keep stumbling. I had this idea that if I couldn’t “do it” and it be right from the beginning then somehow I was sucking. 

I believe we do this and more as a way to protect ourselves from failure. Because who wants to feel the pain of failure. But what I have come to discover is, the pain of not trying is worse. 

Have you ever been there? Are you there? 

I’ve got news for you…you don’t need to be perfect, but you do need to be honest. And as underwhelming as this might be… starting small goals is a sure fire win to build a new habit, avenue and a finish line that you can feel proud and amazing with! 

So this year- 2020, I’m older, smarter, stronger, and wiser (I think)… And want to share with you what I have done for myself when it comes to reaching my goals.  

My 2020 Jump-start New Year’s Goal Plan: 

1. Revisited my TOP 10 GOALS I had set for myself. 
2. Looked at each and revisited my mini goals that create the road map to get to those goals…. (this is critical). 
3. Asked myself what I NEED to make these happen: scheduled time to workout, yoga, walk.
GET TO BED BY 10PM, Drink 1/2 my body weight in ounces of water EVERY SINGLE DAY! Finally, not scheduling clients in during my family time. 

I know these might seem simple, not that fancy. Or even obvious. But the thing is… For YEARS I never wrote down my goals. 

So I want you to know something today. If you don’t write it down… It’s not going to happen. If you don’t take the time to make a plan, don’t expect your life to have time to experience it. 

Notice what you resist. 
Notice what you tell yourself is dumb, or small. 
Notice what you avoid. 

These are probably, most-likely the VERY things you need to start doing RIGHT NOW!

It’s such a mind game it’s crazy! Don’t wait. 
Stop with the excuses and get to it. 

You don’t need yoga 7 days a week, if you can’t even get to the mat for one. 
You don’t need to stop eating every bad food for you on the planet, if you can’t even get yourself to eat one good food. 
You don’t need a new life, maybe all you need first is a new perspective on your life. 

I believe you can do this. 
I believe that 2020 can be a great year for you. 
I believe that anything truly is possible, but first you have to start telling yourself it is, and showing yourself with steps you can easily get to for a good WIN!

I believe in you… do you believe in you?

Do you have a goal in mind?

Do you want something?

Well what are you waiting for?

Happy New Year! Do You Have the Tools to Start the Year Off Right?

Happy New Year! Do You Have the Tools to Start the Year Off Right?

Happy New Year! It’s an opportunity we get every 365 days. What a great feeling! A new year, a new perspective, and a fresh start.

As a new year begins, many people make resolutions in an effort to better themselves. However, I don’t necessarily like resolutions. Resolutions tend to set people up for disappointment. So, instead of making resolutions again this year, set goals. 

To be honest, I’ve never used to spend time to sit down and set goals for myself. Of course, I always had an “idea” of what I wanted to do each year but that’s pretty much it. So, when I sat down to write out my personal and professional goals for next year, I realized that I had NO idea how to do it. What was I supposed to do? What was the point?  None. However, it’s something that I needed to figure it out and figure out quick. 

Enter, John Maxwell. 

How Successful People Think

John Maxwell is the New York Times bestselling author of How Successful People Think. In his book, Maxwell’s advice really hit home. He encourages people to be “big-picture thinkers.” Big picture thinkers keep broader, bottom-line goals in mind no matter what the task is and no matter how big or small it is. He states that “the purpose of a goal is to focus your attention and give direction, not to identify a final destination.” Finally, something that makes sense! Set smaller goals to reach your bigger goal–GENIUS! 

So, as I sit down to set my goals for the new year, I now have a plan. My smaller goals will allow me to reach my bigger goals.  I have my goals written down and for the first time in forever– I know what I need to do and I know what I must do in order to get there. There is a lot less “I wonder” and “I hope” thoughts filling my head and to be honest, it feels good. I am approaching the new year with the confidence and tools that I need to be successful. What a great feeling. 

Whether you are beginning a fitness routine, creating a better plan of attack for meal planning, or yes, tackling the task of running your own business–set goals, stay the path and remain mentally clear. You can do it!

Check out these 5 Tips on Setting REALISTIC Resolutions!

Here’s to an amazing New Year! Cheers!

5 Tips to Set Realistic New Years Resolutions

5 Tips to Set Realistic New Years Resolutions

It’s a yearly tradition to deal with broken promises to take better care of ourselves. Whether we planned to lose weight, adopt a new exercise routine, eat healthier, or eliminate a bad habit, we seem to repeatedly let ourselves down. The fact is, only about 20% of us keep our New Years Resolutions, most of which are in some way fitness-related.

Over the years, I have been notorious for bogus New Year’s goals.

Having spent most of my life as an addict, though, I’ve accumulated some stepping stones that have helped me keep on my path. I consider this realistic goal-setting for a healthy life. I urge you to see your resolutions in a new light.

Here are 5 Ways to Set Realistic New Years Resolutions:

1. Be realistic.

Be honest about what you are capable of achieving. As I tell my yoga students often, “It’s not about how many classes you should come to a week, but how many classes you think you can continue to come to without dropping off.” Your goal could be to stop eating after 9 p.m., and then in a month, it bumps up to 8 p.m. and so on. Changes should never be all or nothing. Give yourself grace by setting realistic expectations for yourself.

2. Don’t use the same resolution again.

Set a new goal. This is a new opportunity to do something great for yourself. If you struggled to achieve that goal last year, maybe it needs to be rethought.

I’m sure the same tape plays in all of our heads during the holidays: “I’m just going to eat and enjoy myself. After the New Year, my diet starts.” This line is used by countless people, but it means nothing. If you are going to eat chocolate throughout December, then own it! In the New Year, if you say you aren’t going to eat chocolate, then good luck. But if you have said this before, odds are the same cycle is going to repeat itself.

3. Let everyone know about your goals.

As an addict, I know that the more you keep things secret, the harder it is to attain your goals. Even things like weight loss, new food choices or exercise plans should be shared with an accountability partner, family, or friend. Working through recovery has taught me that the more people you have on your side and the fewer secrets you have, the more successful you become.

Are you too embarrassed? Own up and be proud that you have recognized a change you need to make. Don’t go at it alone. Ask people to hold you accountable. Odds are that they will be proud to be an inspiration and support system for you.

4. Just Drink (More Water, that is).

When the body and brain are dehydrated, we feel sluggish. We confuse hunger for thirst, and we don’t function as we should.

If you are partaking in a fitness-related resolution, I urge you to drink up. Try to drink at least half your body weight in ounces a day, as a starting point. I begin each morning with an eight-ounce glass of warm water with lemon essential oil.

5. Watch for Self-Sabotage.

We all claim that we don’t have time, are too tired or stressed, or don’t have the money. Well, walking outside is free, screen time can be exchanged for exercise time, and it’s possible that your eyes and mind are drowsy from constant staring at the computer screen. You may just need an exercise boost, or to get to bed a little bit earlier!

Call yourself out about all these excuses! Be honest, because from honesty, new things begin.

 

If you are considering working with a coach to help you achieve your goals, consider joining me in my Practices for a Positive and Productive Life Masterclass, starting in January 2020! We are offering a Beta Course, four months of coaching, for just $497 ($1,000 off original price).

Happy New Year!

 

Here are more New Year’s Resolution and Goal Setting Resources:

[FREE WORKSHEET] Stepping into the New Year with New Insights

Goal Getter: The #Last90Days of the Year

How to Get Out of a Rut

 

This article was originally published in Nature’s Pathways in January 2014.

Pin It on Pinterest