coaching, Health, Motivation, parenting, Uncategorized, Wellness

What do you think about a better life?

Self talk has to be one of the most important things that we do to and for ourselves. A lot of people poke fun at affirmations or positive thinking. They think it’s a woo woo science and that it’s all just a gimmick. Ironically it has been widely recognized that emotional abuse to a child is a real thing.

If a child is raised in a household where he/she is continuously told that they are bad, or downloadugly, or useless or whatever negative things they are bombarded with they will usually grow up to have low self esteem, behavior problems, not do as well in school, get into drugs… this is all classic text book science. Children are regularly taken away from parents who abuse them emotionally, or they spend countless years and dollars on therapy as they get older.

If a woman is in a relationship with a man and she is constantly being undermined. If she is told that she doesn’t do anything right, that she is horrible, and stupid and ugly and she should feel lucky that the man is good enough to be with her.. that is abuse… she would be told to leave a relationship like that immediately.

As a mom we are told to encourage our children whenever possible. And not just generic encouragement like “good job!” but specific detailed encouragement like, “you’re a very good listening”, “you did a wonderful job cleaning up” and so forth. We are told that speaking to a child like this over and over will help them have higher self-esteem and grow into better functioning adults.

So why is it that people think that the things that we say to ourselves don’t matter? When I was younger I can remember always saying, “I’m tired” all the time. My father used to get so annoyed by that… “of course you’re tired… you keep telling yourself that you are”. imagesIn my tween years I would write on my books “I love Billy” or whomever.. over and over.. and my dad would point out that it was a form of brainwashing.

BRAINWASHING… think about that… what we tell ourselves over and over we are actually brainwashing ourselves to believe. So… if we are always thinking.. “I’m fat.. I’m ugly.. no one will ever love me” guess what our brains are going to believe? Our minds are very powerful things. They control almost everything about ourselves. From our actions to our hormone levels. If our brains believe that we are fat and useless, what do you think will happen to our metabolism? What do you think it will do to our cortisol levels?

We as humans are our minds.. we are our souls.. we are what’s on the inside. If we are constantly abusing ourselves we will become the victims of our own creation.  It takes practice… it takes work.. but we can create a better life with better thoughts. Thoughts lead to action, action leads to change

coaching, Health, Uncategorized

Choose Life!

Have you ever met that person who treats depression like a badge of honor? The person whose whole life is about “woe is me” and “you could never understand how horrible my life is”… well, you’re right. You live in a country with clean water (for the most part), indoor plumbing, heat, electricity… you have internet literally at your fingertips 24/7. You have access to healthcare, whether or not you can afford it, it’s illegal for an ER to turn someone away. They have to save your life. So yes… I will never understand how horrible your life is.

I have one of those “friends”. He’s an on again off again recovering addict… it’s not even a physical addiction.. it’s a “ugh.. my life sucks because I’m not 17, popular and rich” kind of addiction. He can go months without picking up but then he gets bored or annoyed at something and he spends the next week high.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I have no problems with letting off a little steam. I don’t mind a glass or two of wine here and there, but this is straight out non-functioning garbage. He’s on disability because his life is soooooo bad. So he doesn’t have to work. He lives at home and pays a small rent, but doesn’t really worry about the basics like groceries and toilet paper, because mom’s got that covered.

He’s in school… again… he changes majors every couple years so that he doesn’t actually have to graduate and start working, and when I ask why he doesn’t just get a certificate in his field of choice (which is computers and pretty much all you need for most jobs now a days) he has no answer. I asked what he would do if disability didn’t pay for his schooling.. he said “probably just rob places”.

I really don’t understand people who really don’t want to be happy. This man has been in therapy for YEARS. Yet, when I ask him what his therapist says about his anger management issues (kicking over a grill because it’s having problems lighting is not normal behavior) he says that he’s never brought it up… REALLY?!?! What do you talk about in therapy? How your fantasy football team is letting you down?

The thing that gets me the most is his hypocrisy. He knows other addicts or reads about other addicts online and hears stories about them losing custody of their kids.They are ODing with the child in the backseat or letting the child wander off not fed, not dressed… what ever and he goes on about how disgusting they are. They don’t deserve those children. They should be in jail.. so on and so forth… the problem is… he’s a dad. He has a son. His son never knows which father he’s going to see. The happy go lucky man who likes to play, or the angry violent monster who kicks his toys. He honestly doesn’t think that it’s HIS problem because no one understands how bad his life is.. and he has every right to be moody. He also feels that he doesn’t have to be responsible because his son’s mother has custody and does a great job.

I don’t understand. I don’t understand why people choose to be miserable. I don’t understand why given tools, like therapy, meditation, exercise, medication… people choose to just stay in their own way. This friend’s old therapist told him that he should get outside more… just get some fresh air… nope… he was told to try journaling… nope… try meditation… positive affirmations… retraining thoughts… nope nope nope. He was put on anti-depressants… nope.. that took a while to kick in, and made him feel better, but it didn’t make him feel high, so what’s the point…

I do understand that people need to want to change for themselves in order to actually change… what I don’t understand is why people choose not to.

coaching, Health, parenting

That’s not bullying.. that’s assault!

This is not a typical whiny old person rant… I am dead serious. What is wrong with kids today. I just read an article about a 10 year old boy who was set on fire by one of his classmates. SET ON FIRE!!! How does that happen? Who in their right mind thinks that it’s ok to SET SOMEONE ON FIRE?!?!?!

kaydenI just don’t get it. I have never been one of those people who was all up in arms about bullying. I’ve never approved, even as a kid, but always kind of thought that it was a right of passage. I grew up in the 80s when kids were stuffed in lockers and lunch money was taken. Classic bullies like you saw on TV. I always thought they were jerks, and my dad always taught me to stand up to a bully and that “nothing hurt like a punch in the nose”. It really was kid stuff.

Setting someone on fire is not kid’s stuff. Nor is pouring superglue on someone’s head and causing burns, nor is shooting up a school. I just don’t understand what has happened. I had to go to an “Active Shooter Drill” at my son’s preschool this past week. Seriously?!?!? This is the new generation?

I am not even sure who to blame for this. Some are blaming parents, some the media, some the parents for letting their kids watch the media.. there’s movies and video games and all the like, but really? My dad grew up watching cowboys and Indians, he didn’t blaze through the school with a shot gun. I grew up watching Star Wars, I didn’t run through the town with a blaster… though at least if I did, I wouldn’t actually hit anyone.

Violence is not a new concept in entertainment. Before movies and TV there were books4c0e85d8762200be32f31f1c6f5c61c7 and stories. Death and destruction was par for the course. Have you ever read the true Grimm fairy tales? I had nightmares from Edgar Allen Poe, there was Shakespeare and Homer and on and on… but there has never been such a violent generation.

The scary thing is violence isn’t just the bullies, the victims are seeing it as their only way out. Most school shootings are perpetuated by those who were bullied and then there’s the suicides, which is violence to ones self. Just google “kids commit suicide for bullying” and pages come up. And these aren’t angsty 16 year-old’s, they are 13, 11 and even 9! At nine I was still playing with dolls! How can this actually be reality?

People talk about the mental health system failing, but these kids have barely hit puberty. They’re still getting stickers from their pediatrician for being a “good boy/girl”. Are we going to have to start psychological testing in pre-school? I am normally not one to blame parents. I understand how difficult it is. I am a single mom. I was raised by a single dad. No one can be there 24/7, but come on, you have to see something. I’m not saying it’s the parents fault that the child has killed other’s or themselves. I’m saying that we, as parents, are the first line of defense.

If you see that your kid is moody, or withdrawing, or having trouble you know it. Don’t just pretend it away. If you hear about your kid being nasty or mean to other’s step in. Don’t just assume that “kids will be kids” because kids are not kids anymore. They are lost and disturbed. If you don’t have the answers, that’s ok, that’s not your job.. but talk to the teachers, talk to the guidance counselor at school Most people have insurance today, therapy is covered.

I understand that there is a stigma behind therapy and people don’t want to feel or be treated like there’s something wrong with them… but that has to stop! Even if you, as the parent start going to a family therapist first for ideas on how to help your child and then ask your child to join you. Then they will think it is more about you than them. I, personally started my son in therapy about a month ago and he’s only 3. He has been through a lot of loss in his short life (my father, who we lived, with passed away, and my son’s father is not very consistent). When it was time for my son to start pre-school I wanted help with how to deal with the separation anxiety that he was going to experience.

It is pretty much common knowledge that most bullies are just people with their own self-esteem problems who are trying to make themselves feel better by putting others down. It 12033164_499509056920652_6337032704963096023_n-600x800is clear that we, as a nation, are not raising strong independent kids with healthy self esteem. Bullying, violence, drugs, suicide… these are not “normal” childhood behaviors. We need to stop letting society, the media and video games take responsibility for our children’s actions. Again, I’m not blaming parents, I’m encouraging them to help. Teach your kids right from wrong, if you don’t feel the TV is helping, shut it off. If you see your kid being a little ass, correct the behavior. Not just with punishment, but ask them why they treated someone that way. Talk to them about empathy, and sympathy…

Parents are not just there to feed and shelter our children to ensure they live to adulthood. We are there to raise high functioning members of society so they can contribute to, not just consume from society.

coaching, Health, parenting, Uncategorized

The blame game

So I was talking to one of my friends who is a recovering drug addict. We were discussing some of the people in his AA/NA programs and he was amazed at the fact that a lot of them don’t have any real goals in life. I was amazed by the fact that he was amazed by this.

4127653707_7476ea3ccd_bAddicts aren’t really known for being goal oriented (unless you count the goal of getting a fix. He was talking about this one particular friend who has decided to start a club of sorts for his addict friends. In theory it sounds like a good idea, not the way he’s implementing it, but the concept in general. It’s basically getting a group of addicts together and agreeing to be there for one another. If anyone needs a ride to a meeting or someone to talk to, that type of thing. Then he was talking about expanding it to an outreach program. Talking to troubled kids and the like…. again, sounds like a fabulous idea…

Here’s the catch. The friend who is looking to start the program isn’t really sober. I mean, he’s sometimes sober… he can go for periods of time being sober, but as soon as anything happens in his life he jumps head first of the wagon. On top of that he has severe issues with relationships. He just got out of jail for stalking and harassing an ex… this does not really feel like the type of person that should be teaching others about sobriety and living well sober.

When I mentioned this to my friend, he started with the excuses, “well, it’s not really his fault, he has severe abandonment issues… his childhood was…. ” blah blah blah. I stopped listening at that point. Your childhood is not a reasonable answer for your choices. It is a pathetic excuse to blame others. Now I am in no way perfect. I admit that. I picked up a lot of bad eating habits from my father growing up as I have discussed previously, but once I became an adult… maybe not the moment I turned 18… but 25, 30… so on… my parents mistakes were not my problem.. my own were.

This guy with the abandonment issues (because he was put into foster care as a child) has gone on to put one child up for adoption and has another that sees him bouncing in and out of jail and rehabs. Those are his choices. There are plenty of people who have had screwed up childhoods who turn out just fine. I, personally, am so sick of an entire society who blames everyone else for their choices and actions.

My childhood was not perfect. My mother was schizophrenic. There were horrible custody battles, at one point my parents had a literal tug of war battle over me in the middle of the street. When I did live with my mother she took us to religious communes where, since we didn’t live with out father, anyone was allowed to punish us as they wished. For a while we even lived in a car. It didn’t stop once my dad finally got custody. My mother kidnapped us, police were called to the house and my school.. all kinds of things happened, but none of that made me a victim. All of that made me stronger and more aware of my own actions.

As an adult I have taken in other people’s children when the mom wasn’t able to care for them, and now I am a full-time mom to my son, while still running my own business. People make their own choices. If they hate the way they were treated by someone else or society or however they feel wronged, it is not their job to cry about why they deserve more, it’s their responsibility to make sure they don’t repeat the actions, and their right to have a better life.

If you blame others for your problems then you are giving them control over your life. The only person who can fix your life is you!



coaching, Health

The Obesity Business

The interesting thing about the new Lane Bryant’s ad is the models they chose to use. They are trying to promote that big is beautiful, and I get that because that’s their gabourey-sidibebusiness, but the funny thing is that they only used one really big woman, a woman who is famous for playing a really big woman and a woman who has worked hard and decided to lose weight since that movie.

The majority of the women used in the commercial say that they are a size 14, which, though technically is plus sized, is also sold in most “regular sized” stores. The women are not obese, they are mostly curvy.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t think that anyone should be shamed for anything. I don’t

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think that overweight people are ugly or gross, but I do know that being overweight is unhealthy. This ad seriously sends a mixed message. A message that it’s ok to be “fat”… which it’s really not, but uses women who are either still within the healthy parameter and a woman who has realized that her weight was actually a bad thing and has chosen to become more healthy.

Ad campaigns like this are very difficult. Obviously Lane Bryant would love the obesity epidemic to continue… it’s their bread and butter, so to speak, but they are actually using healthy people to tell others that it’s ok to not be healthy. This is why society is so screwed up. No one wants to be responsible for themselves, no one wants to think about how their actions affect the future. “It’s ok to be obese because I’m still beautiful”. Yes, yes you can still be beautiwilliamperryful at any size, yes a little roll when you sit down is completely normal. No, you do not have to be a stick to be attractive.
The girl who is on the cover of Sports Illustrated is correct, she did open eyes of many. There are many people who say that you can’t be athletic and not be skinny, but anyone who has ever seen a real athlete knows that’s not true. Most athletes have a lot of muscle and even a little big of healthy body weight.. that is completely normal. The problem with campaigns like this is not that it’s promoting self esteem. The problem is that it’s comparing healthy and curvy with obesity and saying it’s all the same. It’s not. We need a campaign that says healthy is beautiful!