Loving An Alcoholic

I’m not really sure where to begin… Loving an alcoholic is probably one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in my life. It’s a rollercoaster of emotions daily. You wake up each day not knowing what is in store for you. Not a single day, or single moment is predictable. Some days you wake up and the day is going fine and then out of the blue something switches and BOOM! It all comes crashing down.

When these moments arise, you’ll try every tactic to try and keep your loved one from drinking again. I’ve gone at it at every angle, ultimatums, compassion, giving in, silent treatment, you name it and I’ve tried it. None of it works… In fact it always makes the problem worse. The addict is going to do what the addict wants to do and unfortunately I will never be chosen over the alcohol until they choose it to be that way.

As much as I wish and pray my words and actions would help change the mind of the alcoholic, it just won’t happen until they decide that they want to change. It’s one of the most heartbreaking situations I’ve dealt with. Why can’t this person just see that I’m trying to help them? I only want what’s best for them. Why do they always think that I’m the enemy? These are questions and thoughts anyone has that deal with any type of addict.

The truth is…they don’t see or hear any of it while under the spell of addiction. Their brain has to be rewired and consistently worked on if they do want to change. Until then, any person who is extremely close to the addict will suffer greatly by their actions and behavior. They will never see in the moment how their decisions affect the most important people in their life.

The real problem is that, addicts are so broken inside and don’t have the proper tools to work on themselves. Nine times out of ten, addicts suffered a great deal of childhood trauma which set them on the path of self destruction. The only survival skill they have is to numb the pain, and quiet the thoughts and emotions. It’s a viscous endless cycle until they put a stop to it.

Why do I stay??? It’s a question I ask myself on some of the hardest days. Only a person who is in my shoes would understand, to the rest we probably seem crazy. But I’ve been with the alcoholic through sober times and drunk times. This person is a truly kind loving person. I’ve seen the beauty and I’ve seen the beast. I feel that every person on earth is deserving of love and less rejection. I know this persons trauma but I’ll never be able to feel it the way they do. All I can do is support them through the good times and the bad.

Addicts need less judgment and rejection and more compassion and understanding. We don’t have to make excuses or accept horrible behavior, but we do need to see through those actions and understand they are crying out for help and wanting to be loved and accepted. There is always hope for someone struggling with addiction and a big player in their success is their support system.

Please feel free to comment!

Free Hugs Anyone??

Free hugs anyone? According to science we all should be lining up to hand out hugs.

Hugs boost both oxytocin and serotonin levels.

Oxytocin is sometimes called the “love hormone”. It can help to heal negative feelings like loneliness, anger, and anxiety, while bringing about more positive feelings like trust and empathy. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is believed to bring feelings of happiness and well-being.

I remember going through a pretty bad period of anxiety when I was in my early 20’s, and whenever I would have an anxiety attack, all I would feel was the need to be hugged. It must have been the oxytocin and serotonin I was needing. Our bodies always make us crave what we really need.

Hugging can treat and prevent ailments.

The chemicals released during a hug have been shown to lower blood pressure, helping to reduce the risk of heart disease. In addition, the sternum pressure experienced when hugging helps to stimulate the thymus gland, which is responsible for production and regulation of your body’s white blood cells – the cells that prevent and fight disease!

Hugging brings closeness and trust to relationships.

Hugging someone you care about can really help strengthen the bond between the two of you. It increases self-esteem, builds trust, and cultivates patience and appreciation.

Experts recommend at least 8-12 hugs a day to reap the benefits that hugging has to offer. Go give your loved ones a nice, long hug. Not only will you experience all of these benefits, so will they.

Hugs promote relaxation.

A hug can relax your muscles, relieving tension in your body. It can help to soothe aches and pains — and take away physical stress, as a prolonged hug causes stress chemicals like cortisol to drop. This helps to relax you, both physically and mentally.

Hugs can help you reach a state of zen.

The simple act of giving a hug can help you to be present in the now. A hug can connect you not only with another person, but also with your own heart, feelings, and breathing. Hugs can really balance your mood!

Hugging boosts self-esteem, especially in children. The tactile sense is all-important in infants. A baby recognizes its parents initially by touch. From the time we’re born our family’s touch shows us that we’re loved, safe and secure. The associations of self-worth and tactile sensations from our early years are still imbedded in our nervous system as adults. The cuddles we received from our Mom and Dad while growing up remain imprinted at a cellular level, and hugs remind us at a somatic level of that. Hugs, therefore, connect us to our ability to self love.

Go Get Hugging!!

Book Review: Coaching for Performance

Coaching for Performance

By: John Whitmore

If you are a life coach then I’m sure you’ve heard about GROW. If you haven’t heard about the GROW model then I suggest you get this book and do some learning. The GROW model stands for Goals, Reality, Options, Will. This book will really help your Life Coaching skills and transform your coaching so you can stand out against the rest.

This book will help you do advanced work with your clients. To be a good life coach you must be versatile in all areas. This book gives you models for psychosynthesis, spiritual intelligence, emotional intelligence and boundaries for coaching. This book talks about how to create awareness and responsibility for your clients. Having awareness is the only way the GROW sequence can be put into full action.

If you are a Life Coach wanting to expand from single clients to team coaching then this is one book you want in your back pocket. The last half of this book gives such good detailed information on coaching teams and creating a leadership situation. The GROW sequence can be used for a team as well. A lot of companies today are looking for life coaches/team coaches to come in and help transform their team. A business will never be successful without a good team behind it.

Overall if you are a Life Coach I would highly recommend this book. It has helped me in so many ways with my clients. It has also helped me in my parenting skills as well. I was able to take some of the models and apply them to my family. I have 8 kids so we regularly have to function on a team level to maintain the peace.

The True Self

Chances are you have lots of beliefs about yourself and everyone else you come across. You use these beliefs to help understand why people do what they do. If someone yells at you, you might forgive them because you know they are under a lot of stress. Or, you might not trust them because you think that this person is always angry with you. Or, you might even think that deep down, they are an angry person who should be avoided at all costs.

There are probably times when you believe that a person’s actions reflect the situation they are in or their current mental state. But, you also have times when you think that a person’s actions are a reflection of their true self.

Psychologists around the world have been interested in capturing the qualities that people think are part of someone’s true self and also in understanding how the idea of a true self affects people’s actions and their relationships with others.

An interesting fact of the true self is that it seems to be a belief that is similar across cultures. That is, aspects of the true self have been explored in studies using many different populations around the world, and the beliefs tend to be quite similar.

Two core beliefs are that the true self tends to be moral and good. So, when people make a change in their actions, they are more likely to be judged as doing something that reflects their true self when they change from doing something bad to something good than vice versa. This is why someone who stops abusing drugs or alcohol is often judged as allowing their true self to come through, while someone who starts abusing drugs or alcohol is judged as suppressing their true self.

These beliefs also tend to lead people to assume that someone can change for the positive over time, even if many of their past actions have been bad. We are reluctant to decide that someone is truly evil and prefer to believe that their true self has a moral beauty that might someday lead them toward better actions in the future.

An interesting fact of the true self is that our beliefs about our true self and other people’s true selves are similar. This belief differs from the way we often treat our motives compared to those of people from a different group. Often, we assume that we and people from our group have better motives than people from some outgroup. But, we also assume that deep down (in their true self) members of other groups are good and moral people.

Why does the concept of the true self matter?

One reason, the belief in a true self affects people’s judgments about what actions give life meaning. A person might work hard at their job and also spend time with family. They might believe that their job is just something they do, but that the importance they place on family relationships is part of their true self. Meaning, the effort they put into their family relationships will give them a greater feeling that their life has had meaning than the effort they have put into their profession.

Another reason, the belief in true self can influence the treatments people will consider for mental illnesses. For example, many college students are willing to take medications for attention disorders that allow them to focus on their work. Part of the reason why they take this medication so freely is that few people consider their ability or inability to concentrate as a central part of their true self. On the other hand, many patients suffering from bipolar disorder are reluctant to take their medication, because they believe that their medication is changing aspects of their true self.

While the true self seems to be an important part of people’s beliefs about themselves and others, it is hard from a scientific standpoint to think of the true self as something that actually exists. I may believe that I have a true self, but is there actually a true self inside me? It can be useful to believe that we and other people are inherently good and moral, but that doesn’t mean that there is an inherently good and moral person lurking within every person just waiting to get out.

What is the Observing-Self? And why it Matters.

True Growth Coaching Website

Human beings have a unique ability that rarely gets talked about. It’s the ability to observe and react to our own behaviours as if they were the actions of someone else. In other words, to be the ‘observing self’.

As a Life Coach I encourage my clients to utilize their observing self, because it allows them to ‘step out’ of problematic trance states and gain a fresh perspective.

The observing self makes us human.

The ‘observing self’ is perhaps the seat of what it is to be human. As far as we know, no other creature has the capacity to reflect on reality and its own place within that reality; if other creatures do have something similar, it is to a much lesser extent.

This ability is a function of the prefrontal neo-cortex, which we can regard as the ‘conductor’ of the brain’s ‘orchestra’ or the leader of the brain.

From this capacity flows the potential to become more than just our immediate and current self in our immediate and current situations.

Many psychotherapeutic techniques specifically encourage the use of the observing self. The extent to which we can engage this faculty corresponds to how well we can transcend the situations in which we find ourselves, understand the workings of our own minds, and minimize damaging emotions so we have clarity and tranquility.

Here are three ways I use my clients observing self to help them feel better:

1. Grade emotions

I have them grade their emotions because it is as if a part of us is watching the problem from the outside. We are partly outside the problem pattern and have removed it from our ‘core’ self. This breaks the grip of the problem behaviour.

So for instance: If I feel anxious and decide that ’10’ is the most terrified I could possibly feel and ‘1’ is the most relaxed, I might then rate my anxiety at that moment as ‘6’. The act of doing this requires me to use my observing self. This is one reason I use grading with our clients.

2. Laugh

When we laugh at a situation, for that time, we engage the observing self. When we label ourselves or get labeled as ‘depressive’, ‘anxious’, or ‘alcoholic’, the opposite happens. The core of the person then identifies with their behaviour. In a way, perspective is lost and their identity becomes meshed with their ‘condition’.

Humor needs to be encouraged at the right time and in the right way. But you can tell that the capacity to engage the observing self is getting stronger when you see someone start to show glimpses of humour in relation to their situation.

3. Use imagination and analogy

If you are lost in a forest, all you know is that you are surrounded in a sea of trees.

But imagine what it would be like if you could be lifted above the trees for a few moments. You would look around and see that you are actually very close to a trail. After being set down again, you’d be able to find your way out of this sea of trees.

This metaphor/imagination practice demonstrates both how metaphor/imagination can activate the observing self and how engaging the observing self can help people have a detached view of their situations, putting themselves in a better position to escape a problem state or circumstance. Describing the pattern of a person’s problem with a story or analogy lets them see it ‘from the outside’.

There are many ways to help people detach psychologically from their emotional patterns. It’s a very important skill to learn to have the best chance at becoming as mentally healthy as possible.

Gratitude…The Missing Link to Achieving Your Goals

I love to talk about goals. I believe in achieving your goals.
I live on goal setting and empowering my clients to achieve their goals. But what if there was another way? What if there was a way to get what you wanted and you would feel great about it?
I have learned Gratitude is a powerful link to achieve your goals. Often people forget to be grateful for even waking up to live another day.

Last year, I left my dead end Postal Route job and I tried different ways to make money. I got myself involved in all sorts of adventures. I took risks and won some and lost some. It was hard sometimes to get back up and try again. It was hard to admit I had failed or I had been duped.

Am I grateful?

Should I be grateful?
I complained for a long time. I refused to admit I was wrong. I didn’t want to face myself. I struggled with my pain and disappointment. But I learned a valuable thing…life teaches you lessons along the way. These lessons have a way of preparing you for your future.

 

Gratitude has helped me in more ways than I can imagine.

I’ve realized when I complain, it blocks my creativity. I can’t think. I can’t produce. I need to keep coming up with great ideas and not being grateful clouds my mind.

I want to share with you what I have learned about gratitude.

Gratitude is a powerful key to unlocking your hidden potential.

I love talking about hidden potential with my clients. So many of them don’t realize what’s locked deep down inside themselves. When you are grateful, you see opportunities around you. When you stay in a state of complaint, you are consumed with yourself. This makes you lose sight of the potential within you. Complaining is actually the EGO.

Complaining aka The Ego makes you see only negativity. I realized when I had a negative mindset, I lost sight of the opportunities around me. I was focused on what I didn’t have and I didn’t look within to explore what I did have.

Gratitude increases your productivity.

Not being grateful drains you of your energy. This affects your productivity. You can’t produce your best because you have no energy.

Gratitude releases hormones within you that get you excited about life. Excitement increases your energy levels and you find yourself more productive.

Gratitude helps you achieve your goals.

Do an exercise this week for yourself. Write at least one thing you are grateful for every single day. Do this in the morning or before bed each night. You will realize at the end of the week that you have gotten to know yourself more. Through this process, you have also realized strengths you have and you need to focus on. In these strengths, lies your dreams and goals. You will have more clarity about your purpose. If you stick to this plan you will soon be unlocking your full potential.

The art of gratitude is an art you need to learn and practice daily. You cannot achieve your goals without it. You cannot fully be happy in your life without it. You will be amazed at how much your life can change just from expressing Gratitude.

If this post has inspired you, please share it with your friends and family. How has gratitude affected your life in the past? Feel free to leave a comment below.

6 Reasons Being Organized Will Help Your Life

Being Organized Reduces Stress:

People who describe their homes as cluttered or full of unfinished projects tend to be more depressed, fatigued, and have higher stress levels than people who felt their homes were restful and organized.

Surprised?

When you come home to clutter or a list of To Dos, it may prevent the natural decline in cortisol (the stress hormone) that occurs over the course of the day, researchers say. This can and will take a toll on your mood, sleep, health, and more. Taking the time to tackle those piles of laundry, sort through stacks of papers, and organize your space won’t just clear away the physical stuff, it’ll actually help you feel happier and more relaxed.

Being Organized Makes You More Productive:

Clutter is distracting, and research confirms that it can actually affect your ability to focus. Looking at too many things at once gives you sensory overload. De-cluttering your desk will payoff at work, but the benefits won’t stop there. When you’re organized at work, you’re more productive and efficient, which means you’re able to finish on time and go home. This leaves you with more time for your needs like to exercise, prepare a meal, relax, and get more sleep. Clutter in the home works the same way. You can either spend your days going through clutter regularly or get organized, stay organized and enjoy your space! You’ll find you have time to do other projects or get out and do things without feeling stressed.

Being Organized Improves Your Health:

You’re probably wondering how organization has anything to do with your health. Being an organized person helps you stay accountable for many things in your life. People who set short-term goals, have a plan, and are more likely to stick with an exercise program than those who show up to the gym and wing it. Using organizing skills to be more organized about exercise makes you more aware of your progress, which motivates you to stay accountable even when you don’t feel like it. This will also help you be more mindful about what you put into your body. When you are holding yourself more accountable about exercise the food will follow because you don’t want to ruin that good workout. Another way being organized helps improve your health is you will find that you sleep better. When things are in place as they should be in your life then your mind will also be calm. Between a good exercise regimen and eating a balanced diet your sleep will be on point. All of these things improve your overall health and quality of life!

Being Organized Makes You Love Your Home/Work Space:

This truly is a no brain-er. When you stay organized you can regularly find whatever you are looking for. Your space is clean and highly functional. Who doesn’t love a clean organized environment? It makes you love being in that space because it brings a sense of calmness and relaxation into your mind.

Being Organized Boosts Your Self-Esteem:

Being organized makes you feel more accomplished. This is one of the best ways to boost self-esteem. Go to your dresser and open it. Is it a complete disaster? If so, pull out all those clothes and dump them on the floor. Get rid of the things you no longer wear, and fold the clothes you want to keep. Stack them according to color and season. I love keeping my closet color coded and shirt/pant type. This way, when you wake up in the morning you’ll know exactly where everything is and what you want to wear. You will be amazed at how much better your clothes feel and look on you. I also love to have my bathroom organized with containers under my cabinets. I can always locate what I need when I need it and it makes me feel so good inside!

Being Organized Save You Time And Money:

Organization keeps you from buying items you already have, but you’ve forgotten about or lost in your household or workplace. Did you know lost item replacement is roughly an 80 million dollar business? Being organized can save you so much money and time it takes to replace the items.

14 Habits That Happy Couples Have In Common

True Growth Coaching Website

A happy couple is not by any means a perfect couple that just happens overnight, but an imperfect couple that learns to enjoy each other’s differences, and works together every day to create something special and unbreakable. In other words, a great relationship isn’t luck, it requires effort and care to grow and evolve in ways that keep both partners happy.

I have read several books on relationships, coached many couples who were struggling to find happiness in their relationships, and have been up against my very own personal experiences. All of this has given me insight into the specific behaviors that make two people happy as a couple. Here is what I’ve found to be in common with most happy couples relationships:

1. They practice self-care as individuals

I talk about self-care regularly with my clients. It’s a very important aspect of my work. Relationships don’t create happiness, they reflect it. Happiness comes from within. Relationships are simply mirrors of the combined ecstasy that two people have as individuals. What you see in the mirror is what you see in your relationships. Your dislikes in your partner are often your dislikes about yourself. Your acceptance of your partner often reflects your acceptance of yourself. The first step to having a healthy relationship with someone else is to have a healthy relationship with yourself. If you love yourself then you will radiate love to your partner.

2. They stand together and refuse to let outsiders have a say in their relationship.

Relationships don’t always make sense, especially to outsiders. So don’t let outsiders run your relationship for you. Many times outsiders have a bit of jealousy because of the current state of their relationships and can unintentionally sabotage yours and your partners. If you’re having an issue with your partner, work it out with THEM only! You have to live your own lives your own way… that’s all there is to it. It’s our duty, and ours alone, to decide if a relationship is right for us. If you and your partner both agree that it is right, and it’s worth working on, don’t bring the outside in. It’s ok to have privacy these days.

3. They know their relationship is a unique, uncomparable bond

This I can say I know from true experience. No one understands my husbands and my relationship like we do, and really, we like it that way! Don’t compare your relationship to anyone else’s. Every couple makes their own relationship rules, love agreements, and habits. Just focus on what you two share, and make your unique bond the best it can be.  All relationships have their ups and downs, they do not stay on a continuous blissful high. Working together through the hard times will make your relationship stronger in the end.

4. They are intimate about everything

Sex is not the only thing to be intimate about. Sex doesn’t always equal love either. Especially in the beginning of a relationship, attraction and pleasure in sex are often mistaken for love. Sex is amazing but it’s the easy part. Intimacy is far more and what makes relationships last. It requires honest communication and openness about concerns, fears and sadness, as well as hopes, dreams and happiness.

5. They don’t try to change each other

Our biggest need in life is to be accepted as we are. Sometimes we try to make our partners into what we want them to be, what we think we need, love, or desire. But these expectations and perceptions are against reality, against their benefit and ours, and always end in disappointment, because it is not who they are. The foundation of love is to let your partner be their true self’s, because that is who we are supposed to be in love with. Otherwise we fall in love only with our own fantasies, and miss out entirely on their true beauty. Instead of trying to change your partner, give them your support and grow together.

6. They go on dates or spend quality time alone

They take date nights with each other. If you neglect your relationship, your relationship will neglect you too. With busy schedules we often forget to relax and enjoy each other. In relationships distance is measured in affection, not miles. Two people can be right next to each other and yet miles apart. So don’t ignore the one you love, because lack of attention often hurts more than angry words. I love our date nights. We have 8 kids so date nights are much needed. Sometimes our date nights are simply cooking a special meal and checking out to our room where we watch a movie without kids! Whatever it may be as long as we get to be together.

7. Communication is the Golden Rule

Your partner is not a mind reader. Communicate your thoughts. Give them the information they need rather than expecting them to know. The more that remains unspoken, the greater the risk for problems. Start communicating clearly. Most problems, big and small, within a relationship, start with bad communication.

Listening is also part of communication. Listen intently before replying. Don’t listen so you can reply, listen to understand. Open your ears and mind to your partner’s concerns and opinions without judgment. Look at things from your partner’s perspective as well as your own. Most people fail to understand that communication is both speaking and listening.

8. They don’t play games with each other’s heads and hearts

Cheating and lying aren’t struggles, they’re reasons relationships break up. Relationships fall apart quite easily when they’ve been held together with lies. The truth is, relationships don’t hurt. Lying, cheating and twisting reality until it plays with someone’s emotions is what hurts. Promises mean everything, but after they’re broken, sorry means nothing. So never mess with your partner’s feelings just because you’re unsure of your own. If you are unsure in any way, be sure to say so. Always be open and honest. And remember that when the truth is replaced by silence, silence becomes a lie too.

9. They review and discuss their goals and dreams often

For couples, it’s you two against the world. Having regular discussions with each other about goals, dreams, passions and the future, in a way that’s positive and inspiring, will not only bring you closer together, but will also bring your collective desires closer to reality.

10. They negotiate and compromise on decisions

Since people’s needs change over time, and life itself demands changes too, the inner workings of good relationships are negotiated all the time. And oftentimes a two-way compromise is the best solution. There has to be a balance of give and take.

11. They don’t blow things out of proportion.

People make mistakes. Things happen. There’s no reason to break your relationship into pieces over spilt milk. One way to check if something is worth fighting over is to ask yourself this question: “Will this matter next year?” If not, then let it go immediately and leave it in the past.

12. They Control their anger

Heated arguments are a waste. They drain you mentally, emotionally and physically. Your partner doesn’t have to be wrong for you to be right. Most of the time it just doesn’t matter that much. When you feel anger boiling inside and you want to yell that rude remark on the tip of your tongue, just close your mouth and walk away. Don’t let your anger get the best of you. Give yourself some time to calm down and then calmly discuss the situation.

13. They apologize to each other immediately and forgive whole heartedly 

This takes practice but let me tell you from experience, my husband and I always apologize immediately. Sometimes we both realize how petty we sound and we both start apologizing. Making up after an argument is key to every happy relationship. A simple, honest “I’m sorry” is usually the most important step. We all make mistakes, but our willingness to admit it doesn’t always come naturally. So remember, it doesn’t really matter who’s right, it’s what’s right that matters. If your relationship is important to you, an apology is always right. Apologies must be backed by sincere patience and forgiveness. Because no matter how honest and kind you try to be, you will occasionally step on your partner’s toes. And this is why patience and forgiveness are so important to relationships.

14. They do sweet nothings for each other

We’ve all heard the term “sweet nothings” at some point in our lives. Happy couples will stop and pick up some flowers or their partners favorite ice cream bar to surprise them with here and there. As simple as it sounds, these sweet nothings show your partner that you care and pay attention to the details of the relationship. Sweet nothings can even be as simple as flirting with each other, or telling them that they look beautiful or handsome today. All those little things keep a relationship alive and thriving.

In conclusion I’m not suggesting that these are the only factors to being a happy couple, I’m simply stating some common habits that can make all the difference in the world. Most of the happiness in our relationships is due to intentional decisions. Meaning, it’s possible for us to significantly improve our relationships simply by altering what we choose to do every day. Happy couples are always looking for ways to show their partners that they care and are truly invested in the relationship.

3 Simple Morning Affirmations to Reach Your Goals

Affirmations can play a very important role in helping you achieve your goals. Here are a few to get you started on this Thursday Morning.

I am fully committed to achieving my goals.

I find when I’m going through goals with clients, there is a big commitment issue, it will turn out to be something that the person thinks other people expect from them but the goal is not very important to them. Make sure you are setting goals for yourself and no one else otherwise you will not bring the goals to fruition.

I can achieve all of my goals.

This is a simple but yet incredibly powerful affirmation.  You want to achieve your goals and this is what this affirmation is focused on. You can do anything you set your mind to, so yes you can achieve all of your goals.

I set goals that are really important to me.

Again make sure you are setting goals for yourself. If you set yourself a bunch of goals and the majority of them are not that important to you, your mind will get scrambled and you won’t know what to work on. Set clear goals that are really important to you and really focus on them.

How to Overcome a Challenge in 5 Minutes

Life loves to throw us challenges daily. Wether it be car issues, work issues, family drama, these unforeseen challenges can really ruin your day. But are theses challenges worth getting the best of you? Did you know that if you really focus and set your mind to it, you can calmly overcome 99% of your challenges in as little as 5 minutes?

Here’s how to overcome a daily challenge in 5 minutes or less!

1. Damage Assessment

Your first job is to determine how significant the unforeseen challenge really is by analyzing its place in your current situation as well as its degree of impact. I call this step a damage assessment. Your goal here is to understand the depth of the new circumstances which will direct your next step of action, help along your decision making and hopefully help you calm down when first confronted with it.

2. Emotional Response Check

No matter what the results of your damage assessment are, you’ll need to control your emotional response. If you want to come up with an effective, logical solution to the new challenge, you’ll need to remain in a steady, calm, neutral state. Negative self-talk can be a major issue. It’s easy to go down a rabbit hole by thoughts like, “This is bad,” or, “I can’t believe this happened,” but those are going to fuel panicked thinking and biased views on the situation. Instead, take deep breaths, focus only on the objective qualities of the challenge, and try to detach yourself from the problem. When you can detach for a moment it will help gain clarity of everything.

3. Ask Yourself if it Effects the Long-term

Remember all your long-term goals, and move away from the short-term thinking. This will help you prioritize your needs to address the given challenge and help you objectively distance yourself from the situation at hand. Don’t put all your focus into something that is a short-term problem. Is this challenge going to effect your long-term Goals? Is this something worth wasting time and energy that won’t even payoff? These are some questions you should be asking yourself.

4. Solution Time

Come up with two or three different courses of action, then select the one that offers the most advantages. When we have control of our emotional response to challenges we are able to think more clearly, thus in turn we can process solutions instead of making an impulsive decision. You will benefit every time you stay cool, calm and collected.

So there you have it! Unless the challenge is a life or death situation, the next time you are faced with an unforeseen challenge remember to take 5 before you react. Let yourself process through the situation at hand and stay away from impulsive decision making.