Where Will I Find Him (or Her)?

This week I am continuing to answer questions that I get from my clients and readers…

One of the questions I get asked often from people who want an awesome relationship is “Where will I find him (or her)?”

Well, first off I can tell you where you probably won’t find him, and that is in your living room while you are sitting in front of the television set, eating dinner alone.  🙂

I’ve spoken to many women who have had it up to the proverbial here with online dating, and who have at times been very close to deciding that maybe being alone is not all that bad.

I understand that looking for “the one” can be frustrating.

So here are a few things to keep in mind…

  • You have to leave the house and meet people.
  • It helps to let people know you are looking.  This seems obvious to some of you, but there are those of you out there who in your heart of hearts you really want a relationship and yet you haven’t really let that be known to your circle of friends, relatives, and acquaintances.  These are all people who know potential matches for you and have the power to introduce you to them.  Don’t underestimate the power of networking and letting others know what it is you are looking for!
  • And speaking of “knowing what you are looking for”…do you?  Are you very clear on what you want and what you don’t?  Knowing your deal breakers is important.
  • Get a hobby.  Seriously, because if you can find something (or a few things) you really like to do and then find others that are enjoying those things too, you’ll have more opportunities to be with people who have similar interests as you.
  • Do what makes you happy and make the choice to be happy now.  None of this “I’ll be happy when ____” stuff.  This is important.  No one (not even “him”) can “make” you happy.  When you decide to take responsibility for your own happiness (single or otherwise) the Universe will conspire to assist you. And when you feel happy you will experience less stress, that in itself makes you more attractive.
  • Smile! And, be yourself.  You are awesome and there is someone out there for you who will see all of your awesomeness readily and easily.

Love & Magic,

Cindie

Posted in Coaching, Conscious Creation, General, relationships | Leave a comment

5 Tips for Growing Together as a Couple

 

Last week, I promised I’d begin answering the enormous virtual pile of relationship questions I have received from clients and readers.

One of the most commons questions is:

“Now that I am in a relationship, how can we continue to grow together?”

Or some variation on that theme.

First, I want to congratulate you if you are in a relationship and asking this question because it shows intention, maturity, and awareness on your part.

I’d like to give you my top 5 tips for “growing together” as a couple.

1.  Continue to grow on your own.  It may seem counter-intuitive at first, but it’s essential that you are responsible for your own happiness and your own personal growth. Yes, you want to be with someone that you feel happy with, but it is NOT your partner’s responsibility to “make you happy”!  Taking responsibility for your own emotional growth will go a long way in helping you both grow together.

2. Find new things to do together.  It’s okay to have independent interests, just make sure to find some things you both love to do, or see, or enjoy, together.  And then do them! Put them on the calendar; make it a habit to enjoy those activities together. Even the process of discovering new things you both love can be fun and exciting.

Doing what you love is energizing and doing things you love with someone you love will energize the relationship.  And finding new and exciting things in life promotes growth!

3. Be open with each other about how you feel, and decide right now that you will do your best to NOT take things personally. (Yes, this is MUCH easier said than done, I know, but the intention will take you a LONG way).

Yes, being open about how we feel requires us to be vulnerable. It is okay to be vulnerable (and speaking of vulnerable, if you haven’t watched Brene Brown’s TED talk on vulnerability, do it now!)

4.  Learn to be a better listener.  Seriously.  Active listening is a learned skill.  It takes practice.  It isn’t just about waiting your turn to talk (that just makes you a good waiter, not necessarily a good listener.)

5. Recognize the difference between secrecy and privacy.  Respecting each other’s privacy is important. However,  secrecy is not okay.  In addition to damaging relationships, a new study shows that keeping a big secret undermines your chances for happiness in general!

So there you have it!

  • Be responsible for your own happiness and emotions
  • Find some fun things to do together,
  • Make the choice to be open and vulnerable,
  • Become a better listener,
  • Respect each other’s privacy, and no secrets!

Let me know how this post has helped you. I would love for you to share your own tips and thoughts in the comments section.

Love & Magic,

Cindie

 

Posted in Chemistry, General, Personal Growth, relationships | 2 Comments

When Positive Thinking Isn’t Positive

How many legs does a dog have if you call the tail a leg?  Four.  Calling a tail a leg doesn’t make it a leg.  ~Abraham Lincoln


Wait. What? Did I just say that— That positive thinking isn’t always positive?

Yes, I said it. Don’t get me wrong…I have always been an optimist because I definitely prefer optimism over pessimism. However, I still stand by my statement that positive thinking isn’t always positive.

So, when is positive thinking not positive? When it is Optimistic Denial.

So, what is the difference? First of all, let’s consider that positive thinking is really optimal thinking. In other words, finding the good in a situation, recognizing the not so good in a situation, and making conscious choices based in reality.

Optimal thinking can find the opportunity in the experience, even when the experience was less than optimal.

On the other hand, optimistic denial can look a lot like positive thinking, and can masquerade as a positive attitude, but really it is closer to being a big fat lie.

Because optimistic denial won’t be honest about what isn’t working.

Optimistic denial smiles a lot and says things are great when they aren’t great, or just concedes that, “all relationships have problems”, or “every career has its downside”, etc.

On the other hand, optimal thinking allows one to find the best way out of a bad situation while gleaning every possible lesson to be learned from it, while optimistic denial keeps people stuck in difficult relationships and unsatisfying careers.

The truth is, not all relationships have problems, and there are plenty of people who don’t see a downside to their career.

Here’s the thing, we have to be willing to be honest with ourselves about where we are, and how we feel.

Then we can use optimal thinking to move forward and make positive changes.

Here’s to Optimal Thinking,

Cindie

photo credit: Idea Go

Posted in Coaching, General, Life balance, Personal Growth, relationships | 2 Comments

How Gratitude May Be Hindering You

Are you happy? Grateful? Do you realize the distinction between the two?

I read a few articles recently that talked about the link between the two, and went as far as to suggest that gratitude is a stepping stone to being truly happy.

I am wondering if gratitude can be a stumbling block to happiness. I know that might sound crazy, and I am certainly NOT suggesting that we throw gratitude out the window and stop being grateful.

But there is another concept that coupled with gratitude might just make happiness impossible.

The concept of “should”. Yep, those dreaded “shoulds”. I remember having a life changing conversation with a dear friend of mine, a rabbi who has also been a mentor to me. I was really struggling with a certain decision and I said, “I just want to know what I should do.” He looked me in the eye and said, “Oh Cindie, there are no shoulds.” I was speechless for at least a full minute (a stretch for me). It was such a foreign concept to me. No shoulds. He continued, “If you keep thinking that way you’ll end up should-ing all over yourself.”

So the other day I was talking with a good friend about this whole happiness/gratitude distinction. We both recalled times when we were not happy, but did not want to admit it. We would silently go over our laundry list of things that we SHOULD be happy with and leave it at that. This is where the shoulds come in and seriously disempower the gratitude factor.

For instance, picture a person who is not happy in their marriage, and of course no one wants to admit that, so instead they tell themselves “My spouse is a good person, we get along pretty well together, we live in a nice house, we drive nice cars, our kids are good kids, I have a good job, he doesn’t beat me, she doesn’t cheat on me, etc.” and the implication here is “I SHOULD be happy. Who am I to be unhappy when I am so blessed?”
Do you see how the shoulds get in the way here?  We don’t feel we have the right to be unhappy when we have so many “good” things in our life, so we choose to be content by just being grateful.

When we understand that there are no shoulds, we can take a look at what we really want, and move towards happiness, taking gratitude along for extra support.

Don’t throw gratitude out the window, throw out the shoulds instead.

It has been said that happiness is the journey, not the destination. Are you stuck in park because you’ve decided to be content with being grateful? Put it in drive, move towards happy. It might be scary. It might ruffle some feathers. It might seem like a rough ride at first.

Realize that if you allow yourself to be truly happy, whatever that takes, everyone else will be fine too.

Love & Magic,

Cindie


Posted in Coaching, General, Life balance, Personal Growth, relationships | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

To Be or Not to Be

Being VS Doing

(or Why Most of Us Feel Lazy if We Aren’t ‘Doing’ Something)

This past weekend I was happily and lazily spending the morning (ALL morning!) in bed, and enjoying myself by watching two semi-deflated Valentine’s Day helium balloons dance around my room being pushed and pulled by the air current.  It was mesmerizing.

During this very low energy activity I checked my twitter app to find a tweet from a friend that said “Today we all have the choice to march in place and mark time, or move forward and go someplace.  What are you going to do?”

Of course, I’m all for moving forward! In fact my whole business is built on the premise that I help my clients move forward.  So this seems like an easy answer, BUT the latter part of their tweet (and yes I realize that I am taking this completely out of context) was what hit me: the question, “What are you going to do?”

As I reclined watching the balloons float around in the morning sunlight my train of thought went speeding towards the whole concept of “doing”.  And more specifically, “Doing versus Being.”

Serendipitously this idea came up several more times since Sunday, and more than once with clients, so I wanted to address it here in my blog.

I want to tell you a story that might illustrate my position.

My son is a competitive cyclist, and like most elite athletes he burns more calories in an afternoon than some of us burn in a week (it is not unusual for him to ride his bike 100 miles in a day).

A few years ago he was in the middle of his training season, riding the daylights out of the mountains in Colorado and suddenly he found himself without the energy to continue.

Not just that day, but for the rest of the season.  He had overtrained.

He had failed to rest enough and as a result  he missed an entire year of racing.  There was literally nothing he could do to rebuild his body but to rest.

And this, this “doing nothing” was emotionally painful.  Why?  Because while he was pushing his limits he felt like he was building his endurance, his speed, his mental capacity for strategy, his climbing skills, his engine, but while he was resting he felt like he was marching in place, marking time.

I think that watching him go through this experience taught me in a very real way something that I find myself reminding him now, as well as myself and my clients when it is applicable…”the rest is as important as the work”.

Which brings me back to “doing vs. being”.  One of my favorite maxims is, “Doing is work, being is effortless.” 

I’m not finding fault with “working”.  I am wanting to open a conversation about bringing more effortlessness into your life.

You have things that you desire.  You want a relationship that brings you joy.  You want to succeed.  You want abundance.  You want health. You want happiness.  Of course you do.  We all want these things.  And one of the first things we decide when we want something is what we are going to do to get it.

We live in a culture that places a very high value on work.  I know so many people that are like the energizer bunny, just going and going and going.  This invisible judgment and value that we place on work often creates a feeling of guilt when we are not “doing” enough. And this produces burn-out, stress, and dis-ease.

When we are “doing” too much everything becomes a struggle and nothing really seems “easy” anymore.

I want to encourage you to give yourself permission to take some time to just “be”.

Whatever that means to you.  Breathe, relax, have fun, watch a balloon float for a while.

You might be surprised at how this rebuilds you, restores you, reinvigorates you, so that when it is time to get it done, you find yourself accomplishing more with less effort.

Love & Magic,

Cindie

 

 

Posted in General | 6 Comments

The Shift

“We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the life that is waiting for us.” – Joseph Campbell

Every week I get email from readers asking about relationships, and the most popular questions have to do with how one can get the ultimate relationship, the one they dream of, how can they find their soulmate, how can they find ‘true love’.

These questions come from a deep place of dissatisfaction.  A place of wanting something different, something new, something real.

Often all that is needed to open a space for this new thing to show up is for the person to make a shift.  A shift in perspective, a shift in what they will accept, a shift in environment.

Shift. As a coach, I hear this word often.  Sometimes I’m hearing my client say it, “I’m ready for a big shift”.  Sometimes I’m the one suggesting it.

Dictionary.com, (one of my favorite iPhone apps BTW) defines shift this way: to put (something) aside and replace it by another or others; to change or exchange.

In order to make a shift, something has to give! Something has to go.

When we want a certain thing, we have to let go of something else to make space, whether energetically, physically, or emotionally.

A shift requires letting go.  Letting go of a relationship that isn’t working.  Letting go of expectations.  Letting go of old ideas.  Letting go of what you’re tolerating.

Letting go can be painful, scary, emotional.  And we often resist it for too long.  Someone once said that what we resist persists.  And this is true, as long as we are holding on to the way things are, we cannot have anything else.  We must let go to have a shift.

“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.” – Lao Tzu

Are you ready for a shift?  What are you willing to let go of?

Love & Magic,

Cindie

P.S. If you’re interested in working with me one on one to make that shift, the first step is here.

Posted in General | Leave a comment

The Puzzle of Romance

If you have known me, or read my blog, for any length of time at all, I am sure you have heard me say “Every moment is perfect.”

It is one of my favorite beliefs, and yes, I do believe it.

I also understand that many moments feel anything but perfect.  Which is one of the reasons I love the saying so much.  There have been many times when I had to remind myself that ‘Every moment is perfect.’

Similarly, a quote by Deepak Chopra proclaims:  “There are no extra pieces in the universe. Everyone is here because he or she has a place to fill, and every piece must fit itself into the big jigsaw puzzle.”

Today is Valentine’s Day.  Last year the weekend before Valentine’s Day I was with a bunch of friends and I heard them referring to the upcoming holiday of romance as “Valloween”.

Most of us enjoying brunch together that day were single women.  And although I did think it was a hysterical nickname for the holiday, I also totally understood why a person could feel that way about a holiday that has as it’s sole purpose the celebration of  romance.

Because let’s face it, when you aren’t having any romance, it’s sort of difficult to want to celebrate it.

And although I am currently in a very happy romantic relationship, I have been single, and I do remember how painful it can be to watch the world around you celebrate their romantic bliss while you patiently wait for the day of hearts and flowers to pass.

It has been during times like that, that I have reminded myself that every moment is perfect, that there are no extra pieces in the Universe.

YOU are not an extra piece.  You are perfect.  This moment is perfect.  Right where you are, right now, is perfect.  And I believe that if romance and partnership are something you desire, that there is a perfect person out there for you.

So if you haven’t found that puzzle piece that fits you perfectly yet, keep searching.  Keep believing that there IS a piece that fits.  And just as when you are working a real jigsaw puzzle, remember that you have to KNOW what the piece looks like.  Get really clear on what you want, and you’ll be that much closer to finding it.

Love & Magic,

Cindie

And if you haven’t listened to my class on the 7 Ingredients to Great Chemistry, you can find it here.

Posted in General | 2 Comments

Forward Progress

Wednesday morning I was in my office getting ready to coach a long time client and I realized that a certain thing I have imagined, dreamed of, planned for, and desired is finally coming to pass.

The thing that made me realize this is a sheet of paper I came across in my office.  The paper was an outline, a business plan of sorts, a representation, a treasure map if you will, of the things I wanted to create in my career.  The paper was dated February 3, 2010.  Almost exactly 2 years ago.

2 years.

Many things in my life have changed in those two years.

Many things remain relatively unchanged.

I think it is those things that remain unchanged that can sometimes give us the impression that we aren’t making forward progress, or at least maybe not as fast as we would like to be moving.

And yet…I stood there looking at this slip of paper and taking account of just how much progress I have made towards my intended goals and dreams.

Many times the basic structure of our life is steady, we eat, we sleep, we wake, we go to work, we come home, we talk to family and friends, we do what we do and then we do it all again tomorrow.

And yet within that structure things change, shift, move, grow.

Two things came to mind for me that I believe made all the difference in bringing these dreams into reality.

  1.  I had to learn how to let go.  One of the most powerful things anyone has ever said to me was “Every big shift comes after a big letting go.”  I believe this to be the absolute truth.  We have to be willing to let go of one thing to be free to allow another thing space to happen.
  2. I had to learn how to say “yes”. We can become empowered enough to say “No!” to what we don’t want, but then we need to go the next step and be willing to say “Yes!” to what we do want, and this may put us in a situation where we have to again be willing to let go. (See step 1 above.)

What do you want to create this year?   In your career?  In your relationships?  In your life?

What are you willing to let go of?

What are you willing to say “Yes” to?

It might seem scary.  Or impossible.  Or crazy.

Let go.  Say yes.  Make it happen.

Trust the Process.

Love & Magic,

Cindie

Posted in General | Leave a comment

What you want, wants you.

Recently a close friend of mine hung a sign on her closet door.  The sign is an antique car sign that says “Tourist”.

She said to me, “It’s hanging on the closet door hinges to remind me of Grandpa who left Iowa for Pomona and a warmer and better life. He purchased a car named Tourist and traveled to Iowa via New Orleans and returned via Montauk Point. I’ve always believed I was born with wheels on.  Certainly they were a part of my childhood travels with my parents.  My heritage: we keep going.”

This friend of mine loves to travel, in fact she becomes very energetic and passionate and alive just talking about traveling.

She has traveled to many places in her life and she desires to travel to many more.  The recent years have not offered many travel opportunities for her but there is something I believe and I see it so clearly here….and it this: the things we so strongly desire are there, somewhere, waiting for us, desiring us, and drawing us in.

Something I firmly believe: “What you want, wants you.” And isn’t this just a perfect example of that very thing?  We don’t just desire things for no reason.  I believe the desire is the confirmation, the signpost of what is true and real for us.

Recently I came across The Sketchbook Project.  It could have been a coincidence, except that I don’t generally believe in them.

I could not stop thinking about it.  For a solid week after learning about it, it was constantly on my mind.  (My early background was in graphic design, and I think I was born with a colored pencil in my hand.)  My inner self tried to object….”This is going to take a lot of time, you might not finish it, you already have a lot going on, you’re in a brand new relationship and this will take up time you could be spending together, <insert any other lame objection you can think of here.>

But then I realized that I was still thinking about it. A LOT.

So I took the plunge (and I might even share some of my work here if I hear from some of you about wanting to see it!)

Like my friend and her desire to travel, like my desire to create art and music, I know that you too have desires.

Dreams.  Longings.  And I believe they are there because they want to be fulfilled.  They might seem really big, like traveling to India.  They might be smaller, like creating a sketchbook.  But whatever they are, they are CALLING YOU!!

Take them out.  Dust them off.  Hang a sign on your closet door to remind you of them if you must.  Know that intentions are powerful and that you feel drawn towards that certain thing because that certain thing is drawing you…that opportunity, that situation, that position, that acheivement, and that place.

Open up to it and know that this is the year you will begin to move closer to fulfilling all of your desires. And I can’t wait to hear about them when you do!

Love & Magic,

Cindie

Posted in General | 4 Comments

This Present Moment

We are two weeks into 2012, and I have been thinking about how we tend to look forward to each new year–making plans and wondering what the new year will bring.

And yet, for all of our gazing into the future and desiring to create new plans for a new year, the Present Moment is all we really ever have.

Have you ever thought about that? That all we really have is right now?

The present moment is the only thing that is truly “real”.

All of our past experiences are so valuable if we allow them to be learning experiences, and all of our plans for the future are truly valuable when we make those plans with intention and wisdom.

Yet, the only thing we ever really have is right here, right now, and yet so often our thoughts have nothing to do with the present moment and everything to do with the past or the future.

The fears and worries that plague us by holding us back and preventing us from making progress are often, if not always, attached to the past or to the future, and often to both.

We have all had an unpleasant experience (in the past) and allowed that memory to form an assumption that if given similar circumstances it will happen again.


It is an empowering thing to realize that just because something happened in the past, does not mean it will happen again. Bringing ourselves back to the NOW can be a big step in that direction.

A powerful tool for bringing oneself back into the present moment is to become aware of the five senses.

What does the temperature in the room feel like?

What do the clothes you are wearing feel like on your body, on your skin?

If you are eating or drinking, fully focus on the taste, feel, and smell of the food or drink.

What sounds can you hear right now, where you are?

What can you smell?

What colors do you notice in your present location?

All of these queries bring you back to NOW.  All of these senses are being felt by you NOW, in the present moment.

And in this present moment our fears have no power.

Here’s to a year full of awesome moments!  Each one, perfect.

Love & Magic,

Cindie

Posted in Conscious Creation, General | Leave a comment