Monday, December 3, 2012

Hiding Near You- Finding Your Core

This is a story within a story. It is a story that demonstrates that each of us has what we need to be successful and in control of our lives. It also serves as a reminder of how easily we abandon our truest selves to become dependant upon others for our own happiness and definition of who we are deep inside.

   "I spend my time searching for something, but never find it. The search becomes the quest over time and I lose track of what it is I am looking for. What I seek is the knowledge of WHO I really am; the me I was born to be".

A young girl sits in her dad’s lap, captivated by the story her dad is telling.  The story is about a small boy in ancient times, setting out to find the most important thing of all. He is seeking what his mother wants most. It is the only thing she has been waiting for since he can remember: She is looking for herself.

Girl’s Father: Almost every day, he hears his mother anguish over finding herself.
        “I wish I knew how to find myself again. I would give anything if only I knew how to find the real me.”

On his 6th birthday, the young boy decides to plan a journey to The Beautiful Garden. The Beautiful Garden is a mystical place-a place everyone has experienced but only the wisest of mankind have ever lived. Even knowing this, the boy is determined to set forth in search of this garden where all that is lost is said to be found.

For several weeks, he dreams of his adventure. He collects his belongings, all of the treasures he possesses and plans his route. He speaks to the town elders, seeking their guidance.

“Venture forth towards that which you fear.”, Commands the Chieftain.
“Stop only when you are on the other side of Tbuod, suggests the Head Counsel.
“Use the trust others have placed in you to nourish the trust you have in yourself.” advises the medicine man.
“Count your blessings.” The High Priestess warns.

The boy carefully notes each word of wisdom imparted to him and returns home. As he approaches, he is greeted by the smells of his favorite soup wafting from the kitchen through the door.

He enters the kitchen as his mother finishes setting the soup and one spoon on the table. The boy, puzzled, looks into his mother’s eyes as he asks, “Mother, why only one spoon?”

        “I have done all I can do, son. The rest is too hard.” His mother whispers as she sits beside him with tears in her eyes.

“Mother, the boy says. “I am going on a journey to find what you have lost.”

“What have I lost, son?” she questions.

“I am going to find the part of you which you have sought my whole life. I have spoken to the town elders and have packed my belongings. I leave tomorrow.”

The boy’s mother smiles sadly. She wants to tell him his journey is a folly. Yet when she begins to speak, she sees wonder and imagination in his eyes, hears curiosity in his voice and feels the knowing in his heart. He trusts himself and knows his determination will guide him.
At the end of the story, the little girl asks,
 “Did she find who she was looking for?”

“Yes, honey,” he responds. “She found what she was looking for. It was hiding near her.”

“Was it in the closet or under the bed?” she inquires.

“No, honey. Not in the closet or under the bed. She found it in plain sight. She found her sense of adventure in the determination of her son’s actions. She discovered the curiosity she lost in her son’s voice when he tells her of his search for the Beautiful Garden. And most important of all, she found the part of her that once allowed her to conquer fear, cross the boundaries of doubt and build trust within herself.”

“But where did she find that, daddy?” The girl asked.

“That, he answered, “she found by being grateful for her son’s determination to find something so valuable to her. She nurtured it by appreciating his belief in her. And she paid him back by sharing the best of her self with others.”

“Just like her son did,” the little girl states. “Daddy, who is this woman?”

He explains, “She is the spirit within each of us. She tends to The Beautiful Garden.”

“Daddy, what is the Beautiful Garden?” she puzzles.

“The Beautiful Garden is where we all begin-the core of who we are born to be. We sometimes forget to tend to the Beautiful Garden, just as the woman in the story did. We forget to use our imagination and curiosity every day. We become tired and lose our determination to use the gifts we have been given. When we forget to use and appreciate what we have, our spirit becomes overshadowed by fear, doubt and distrust of ourselves and others. We look outside of ourselves for inspiration, but it is always hiding somewhere near us.”

4 Wisdom Keys:

  • Face Your Fears - Focus on what you want and move through the fear that stands in your way.
  • Overcome doubt - Become curious about what else might be possible.
  • Build trust within yourself - Forgive yourself for past errors and trust you will do better when you know better.
  • Be grateful for EVERYTHING - Accept all that is given you and seek a better understanding through the lessons life brings.

In all ten directions of the Universe, there is only one truth.
When we see clearly, the great teachings are the same. What can ever be lost? What can be attained?
If we attain something, it was there from the beginning of time.
If we lose something, it is hiding somewhere near us. 
Ryokan 1758-1831

For access to a free recording, "What You Are Looking For is Hiding Near You,
please visit: The Journey

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Mastering Your Money Story

Popular opinion indicates that Money is a mythical beast which captivates, mesmerizes, frightens, rewards, controls, enables and confuses. Money haunts us whether we have too much or not enough. Money is blamed for divorce, fighting, stress, losing homes and burdening debt.

In reality, money is a concept that was developed to allow us to trade commodities with unequal values. When we think of money, we think of currency, coins, checks, and bank accounts. All of these represent a value that we place on things we want or provide to others. Money touches everything in our lives these days.

The power that money has in our lives comes from our money story. Paul Clitheroe in his article Smart Money Habits For Kids” (Queensland Times, July 2012) says:
IT'S easy to think your money habits are no one's business but your own. However when you have kids, nothing could be further from the truth.
Children, and especially teenagers, pick up a great deal from their parents' attitudes to money, and the message we send our kids about the way we handle our personal finances can stick with them for life.
Your money story is the accumulation of the excuses you have given for not being able to do things you want to do and the justification for holding yourself back from showing up in a greater way.
For example, in step families it is not unusual to hear one biological parent to “blame” the other for financial conditions in their current relationship. In dissolved relationships there is usually one injured party, someone who feels wronged. And there may be an incident when one party caused pain to the other.
However, when any incident or experience is held on to for 6, 7 or 10 years, it becomes woven into all that goes wrong in the new family; it has become part of the fabric-the story.

Steps to understanding your money story:

Step 1 Whatever your reality may be made up of today, ask yourself these questions:

1. What do I want to change about this problem or situation?

2. What do I believe to be true about it?

3. What would I have to believe in order to move forward?

4. Now, what do I commit to doing to resolve this and change my money story?

Step Two Keep track of what your children say that involves money. How do they react when they ask for money and it is denied? What do they believe they need money for? Are they willing to trade something of value (chores, good deeds, etc.) in order to receive what they ask for?

Step Three Review the thoughts, expressions and comments your children have made concerning money. How do their views mirror yours?

Step Four Identify 3 ideas about money that have come up in your family. Turn each of them into a statement and then test whether it is true or false.
You may wonder how to test whether a thought or habit about money is the truth. Stay tuned! I’ll share some ideas about that in the next article.

Friday, September 7, 2012

The Clutter Effect

Quote: Clutter is a physical manifestation of fear that cripples our ability to grow.  H. G. Chissell

Clutter is a confusing, disorganized state or collection. 

Starting your day in a state of confusion and disorganization causes stress, anxiety and the feeling of being out of control. Many of us start our day in exactly this way without realizing it.

We get out of bed and immediately begin searching for something: our glasses, the box of cereal, cream for the coffee, our car keys, something we are supposed to remember to schedule, to unschedule or maybe somewhere to go. Our first experience of the new day is one of distraction.

Clutter can be physical items, behaviors and emotions or feelings.

If we manage to get up, dressed and out the door with relative ease, we can encounter overwhelm on the road as traffic begins to increase. Some days we can arrive at the office well rested and unaffected by our commute only to be faced with an overflowing inbox of email, accumulated messages on voicemail or a packed schedule for the day.

This is what I call The Clutter Effect…

The Clutter Effect takes root subtly. Left unchecked, it causes a loss of inner peace, a depletion of energy and leaves you with a distorted sense of reality.

If you are feeling smothered by belongings, drained from commitments and unmanageable schedules or operating under stress and experiencing anxiety, you are suffering from The
Clutter Effect!

Taming the Clutter Effect

After a soothing shower and nutritional breakfast, Mary Jo leaves home after checking that she has her cell phone, keys for both car and office, her laptop and her purse. She drives 15 minutes to her office against traffic and arrives early enough to park where she chooses. She climbs the stairs instead of taking the elevator. She puts her belongings down, hangs up her jacket and starts the coffee pot.

Before she can get back to the coffee pot for a cup of coffee, her cell phone rings and the email alert begins its routine beeping. Grabbing her cell phone, she sits at the desk and starts her computer. She pulls up her calendar to schedule an appointment and finds herself overloaded with meetings and appointments. For most of the day she is expected to be on three calls at the same time!

Mary Jo is suffering from the effects of over commitment. She prides herself on keeping a tidy home and being very organized and timely. She doesn’t realize that she hasn’t carried these values/traits/habits over to her calendar. Mary Jo has behavioral clutter she can’t yet see.

“Whether you realize it or not,” says Pam Holland of Mindful Decluttering & Organizing, “all of the activities and objects in your life profoundly affect your happiness, health and productivity. All three forms of clutter weigh you down and hold you back”.

Clutter appears in three forms:

Physical- Objects, belongings, papers, mementos
Emotional- Thoughts, habits, feelings
Behavioral- Schedules, obligations, activities, commitments

Defining your boundaries around time is as important as defining a space, such as your bedroom or office. Equally important is defining rules for dealing with emotional clutter such as the feelings of guilt, regret, avoidance, and over sympathizing. All clutter is a drain on our energy.

What reason do you give for not yet reaching your dreams or accomplishing your goals? Do you willingly accept that things just are as they are, reasoning that this is how life works?

Pam and I know this familiar mantra and have experienced for ourselves how clinging to it prevents joy, depletes energy and stifles personal growth. We see how blocked energy causes our clients to become stuck and then convince themselves that being stuck is at least a familiar place to remain. Yet, our combined 15 years of experience tells us that as clutter accumulates in some form, energy stagnates. And when energy stagnates, more clutter accumulates.

Stagnant energy prevents personal growth. Personal growth is necessary for creating joy, prosperity and abundance for ourselves as well as to be able to share them with others through our interactions with them. For things to be different, we have to approach them from a different perspective.

Facing your clutter means reclaiming your power! Discovering what is cluttering your life and draining your energy gives you more control, increases your energy, and creates more freedom.  Clutter represents what we are most afraid of: our true power to create, influence and make a big impact on our world.

Check out the Clutter Free Lifestyle Preview Event:

Thursday, August 9, 2012

One Key to Stop Bankrupting Your Relationships

Money may not buy love, but fighting about it will bankrupt your relationship.   Michelle Singletary
Money touches every part of our lives from basic necessities to where we live to what job we have to what friends we keep. It isn’t so hard to see that we blame money for these same things!
Our relationship with money has everything to do with how we view our current reality. And our perception of our reality is reflected in the relationships we have with those around us, especially our loved ones.
Issues with money in relationships are the effect of something. They are the effect of your upbringing, your beliefs, your experiences and your choices.
Have you ever fought with your significant other about what you can or cannot afford?
Have you ever told your children or friends that you don’t have the money to do something you (or they) would love to do?
You are causing the conditions under which you are living. How we look at things and make decisions based on that view is the cause of the conditions that result.
I remember having a “discussion” about how my husband and I should use some unexpected income when our kids were younger. My husband wanted to use it to pay bills. I wanted to use it for something fun for the family, like an adventure or something that we had talked about and never acted upon.
I didn’t really care what we did with it; but when my husband began explaining his point of view, the feisty never-felt-heard child inside of me took over. I argued and criticized and blamed. He became the invisible child to avoid a conflict and shut down, gave up and gave in.
Only then did I realize that I had just created my reality. I had control over something I didn’t care about and I hurt our relationship. In order for me to get something out of the exchange, I fought for something for the sake of fighting and lost a measure of trust and respect from my husband.   And, I used money as my excuse!
What we expect and how we behave causes the results we experience in our lives. We are the cause of our own reality.
If your current reality is not everything you want it to be, would you benefit from learning and understanding this key to breaking out of your old money story? You can have what you truly want-all of it-and I can show you how!
If you want to improve your relationship with money, there’s no better time than NOW!  

Friday, August 3, 2012

Money Issues? What’s in Your Relationship …

We all have ideas or beliefs about money. More often, our beliefs about money were created from fear and we accept them as if they were the truth.

Issues around money have little to do with the concept of money.

That’s what I discovered when my husband and I got married. The comments about money we had each heard growing up were guiding our decisions and causing conflicts. After all, both of us can’t be “right” if our beliefs represent opposing views.

The comments, beliefs and ideas we are taught about money are based on a faulty understanding of what money actually is. By discovering the truth about money, you become more empowered in your relationship with it and all that it touches in your life.

Money issues are really just a lack of understanding based in fear and irresponsibility.

Three keys to breaking out of your money story: 

The first key to breaking out of your money story is to face your fears. Decisions made on the basis of “feeling safe or secure” in circumstances where your very life is not being threatened are made out of fear.

Fear indicates that you have power to reclaim from someone or something. The more we rely on something outside of ourselves to resolve what we believe to be money issues, the more fearful or powerless we feel.

I worked with a client who used to say, “I can’t leave this job now! What if I took a new job and got laid off? My partner would get angry.” When I asked her what she was afraid of, she admitted it wasn’t the money but that she was afraid of how changing jobs would change their relationship.

Here’s this client’s realization about claiming her power:

“It’s like owning our desires, honoring ourselves and not allowing what we think or we perceive to be overshadowed by others. It is owning who we are.”
The second key to breaking free from old money beliefs is to understand what caused your current reality. Issues with money in relationships are the effect of something. They are the effect of your upbringing, your beliefs, your experiences and your choices. The same is true for everyone you interact with.

A woman I worked with a few years ago was miserable at her job. Even though she did very well, she no longer loved what she was doing. She kept talking about leaving the job but grew up believing you must remain loyal to “the man who pays you”. But the longer she stayed in that position, the more pressure she felt.

Her daughter had health issues and began to require more constant care. Soon, my client was forced to choose between her daughter and her loyalty. Although her father had been faced with a similar decision and had opted to stay loyal to his employer, she chose her family. She embraced a new reality- one that is more inline with her values and not with her fears.
Life is a gift, and it offers us the privilege, opportunity, and responsibility to give something back by becoming more. Tony Robbins
The third key to breaking out of your money story- the explanations, rationalizations and excuses you give to justify your stand on money issues- is to take responsibility for your role in causing the results you get.

 I spoke with an entrepreneur recently who explained that her current financial circumstances were caused by the failing economy. During our Discovery Conversation, she admitted that her fear kept her from taking the necessary steps to achieve better results.

She had been avoiding the activities which would create those desired results “because of the economy”. When she became more fearful of what would happen if she didn’t trust herself to make decisions based on fact and not fear,  she also discovered that if you don’t yet have what you want in your life, money or otherwise, it is your responsibility to cause it to occur.

Take responsibility for your results and you are back in control.  By bringing your power back into the thoughts you have and the decisions you make, you are claiming responsibility for the results you get.

        Your power to create something in your life is equal to the amount of responsibility you are willing to accept for the things that are in your life. David Neagle

Stayed Tuned for more about money....

Monday, January 23, 2012

Invisible Messages

Ilchi Lee, author of Brain Wave Vibration: Getting Back Into the Rhythm of a Happy, Healthy Life says,

"Whether you know it or not, you produce messages all the time, sending them to yourself and to those around you. Sometimes the messages we send are adopted or modified from other people's messages and sometimes they are our own creation; but in the end it is our decision whether to pass them on to other people in our lives."

You probably can recall a time or two that you said something one of your parents used to say which made you feel small and unappreciated. You may have even thought "I sounded just like so-and-so.

Decide that you are moving in the direction of being a positive influence on others by catching yourself before you say something that is disempowering to family, friends, co-workers or people you encounter in public.

What phrases have you identified that you adopted from parents or other adults earlier in life?

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Step Mom's Prerogative: Changing Your Mindset (All parents benefit)

Here are some key points I'd like to share from my interview with Paula Bisacre of radio show, part of the StepMom's Toolbox on Blogtalk radio.

Keypoints: Changing Your Mindset
  • Change is a process-and not an overnight process
  • Every time you make a change, there are more changes to make.
  • The further you go, the faster you grow.
  • The bulk of your thinking occurs "between your ears". That thinking is controlled by beliefs, some of which are unconscious.
  • The past is a part of who you are but it does not define you.
  • Disappoinment stems from specific expectations-when we define success or happiness by what happens or doesn't happen.
  • What is it that you really want-the end result- in a given situation?
  • Reflect on what is bothering you. What is that annoyance telling you about yourself?
  • The words you say aloud or to yourself are the keys to the results you get.
  • Who you spend time around influences how you see things. Choose carefully.
  • You reap what you sow: understanding, compassion, complaining, comparing and judgements.
  • Approach things with curiosity and not with predictions.
  • Seek a new perspective, consider new ideas and focus toward the future.
  • Too much control stunts everyone's growth.
  • Discuss issues without determining right/wrong. Listen only mode!
  • Children reflect back to you something you need to see in yourself. What is your lesson?
  • Three questions to ask when you are not satisfied (STUCK): what do I want, what do I value, how far away from that am I right now? This raises your awareness.
  • When you are waiting for something to change, change your perspective.

These key points are beneficial to all parents and can positively impact our children.

The interview aired on January 2,2012 and can be found here:Step Mom's Prerogative: Changing Your Mindset

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Influencing Change

Welcome to the portal to the where perspectives grow.

I am your host, Renee Canali, The Mindset Coach. My mission in life is to change your future one thought at a time.

One thought at a time? Are you serious?

Yes. I am serious. I have watched this, done this and experienced this exact thing throughout my life. And what I know is that when you change the perspective from which you see things, the things you are seeing seem to change.

Early in my life I would ponder comments adults around me were making about life:
  • Things are getting tough
  • Kids these days don't (fill in the blank)
  • I really should get a new job, but I need to stay for the retirement
  • It's hard to (fill in the blank)
I was told I was an idealist, a dreamer. I was elated! I didn't realize, thank God, that it was meant in a derogatory way. Those comments allowed me to perceive life the way I wanted to-without limits of socio-economic backgrounds, genetics, or political views. I never understood either/ or thinking.

I could see possibility in everything-like most children do. UNTIL-

Adults, in their desire to save children from the hardships they themselves endured, bestow upon children the gift of FEAR.

You are probably asking, "What the hell is she talking about?"

It is my belief that we absorb fear from those around us. We are taught fear by those who love us the most. We encounter fear in many of our experiences growing up. AND that fear does not originally come from inside ourselves.

As very young children, our parents, guardians, teachers and mentors must protect us from getting hit by cars, falling, endangering ourselves or others. We did not have a frame of reference by which to operate. Thankfully, there were people around us that helped us learn ways to protect ourselves and care for others.

However, in doing so, many adults unknowingly passed on guidance based on their fears. Watch a new mother with an infant learning to walk or crawl. Listen as they gasp at the possibility that the child might fall, bump their head or put something in their mouths. Notice that the child does not respond at first. After several repeated reactions from the mother, the child reacts with fear and starts to cry. They are unconsciously learning that there is something to fear about the activity they are engaged in.

As they grow more curious, parents add admonitions to their reactions a well. "Be Careful!" "You'll get hurt!" "You can't do that!" (Most of the time they already have done THAT).

Soon, those fears that are innocently transmitted become a guideline for future possibilities.

When a young child tries something new and hears, "You can't do that!", they DON'T. They slowly give up trying new things-or they are never happy with the results.

As a parent and grandparent, I see how I taught this to my children and am consciously practicing ways that encourage growth instead of stunting it.

One way I do this is by challenging myself to state things in the positive and not the negative. For example, instead of saying "Don't do that" I may say "Please do this". I focus on the desired outcome instead of focusing on undesirable behaviors or results.

This is a big lesson for adults. We can actually influence others by reaching for something better, more desirable ourselves. Focusing on what you want is the fastest way to getting what you want. If what you get isn't exactly what you wanted, you have experienced less of what you didn't want.