Energizer Inspirations

Note:  ‘Energizer Inspirations’ are designed to provide inspiration and motivation in your daily life. If  an inspiration resonates with you and you are ready to  to make changes in your life please contact Positive Goals & Solutions on  0414 511 455 or email info@positivegoalsandsolutions.com.au

How to Be Assertive Without Alienating Your Partner

Understand FeelngsAsking for what you want—and setting boundaries around what you don’t want—is a key life skill. But sometimes in our enthusiasm to practice this skill, we over-do our own assertiveness and end up with a partner who shuts down, gets angry or feels resentful. Here are four tips for developing your assertiveness in a way that will actually strengthen, deepen and enrich your relationship—thus avoiding the “alienation trap”:

1. Get Clear.
Being assertive starts with knowing what you are—and aren’t—willing to be, do, or have. For many of us, coming to this knowledge is a real task unto itself. Here, it may be useful to ask: “In an ideal world, what would I like to happen?” Focusing on an ideal outcome opens our minds, prevents us from falling into passivity or “victim-thinking,” and helps us get really clear on what we want and don’t want.

2. Set Boundaries.
Once you know what outcome you need (or want), share it with your partner. Pay attention to the way stating your boundary feels in your body. With practice, you can actually sense when you’re hitting the “sweet spot.” It can feel really pleasurable, even exhilarating, to express your needs or desires out loud. Phrases like “such and such doesn’t work for me” are simple ways of being assertive while maintaining connection with your partner.

3. Make a Regular Habit of Stating Your Needs and Desires.
You can build your assertiveness the same way you build any muscle: exercise. Practice speaking up about your needs, big or small, on a daily basis. When you speak up about things that are less controversial—such as where to go to dinner, requesting help unloading the dishwasher or what TV program to watch—both you and your partner get used to your assertiveness. It becomes easier for you to practice and for your partner to hear. Also, when bigger issues come along, you and your partner will have a healthy process in place for dealing with differences in needs, and you’ll have greater confidence in the resilience of your partnership.

4. Give as Much as You Get.
Assertiveness is a two-way street. If you want your boundaries to be respected, you must return the courtesy to your partner. If she doesn’t want you to use the bathroom when she’s in the shower, don’t. If he asks you to give him a half an hour after work before you talk and connect, respect that. When it comes to following through on a partner’s reasonable request, actions really do speak louder than words.

If your partner isn’t respecting your boundaries even though you’ve set them clearly, it may be time for professional help for you and/or your relationship. Contact Rosie at Positive Goals & Solutions today. Mobile: 0414 511 455.

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Owning Your Success

Owning Your SuccessEver notice that some people always have an excuse for their failures? The economy is bad, the weather isn’t cooperating, or there isn’t enough time. Whatever the challenge and however things turn out, they always have an excuse. The problem with this kind of thinking is that if you never own your failures, you can never truly own your successes.

Understanding our failures is important.  It’s how we grow. Having an excuse for our failures only keeps us stuck.

In the same vein, acknowledging and affirming your successes helps you to succeed even more.

Think about a time when you were successful – at the “top of your game.” Perhaps you won a buckle at the county rodeo, or topped the charts in the fifth grade spelling bee. You might have run a 5K race in your personal best time, or helped a senior citizen apply for assistance. What made you successful?  What skills and talents did you use?   How can you apply those same principles or use those same talents in other areas of your life?

Our actions, beliefs and behaviors are the key to success and to failure. Some people stare at the high jump bar and think “That’s too high for me.” Others stare at the same bar and think, “I wonder if I could jump higher?”

How can you jump a little higher today?

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How Well Do You Maintain Balance?

If trying to maintain balance in your life makes you feel like a tightrope walker, you’re not alone. Most of us have so many demands on our time and energy, life can feel like a three-ring circus. Take this quiz to see how well you are meeting responsibilities, while also recognizing and fulfilling personal needs and wants.

True False

T        F            1. The only way I can successfully manage my life is to take care of myself physically and emotionally.

T        F            2. Nurturing myself enlarges my capacity to help others.

T        F            3. I eat healthfully and exercise regularly.

T        F            4. I get check-ups, go to the dentist, and take preventative precautions.

T        F            5. I set aside personal, quiet time for myself, whether I’m meditating or simply letting my thoughts drift.

T        F            6. I experience the gifts of each season: ice skating, sledding, bundled-up beach walks; gardening, hiking, more time outside; camping, swimming, barbeques; harvesting the bounty, gathering wood, spending more time inside.

T        F            7. Creativity nurtures me, too. I do what I love, whether that’s cooking, drawing, painting, writing, dancing, singing or another creative pursuit.

T        F            8. Reaching out to others enriches my life. I spend quality time with family and friends.

T        F            9. Contributing to the world provides connection and purpose, so I give my time, energy and experience where it is most useful.

T        F           10. I notice and heed the emotional signals that tell me I’m out of balance: irritability, overwhelm, resentment.

T        F           11. If I feel that I’m catching a cold, I realize I may have stressed my immune system with overactivity, so I stop and take care of myself.

T        F           12. When I need or want to, I say no to requests for my time.

T        F           13. I listen to and honor the requests my body makes for such things as a nap, a walk, green vegetables, hot soup.

T        F           14. If I have something planned for myself, I don’t just toss that aside when someone makes a request of me.

T        F           15. I’m busy, but I find time to do the things I want to do.

T        F           16. I’m happy. I regularly experience well-being, contentment, even joy.

If you answered false more often than true, you may want to take a look at the questions to which you answered false and see if you can incorporate something of its message into your life. Please don’t hesitate to call if you’d like to make changes to your lifestyle.  0414 511 455

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