Your brain is a meaning-making machine. At all times, your imagination and creativity are actively creating scenarios and potential outcomes in your head. How you experience your world is mostly a creation of your perspective and beliefs.
While situations create emotions, our thoughts and beliefs about a problem often run the show. I previously shared the cybernetic loop in a blog post about how stress and anxiety block decision-making.
Practical creativity recognises your mind’s role in how you experience your world: what do you want to create?
You can awfulise and catastrophe: allowing your inner critic to judge and tell you all that is wrong with you. Your anxiety and stress limits can be pushed by imagining the worst-case scenario. Your relationships can be strained by thinking the worst.
You might go the other way and dissociate into fantasy, creating in your mind an idyllic scenario where everything is perfect. Do nothing. And nothing changes.
Or you stay present and look at yourself and others through the eyes of compassion, practising the self-awareness of emotional intelligence and creating opportunities to change the situation and your relationships for the better. Continue reading Practical creativity: how you create and experience your world
With so much talk about living authentically, we seem to have forgotten the origin of the word “authentic”. Etymologically, it derives from “one acting on one’s authority” – from the reflexive “auto” – self, one’s own, by oneself, of oneself. If authentic, you author your life, acting on your authority.
On the other hand, most of us get stuck trying to find our way back to “our authentic self” – as if there were some original, static version of self that we could find and refer to.
If only I were true to that version of me, I would be authentic!
Continue reading Author your life: make choices for authentic relationships
I grew up in the eighties and nineties when “girls can do anything” was our everyday motto. This strong drive for independent women had shaped so many facets of my life that I failed to notice when I crossed the line from an independent woman into hyper-independence.
I struggle to ask for help.
Worse yet, I fail to accept support and connection from others and then will be the first to complain, “why do I have to do everything myself?”.
Hyper-independence is not a virtue. It may look like one of my strengths, but it is my Achilles heel. Continue reading Hyper-independence makes you miserable: ask for better support
A new book club group kicks off in early July. We will be reading Colin Tipping’s “Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships – Let Go of Anger & Blame – Find Peace in Any Situation”.
What to expect in our book club:
As the book has 30 chapters, we will be meeting over ten weeks and discussing three chapters each week. You should read in advance and come ready for the discussion. Join us for the meeting if you still get behind in the reading.
Skim reading is also an option when you’re running late! Continue reading Radical Forgiveness bookclub: how to do the inner healing
Great relationships, connections and networking are built on the foundation of emotional intelligence. It’s not enough to pretend to control your feelings, but rather to be fully in touch with your emotions and use them resourcefully.
Although you might have heard of emotional intelligence as if it were a single skill, several different skills and practices come together that allow you to stay in touch with your emotions and those around you.
Typically, there are four key areas to emotional intelligence: self-management, self-awareness, social awareness, and relationship management. The nine skills in self-awareness that I will share with you overlap with all four of these areas.
It takes an extraordinary self-awareness to use your emotions effectively to create a better life and stronger relationships. Continue reading Emotional intelligence: 9 ways to build your self-awareness