The Strengths Within

Hello Friends!

I am expecting great things for you and me in 2016 because with faith and some creative positioning, there is nothing we can’t do!!! Absolutely NOTHING!


So I wanted to drop by quickly to see if you will join me in exploring your strengths and talents. You know those finely developed skills that set you apart or those God given abilities that make you special. I believe our strengths and talents are the guideposts to our purpose in life. And once you’ve figured out your purpose, a dynamic vision for your life can be born. But it all starts with knowing and understanding the strengths within.


When I began my coaching practice, I decided to focus my coaching on Positive Psychology. Positive Psychology focuses on how to help human beings prosper and lead healthy, happy lives mainly by helping them access their strengths, gifts and talents. Simply put…the thought is… the more you operate in your strengths, the happier your life will be. I am a walking testimony to this fact which is why I encourage my clients through strength building. Sounds great, right? I think so. The problem however, is that most people have no idea what their strengths are. They don’t understand the power of their gifts and have no idea how to direct their talents to lead happy, successful lives.


I want to help you all in this area. So back to my request at the beginning of this post…please join me in exploring your strengths. I am going to give you two easy ways to begin to tap into your strengths within. Below are a few assessments that will give you a good indication of what you are working with. They are all FREE. YAY! But very capable.


Please do yourself a favor and learn more about what makes you uniquely who you are. This is the first step in the Vision Making process. Tis the season for Vision Boards and Goal Setting. I’m asking you to Pause this year, Explore your strengths and Learn how to leverage them for success, AND THEN Create your Vision Boards or Goals. StrengthsFinder 2.0 is another tool that I make EVERY client take at the beginning of working together. The cost on that assessment is about $15.00, however you will need someone certified in StrengthsFinder to interpret your results accurately.


In any case, do yourself a favor and identify your strengths within. Trust me, you will thank me later.


Via Survey of Character Strengths AND Brief Strengths Test

https://www.authentichappiness.sas.upenn.edu/user/login?destination=node/434 

You will need to do a quick registration. They can be found under questionnaires.

Spiritual Gifts Test  

http://giftstest.com/ 

You will need to do a quick registration.


Blessings!


Natasha Gayden is the founder of Elevate! Master Coaching. Natasha brings over 20 years of corporate experience identifying and developing high potential talent within individuals and teams. She as has many years of life experiences and a track record of helping people unstuck in their lives. Natasha specializes in the development of human potential across the personal/professional spectrum of life. She brings to the table significant Coaching, Training, and Consulting experience in the areas of Strategic Planning, insight, leadership skills, executive presence and overall life resiliency.

Source: www.elevatemastercoaching.com

My Word for 2016

As a society we seem to have turned away from New Year’s resolutions and turned toward a single word to sum up our intentions for the clean slate of a new year. A Word which could and would bring us back to center in moments of uncertainty, moments when a decision mandates we consider the bigger picture of our why and how.

As I embraced the search for my own why and how I paused to take a look deep inside, to see what was important to me. Really, I was searching for a word that summed up my goals and aspirations – but what are they? Some aspirations like prioritizing my marriage, regaining a higher level of fitness and shedding the final forty pounds of baby weight have been with me for a while. Other goals like ignoring comparisons to other mothers are newer, but no less compelling. These goals required a word that was action oriented and contemplative.  A word that wouldn’t shrink under the sheer volume and momentum of a mompreneur’s to do list.

I’m not entirely sure if I found my word or my word found me. Either way it is concise, compact and oddly liberating.

My word for 2016 is Me.

That’s Me with a deliberately capitalized M – the Me of my higher, enlightened Self.

What does Me mean? It means a year of radical self-love and radical self-care, which ensures I show up as the best version of Me possible.

Me: connecting deliberately with my husband. Sharing my joy, my strength, my passion and my compassion.

Me: connecting consciously with my child.  Focusing when we are together kicking the ‘must multitask’ monkey mind to the curb and reveling in the joy of raising a competent, independent thinker.

Me: shrugging off unsolicited advice and comparisons. I’m the Wife, Mother and Woman I’m meant to be. I am enough as I am and I chose to grow stronger and more fearless each day.

Me: eating healthy foods 85-90% of the time. Me and My Family are worth the time and cost associated with proper, healthy meals, nutritious foods and luscious desserts. Oh and drinking more water because I’m worth the potty break time-outs.

Me: Running. Lifting. Coming back to my badass self who could once out lift every other chick in the gym.

Me: Splurging on new running shoes, seamless socks and a weekly yoga class.

Me: growing into my professional role. Working during office hours with clients and on programs that bring passion, purpose and empowerment.

Me: caring about those who care about me. Friendship is built on trust, loyalty and laughter.

Me: laughing long and loud with those friends I value who force me to level up my game.

That’s Me for 2016. What’s your word?


Jennifer Bellber is a Certified Professional Life Coach & Energy Leadership Index Master Practitioner. She's a wife, mother of a toddler, sometimes blogger, photographer for fun and charitable causes, slow runner and weight lifting enthusiast who reduced her physical self by 120 pounds a few years ago. 

Jennifer's passion is helping overwhelmed parents figure out who they want to be when their kids grow up, ditch the Mommy Guilt (or Daddy Guilt as the case may be) and live a connected, empowered, wickedly amazing sexy life of their own design.

To learn more about Jennifer, visit: www.jenniferbellber.com

Source: www.jenniferbellber.com

Beauty For Ashes - Living with Pain

About two years ago, my husband and I decided to do a 7 day fast. I had not done a fast in several years due to being diagnosed as Pre-Diabetic, having Fibromyalgia Syndrome and High Blood Pressure. I typically wouldn’t alter anything from the routine of food I consumed because any little imbalance could result in weeks of unrelenting pain. I chose not to take all of the pain meds prescribed by my doctors because I believe they just mask the pain, cause dependency and decrease the quality of life. Some people believe differently, however this is my choice. I choose to endure the pain, press through, lean into it, so I can lead a somewhat normal life. So as you can imagine a 7 day fast could have grave implications on my well-being, not to mention I had to go to the corporate headquarters to sit in meetings for 4 days. Well I was on day 3 and I had a headache that was unbearable!!! I felt like I was going to pass out. Then a co- worker noticed I was not myself and asked me what was wrong. I broke down and told her I was fasting and just like someone delirious in pain, I went on and on about how hungry I was and how the pain was racking my body. I was almost in tears. But then this women looked at me with so much love and compassion and said to me, “Compare the suffering”. It was like a bolt of lightning had struck and landed directly on my soul. What she was saying was to compare the suffering of Jesus with my own current situation. Well how was I supposed to do that? There is no comparison and her point was well received. I went to the bathroom and prayed for strength and thanked Jesus for His suffering for me. I then put mind over matter and went on with my meeting. An hour later, lunch was served and miraculously all the things I could eat, were served. My pain was still there, but I needed to put it into perspective. Pain is sometimes necessary. In Jesus case it was necessary and in our lives it can be a necessary benefit as well. This is how pain benefits me:

Pain lets me know I’m alive. We’ve all heard the saying “I pinched myself to see if this is real”. People say that because the pain from the pinch lets them know whatever it is, is real. So many of us go through life sleepwalking and acting like the walking dead. We are not living life, just going through it, numb to everything around us. But when you experience pain, it becomes a wake up call. Pain lets you know you are still here and have work to do.

Pain lets me know something is wrong. In general, pain is an indicator that something is amiss in the body and needs to be healed or corrected. Similarly, pain in my life lets me know I’m not sleeping enough, not eating properly or dealing with too much stress. It also tells me when my body has had its fill of activities and when it is time to rest. My body in the past would lie to me. I would be tired and stressed and it would keep going, acting as if everything was okay when it wasn’t. My pain is like the truth ringing in my ears, loudly, screaming….TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF!

Pain helps me to be more compassionate. I have to admit, before my fibromyalgia diagnosis, I was hard on people who claimed limitations. If you were sick, get over it and come to work anyway. If you were going through a break up, cry for 2 days and get back on the wagon. When people claimed to be fatigued, I thought that just meant they were tired or sleepy. And hey, we can sleep when we are dead, right? Wrong! The first time I felt fatigue, which is commonplace these days, I thought I was dying a slow death. Tired is to someone pinching you as fatigue is to someone hitting you with a baseball bat. They are NOT the same. And everything people go through in life, whether pain in their body, hearts or minds should be handled with the utmost care. People in pain should be held with compassion, not pity, not disbelief and not business as usual, but compassion. God blessed me with a compassionate husband who along with my pain has taught me to extend grace, passion and love. I am thankful for my pain because It has made me a better person.

Finally, pain gives me purpose.God promises us Beauty for Ashes. This simply means that out of our pain, disappointments and brokenness, beauty will manifest itself. There is a purpose to everything….nothing God does is in vain. I… like Paul have asked God to take this thorn from me and He up to this point has said no. And because I trust God and refuse to lean on my own understanding, I know there is a purpose for my pain. Around the same time I was diagnosed with my incurable, life long pain, my grandson died. It was because of these instances that my purpose was born. I got serious about my life, I got engaged in life, I stopped playing church and lived for Christ. I sought my purpose and began living in it. Now pain moved in with my purpose and they will not be separated. And I’m okay with that as long as I am living a purposeful life. No one ever told us that finding our purpose would be a painless life. Just look at Mother Theresa, Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Pain followed them, it was part of their purpose. And part of my purpose is to help other Chronic pain sufferers know that they can still have purposeful and wonderful life.

Beauty for Ashes is what God promised me. So I can hold on. I can see the big picture. I can endure the pain. I understand its benefits. I thank the Lord for my pain. But its hard. It’s especially hard on days like today when I can barely type this blog, I’m fatigued, I’m experiencing brain fog and my body feels like its been hit by a Mack truck. However, I will overcome, because I have work to do. I have a purpose…..

Audaciously,

Natasha

Source: https://elevatesite.wordpress.com/2015/10/...

The Power Of Your Thoughts

Have you ever wondered how powerful your thoughts are? Do you know that what you think is what you make manifest in your life?

You may profess you seek for abundance but without having a thought process or mindset inline and aligned with abundance, it will be hard to achieve. Our thoughts are life and bring about the blessings we experience. The moment we align our thoughts to the words we speak as our minds process those, we walk in the realm of that which is spoken.

We may subconsciously think that some things are not attainable. The more we allow our thoughts to remain in that subconscious state; we will not be able to achieve those things. We are created to achieve the impossible and can truly make this happen by a making a shift in our mindset.

We were created with abundance from our inception and our conception. In this lies the power that allows us to fulfill every possibility. However, some tasks may seem daunting but are attainable, as long as we set our minds on endless possibilities. 

Choose to speak life to every situation you face. What you speak is what you make happen. What you make happen, is what you work at. What you work at, is what leads to your success. Without a shift in your mindset, there will be no shift. Start to make that shift and see things begin to manifest in abundance. Learn to tame your thoughts; do not let your thoughts tame you. There is power in your thoughts and it commands the words you utter. The more positive thoughts you have, the more positive things will manifest in your life. Shift your thoughts towards positivity. A positive mindset can only yield positive results.

Copyright © 2014 Kemi Sogunle - www.love-not-hurt.org

Kemi Sogunle is an author, writer, speaker, professional life and relationship coach.  She is also the Founder/CEO of the nonprofit organization (501c3), Love Not Hurt, an organization that promotes self-development, building healthier and stronger relationships while living with purpose.

Source: http://www.love-not-hurt.org

Turning Let Go into Let’s GO!

I have a secret I want to share with you.

Outside of my wife and a few close friends, I’ve kept this little secret to myself and away from others, including my parents. 

But recently, I realized what I’ve been holding-in has actually been holding me back. 

I’ve spent the past several months spinning a narrative that said I retired from my last executive position. But, the reality is, I was let go.

After 18 years, the company’s new leadership notified me, in their right, that they were “changing directions.”

I’ve had jobs from paperboy to short-order cook, to sales representative to executive leader, but this was a first. 

I was shocked and embarrassed.

What did this say about me as a business leader?

What did this mean as a provider to my family?

What were my future career possibilities?

It was fertile soil for my little annoying gremlin.

What’s a gremlin, you ask?

Some call it an inner critic and others use more biting language. Regardless of the label, gremlins plant seeds of doubt and worry in your mind that show up before and/or after big events such as presentations, interviews, career changes — and even when you asked someone to prom.   

Yes, our gremlins loved our high school years because the seeds they planted can last a lifetime.  We all have them. They get you close and whisper: You are not bold enough, not smart enough, or cool enough.  

Or, in my case, they whispered: You are not competent enough.  Our inner, self-inflicted taunts think they are protecting us from judgment. But the truth is, they limit us and keep us stuck in the status quo.

It seemed like a safe play to call it  “retirement.” Although my age and lack of independent wealth confused people in my circle, calling my dismissal a retirement was a “good enough” description. But, it wasn’t true.

During my recovery from my cycling accident, I began to understand that “good enough” was no longer good enough. To reach my potential, I had to quiet that gremlin. I knew then, as I do now, that I always have choices.  

We all have choices. We can choose to listen to our gremlins and limit our potential, or we can breakaway and believe in our unlimited potential.  

I chose to believe that I was strong enough and tough enough to handle my physical rehabilitation, get back on that bike, and race again.

And eventually, I did.

Today, I’m choosing to breakaway, again, by sharing my truth with you.

Being let go doesn’t make me less of a leader. It just makes me human.

That pivotal moment in my life became my “jump-in moment.” It helped me to leap out of my comfort zone toward the unknown. It encouraged me to trust my values and to embrace the things that make me a unique leader, coach, speaker, and consultant.

Now, I harness those qualities to continue to build my own business and to serve my clients.

It feels good to be open and transparent. I probably should call my parents now, before they read this online.

Do you have a secret you have been holding in that holds you back?

Do you want to tell your gremlin to take a hike?

Do you want more than just “good enough” at work? 

If you’ve read this far, I believe you could answer yes to every one of those questions.

I can help you. Let’s connect today.  I have a special offer for all those gremlin slayers out there that I believe will help you make your own leap forward.

Click contact to set up a time for us to chat.


In his coaching practice, Peloton Coaching & Consulting, Michael O'Brien partners with today's business leaders to help them move from functional performance to optimal performance. His aim is to change lives by enhancing leadership energy, engagement, and fulfillment, and demonstrating how these qualities can cascade throughout organizations. To Learn more about Michael and Peloton Coaching & Consulting, visit www.pelotoncc.net.

Source: www.pelotoncc.net

Jump In & Move Beyond Good Enough

“Jump in OB. The water’s great,” they shouted up to me from the quarry.

“Yeah, yeah, I’ll be there in a minute,” I shouted back.

But secretly I was thinking: Umm, there’s no way I am jumping in that quarry. My little buddy, Fear, and I will just hang out and watch everyone else have a great time.

Sitting on the edge watching everyone else leap forward is good enough.

That was the scene about 15 years ago during the Tyler Place Resort Mountain-Bike Ride, the capstone to our family vacation. Each Friday at Tyler Place, guests head out for a mountain-bike ride through Vermont’s single track, which hugs Lake Champlain. It’s great fun.

And the piece de resistance of the ride is throwing caution to the wind and jumping into the quarry. It’s a 34-foot drop (see video) from the edge to the water below.

The easy part, at least for me, was the mountain-bike ride. The jump? Not so much. 

I’m a strong believer of Sheryl Sandberg’s lean in message. I love it because as a business leadership coach and motivational speaker, I witness many people who  just sit on the sidelines and settle for good enough rather than choosing to lean in and take action. 

The truth is, sometimes, to really breakthrough to the next level of success, you need to jump in with both feet.

I was doing plenty of leaning in at the quarry. I would gingerly walk to the edge, look down, gulp, and scurry back. I did this about three times until I finally asked myself: What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

The answer: I would jump in.

In that moment, I knew I had a choice. I could listen to my little buddy Fear, or I could leap forward into the unknown and jump in. 

I ended up jumping in four times that day.

That literal leap of faith gave me the confidence I needed to make the decision to jump from executive leadership to starting my own coaching and consulting firm.

As I was making my decision on my career jump, my reliable little buddy Fear showed up again to harass me and stir up limiting beliefs.   

Michael, what if you can’t provide for your family?

What if you embarrass yourself?

What if you can’t run your own business?

Just like at the quarry, I had to take a leap of faith. Neither leap was easy. But, I realized I had a choice: I could let Fear drive my decision or I could trust my talents, instincts, and enthusiasm and jump in. 

And again, I jumped.

I’m so thankful I did.

Whether you’re jumping into a quarry, voicing your opinion, changing careers, or going for that big promotion, Fear has a way of making you doubt yourself. It does everything it can to hold you back.  

Your job is to name the Fear and jump in in spite of it.

So, let me ask you: What would you do if you weren’t afraid? 

How would your work be different? 

Are you tired of settling for “good enough?” 

If you answered yes, that’s terrific because you know that good enough isn’t really good enough if you want to maximize success in your career and life.   

If you are looking for a partner who can help you move beyond good enough, I encourage you to contact me today. Reference this blog post, in our call, and I’ll give you a special offer to help you leverage your belief system and maximize your career and life.  

Go ahead. What are you waiting for?  Jump in. The water is great. 


In his coaching practice, Peloton Coaching & Consulting, Michael O'Brien partners with today's business leaders to help them move from functional performance to optimal performance. His aim is to change lives by enhancing leadership energy, engagement, and fulfillment, and demonstrating how these qualities can cascade throughout organizations. To Learn more about Michael and Peloton Coaching & Consulting, visit www.pelotoncc.net.

Source: www.pelotoncc.net

What is the worst possible scenario that could be? It’s not always our truth!

Don’t let the title of this article lead you to a negative mindset, it’s not meant to. It is all about shifting to a more positive and realistic frame of mind. In coaching we call this “safety net” coaching and we use it to let clients explore what the worst possible outcome in a situation might be, because most of the time it isn’t the truth and just a story or a flurry of thoughts that we create in our minds that only serves us by holding us back and keep us stuck in non-movement and in a place of fear. It came to mind for me earlier today as fear came up for me. It was then that I realized that I had unknowingly used safety net coaching in my own life challenges and I thought I would share some examples of what that looks like. Fear can be a very real feeling, yet it can also be a debilitating one and in that sense not real and it holds us back from what we truly want.

So for me in certain life challenges and to get to the next level I had to ask myself the question: “What is the worst possible thing that could happen?” When I thought about the worst and wrapped my mind around that, I think it lead me to: “Ok, so what is the best possible outcome?” and it allowed me to process things in a more realistic and present mindset.

When I was deciding if I wanted to end a marriage in my late 20’s, I was terrified to leave the relationship for many reasons and I thought of what the worst possible outcome could be, and there really was none. In fact, the worst possible scenario would have been if I stayed in the relationship and remained unhappy and looked back in the same place years later with regret.

In my 30’s I experienced the traumatic event of my mother’s passing and giving birth to my daughter within days. I was in a very dark place called a “grief induced post-partum depression.” For me simply being in that state was the worst possible scenario, so I finally managed to shift out of it (with much support in many areas) to a place of turning all of my negative life experiences into positive ones.

In my 40’s I was diagnosed with breast cancer and that was definitely a game changer for me because I was consciously aware at that time and the thoughts and emotions kept flowing around my mortality, around where my life was going, around my career, my relationship and my children. I remember thinking at that time also: “What is the worst possible thing that could happen?” The answer there was that I could not control this diagnosis and that yes, the worst case scenario would be I could die. Being a religious person and one with a very deep connection to faith, I was willing to accept that if it was, but that didn’t stop me from thinking about what could be and what would be and that was the best possible scenario. So when I got passed the place of what the worst could be, I was able to get to what the best possible outcome could be and although it would be a painful and emotional experience, I could walk through what I had to face, get the care and treatment that I needed and then get back to managing my relationships, my career, the care of my children and of myself.

More recently I experienced this with a career change. After 30 years in one field, I decided to start two new businesses. My initial reaction was to immediately revert to safety and took a very well-paying job where someone else would employ me. This didn’t sit well in me for long in my gut and I decided to nix that choice and go with opening up both businesses. Again, I asked myself: “What’s the worst case scenario?” The answer was simple: “If I failed I could always go back to safe, but if I didn’t explore the fear the regret would be even worse!” So here’s the thing, by exploring the worst possible scenario came the birth of the best case scenario and what exists now for me, the opening and sustaining of both businesses and the flexibility to pursue my passion.

So you see, most of the time we go on automatic pilot and think the only thing that can happen is the worst possible scenario, when in reality that is so far from the truth because we have so many options open and available to us.

Even if we do have to face the “worst possible scenario” we can do it in a place where we live in the moment and we make choices on how we want to move forward. I am seeing it via a colleague who is facing a “worst case scenario” in terms of an illness that is very real and she still walks and lives in a space of her best possible scenario every day. I have to say I am truly amazed and inspired and so happy to know her and be taught by her. We are forever all teachers and students and we were put on this earth to explore and make choices. 


Gina Costa, CPC, ELI-MP is the founder of New Beginnings Coaching Services, LLC, which helps women diagnosed with breast cancer cope, step by step, with the emotional and physical challenges they experience, so they gain confidence and feel in control of their life again. To learn more about Gina and her coaching practice, visit http://www.newbeginningswithgina.com/

Source: http://www.newbeginningswithgina.com

The world is your oyster... so go ahead and SHUCK IT!

I celebrated a birthday in January and received one card specifically that really got me to thinking. My dear friend wrote "The world is your oyster... so go ahead and SHUCK IT!" I love that term, not that I hadn't heard it before, but to associate it with myself and what this year has the potential to be about is so real for me that I had to share.

How many times do you see and feel things for others that you don't apply to yourself? Why is it that everyone else is worthy of making the big IT happen and we go on living our ordinary lives, devoid of our own IT??

Well, the answer to that question is the person who looks back at you in the mirror! It's really about how you see yourself, how you support yourself, and how you get in your own way towards reaching your intended goal. It's about you not letting yourself off the hook, about you carving out and keeping that time for you and what's important. It’s about putting a stop to consistently putting other people and things in your way and using them as an excuse. (whoa)... I know, I may have hit a nerve, but dammit, I'm talking to myself too!

Half of the reason why we aren't where we want to be is because we do not make ourselves a priority, often times believing and behaving as if we're the only ones who can get a certain things done. Am I right? What would happen if we suspend that idea and let others take care of themselves first. I’m not suggesting that we totally abandon our family, friends, and commitments. The challenge to myself and you is to think about you FIRST.

Here's my short list of ways that will support me as I SHUCK IT this year. Feel free to make it your own or add to it!

  • Write it down/journal - My single most effective form of outlet.
  • Record it - Not my cup of tea, but may work for you
  • Use your most creative hours in the day to create (every day) - for me 5 - 7 am (I know.. crazy, right?)
  • Put it in the calendar - Keeps you timely
  • Stay out of overwhelm - once your calendar is populated, manage it properly
  • Just say No – “No” is a complete sentence. Once you get into explaining why “no” is “no”, you will talk yourself into something.
  • Work out/exercise - together with early morning creative time??? Game over!
  • Co-create - find a partners) who shares your vision and will share the load.
  • Use technology for reminders - never hurts, so use it
  • Cross it off when it's complete - This motivates me!
  • Schedule time for facebook, and other social media outlets - They are good for some things but not during my creative times
  • Schedule time for e-mail - this disciplines not only you, but the people you respond to
  • Get help from a coach - "Everybody needs somebody, sometimes!" Every coach needs a coach. I have one, do you? I would be more than happy to be a resource to you!
  • Finish what you start - plan how you're either going to a) finish it or b) delegate it; or c) delete it. Thanks David Allen - Author of "Getting Things Done"
  • Just do it - plain and simple... shut it down, stop with the excuses, and get it done!

This is just the beginning of great ways to shuck it this year. Please comment and add to the list!

Promise yourself that you'll do it for you. If you need accountability, connect with a friend who will hold your feet to the fire. I would be more than happy to do the same.

Click here for accountability NOW!

May 2015 be the year you SHUCK IT!

My hope & prayer is that you find your pearl along the way!


Tamarra Causley Robinson has 20+ years of experience as an IT Professional and through the many fluctuations in world of IT, uses her experience of staying relevant and prepared for change within her coaching firm, Causley Robinson & Associates where Tamarra serves as the CEO, Lead Coach and Consultant. Tamarra is a game-changer and specializes in assisting professionals who are grappling with self-imposed or organizational change by encouraging, and assisting as they work through emotions of fear, helplessness and hopelessness that change creates to a safe place of forward movement, confidence and power. Through her coaching program, clients adopt new bold and courageous ways of living their lives, unapologetically! To learn more, visit www.dare2doitnow.com

Source: www.dare2doitnow.com