by Suzie Doscher
Just as life is constantly changing, the brain is constantly changing. It is through repetition that thinking patterns, and consequently behaviour patterns can be shifted, tweaked, changed or completely replaced with more positive empowering ones.
Through practice and repetition neuroscience has shown the brain can be rewired
This is fantastic news especially for anybody wishing to improve the quality of their life for this change process. Making, and more importantly sustaining, any changes in thinking or in behaviour patterns, would be very difficult, if not impossible, without this scientific truth. Knowing this offers coaching clients not only motivation but also confidence to continue on the path to 'change', which sometimes can be a difficult one.
Over the last few decades, studies in neuroscience have shown the 'default network' you were born with can be changed. This happens by creating new neural pathways. The 'default network' ensures your survival by detecting and responding to threats, such as a tiger about to eat you! The 'default network' generates a 'fight or flight' response to increase the odds of survival. However it can become hypersensitive, interfering with your ability to experience the present moment in a more open and relaxed manner. The production of neurochemical and molecular changes in the cells known as neurons is how the changes in the brain occur. While going through the process of learning how to think / do or behave differently new neurons are being produced. Neurons are messengers communicating by transmitting electrical signals.
Creating new neural networks requires actions
Thoughts generate a chemical reaction in the brain. The same chemical reaction takes place every time you think the same thought - be it a negative one or a positive one. A person has trillions of brain cells, resulting in thousands of these chemical reactions. In order to successfully make a change in a thought pattern, and ultimately a behaviour pattern, you have to activate as many of these pathways as possible given that they work synergistically. One pathway alone is not enough to successfully rewire your brain.
Repetitive positive thoughts change your physical brain
The goal of coaching is to align your beliefs, feelings, vision, and actions with who you are and your goals. Time has to be allowed for practice and repetition to successfully re-frame / replace a negative thought with a positive empowering one. Just like exercise, this requires repetition to reinforce new learning. Thoughts and feelings have to align. In other words, you will not succeed to create new pathways by eating lots of sweets while telling yourself you are fit and healthy.
What this means for coaching
If you are of the mindset that working with a coach is the way to go person this already shows potential for improvement. Successful coaching creates a healthy brain environment promoting positive thought and positive activity.
Once the goal of the coaching is, not only defined and clear, but also realistic the coach will use a variety of tools to activate the client's internal resources and life skills. Within this phase, the rewiring can already begin. Bad thought patterns and habits are explored, examined and re-framed/replaced. Making sure the goal has a realistic time frame will support the feeling of success. Feeling success supports creating positive feedback to the brain, this motivates you to keep going. The more changes made, the more the brain is rewired, by having formed new neural pathways.
It is exciting to be on the path of change with clients. I compare it to helping them heal ‘wings that have been clipped.’ With coaching they learn to fly freely again.
As Simon Sinek says: “There is no app for job satisfaction and strong relationships / friendships. These take time! Require patience! – Trust and open communication cannot happen when people have their mobiles with them ALL the time! Hard habit to break but worth the quality of life you can gain.
Simon Sinek is always worth listening to gain clarity and understanding.
Many wonderful insights in this video.
PRODUCTIVITY SUCCESS TIME MANAGEMENT WORK
BY DEAN VAKSMAN
At the end of the day, you’ve worked long and hard, and you feel like you have completely and utterly depleted all of your daily energy supplies. Today, just like all other days before it, you will make yourself a lazy TV dinner, watch a show for an hour or two – any show, as long as you’re watching something to distract yourself from the frenzy at work.
All sounds awfully grim, doesn’t it? Well, you can rest assured, you are not doomed to repeat such a lazy daily routine: whether you choose to watch TV for two straight hours each day after work, or just go over Facebook or Instagram until you finally fall asleep, you can actually use some of this time to do something productive!
Doing so will improve your career life, as well as your personal time.
The benefits of making good use of your first hour after work:
First things first: If you spare a single hour after work on something that you count as productive, no matter if it’s learning a new language or building a car model, you will feel fulfilled, and therefore, happier. This will make a significant difference at your in work productivity. A happy worker is a good worker, and sooner or later, your boss will surely notice the difference.
Secondly, you can’t entirely count on learning something new, or practice a hobby during actual work time. Not only that you will constantly be distracted, and your personal gain from it will diminish significantly, but this can also result in an opposite effect on your work productivity, and it may even look like you’re slacking. During after-work time, you are your own boss, and you can make your own rules and channel your time in whatever way you please. It’s during this time that you should dedicate an hour to achieving your goal.
Thirdly, one hour each day can make a colossal difference in the long run. For example, in the case that you are studying a new language for one hour every day, after a year, all of those hours will have made for significant practice time, and you might even be close to full fluency by the end of the year. That makes one language every single year!
And lastly, you should always consider the fact that companies might hire, or promote you, based on what you practiced during all of those single hours. If you studied Italian, for example, to the point of near fluency, you could write that on your resume, and it may prove beneficial to you when you encounter a company that is looking for that particular language skill.
What are the problems that may arise from staying idle?Well, therein lies the problem. Staying idle. So what does staying idle mean? Well, a person that has an idle attitude towards life cannot expect their lives to change. This means, no progression, no goals, no brighter future compared to what they have at the present. To some, they may be fine with what they have already. But if you have any goals or aspirations, then you can’t let yourself get sucked into an idle, daily routine.
A second problem that may arise is that building yourself such a strong, steady, lazy kind of routine, may affect you mentally and even push you into depression. While depression is a significant problem by its own, it will also diminish your work productivity and, as a result, deteriorate your working conditions, such as with your boss-employee relations, or your general work status.
The dedication of just one hour after work a day can make all the difference in your world.
Here’s how you can make good use of your time outside of work:
1. Read: Yes, you read it correctly. It can be anything, from fiction to nonfiction, fantasy to biography, and romance to horror. One hour of reading each day can make for one book every week. The more you read, the more you know. Not only that, but reading can be very fulfilling. It will also improve your conversation topics, and may even give you work-related knowledge that can ultimately boost your actual career.
2. Start personal projects: This one is especially beneficial if your workplace did not already provide you with one. Projects, such as building a website, or doing some volunteering work will reward you with refined personal values, such as learning the meaning of teamwork, how to meet deadlines, and how to handle feedback for your work. All are major traits for a successful career.
3. Make connections: It is well known that connections are an undeniable plus when it comes to either career or personal development. All you need to do is just to go out there and meet people! You can even schedule after-work get-togethers with your co-workers.
All of these are just a small sample of what’s in store for you. Think outside the box and follow your passions!
It’s that easy.
How about some support with changing your routine after work?
Get in touch, together we will explore how to change your routine..
by Suzie Doscher
The Dalai Lama made a wonderful comment about anger. He suggested that anger blocks the part of the brain that allows us to distinguish the difference between right and wrong. Reality is lost in moments of anger, therefore making us blind to what is actually going on.
The same can be said about other emotions that have the power to disrupt your daily life. Anger usually manages to creep through most emotions and find its way to the surface. Somewhere inside of the emotions that have the power to overwhelm, upset, and throw your life out of balance you will most probably find some anger, if only a hint.
The Dalai Lama further stated: to deal with our problems we need to be practical and realistic. If we are to be realistic, we need to use our human intelligence properly, meaning we need a calm mind.
When your life feels like it is a mess and you are ready to take some action there are many different approaches to take. (Support from a professional or wise friend, mediation, spiritual beliefs, sometimes even just taking a “time out” holiday can help.) Find the one that suits your personality and lifestyle best. At this point you are hoping to be calmer. This will allow your mind to be more realistic again. You are more likely to stay on track with making the necessary changes with a realistic mind.
These suggestions are one of many approaches you could take that might be helpful:
An excerpt from Suzie Doscher's book: BALANCE - A PRACTICAL HANDBOOK FOR LIFE'S DIFFICULT MOMENTS.
Suzie's NEW book BALANCE - Interactive Workbook for Self-Coaching is now available if you do not have the time or inclination to work with a professional life coach. Get started on your own, in your own time. Narrow down what you want to change with the help of the workbook.
“Challenges in life either do or do not have solutions.
If there is a solution somewhere,
Then there is no need to be overwhelmed by the challenge.
If there genuinely is no solution,
Then there is no point being overwhelmed by it”.
If you genuinely believe there is a solution to every problem there is a greater likelihood that you will find the solution. Personally, I believe the approach “where there is a will, there is a way.” I do not always find the way as soon as I had hoped for – which can sometimes be due to a lack of motivation. I then remind myself that I know nothing stays the same and therefore have nothing to fear. Things will change even if I do nothing. Obviously, I might not get the outcome I had hoped for but then again if I chose not to get myself motivated then that was my choice! When I find myself lacking motivation I either find someone to talk to or brainstorm with me, or I take any time pressure off myself and see what comes up on its own.
Timing is important
Sometimes it is not the right time to deal with an issue, solve a work related problem, make a change or whatever the challenge is you might be facing. This does not mean you have given up on finding the solution. To me this means I am not in the right frame of mind, nor am I in a strong emotional place or have enough time, to focus on resolving whatever requires attention.
Believe you can
Really believing that you can find a solution to every problem gives you an advantage. This advantage is strength and personal power. You are more likely to overcome nearly all, if not all, the problems you are faced with. Sometimes the best solution is to walk away from something.
One step at a time
If an issue overwhelms me I break it down into smaller issues I can cope with. (This comes after I cried!) I remember having to read through a rather large contract one day. The only way I could cope with it was to give myself permission to only have to read five pages in the morning and five pages in the afternoon. So, my solution was to break the reading down into smaller steps.
If you are fully convinced that a solution exists for every problem, then problems no longer feel like problems, instead they become tasks to deal with. Your thinking makes a world of difference to what you achieve.
By Suzie Doscher - Professional Senior Coach
When working with my younger clients I often think 'Wow, if only I had been that emotionally strong, focused and motivated when I was that age'.......
I admire young people who have the courage to 'look in the mirror' and then reach out for coaching support to make changes and grow.
Having said that I am more than happy to experienced all I did in my 30's, positive and negative. I made plenty of the 'mistakes' , took 'wrong' turns as well as (and most importantly) had lots fun doing crazy adventurous things, traveling, moving countries. I was very very social and in retrospect feel lucky to have experienced life before the mobile phone and computer!
I was never a negative thinker but I certainly could have been a bit more focused, driven and less fearful when attempting to get creative projects off the ground.
I would say I simply did not believe in myself enough at the time to really follow through. The self-esteem was missing although I was regarded as a person with a lot of confidence.
Interesting combination - outwardly appear very confident while experiencing low self-esteem.
I am a huge believer that life's pitfalls are great opportunities to learn from. With this attitude you grow stronger, learn how to make different choices, stand up quicker when you fall down and above all 'keep moving right along'.
I am delighted at age 60 to have 'taken the bull by the horns' (in my 40's) and together with the support of initially a psychoanalyst, followed by hypnotherapist and on to more spiritual practices and life coaching made all the internal & behavioural changes to 'grow into my skin' - be myself. I can now happily say "I will not look back thinking 'if only I had". Make sure you can say the same.
11 Things You Will Regret in your 30's
April 11, 2016 by EMILY CO, Popsugar Author
What better way to learn than from those who have been there and done that? A Reddit thread recently had people chiming in on things they regret doing (or not doing) in their 30s. Whether you are about to embark on the exciting journey of your 30s or nearing the tail end, learn from those in the know.
Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / THEM TOO
by Suzie Doscher
"Change is Inevitable, Progress Optional" - Tony Robbins
Change is not easy or simple. If you have been told you should change but are not really convinced this is true, you are more likely to fail at completing the process. You stand a better chance if want, and are motivated, to change something. This could be a behaviour pattern, how you react, a communication style or how you view the world to name a few examples.
Change can only really take place if you are ready to take action.
Research shows 90% of the strategies designed for change assume people are ready to take action. In reality only 20% of the people already involved in some process of change are actually ready to take action. This helps explain why so many attempts to keep New Year's resolutions, lose weight, change behaviour, etc. are doomed to failure.
The most successful way to approach changing a behaviour pattern is to:
"Change is Inevitable, Progress Optional" - Tony Robbins
Article from The Spirit Science, January 26, 2016
It’s hard to live your life in a confident way. We face nearly constant pressures from society to conform to certain expectations that you may not agree with. Society tends to put us down when we don’t fit the bill as a model citizen; pretty, successful, rich. As a result, our self-esteem is always taking a beating. How can we improve our self esteem?
Making mistakes is the easy part. More importantly, accept your mistakes as things which grow you as a person. Don’t let your mistakes cripple your spirit, and definitely don’t allow your mistakes to become ammunition for someone trying to bring you down. Accept them, learn from them, and move on.
I was once told that the way the message was delivered doesn’t matter, but the contents of the message do. Accept criticism, whether it’s intended to be constructive or hurtful. Don’t take anything personally. Use what others have to say to better yourself. If what they’re telling you is simply a personal attack, disregard and move on.
Don’t speak badly of yourself.
If you’re paid a compliment, accept it! Don’t try to talk yourself out of enjoying a little bit of praise. Tell yourself positive affirmations. You are good enough. You look fine the way you are. There’s nothing wrong with you. Any improvement should happen because you really want to be better, not because you don’t think you’re good enough.
Hold your head high.
Truly confident people don’t stare at the ground as they walk. It may seem silly, but your posture is important. When you hold your head high, you signal to yourself and the world that you aren’t afraid, that you can handle anything, and you have high self-esteem.
Don’t accept abuse.
Abuse is one of the biggest causes of poor self-esteem. Many times, when people are treated poorly, they find themselves believing they deserve it. I’m going to tell you a truth that cannot be debated:
No one deserves abuse of any kind.No, you didn’t do anything to deserve it. Yes, you can walk away from toxic relationships at any time.
Some things in life are worth proceeding with caution on, like going into debt buying a home or switching careers. But don’t let negative self-talk keep you from taking risks and achieving the big goals in life that you want. You’re smart enough to handle it.
Be the best you that you can be.
At the core of it all, to best lift your self-esteem, allow yourself to be the best you that you can be. Only you know how to be you, so proceed through each day with your head held high knowing that you are exactly who you want to be. And if you want to improve, do it for the right reasons.
by Suzie Doscher
First of all, you are reading this article which shows that on some level there is a curiosity. You might be interested in the topic, or maybe have a colleague or friend who is working on personal development with a coach already. Maybe you are increasingly aware of an issue or behaviour pattern you are willing to change which is activating your curiosity.
One way or another here are some thoughts to consider:
If you are:
The next steps:
It is important to know the difference between all the various approaches to change, see my article Coaching vs. Trainings / Consulting / Mentoring / Traditional Therapies for more information.
FIND A COACH THAT WORKS FOR YOU.
Excerpts from an article BY CLAIRE TRISTRAM
Finding the coach that's best for you is easier said than done. "Unemployed executives used to say they were 'consultants,'" complains James Flaherty, a 12-year veteran of the executive coaching business. "Now they say they're 'coaches.' The coaching business isn't regulated by anyone, and that's hurting us."
When it comes time to interviewing prospective coaches, here are five questions to ask yourself — questions that will take you beyond the obvious:
1. Is this person really a coach, or just a consultant in disguise?
"Consultants give you answers. Coaches ask you questions," "Hiring a coach is not like hiring a lawyer. It's not about getting an expert. If your coach claims a level of expertise that you can never attain, that's a big red flag."
2. Does the coach have a strict code of ethics?
To get the best results, you'll need to be completely honest with your coach. Look for a coach who insists on total confidentiality, as unbreachable as the attorney-client privilege.
3. What will this coach actually do for me?
To get specific results, be specific about what you need. "Say to your prospective coach, 'Here's what I want to do. What do you know about it, and how can you help me?'" Try to establish a level of detail where you know exactly what will happen if you work together.
4. Does the proposed program match my needs?
A coach's game plan must be consistent with your real life, says Flaherty. If you've been asked to make an unreasonable time commitment, or to change your lifestyle in ways that don't feel doable, look for another coach. Thomas Leonard, for example, trains coaches to operate almost exclusively by email or over the telephone, in deference to managers' busy schedules.
5. Is the financial picture clear?
"What's your fee?" shouldn't be your first question, and it shouldn't be your last. "Make sure you understand exactly what it is you're paying for."
A version of this article appeared in the October/November 96 issue of Fast Company _magazine.
A Practical Handbook