Listen to the Wisdom of Your Body

GregLeeAndAntoniaVanBeckerSometimes, we spend so much time trying to think through a problem that we just get stuck.  Our minds tend to spiral on the same thoughts over and over… not really giving any new information or help.

“What should I do?” is usually followed by an almost endless loop of “What should I do?”  Or worse yet, we take action, but then realize that our thinking was more limited than we thought.

There HAS to be a better way, right?

According to Greg Lee and Antonia Van Becker, there is!  We just have to shift from listening to our thoughts.  It is not shifting to listen to someone else… not a friend, spouse, relative, or even a therapist or coach (OK, you may want to consult with someone else, but that is not the only place).

So, where do you turn?  As it turns out, not too far from your mind.  Just a bit, ummm, down.

To your body.

Let me freely admit that for lots of years, I chose to NOT listen to my body.  I lived from the neck, up.  It would seem that one day, my body decided to get my attention.  And let’s just say that the resulting mess was painful and scary.  But my body got my attention!

Even if I didn’t know how to listen at that moment, I knew I needed to pay attention to it.

Greg and Antonia take it much further.  They suggest you can even ask your body for guidance… and your body will, well, guide you.

In this episode of the podcast, Antonia and Greg share what it means to “listen to your body.”  And they share 6 steps to follow when you hit a tipping point in your day (or your life).

Listen below!

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From Rebel To Vigilante (Self-Care)

IlanaKristevaDo you find yourself a bit rebellious?  Maybe you just don’t want to be told what to do.  Or maybe you just want to find your own voice.  I think we all have some rebellious place in there.  That rebellion can serve us or keep us stuck.

Ilana Kristeva tells me she was born rebellious.  Colicky and anemic as a baby, Ilana just pushed back.  She reports lots of parent/teacher conferences, since she didn’t much like directions.  Then, her body rebelled.

As diagnoses started stacking up, Ilana lost more and more control of her body, finally ending up in a wheelchair.  Unhappy and frustrated, Ilana finally hit a wall.  Literally and figuratively.  Coming down the hall in her home, Ilana collided with the wall, finding herself stuck.  And suddenly laughing.

That was the starting point of her healing.  In fact, she decided to take a stand-up comedy class (still in her wheelchair).

Slowly, Ilana began to understand that every cell in her body had the potential to heal, grow, and regenerate.  She decided to honor that. To use her conscious thoughts to speak to her body, even singing to herself.

Along the way, she realized that she had to take her own health into her own hands.  Sure, she could listen to the professionals.  But she had to take responsibility, if she were to find healing.  It was then that she converted her rebellious nature to a focused purpose.  She became a Self-Care Vigilante.

As Ilana and I chat in this Thriveology Podcast, we discuss the elements of being a Self-Care Vigilante.  How others can adopt the same mindset, taking control and responsibiliy for their well-being.  How they can live in gratitude.  Listen in for how to get a copy of Ilana’s books.

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Ilana’s Book:  Instant Gratitude

Perfect Imperfection On The Path To Thriving

AngelaStillwellMany times, life just kind of, well, hits us.  We have a major transition. Or we just hit a plateau.  What if you know there is more… you just can’t get there?  That’s when we have to find our “untapped strengths.”

Angela Stillwell is the “Vulnerability Warrior.”  Why?  Because she discovered that struggling with tough times can keep in in “survivial mode.”

Angela came from a dysfunctional family situation, with divorce and affairs, abuse, and the loss of her mother when she was young.  Yes, she “survivied” (as people would tell her), but that was not enough.

She knew there was more;  passion, purpose, perspective, service.  And Angela set out to find it.

As Angela shares with me, there are 3 steps to thriving:

  1. Connection
  2. Perfect imperfection
  3. Resurrection

Sounds like a pretty good formula to me!  Listen to this week’s podcast, as Angela shares her formula, step-by-step.

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Living Your Engagement

The Engaged Life Series


How to live an engaged life.  Find wellness, joy, and creativity as a way of fully engaging in life.
Over the last 2 episodes, we have been talking about YOUR Engaged Life. How to build a life of passion, purpose, and presence.

Amplifying that life through gratitude, spirituality, and awe.

Here’s the thing… not to be a downer here… you and I, we are going to die.  Someday.

Likely, you don’t know when that will happen.  I don’t know when I will die.  I just know that it is in my future.

Why does that matter?

That very fact is what makes life valuable, makes TIME valuable.  If you live forever, what you do today doesn’t matter so much.  You could do it tomorrow or next year, or in a hundred years.

But knowing we only have so much time… that changes things.  We have 2 tasks:  to live as fully as we can, in the time we have… and make that time last as long as possible.

At least, that is MY task.  How can I live fully?  And how can I live fully?

If you are thinking that might be YOUR task, listen in to the podcast below.

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3 P’s Of Engaged Life
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Book:  The Thrive Principles

Why We Stress

WhyWeStressI bet you hear it as much as I do.  You may even say it.  “I’m so stressed!”  The malady of the modern age.  Stressed out, exhausted, and frustrated.

But what IS stress?

As much as we toss that term around, sometimes almost as a badge of honor, you may not think about what that term is REALLY about.

These days, I tend to push my body, physically.  I take a good long walk in the morning, usually do a workout after that, then go to jiu jitsu 3 to 5 evenings per week.  My body can, indeed, get stressed.

When we talk about “stress,” in everyday life, we are more talking about psychological stress.  Which is really just a term for something else.  Something we’d rather not claim.

But once we recognize what it really is, we can do something about it.  So, let’s figure out why we stress… and what we can do about it.

Listen below to this episode of the Thriveology Podcast.

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Running Loops

RunningLoopsLike a broken record… or an endless audio loop.  Those thoughts that just keep turning in your mind.  Okay, in MY mind.  But I bet it happens to you, too.

Let’s say, hypothetically of course, that I get up to 2 emails.  One is complimentary, thanking me for resources, books, podcasts… things like that.  Then there is another email, critical and harsh, telling me how useless my info was.

I read them both and head off to walk my dog.

Do you think I ponder that kind one?  Or keep looping back to that unkind one?

Yep, you guessed it.  And I bet you guessed it because it happens to you, too.

And that thought… it isn’t just a passing thought.  No.  I find my body tense up, the anger/hurt churning in my gut.

The other day, I was out for my morning walk with my sidekick, Ziggy (our silver lab).  We were about half-way through and I realized my palms were sweaty, tightly gripping the leash (which is a waist leash, so I don’t even need to be holding it!).  My chest is tight, my stomach is tight.  I ask myself, “why am I ready for a fight?”  Nothing had happened.

Nothing.

Except a thought I was having… not just having… looping.  It was about an experience that happened 3 decades ago.  One I don’t typically think about.  But today, it popped in my head and I was stuck in a loop.  Looping on an old thought that was making me feel a certain way in the present.

I dropped back and followed my own little routine when I find myself looping.

You can’t stop the loops from starting.  But you can decide how long you run the loops.

Let’s talk about how to stop those pesky loops.  Podcast below.

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Fear Versus Courage

FearVersusCourageI don’t know about you, but I don’t much enjoy feeling fear.  I’d rather it not be a part of my life.

And yet, it is.

Fear is part of our wiring, deep in our DNA and deep in the circuitry of our brains. It keeps us safe — sometimes super-safe.  Which is the problem.

There is a central life coaching question:  “Where do you want to be?”  (Few people seek out coaching because everything is great, they are happy, and life is where they want it to be.)

The next question is “What keeps you from getting there?”  When I dig in with clients, that question often hits against external barriers.  Things the client can’t change.

But dig long enough and dig deep enough, and you hit fear.  Fear is what often keeps us from getting what we want in life, from getting the life we most deeply dream about.

If fear is a fact of life (it is), then fear isn’t really as much in our way as we let it be.  After all, other people (who also have fears) have made it.

What breaks through the fear, to get us to the life we want?

It is not being “fearless.”  That won’t happen… although you can have LESS fear.

Nope.

It is COURAGE.  And courage is not the opposite of fear… it is action in the direction of fear.  Which is what dissipates fear.

Let’s talk about fear… and more important, courage… in this episode of the Thriveology Podcast.

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Book:  Thrive Principles
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How To Handle Tough Days

HowToHandleToughDaysKinda like taxes, tough days are unavoidable.  You may see the tough times coming.  But sometimes, they just roll right over us.  A conversation, a text, a phone call, or an event.  Something hits and the bad time is here.

Some people will say that tough times are a sign that you are “off-course,” not living right, not doing what you “should” be doing.

But guess what?  One cost of living is dealing with tough times.  Illness, accidents, losses, and deaths — they are all a part of life.

You don’t have to like the tough times.  But we do have to get through them.

Which raises the question of how to get through the tough times.

I cover handling tough times in this episode of the Thriveology Podcast.  Listen below.

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Book:  The Immutable Laws of Living

Clean Pain vs. Dirty Pain

CleanDirtyPainAnyone who tells you that you can go through life without getting hurt and feeling pain is either lying or hiding.

Life is rough-and-tumble.  Pain is unavoidable.

But there is a type of pain that we can leave behind.  That is more a result of our own thinking than anything external, any injury either physical or emotional.

Call it “Dirty Pain.”  Which is distinguished from “Clean Pain.”  Clean pain, that is the initial hurt.  When you hit your foot, it hurts.  That is the bodily response to the injury.  When someone says something to you that is mean and spiteful, your feelings are hurt.  That is the emotional pain.  It is initial.

But what if you chastise yourself about your being “clutsy,” or about your “stupid action” that led to that foot injury?  Or what if you made that hurtful comment about you, and not about the person who said it?  What if you kept dwelling about it?

Let me be clear:  it is fine to ask how you might prevent an injury in the future.  It is fine to listen to feedback from others, that might give you some insight into things you need to change.

It’s the next step after that.  When you keep berating yourself.  It’s when you take the next step… you attach to the pain.  Buddhism refers to that as suffering.  You and I can think of it as “Dirty Pain” (a term coined by ACT – a mode of therapy).  It is dirtied by our own mental state — not the cause of the pain.

What do you do about that?  We discuss it in this week’s Thriveology Podcast.  Listen below.

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Embracing Discomfort

EmbraceDiscomfortHave you noticed how we all like to keep things in a narrow band of comfort?  We keep our houses not-too-warm, not-too-cool.  Most homes, all year long, stay in a very narrow band of temperature.

Most of us go to the same restaurants, listen to the same music, hang out with the same friends, and do the same activities.  Every now and then, something new.  And then, back to the comfortable.

But not much growth happens in comfort.

If you want to improve in yoga, you have to stretch a little bit further, hold the position a little bit longer… be uncomfortable.

Discomfort accompanies growth.  Sure, you can be uncomfortable, and it just be that — discomfort.  But if you are growing… if you are changing… there will be discomfort.

If we simply avoid discomfort, we also avoid growth.

Or, we could embrace discomfort.  See it as a sign of growth.  Use it as a potential sign that we are growing.  And accept that when we grow, we will be uncomfortable.

I discuss Embracing Discomfort in this podcast episode.

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