The other day, my partner and I were talking about when our (now 17-year-old) child was a baby. We were talking about how scared we both were. How unprepared. How completely out of our depth we felt. And it was the first time either one of us had heard that from the other. You see, we were young, and scared, and both of us were valiantly trying to hold it together for the other. But that only got us so far. We both ended up feeling awfully alone. horribly unsupported, and very isolated that first year. And although part of that was because of a lack of a good support system, part of that was because we were scared to lean in.
You would think that given that our bodies are the external, tangible, physical parts of us, that we would all know our bodies super well. However, as someone who experienced extensive medical trauma as a child, lived with chronic pain and fatigue issues for most of my life, and grew up in a religious community that devalued the body, I realized a few years ago that I didn't really know, listen to, understand or respond to my body ... at all! But why does that matter?
When I tell people that I'm a life coach, lots of people seem a bit confused about what that means. They're not quite sure what category to put me in, or how what I have to offer might help. So I thought I might offer a bit of a clarification! First of all, life coaches come in all different shapes and sizes, with all different types of specialties and all different types of training. Many work especially with executives or small business owners, helping them to run their companies (and lives) more efficiently so that they can be more successful. That's not really my thing, but I have friends who do a great job at this work - feel free to contact me for their details. Some of them work in the not-for-profit setting, helping individuals and organizations maximize their potential impact, and be more effective at vision-setting and vision-casting. While I've got a fair amount of experience in the not-for-profit setting, that's not really my main thing, either, but again, I'd be happy to put you in touch with folks who are doing this work. While it's not a very common niche, I am convinced that the principles of life coaching - asking compassionately curious questions to help a person uncover what they already know to be true - can be incredibly effective when applied to our relationships with ourselves and the people we love the most.
One of the most simple tools for understanding the brain is Dr. Siegel's "Brain Hand": According to Siegel, the pre-frontal cortex is the part of our brain that is capable of being rational - of helping us think through problems, reflect on previous actions and make new decisions. Awareness of the world around us -… Continue reading Getting to Know Your … Mind (Part 2)
When I think of my mind, I usually think of my thoughts bouncing around, competing for attention, and disappearing just when I need them! I think of all of the academic work I have done over the years, all of the experiential learning I've done, all of the memories I hold of people and events… Continue reading Getting to Know Your … Mind (Part 1)
So last week I introduced the idea that we are a made up of four parts - our heart, soul, mind and body - and that to operate as our best, most authentic self, we need to be able to function equally between these different elements of ourself. So today we're going to move onto 'Soul',… Continue reading Getting to Know Your … Soul
Go and love someone exactly as they are. And then watch how quickly they transform into the greatest, truest version of themselves. When one feels seen and appreciated in their own essence, one is instantly empowered. ~ Wes Angelozzi I was struck by the above quote this week as another round of religious berating of… Continue reading Exactly As You Are