Archive: Balance

The real meaning of “Impromptu”

Impromptu

Mark Twain was the inspiration for this blog when I happened upon his quote: “It usually takes me more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.”

Exactly! He does have a way with words.

When I read this, I decided to make my next Toastmasters speech about it – for all of my colleagues who believe they lack in some way because they don’t have the “impromptu” part figured out yet.

To prepare for this speech I did some research, and came across an excellent article written by Chris Anderson, curator of TED, about how TED support their speakers.  They don’t choose their speakers based on whether they can come up with a speech on the spot. They choose their speakers based on three things:  the original idea, the story, and the speaker’s passion for their idea.

TED gives a speaker 6 months to prepare a speech, which must be completed a month ahead of time.  A speaker must memorize their speech, completely, before giving it: no scripts or teleprompters allowed.  Mr. Anderson believes that reading from a script or teleprompter disappoints and disengages the audience. Memorizing all of it is the only way.

Not impromptu.

What is impromptu is the idea, and the speaker’s passion. The rest is practice, practice, practice.

Chris Anderson’s Secret to a great talk

 

 

Quote of the Week

I’m just preparing my impromptu remarks.
– Winston Churchill

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.

 

The real meaning of “Impromptu”

Impromptu

Mark Twain was the inspiration for this blog when I happened upon his quote: “It usually takes me more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.”

Exactly! He does have a way with words.

When I read this, I decided to make my next Toastmasters speech about it – for all of my colleagues who believe they lack in some way because they don’t have the “impromptu” part figured out yet.

To prepare for this speech I did some research, and came across an excellent article written by Chris Anderson, curator of TED, about how TED support their speakers.  They don’t choose their speakers based on whether they can come up with a speech on the spot. They choose their speakers based on three things:  the original idea, the story, and the speaker’s passion for their idea.

TED gives a speaker 6 months to prepare a speech, which must be completed a month ahead of time.  A speaker must memorize their speech, completely, before giving it: no scripts or teleprompters allowed.  Mr. Anderson believes that reading from a script or teleprompter disappoints and disengages the audience. Memorizing all of it is the only way.

Not impromptu.

What is impromptu is the idea, and the speaker’s passion. The rest is practice, practice, practice.

 

Announcements

If you like this blog, you’ll also like my newsletters [link to latest newsletter that’s published in website ] for an sample]. 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 .

 

Why am I late!

late

I’m worried – that I’ve missed something. What is it? Let’s recheck everything before I go … and why don’t I take extra paper and pens … and how about snacks – healthy snacks … does that mean a trip to the store?  Yes!  OK … I’ll do that …

I don’t know if I should go … if it’s right for me to be there.  Well I committed, but I’d feel better if I finished that paper I’ve been working on first … and how about that mending I’ve been ignoring …

It’s my head that makes me late. Every time! Being used by me to avoid something I already know: that I’m anxious about doing something, or that I really should have said No but said Yes instead.

Once I acknowledge that thing I already know, I’m fine. I drop the chatter and get going.

Why are you late? What do you already know?

Try something new for 30 days

 

 

Quote of the Week

I have noticed that the people who are late are often so much jollier than the people who have to wait for them.”  ― E. V. Lucas

 

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.

Why am I late!

late

I’m worried – that I’ve missed something. What is it? Let’s recheck everything before I go … and why don’t I take extra paper and pens … and how about snacks – healthy snacks … does that mean a trip to the store?  Yes!  OK … I’ll do that …

I don’t know if I should go … if it’s right for me to be there.  Well I committed, but I’d feel better if I finished that paper I’ve been working on first … and how about that mending I’ve been ignoring …

It’s my head that makes me late. Every time! Being used by me to avoid something I already know: that I’m anxious about doing something, or that I really should have said No but said Yes instead.

Once I acknowledge that thing I already know, I’m fine. I drop the chatter and get going.

Why are you late? What do you already know?

 

Announcements

If you like this blog, you’ll also like my newsletters [link to latest newsletter that’s published in website ] for an sample]. 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 .

Karma

Darlene recently made a decision that might upend her life in ways she never wanted. She did want, with all her heart, to be successful in her profession. To that end, she did something scary and invested heavily in a program that promised to help her achieve her dream. The scary part was that it was a big risk for her: she was close to retirement age and this money was earmarked for just that.  She knew that if this didn’t work, she’d be in trouble.

Before she made her move, did Darlene do her homework and base her decisions on what she really knew about herself? Or did she blindly jump in, trusting in others instead of herself? If she blindly jumped in, then she’s just increased her own karma.

Karma is the sum of our actions in this lifetime that will determine our next lifetime. This means if we’re considerate in our actions, that sum is lower; if not, it’s higher.

Even if it ends up being a mistake – what Darlene did – if she chose with care and consideration, whatever happens won’t be as gloomy as it would have been had it been a thoughtless move.  She need not recriminate herself – it was a risk. She loses no self-esteem, and can as a result bounce back much easier.

I’ve noticed in my practice and in my own life, that people can make themselves miserable if they let other people run their lives. For instance, if I react to a comment from a friend that feels hurtful, that “friend” is momentarily running my life – and I’ve just added to my karma. If I make any decision based on what I think others in my life want instead of what I want, I’m building karma.

It’s the source of human suffering – this build-up of karma. The best way I know to begin to reduce that suffering is to empower myself by clearing out judgments and comparisons, and living life on my own terms.

What is Karma? How Do You Break the Karmic Trap – Sadhguru

His Holiness the Karmapa – The Technology of the Heart

Quote of the Week

How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.”
― Wayne Dyer

Announcement

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.

Karma

Darlene recently made a decision that might upend her life in ways she never wanted. She did want, with all her heart, to be successful in her profession. To that end, she did something scary and invested heavily in a program that promised to help her achieve her dream. The scary part was that it was a big risk for her: she was close to retirement age and this money was earmarked for just that.  She knew that if this didn’t work, she’d be in trouble.

Before she made her move, did Darlene do her homework and base her decisions on what she really knew about herself? Or did she blindly jump in, trusting in others instead of herself? If she blindly jumped in, then she’s just increased her own karma.

Karma is the sum of our actions in this lifetime that will determine our next lifetime. This means if we’re considerate in our actions, that sum is lower; if not, it’s higher.

Even if it ends up being a mistake – what Darlene did – if she chose with care and consideration, whatever happens won’t be as gloomy as it would have been had it been a thoughtless move.  She need not recriminate herself – it was a risk. She loses no self-esteem, and can as a result bounce back much easier.

I’ve noticed in my practice and in my own life, that people can make themselves miserable if they let other people run their lives. For instance, if I react to a comment from a friend that feels hurtful, that “friend” is momentarily running my life – and I’ve just added to my karma. If I make any decision based on what I think others in my life want instead of what I want, I’m building karma.

It’s the source of human suffering – this build-up of karma. The best way I know to begin to reduce that suffering is to empower myself by clearing out judgments and comparisons, and living life on my own terms.

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 .

 

Daredevil!

Many years ago, I dated someone who loved taking high risks; his name was Tom. Tom raced cars that used Nitro for gas; he got a thrill out of swinging in high wind 300 feet in the air; he would walk into dangerous or toxic environments with little thought for his own safety.  Tom did it because it was exciting. I admired him for his lack of fear – still do – and I would never want to do what he did.

But, I have done things that were exciting, thrilling, and dangerous: I’ve driven at speeds I shouldn’t because I’d crammed too much into the day; I’ve spent the entire night working on a project because I loved the thrill of doing something new, while completely ignoring what that was doing to my health. Doing those things some of the time are probably fine; doing them as a rule aren’t fine, and I did them as a rule.

I wasn’t so different from Tom after all!

Many of us confuse excitement with joy; happiness with fulfillment. Our jobs can be exciting – every day something new.  But that doesn’t mean we are fulfilled or feel joy from them. If we don’t feel safe in our jobs, then we won’t feel joy either.

What does it mean – to feel safe in our jobs?

For Tom, it might be confidence in the structures he was hanging from. For me, it’s feeling appreciated and valued. If I don’t feel those from my fellow workers, I won’t stay.

Tom was a Daredevil. So am I – in a different way. I will walk out of a business, a job, a calling, if I don’t feel valued and respected. I won’t do it impulsively but I do know what matters to me. And that’s all that matters.

What matters to you? What are you willing to do for what matters?

If you know and are willing, then you know what it is to be a Daredevil.

 

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 .

Pay me now or pay me later

A few years back, I owned a house I loved. It was old Victorian that I had restored to its natural beauty. I’d sunk everything I had into that house, being as careful as I could. And yet, in the end, I was forced to sell it because I let what turned out to be a scammer talk me into doing some major work for me.

I was wooed – partly – by his competitive rates. Also by an engineer who I thought was truthful, and who recommended him. Both turned out to be untrue. Someone reading this might think I didn’t do the thing we’re all told to do: get a number of estimates and references.  I did all of that. What I didn’t do was listen to my gut, which was screaming at me big time.

So I lost my beautiful house, thankfully to a young couple who loved it and weren’t planning on gutting it.

I may have saved a little up front, but paid much more in the end. Because I ignored my gut.

Attending to what you really know deep inside is tricky – is what I’m feeling some fear that isn’t real or even useful (an emotional reaction), or is it my inner knowing that this isn’t right? There is a way to find out.

  • Find the feeling. Do a scan of your body to see what sensations are coming up for you. A sick feeling in your stomach? A quivering and tightness in your chest? A tension between your shoulder blades? Whatever it is, identify it in visceral terms. For me, it was a sense of nausea and a desire to move back out of harm’s way.
  • Compare it. To a time you felt fear and knew it. When you were safely behind glass on the 50th floor of a tower, looking down. Or up in a plane contemplating jumping with an experienced skydiver. Or on a ladder cleaning the gutters (yes, I’m afraid of heights). What did that fee like?  For me it feels like I can barely breathe; that my lungs have ceased to function. Not at all like nausea.
  • Take action. If it’s fear, I take another look at my choices and then make a decision. If it’s my gut, then I’ve learned to trust what it’s telling me. Always. And act accordingly.

You can learn the difference between gut knowing and fear reactions.  It is so worth it because it will save you a lot of emotional pain, time, and even possibly money.

Finding your inner voice

Quote of the Week

The Voice
There is a voice inside of you
That whispers all day long,
“I feel this is right for me,
I know that this is wrong.”
No teacher, preacher, parent, friend
Or wise man can decide
What’s right for you–just listen to
The voice that speaks inside
.
― Shel Silverstein

Announcement

Blog: In case you missed it, here’s my latest blog.

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.

Pay me now or pay me later

A few years back, I owned a house I loved. It was old Victorian that I had restored to its natural beauty. I’d sunk everything I had into that house, being as careful as I could. And yet, in the end, I was forced to sell it because I let what turned out to be a scammer talk me into doing some major work for me.

I was wooed – partly – by his competitive rates. Also by an engineer who I thought was truthful, and who recommended him. Both turned out to be untrue. Someone reading this might think I didn’t do the thing we’re all told to do: get a number of estimates and references.  I did all of that. What I didn’t do was listen to my gut, which was screaming at me big time.

So I lost my beautiful house, thankfully to a young couple who loved it and weren’t planning on gutting it.

I may have saved a little up front, but paid much more in the end. Because I ignored my gut.

Attending to what you really know deep inside is tricky – is what I’m feeling some fear that isn’t real or even useful (an emotional reaction), or is it my inner knowing that this isn’t right? There is a way to find out.

  • Find the feeling. Do a scan of your body to see what sensations are coming up for you. A sick feeling in your stomach? A quivering and tightness in your chest? A tension between your shoulder blades? Whatever it is, identify it in visceral terms. For me, it was a sense of nausea and a desire to move back out of harm’s way.
  • Compare it: To a time you felt fear and knew it. When you were safely behind glass on the 50th floor of a tower, looking down. Or up in a plane contemplating jumping with an experienced skydiver. Or on a ladder cleaning the gutters (yes, I’m afraid of heights). What did that fee like? For me it feels like I can barely breathe; that my lungs have ceased to function. Not at all like nausea.
  • Take action. If it’s fear, I take another look at my choices and then make a decision. If it’s my gut, then I’ve learned to trust what it’s telling me. Always. And act accordingly.

You can learn the difference between gut knowing and fear reactions.  It is so worth it because it will save you a lot of emotional pain, time, and even possibly money.

 

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 .

The story of a purse abuser

I have a story. Two days ago my purse fell apart. The story of how I chose this purse has its own story, but that isn’t the one I want to tell today. Today I want to tell how I became a purse abuser.

Yes, you read right – I am a purse abuser. After carefully getting the purse that would fulfill all my requirements, it still ended up not being quite adequate. I wanted one that was well made of good material so that it wouldn’t fall apart. I wanted it big enough to hold my notebook along with everything else that usually goes in purses. And, I wanted one that could be worn as a back pack so that one shoulder didn’t end up in pain.

I got all those things, paying more than I wanted. That purse was and is attractive and roomy. The only problem is that once I got it, my requirements changed. I discovered, for instance, that I really needed a mouse because the keypad wasn’t reliable. Then I noticed that the battery life wasn’t all that good, so I also added a chord. And sometimes, I needed extra research material, so in they went as well.

Soon that purse was overloaded and really heavy (which is why I needed a backpack model in the first place). And sure enough, one day, almost simultaneously, the hardware on one strap shattered, the zipper broke, and the handle shredded.

I do this with every purse I’ve ever owned. My need to be prepared under any circumstance means that I “need” to have with me every conceivable thing that could possibly help in any given situation. You might suggest a suitcase with wheels, but honestly, whatever I get would soon be inadequate. I know this because I’ve tried it.

Pause.

I hope my story is entertaining and that you’ve recognized similar things in yourself or a friend. I’m wondering if you have some advice you’d love to give me, or an equally entertaining story of your own.

Stories are powerful. They grab our attention in ways that nothing else can. They influence what we do and how we view the things around us.  They have the power to light our world, and to darken it.  They can change our perspective.

Coming out as a purse abuser by telling my story means something else: it means I can now change it.

I wonder what that story will be.

The danger of a single story – Chimamanda Adichie

 

 

Quote of the Week

There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”
― Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Announcement

Blog: In case you missed it, here’s my latest blog.

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.