About Relationships

I started my practice with a strong idea that I wanted to help individuals in the wellness field, empowering them to find harmony balancing all the facets in their life. At first, I refused to consult around romantic relationships. I usually referred one of the great coaches I knew were thriving in that field.

Things changed. I realized that I was passionate about the relationship with Self, which is, really, the foundation for relationships of all kind, including romantic. I dove into that department with abandon and excitement. I discovered some fascinating concepts and reaffirmed some items I already felt strongly about. We’re talking about all types of relationships here.

Let’s start with the hard, and obvious, one: If it doesn’t nurture you, and/or it hurts you, walk away!

We tend to project an idea, a dream, a perspective, on a relationship. For me, it was the married life with the  white picket fenced house including cats and a rose garden. It did work for a while. But things changed, as they always do, and soon it was no longer nurturing me. I wanted something different. The hard part wasn’t the change, relocation and reorganization of my life. The hard part was letting go of my original projection, of what happiness is supposed to look like.

Another wonderful concept is the idea of the relationship itself as an entity rather than the sum of two, or three or more. By focusing on either party at any given time, we tend to loose focus of the big picture. The same way we grow a flower considering seasons and various exposures, feedings, trimmings, we can look at the relationship in periods, what feeds it, what may hurt it. We don’t pay attention just to the water or the sun that feeds the plant, so we don’t just pay attention to one member of the relationship or another, we pay attention to the relationship itself.

A very rewarding and exciting concept is the co-creation. It can be many hings: children, art, country house, business, just something that each party can participate with their gift and witness a result that would have been impossible otherwise by oneself. Aside from the excitement of the experience, it’s about creating bonds, stories, connections that go beyond what takes place with the usual grabbing coffee, taking a vacation, watching a movie sort of activity. They are all valid, however, they won’t generate the same kind of bonding.

My favorite concept of all is the growth. We may have focused on a different meaning when we said “we want to grow old together”. Again we’re projecting the idea of time spent as a success. It’s very well anchored in our culture, many cultures actually. It would be a whole different blog on that alone. I’d like to focus here on the word “grow”. The relationship will thrive by all participants growing in the same direction at a relatively equal pace. There can be plateaus and catch up periods, naturally. In my opinion, if individuals in a group or couple, loose track of each others growth, or a gap is created, the relationship will weaken and possibly dissipate.

Relationships are hard, they are precious and worth the work though. What’s your favorite part about connecting with yourself and others? Comment below 🙂

Reach for the greatest part of yourself!

Paola

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It’s a marathon, not a sprint :)

One of the misconception I come across about growth, wellness and goals is the idea that one day, we’ll have “arrived”. There is no such thing in my opinion. I believe we are in a constant state of change, evolution, or degradation, depending on what one is doing. There is a constant movement to life, which is another reason for me to love dance so much, dance is life.
That movement can go in various direction, hard, soft, long, short, positive, negative. It never stops though. How we move defines the outcome: did we get the result we wanted, or not.
It appears that as we incorporate new habits we get to a certain level that feels more comfortable and closer to the top goal. I’ll agree with that. I believe in celebrating milestones for what didn’t exist in our life before and is now here thanks to work and dedication. That can go away very quickly if it’s not maintained though. So as we grow and incorporate new things in our lives, we still want to maintain what we want to keep.
In business it looks like this: retaining existing customers as well as developing new markets. A business will not thrive on just one of those, we need both dynamics to grow.
I’ll admit that some things get easier with time and productive habits incorporated in the past can become the new norm. It’s always in good form to check in friends and coaches about where we’re at. Feedback is the breakfast of champions!
I’ll embrace the idea of plateauing for short periods of time, taking a vacation and enjoying the view for a little bit. Then it’s back to work.
We have a whole childhood, and/or past lives depending on your spiritual system, to clean up and own. There is enough there to keep some of us busy for a while.
Then we have our own dreams and desires: what do we want most, why do we want it, how will we get there? That’s an endless source of opportunities to learn new things, to grow in other areas.
Are you planning on not dreaming anymore at some point? Will you check out from the dream train and settle for whatever has been accomplished so far? If the answer is no, then you know there will always be work, always a new habit to incorporate, always a new star to shoot for. That’s the yummy stuff in my opinion: the endless possibility of a dream life, for as long as I live 🙂
How about you? What’s your dream? How are you going to get there? Share below!

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!
Paola
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“It’s my time now!”

For all the Al Pacino fans out there, do you remember that scene in the Devil’s Advocate with Keenu Reeves when Al’s character, the Devil, claims: “This is my time Now!” ? I’ve always loved that part. I believe there is a pivotal time for each of us in our lives, sometimes several times in a lifetime, that tips the scale and leads us to glory. I told a dear friends months ago: “this is our time now” referring to the women movement. The recent events have shown that this is going forward at an exponential rate. I’m beyond excited at the prospect of the feminine being more present in our world, there are strengths and skills to be shared that will make a difference. I also want to share some words of wisdom and caution for the feminine and the masculine.
The feminine may enter this new phase with assertiveness and gusto, and not always enough experience to express in a kind way what we have been repressing for so long. I think of myself as a rather vocal person, and I know I have learnt to be quiet because it was expected or because it required less energy than to convey my true feelings of frustration. As we communicate more freely, we may enter a phase called by Marshall Rosenberg, the “obnoxious phase”. Verbalization is taking place, not always as compassionately and productively as it could be. It’s part of the process though. It won’t be perfect, but at least, it will be happening. Keep going, tweak as you go.
The masculine will have a hard time too. Not for the obvious reason that the men used to getting their way no longer will, but for the kind men that unknowingly have raised themselves offering micro aggression and never knew they were a source of pain. That’s because they were never told. I request patience for the masculine that does wish to be part of the new movement but was never held to develop the vulnerability the feminine craves.I especially feel for them as they have actively supported the feminine, we just didn’t give them all the tools to do the ultimate job. We believe we must be kind and understanding. This is going to be a big change.
I applaud any individual that has the courage to look at life in a different angle and change their way to best honor their authenticity.
Regardless at which stage of your life you do it, know that you are victorious. Some people will die and never experience that glory. High Five to you!

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!

Paola
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Don’t you just love making lists?

I love making lists, it’s the over accomplisher, slightly OCD side of me. I make lists for groceries, to-do’s and fun stuff. I have a list of goals too! And it’s January so let’s talk about goals. Rather let’s talk about ONE goal.

Over 80% of individuals make resolutions every year, that they quit on by the end of January. Why? Resolutions are made to be quit on, compared to goals that are made to be achieved. I invite you to trash your list of resolutions immediately, if you’ve made one. Resolutions come out of frustrations, social pressures and guilt from over indulging during the holidays, that’s why they don’t stick. Your ego comes up with resolutions, your authentic self comes up with the goals.

Goals are dreams with a game plan attached, which makes them more likely to come to fruition. Goals also have a true intention.

For example, a lot of individuals will plan on losing weight gained thanks to Mr Cookie and Lady Champagne. Do we want to lose weight to be healthier? To please our mate? To fit the social standards? The intention will define the outcome. Making a decision based on what other people will think will likely bring resentment and frustration. Setting a goal based on our core belief will fuel us to meet, if not surpass, that goal.

We don’t always meet our goals, we need to tweak the game plan, and that’s alright. That’s part of the process of getting better at whatever we learn to do. Be kind to yourself, be patient. All successful individual have one thing in common: they don’t quit, when it gets hard.

I invite you to:

-Set ONE goal that resonates with your true self

-Make a game plan, measurable, achievable, rewarding

-Reevaluate and tweak as needed

-Treat yourself when you reach your goal (very important)

-Repeat

By setting one goal at a time, you’re more likely to stay focused and make better use of your energy and headspace.

Change is hard, it is achievable with the proper method and intention though. You can do it!

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!

Paola

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Gratitude and Apologies

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, a national holiday I’ve only recently been involved with since my arrival in the U.S. in 1996. I don’t have any romantic or historic attachment to it. After years of working in retail, I’ve developed more sensibility to Black Friday than the day prior. I just never got into the whole Thanksgiving thing. I don’t even enjoy turkey, or football. I appreciate that this is an important day for a lot of people and I’m personally all about Gratitude!

I see a lot of posts and references to Gratitude.What brings me to pause is the idea that a lot of individuals will mention gratitude, however, they won’t feel grateful. The words are there, the intention is not. Gratitude can be a foreign concept for some. We’re brought up to say thank you, and in the U.S., we’re brought up with Thanksgiving. Gratitude could be assumed to be as natural as brushing our teeth, I know for a fact that it’s not. We say the words, however, the feeling is missing.

There are side effects to gratitude: joy, satisfaction, awareness and peace. With 70% of the U.S. population unsatisfied with their job alone, it is safe to assume that the gratitude factor is low. Considering the current political climate, it’s safe to say that joy and peace are pretty low as well. The eternal optimist in me refuses to bow down to the current events though, and I will stick to my silver lining attitude. That includes gratitude for living in a country that has carried so many inspirational individuals and still does. I want to focus on that.

I know we can shift from grim to grateful. I know it because I taught myself to do it. I know it can be done!

As I reflected about the feeling of gratitude, the closest model that came to mind was apologizing. As children, we’re taught to apologize if we were involved in a situation that had a negative impact on others. We’re taught to be accountable and to recognize the consequences of our actions. In the U.S., we even apologize for other people’s negative experiences we were not involved in. We do it out of sympathy. That’s nice, although empathy would be more productive in my opinion.

As we learnt to apologize as children, we may have been reminded to “mean it”. The words we use to apologize only carry so much weight, fully appreciating the situation and its consequences is what matters. Gratitude works the same way. Saying “thank you” is nice, meaning it is what really matters. Being able to be grateful as many days out of the year as possible is where magic happens.

Today, tomorrow, and the days after, I’m grateful for the people I met in my life that inspired me to tap into my inner strength to become the happiest version of myself to date.

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!

Paola

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Where’s your power?

If you follow my blog, you already know that I purchased a new-to-me car a few months ago. She rocks my socks off and she’s been so good to me so far. One thing I learnt about used cars is that they develop some personality traits after a few years. So when my Sterling decides to flash one way or another, or the door doesn’t shut for 24 hours, I just let it go. It never lasts, she’s having a moment, that’s all.

Her moment the other day was to have the clock reset itself to zero. I put the clock back to the right time once, I let it go the second time. I reflected on why I need a clock in my vehicle when I already practice perfect timing, I’m never late and I have the time on my phone anyway.

I grew up in an hostile and violent environment. One of the consequences of that childhood as an adult is working towards staying away from unsafe environments  and developing some overly controlling tendencies. I work at letting stuff go,almost everyday.

The clock in my car only reminds me that it took me 30 minutes instead of 15 to get to my destination. It’s a constant reminder that it can be challenging driving around a million people metropolis.Sometimes the clock reassures me that I’m on time, that being said, I’m always on time. I’d rather focus on being confident rather than needing reassurance. The first is power, the second is passive.

Being reassured has it’s place, it can be important. In the case of time, and my clock, I don’t find it necessary.

So where is your power? Your power is in realizing what you can’t change and stepping into what you can change.

You can’t change the weather, people’s impression of you or the fact that you will die one day. I invite you to spend time as little time as possible on those items.

What do you have power over? Your attitude, your goals and the company you keep. I invite you to spend as much time as you’d like on those items.

So the clock in my car is blank, I now have more head space to focus on my purpose 🙂

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!

Paola

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Are you getting in your own way?

I often receive feedback from individuals that are surprised to find out how much of an insomniac, pill popping, wine bingeing, stressed out, unhappy mess I used to be. I’ve come a long way, which is why I’m dedicating my time to inspire others to know they can get themselves out of any mess.

I wish for more individuals to feel confident to improve their life, wherever they’re at.

For me, it was a big change that required a lot of work, and I keep working on myself growing, that’s the fun part. I think the scary part for some is to look at the whole staircase when all you really need is to look at the first step. I didn’t improve in all areas of my life at once, I focused on one item at a time. And I got out of my own way 🙂

A few things will keep you from improving and growing, looking at the whole staircase instead of the first step to take is one of them.

Another is the company you keep. You’ve heard it before and you’ll keep hearing it: you are the average of the 5 individuals you spend the most time with. The reason why we keep hearing it is because it has proven to be true, over and over, in personal and professional life. Who do you talk to the most, who do you listen to, who do you spend time with? I’m bringing this up first because that will be the hardest thing you’ll ever have to do: walking away from somebody because you find out their influence has a negative impact on your life. Stay around such individuals and you are in self sabotage, pure and simple. Be strong and strategic, you can do it, your future self will thank you.

One more way to get in your own way is to say “yes”. As much as I personally love to hear the word (it’s a positive one right!?) that word can get you in more trouble and counterproductive situations than any other. I urge you to learn to say NO as much and as often as possible. You can always change your mind and say yes later. Being agreeable, wanting to make yourself available and present are great intentions. Your friends and colleagues will appreciate it of course. I invite you to make sure you say “yes” because you’re serving your purpose and not flattering your ego. Do you want to feel appreciated, wanted, relevant? Those are honorable needs. How you get there is more important as it will define your character and your results. Make sure the way you meet your needs is also in alignment with your purpose.

So which area of your life do you wish to improve today? Make a list of your top influencers or write down what you say “yes” to. Either of those techniques can help you make radical positive changes in your life, You can do it!

Reach out to the greatest version of yourself.

Paola.

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