January 2018 Newsletter
Hello, and a joyous January to you!
Are you too self-critical?
Welcome, or welcome back, to my newsletter.
Today's issue has an article about self-criticism, and how it
really doesn't help to move us forward.
Last month I participated in a coaching call with one of
my expert teachers, where it seemed every one of us had
a different flavor of self-criticism. For one it was that
she had been letting an exercise program go by the wayside
as it got darker in the early mornings. For me, I didn't
feel that I was getting enough done, with all the
pre-holiday interruptions and extra tasks. For another
woman, she was feeling more pain than she thought she
"should" days after a surgery.
Why are we so mean to ourselves? Do we really think this will
motivate us to work harder and do more? Or is this just a bad
habit, maybe picked up from teachers or coaches or parents or
older siblings, who were impatient with us back then? You've heard
the saying that you catch more flies with honey than you do with
vinegar -- kind supportive words go a lot farther than pointing
out what's wrong with someone. And I think that's doubly true
for the words we speak to the most important person in our lives,
Anyone who has raised children or been a teacher knows how
sensitive little ones are to criticism, how it can crush
the spirit. Tell a youngster often enough "You're so stupid!"
and she will start to believe that, and stop trying
to excel. Say "You're so smart (or clever, or bright)!" and
the child will be delighted with himself just as you are,
knowing he's a winner.
If we know this about the way to interact with others, we
ought to be applying this wisdom to ourselves too. Do you
see yourself as a winner? Sure, you've had some defeats
and disappointments, plans that didn't work out, and you've
had some triumphs too. Why not reframe those "failures" as
just learning what doesn't work? The only way not to fail
is to do nothing at all.
In this time of New Year's resolutions, it's tempting to want
to push ourselves to tackle that task we've been avoiding,
whether it be to start (or re-start) an exercise program, or
to clean up our diet, or to stop fighting with our kids or
partner. How about resolving to be nicer to ourself, to catch
that negative self-talk and change it to encouragement? Most of
us really are doing the best we can at the moment, and often
deserve praise for just getting through the day without screaming
at someone or bursting into tears!
My own plan is to make 2018 the year I start acting to myself
in a way I would to a close friend, kind and supportive, paying
attention to what I truly need at the time, not to what I should
be doing to meet some artificial super-human standard. One of
the teachers I loosely follow said a few years ago that if we
just did 75% of what we thought we should, that would be plenty!
The over-achiever in me rebelled at this initially, then when I
thought about it more, it made sense. Take it easy on yourself, and know
you're probably doing more than enough. See that Greater You when
you look in the mirror -- you're moving toward becoming that.
To read about my learning to let go of criticizing myself
about my vision,
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Let me know what you've wondered about concerning energy medicine
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You're helping many other people!
Enjoy the start of your January, and of 2018.
I'll write again in a few weeks. Take care!