Archive for Emotional Mastery

Jul
27

Why is my income not growing?

Posted by: | Comments (0)

That reason is NOT what you think–it’s not “the economy” or your level of education. The real reason why money is the way it is in your life is your money blueprint. Your money blueprint is made up of the automatic or conditioned responses that come up when you are thinking about money, or dealing with it. It also includes thoughts, beliefs and emotions around money, wealth, success, self-worth and receiving good things.

Most of this programming is fear based and negative. It comes from our primary drive to survive, to stay alive. This programming keeps us focused on avoiding danger. It doesn’t support us in many of the skills we need to build a business or grow our money, because it stops us from taking any risks AND often leads to money avoidance—not looking at anything that could be scary or unfamiliar, including looking honestly at our finances. The fear programming can also create a stress response-and we go into fight, flight or freeze when anything seems to go wrong.

The solution is to bring the programming into awareness—shining the light on it. Then we clear these old limiting programs and create new programming that makes you feel powerful and helps you stay in positive action. Sounds good right? How do we get started?

1. Shine a light into the subconscious—your critical first step. As a Tapping into Wealth coach I have some very specific processes for doing this. Working on your own, start by looking at your money situation. Look at your income—write it down on a piece of paper. Is it enough? If not..

What beliefs or emotions would lead to this kind of financial situation?
Example: You have a really great business idea, but you keep attracting business partners or employees who don’t help, or who drain you. Some possible beliefs could be “I can’t trust anyone” or “I have to do it all myself” or “I am not supported”

2. This can be tricky to find since it’s buried in the subconscious. That’s where a coach really comes in handy!

3. If your pattern is one step forward and two steps back, or it feels like there is an invisible limit on your success and income, look for inner conflicts that need to be eliminated.

Sometimes our desires conflict with our subconscious, survival programming. Say you set a goal to double your income, but your subconscious belief is “If I make that much money my family or friends will have a problem. They’ll be jealous, threatened, critical, or want my money”. When you have a conflict like this, guess who wins? Your subconscious fears will, almost always.

However you do it, it’s critical to shine the light, and replace the old subconscious programming that created your current finances. Otherwise it’ll be really really hard to change your money situation, since it’s the subconscious that is running the show.

Please continue to read this ongoing blog series to learn more and start changing your money blueprint. The next post focuses on the first layer of the money blueprint—the verbal programming you received around money, wealth and success. Have fun exploring your blueprint!

Make sure to join me for Tapped into Wealth Tuesdays. (Next one is July 28 and then we resume on 8/11).
Read More→

Jul
12

Perfection’s Hidden Cost

Posted by: | Comments (0)

Hidden Costs of Perfectionism

What happens when you are trying to get things perfect? What happens when you put off an important decision because you need to be sure it’s the right one?

I’ve been blogging about the Hidden Gifts of perfectionism and today I want to talk about the hidden costs. This “hidden” but truly expensive problem bugs me so much (and has haunted me personally) which is why I’m offering the 30 Days to Retrain Your Brain for Success challenge, which begins on Thursday the 16th.

There are both time and dollar costs, besides the unnecessary stress of extra work, trying to attain perfection or get it “just right”. You also undermine your own self-confidence because you are focused on what needs improvement, NOT on what’s already good, so you are in fault-finding mode. You don’t get to feel good about what you’re doing.

Endless tweaking or second guessing yourself can easily turn into procrastination. You can measure the cost of procrastination not only in terms of time but also money. When you keep rewriting or redesigning your program, or holding off on a key decision trying to “get it right”–these are all a way of saying “WAIT” to the Universe.

Guess what else “waits” on you? Your income! These patterns seriously slow down your incoming cash flow.

The truth is that “perfect” is an unattainable goal. You can perfect things and tweak them indefinitely. You can stay in indecision or procrastinate on hitting the send button, for a long time, weeks, months, even years. The cost is your time, but also lost income and growth opportunities.

The solution is simple and I call it a no-brainer (pun intended)–the Retrain Your Brain for Success 30 Day Challenge.

Join me on Thursday 7/16 AT 7:30 pm Eastern. We’ll be creating a new empowering set of habits called Motivation by Celebration…with support from me and an amazing group of like minded people. Registration information below.

Not quite sure? Test-drive the program with this EFT Meridian tapping session for Releasing Perfectionism. I give instructions so you can tap along with me! Listen here: http://bit.ly/1Nw0nt3

Ready to Retrain? Let’s get it started in here!

Give your Inner Critic a summer vacation and give yourself the gift of happy productivity! Total value is $450 and at $97 it truly is a no-brainer. \.

Sign up for Success Retraining below:




Ellen Anne Shapiro

We’ve just explored in part 1 of the Hidden Gifts of Perfection, how to sift out what is good from your perfectionism—the drive for excellence—from the unwanted self-punishing aspects.  Let’s look now at a different aspect of the perfectionist vow.

When you look back at some achievement from the past,  do you say, “Yes, it went well, but truthfully, I could have done better.”  It’s true that there is always room for improvement—and  we can always strive to do better.    It’s also true that if our standard is perfection—that’s like a moving target.  How will we know if it’s perfect?

Since we are striving for an unattainable goal, we will always feel like “I’m not good enough.  I don’t deserve success—yet.”   It sounds like yet another aspect of how perfectionism can keep you running in place and getting nowhere.   When you see someone who is constantly busy, working hard yet  not making progress or getting the rewards, he or she is probably running a vow of perfectionism.

The perfectionism can also be a “front” for the fear of failure.  If you secretly fear that you aren’t good enough then you won’t risk putting your energy behind your offers, your marketing, etc.   Someone may even look capable and confident from the outside but because of their hidden fear of exposure, they don’t go all out, or they don’t try for the bigger clients and recognition.

This is closely related to a recognized syndrome called the Impostor Syndrome in psychology—where successful accomplished professionals and  experts, such as doctors and attorneys,  have been shown to have a huge fear of being revealed as not knowing their stuff, or inadequate in a major way.

What  are the gifts here?  Once we shine a light on the perfectionism, and all the ways that this lifelong vow has led us to be excellent, we can actually acknowledge how skilled and excellent we are, right now!  We acknowledge that there will always be room for improvement,  yet we can feel good enough right now, and deserving.   Once we see that we are giving our energy to an unattainable goal, we can adjust our standards so that we can strive to be  both “Awesome and human too” instead of perfect.

If this speaks to you, I’ve got some specific processes from Tapping into Wealth that  can help with this. Clearing this vow can make a HUGE difference in your success.  Come experience a private session (contact me for a Clarity Strategy Action session) or join us for the next Retrain Your Brain 30 day Challenge.

We set ourselves free, finally, when we realize that there is no one out there who can give us that ultimate stamp of approval.  (This almost always comes from having critical and hard to please parents…who, if still alive,  will not likely give us approval even now—and if they did, it still wouldn’t resolve the child part of us that feels  “I’ll never be good enough” ) Now, as adults, we can see that this is not going to happen.  In fact, craving the approval of others, or needing praise and recognition, can keep you running on a different kind of hamster wheel.

This is not to overlook our very natural and human desire to be recognized, to be noticed and appreciated. Social psychology has shown that appreciation and gratitude is the best path to strong relationships, both at work and in the rest of life.

But what happens when you’re in your own business-where there are so many tasks to be done in a day, and where most of those tasks are invisible to others?  Waiting for others to notice and approve is going to be a long wait!

Because you really are good enough.  You deserve reward and recognition, right now—even if you still want to improve.  You ARE awesome..just the way you are!

Since you are human, and all us humans do  need that approval, how about practicing the very habit we cultivate in the 30 Day Retrain Your Brain Challenge? The habit of celebrating and acknowledging yourself.   Go ahead, do it now.  And notice how it feels to do this.  Does it feels awkward or unnatural, hard to do or to remember to do, is it unfamiliar or uncomfortable?  Now that you see how important this is to staying motivated and happy, and allowing yourself to really go for it–if you’d like to get better at this, join us for the next Retrain Your Brain 30 day Challenge that starts July 16th.

And learn to finally give yourself that stamp of approval!

SIGNUP BELOW AND RECEIVE MY AUDIO:
“Turn Your To-Do! List into a Ta-Da! List”
(Ta-Da! Is like the magician pulling the rabbit out of the hat!) .
See You On The Other Side

Hidden Gifts of Perfectionism Part 1

Perfectionism gets a bad rap these days. Let’s take a closer look and discover what is good about it—that’s the part we want to keep even as we let go of painful, self-limiting perfectionism that gets in our way.

Keeping in mind that people do what works for them. Your friend’s perfectionism is working for them emotionally, even though it might look self-destructive to you. It’s not necessarily logical, but Inside your friend’s brain, it makes sense.

That’s true for perfectionism too.

The first hidden gift is that perfectionism comes from a desire for excellence. Striving to be perfect, or to perfect yourself, can motivate you to put in more effort, to continue to improve your skills or performance.

If you have these kinds of standards, you may identify as a perfectionist, but think to yourself “This makes sense for me to keep these high standards and strive for perfection. This works for me because it makes me study, work, or practice harder” This is so strong we can even call it a vow of perfection. Why would you want to give that up?

Striving for excellence, continuing to develop your skills and talents, is wonderful. Don’t give that up! Our world would be so much poorer without excellent teachers, musicians, athletes, business people, writers, scientists.

The problem is when the vow is absolute and rigid–t’s either excellence or total failure. What happens when we make mistakes, or injure ourselves, or something out of our control stops us? What if we fall short of our high standard? We can be absolutely ruthless with ourselves, and refuse to forgive. We can hold these seeming failures against ourselves for years and years. Ironically that can keep you locked into the failure since you are focusing on avoiding it. Pass-fail is a very tough way to grade yourself.

Edison took 1000 tries to come up with a light bulb that worked and could be produced commercially. What if he judged himself as a failure and gave up after a few tries?

I invite you to try something new. Could you forgive yourself , and learn from your imperfections and so-called failures. If you have a financial or business failure, a disappointment or betrayal, that you just can’t get over, that you suspect might be stopping you, I’ve got some specific processes from Tapping into Wealth to free you to try again—and succeed. And love yourself regardless of the outcome.

Come experience a private session or join us for the next Retrain Your Brain 30 day Challenge.

So keep the gift of excellence going and feeling lighter…

SIGNUP BELOW AND RECEIVE MY AUDIO:
“Turn Your To-Do! List into a Ta-Da! List”
(Ta-Da! Is like the magician pulling the rabbit out of the hat!) .
See You On The Other Side!

 

 

What’s the secret recipe? It can be found in a magical success zone, called your x-spot. You know, X marks the spot! If you’re wondering what on earth the x-spot is, it’s a term from positive psychology.

Finding your X-spot can keep you motivated and help you reach goals faster, and according to Shawn Achor, happiness researcher, this is a success accelerant. It’s been proven that we actually get a burst of energy when we are near the end of a project, to finish it. This is only true though when we can see that we are close to the finish line.

This is a well-known phenomenon in marathon races….the runners speed up when they reach that point where they can see the finish line. Wouldn’t you think they’d be more tired at the end of such a long race?

Logically yes, but when they are in the x-spot they get a rush of adrenaline to get the goal accomplished. It’ s about perception—seeing that we are almost there, and realizing it is not only possible but almost surely going to happen.

Instead of focusing on how close they are to a goal, and getting in the x-spot, we do the opposite! We tend to focus on how much more work there is to do, or how much further we have to go–making the goal appear more distant. This is how we lose out on the benefit of the x-spot, and actually slow ourselves down and demoralize ourselves.

How can we use this principle to our advantage?

We need to retrain our brain to make goals seem closer. The easiest way to do that is to chunk down their task into smaller pieces. It’ s so practical–it makes your project less overwhelming and more manageable, and easier to fit into your schedule. It also creates regular opportunities to reach the x-spot, for each of the smaller goals, and so you get a boost of energy from feeling you are getting somewhere and making progress towards completion.

Like any habit, this retraining needs to be practiced regularly over time to make lasting change. Habit change is hard on your own and easier with support, which is why I offer 21 day group challenges like Motivation by Celebration: Retrain your Brain for more motivation and productivity.

Come join me at the x-spot café? (We’ll order decaf, since we surely won’t need caffeine with all of our X-spot adrenaline coursing through our bodies!)

Feb
06

Fire your Inner Slave Driver!

Posted by: | Comments (5)

The problem is, you can’t really fire your boss when you work for yourself! But what if you’re letting o your Inner Critic or even worse, your Inner Slave Driver, take the wheel? You could be making things much harder than they have to be.

Without realizing it, you may be de-motivating yourself by the way you talk to yourself when you are working on a project or a goal. Which one gives you more energy for getting things done and for getting your work out there:

“Oh well, I only got part of it done! So much more to do…why didn’t I get this done yesterday? versus
“Way to go! You rock!” (High five!) Look how much you got done.

This habit is Motivation by Self-Flagellation, and it’s probably well ingrained by now, starting back in school and maybe at home too. How do you know you have it?

Start noticing how you talk to yourself. Do you acknowledge or praise yourself ever?. When you check something off your list as done, do you just go on to the next thing. Do you focus not on what you have done, but on how much more there still is to do? Or maybe you appreciate that you did get it done. Still why did it take so long? And is it really good enough or do you need to make some improvements? Do you know enough to put this out there? Or maybe you should go get more training? Oy!

These are signs that you’ve been conditioned to drive yourself by being hard on yourself. It can show up as being perfectionistic, hesitation to put your work out there, overwork and burn-out.

I’d like to propose a new habit called Motivation by Celebration. It’s a simple habit change, or brain hack. It takes awareness and practice, but it can totally shift your mindset about work and even about yourself. And the effectiveness of this habit is proven in positive psychology research.

To start, just become aware of your inner self talk around goals and getting things done. Awareness is the first step—you can’t change it if you don’t know it’s there. I look forward to sharing more with you in the next few blog posts about how to change the old habit and create a new one. For today, what is one thing you appreciate and can celebrate about you? I’ll give you one—you read this blog post! Now apply it and let me know how it goes.

GROWING YOUR SELF-CONFIDENCE – 7 KEYS FOR  WOMEN IN BUSINESS

What is confidence?
One dictionary definition is: “a feeling or belief that you can do something well or succeed at something”.

Self-confidence seems like one of those things you either were born with or not.   That is mostly NOT true–great  news for all of us, and especially for women in any kind of business. Think of how confident you were when you took your very first step as a toddler: not very.   Yet, you stopped wobbling a long time ago. Now, do you assume you can walk or do you doubt each step?   No, you learned to be confident in your ability to walk.   You LEARNED by doing, by trying, wobbling, falling down and getting up again.

Lack of confidence makes us wobble in business and feel unsure of ourselves.   It also leads to the two P’s: Procrastination and Perfectionism.
“No, I can’t get that program out yet…I don’t have enough to offer.   I need more training, or better copy, or a prettier website.”   What’s your version of this? More importantly, when will you be ready, your offer good enough, your business polished enough?

Perfectionism rears its ugly head by insisting we need to get it right and ‘do the job’ ten times better than anyone else, just to feel adequate.     When your self-esteem depends on getting things right or being perfect, you will overwork—and probably undercharge as well.

Procrastination chimes in when it comes to taking a risk, like  putting your new program, product or marketing out there.   Lack of confidence makes you hesitate to take risks because “what if I’m wrong?”.   If, like most women, you were trained to be good, not make waves, and get the right answer in school–your self-esteem depends on getting things right, NOT on the number of chances you take!

The most successful entrepreneurs have confidence—not necessarily in their particular abilities, though of course that’s helpful—but in their ability to take risks and recover from challenges and set backs.   They are resilient and adaptable.   This is actually quite different from the kind of cocky self-esteem or bravado that we might associate with self-confidence.   I’ll tell you more about that later as it’s one of the 7 Keys to Self-Confidence in this current series of
blog posts.

Contrast that kind of hesitancy with how men are taught and raised….I still remember one of my coaches, Michael Port, saying “Ready,fire, aim!”.   I almost laughed because that was SO far from the way I and many women, operate.     Even the language was strange to me–shooting my clients is the last thing I ever want to do.   I realized Michael didn’t’ mean that literally, he was simply using the common language of business which was developed by men and is still the dominant mindset in the business world.   That aggressive, hunt-em-down language is a huge turn-off for me, and the women and men I serve, and in that moment I promised myself I’d  find and use new heart-based metaphors and language for business.

The main point he was making, which most women need to take to heart more, was “don’t wait to be perfect, get it out there, and then tweak it later. Get into action..!”

Where is your lack of confidence, perfectionism or procrastination holding YOU back from  promoting your business or taking inspired action?

That was on a card I gave to a friend—it hung on her bulletin board for years and made me smile every time.

In this “self-talk for success” mini course I seem to be writing for the 31 day Ultimate Blogging Challenge, it’s officially time to LIGHTEN UP.   I mean SERIOUSLY now, folks!   The minute you can find the humor in something you did (or didn’t do), you’re out of the trap of self criticism.       When you find yourself asking, “Now WHY did I do that?” or”Why didn’t I   think of that solution earlier?” or whatever has you slapping yourself upside your head…can you find the absurdity or the humor instead?
Even when something is truly no laughing matter,  you can restore your sanity and get back to a creative and inspired place with some laughter therapy.   Laughter has countless health benefits , including oxygenating the body which helps us think more clearly.   If you haven’t heard of laughter yoga, go check it out online or find a local class.   Great fun and very healing.

Here are some lighten up tools from the systems I work with:
1. Gobbledygook sounds: Speak nonsense words to another   person with inflections like you were actually conversing with them.   You’ll be giggling in no time.     Rumor has it that a group of scientists liked this so much, they now begin every meeting with gobbledygook.

2. Imagine whatever it is that you need to lighten up about is tiny, or huge, or play with the size of the characters, shrinking them down or blowing them up large, like Alice in Wonderland, or see the situation in a fun house mirror.

3. Fake it till you make it laughter: Even when there is absolute NOTHING funny, this will end up making your body feel as though you are laughing and you will get the health and emotional benefits of real laughter.   Plus you will almost certainly start laughing for real.

How to: Inhale, lean back slightly, throw your hands up over your head and bring them down as though you were slapping your thighs in hysterical laughter, exhale with a “ ha ha” sound.   Keep going and for even more laughs, do it a room with a bunch of   other people.

Go get lighter, I mean seriously dude!

Jul
09

Confessions of a Slow Adapter

Posted by: | Comments (3)

I’ve been sharing with you how our survival programming causes us to resist change.   Down to our very cells, we are oriented to keeping things the same.    This has worked very well to keep humans alive and to continue the species.

But today’s conditions are radically different than what our bodies were designed for.   In business, those who refuse to grow and adapt to new technologies and to the fast pace of change get left behind. A good friend of mine, a successful veterinarian who has done business online since the early days of the internet, told me he’d ignored social media for about two years.   Traffic to his site started slowing down until he realized what was happening.

I confess I’ve resisted social media and adapting new technologies. I didn’t get what the ‘big deal’ was about social media and haven’t wanted to have to change what I’m doing with technology and marketing.   My passion is serving my clients, empowering and inspiring them, and providing great learning programs.   The joy is in that, not in marketing or in mastering new technology!   Like most solopreneurs, I wasn’t looking for a business, I was looking for a way to bring my work into the world, which asks me to set up and run my practice as a business.   I call it the accidental entrepreneur syndrome.

I have a colleague in Santa Fe, prosperity coach Joan Sotkin, who has been an early adapter of social media.   Her enthusiasm has inspired me, especially her statement that “Social media has opened the whole world to me”.  So, slowly, reluctantly, I’m getting with ‘the program.   And trusting that there is a place in the world for turtles like me, or why would there be any of us? Are you a turtle too? f you are a slow adapter, know that you are not alone.    We can support each other and ourselves in moving forward at the pace that feels natural to us.

Meantime, my attitude is changing.   I am seeing the amazing connections and opportunities this new world opens up, in terms of meeting interesting people, creating joint ventures, expanding my world, and reaching more people.     I commit to finding what works for me, and doing it strategically and consistently.    There, I’ve gone public!

What about you, what new adaptation are you willing to commit to?As I go deeper into blogging and learn more about social media, my attitude is changing.   I don’t necessarily want to spend as much time on the computer as I am, but I see now the amazing connections and opportunities that this new world opens up, in terms of meeting interesting people,   creating joint ventures, and reaching the world.   It’s actually getting to be (dare I say) fun !

 

Jul
08

Are you in growth or survival?

Posted by: | Comments (6)

In the last post I was talking about how we humans drive with the brakes on.   Why would we want to defeat ourselves?   Seems kind of perverse.

Actually it makes sense if you look at the world for which our basic instincts and nervous system evolved.   When food was scarce, when predators (animal or human) threatened our survival, when babies often died, we were encoded to survive and to stay safe.

For example, our bodies tend to respond to less food by slowing down our metabolism—because in the past, less food meant famine or starvation so we needed to use less fuel.   That’s one of the problems with very low calorie diets and why if you’ve done a number of calorie restriction diets, it gets harder and harder to lose weight. Our bodies stubbornly hold onto the fat and the weight because the message is “uh oh, starvation conditions”.

It was a good adaptation when food was scarce but causes problems in our modern world.   Most of us here in the US and the western world don’t live in starvation conditions, we live with a superabundance of food.   This metabolic cycle shows how our biological systems, including our nervous system, program us to choose staying safe over taking risks and growing. As cell biologist Dr. Bruce Lipton says in his work “The Biology of Belief”, our cells can only be in survival or growth mode, not both simultaneously.

When we are in fear and survival mode, we won’t take the steps we need to grow, because that involves risk. It’s easy to spiral downward from there, as many people are doing these days, with fears about paying the bills, getting new clients, even losing their home through foreclosure, etc.

The first step is recognizing when we’re in the downward survival spiral, when we’re getting into fear, worry and anxiety—and that these emotions and perceptions are getting in our way. The next step is to acknowledge with love, “this is what’s happening, I’m in the fear cycle” and then saying no, “I’m not going down further.”

This interrupts the spiral. Finally, if you have tools for handling your feelings and shifting your beliefs and emotions, get to work using them; if not, I’m happy to help!