How Self Coaching Works

Warning: I use the F word in this post.  If that offends you…either ignore it or quit reading now.

I’m going to give you a peek at what self-coaching looks like.  My goal is that every client I work with can employ this after working with me as the first line of offense when their optimal life is threatened.

Here is me, right now:

Some days fucking suck.

That’s not really what I mean.

What I mean is there are days I must look a whole hell of a lot harder for the upside than others.  I always find it because I want to.  I really want to believe in the best aspects of this world we live in.  I think it’s possible we live in a world where people can be super chill and respect each other and act on their beliefs.

I see a fuckton (yes it’s a word) of bullshit around me.  And through that lens of optimism I choose how I handle my engagement with that.

Received some crap from my kid’s soccer club yesterday that really set me off.  The background is that my son chose to screw around for the last year or so and not engage at his very best in his sport of choice.   Simultaneously, the club decided to institute an “A” and “B” team philosophy for the U11 age group.

I’m all in on competition.  Seriously – give me a challenge and I will prove how ridiculous your skepticism at my abilities is. I was less than thrilled at the prospect of my son at 10 being potentially told he wasn’t good enough for the A team.  We talked mental strategy and physical commitment and he went for it.  He was assigned to the B team.

Devastation. Tears. Confusion.  Questioning.

And he was pretty upset too.

Through his tears he asked me what he did wrong.  How the fuck am I supposed to answer that?

We connected with his coach who had some encouraging and constructive words for him and we developed a mindset strategy for moving past this.  We also talked application of that strategy in a series of upcoming practices, a tournament he was participating in and the multiple soccer camps he requested for this summer.

(I am currently selling body parts to finance all of this. Anyone need a pinky finger?)

He played.  He played like I haven’t seen him play in a while. His fire was back. Go figure…my kid needed a challenge to get him fired up and re-engaged.  He had been bored. I get that and I can work with it.

I’m feeling good about all of this.

Then yesterday I get the rosters for the teams for the fall in his age group.  His team doesn’t have a full roster and doesn’t even have enough to field a team.  Exactly how is this supposed to work?  Parents are jumping to conclusions all over the place.  I am sitting back and choosing my engagement.  Parents are now cancelling their commitments.  They are pulling their kids.

Holy cow.

Should I?  Nope, not my way. I don’t do things simply because others are.

I wait to see how the club director will respond.  I am disappointed.  There is no plan shared.  In fact, we are told that the rosters were created without a plan.  That they are working on one after their break and will share it at the parent meeting in 2.5 weeks.

Not good enough.  Not good enough by even a little bit.

What now?  How do I coach myself through this?  Well, I start with looking at what is true here:

  1. My kid earned the spot.
  2. The club director doesn’t have a plan, though he promises one.
  3. My kid loves, loves this sport. He committed to growing through this situation.

The values I am using to filter this:

  • Authenticity
  • Honesty
  • Commitment
  • Passion
  • Freedom
  • Transformation
  • Growth
  • Professionalism

What skeptical, cynical me thinks:

This is complete bullshit, find a new club.

This lack of communication means there was no plan and now they’ve been caught so they are scrambling.

What you allow will continue.

Intuitive me says:

He will thrive in a new environment

Yes, he earned that spot, but he also deserves more from himself and from his support system.

Questions still lingering:

What would a move to a new club (assuming I can find a roster spot) do for him – what message would it send?

Will the plan be good enough?

Actions I will take:

  1. Be direct with my response to the club director. I expect more. He needs to know that.
  2. Investigate other options for him to play if the plan isn’t satisfactory.
  3. Discuss with his father.
  4. Consult with his coach.
  5. Love and support him no matter what.

If you have a near term threat to your optimal lifestyle, take it through those analysis steps (the ones in bold).  Consider what actions you need to take to resolve it. These threats aren’t always immediately contained.  Sometimes they take a bit of work.  Working through them using your authentic, best self is way better than just reacting. 

Coach yourself.  And if coaching yourself doesn’t work, get a coach. And hey…I’m a coach, you could apply for a lackluster to limitless session with me and we’d see if it’s a good fit by working through what’s on your near-term threat list.

photo jun 20, 8 27 31 am

I am a certified personal and executive coach ruthlessly focused on helping people live awesome lives.  I spent a large chunk of my life pursuing other people’s ideas of success and while those experiences were sublime in some cases, they weren’t the “more” I was seeking and I just never felt full. In 2011, I made the commitment to live life on my terms and everything changed. The life I love today was created.

My background is 10 years in the US Army as an officer, 10 years in Corporate America and then the last 6 running my own business. I have deployed twice in combat scenarios, worked with foreign governments and military and worked extensively in international business.  I have an undergraduate in Criminology, an MBA and certification in Positive Psychology. I have led organizations from 3-400 and love developing people and helping them create their next steps in life and work. 

I am founder of No Limits Life Empowerment Institute as well we a working glass artist, Reiki Master,  Partner in Shaman Grocer in Iowa City, and Co-founder of the Midwest Reiki Festival.    My favorite time is spent doing anything soccer related with my aspiring world cup soccer player, 10 year old Alexander.  I am also a pretty big fan of gaming (PS4) with my partner Craig while solving the world’s social problems. 

 

 

 

 

When I Grow Up….

By age 30 I had ended one career and started another and still didn’t know what I wanted to be when I grew up.  I thought success was finding a career path that provided relatively good income and room to move up – one already laid out with simple steps to move through – like a board game. I was discovering life hadn’t laid those steps out as neatly as I thought and it didn’t feel as successful as I thought it would.

Up until age 30, things had been appearing and I had been saying yes to them – somewhat blindly.  In 1992 I went to college because it was the next natural step to living a prosperous life.  In 1995, the US Army ROTC office at CSU Fresno called and offered me a full scholarship to complete my education and I said yes – with little thought.  I commissioned active duty and went off to be an Army officer.  I didn’t have a grand plan on what that would look like, but turned out to be pretty good at it.  I consistently did well and got great assignments as a result.

When I decided to leave, it was because I was getting the first rumblings from within: life was more than just a job.  I wanted a lifestyle different than the Army was providing.  In a bid to retain me, I was offered the opportunity to work with the most elite support command in the Army…still I had to go. The voice within was getting louder.

I went to a job fair and accepted a job in the Midwest with a utility company.  I joke that I accepted it in a fever induced haze – the product of contracting bronchitis while on a whirlwind interview tour across the US and being unable to go to any additional interviews.  My dogs and I moved to Iowa in February 2004 and I soon wondered when I’d be leaving.

It turned out it was here I’d settle on what I wanted to be when I grew up.  I’d discover life didn’t have to keep happening to me, I could create my life. I could develop a vision for the future and put it into action one step at a time.  Others were out walking their paths, sometimes lined up single file one after the other doing the same thing.  But me, I wanted to forge my way through on my own path.

I had this same mentality as a kid: I grew up in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.  My backyard was literally the Sierra National Forest.  One of my favorite things was to follow a trail for a bit, then strike out on my own – see what might be just beyond sight from the established path.  I often trekked up and down the creek behind our house finding new ways to get to different vantage points and finding fresh perspective.

This mindset came back to me as I began to question the path I was following others on after the birth of my son.  In 2007 he arrived 3 months prematurely and I was gifted time as I cared for him while he finished his development in the incubator in the NICU. I had time to consider my life.

I realized I needed a new vantage.  I needed to explore some alternate paths.  I needed fresh perspective on who I was and what I was doing.

I took some courses.  I read some new books.  I dabbled in different things.

For too long. I got seriously restless.

Then I got serious.  I hired a coach.

Hiring a coach gave me the path to clarity, accountability and commitment.  It also confirmed, yes, my life is more than my job.  I am here to live a full, rich, passion filled life and the routine to retirement gig wasn’t cutting it.

Are you asking, “what do I want to do with my life?” and taking free course or download after free course or download and not finding answers? A coach may be your answer.

If you are signing on for e-courses and not finishing them – you aren’t alone. I recently read upwards of 97% of people don’t finish them. (that fact isn’t verified, but I could see how it can be true).

Are you bored with life, or busy with bullshit?  Are you doing things that kinda suck? Are you doing them out of some sort of obligation anyway? You may need support to say yes to things that rock.

Hiring a coach gave me the courage to confront what I was really looking for in life and the confidence to take some action toward it. Now, 7 years later, I still have a coach.  My coaches have changed focus and people over the years, but I will always value coaching support and perspective.

If you know you are capable of more but feel restricted by external forces, a coach can help you develop the skills, attitudes and behaviors you need to free yourself.

And hey, I am a coach.  I might be able to help you like I have helped many others find the freedom they want – the freedom to be and live the way that really crave. It’d be super cool to have a conversation with you and see if it’s a good fit for where you are and what you want in life.

At a minimum, I can point you to some near-term actions and resources to find freedom if coaching with me isn’t right for you now – no worries.  I have told lots of coaches no along the way, it’s cool.

Your Challenge Now:

In your journal complete this sentence: When I Grow Up….

Then,  apply for a lackluster to limitless energizer session with me – let’s see if it’s a good fit for your initial foray into freedom.

 

photo jun 20, 8 27 31 am

Jennifer Murphy

I am a certified personal and executive coach ruthlessly focused on helping people live awesome lives.  I spent a large chunk of my life pursuing other people’s ideas of success and while those experiences were sublime in some cases, they weren’t the “more” I was seeking and I just never felt full. In 2011, I made the commitment to live life on my terms and everything changed. The life I love today was created.

I am founder of No Limits Life Empowerment Institute as well as a working glass artist, Reiki Master,  Partner in Shaman Grocer in Iowa City, and Co-founder of the Midwest Reiki Festival.    My favorite time is spent doing anything soccer related with my aspiring world cup soccer player, 10 year old Alexander.  I am also a pretty big fan of gaming (PS4) with my partner Craig while solving the world’s social problems.  email me at jennifer@nolimitslife.guru and share your story.

 

Photo by Benjamin Combs on Unsplash

How is Your Health?

In the year preceding my departure from my last corporate job I had walking pneumonia 5 times.  Once it even came with a bonus kicker of whooping cough.  Steroids, antibiotics and over the counter remedies did nothing to stop it.  Days of working from home, long naps and attempting to power through it made no difference.  I was chronically tired, chronically sniffling, chronically coughing after every word I spoke.  I had put on weight.

In the prior 3 years I had been diagnosed with allergies, GERD, Arthritis, Migraines, more than a few bouts of bronchitis and sinus infections as well as the rarest form of asthma.

I kept thinking…wow, is this really what it’s like to be human?  

Around me I saw the same things happening.  To be sick seemed to be the latest fashion trend.  Everybody I knew seemed to be on something for something. Showing up to work sick was done with a sense of pride, “I’m so dedicated and valuable here I can’t possibly stay home.”

“Seriously, there has to be more.” I remember thinking.

There was.

Recently my Yoga Instructor reminded me of all this.  She looked at me in class and said, “we have been doing this about 10 years and you haven’t aged.”  We talked about why and I am going to share my suspicions with you here. I perceive 3 primary actions driving this outcome:

  1. I changed my diet.

My cravings were for fresher foods, more organic flavors and higher quality. I gave in to them.  I began to buy fresh, local and organic.  Even when my budget became the tightest it ever was, I stuck with it. I found I need less volume when the quality is higher – go figure.

My weight dropped and my stomach issues cleared up almost immediately.  Increasing water helped my headaches begin to fade and my ache from arthritis dissipate. As time went on I found that eating processed foods had an immediate and sever impact on my body:  skin rashes, stomach aches and more.

My diet was a huge step to take in feeling better about my life.

  1. I changed where I spent my energies.

Mentally I had to get straight on what mattered. I developed an exercise called aligning priorities and put it to work for me.  Using it I became very focused on spending resources on what I valued most and saying no to the things misaligned.

What followed was an increase in opportunity to engage with my dreams.  The opportunity to open my business presented itself, I took it.  Changes needed in my relationships became obvious and I made them.  Expired affiliations and loyalties were retired and lower vibration options just went away.

This alignment of energies gave me clear path to yes or no in my life.  Today I ask, “will this get me closer or further away from what I want to do?” as the gatekeeper question.

  1. I changed how I heal myself.

How I heal myself today addresses my entire system.  Rather than running to a doctor for each discomfort, I explore my life holistically. I never seemed to have an easy illness for a doctor anyway.  There was never a “oh you have this” response.  It was always, “well it could be several things”.  Now I know why: my illnesses weren’t just a bug – they were connected on all levels.

Today I work with a holistic chiropractor, Dr. Karly Abel, and view my health primarily through natural and spiritual means.  I consult with healers periodically and go the VA for my annual physical.  In the last 3 years I have had to consult a General Physician once for an illness I could not contain.  It was walking pneumonia.  Rather than just taking the antibiotics and waiting for a cure, I also took stock of my life and found other areas needing to be addressed.

I believe our bodies talk to us about our life choices.  They will tell us when we are off track – the same way our intuition speaks to us.  Therefore, we need to heal not only the physical symptoms, but the emotional and spiritual as well.

Do you recognize yourself in any of this?

Is doing exactly what I do right for you?  Maybe.  Is some degree of it?  Definitely. 

Your diet and how much water you drink is a fundamental building block – your body uses what you put in it – wouldn’t you like it to be the absolute best Mother Nature can create? Fuel yourself with high quality and you body will return high quality energy and output.

Focus your energies on what is most important to you and those things will flourish.  Spend time on the things you value most and you will feel most connected to them.  Feeling connected to those things will inspire you to live in alignment with your purpose and in turn you will feel more freedom.  Your sense of conflict will diminish as you know what you can say yes to and what to turn down.

How you heal matters – we are multi-dimensional.  Treating only one dimension just seems ludicrous. If I ignore a spiritual or emotional pain long enough, it will show up physically.  I bet yours does too.

What is your health currently telling you?  Are you trying diet plan after diet plan?  Are you on a closet full of prescription meds? Are you always hungry and always eating?  Are you shoving emotions down faster than a bag of French Fries? Chances are it goes deeper than conventional methods would explain.

Rebel.  Explore other means. Try a new approach if what you have been doing isn’t working.

The answer to how I haven’t aged in my Yoga Instructors eyes in 10 years is in living a lifestyle I love.  It is encompassing of healthy supportive food, people I love, a career that inspires me and a sense of completeness.  This lifestyle is more than professional success, it’s my entire life of success as I have chosen to define it.

YOU can find this too – you can be the person receiving your ultimate compliment.  You can be the person former acquaintances don’t even recognize and look at in wonder. It is possible for you.

Your challenge:

It’s time to define what lifestyle success means to you – how do you define it? Email me at jennifer@nolimitslife.guru and let me know. I’d love to hear your definition!

photo jun 20, 8 27 31 am

I am Jennifer Murphy, a certified personal and executive coach ruthlessly focused on helping people live awesome lives.  I spent a large chunk of my life pursuing other people’s ideas of success and while those experiences were sublime in some cases, they weren’t the “more” I was seeking and I just never felt full. In 2011, I made the commitment to live life on my terms and everything changed. The life I love today was created.

Apply for a Lackluster to Limitless Energizer Session if you are ready for more independence, freedom and sense of living your real life than you have ever had before. 

 

 

 

 

 

The Complaint I hear Most

The single most common complaint I hear is:      

“I feel like all I do is work”

Or the family person version:

“All I do is work and do things with the family”

What they are really saying is they feel less than fulfilled.  They feel there is more out there.  They feel bored and want more.

Many aren’t sure what they’d do if they could do anything else.  Some have a clear picture of exactly what they’d do.

In both cases, as soon as the possibility of more is approached, resistance flies up like a barricade at a court house parking entry.

Basically, we aren’t happy with what is happening, but when the chance to change pops up, we feel like we can’t.  Pretty messed up right?

About a year ago, I was talking with a former colleague and she was sharing a dream of a business that embraced one of her passions.  As she spoke, she was glowing, literally glowing.  She had the whole idea mapped in her head and described it in such amazing detail that I could see it.  It is a gorgeous idea and she is perfect for it.

Tapping in to her excitement, I asked if she had thought about location.  She had and went on to describe it.

I pushed a little further and asked when.

The reasons why she couldn’t then came tumbling out: obligation to her mortgage, her corporate career, jeopardizing her retirement, her husband’s expectations and the belief that she just couldn’t.

This is a very common story.

The successful professional who wants more, but can’t seem to have it.  The more isn’t always a business idea.  Sometimes it is a desire to be able to sit down and relax at night – without the stress of work preying on them.  It is the desire for a life outside of work that is fun, filled with good friends and experiences that enrich their life, leaving them energized to go to a job they can love more fully since the rest of life is pretty awesome.

When I was hired at my last corporate job, one of the reasons I took the job was something my hiring manager said: “I believe in working to live, not living to work.” For as long as I worked for her, she lived by this.  She was supportive to her team in this philosophy in a corporate environment that didn’t always agree with her on that thought. Despite this awesome environment, I still found myself living to work.

In my years of working in large organizations, as a leader in the US Army and then again in corporate America, I observed three reasons we feel this “all I do is work” feeling:

  1. Society tells us this is the right thing to do, everyone else is so we follow along.
  2. We agree to focus on work temporarily for a big project or busy time then…it never ends and becomes routine.
  3. We never saw a different way: this was what our parents or mentors did, what we perceived was right and we followed the example of those we admired and loved.

 

All three impacted my life.  All three shaped the definition of success I pursued which was aligned primarily around a solid career.  If it enabled some cool stuff in the rest of my life that was great – I saw it as a bonus.

If this is you, you can shift this. 

One day I decided to listen to that calling from within asking for “more”.  Not knowing what “more” was for me, I engaged a life coach who helped me figure it out.  I moved away from living to work and having a life that had a successful career to living a successful life where I have a job I love. I feel the fullness of a lifestyle that supports my continued experience in this world – the experience I get to create anew each day.

How I shifted it:

  1. Engaging help – I got mine from a life coach, like me.
  2. Being open to possibilities and willing to change somethings in my life.
  3. Acknowledging that the life I was living wasn’t my dream life and taking the time to develop the picture of what I wanted.
  4. Taking immediate action to start living that life I wanted.
  5. Continuing to act, even when it was hard.

You can do this too. Are you ready to move beyond the complaint?

Start now.  If you need help, apply for my lackluster to limitless energizer session and we will spend an hour on your plan.

 

photo jun 20, 8 27 31 amHi, I am Jennifer Murphy.  I am a certified personal and executive coach ruthlessly focused on helping people live awesome lives – the ones that include work, but aren’t entirely work.  I spent a large chunk of my life pursuing other people’s ideas of success and while those experiences were sublime in some cases, they weren’t the “more” I was seeking and I just never felt full. In 2011, I made the commitment to live life on my terms and everything changed. The life I love today was created.