Couplespeak™ Blog

Olympic Effort In Everyday Life

 

For the past several days I’ve been glued to the Olympics on TV, along with millions of other people all over the world. My husband and I have been cheering and shrieking at the displays of courage, endurance, grace, power, and agility in the summer games in London.

Mostly, I never cease to be amazed by the sheer force of will demonstrated by these athletes, how they push past the threat of horrible injuries, public humiliation, defeat, and the instant loss of their dreams. I’ve decided that they can teach the rest of us regular humans a thing or two, very applicable to ordinary, everyday life:

  1.  Keep plugging away at your goals or dreams day by day. Daily practice builds new neural pathways, moving you closer toward mastery with every effort.
  2. Envision your dreams or goal clearly, as though it’s happening now. The imagining provides a form of mental “practice” vital for success, and reminds you about your motivation.
  3. Line up your actions with your goals. Ask yourself if what you’re doing daily or weekly moves you closer to your destination. If not, make necessary adjustments.
  4. Get a “coach,” either literally, or in the form of supportive friends and family who will support you and give you critical feedback about your progress. You can’t succeed at most things in a vacuum.
  5. Create a “team.” Find likeminded people who may share your dreams, and understand the anguish you feel when you fail. They’ll speak your language.
  6. Practice daily, diligent self care. Get away from all or nothing stances, do the best you can with the time and energy you have. Remember that rest is also an important part of the picture.
  7. Monitor your thinking and be vigilant about self defeating or dark thoughts. They have a way of becoming self-fulfilling. If you give up, do it for a bit, and then get back in the game. Be kind to yourself. Congratulate yourself and enjoy your successes.

Remember, olympic effort can only move you closer to a medal of one kind or another!

Cheers,
Susan Lager

Tools And Treatment For Negative Thoughts, Obsessiveness, And Anxiety

If you or anyone you know suffers from intrusive thoughts, anxiety, or depression, then tune into my BlogTalk Radio show tonight at 8:30 PM. My co-host is Louise Beck, LICSW, a psychotherapist who specializes in Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy. She also does training and workshops on the subject nationally, and internationally, so she’s the expert on this subject.

You can call in toll-free at 877-497-9046, and be able to join us live on the air with your questions or comments, or catch the show live streaming at: www.BlogTalkRadio.com/SusanLager

If you can’t make the hour long show at 8:30 PM you can always listen to an archived recording of it on my showpage, “The Couplespeak Relationship Forum,” (same URL). I hope you can join us one way or the other! We’ll all learn a lot!

Cheers,
Susan Lager

Negative Thinking And Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy Tools

If you are a victim of negative thinking with all its distortions and catastrophic themes, tune into my next BlogTalk Radio episode on Wednesday, July 18th at 8:30 PM.  My co-host will be Louise Beck, LICSW, a renowned specialist in this field, who travels the world training and inspiring people to use the time-tested tools of Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy. You CAN learn to manage your negative thoughts so they don’t manage you!

Call in toll-free at 877-497-9046 to join us live on the air with your questions or comments, or catch this episode of The Couplespeak Relationship Forum live streaming at www.BlogTalkRadio.com/SusanLager  If 8:30 PM is past your bedtime, you can always listen to the recorded show at the same site when you’re more awake.

(Almost) Giving Up

Among the 10,000 other things I’ve been working on, I’ve been writing two books for the past eight or so months. They’re the first two in a series of Couplespeak™ guides about surviving and thriving in relationships. One is done, and in the complicated process of being properly formatted for publishing, and the other is soon to be born. I think they’ll both be wonderful – that is, if I don’t give up.

I’ve wanted to give up for the past few months, because of all the hassles and challenges of the project, and my wise, almost 25 year old son Alec says, “Mom, don’t give up! You’re about 85% of the way there!”

He’s right. It’s like deciding you might not want to have the baby when you’re entering your ninth month of pregnancy, and there’s nothing wrong with the baby! You wanted this baby. You planned it, did everything right. Now you want to bale?

The logical, mature therapist part of me knows this is probably “Fear of Success.” Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? We’re all familiar with “Fear of Failure,” but why would anyone fear success? And yet, most people have, at some point in their lives, hesitated or sabotaged themselves around some important project or dream, or most commonly, sabotaged a good relationship. That I see every day! People on the threshold of really positive developments, and they can’t integrate it psychologically, because it doesn’t jive with all their negative self scripts, so they just give up.

I saw a TV interview with the Principal of an inner city high school who talked about his daily battle to keep his students on track, competing with the lure of gangs and drugs. When asked if he ever felt like giving up, he laughed and said, “Of course! I actually do give up for a period of time every day. Then I go back, and continue to fight the battle.”

Maybe that’s the clue. Let yourself give up when you need to, then remember why you’ve been in it, and go back to your dream.

Giving up – for now,
Susan Lager

P.S.  The name of the book is, “I’m Talking! Are You Listening?” Fix Communication Problems With Your Partner In No Time Flat!   (Coming out next month, if I give up just a little each day).

Tax Time Crazies

Every year starting in March, and going through April 15th, most everyone I know, myself included, gets weirded out about taxes. Preparing them for the accountant, realizing all the money spent on ridiculous things, waiting to find out the verdict about what’s owed or what, if anything will be refunded, then PAYING FOR IT! Most dining room tables have long been lost to piles of papers, documenting finances for the past year. Some tables, I hear, have remained in “tax mode” for years!

It’s a little bit like pregnancy and childbirth. The buildup is literally and figuratively huge, the event is unnerving, but then, thankfully it’s over and forgotten – until the next time around.

The one consolation is that you are not alone. Thousands and thousands of people procrastinate to the very end when dealing with taxes. (I have clients who were just beginning the whole process this week!) Thousands more are checking their mailboxes daily to get the package back from the accountant telling them if they’re screwed or not. (I see at least one neighbor doing this each day.)

Everyone moans about it. Nobody has a viable alternative though, if you like having drivable roads, safe bridges, public schools, and such things.

My best advice? Remind yourself that:

1. This is the un-fun part of being an adult.

2. This too shall pass – at least until next year…….

Cheers,
Susan Lager

Blog Talk Radio Host

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Susan Lager

I am a licensed, board certified pyschotherapist and relationship coach in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Through my psychotherapy or coaching services, I can provide you with skills and tools to transform your life.

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