Self Care

Valentine’s Day Letter

I have a confession to make – I’m a little embarrassed by it. I often talk to people about offering themselves the same kindness they would offer others in their lives. When we discover how they’ve been feeding themselves negative messages about who they are, we often realize how they would NEVER, and I mean NEVER, say those very same things to describe anyone else they care about. Yet, many of us make derogatory comments about ourselves.

I’m guilty of it.

My sons play hockey, and for one, it was Senior Night a couple of weeks ago. The seniors each take a picture with their parents before the game and a tradition is for the moms to wear the boys’ ‘away’ jerseys. My son’s team has 14 graduating seniors and the parents have been meeting at frigid ice rinks at ridiculous hours for many, many years. We’ve shared victories, losses, injuries, frustrations, cups of coffee and hot chocolate, lots of pasta parties and a couple of glasses of wine.

The hockey moms decided to have a picture taken of all of us. I hadn’t seen the picture until another mom showed me at one of the games last week.

And then I did it.

I saw the photo and I said with a sour face, “Ugh. I look like a linebacker.” I heard the words fly out of my mouth and immediately wanted to go back in time to reverse them. It was only a moment before I realized it didn’t matter what I looked like in the picture. What DID matter was that I was IN it, a part of an incredible group of women, evidence of the fact that we shared our sons’ passion for the sport (most of the time) and the last decade or so with one another.

I realized I’ve still got some work to do. Who cares how I look in pictures? Better to be present, participate and have fun!

Here’s the picture I’m talking about. I’m standing at the end on the left.

hockey moms

I’m so happy to have it to remind me of the time spent with these women watching our sons play their most favorite sport.

A simple, knee-jerk response has rekindled in me the desire to be more kind to myself, to check in on the automatic dialogue I have with me. I will honor myself going forward. No more self-deprecating remarks. They really don’t serve a purpose. I will offer myself a little more love.

So with Valentine’s Day just a few days away, how will you extend more kindness and love toward YOURself?

Will it be by checking YOUR internal dialogue? Or by eating healthier so you’ll feel better? Or by getting in an extra work out? Or by reaching out to a friend or family member you haven’t spoken to in a while because that would make YOU feel good to do it? Or will it be by doing something simply for the fun of it (here’s hoping there’s a little bit of THAT going on!)?

Sending a little love your way,

Laurie

Laurie Leinwand is a Professional Life Coach assisting clients with a variety of personal and professional life issues. Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching encompasses Laurie’s work as a life coach for women and men, career life coach and work-life balance coach.

Laurie provides personal development assistance with regard to powerful issues such as how to make a change in your life and finding fulfillment and your life purpose. In addition, she works with clients interested in learning how to say no, setting limits and boundaries, as well as balancing work and life.

Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching is located in Randolph, NJ and services the surrounding communities of Morristown, Denville, Parsippany, Florham Park and Mountain Lakes, New Jersey, though much of her coaching is done on the phone and is accessible to clients worldwide.

 

The Power of Play

I was talking with a friend recently and we fell into a discussion about how perfectionism and wanting things “just so” often slowed us down, or kept us from moving forward altogether.

He then told me a beautiful story about how he had been building with blocks with his young daughter. He was so focused on creating a solid structure that he found himself constructing a perfect pyramid. This was incredibly annoying to his daughter who seemed to be far more interested in playing with the blocks and having fun. Finally, my friend succumbed as his daughter convinced him to build something “her” way.

What they ended up constructing swayed back and forth and teetered on the edge of collapse but ironically reached far greater heights than any of his previous efforts had.block tower

We laughed as he shared this story because it illustrated the “power” of play and the importance of having the freedom to be creative and ‘color outside the lines.’ It made me contemplate the new heights I could reach if I threw the rule book aside once in a while and gave myself permission to play just for play’s sake.

I’ve decided it’s way more important than I had imagined and I’m determined to incorporate more of the spirit of play into both my professional AND personal arenas.

How often do YOU play?

Warmly, Laurie

Laurie Leinwand is a Professional Life Coach assisting clients with a variety of personal and professional life issues. Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching encompasses Laurie’s work as a life coach for women, career life coach and work-life balance coach.

Some of the topics of focus in her practice as a professional life coach are assisting and supporting individuals that are stay at home parents (stay at home moms and dads are constantly forced to adapt to their current circumstances as their children grow and change) as well as those returning to work. Laurie works with people reentering the workforce who are unsure of their direction and interested in cultivating professional development skills and support.

Laurie also provides personal development assistance with regard to powerful issues such as how to make a change in your life and finding fulfillment and your life purpose. In addition, she works with clients interested in learning how to say no and setting boundaries.

Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching is located in Randolph, NJ and services the surrounding communities of Morristown, Denville, Parsippany, Florham Park and Mountain Lakes, New Jersey, though much of her coaching is done on the phone and is accessible to clients worldwide.  Laurie is a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF) and the New Jersey Professional Coaches Association (ICF-NJ).

Break Through the Bottleneck

I wanted to check in to see how the start of your year has been. It’s interesting – some people have talked to me about starting their year like gangbusters, but more people have mentioned that they’ve struggled a little in terms of developing some momentum.

There seem to be several reasons for this:

  • the traditional “coming down” after the holiday season – the decorations are put away, there are fewer social gatherings on the calendar,
  • the exhaustion and physical illness that sometimes follow the running around that accompanies the holidays,
  • here in the Northeast, the weather has been challenging with multiple snows and crazy temperature swings that have included extreme cold that has caused people to want to hibernate rather than get out and get things done,
  • or simply the not knowing where to begin.

So here are some simple suggestions for breaking through the bottleneck:bottleneck

1) Practice self-care – Get ample sleep, proper nutrition (avoid the tendency to carb load in the winter), exercise and take your vitamins! Rest, fuel and movement are the foundation of our existence. Ensure that you are taking steps to help you feel good and maintain good health.

2) Stay in touch – Plan social outings, participate in your community, plug into your network of support. If you don’t have a support network, now is a perfect time to cultivate one!

3) New goal? Pick a place to begin – There’s no need to belabor the thought process or seek the perfect time, place or set of circumstances. Begin somewhere and the next step will become clear after that step is complete, and so on. Don’t get ready to get ready because “ready” rarely comes.

How to keep this going?!

See these steps as gifts to you with a long-term payoff (a gift that keeps on giving) rather than things you “should” be doing.

If you practice basic self-care, engage with others regularly, and take consistent steps toward achieving something that is truly important to you, you’ll have more energy, be lifted up and begin each day with the knowledge that more good “stuff” is coming your way because you are consciously paving the way for it.

Enjoy the rest of your January!

Warmly, Laurie

Laurie Leinwand is a Professional Life Coach assisting clients with a variety of personal and professional life issues. Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching encompasses Laurie’s work as a life coach for women and men, career life coach and work-life balance coach.

Some of the topics of focus in her practice as a professional life coach are assisting and supporting individuals that are stay at home parents (stay at home moms and dads are constantly forced to adapt to their current circumstances as their children grow and change) as well as those returning to work. Laurie works with people reentering the workforce who are unsure of their direction and interested in cultivating professional development skills and support.

Laurie also provides personal development assistance with regard to powerful issues such as howto make a change in your life and finding fulfillment and your life purpose. In addition, she works with clients interested in learning how to say no and setting boundaries.

Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching is located in Randolph, NJ and services the surrounding communities of Morristown, Denville, Parsippany, Florham Park and Mountain Lakes, New Jersey, though much of her coaching is done on the phone and is accessible to clients worldwide.  Laurie is a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF) and the New Jersey Professional Coaches Association (ICF-NJ).

Do You Have a Tool Kit?

Because I’m a psychotherapist as well a certified coach, many of my clients share stories with me about having experienced incredible anxiety in various types of situations. One common anxiety-ridden situation is sitting in traffic.

I share with my clients the concept of having a Tool Kit. It provides a feeling of preparedness and the knowledge that you have what you need – the notion of “I got this!”

trafficSome of the things I recommend people put in their Traffic Tool Kit is water, non-perishable snacks, music you enjoy or that wakes you up, music that relaxes you, a book on CD, gum or mints, Tylenol, a car charger for your phone and even a blanket.

We also talk about the importance of keeping thoughts in check and the relief that can come with surrendering to the situation.  When we yell, pound the steering wheel, and clench our fists, we fight against our current circumstances but with no results. It doesn’t get us where we want to go any faster, or cause the cars in front of us to part any sooner. If we focus on our breath (simply inhaling and exhaling at a steady, controlled rate) and remind ourselves that there is nothing we can do to change the situation, we release the resistance we feel and the accompanying symptoms of anxiety may begin to subside. You can choose how you respond to a situation in which you feel a lack of control.

Having a Tool Kit enables you to be proactive instead of reactive.

Are there Tool Kits you can assemble for other areas of your life that challenge you? Examples might be putting together some snacks, drinks, toothbrush, toothpaste, travel make-up and moisturizers on days when you have endless errands to run or back to back meetings, OR a Tool Kit for the babysitter to combat your child’s most common complaints when you’re not home, OR having your iPod and headphones for that dreaded visit to the doctor or dentist’s office.

What preparation can you do to ensure that things go as smoothly and as “painlessly” as possible – so you actually DO feel a semblance of control in situations you wish you could avoid?

If you have other ideas for Tool Kits, I’d love to hear about them and share them with the others who read this blog.  Please share them with me by writing laurie@ideas2action-coaching.com or by posting your comments below.

Thanks so much!

Warmly, Laurie

Laurie Leinwand is a Professional Life Coach assisting clients with a variety of personal and professional life issues. Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching encompasses Laurie’s work as a life coach for women and men, career life coach and work-life balance coach.

Some of the topics of focus in her practice as a professional life coach are assisting and supporting individuals that are stay at home parents (stay at home moms and dads are constantly forced to adapt to their current circumstances as their children grow and change) as well as those returning to work. Laurie works with people reentering the workforce who are unsure of their direction and interested in cultivating professional development skills and support.

Laurie also provides personal development assistance with regard to powerful issues such as how to make a change in your life and finding fulfillment and your life purpose. In addition, she works with clients interested in learning how to say no and setting boundaries.

Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching is located in Randolph, NJ and services the surrounding communities of Morristown, Denville, Parsippany, Florham Park and Mountain Lakes, New Jersey, though much of her coaching is done on the phone and is accessible to clients worldwide.  Laurie is a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF) as well as ICF-NJ.

What are YOU worth?

I just returned from my second 2-day trip to San Francisco. These trips are for the purpose of developing my business. It is there that I met a supportive group of people and my own coach, who holds a vision for me and my business even when I have my moments of doubt.

small invest in yourself

These trips are a big expense in terms of time, money and energy. It takes me a full day to get to these seminars. I fly home on the red-eye so as not to “lose” an extra day but I just can’t seem to sleep on the flights home because I’m so pumped up from the meetings and feel so ready to move on my new and improved initiatives. However, I usually pay the price the following day when lack of sleep and not knowing what day it is begins to mess with me.

Flights are expensive and so are hotels and, of course, there is the cost of the program itself. But it’s worth it. And here’s why –

This is time set aside solely for me and my business. There are no distractions. Because I’ve made this financial investment in myself and my progress, you’d better believe I’m going to follow through on what I need to do to ensure I have every opportunity to succeed in manifesting my vision.  And, once again, I’ve determined that things are far more difficult (and don’t have to be) when I operate in isolation.

Support of others keeps us honest, real, accountable and moving forward. This is why I’ve chosen to go to the effort that I do.

The alternative is to endure a much longer learning curve and possibly succumb to the moments of self-doubt.  I don’t want that to be an option for me.

  • What do you do to invest in yourself?
  • Do you question the value of investing in yourself?
  • What leaps might you make if you enlisted support?

Secure some support for yourself, invest in YOU, and watch what happens!

You’re worth it, aren’t you?! It’s time to put YOUR ideas into action.

Warmly, Laurie

P.S. If you think I might be the right person to support you, let’s set aside time to talk about that possibility. I have several offerings and we can discuss what might be the best fit for you.  Click here to schedule an appointment. Let’s talk soon.

Laurie Leinwand is a Professional Life Coach assisting clients with a variety of personal and professional life issues. Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching encompasses Laurie’s work as a life coach for women and men, career life coach and work-life balance coach.

One of her specialty areas is career life coaching for women and men transitioning between jobs or reentering the workforce.  If you are stuck in your job or career and need help in finding fulfillment and your life purpose, Laurie can help you break through and arrive at your desired destination fast and efficiently.  She also coaches clients who are stay at home parents.  Stay at home moms and dads are required to make adjustments regularly as their children grow – this can be difficult.  Laurie also works with them as they make pivotal decisions such as returning to work.

Ideas 2 Action Life Coaching is located in Randolph, NJ and services the surrounding communities of Morristown, Denville, Parsippany, Florham Park and Mountain Lakes, New Jersey, though much of her coaching is done on the phone and is accessible to clients worldwide.

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