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Archive for December, 2012

JUST SAY NO TO NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS

A common question in life coaching is, “What’s the difference between a life coach and a therapist?” The answer goes something like this: Imagine you are driving a car through life with a psychotherapist as your driving instructor. The psychotherapist will spend a lot of time instructing you to look through your rearview mirror at where you have been. A “life coach” driving instructor will encourage you to look out your windshield at where you are going.

A NEGATIVE DRAIN

Today, I am going to swim against the life coaching current and ask you to look back at where you have been. New Year’s resolutions often have roots in the past. We look back, with a certain amount of regret, at what we failed to accomplish in the outgoing year. Focusing on our shortcomings, we resolve to make up for them in the New Year; usually with bigger and better plans than before. Although setting these goals can leave you feeling hopeful, looking back with self-judgment can sap your confidence and drain your spirit.

ENERGIZE YOUR SPIRIT

Instead of looking back at your shortcomings with regret, look back at your successes with confidence and gratitude. Looking back and acknowledging your accomplishments will give you the opportunity to celebrate your successes and energize your spirit as you look forward to your new year.

YOUR FIRST “WRITER’S WHOLE LIFE PERSPECTIVE” CHALLENGE

Thirty-One Just For Fun

Over the next couple of weeks, take some time to reflect on 2012 and list 31 things that you accomplished throughout the year. I hope you will celebrate your successes by coming back and sharing some of your discoveries in the comments section of this post. The most important part of this challenge is recognizing the positive, energizing events of 2012. Even if you are unable to list 31 achievements, come back and celebrate with us by bragging a little about your year.

QUESTIONS TO HELP YOU GET STARTED ON YOUR LIST

  • How did you grow personally, professionally or as a writer?
  • Did you have a positive impact on others?
  • What writing skills did you learn or strengthen?
  • Did you improve organizational skills?
  • Did you find the secret to time management?
  • Did you complete any writing challenges?
  • Did you join any groups?
  • What personal strengths did you gain?
  • What goals did you achieve?
  • What unplanned accomplishments did you achieve?
  • What character qualities did you strengthen?
  • Have you improved your communication skills?
  • Have you gotten better at saying no to others, to yourself, or to activities that drain you?
  • What acts of kindness did you share?
  • What special, memory building moment did you have with family, friends, writing groups, by yourself and so on?
  • Did you submit any of your writing? If you want to challenge yourself to submit more in 2013 click on the Sub Six tab to learn more about our Facebook submission support group.
  • Did any submission get accepted for publication?
  • Did yo get any rejections with encouraging notes?
  • Did you find a positive way to accept rejections?

THIS CHALLENGE IS NOT JUST FOR FUN

In spite of the name of this challenge, your list of 31 accomplishments is not just for fun. It will be a building block as we move forward with other challenges.

COMING UP NEXT:

JANUARY 9, 2013. Now that we have looked at the past, we will look at the present from a Whole Life Perspective. How smooth or bumpy is your life’s ride? Do your tires need balancing? You need to know where you are before you can know where you are going.

JANUARY 16: We will look at the future. If there are any New Year’s resolution addicts out there, you will be able to get your fix in a more positive way.

Disclaimer: Lest I offend any therapists, I will say that more and more therapists are integrating life coaching methods into their practice and helping their clients look forward.

 

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The Contest:  Write a children’s holiday story beginning with any version of “Dashing through the snow in a one horse open sleigh.”  You may use that actual opening, or you may change it to any similar version “[Verb of your choice]ing through the [any substance you choose] in a [conveyance of any kind].”  For example, “Dashing through the sand in a two-wheeled donkey cart” or “Sloshing through the swamp in a green and white canoe” or “Flying through the air in a striped hot air balloon…”  You get the idea, I’m sure 🙂  But “Dashing through the snow in a one horse open sleigh” is completely acceptable too – whatever works for you 🙂  Your story may be poetry or prose, silly or serious or sweet,  religious or not, based on Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or whatever you celebrate, but is not to exceed 350 words (because I have to read them all in the week before Christmas! :))

My Entry

THE LAND OF NO SNOW (348 words)

by Alayne Kay Christian

Gliding over grass on a flattened cardboard box. Down the hill I go! Sledding in the land of “No Snow.”

My parents tell the legend of one snowy day, long, long ago. But I’ve never seen fluffy, white flakes dancing in the sky. I haven’t felt snowflakes plop down on my eyelashes or melt on my stretched out tongue. Snowman? What’s that? Something I see printed on wrapping paper and pajamas. I can only imagine what a carpet of snow looks like, or how fun it is to hurl and dodge snowballs.

Oh what fun it is to ride and sing a cardboard sleighing song tonight. Not! Well, it is fun. But snow . . . now snow would be fun.

 ***

I lean over and whisper in Santa’s ear.

“OH. Ho, ho ho! That’s a mighty tall order,” Santa says. “I’ll see what I can do.”

 ***

Shivering and standing out in the unusually cold, damp night, I gaze at the brightest star in the sky and make a wish. I close my eyes and imagine my wish coming true. Something cold and wet brushes my cheek.

 Could it be?

 Fluffy, white flakes dance in the moonlight. I stretch out my tongue and catch some icy magic.

If I want Santa to come, I have to go to bed. I don’t want to miss the snow. But I don’t want Santa to miss my house. I shuffle off to bed.

***

Morning light seeps through my eyelids. I leap out of bed and run to my window.

“A carpet of snow!”

***

Dashing through the snow on a flattened cardboard box, down the hill I go. Oh no!

The box softens and loses shape. It won’t go down the hill. I don’t mind. There was much more to my wish . . . building snowmen, dodging and hurling snowballs . . .

Here comes Dad. What’s that red thing?

“This was my sledding saucer when I was a boy. It really flies! Merry Christmas.”

 

Dashing through the snow

Down the hill I go

Laughing all the waaaaaaaaay.

 

To learn more about the contest, visit Susanna’s blog http://susannahill.blogspot.com/2012/12/the-2nd-annual-holiday-contest.html

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Hello, and welcome to my blog. The purpose of this blog is to give writers a whole life perspective. Even though we writers sometimes feel as if our whole life is writing, it is not. We wear many hats in life and we are often pulled in many directions. It becomes almost impossible to figure out where to focus our attention. If we become over focused in any one area of life, we get out of balance. This imbalance can have a negative impact on our creativity and writing.

My posts will offer a blend of my author/writer experience, life coaching knowledge, and my own life wisdom. These posts will offer food for thought, encouragement, and tips to help you live a writer’s whole life. Once I get the “Writer’s Whole Life Perspective” blog established, I will be inviting other writers, coaches, and wise individuals to be guest writers.

Coming Soon! Just Say No to New Year’s Resolutions.

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