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Know Thyself Blog

Know Thyself…is a quote from Socrates, in fact the full quote is ‘To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom’. While Socrates was credited with this insight it was in fact Aristotle, his teacher, who gave birth to this concept.

Another worthy quote from the Greek philosopher (384-322BC) which ties into this is ‘Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all’

And this is the crux of it all, the two are linked – brain and emotions. For every thought there is a corresponding emotion which has an impact on our actions. You might be saying that’s not the case with me and some thoughts might not resonate or even register. But consider it….think about something…your parents, kids, friends, a fun time, a terrible time, a flower, a scent, a memory. What come’s up…warm feelings, emotions such as happiness, anger, a postcard image of that time, golden light, flowers, taste. Good or bad, our thoughts are hot wired to our emotions.

So here’s the rub. With 60,000 random thoughts every day do you know what you are thinking?

These thoughts represent a mix of unconscious and conscious belief systems, cultural and family norms thrown in, patterns of positive and negative thinking, old wounds, memories. If our thoughts have an impact on our feelings, they also impact on our actions.

We choose our thoughts. This can impact positively or negatively depending on which thoughts we choose, impact on how we see are ourselves and on how we impact on those around us. What we choose to think about or even more important – how we decide to think about things can prevent worry, spinning out on negative thought patterns and repeating old learned behaviour. Choosing your thoughts allow some perspective and positive intervention enabling you to feel and create the actions and results you want.

So what are you thinking?

http://bright-lights-coaching.com/

Accredited Executive & Life Coach

Accredited by the World Association Of Coaching with Neuroscience

QQI Award Professional Coaching Practice & Ethics


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Coaching For Covid

We find ourselves in uncertain times….times that can impact on the way we think, feel and therefore live our lives.

Some may be finding it difficult to regulate stress levels, eating and staying productive. Brain fog or difficulty making decisions can be a challenge. Current circumstances may be forcing some to look for a career change, which was unexpected. Is this a pipedream or an opportunity.

The impact on our freedom, the uncertainty of what’s next and the underlying levels of stress affects us all. Take control of your life, your purpose and your thinking through coaching. Get clarity. Identify what you really want and take actionable steps towards owning your life and fulfilling your purpose.

Some simple tips to stay present….

We get approximately 60,000 random thoughts per day. Some positive, some negative. Think of the brain like a computer, quality in, quality out. It serves you what you feed it.

We choose our thoughts – be aware of your thoughts and notice if you are choosing negative thoughts to listen to.

Ask yourself ‘is it true’. Byron Katie The Work https://thework.com/ beats the inner critic or and even worry by asking this simple question. Her quotes are worth the cost of the book alone. The basis are 4 simple questions and are 100% responsible for the absence of my brain ‘spinning out’ anymore. Game changer.

Focus. Start and complete one task at a time. Multi tasking depletes focus. Congratulation yourself, tick boxes or just feel the pleasure of getting stuff done.

Don’t forget who you are and what is important to you. If possible, spend time on the things that make you happy – people, hobbies, nature, sport, you know what they are.

Meditation – yes I know, people always go on about how good this stuff is. It can calm the nervous system by restoring the energy centres and healing the heart through gratitude practice, help brain focus and eliminate negative thinking. If you haven’t found one you that resonates, keep trying, there are so many free meditations available. My personal favourite is Dr Joe Dispenza’s Blessing Of The Energy Centers. It costs $25 https://bit.ly/39IyqSU

Lastly, be kind. It can be underrated and considered a bit soft. We all wear masks in life – and I don’t mean the pandemic kind. Those masks we present to the world as we would have it see us. But we never know what the other person is managing or how they are coping. Old habits of smiling and a gentle hand on the arm is not possible at the moment. But a kind word can be a worth so much. Harold Kushner said it best “When you are kind to others, it not only changes you, it changes the world”.

Tracy O’Keeffe
not a writer, just passionate about coaching


http://bright-lights-coaching.com/

Accredited Executive & Life Coach

Accredited by the World Association Of Coaching with Neuroscience

QQI Award Professional Coaching Practice & Ethics

Goal Setting Like A Professional

I’m not going to waste your time…let’s get straight to it…as a coach goal setting is an integral part of what we do, assisting people in identifying where they are and helping them build a unique plan that enables them where they want to go – in life.

One of the most popular goal setting models we use in coaching is SMART CAR. It brings a clear structure into goal setting.

  • Specific – as many details about the goal as possible.
  • Measurable – how many elements are measurable?
  • Action Based – actions required to achieve goal.
  • Realistic – is this plan possible to implement?
  • Time Bound – choose deadline, client to contract with themselves.
  • CAR – commitment, accountability, reward.
    • What are you willing to commit to?
    • Who is going to hold you accountable?
    • What audacious reward will you give yourself when you achieve your goal?

A very useful tool when locking in the detail.  So there you go! You now have a tool to set some goals.  And well that’s the point – anyone can set goals. This tool is only used at the end of the coaching process and when the goal is definable.  If it was this easy we would all be achieving our goals like ninjas.

So why do some people make goals and stick to them and others don’t?  Why do some give up halfway or self-sabotage when their goal is in sight?  Because for so many of us there are unforeseen elements at work thwarting our efforts. The best will in the world won’t help if you are unaware of your self-limiting beliefs. Fixed mindset, bad habits, lack of boundaries, people pleasing, negative emotion or self-talk, lack of understanding one’s values, culture and your subconscious are just some of the elements that can prevent you from achieving your potential.  Jeez – it seems a lot, but all of us have a mix of these within our makeup which can result in not being able to reach our life purpose or potential. In upcoming posts I will help to explain and demystify these in more detail. Rest assured regardless of what is holding you back, one to one coaching can help you to unlock the barriers and realise your dreams.

Sometimes at the beginning of the coaching process it’s hard for a client to reach for what they truly want.  Sometimes it’s not something they can verbalise or even allow themselves to dream.  Often at the start of the process the client will ask for something smaller not realising what they are capable of. This is where the art of coaching comes in, through dialogue armed with the coaching process (co-active coaching, skills, tools, competencies) the coaching goal often changes to something more meaningful, see http://bright-lights-coaching.com/2020/06/28/why-coaching/ for reasons why people choosing coaching.  A coaching session might start with goals like making a big decision or choosing a different career but ultimately it may become about being fulfilled…clients soon realise change is possible.

If you think about it – setting goals is done in the head and often are unattainable unless they are done with a combination of head and heart. Understanding where you are stuck or what needs to change is a reflective process, best done with a professional guide.    When we coach, we coach the whole person.

Some help in getting started when choosing a goal ask yourself…

  • What are your deepest beliefs in this area of your life? Are these yours or someone else’s. Are they outdated?
  • What do you truly want and why do you want it?
  • What are you willing to do to get it?

Or choose a life coach who will aid you in unlocking the blocks. Commit to yourself and realise your potential.

Tracy O’Keeffe
not a writer, just passionate about coaching

Are you living your best life?

Accredited Executive & Life Coach

Accredited by the World Association Of Coaching with Neuroscience

QQI Award Professional Coaching Practice & Ethics

Why Life Coaching?

When I tell people I’m a life coach invariably they scratch their head and make some vague reference to counselling or mentoring.  They might have the word ‘goal’ somewhere in their description.  They have heard of it, know it’s got ‘good stuff’ but have no idea of what it really means. 

This post will tell you…what is coaching, why is it growing in popularity, what motivates people to choose it, why should everyone do it once in their lives. 

What is coaching?

The International Coaching Federation (ICF) defines coaching as:

An interactive process that helps individuals and organisations improve their performances and achieve extraordinary results.

Sounds wonderful but what does it mean?  Coaching promises a shift in thinking and being.  Sounds like hard work?  Not at all, what better fun than to invest some time in yourself. Be honest…when was the last time you gave yourself time to really think about your life?

Using a combination of tools, techniques and skills coaching offers you an opportunity to step off the grid for a moment. To have a conversation about what you really want in life with a personal guide who is trained to provide you with perspective and clarity to enable you to get to where you want to go.  This 4 x session process gives you the space you to step back in with a new understanding of your part in it all.  I liken it to an osteopath for the mind! 

4 valuable, enriching, illuminating conversations.  Every conversation is different because each client is different and your life is different.  However 4 x sessions can change your perspective, energy and zest for life, if you let it!

Why is it growing in popularity?

Coaching is now the second-fastest growing profession in the world, rivaled only by information technology

Establishing Key Differences between Coaching and Counselling. Jan 18, 2010. Aoife Harrington (MSc, BA Psych,  Reg. Psychol PsSI). https://bit.ly/31Znjlm

In the 2016 ICF Global Coaching Summary it was estimated that there were approximately 53,300 professional coaching practitioners worldwide. This represents a growth of 14.11% in 4 years.  

What motivates people to choose it?

People participate or seek out coaching because they want things to be different. They are looking for change or they have important goals to reach. 

Co-Active Coaching. Henry Kimsey-House, Karen Kimsey-House, Phillip Sandahl, Laura Whitworth.

There tends to be two reasons people choose coaching – life and career.

They might have all the trappings of success but aren’t fulfilled.  Sometimes its peace of mind they desire or more fulfillment.  It could be for a better work/life balance.  Usually it means they are ready for change.

Why should everyone do it once in their lives?

While coaching might be focused on an outcome or a goal, clients can find the path to achieving these can be more rewarding than the goals themselves.   It might start out with a business focus but migrates to bigger topics like core values, boundaries and purpose.

Coaching offers an alternative to counselling or mentoring.  It provides a perspective to understand who we are and why we do what we do.  It enables us to move forward by establishing clear goals with vision and purpose. Coaching assesses where you are now, looks at where you want to be and helps you to build a bridge to get there. 

Why coaching? Because the results will change your life.

Tracy O’Keeffe
not a writer, just passionate about coaching

Are you living your best life?

Accredited Executive & Life Coach

Accredited by the World Association Of Coaching with Neuroscience

QQI Award Professional Coaching Practice & Ethics