Monthly Archive: January 2020

Worse or better?

 

I was reminded a few days ago of how we can set ourselves up for making things worse instead of better.  It was a good friend of mine who reminded me: she was upset with a mutual friend, and didn’t know how to let our friend know how upset she was. She “solved” this problem, at least temporarily, by getting a migraine, so that she couldn’t talk this issue over with our friend.

She’d made things worse for herself, instead of better: now she had a debilitating migraine and the necessary conversation was waiting for her to worry about for a while longer.

If you’ve never done this, you’re rare. Most of us find a way to sabotage ourselves, usually subconsciously or unconsciously. If something scares us enough, some of us would rather go through an elective operation than deal with that something.

If you do find yourself going to ridiculous extremes instead of facing something scary here’s three things you can do to help you through it in a better way:

Ground yourself. When I’m anxious, most of my energy is in my chest, somewhere near my throat. When I’m grounded, it’s closer to my belly button; I feel anchored to the ground beneath me. For me, I have come to know what that feels like. I call it “being landed”. Take some time when you’re in a calm space and learn what being grounded feels like for you. Then do whatever it takes to get there when you need to. Meditation, deep breathing, a long walk … whatever works for you. Being anywhere else when you need to do something scary means you’re more likely to screw up. You increase your chance of success when you approach anything difficult from a grounded place.

Get honest. Astonishingly easily, I can fool myself into thinking I am being open and above-board when I’m really not. Especially when I feel hurt. Before addressing a sensitive issue, especially with a friend, make sure you are clear about your part, and don’t begin the talk with any judgments or accusations. Be clear about the issue rather than your opinions.  For instance, if I find myself wanting to point an accusing finger at someone, I know I’m being dishonest with myself, and that, for me, holding off until I no longer feel the need to do this, is the better way.

Open your heart. We are human – you are, I am, everyone is. And as such, we are capable of making mistakes and hurting others.  Going into a confrontation with a generous heart can make the difference between increasing a problem or resolving it. This isn’t the same as being naive, or of shuttering your awareness, or of adopting a “Polyanna” overly objective attitude. I’m guilty of doing that – not wanting to believe that someone I think well of is deliberately being a nuisance – so much easier to find fault in myself. You don’t have to do this to enter a confrontation with an open heart, if you’re grounded, and honest with yourself.

Worse or better? It’s sometimes really hard to go for better. In the end, it’s always worth it.

 

Announcements 

If you like this blog, you’ll also like my newsletters. It’s written only for my insiders who sign up, and provides weekly insights, not only from me, but from others I admire.

To sign up  for my insider newsletter, click here. If you find it doesn’t work for you, all you have to do to unsubscribe is click on the link at the bottom of the newsletter.

Looking forward to welcoming you to my growing list of insiders!

Maryanne

 

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co 

Right now is …

 

Life is the moment we’re living right now. (Paulo Coelho)

I spend a lot of time thinking about the next thing I’m going to do. Every morning, once I have my coffee in hand, I look at my to do list for the day. Half an hour later, I’ve envisioned everything on that list, as if each thing had already happened. I remember a few days ago telling Andy (my husband) what my plans were, and it seemed, by 9am, that it was already 8pm. That I’d already lived the whole day in the first hour.

No wonder time flies for me! What would happen if I truly lived in this moment? Right now.

 

Want to be happier? Stay in the moment

 

 

Quote of the Week

“The Expulsion from Paradise is eternal in its principal aspect: this makes it irrevocable, and our living in this world inevitable, but the eternal nature of the process has the effect that not only could we remain forever in Paradise, but that we are currently there, whether we know it or not.”

― Franz Kafka, The Zürau Aphorisms

Announcements 

Need more? At times we need more  – we know the logic, know what to do. And yet something is still blocking us.  I offer both one-on-one consultations and coaching packages.  For more information, visit my website www.thejoyofliving.co/services-and-programs or contact me directly at maryanne@thejoyofliving.co .

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist and Life Coach.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co.

Right now is …

 

Life is the moment we’re living right now. (Paulo Coelho)

I spend a lot of time thinking about the next thing I’m going to do. Every morning, once I have my coffee in hand, I look at my to do list for the day. Half an hour later, I’ve envisioned everything on that list, as if each thing had already happened. I remember a few days ago telling Andy (my husband) what my plans were, and it seemed, by 9am, that it was already 8pm. That I’d already lived the whole day in the first hour.

No wonder time flies for me! What would happen if I truly lived in this moment? Right now.

 

Announcements 

If you like this blog, you’ll also like my newsletters. It’s written only for my insiders who sign up, and provides weekly insights, not only from me, but from others I admire.

To sign up  for my insider newsletter, click here. If you find it doesn’t work for you, all you have to do to unsubscribe is click on the link at the bottom of the newsletter.

Looking forward to welcoming you to my growing list of insiders!

Maryanne

 

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co 

Home is …

For years, home for me was in my books.  I have hundreds of them … my mysteries and sci-fi for pleasant and relaxing escapes, philosophy for the years I studied it and grew into another person, then psychology – that “practical philosophy” that I moved into and that is now my vocation, the spiritual books and books written by inspirational men and women (mostly women), books on mathematics and economics, practical how-to books, art books, yoga books … classics, poetry … . some books are falling apart from use, some nearly new.  All have been read and cherished.

From my 20’s onward, my book moved with me, no matter how cumbersome. I’ve sold some for almost nothing when I needed money, then bought them back for 10 times as much when I could. Books served as insulation in some of the small rooms I inhabited, lining the walls with their warmth and welcome.

Every lost book was a personal loss to me, like the loss of a friend. The time I felt the need to downsize and give away a third of my books was really difficult; I tried to find good homes for each one, as I would a cherished pet who needed a different place to thrive and grow.

Then about 6 months ago, I suddenly felt a need for space and room. For the first time, my books felt like they were limiting me, enclosing me, suffocating and isolating me.

Within a week of realizing this, I packed them up and put them all in storage!

And now? Now, I have twice the space I once had, for welcoming friends – human friends – into.

My long-term plan is to find a bigger place to live where I can happily co-exist with my books and  friends in collaborative peace. Meantime, home, to me, has become my cherished relationships, and my work.

What is home to you?

Where is home?

 

Quote of the Week 

Books are the plane, and the train, and the road. They are the destination, and the journey. They are home.” ― Anna Quindlen

Announcements 

Need more? At times we need more  – we know the logic, know what to do. And yet something is still blocking us.  I offer both one-on-one consultations and coaching packages.  For more information, visit my website www.thejoyofliving.co/services-and-programs or contact me directly at maryanne@thejoyofliving.co .

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist and Life Coach.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co.

Home is …

 

For years, home for me was in my books.  I have hundreds of them … my mysteries and sci-fi for pleasant and relaxing escapes, philosophy for the years I studied it and grew into another person, then psychology – that “practical philosophy” that I moved into and that is now my vocation, the spiritual books and books written by inspirational men and women (mostly women), books on mathematics and economics, practical how-to books, art books, yoga books … classics, poetry … . some books are falling apart from use, some nearly new.  All have been read and cherished.

From my 20’s onward, my book moved with me, no matter how cumbersome. I’ve sold some for almost nothing when I needed money, then bought them back for 10 times as much when I could. Books served as insulation in some of the small rooms I inhabited, lining the walls with their warmth and welcome.

Every lost book was a personal loss to me, like the loss of a friend. The time I felt the need to downsize and give away a third of my books was really difficult; I tried to find good homes for each one, as I would a cherished pet who needed a different place to thrive and grow.

Then about 6 months ago, I suddenly felt a need for space and room. For the first time, my books felt like they were limiting me, enclosing me, suffocating and isolating me.

Within a week of realizing this, I packed them up and put them all in storage!

And now? Now, I have twice the space I once had, for welcoming friends – human friends – into.

My long-term plan is to find a bigger place to live where I can happily co-exist with my books and  friends in collaborative peace. Meantime, home, to me, has become my cherished relationships, and my work.

What is home to you?

 

Announcements 

If you like this blog, you’ll also like my newsletters. It’s written only for my insiders who sign up, and provides weekly insights, not only from me, but from others I admire.

To sign up  for my insider newsletter, click here. If you find it doesn’t work for you, all you have to do to unsubscribe is click on the link at the bottom of the newsletter.

Looking forward to welcoming you to my growing list of insiders!

Maryanne

 

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co 

How to manipulate successfully

 

Yes, this is a somewhat tongue-in-cheek blog today. It struck me a while back that all the things some modern coaches tell us to do can be used to fool people into thinking you’re someone you’re not.  Coaching on how to win friends and influence people. Wait, isn’t that what Dale Carnegie – grand master of manipulation – taught?

The “solid” handshake, looking people straight in the eye, knowing beforehand what your audience wants and then talking to that, whether you personally believe it or not.  Standing with feet slightly apart and hands by your sides. Smiling, projecting your voice, doing something to generate energy inside you so that you exude energy and vibrancy on the outside (Tony Robins runs for at least 5 minutes before any talk to do just that).

I’m not saying that Tony Robins is a manipulator, or anyone using these techniques. What I am saying is that if those actions aren’t natural to you, then you aren’t being genuine, and while they might work on some, they won’t work on everyone. Eventually, that chicken will come home to roost; every action costs something, and the cost of not being genuine may end up being an expensive one.

A better way is to be real. Some people won’t like it, and that’s OK. Those people aren’t your people anyway. The cost of being genuine is peace of mind, and feeling great achieving whatever it is you achieved doing so.

I once gave a talk at a university and about 10 seconds before I began, I had a severe dizzy episode. It was all I could do to stay upright, and my speech showed it. Needless to say, I was never asked back and I learnt that letting everyone know what was happening might have been a better idea. More genuine.  I’ve given a lot of speeches since then, and having already experienced the worst possible scenario gives me a sense of ease that helps me be genuine. I don’t think you need to experience what I did to get there.

How Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google manipulate our emotions (by the way, I like Ayn Rand)

 

 

Quote of the Week 

One of the methods of manipulation is to inoculate individuals with the bourgeois appetite for personal success.”  ― Paulo Freire

Announcements 

If you like this blog, you’ll also like my newsletters. It’s written only for my insiders who sign up, and provides weekly insights, not only from me, but from others I admire.

To sign up  for my insider newsletter, click here. If you find it doesn’t work for you, all you have to do to unsubscribe is click on the link at the bottom of the newsletter.

Looking forward to welcoming you to my growing list of insiders!

Maryanne

 

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co 

 

How to manipulate successfully

 

Yes, this is a somewhat tongue-in-cheek blog today. It struck me a while back that all the things some modern coaches tell us to do can be used to fool people into thinking you’re someone you’re not.  Coaching on how to win friends and influence people. Wait, isn’t that what Dale Carnegie – grand master of manipulation – taught?

The “solid” handshake, looking people straight in the eye, knowing beforehand what your audience wants and then talking to that, whether you personally believe it or not.  Standing with feet slightly apart and hands by your sides. Smiling, projecting your voice, doing something to generate energy inside you so that you exude energy and vibrancy on the outside (Tony Robins runs for at least 5 minutes before any talk to do just that).

I’m not saying that Tony Robins is a manipulator, or anyone using these techniques. What I am saying is that if those actions aren’t natural to you, then you aren’t being genuine, and while they might work on some, they won’t work on everyone. Eventually, that chicken will come home to roost; every action costs something, and the cost of not being genuine may end up being an expensive one.

A better way is to be real. Some people won’t like it, and that’s OK. Those people aren’t your people anyway. The cost of being genuine is peace of mind, and feeling great achieving whatever it is you achieved doing so.

I once gave a talk at a university and about 10 seconds before I began, I had a severe dizzy episode. It was all I could do to stay upright, and my speech showed it. Needless to say, I was never asked back and I learnt that letting everyone know what was happening might have been a better idea. More genuine.  I’ve given a lot of speeches since then, and having already experienced the worst possible scenario gives me a sense of ease that helps me be genuine. I don’t think you need to experience what I did to get there.

 

Announcements 

If you like this blog, you’ll also like my newsletters. It’s written only for my insiders who sign up, and provides weekly insights, not only from me, but from others I admire.

To sign up  for my insider newsletter, click here. If you find it doesn’t work for you, all you have to do to unsubscribe is click on the link at the bottom of the newsletter.

Looking forward to welcoming you to my growing list of insiders!

Maryanne

 

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co 

 

Change for 2020

 

In this new year of 2020, there is a tradition among some of reviewing their past year in order to see what they might do to make the new year better.  What we did, what happened as a result, what was going on for us to make what happened happen; our dreams, how they came to fruition … or not, and the dream we have for this current year.

New Year’s resolutions can be past or future focused – how we want to correct what happened, or change what happened, or go in a new and hopefully better direction this year. I hear all the time about New Years’ resolutions that are doomed to fail – which is a good thing, because they are really instruments of self-flagellation: crash diets, working out till you drop, piling on the meant-to-feel-better-about-ourselves to-do items, that eventually get dropped because they are, in fact, impossible. Besides, I really don’t believe that any kind of self-imposed punishment ever results in something good, and never feels motivating enough to follow through on (in my personal experience).

But there is one New Years’ resolution that might work, and that is to commit to changing our story. This will probably involve spending time on looking at your story of 2019, but doing so with compassion for the person you had to be to be in that story. Then deciding what to let go of so that your 2020 story can be one of more beauty and joy.

It doesn’t have to be perfect, just better than last year’s. Changing something can happen in big leaps, but is more likely to really happen in small steps. (For those of you who get the newsletter version of this blog, watch the video to get a few really good ways of making those changes.)

Wishing you a joyful and hopeful 2020.

How to change your behavior for the better

 

 

Quote of the Week 

The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.”  ― Albert Einstein

Announcements 

Need more? At times we need more  – we know the logic, know what to do. And yet something is still blocking us.  I offer both one-on-one consultations and coaching packages.  For more information, visit my website www.thejoyofliving.co/services-and-programs or contact me directly at maryanne@thejoyofliving.co . Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist and Life Coach.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co .

 

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co .

Change for 2020

 

In this new year of 2020, there is a tradition among some of reviewing their past year in order to see what they might do to make the new year better.  What we did, what happened as a result, what was going on for us to make what happened happen; our dreams, how they came to fruition … or not, and the dream we have for this current year.

New Year’s resolutions can be past or future focused – how we want to correct what happened, or change what happened, or go in a new and hopefully better direction this year. I hear all the time about New Years’ resolutions that are doomed to fail – which is a good thing, because they are really instruments of self-flagellation: crash diets, working out till you drop, piling on the meant-to-feel-better-about-ourselves to-do items, that eventually get dropped because they are, in fact, impossible. Besides, I really don’t believe that any kind of self-imposed punishment ever results in something good, and never feels motivating enough to follow through on (in my personal experience).

But there is one New Years’ resolution that might work, and that is to commit to changing our story. This will probably involve spending time on looking at your story of 2019, but doing so with compassion for the person you had to be to be in that story. Then deciding what to let go of so that your 2020 story can be one of more beauty and joy.

It doesn’t have to be perfect, just better than last year’s. Changing something can happen in big leaps, but is more likely to really happen in small steps. (For those of you who get the newsletter version of this blog, watch the video to get a few really good ways of making those changes.)

Wishing you a joyful and hopeful 2020.

 

Announcements 

If you like this blog, you’ll also like my newsletters. It’s written only for my insiders who sign up, and provides weekly insights, not only from me, but from others I admire.

To sign up  for my insider newsletter, click here. If you find it doesn’t work for you, all you have to do to unsubscribe is click on the link at the bottom of the newsletter.

Looking forward to welcoming you to my growing list of insiders!

Maryanne

 

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co