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Business Leadership Leadership Strategies Leadership Styles Managing Stress Patterns Stress

What to do when you feel like you have no more bandwidth

What do you keep telling yourself when you have no more bandwidth to do one more thing? 

If you are a high achieving business person, I bet you just said to yourself, “I can always do just one more thing today.” 

That’s exactly what my senior VP client told me two weeks ago. 

And yesterday I got a call from his office that he wanted to talk, that he was feeling somewhat better from the raging headache, high fever, and chills that Covid19 had blessed him with. 

He called me later in the day and said “Sylvia, I really am a jerk. I thought I was invincible. Yes, I feel better now but I know the fever will get me again and I just wanted to tell you that you are right. And thanks.” 

Before I could ask him what I am so right about he said he had to go (he meant that literally) and rushed to the bathroom.  

Today he called again and had more time to put his thoughts together. 

He asked me to write my weekly blog about what he las learned in the very long and unpleasant past few weeks. 

 “I want everyone to know that they better prioritize what really matters before crazy COVID does it for them. I was such a high achieving guy that I would listen to people who talked about work-life balance as if they were all wimps. Male and female, they were the ones who would never be the top leaders. 

I, on the other hand, was always there saying things like ‘As soon as….’  

Our bottom line is better. 

There are a few more experts on my team.     

Our technology issues are handled. 

 I can delegate to the newbies.

I come up with some new products.

Here is what I learned. So sad, I had to learn it the hard way. I know you have been encouraging me to look for a better balance. And, I must admit, I figured you were just giving me your ‘be kind, be nice’ woman talk. 

I saw myself as fierce, kinda the ‘large and in charge’ type of guy. It’s all bullshit!  

This pandemic takes out whoever gets in its path.  

Unless you, that means everyone who reads this, learn to prioritize, stop barreling though because you can, ignoring the pain, both physical and emotional, from having to be a super-achiever, not stopping to say “What the hell am I doing and even better, why am I running on empty?” you may never get a second chance. 

I’m lucky. Like Chris Cuomo on CNNI’m getting better and am able to get great care from my wife. I only hope that she and my three kids stay well. 

I am now willing to do whatever it takes to have a life that is more about sharing and caring than about being the first up the hill. 

I want some pointers on what I can do to be a more effective human being, not just a more effective leader. 

Tell everyone that life includes work yet it is not just about that slippery word, success unless you have it in all areas of your life.” 

And there you have it.  

We are all being given the opportunity to look inside ourselves and make some vital decisions.  

When you feel like you have no more bandwidth, I suggest that you take a break so you won’t break down or burn out.

Hopefully, the virus will pass you by. Or at least, you will have the stamina to fight it off. 

Live a life that is satisfying and fulfilling. Now, that is a great definition of success. 

Categories
Leadership Stress

Stress, Leadership, and Parents

Hi everybody! Sylvia Lafair here, and today I’m going to talk about stress and parents. No not us as parents, us as adult children with our parents who are aging and I’m going to focus very specifically today on mothers and daughters. There’s a different dynamic that goes with fathers and daughters or mothers and sons or fathers and sons.

Right now, I’m going to talk about mothers and daughters for a minute, and I’ve been getting a lot of calls lately with tons of frustration, and I know that we’re all up to here with stress and anxiety, and knowing how to behave, and we don’t have all the diversions that we usually have.

So, we can chill out. Anyway, I’ve been getting a lot of calls from women, saying my mother is driving me nuts, and what it comes down to, is really looking at some of the core things that happened, that when we were kids. Looking at them not judging it, just looking at it, and I want to talk about three patterns that have been handed from mothers to daughters, and if you’re a mother and you have a daughter, think about if you’re handing it to them, and how it impacts you in your relationships. Both your personal relationships and your professional relationships

So, the three main patterns people are talking about is, saying you know, my mother is used to me saying, ‘Yes to whatever she wants and needs, and it’s getting old, and I don’t want to do it anymore,’ or somebody else is saying, ‘You know, I was trained to always put myself last. I don’t want to do that anymore,’ and others are saying, ‘I feel like I’ve always been making up for my mother not being able to fulfill what she wanted in her life. So, I’m overwhelmed and climbing that ladder of success, and it’s driving me nuts.’

So here, the three patterns that we’re looking at right now are the pleaser, who does not know how to say no. The martyr, who’s into suffering and putting herself last, and the super achiever, who feels like she has the obligation to make up for everything that hasn’t worked in her mother’s life, and here’s what I’m suggesting. I’m suggesting, and I think it’s important that you take a generational view of this before you go, and have the conversation with your mother, and I brought my book over here. Gutsy, which is how women leaders make change. I brought this adjust to as a show-and-tell, because a lot of the information I’m talking about is in there.

Here’s where it is, before you decide to have a conversation with your mother that will lead to yet another it didn’t work. I’m not good enough. She’s annoying. She’s not doing what I want. All this stuff that goes on, it is the most powerful relationship. Here’s what I’d like you to do. I’d like you to take a generational view, and begin to look at your life, and the patterns of behavior and the cultural socio-economic aspects of your life. Then, go back, you have to talk to her, and look at what your mother went through, and then go back one more generation into looking at your grandmother.

Now, once you have some of that, you can sit down with your mother, and have a conversation, and keep it to, ‘In what way were you trained or taught to be a pleaser, to say yes all the time?’ and ‘In what way did you put yourself last?’ and ‘In what way did you feel you had to make up for the things that never got done in past generations?

Those are the questions to ask, and I’d love to get the answers to that from you. So, that can begin a dialogue. So, those of you who are looking at this, what is it that you are doing that you feel is left over from the past, that needs to be re-balanced and changed? And my last question is, how did you learn to ask for what you need? I’m not even saying why. How did you learn to ask for what you need? So, remember the patterns we’re looking at are the pleaser, the martyr and the super achiever, and once you begin to look from that direction, the dialogue with your mom will change and will grow, and it will change in the way you talk to any of the women you work with.

We all have stories that work on us about those areas of our lives. So, talk with your mother after you’ve done the research, and if your grandmother’s still around, she’s still alive, that’s great. The three of you can have a wonderful conversation.

So, let’s do that because during this time, when we don’t have as many diversions, maybe it is time to go deeper and find out more about ourselves, and then look at what we, whether we have biological daughters or children or not, what we’re passing to the next generation. So, this is to your success.

Have a beautiful rest of the week and find some freedom inside you, so we can celebrate freedom on July 4th. Thanks so much. Good time.

Categories
Business Growth Leadership Leadership Strategies Leadership Styles Stress

Telling the Truth: Not for Wimps

Why does telling the truth have to be so darn hard?

So much information, so much confusion.

Who do you believe? 

Which media outlets are pushing out fake news and which are telling the honest, open truth?

Anyone?

No one?

Telling the Truth: Not for Wimps

If you missed out on being part of past revolutions, like the revolution of 1776, or the 1960s, now is your chance to be part of a revolution that is underway right now.

It’s about something that can be terrifying. 

It causes excessive amounts of stress.

It’s about telling the truth, and especially, telling truth to power.

Leaders today are under so much scrutiny and that’s a good thing. There has always been the “backroom truth” and the “public truth.”

Truth is coming into the public domain thanks to social media.

Telling the Truth is Good for Business

The organizations I have worked with that have truth as a core value has been successful. Because what is found is that telling the truth is good for business.

It increases trust and trust increases collaboration and enhances creativity.

Now, every revolution needs a bumper sticker. Remember “No taxation without representation” or “Make love, not war”?

How bout now “The truth shall set you free.”

We all want honest people in Congress, in our corporations, family businesses, start-up companies. 

At the core of who we are, I believe we would all prefer having someone telling the truth instead of being set up and scammed.

Let’s see truth-telling become the way we work.

Let’s see leaders step it up and model truth-telling and requiring the truth from those who report to them.

No more denying or ignoring, no more playing CYA to avoid being held accountable. Being honest is at the tipping point of gaining respect once again.

Diversity and Truth-Telling

In her Pulitzer Prize-winning book “Team of Rivals” Doris Kearns Goodwin underlines how talking truth to power created the tension between despair and conviction that helped accentuate truth and encourage trust.

During times of revolution as well as times of accelerated evolution the extremes of the good the bad, the ugly, and the beautiful are highlighted.

That time is now.

Here’s some good news. YOU can develop skills to deliver difficult feedback, manage resistance to change, orchestrate conflict resolution, and keep stress levels from going through the roof.

More good news. You do not have to be a charismatic orator for the truth to be heard and accepted. 

More good news. When you tell the truth, you have less to remember.

Pioneers on the Road to Truth 

Are you ready to be a pioneer to demand truth at work and in the community? Are you ready to stand for calling out brutality, be it from police or those who want to polarize the world?

If you get concerned about what happens when you tell the truth, think like the child in the tale The Emperor’s New Clothes.

During the time of the Emperor’s reign, vanity and greed made it possible for clever con men to make a financial bundle.

They convinced the Emperor, who was a shallow and self-absorbed Narcissist that only the “pure of heart” would be able to see his new royal garb. Brilliant ‘spin doctors’, the clothes were spun of ‘fools cloth, as in great marketing with no substantial product. And then the ‘piece de resistance’, a viral PR campaign that hypnotized the whole town into an agreement. After all, wouldn’t you want to be in the ‘pure of heart’ camp? So, when the Emperor rode into town  ‘al fresco’ it took an innocent little kid to shout “BUT THE EMPEROR  IS NAKED”!

That innocence, that willingness to speak out and say the truth is often drummed out of us early in life. It’s time for that to change.

Telling the Truth is Riveting

So, like the Emperor’s town folk, is it safer to pretend, to not see? Say the words ‘not see’ over a few times, say them quickly, and notice you are saying Nazi”!

When we play it safe it causes us to lose our magic, our zest for courageously questioning the status quo or situations that lack a clear focus. 

Telling the truth is NOT for wimps. 

We are starting to see a global groundswell for change, for truth, for the trust for really understanding that we are all part of the human race and no one wins unless we all do.

Join the movement by telling the truth and the reconciliation so needed in our world right now.

Categories
Managing Stress Patterns Stress Success

Are You Drowning in Stress?

“HELP! I’m drowning in stress.”

Those are the words that are becoming a universal theme these days.

“I hear you. I want to support you.” Is my response.

I have some good ideas on how to navigate these days of confusion and
complexity.

I wish I had a magic wand and could do a few quick wand waves and make
everything better.

Since I’m not a fairy godmother, here’s what I can do.

I can give you some tools to help you understand why you keep getting
overwhelmed, why you feel anxious when change is in the air, and why you
feel disheartened even on the most beautiful, sunny days.

Want to blame all of your tense behavior on today’s stressful situations?

Maybe you can blame some of your crappy mood on what is happening
today. But, not all of it.

Please listen to the words you use to express your upset.

Here’s what happened recently to Marcy, a senior executive known for her
amazing insights and quick wit.

Last week she was left out of the loop on a project. Was it intentional or
was it just an oversight?

Her trusted colleague, her boss, someone she loved to work with had put
the finishing touches on the proposal without asking Marcy’s permission or
her approval.

Here is what Marcy said to me several days ago:

“It was an old, familiar feeling, being discounted. By the time I called to talk
with my boss I was almost out of control. As I spewed forth my rage I really
listened to my words. As you say, Sylvia, I got at the observation of myself.

I told her over and over that she had crossed boundaries that were
inappropriate and simply not okay with me.

How dare she not consider me and my feelings?

And then I went limp.

I heard what I was saying. I felt the way I used to feel after my parents,
both of them would discipline me by beating the crap out of me if I ever
spoke up for me.

I finally calmed down and to my embarrassment found out that she has
sent the proposal back to me to complete. I had not received it yet.

At least I became aware of why I was so damned upset pretty quickly so I
could do damage control.”

Marcy’s memories had taken over and with her emotions leading the way,
she could not sit quietly. The past had invaded the present.

They showed up when an old wound from years ago got touched. This is
happening more and more these days as we all reach the limits of handling
stress both from work, at home and in the world at large.

I have put together a program so you can find more effective ways to
handle stress and not let the triggers from the past take over your behavior
today.

It’s about finding the zone between shouting out upset and stuffing it down.

I call it the safe stress zone.

Join me in a master class to find out about what causes you to fly off the
handle like Marcy did or run and hide like so many others do.

Stress won’t go away and neither will the old memories that cause the
stings of hurt and anxiety.

However, you can learn better ways to navigate the rocky road of these
difficult days.

Watch the master class here and learn how you can stay in the safe stress zone.

Categories
Business and Life Patterns Managing Stress Patterns Stress Success

How to declutter your mind and get it organized

Did you declutter your home during the past few months? Is that all you need to declutter? Here’s what one of my clients said that had me laughing and cheering him on. Two levels to declutter…. Your home and your mind! 

“Dear Dr. Sylvia, 

I have always been a leader, and I have been known as “the boss who is not bossy.” 

I guess that’s good.  

I always like to include others in decision making. 

However, being at home with my wife and two teens has been anything but pleasurable. 

Their grumpy manner finally got to me and I created a family project. I was/am in charge. 

My wife took a back seat and simply watched as I maneuvered this project like I was at work, where people really listen to me. 

The project was to declutter the house. 

I know that wonderful Japanese author, Marie Kondo wrote “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” and talks about the virtue of a decluttered home. 

However, she really doesn’t talk about how to harness the power of a girl who is 14 and a boy who is 17 who hate being on the same team and annoy each other to their limits. 

apologized to my wife who has put up with more of their GOTCHA Games than I do. I told her I should have been more involved sooner. 

But, I digress….. 

What I learned as we cleaned out the cabinets, got piles together to take to Goodwill, was the following, and it’s what you have been teaching for years and years. 

 Here goes…..  

The clutter in your mind is as important to get rid of as the clutter in your home. 

I now see that all the work I have done with your organization about behavior patterns and pattern repetition is really to declutter your mind. 

I had a really amazing talk with my kids about this as we cleaned the closets and made the space in the house feel calm and expansive. 

We talked about why they are such jerks to each other and how that patterns of GOTCHA could become so ingrained they would take them to work and there, it could mean lost opportunities for promotion or creative collaboration. 

Honestly, to my surprise, they listened. 

They asked questions, they wanted to learn. 

So, please can you send a copy of your e-book GOTCHA to me (signed would matter) so I can go over it with my teens. 

And just FYI, my wife was able to leave us to our education and get some of her work for her high powered leadership job done without begging for peace and quiet. 

My new theory is to do both: 

                             Declutter your home and get it organized 

                             Declutter your mind and get it organized. 

Thanks in advance for the book, and thanks for all the great info about these dang patterns that we need to purge and transform. 

Best wishes, 

The NOT Bossy Boss 

Categories
Managing Stress Stress

Stress and Relationships

Hi everyone and welcome to the world of stress. I was tooling around on Facebook and I saw something that really cracked me up. Those of you who remember the movie, ‘Back to the Future,’ if you don’t, go see it again. The whole trilogy is pretty brilliant. Thank you Steven Spielberg, but there’s a scene where the wild-haired doctor goes to the future, comes back, meets Marty McFly, and wild-eyed he says, ‘Marty, don’t go to 2020.’ So, there you have it.

We have predictions, but we’ll get through this, and we will be the better for it. We will learn from it. We will create new ways of being. We’re already doing that.

So, what I’d like to talk about today is, I’ve asked people and I’ve gotten a lot of questions. I’m going to read some of them about what is it you really want to understand, learn and know about right now, and people are saying, a job searching for the age of over 50, beginning a new job and relationship building online, remotely which is great. How to cope and maintain positive interpersonal skills in an environment at work that just doesn’t seem very pleasant. That’s many places right now. Losing the guilt when terminating an employee because they’re not doing a good job, but I know about them personally, and it really hurts me to have to let them go.

Another is, I’ll figure out why my director is always so short with me, but nice to other people, and it goes on like that. I must have gotten 40 or 50 of these, and one of the things that’s really important is, as I looked for the common denominator, it was all about relationships and interestingly, that’s the work that we at Creative Energy Options have been doing. It seems like forever. It’s all about relationships. So, it’s about relationships at home, relationships that were relationships in our community and relationships with ourselves.

So, I’m going to just talk very briefly today about the core of how I got here, and it really started as I was growing up, and my father was in a family business with his two brothers. That was very, as I say, fiscally successful but emotionally bankrupt. They would fight all the time. So, as a kid growing up, I would have hear him come home from work, and say to my mother, he was always complaining about something, and finally I must have been. I don’t know, five, six, seven in that range, I said to him one day, ‘Daddy, if work isn’t fun, why do you go there? Why do you do it?’ And he looked at me and patted me on the head, and said, ‘Honey, that’s just the way it is, and you just do what you need to do.’ Well that’s the way it was. It’s not the way it has to be.

So, I’d like to give you this little tidbit to take with you about relationships, and think about this for a minute. We are born from a relationship. Do people get together and y’all know what happens. Now, we have other ways of doing it with in vitro etc., but nonetheless, it takes an egg and a sperm to make a kid, right? So, we’re born from ovary, relationship through a relationship, and every woman who’s listening, who has children knows that one. There is some kind of, hopefully cooperation between this infant baby, who is going to be born, and the mother as this very complicated process of being birth comes out. So, we’re born from a relationship through a relationship into a relationship. Somebody’s there to catch the baby, and then the baby is taken and given to nurses, to the mother on her breast. The father may or may not be there. I don’t know. I don’t want to judge any of this. I’m just saying from a relationship through a relationship into a relationship, and relationships never go away.

So, we have to learn, understand and do a deeper dive into the power of relationships. That’s what our work is all about. That’s what ‘Don’t Bring It to Work’ is about. The book I wrote, which is about breaking the family patterns that limit success. What we learned as little kids as we were growing up, I learned that work was the enemy as I watched my father, and I had to come back round and see. No, there’s a different way of doing it. You don’t have to fight all the time. So, there is a place in the work that we do, where each of us has to understand relationships better.

So, remember what I just said from a relationship through a relationship into a relationship, and then of course there’s that relationship we have with ourselves, that inner world, that we live in, and we need to understand what pushes our buttons, what makes us so upset if somebody says something. I love what somebody wrote here, where they said, ‘Where is it? Let me see… cut um, it’s the one about I want to figure out why my director is short with me, but not with others.

Well, that’s going to take some work. So, it really is about a couple of cups of coffee or tea or something to sit and talk with that person, and figure out what’s going on. It’s all about relationships now. Next week, I’m going, I’ve asked my coaches to begin to add their expertise in this, and the first one next week will be, Brenda Thompson, who is one of the first Creative Energy Option breakthrough coaches. She’s incredible. So, she’s a pattern breakthrough coach. She’s also an HR expert. She has a master’s degree in applied behavioral science from John Hopkins. So, she comes highly, highly respected and very well studied. Now, what she’s going to talk about, which is going to be her topic and I’m quoting now is, furloughs, layoffs, downsizing. Oh my, how to bounce back when you unexpectedly lose your job or you’re put on furlough.

So, stay tuned next week for Brenda, and she’s a wealth of information. If you have other questions, please put them under here or comments. We love to hear from you. We’re here to make this world a better place, and we’re here to get through this time. So, 2020 even though it’s complicated and difficult, can end with a flourish, and we can all have grown and move on during this pandemic.

Thank you so much. Have a beautiful rest of the day. Thank you.

Categories
Confidence Managing Stress Stress

The Fatal Flaws: Stress and Self-doubt

Hi everyone! Silvia Lafair here, and I’ve been working diligently on my stress-busters program and a new book that will be coming out, which is for me, fun and exciting but something happened yesterday that made me decide to do this video today.

I got a call from someone and I didn’t recognize the voice. So, when I said, ‘Who is this?’ He said, ‘This is an old friend, who’s been through your leadership program,’ and I still couldn’t get the voice, and he said, ‘Don’t you remember me? My name is not good,’ and I thought it’s a pretty odd name, not good? He said, ‘Yeah, and my last name is enough,’ and I went, ‘Not good enough?’ and I went, ‘Oh my god! How are you doing Donald?’ and it was very funny because I hadn’t talked to him in a while, but he had won the award for the biggest self-doubter in our program.

Now, what I want to say is, looking at this, it’s very interesting in all the research, women tend to have a bit more self-doubt than men. Although, men hold it back more but in doing the research, we’re women, as women we’re playing catch-up all. So, men listening to this, please pay attention because it’s important, and I have some statistics here. It’s really a generational thing than not good enough. Do you know that women couldn’t even have a credit card under their own name until 1974? A man had to co-sign with her. That kind of makes you feel a little doubtful about your own abilities, and talk about this thing called pregnancy. It wasn’t until 1978, up till then women could be fired for being pregnant on the job. So, there was a lot of questioning and self-doubt and I don’t want to make this into a women’s camp, in a men’s camp.

I just want you to get that, self-doubt is the fatal flaw that keeps everything locked down, and we have to fight against it. It’s like being in a cage. Think of a beautiful bird in a beautiful bird cage, and they’re there looking around saying, ‘I want to get out of here,’ not realizing that the door to the bird cage is open. All they have to do is push it with their head. It’s the same with us, all we have to do with these cages we’ve created for ourselves is, kick them with her foot, push them with their arm, push them with our head. However, whatever works for you but it really is important to begin to look at this self-doubt now.

I have in the program that I’m working on, this stress buster’s program. I have a whole area that we’ll talk in more depth about it, but what I would like to give you today, just my little, little tidbits is, if you can think of these three questions to ask yourself at the end of every day. It’s very important to think about it, because this is where you have to move past self-doubt.

One is, ‘How honest have I been in talking with others? Am i telling the truth?’ If you’re saying, I’m not sure, and what does that mean? How do you present yourself? What are you saying? And the other thing. Somebody also, that this Donald who called me said, ‘Is vulnerability the same as as being a doubter? A self-doubter?’ It’s a part of it, but being vulnerable is, simply telling your truth. It’s being honest. Self-doubting is saying, ‘I’m not good enough,’ which was his name for a while.

All right, the other question. So, that’s one, ‘How much did I tell the truth and where did I do it today?’ The next question is, ‘Did I shrink away from anything that I was going to do today because it made me uncomfortable?’ And that’s really important, and just kind of look at it as, you ask this. It will untie those knots inside. What I call, ‘The I’m not, cannot, should not, not good enough, that turn into knots, K-N-O-T-S that keep us locked.

So, the ‘we don’t see that the door to the cage is really open,’ and the third question is, ‘Who did I judge today?

That’s really an important one because when we are judging others, we’re also judging ourselves. So, I want you to think about who do you judge, and what do you say when you’re judging them? What do you say when you’re finger-pointing? Because there is that boomerang effect, and it really is about you.

So, those are things – I just wanted to give you some things to stir the pot a little bit today, and if you have questions or comments, please put them under this, and if you like this, I’d appreciate a like.

I, not have been doing this that long, but I’m really getting that people on Facebook think. Likes are good, so whatever. If you do, I’d appreciate it.

Now, this fatal flaw of self-doubt started when we were very young, and it crept up and crept up and it gets deep into us. So, we’ve got to work with it. So, those three questions, I’ll say them again: one, ‘How honest have you been today?’ ‘What did you shrink away that you felt you couldn’t really do that you’ve pulled back from made you uncomfortable?’ And, ‘who did you judge?’

That’s it for now. Chew on that. Just remember that, door to that cage of the self-doubt. Door is unlocked. All you have to do, is kick it open.

Thank you. Have a beautiful rest of the day, and let’s make a new day about how we handle stress and all the fears that are around at this time. Thanks so much.

Categories
Confidence Managing Stress Stress

Stress and Confidence

Hi everyone! Today, I’m going to talk about stress and confidence, and it brought to mind a time when I was in a very stressful situation that wasn’t meant to be stressful. It was supposed to be fun. Trust me, it was stressful and how even now, during this time of craziness, I pull on that to say, ‘You can do it to myself.’ So, here’s what happened.

This is a bazillion years ago.

I went to one of the first Tony Robbins firewalk programs. We were in Manhattan and they were about 200 of us, and it was right across from Penn Station. If you know Manhattan and we were on, I think the second floor of this place, we were learning the techniques to do the firewalk and I thought, ‘Well, I’ll learn the techniques but I’m not so sure I’m going to do the fire walk.’

Anyway, off we go learning how to use neurolinguistic programming, and it’s very powerful. It was really a lot of fun. He was a great teacher and then he started down the stairs leading us out to the sidewalk where there were two. I think there were two places where you could do the fire walk. It was evening. There were three ambulances parked there, which you may just say, ‘What did I get myself into,’ and there I was doing my right arm up, looking at it, going cool moss, because what’s the opposite of hot fire? Well, it’s cool moss.

So, there we were walking down this, there saying, ‘We can do it. We can do it.’ I still Wasn’t sure if I could and you could feel the stress mounting and the stress hormones just charging through my body, but it was fun right? It was a not. It was a contrived stress situation. Let me put it that way.

So, when we got outside, I remember kind of looking around to see how other people were doing it, and somehow I got pushed toward the front of the line, and all of a sudden, there I was standing in front of the hot coals, looking up at this very tall man. He was about nine foot seven. I thought, looking up at Tony Robbins. If you don’t know who he is, go google him, but he’s a really big interesting guy, and I’m standing there, and he looked down, and I said, ‘No, no, I just came to see what it’s like,’ and he looked at me and he said, ‘You’re ready?’ He said. I’m ready. I didn’t say I’m ready, but all of a sudden there I am. I said, ‘I don’t think so.’ He said, ‘No, you’re ready.’ So, I took a deep breath, put my hand up, and walked across the hot coals saying, ‘Cool moss,’ got to the other side, and it was spectacular because I walked on this hot thing that was supposed to burn my feet, and I was fine, and then what you do is, you celebrate.

So, people were there hugging me, and it was in days when we could hug each other. Not that long ago, hugging and celebrating and this went deeply into my nervous system. I could do something I didn’t think I could do, and it could really turn out very nicely. So, after I finished celebrating, I turn around, and then this is what’s interesting, my husband Herb was with us, with me and Julie my daughter, and all of a sudden, I turn around and I look and there’s Julie with her arm up getting ready to go, and I went, the stress really went high at that point because I said to myself, ‘Are you crazy? You are taking it with your own feet, that you could have risked burning is one thing, but taking your daughter? What if something happens?’ And I started to feel this stress going up.

Anyway, it was too late. I’m already on the other celebration side. Julie walks across. Did a great job. Put her arm up and did the cool moss and then we celebrated, and then a little later Herb came across, and the three of us were really fine. It was so exciting.

Now, Julie and I, and her but Julie and I and Herb, particularly have talked about this recently, and how when stressful situations occur. Now, we both can pull on that memory of that moment of walking across, doing something that looked impossible and we were able to do it.

So, I want you to think about this. There is no such thing as a stress-free life. We all know that. Now, we’re all dealing in many ways with our own ways of handling either being furloughed or money not coming in or the dreams we had being pushed into the background, and we’re doing it.

So, my suggestion when it comes to stress and confidence is, find a way. I’m not going to be doing a fire walk in these days, but find a way to do something that’s going to challenge you, that you know isn’t going to destroy you. Although, I have to tell you, there were a few people who did get burns on their feet. So, it’s not a simple walk across without any kind of issues, but find something that you can do, because doing something that’s very stress-filled and surviving it, overcoming it, getting past it will keep you strong during these times.

So, to all of you, I say have a beautiful day. Find a stress situation you can master and let me know about it. So, to your success.

Thank you so much. Till soon.

Categories
Managing Stress Stress

Ya Gotta Love EUSTRESS, Here’s Why

Hi everyone! Sylvia Lafair here, and I have a wish for all of you that you’re having a calm, peaceful, and joyful day, and I’m sure many of you are saying,’Huh! She must be nuts!’ It’s either too mush stress, too much aggravation or too much isolation, too much quite, and either way, I feel stressed.

So, I have been researching everything I can find about stress, and in my program that I’m doing, there are four levels of it. So, the first level that I want to talk about now is called EUSTRESS. E-U-S-T-R-E-S-S, EUSTRESS, and it’s the good stress. It’s the kind that you learned from.

So, think about the first time you got in the car, you’ve been practicing in the parking lot, you’re really good, and then, you’re told, ‘Okay, get out on the street and get out on the high way.’ Do you come in peaceful? I was and I doubt anybody I know was. You’re sitting there, gripping the steering wheel thinking, 10 o’clock or 2 o’clock or whatever you’ve been taught about how to hold the steering wheel and you’re tensed, but it’s a good stress, because you’ve got adrenalin growing and you’re really paying attention. You’re very vigilant. I wish we all have that kind of vigilance every time we get in a car.

We kind of forget over time, but that kind of stress keeps you going or whenever you have to stand in front of a group and do a presentation and then you felt before where you spoke I have butterflies in my stomach. Well, you know sounds good but it’s a tightness that develops but it keeps you going. It keeps you going. So, good stress. We have to learn from it. We have to practice it and I only have one question for you today to answer, and it’s really important because as these stressors come at us and they seem to be juggling with us in many ways, health, wealth, relationships, everywhere it’s it’s kind of getting us to tighten up. To say what are we going to do about this but it’s the question that you ask, is this a challenge or is it a threat? And some things are real threats and you go into that survival mode that fight, flight or freeze. Many people in that moment freeze, but some of us will go and fight, and some of us will run and depending on the situation. One way is the better way to go than the other. That’s when it’s a threat, but when it’s a challenge, you learn from it, you take it in you, absorb it.

After it’s over, you sit and you write about it or you just simply think about it, but you also pat yourself on the back, because I will tell you that stress. You stress the good stress that we all have, leads us to becoming more resilient and in this time that’s what we need more than ever before.

Being resilient means you can take whatever the difficult situation is. Have it as the foundation course you going through it, and grow from it and learn from it, and say, ‘and this too shall pass,’ and I’ve handled something just so scary and awful in the past, and now I’m able to do even more. So, for now, really embrace the idea of stress, embrace you stress, embrace you as you embrace you stress, and do have some calmness in your day, but really every time, something is kind of thrown out. You ask yourself, ‘Is this a threat or a challenge?’ And you’ll know which direction to go.

So, have a beautiful day. I hope you have some peace in the day and if not, if it’s very stressful, you stress is the way to think about it.

Thank you so much.

Categories
Business Growth Stress Success

The benefits of EUSTRESS

Eustress…what does that mean?  Is there really something as good stress?  In this post, I share with you the benefits of eustress and how you change how you respond to stress.

I have a big question for each of you to answer: Would you eat pizza and nothing else for a month? Or maybe chow down only hamburgers for breakfast, lunch, and dinner day after day? 

By the end of one week, I bet you would be thrilled with a bowl of spinach. 

Next question: Then why do you keep putting the same old thoughts in your mind? 

Think about it. Most self- talk can get pretty boring. 

The NOTS becomes KNOTS and we keep saying things like “This will not change” or “I cannot get this done” or “Im not good enough.” 

I’m getting so many stress-related calls these daysAnd most of them have the same underlying theme. 

It’s understandable when what we all thought was normal is no longer the baseline of our behavior. What does the new normal look like? No one knows yet.  

People are throwing up their hands and asking me to comment on what they should do to counteract the stress that is directing their negative behavior. The behavior, so many are telling methat causes stress seems to be getting worse. 

They are all saying variations of “Damn, why did I do THAT again?” 

Most say they are disappointed in themselves for falling back to old ways of reacting instead of leaning into new ways of responding. 

Here is my response: 

This is a great time to challenge your “normal” behavior and make big choices to do things differently. 

Enter the STRESS FLEX System. Watch the webinar here. 

Learn about the benefits of EUSTRESS (that’s good stress). 

And how to be in charge of all the other stressors that make you feel like crap.  

The STRESS FLEX System gives you the tools to analyze and evaluate before you decide what to do. 

It means first you look at the facts and then also consider the emotions that are activated by the facts.  

Then it’s time to give your maladaptive coping methods the boot. 

Time to talk with your inner voice and make good decisions so you no longer are mad as hell at yourself for bad reactions. 

The good news is….. you’ll have more and healthier choices in the future.  

Pizza anyone? 

Here’s to your success, 

Sylvia