Tag Archives: mindsets



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Categories: Blog, Coaching & Couselling, Leadership Counselling, Tags: ,

TreefrogThis week was about having a struggle, wondering if I would have to give up on some of my dreams (including principles) or not. This weekend it all seemed to be combining when going to a seminar on internet marketing. It was called “Leap frogging” but the actual theme was about “Transformation”. The funny thing was that I’d been promised another transformation in my life the week before, so if this means this is telling for what the future might hold, things look promising to me.

Let’s start with a remark/observation which had been made. The Secret sounds nice, so does visualization, but it leaves out one important clue. Without the proper action, things won’t take off. The good news was I got to realize I’d already been working steadily on my dreams the last couple of years. It’s not the way I had expected things to run their course, but one way or another, things have been developing and I have been building a solid foundation for my practice, even when other people were inclined to show me differently.

Now it’s up to me to get that focus back on my dream(s), by taking a look at what I’ve achieved so far and see how I can use this. And this is what I’ve been doing lately and especially this weekend, continuing this very moment. The key factor here is “time” and I’ve become aware that one of the people, who somehow has started to play a very important part in my life, already pointed this out to me. Time is limited and should be spend wisely. Translated it would mean that every time we spend time on certain things, it should lead to something productive/useful.

The (public) commitment I made was to make a planning today, having to do with my business. At the course a certain expression was used, being the focus of a “shrimp” (thanx Eelco ;-)). Please forget about the “shrimp”. The term is merely used to keep remembering what it’s all about and it’s about doing multiple things at the same time and not achieving anything at all as a result. That’s how things work – up there – in my mind, if I do not control them and tell myself to do the important stuff. With everything I’ve done up till now, certain things may be achieved rather sooner than later, if I push through now.

So here it is again, the focus to keep on living my dream. If I’m going to let go off this focus in the next few days, I can forget about everything I’ve done up till now and life will be a complete disaster, so no, let’s not. Let’s keep that focus no matter what. The good thing is that with this part of the dream being realized, others will be able to be realized as well. There will be more time available to work for instance on project ESP or on something similar.

I’ve come to understand lately that maybe I should not just focus on this being the only option to get things proven, but just maybe there are other options as well. This makes me realize that what I got taught a year ago is proven to be very true. It’s not so much about the “how” but about the end result. When it comes to project ESP, this means proving (some of) the metaphysical (aspects) is (are) real. For my dreams it means this bit, but also being able to go on what I got to enjoy so much in life. Doing what I am good at.

Last year several people each tried to get to me to focus on different things. It was confusing to say the least. This had to do with the “how”. I am a person who’ll never just stick to one thing. I’ve never done so, even when working for a boss, I always had multiple roles, wherever I showed up. It seems it’s no different when it comes to what I’m doing now and each direction seems to be developing in its own pace. Whereas I’d expected the coaching to go into a certain direction, it seems to be going there, but the route is wondrous, to say the least. The most important clients are being picked up at the spiritual fair and they are the business people I like to interact with mostly.

Taking a look at the massage, I can tell you I never set out to do anything with this. It was the result of me wanting to be able to “feel” the muscles in the human body, instead of knowing all about them just from theory and doing exercises. Still the massage was what started my practice and all else followed. Being a therapist has never been based on the massage, this is based on working with the energy and even while having a license based on this field of expertise, I always said I wanted to remain “down to earth” and not be seen as the “woo” person, which is the direct result of that same field of expertise. As a coach I can get people to face reality, yet I work with that same energy and with mediations and visualizations. So somehow it all seems to mingle.

The focus however is not about realizing one specific aspect, while forgetting all else, my dream has to do with combining all of it, each at different levels. This can be done and the terminology is called “building”, ONE layer at a time. So focussing is still very important. Everything can be done, if done in the right order, which means I have to careful with this one thing which seems to evaporate very quickly, being time.

Combining focus with mindsets in order to accomplish this transformation, needed to keep on living my dream(s), it’s about using my knowledge on mindsets, meditation and affirmations, plus a lot of other stuff, like writing blog posts, to get the massage course going. I want people to know it’s something I got to develop and now is the time to make this happen.

The most amazing part while writing this, is realizing how everything just seems to interact. The writing of blog posts, leading up to articles. The exercises leading up to mind discipline. Setting up this website and meanwhile getting to practice a number of important aspects, all having to with internet (marketing). And now all comes back to this theme called “transformation”, combined with mindsets. It’s about showing others that what I say I stand for, I not only talk about, but in actuality practice. Whoa, that sounds like a lot, as in a huge responsibility. Then again, I believe we get what we can handle, so let’s see if I can live up to what I’ve said I wanted to do most and can do the best, being “living my dream”.


*Picture is courtesy of squidoo.com/cutefrogs


Stepping up to the plate

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Categories: Blog, Coaching & Couselling, Leadership Counselling, Tags: ,

For some time now I’ve been coaching someone on management level and today the subject was about “stepping up to the plate”. The biggest difference between coaching management and non-management is the way managers can be addressed and how quick they are ready to “really listen” and act upon what they’ve come to realize. Often there’s more at stake, so all the more reason to change what they’ve become aware of. The common nominator has to do with insecurity as result of changes. Even when working at a high level for a longer period of time, once in a new environment, roles change and become unclear and with this their attitude can change beyond recognition. They suddenly act like non-management, accepting everything that’s required from them to do. Question is whether this is wished for, or not.

All of us have certain skills. A number of people prefer to do whatever has been asked, no more, no less. Then there are those who are very creative and think out of the box. Others are helpful and / or not afraid of taking responsibility. A limited amount of people have the ability to take a step back and see what is already happening and then there are those who can see what is likely to happen, if certain routes will be continued. Take the latter groups who have the ability to “spot” things and combine this with taking responsibility and there is the question of whether or not someone dares to “step up the plate”.

Communication is a difficult subject. Not only do we have to deal with communication at work, but also within our private life. Remarkable is that any issues having to do with communication at work are also recognizable in personal relationships. Coaching management therefore is not only about coaching them at work, but also about how to deal with others in their private lives.

When someone has the ability to spot things others do not, one can argue whether or not they have the responsibility to do something with this skill. Would you be prepared to tell others what you’ve become aware of and, by telling them, support them in the possibility of making changes or would you just leave things the way they are? This question probably is best answered by looking at numerous aspects, starting with “do you feel this to be “justified” ”? If you were to address certain observations, would this feel like you are being a “tattletale” or would this be in the best interest of – say – the company? Is the way you are “exposing” the observations done in a way that is hurtful? Or can you tell in such a way that it’s not to be taken “personally”, won’t have any negative consequences for the people involved and will be beneficial to “all” in the long run?

If we are dealing with people who are not able or not eager to express their thoughts, communication can become very hard all of a sudden. Especially if there are a bunch of people who are not capable of or willing to do so. Would you like to have something changed, because you see it won’t work in the long run, it might be up to you to say it out loud.

Question next becomes if you have the courage to speak up. You might know what it is you want to say, but you simply may not dare to, not knowing whether it would be appreciated or not. By looking at the different possibilities of expressing what it is you want and comparing these to possible outcomes, an overview can be created, helping you decide what would be best for you and others involved. If you are certain the outcome will be positive, the next step is about taking action. Which leads us to the question: Would you be willing to “step up the plate”?

The client, I got to coach, realized that after “becoming aware”, action may be required, but in such a way, this will be acceptable for both him and his surroundings. He is already redefining his role and with it his responsibilities and actions. He’s going to do what he did best, before he changed environments. He’s going to be this observer, gather data and present this to his management-colleagues, accompanied by possible solutions.

When I started out this piece, I was talking about skills and I asked the question, whether or not someone could and would be willing to “step up the plate”. Possible insecurities were discussed, combined with personal thoughts and ethics. One thing got left out. What if you are able to take the next step, but you simply do not “want” to do so? You might want to consider if you are one of those people who has that rare ability to view things for what they are worth. If so, what would it cost you to act on it? What if it were to be beneficial to you? This willingness to look at things from this perspective and the ability to deal with this is what separates the “true managers” from the others. They have what it takes to take that extra mile, stepping up to the plate.


The importance of the right State of Mind

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Categories: Blog, Coaching & Couselling, Tags: ,

A while ago I wrote an article on Alternative Therapy. I described a number of aspects, varying from advantages to warnings. The advantages being an increased resistance, being more relaxed (also leading to a better resistance). The warnings have to do with never using alternative medicine on its own, but always as an addition to regular medicine. This piece will be about a similar warning, having to do with influencing your state of mind and with it, your mental health.

When it comes to your health, there are a number of key components: Your physical health, your mental health and then there’s something, which can not be specifically measured, but what everybody talks about and knows, being the amount of energy in your system. Mental components often influence the amount of energy you have (as in how you’re feeling and how much you can get done during the day) and in the long run also your physical health. When you have less energy, you’re resistance is likely to go down, which physical ailments being the result. The mental aspect is therefore a very important component for our health and with it for our wellbeing.

When getting support on a mental (psychological) level, it’s important that the whole process gets looked at. A number of professionals are very good at digging very deep, getting things to the surface, but next forget that it’s also their responsibility to let the person go home safe. By safe, I mean, without the risk of hurting oneself, because of emotions having come to the surface. This for instance happens when going to courses. People get send home, most of them are fine, but some of them are still very emotional and shaken up from what they’ve found out (experienced). Chances are, they will not pay enough attention on the road, with the necessary consequences.

Besides this happening when going to a course, it could also happen when going to a private session with a coach, counselor or even a psychologist. When people are working on a tight schedule, they may make you aware of certain mindsets, but not help you solve these mindsets, since you are running out of time. Since you’ll be returning next week any way (most of the time people with tight time schedules, also plan 5 sessions ahead), the resolution can wait for another week and you can get to think about it during this week. Wait a moment… wait another week (or worse even longer)???

Yes, it happens and I’ve seen a number of people who were completely depressed after such sessions. They had discovered their “dark” sides, uncovered certain habits and memories and next they were send off, without having been given any coping mechanisms. These people came from other coaches or psychologists and were extremely low in energy and didn’t know what to do. Next I got to patch them up, fix their mindsets, so they would become empowering, instead of draining away their energy, being the result of not knowing how to deal with the new (possibly rediscovered) knowledge.

When friends are helping out, they can cause the same effect. If they keep asking, they might uncover a hidden mindset. However they may not be trained to patch their friend back up again. So what to do next? Fortunately most friends are more about giving advice, then about listening and getting to those specific details and with it the mindsets behind them.

Besides professionals and/or friends, you might end up getting involved with people who want to make others aware of their mindsets. Let’s say for instance they ask you questions, which eventually show you that your ideas (let’s call it perspective on life) have been false all along. What will happen next, if your whole foundation, your whole life, had been built on this perspective? What will happen if you suddenly have been made aware that nothing adds up anymore and there’s no safety net, no one to give you the proper support on how to deal with this? Would you accept it if you then got told: “Oops sorry… not my field of expertise? I’m just here to give you a wake-up call?”

In each of the examples, whether having to do with professionals, amateur philosophers and/or well meaning friends, there’s a real risk involved. People might come out worse of a situation, then before they went in. When someone is “messing” with your mind, whether well meant or not, it’s very important to be aware of the possible results. If you cannot be helped while being in “trouble”, you shouldn’t be given this wakeup call to begin with.

So, if you ever are to get involved in such a process, be careful that what’s been started can also be finished. If it can’t be finished, or you are not willing to let others help you get through the whole process, you might not even want to have people start digging in your mind to begin with. Getting things ditched up (again) and not having these resolved, can be way more dangerous for your state of mind, as in leaving things be. You’re better off being unhappy, than being confronted with your worst fears and not knowing what to do with this.

Going back to the beginning of this piece, I was talking about alternative medicine and working with people who are not qualified or trained to do what they pretend to be doing. This can also be applied to people in regular healthcare (psychologists for instance) and/or people in the alternative circuit. Make sure, you always go see a properly trained professional, who knows what he or she is doing and will take the responsibility to make sure you return home/stay safe at all times. You always want to make sure that if hidden mindsets are dug up and/or certain ideas or memories get uncovered, there’s someone to fall back upon, making sure you can get back in the right state of mind. And yes, you may have doubts in the process, but as long as you feel secure, despite these doubts, and you have a safety net, you will most likely be fine.

Finishing this story on the importance of the right State of Mind, I want to emphasize, the importance of those people who are willing and able to help others find out their own “truth”. Reaching people’s hidden mindsets and uncovering unknown “blind spots” is an art in itself. Some people are good at it, while others will never be, or even worse, won’t even care to (listen). If you are one of those people who have such a special persons in your surroundings, who can reach your hidden mindsets and get them uncovered, you might be very lucky (providing you let them work with you). Know that these people can take pride in what they do, since only few people can seriously listen to others, while also getting through to them, making them listen, and understand. By doing so, they can and will (seriously) improve other people’s lives.



Confirmation Bias & Mindsets

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How to deal with Confirmation Bias & Mindsets?

Every once in a while I get into a discussion having to do with explaining how certain things are picked up on. This one has to do with “how to approach people in order to get through to them”, or better yet how to deal with “Confirmation Bias”. How is someone best approached in order to have him or her listen?

Before going on, some things should be explained when it comes to “Confirmation Bias”. People talk about Confirmation Bias when others have certain specific ideas and they are not open to changing these. On the surface they seem to be open and to be listening but when taking a closer look, they actually are not. It took me till very recently to understand this principle. It wasn’t until I was being told the following until I started to see what was actually being meant:

“It’s the whole reading comprehension thing again. You evidently read between the lines and see precisely what you want to see.”*

My first response was:

“There’s a very big difference between reading between the lines (noticing what’s not been said and getting into this) and only noticing what I want to see (this is called a blind spot, as a result of a mindset).”

The answer:

“The two things aren’t mutually exclusive. You can set out to notice “what’s not being said” because it’s what you want to notice. Or, you can notice face-value language and see it how you want to see it.”

Later adding:

“Two words: Confirmation bias.”

While first thinking “Confirmation Bias” was nothing more than being aware (reminded) of what the “so-called” bias (for others “the true belief”) is, it turns out there’s a whole lot more to it. Looking it up on the net I found an article explaining that this is about looking for evidence as in confirming what was already thought of and overlooking all else, which could be contradictive to the already adopted beliefs (note what was being said before: [You] “see precisely what you want to see”). They added that in order to find out the “truth”, it’s important to have people involved who represent the other side.

This leads me straight to question number two. How to approach people who are (almost) certain to only see (and hear) what they want to comprehend (as in being blinded by their own mindsets)?

Does it require being polite or the exact opposite as in being blunt? Does someone need to get angry first and what would the result be? What I said when talking on about confirmation bias and how things were said to me was:

“It’s the way you can say things to me and the impact they have on me. And then there’s me thinking about the truth behind it, making me see things differently.”

The response was:

“Show me the polite way to let someone know that their personal beliefs about how the world operates could be mistaken, and I’ll show you a person who will let it in one ear and out the other.”

Personally I do no think this has anything to do with being polite. It has to do with getting through to someone, which requires being “straight-forward” about what it is you want to say to the other person, leaving no question marks whatsoever. The other aspect is being respectful.

The first aspect sounds easy enough until/unless someone is not willing to listen. This can be easily recognized. If someone chatters on or stops only briefly to go on straight away about another subject, this is very revealing. What’s important is to do what it takes to get someone’s attention. This can vary from touching someone on the knee, forcing to look at you to getting completely silent and see what happens next. Depending on the situation and the relationship the methods will vary.

When being on the net (only relying on text and no live images), things become a little harder. What if someone does listen to you, but does not respond back about it? Is it by repeating the same words/lines all over again that someone shows he or she is not listening? Can it be that part is understood and part is not? And if so, what to do? Repeat it all over again (or partly) just in other words? How can you check what is understood and what’s not?

Then there is the second aspect called respect. If someone gets angry, upset or emotional, does this show respect to the other one? And better yet (or even worse), what kind of reaction does it trigger? If lucky the other ones does not respond at all, or it only gets noticed and something is being said about it, reminding the other one of his or her responsibility. Worst case scenario the other starts to yell or scream even louder, a very normal reaction, leading to nowhere.

When we are talking mindsets, we are dealing with the subconscious part. This can be triggered by emotions and/or by going into extremes. Showing a mirror can work very well, but is not always the easiest thing to do. Then there is also the part of showing trust, confidence and/or patience towards the other person, which gives one the chance to let his one’s guard down and get closer to this (hidden) mindset. Safety is “key” when you want to access parts which are hidden in the subconscious part of the mind. Taking someone along on the path to the (sometimes painful) truth may still be hard, but when done so with enough respect and trust, it’s acceptable, however difficult it may seem.

Someone recently send me this message:

“It’s really nice to speak to you. Even if it often feels like you’re pulling me further down while I feel like I’m drowning in misery, with you questioning my thinking and intentions… you still manage to always pull me back up above the surface where I can breath. You’re amazing. I feel better now that I did this morning.

She’s a wonderful person, willing to look at herself, showing guts by doing so. And sometimes I can be really “blunt” to her, to access those mindsets and to make things (patterns) visible to her. Doing so, I also remind her of the things she’s already done and the good aspects coming out of the whole process and with it, there’s trust.

Looking back on this story, I’d say we all have hidden mindsets, causing us to act conform “confirmation bias”. Not all of us are so lucky to have someone in our surroundings to point this out and while these persons might be rather annoying and sometimes even hurtful, they are the truly special people which deserve treasuring. How many people do you know who dare to tell you the truth, see the world differently, and thus making you able to grow? If you do, you might want to think about this story next time you would like to lash out at someone who’s giving it to you straight :-). I most certainly will and do, however hard sometimes!


* All quotes (in Italics and with exception of the last one) are made by someone I talk to daily on his blog, also known as TS. TS is constantly showing me new insights when it comes to my own mindsets and beliefs, never giving up, even when things seem pointless. Even when not knowing where this will lead me, when talking about my own “’experiences” and “beliefs”, it helps me to see things in better perspective, uncovering my own (limiting) mindsets. Being both a coach and counsellor, I’m more appreciative about this than anyone will, most likely, ever know.