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HOW TO OVERCOME OUR FEAR OF SILENCE

Our fear of silence is a learnt behaviour, which can be unlearned.   You enter a conference room where everyone is taking their seat in silence. How do you feel about the quietness in the room?   Do you secretly worry about why no one is talking?   Nervously laughing, do you make a joke to lighten up the mood?   How about emotionally zoning out while waiting for someone to speak?   Maybe even anxiously scrolling through your Instagram account while waiting for the meeting to start?   What do you do when you are meeting with silence?     For many of us, utter quietness can be uncomfortable.   According to Larry D. Rosen’s research spanning over six years and observing 580 undergraduate students, he found out that their struggle with silence is a learnt behaviour.   Our fear of silence is a learnt behaviour.     Let’s see

HOW TO GRACEFULLY GIVE FEEDBACK

“Communication is an ongoing feedback loop between a spectator and a ringmaster.”   Sitting front row, the little girl’s eyes were looking at the ringmaster. Like a maestro directing a great performance, the ringmaster was standing centre stage.     Much was happening in the background for she heard the sound of drums, trumpets, and flamethrowers galore.     Smiling, she was mesmerized with the show taking place in front of her.     Like a child living in the present moment, she laughed when the ringmaster made a funny joke, and she was genuinely curious when the ringmaster asked the audience a question.     She knew in her heart that she was watching a great performance by the very best.     She was a willing participant, an observer to all that was happening in front of her.     Because this little girl understood her role of

THE SECRET TO SETTING AND UPHOLDING HEALTHY BOUNDARIES

When Suzy* first came to see me, she was feeling torn between her desire to feel loved by her mother and her need to have healthy boundaries. She told me that she was sick and tired of feeling miserable, and that was why she was coming to see me. Suzy wanted to know how to feel good about herself while having a healthy relationship with her mother. Can you relate?   I asked Suzy what she did for a living and she told me that she worked in the elderly care industry. She said she didn’t like her work. When I asked her what made her keep a job she disliked, she said, “My mom! She thinks I should keep it because the pay is steady!”   You might think I was having a conversation with a young adult butting heads with her mother. But Suzy was a middle-aged woman

HOW TO HEAL FROM A PARENT UNAWARE OF THEIR ADDICTION

“You’re just like your father!” “What is wrong with you?” are some examples of what a parent might say because of their addiction to limiting beliefs.   When we think of the word addiction, many of us believe an addiction refers to alcohol, sex, drugs, and gambling.  If we hold that belief as true, it becomes very easy to claim “Others have addictions! Not me!” However ...   Let's dig a little bit deeper.   For example ... Is it true that some people find it difficult to say no? Having difficulty saying no is a form of addiction. And is it true that some people care too much about that others might think of them? Constantly seeking external approval is a form of addition.   So you see, addictions refer to more than just sex, drugs, gambling, and rock & roll.   You now might be wondering ... What is an addiction?  

THE ANTIDOTE TO EMOTIONAL UNAVAILABILITY

An emotionally unavailable person behaves like someone infected with a contagious disease. It affects all of us.   Being present is the antidote to emotional unavailability.   Many of us love to think we are emotionally available, but looking at the characteristics listed below, to what extent are we being present when it comes to ….     Listening Deeply There are four levels of listening.   Cosmetic listening (level 1): It looks like we are listening, but our mind is actually somewhere else. Conversational listening (level 2): We seem engaged in the conversation, listening, talking, listening, talking, but our mind is looking for ways to rebut or judge. In level 2, we are listening to prove ourselves right. Active listening (level 3): The focus is on what the other person is saying. We are recording facts and paying attention to body language as we assess the alignment of words,

HOW CANADIAN BORN CHINESE CAN CONNECT WITH THEIR CHINESE HERITAGE

“You don’t understand. I don’t want you to feel sorry for me. I need you to be compassionate.” In that moment, she felt the all too familiar feeling of what it was like to be a Canadian born Chinese wanting to connect with her Chinese heritage. When Ming* (name changed to protect privacy) first came to see me, her back was hunched forward as if she was carrying too heavy a burden on her shoulders. She nervously pushed her glasses up the tip of her nose before letting her long black hair drop forward to cover part of her face.   When I asked this young Chinese woman what she needed, Ming made the following comment:   Through my talking with Ming, I found out her Chinese grandmother had been the one primarily responsible for her caregiving while she was growing up. Her grandmother, who was living with Ming’s family,

HOW TO FOSTER RESPONSIBILITY IN TEENAGERS

"Show responsibility!  This is all your fault!” I said to my 16-year-old son who had just come home with a zero on a school paper he had handed in late. Showing very little compassion, I pointed my index finger to his face to justify the anger and shame I was feeling inside. “How could you let that happen?” I insisted.   While my parenting tantrum was taking place, my son kept looking outside the kitchen window, verbally acknowledging zero of my questions. Mostly, he remained silent, probably waiting for the storm to boil over. His behaviour showed how I had trained him to ignore his own feelings and emotions and the feelings and emotions of others. He was behaving as I had taught him: like a victim.   ‘How was that possible?’ you might ask.   It is my belief …   When a parent is unaware of their conditioning and

HOW TO FEEL YOUR WAY THROUGH GRIEF

I couldn’t believe he had done it again. I was so angry that I didn’t even take the time to ask myself what could be wrong with him. Instead, I marched right over where he was, grabbed him by the scruff of the neck, and threw him unmercifully on the cold concrete of the back patio. This was the nth time that day that the kids’ puppy, Snowy, had pooped in the living room. I had enough!   I watched him as he pawed the glass door, crying to be let back in. I yelled at him to go pee and poop as if a four month old puppy could have complete control over its bodily functions. He looked at me with pleading eyes. I pretended not to care and told him in a stern voice to go do his business or stay outside, his choice.   Snowy was a

HOW TO OVERCOME MONEY CHASING SYNDROME TO FIND TRUE HAPPINESS

When Cassie* came to see me, she said money was practically everything to her and money was driving her crazy.    Through my talking with her, I found out she mostly determined the importance of people based on the money they made, the financial savings they had, event the type of food they ordered in restaurants. Defensively, she added she also paid a close watch to her own bank account. When hungry for her favourite food in a restaurant, if the price was not right according to her (meaning, the item could be found cheaper elsewhere), she refrained from ordering it, choosing instead to deprive herself of happiness from eating her favourite dish.   Have you ever been in a situation where you deprived yourself of happiness?     Though she and her life partner were professionals who made good salaries, she dressed simply, barely any make-up or jewelry on,

HOW TO STRAY FROM ANXIETY TO LIVE FROM A PLACE OF WELL-BEING

  When Dixie* came to see me, her hands trembled a little as she talked about her husband’s anxiety. She shared how he apparently often sat in their apartment’s living room feeling overwhelmed, his eyes sort of absent, all because he seemed not to know what to do next. Dixie continued by saying she was getting fed up with her husband’s perceived inability to ‘get a grip’ over his life and she was now coming to see me to find ways for him to deal with his anxiety. What I asked her next became a game changer for her. I asked,   What about your anxiety?   Dixie’s mouth opened in a big O. I could tell she was trying to grasp what I was asking her because she said, shaking her head, “No, it’s not about me, it’s about him!”   Once again, I turned her attention back to

Bittersweet
Chanan
Kheirions Hat
Pots and Lids
The Blue Zipper
The Dirty Money
The Man Who Found A Mirror
The Purple Glove
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