Give and take

Life is a give and take affair, an in and out experience. Sometimes though, you may try to hold on with an iron grip to what you have. Are you good at holding your breath? If so, you naturally know you can’t hold it forever. You breathe in oxygen, but you can’t keep it for very long, can you? In fact, relatively quickly, your blood carbon dioxide level will reach a critical point and you’ll be forced to exhale.

While this probably seems like an elementary and obvious mechanism, this is applicable to more complex examples such as finances and work, relationships and health. Let’s say you are financially sound. It only makes sense that you would want to preserve that stability. It’s a wise decision. However, you know you can’t hold onto every bit of your resources. You have to buy food, pay for services and other expenses. A money flow is part of the equation.
We tend to grab, grip and glom onto what we presently think we have, not fully realizing that it must flow in some way. Giving and receiving is part of the process. Here’s another example. You may have a wonderful relationship with your children or other young people in your care. You want to nurture and protect them within reason, but somehow you know that they will grow up. You can’t keep them to a certain age. But the good news is they may flow back a gift of connecting with you in an adult way later by having dinner together or another event.

Life is never really static nor stagnant. The question becomes: how can you flow better with the shifting sands that continuously take place?

Where in your current life can you loosen your grip? How can you let your relationships, health, career and finances breathe just like in the example of inhalation and exhalation? The more you can acknowledge the inflow and the outflow of any part of life, the more you can access joy, peace and freedom.

Let It RAIN for Results!

What can you do if you find yourself in the throes of unhealthy behavior such as perfectionism, rage or codependency? How can you more skillfully manage your thinking and behavior to obtain better results?

Psychologist and mindfulness teacher, Dr. Tara Brach came up with a shorthand formula to both interrupt and change the target behavior. She suggests the acronym RAIN. So, identify a pattern you strongly wish to transform, and apply her RAIN formula to it.

R-Recognize that it is happening (awareness)

A-Allow the pattern to be there, as it is without indulging it (acceptance)

I-Investigate the underlying reason for the pattern (rational thinking)

N-Nurture with self-compassion

Consider this example. Let’s say you are prone to being argumentative. Perhaps you’ve struggled with this for quite a while. You truly wish to shift away from this pattern because you see the suffering it causes you and other people.

The RAIN approach is undergirded with self-compassion. This is because berating, criticizing yourself won’t serve you in terms of change. In fact, it is likely that that very approach will lock in the negativity you already feel about the long-term habit.

Use positive reinforcement to solidify new responses. In other words, if you reward yourself for your progress, you will naturally want to continue forward.

You will need to be creative in how you reward yourself. One method we enjoy is pressing an easy button. Are you familiar with this device? When you push through a difficult part of the process, you press the easy button. An audible “that was easy” message is activated. This psychologically reframes what you previously thought was so difficult. Other rewards are equally useful.

Reflecting on the RAIN steps gives you power to transform the things you struggle with the most. Reach out to us today for better results!

Breaking Destructive Patterns


Have you found yourself frustrated and unable to break a lifelong harmful pattern? It may be that you find yourself in a negative, unfulfilling relationship or situation. Do you tend to #sabotage yourself in personal or work relationships?

#Beliefs, #coping skills and #behavior patterns become hard-wired in your psyche early in life. There’s an expression in psychology that neurons that fire together, wire together. When a pattern is learned and repeated enough, it unconsciously becomes part of your personality. This is not easily unlearned as you move into adulthood. In fact, it’s fair to say that for many people, they find themselves living in the same atmosphere as adults as they did when they were growing up.

To be clear, they are not trying to recreate unhappy circumstances but somehow, they do. Why would someone do such a thing? Generally, it’s because you repeat what is familiar even if it’s destructive.

By no means is it a hopeless situation. On the contrary, if a person is determined and #highly-motivated to get out of the pain they or others are suffering, it is not impossible at all. guidelines we recommend are:

  • Get clear on how your early life dynamics have directly influenced your current dysfunctional behavior. This is not about parent-bashing. Understanding the why of your behavior and its connection to your current reality is exceedingly helpful.
  • Take responsibility for your own feelings and behaviors. This step is not to make yourself feel bad and cause punishment. This part is key as you are the only one you can control.
  • Set an intention for how you would like to be. What does it look like? This becomes your North Star. You want to orient your internal compass daily to what is a better way of being.
  • Practice, practice, practice.
  • Be compassionate to yourself and others in the process.

Need help with breaking destructive patterns? Email us today at [email protected] or call 404-949-9500 today!

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Remote Working Challenge

Are you or a loved one in a remote workforce? It’s a very different way of working for many corporations, leaders and employees. There’s a vortex of conflicting opinions out there about its benefits and challenges, and the jury is still out. The Netflix CEO says that he sees nothing positive emerging from working remotely while the Walmart CTO reports that his organization and employees are truly thriving in the new world of remote working. Research is showing conflicting data as well. What have you experienced as a person in the workforce?

We believe that there are pros and cons to almost anything. It’s not just cookie cutter, and one size does not fit all. It depends on your industry, your particular workload and work style as well as your individual temperament as to whether you will thrive in this type of environment or not. Different generations tend to have conflicting preferences and perspectives as well. Is it conditioning or wisdom? Time will tell.

The metrics of performance and results will need to change for organizations pursuing remote working. No longer are employees exchanging dollars for hours but instead focusing on results. Measuring the outcomes will call for organizations to revamp how they perceive high performance and lack thereof. Certainly working solo at home requires discipline and dedication. Some personalities and temperaments fare well with this and some don’t.

Some things to consider if you are a remote employee, leader or workplace:

Recognize employee contributions – This is a driver of employee engagement and essential for individual and organizational success.

Foster social interactions – Find the fun, and honor the humanity in your peers and teams.

Encourage dedicated workspaces – Every person needs a sanctuary where they can focus on the work at hand away from the family, pets and other distractions.

Break the Mold

Have you heard the phrase “break the mold?” What comes up for you when you hear that? If someone directs it at you or a loved one, does it conjure positive or negative feelings? Does it help you feel elevated or diminished? Have you ever been inspired to do that?

Depending on the communicator’s perspective and agenda, it can have a different impact for different people. The definition of breaking the mold is “to put an end to a restrictive pattern of events of behavior by doing things in a markedly different way”. Some people admire the behavior of breaking the mold and branching into uncharted territories. Others are more apprehensive. Where do you find yourself? What were you taught growing up? What examples have you witnessed?

When Jamie Kern Lima, author of “Believe It” and founder of IT cosmetics, was told she was not attractive enough to sell makeup to other women based on her weight and appearance, it hurt her deeply as you could imagine. After she bounced back from multiple years of repeated rejections from the industry, she found herself feeling even more determined and resolved to break the mold in the beauty industry.

Eventually, she went on to sell IT cosmetics to L’Oreal for $1.2 billion and became the first female CEO in the company’s history. Her early career path began as a waitress at Denny’s restaurant. She broke the mold. She was a pioneer. She was rejected multiple times by the experts in the beauty industry. As Jamie often says, “You’re not wrong. You’re just the first.” She has since helped many people.

Don’t allow the outside world to convince you that your ideas and vision are wrong. Even if no one else has done it before, don’t believe that it can’t be done. Jamie Kern Lima’s second book, “Worthy,” will be released in February 2024. Consider the young people in your life who need some inspiration and motivation that would benefit from reading both of her books.

Call us today. We’ll support you or your team in breaking the mold!