Do we really listen to one another?

Do we really listen to one another?

Isn’t it true that – at some stage – we are all guilty of not listening? We have all experienced talking to someone who is clearly not listening, even when they are looking directly at us. Do we tune out? We attempt to multi-task between “listening”, texting or watching TV; that inevitably means that we are not listening when others are talking to us.

Does this sound familiar?

The Art of Listening is, in fact, a skill. That is actually good news, because it means that we can learn to listen – and be present – when the person is talking to us. And, it may be useful to know some of the reasons why we don’t listen. Here are few of the more common ones:

  • the person you are speaking to would rather do the talking – their need is greater right now;
  • Distraction. Imagine this: we can talk at 200-250 words per minute but think at 300-350. It is very easy then, when we are talking, for the other person to get distracted by their own thoughts, rehearsing in their mind what they want to say, and waiting for a gap in the conversation to get their point across;
  • the topic simply does not interest them; or
  • an emotional response could be triggered in them around the topic and they are lost in their own thoughts, or attempting to control their reaction towards you.

Do any of these ring true for you? Would you like to learn to be more present in a situation and really listen – and read when others aren’t – and how to manage that for yourself?

We have one mouth and two ears; therefore the gold is in listening twice as much as we speak.

Kind regards,

Marléne.

What if your fairy godmother were whispering to you from the future?

What if your fairy godmother were whispering to you from the future?

And what if the fairy godmother whispering to you, that voice you are hearing, was actually your wisest, smartest version of yourself?

Maybe, she would be saying, this National Woman’s month:

“Stop treating yourself as an afterthought. Eat delicious food, walk in the sunshine, jump in the ocean. Speak the truth you are carrying in your heart like a hidden treasure. Be silly, be kind, be weird. There is no time for anything else.”

And gentlemen, if the voice is coming to you, you may hear it reminding you to respect the women in your life because:

“You can feel her innocence in the form of a daughter, her care in the form of a sister. You can feel her warmth in the form of a friend and her passion in the form of a beloved. You can feel her dedication in the form of a wife, her divinity in the form of a mother and her blessing in the form of a grandmother.”

Ladies, stand up, today and every day as you speak your truth. Gentlemen, stand alongside the ladies in your life and allow them to speak their truth.

Kind regards,

Marléne.

A picture paints a thousand words

A picture paints a thousand words

Imagine a blank canvas. Create a bird’s eye view of what your life looks like right now. Does it reflect all of the “have to’s” and not so much of the “want to’s”? What if you had the freedom to paint a life of passion and excitement?!

Does that seem impossible and out of reach? What if your reality could change?

How do you get there? Let me help you explore the journey, to reach and acknowledge that you could be living a life filled with excitement and joy, and doing the things you are passionate about while still paying the bills…

If you would like to paint a different picture, we can work through the obstacles together to take the steps to live in that picture actively, daily. Speak to me, then, if this is where you find yourself now and, together, we can co-create a way to remove those obstacles.

Kind regards,

Marléne

Playing with Fire: my thoughts on burnout in this month’s Your Family Magazine.

Playing with Fire: my thoughts on burnout in this month’s Your Family Magazine.

I recently participated in an article in the June 2018 Your Family Magazine, with regards to Burnout and the contributing factors.

Here is an excerpt:

“According to the American Institute of Stress, up to 77% of people regularly experience physical symptoms of stress, with 73% regularly experiencing psychological symptoms. It’s no wonder modern society feels like this – we’re continually pushed to excel in our careers and have Pinterest-worthy family and home lives while juggling a multitude of tasks and chores.

So where does this leave most people? Burnout, the physical and/or mental collapse caused by overwork or stress, is plaguing society, leaving men and women feeling constantly fatigued, overwhelmed, exhausted (both emotionally and physically), and depressed.

Life’s problems, which are usually easily navigated, suddenly become insurmountable, everything looks bleak, and it’s difficult to find the energy to care for or help yourself. Manifestations that all contribute to the high amount of anxiety and depressive disorders are reported to be on the rise. While symptoms may be similar to those experienced during stressful situations, burnout occurs over a longer period of time and may culminate in a health disaster such as a panic attack or suicidal thoughts.”

Are you feeling constantly fatigued, overwhelmed, exhausted (both emotionally and physically) or depressed? Contact me to find about how to find sustained relief by learning to release tension and change limiting beliefs, so as to empower you to re-evaluate your priorities and adjust your life accordingly. Together, we co-create your healing journey.

The article is attached for your info.

Lots of love,

Marléne.

If the first thing you do every morning is eat a live frog…

If the first thing you do every morning is eat a live frog…

“If the first thing you do every morning is eat a live frog, nothing worse can happen to you that day”, wrote Mark Twain. In terms of our day-to-day lives, you can easily relate that frog to the most difficult item on your to-do list. Eating up that difficult – or unpleasant – item should be done first, this saying is seeming to tell us.

Avoiding a task that needs to be accomplished, or leaving a task until the “last minute” and letting panic drive it through, is called procrastination. This can take hold of any area of your life, not just a task on your daily to-do list. It may include putting off cleaning the stove, repairing a leaky roof, seeing a doctor or a dentist. You may wish to delay making a phone call that you believe will be unpleasant or breaching a stressful issue with a partner.

More importantly, for us, is this question: where does procrastination come from? What are the root causes and what can we do about it? I will be unpacking this issue this month but, if you would like to chat about your procrastination issues now, simply give me a call.

How often do you wake up feeling excited?

How often do you wake up feeling excited?

This morning I woke up excited for no reason at all. There is nothing special planned. It is not a special day. It is a normal Monday with a normal diary and normal things to do. I woke up excited, excited for what the day is going to bring. I can honestly say that I have not felt this way in years, if ever. Just excited for no rhyme or reason.

I have found a modality, QEC, which through a series of sessions over the last three months has enabled me to do that. Those benefits and more are available to you too. Contact me to set up your first session.

Silence in a world of noise (Part Two): vulnerability is not weakness.

Silence in a world of noise (Part Two): vulnerability is not weakness.

“I define vulnerability”, says Brené Brown, “as emotional risk, exposure, uncertainty.”

Vulnerability, says Dr. Brown, is the birthplace of innovation, creativity, and change. To create is to make something that hasn’t been there before and therein lies the vulnerability…

To really understand, to really appreciate the relationship between vulnerability and courage, to move forward to make changes and be creative, we have to talk about shame.

Shame is a focus on your inner self as a result of a self-limiting belief you formed – at a given moment in time – during your lifetime. Guilt, on the other hand, is an emotion felt and stored, based on our behaviour in a particular event.

Guilt says: “I did something bad.” Shame says: “I am bad.”

Shame is our inner voice, stopping us from doing what we want to do and being who we want to be: “I am not……………”

I have a simple process in my toolbox called QEC which is a great way to change these beliefs we have about ourselves.

See what your responses are to the following questions or statements:

Where are my beliefs holding me back? When I am forced to step out of my comfort zone, to a place that I envisage as my worst nightmare, how do I react to it? What strategies have I developed? Do I run, take substances, isolate myself, call in sick, avoid it, suggest someone else for the task or justify and rationalise? When that huge fear steps in, what happens?

What would you prefer that picture to look like if you had a magic wand?

Perhaps you are in freeze mode. You stop doing the thing you were going to do. You stop that project, that creation and that change, because you either believe you’re not good enough or you don’t think you deserve it. You limit yourself, at that point and at that time, sadly perhaps forever.

Let’s assist you to get to the point that you are able to step up in your own story at any given opportunity without the self-critic. Call me to make an appointment for an intro session. And what’s more, if you respond to this newsletter before 30 April 2018, you will receive a 15% discount for a two hour session.

Kindest regards,

Marléne

Silence in a world of noise – Part 1

Silence in a world of noise – Part 1

C.S. Lewis, in his book series The Cosmic Trilogy, refers to Earth as The Silent Planet. We who live here know otherwise.

This is a world of noise. Even when we think that we are in a place of silence and quiet, we deceive ourselves. We spend our lives being dictated to by outside stimuli: a TV left on in an adjoining room, a cell-phone demanding attention as the ‘ping’ announces another incoming message, music coming from a storefront you’ve just passed by. You don’t even realise that you can hear that 50-cycle hum in your walls – you only notice it when the power goes out and your house takes on a new kind of silence. Distant dogs barking, the squeal of tyres and a far-off police siren…we block most of this out because our brains wouldn’t handle the strain if we didn’t. Even the constant bombardment by other peoples’ problems are noise.

It was in the midst of all this that I recently took part in a Vipassana Meditation Course. I absolutely cannot tell you about this course, as it is something that you need to experience for yourself. What I can tell you is that we had to observe noble silence for a total of ten days. No external stimuli, in the form of electronics, is present. Those ten days are about silence, silence from the outside world and, in that silence, I learnt some things.

I realised that we so often talk for the sake of talking. I learnt that being silent meant that I was able to listen to myself, to ME, and I learnt to clearly hear what was okay for me and what was not. I learned about the importance of not following the pack, but that I could lead my own pack from within myself.

I know, and you know, that there is very little that we can do about the noise around us. But we can do something about how we respond to it and how we let it influence us. As Dr. Bruce Lipton said:

“Your perception of any given thing, at any given moment, can influence the brain chemistry which, in turn, affects the environment where your cells reside and controls their fate.”

The thoughts and beliefs that we carry around in our minds are so powerful in the construction of our lives – but often we simply cannot hear them, amidst the noise and the chaos. That alone is reason enough to mould those thoughts and beliefs into positive, ecological thoughts.

If you have tried to do this and realised what a long, ongoing battle it is – then call me for a session. Together, we can chat about a technique that really works to re-wire the neurons, so that the ones that fire together are the very ones that are positive.

We shall talk a little bit more about this process, and about how to find silence amongst the noise, in Part Two of this series, next month.

Maybe a truly Silent Planet is a matter of choice.

Kindest regards,

Marléne

There is only one you and you’ve only got one today. One now. Tomorrow it’s gone.

There is only one you and you’ve only got one today. One now. Tomorrow it’s gone.

“You are either moving forwards or you’re going backwards – you don’t stay the same. We are not human “beings”, we are human “becomings”. We are becoming something.”

So opens a video I saw the other day, while gathering my thoughts for this coming year. The video was posted on YouTube, by Be Inspired and, with 1.4 million subscribers and 725 806 views at the time I watched it, it is obvious that I am not the only one contemplating where I am and where I am going this year.

It is best to let the video speak for itself and, to do so, here are just some of the many thoughts that pepper its 11:11 duration. You will quickly understand why it stood out for me.

“There is only one you and you’ve only got one today. One now. Tomorrow it’s gone. Tomorrow it’s a different day. People spend their whole lives planning on living their dreams. But you see, you gotta take action…you gotta attack the day…

…what’s something that you’ve done recently, in the name of growth, where you are comfortable being uncomfortable? If your answer is “I don’t know”, that is a sign that you should be working on something. You’ve always got to be growing or else you’re going backwards. You’ve got to move towards your goals today. You’ve got to get up every day and say to yourself – every morning – I will do today what others don’t, so I will have tomorrow what others won’t…

…failure is a part of the learning process. What’s the risk of failure? What, that you would be embarrassed, shamed or ridiculed? How do you distinguish failure from learning? In your whole life, failure implies that you stopped, that the game stops…that learning is part of the ‘moving forward’, that is what the process is like: fail, learn, move forward and constantly do that because you’re cutting-edge, you’re going where people haven’t been before… that’s a different approach to life, a different way of being…”

And, finally:

“…doing something, making it real, so right now give up on those weird mental mechanisms that make you actually want to fight for the things that are impossible, to get people to believe in it, to get people to understand why you’ve chosen to stand still.

Instead of that, convince yourself that you should be moving: go, do what you know you are destined to do.”

Again, the question I ask, just as it was asked in the video: what’s something that you’ve done recently, in the name of growth, where you are comfortable being uncomfortable?

Think on that, and then watch the whole video, here.

Kindest regards,

Marléne

What are you reflecting on as we near the end of the year?

What are you reflecting on as we near the end of the year?

“No man is an island,” wrote John Donne, “Entire of itself. Every man is a piece of the continent, A part of the main”.

And this is certainly true, even today, many years after those lines were first penned. We are part of a whole, we exist within that whole and what we do in and of ourselves may impact that whole.

Still, there comes a time in everyone’s life when retreating to our own “island” is what is needed. We need to spend the time to reflect on our own journey and on our own path. As another year draws to a close, many of us find ourselves reflecting on the year that has been, the day that is now, and the time that is to come.

I have journeyed far and wide this year, not just with you, but also within myself. Here are some of the things that I have learned. I wonder if, perhaps, you feel the same way and can find some clarity in these musings, as you find the time to retreat to your own island, for a bit, to learn and to grow.

The biggest learning I have had this year is to listen, intently, without judgement. I have learned that there is no need to talk back. Just as I have the need to be heard, I have learned to respect that others do too, to become more aware of others and what they may be wanting to say.

I have also learned to listen to myself, in the small moments. I have learned to stop and listen to my mind and to my body, becoming aware of where the disconnect is, noticing that if I reconnect to that part of me that is not in sync that I can integrate it and become whole again.

I have learned that it is okay to be me. I have wounds and scars that are healing daily and I know that there are more to come, in the future. I have learned that in dealing with that it helps to be in a place where I can find myself, right now, as that is just where I need to be. Not in the past and not in the future. Just in the now.

And because I am not an island, I know that every person I have come across this year, every client who has opened up vulnerabilities in their own process and their own path in order to heal, has taught me courage and for that I am always humbled in their presence.

Most of all, I have learned gratitude and appreciation for every moment that has showed up and for every lesson that I have learned.

That is my wish for you.

Kindest regards,

Marléne