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Monthly Archives: September 2009

Why Aren’t We Taking Action to Get the Help We Need?

Today, I was chatting with my friend and colleague Beth Leas who runs a fabulous holistic health care center in CT called the Total Life Care Center


In her work and her business, she supports hundreds of other practitoners to find new ways to network, build their businesses, expand their reach, and launch new endeavors through powerful marketing and community-building.


We were discussing what we’ve both observed in spades this year – that so many people who need and want help to create their own breakthrough in their lives and work, simply aren’t reaching out or stepping up to get it. 


We speculated all the potential factors behind this trend (there are many!), and we also brainstormed the root cause of this inertia and paralysis.  As we did, something wild came to my mind.

Here’s my thinking:


1) Thousands of people need help today to build their businesses, make life and career change, make more money, find true success and fulfillment, get healthy, and figure out a new path that works for them.


2) People are talking to each other more extensively now than ever before in history, sharing their views more openly – through blogs and social media, for instance.


3) Often, when we talk about our problems to others, we “feel” better for the moment, as it relieves our tremendous anxiety to share our worries and challenges.   This momentary relief, however, can actually rob us of the real impetus necessary to make true change in our lives and work.  We feel better for the minute by talking, and it lulls us to a calmer state, only to wake up in the same lousy dream we’ve been having for years.


4) Another potential issue (seemingly the opposite of point #3) – people and their businesses and professional performance are so visible these days through social media, websites, etc., that they’re more afraid to be truly authentic – to tell it like it is, and reveal their vulnerabilities and problems for fear it will reflect poorly on them.


Conclusion: Blogging, social media and the digital movement are bad (JUST KIDDING)!  Blogging and social media aren’t bad.  What is bad, however, is that thousands of people who need help aren’t reaching out to get it.  They’re staying stuck, despairing and hopeless because they’re trying to solve their problems themselves without getting help or an outside perspective. 


Einstein said that we can’t solve a problem on the same level of consciousness that created it.  I believe this with all my heart.  In isolation by ourselves, stuck inside our limited minds, we fail to see that shiny new possibilities, opportunities, and miracles are just one small step away. 


That key step is reaching out to get help.


Question of the week: Why do you think people don’t reach out to get help when they truly need it most?  And what makes you finally say, “Enough!! I need help, and now, and I’m going to get it!” 


I’d love to hear your thoughts and insights.  Thank you for sharing.


Here’s to many happy breakthroughs,

The Real Deal with Women Today

As so much national research is revealing, women are sadder and sicker than ever before, and more so in midlife than in other times of their lives. 


Here’s recent Huffington Post piece about the sad and shocking truth about women.


There’s speculation abounding about why, but no real answers.  Further, with men still being named the research experts on women (so irksome!), the headway is slow in uncovering the real truth.


Based on my seven years of research with thousands of women nationwide, there are seven hidden reasons why women are struggling deeply today, and failing to find success, health, joy, or purpose:


1)       An Ill-Fitted Career Model: The current competitive career model simply doesn’t fit women


2)       An Extreme Overload: The current gender roles don’t work – women are still doing the vast majority of domestic responsibility even when they work or are the primary breadwinners


3)       “Who can I look up to?”  There are very few female role models – from the past or present — of successful, happy, powerful and healthy women who work and raise a family


4)       “I’m not supposed to!”  Women are culturally trained NOT to do the things required of them to lead happy, healthy, powerful lives (including: speaking up, feeling confident and powerful, displaying self-esteem and leadership, knowing what you want and having an intensive focus in getting it, putting yourself first, etc.)


5)       “What do I choose?” Women are paralyzed by all the options in front of them (children, work, domestic responsibilities, rising to high ranks, working out of the home or in, having their own business vs. corporate job, etc).


6)       “I’m ashamed.” – Women feel guilt and shame about where they are and what they feel today, and about pursuing steps that will help them gain power and self-actualization


7)       Women Are Tough on Women – Women are very hard on themselves and other women — critical and punishing in their actions and beliefs — especially to other women.  Why?  Because they’re struggling and have been for years, and people who are in pain and struggling are not generous and giving.


All of these obstacles hit women hard.  Men do not face these crises in the same ways. 


Wake up world!!  Women are radically different from men and that’s a good thing!  They differ in their values, priorities, dreams, styles, visions, but they’re told somehow that it’s not ok to be different.  Women are struggling hard, but ashamed of their differences, and continually hide or deny their suffering.


The time is now!  Let’s help women step up to what they truly want, to create a breakthrough in how they live and work.  For this to happen, women must accept who they are authentically, power up and step up to get what they want, and stop making excuses.


It’s time for women to give themselves permission to choose the life of their dreams, and get 3000% committed to having it!


Please reach out today (crisis is the perfect time to reinvent) if you need a breakthrough in your life.  Take advantage of my FREE 30-minute coaching strategy call to help you 1) gain clarity on what you want, 2) understand what’s holding you back, 3) create a powerful plan to achieve your goals. 


Every day you don’t move toward breakthrough, is a day that’s stolen from your life.  What are you waiting for?


A Fine Line Between Failure and Success

When we’re facing what feel like insurmountable challenges in our work or life, it’s vitally important to go back to basics – to purify, shift what isn’t working, re-focus, and commit 3000% to what you care about achieving.


In running my own small business through extreme times of hardship and recession, and helping others get what they want in their careers, I’ve returned to basics myself, and reconnected with the three essential ingredients that lead to success. They’re powerful and they work.


Without these, you might find success but it’ll be a far bumpier ride with some agonizing detours. Here’s what’s needed to reinvent your life and career, and also to launch a new business endeavor successfully:


Intensive Focus

Someone recently asked me, “What are you – a coach, author, writer, blogger, speaker, workshop leader…what?!” The question was meant to remind me of my need to focus intently on the area that I most want to grow – for me, that’s my one-on-one coaching practice. Sure, we can do several important things at once. However, spreading ourselves too thin too often creates a dilution effect in our strength, time, and ability to build what we care about most. Figure out what you want most, and focus intensively with passion and power on that for several months, and watch what happens.



Generating Something from Nothing

In intensely challenging times like these, all around us we see despair, confusion and a lack of hope and energy. It’s contagious. We also see businesses drying up before our eyes. It’s scary indeed. But success comes from being your own source of positive energy, from finding a way to internally generate your own authentic enthusiasm, energy, and excitement about what you do, even when outside forces are pushing against you.


My young son came home last night and told me that his teacher asked the students this year to “be the change you want to see” (Gandhi’s beautiful request to the world). There’s such a keen nugget of truth in that for all of us – if we want success to come to us, we must first be success — embody and live the principles of the success you long for — and that will open the door to success. Energy attracts like energy.



Undying Commitment

To be successful in life and work, it takes commitment that doesn’t wane. It takes believing that you can create movement in your life and business, even when the waters are still and the 3D world is giving you evidence that you’re not going to make it to your destination.


But that doesn’t mean we should continue blindly, crashing into the rocks without modifying our course. It means that you know when you need help, and you ask for it before it’s too late. Commit yourself without doubt, without reservation, but do what’s required and be flexible. Realize that you have vulnerabilities and gaps in knowledge and ability, and work to fill them. Believe in yourself, get the outside help you need as soon as you need it, and keep growing and learning.


The fine line between success and failure is simply this – find a way to be success precisely when outside success is eluding you.


Question of the week: What do you do in times of turmoil to generate internal energy, enthusiasm, and light, just when the lights around you have gone out?

Wishing you many happy breakthroughs,


Being Real in Times of Turmoil

I had a fascinating call last night from a local woman in need of some help.  She had heard of me in the community, and was reading my book Breakdown, Breakthrough and found it resonated with her, so she reached out for some coaching insights about her current situation, which is very dire.


Our conversation brought something to light which I’m compelled to address now, because it’s vitally important to me to be authentic and real in my work, while at the same time offering help, comfort, and hope to people who are suffering intensely right now.


This woman indicated to me that in some way, she was nervous to call me, afraid I wouldn’t understand her, or accept her, because of what she’s going through.  She is feeling very lost and alone right now, and she said she felt intimidated because she viewed me as a woman who’d accomplished so much, one who doesn’t struggle, and as one who knows exactly what my passion is, and is “powerful”  in living that passion. 


This one-sided perception, while highly complimentary, is distressing to me, because it acknowledges only one side of me and my life – the light-filled side.  It disregards the shadow side, the dimension of me that is feeling burdened, confused, and hopeless like most everyone else in the country today.  I struggle in these very hard financial times and in my life, exactly as others do around me.  My business has taken a huge hit in the economic downturn, and I’ve been disheartened by the external view that life and career coaching and breakthrough work for women are endeavors only for the “good” and prosperous times, not for times when we can’t pay our bills.


When folks look at my website, programs and offerings, many see something that isn’t there – they see someone who only experiences success and power – one who, after some problems and challenges in the corporate world, somehow easily and seamlessly found a way to reinvent, and did it to great success.  What they don’t see (or don’t want to see) are all my flaws, bumps, blocks, and pitfalls– the challenges (in my personality, approach, thinking, and worldview) that created (and still do bring about) crushing and demoralizing obstacles for me.  They see in me someone who is invincible, who knew what she wanted and got it. 


For the record, it wasn’t, and isn’t, like that – seamless, easy, straightforward.  It’s the opposite.  For years, I had no idea what I wanted to do in my life, and spent thousands of wasted, unhappy hours feeling lost and confused – and feeling ashamed and embarrassed that, despite my “outward” success, I was breaking down.  Now that I do know who I want to be and what I want to do in the world, the challenge is in doing that successfully.


What’s important for me to share right now is my vulnerable, frightened side – the shadow side of me that works day and night to create in the 3-dimensional world what I need and long to do.  I’m clawing through these times like everyone else – to pay my bills, to build a thriving business, to remain a source of light and hope for my family, and to provide uplifting help needed now more than ever – while still allowing myself the occasional time to “give in” and hang my head in my hands over the challenges I face.


So there it is – an authentic, real look at the inner workings of a formerly miserable corporate professional turned passionate life and career coach – potentially supremely happy, but in these times, doing everything in her power to keep the faith and to believe actively what her heart tells her is the truth: that each of us will weather these tumultuous times and find ourselves on the other side some day, with greater strength, courage, and wisdom than we ever thought possible. 


Here’s to keeping it real.


What do you do each day to “keep the faith” and keep it real in your life and work?  I’d love to hear.  Thank you for sharing.

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