By Sabrina Robin
Gaps exist everywhere in our lives. They exist between our vision of what we want, and the reality of what is – in ourselves, our lives, our loved ones, and the world. In ourselves, it can be a skill we want to master and yet when we apply it we experience mediocrity and failure. Or a dream that we haven’t been able to manifest. With a spouse or friend it could be our vision of how an important conversation will go to resolve a misunderstanding that then goes wrong. In our work, it could be an employee in whom we see great potential who just isn’t stepping up to the plate. And it seems the gaps out there in the world are bigger than ever these days as evidenced by the polarity we see on important issues in the news. Gaps can be painful. Our human lives are full of them. The discomfort can challenge and scare us, or inspire us to action and positive change. Sometimes they do both.
I used to ask why all the gaps and how can I fix or change them so they all go away? Then it occurred to me that there are much more empowering questions to ask….
What would it be like to embrace the gap?
What is available there? What would it take to bridge it? Who would I become if I embarked on that journey? As I started to ask those questions and led my clients to look for the answers, I realized that it’s in embracing the gap that we find the treasure – learning, new possibility, creativity, imagination, mystery, courage, rectification, connection and transformation.
Embracing the gap can be scary and uncomfortable. If we can do it with courage and curiosity, learning and transformation can occur. So when you feel that discomfort or longing in the gap, don’t be tempted to cover up the feelings with overworking, withdrawing or denial…embrace them instead.
If you want an experienced guide for the journey, hire a good coach. It’s what we do best. And remember, life isn’t just about closing the gap, it’s about who we become in the process.
Contact me for a complimentary sample session and start your journey of transformation.
Traditionally January is the month for New Year’s Resolutions and often by the time the month has ended, they have been set aside or forgotten. This can create a subtle hit to one’s self-trust and self-esteem and a ripple of self-recrimination. As a coach, a good portion of my work with clients is around setting goals and intentions, and processing the resulting successes and failures along the way. So how does one successfully set and achieve goals?
Here are some steps and tips to follow:
- Be clear about why the goal matters and how you will feel when you achieve it.
- Create a clear vision of the outcome.
- These first two steps are the most important. Not only do you want to make sure you’re setting this goal for the right reasons, with these steps you create the foundation, clarity and energy for the steps that follow.
- Stay connected to the emotion and enthusiasm behind the goal to fuel your actions.
- Fully commit and align your heart, mind and will behind the goal.
– Being half-hearted about your goal, allowing negative self-talk, and a lack of willpower will all undermine your success.
- Make it specific, measurable, and positively stated.
– For example: I weigh XX pounds by March 1st.
- Outline a plan for success and break it down into achievable steps.
- Be accountable. Write your goals down, keep them in front of you on a daily basis, and track your progress.
- Make it fun and celebrate the successes.
- Gather the learning objectively when you fail and either recommit or change your goal based on your learning.
Each success will strengthen your self-trust and self-esteem. Perspective and a positive mind set are important. If you fail it doesn’t mean you are a failure. Any time you fail it is an opportunity for learning and growth. And sometimes who you become in the process of going for the goal is more important than achieving it.
Having a coach who will hold you accountable, champion you, help you through the challenges, and point you to the learning on the journey can make all the difference. Contact me for a complimentary sample session to kick off your goal setting journey to success.
The holidays are a time cross-culturally for love, hope, renewal, generosity and celebration. Through the expression of these values, we are reminded of the best in ourselves and others, and the difference that we can make through kind and loving gestures. I hope you have been blessed by both the giving and receiving of love and generosity with friends and family this holiday season and that renewed hope has made a home in your heart that will shape your days throughout the coming year.
Thanksgiving is just around the corner and it’s a favorite holiday. It’s core premise of gratitude for all our blessings and the yearly tradition of friends and family sharing good food around a table is comforting and heart-warming. There’s the enjoyment of the traditional dishes, new recipes, the memories of Thanksgivings past, and the making of new memories around the table this year. If we take the opportunity to look deeper, the holiday points us to a cross-cultural perennial wisdom of daily thanksgiving or gratitude which can transform every area of our lives.
Gratitude opens the heart of the giver and receiver. Its practices are part of all cultures and religions around the world, including gift giving, verbal acknowledgement, prayer, offering food, thank you notes, and celebratory traditions such as anniversaries and birthdays. What wisdom and history have shown us is that not only is gratitude transformative, it’s essential. In the words of Angeles Arrien, from her book, Living in Gratitude, “…the expression of gratitude continues to be the glue that consistently holds society and relationships together..(it) is essential to humankind’s sustainability and survival. Gratitude’s stabilizing and healing effects, which have been researched from multiple standpoints – cultural, psychological, physical, spiritual, even financial – have made it abundantly clear that the benefits of living a grateful life are irrefutable.”
So, a daily gratitude practice is both practical and essential medicine in the current climate of disruption, judgement, and breakdown of human decency that we read and see in the news on a daily basis. It heals the division, separation and despair we can feel both inside and outside ourselves.
One of my favorite gratitude practices is my gratitude jar. At the end of the day, I write down something I’m grateful for on a colored piece of paper – an unexpected gift, experience I had or a person I connected with – and I put it in my glass jar. It sits on my desk as a daily reminder of the good in my life. As the year goes by, the jar fills up and every time I look at it, I can feel my heart smile. It reminds me of the good, true and beautiful that is present daily in my life.
Create your own daily practice of gratitude. A good resource for ideas and inspiration is Brother David Steindl-Rast’s website, gratefulness.org.
Enjoy your Thanksgiving holiday. Take the opportunity to look past the challenging people and experiences you may encounter. Acknowledge a loved one for the difference they make in your life and be open to the unexpected blessings that day and every day. It will change your life and the lives of those around you for the better.
Sabrina Roblin is an experienced executive, mentor, trainer, and coach who “walks a spiritual path with practical feet”, and incorporates perennial wisdom in her practice. She has worked for organizations that include Wells Fargo Bank, Broderbund Software, and The Coaches Training Institute. Contact her for coaching. A sample session is complementary.
Everyone reading this blog has been impacted either directly or indirectly (through friends, family members and the media) by the series of disasters in the last month. I know I have, which is why I decided to write about this topic.
The events have been stunning. And I mean that literally. The definition of stun is: to make senseless, to be overcome especially with paralyzing astonishment or disbelief. Although we are naturally resilient, highly stressful and traumatic experiences can impact the human nervous system in similar ways. Being stunned is one of the them.
In addition to the symptom of feeling stunned, numb or disconnected, other symptoms include feeling depressed, or experiencing high anxiety and unable to rest or sleep. If you or someone you know is experiencing any of these symptoms know that it’s normal under the circumstances. And it’s not a time for lots of words, it’s a time for presence and connection.
Here are some very simple things that you can do to help yourself or someone else with these symptoms right now, any time, anywhere:
- Drink a glass of water
- Go for a walk
- Notice the temperature of the air
- Look around and pay attention to anything that catches your eye
- Touch a surface that interests you and notice if it’s hard, rough, cool, etc.
- Notice the sounds around you
- With someone you know, share hugs, hold hands
- Snuggle up with a loved one
- If you have access to it, get in the water – in a bathtub, shower, river or lake
In time, as the initial impact of events wears off, there will be lots to talk about, re-evaluate and rebuild. My heart goes out to all those who have lost friends, family, homes, pets and neighborhoods. To all those who who have lost access to communication, food, clean water and shelter. Keep this list handy, and keep close to each other and what you hold most dear.
Sabrina Roblin is an experienced executive, mentor, trainer, and coach. She has worked for organizations that include Wells Fargo Bank, Broderbund Software, and The Coaches Training Institute. Contact her for coaching.