Build Your Tomorrow

Tips for how to create your best life. Do you have a growth mindset? What can you change about your life now? How do your foresee your ideal future? Do you understand your true potential? How can you move forward with purpose? Life Coaching tips by Clarity Coaching Services.

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Episodes

Thursday Jun 16, 2022

Choose your values, base your actions and decisions on them, and your life will become happier and more fulfilled. For more information, please visit https://claritycoachingservices.com

Tuesday Jun 14, 2022

Understanding that there is a part of you that doesn't change and remains safe, no matter what life events you experience, can help you stay objective and find peace during difficult times. For more information, please visit https://claritycoachingservices.com

Thursday Jun 09, 2022

There is strength and healing in being in the present. How can you avoid being distracted by the past and the future so you can focus on enjoying today?   For more information, please visit https://claritycoachingservices.com

Tuesday Jun 07, 2022

You don't need to automatically believe every thought that pops into your head. Distance yourself from your thoughts and look at them objectively. Choosing to focus on the positive thoughts can lead to personal growth. For more information, please visit https://claritycoachingservices.com

Saturday Jun 04, 2022

Accepting your feelings and emotions can lead to greater progress and growth in your life. You can't go around them -- you must go through them. For more information, please visit https://www.claritycoachingservices.com

Tuesday May 31, 2022

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy principles can help you move forward when you are stuck. Learn the 6 basic principles of accepting your life and committing to change. For more information, please visit http://www.claritycoachingservices.com

Sunday May 29, 2022

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Techniques can change your life and the way you move forward. What is it, exactly? For more info, please visit https://www.claritycoachingservices.com

Tuesday May 24, 2022

Do you know exactly what you're looking for in a life partner? Ask yourself these questions to focus your search and find the right match. PART 2    http://www.claritycoachingservices.com       TRANSCRIPT:   Hi, I’m Carol with Clarity Coaching Services and I’m here to share some tips on how to build your best life. Today I’m going to offer some tips on how to determine what you are looking for in a life partner, to clarify what things you're looking for and what things you need.  I’ve compiled a list of questions based on my own life experience and also the experiences of people I know. Along the lines of kids, if there are kids involved, parenting styles -- what is their parenting style? How do they set boundaries or discipline? What routines do they have with their kids, if they have kids already? Maybe you're young; maybe you don't have kids. Do they have nieces and nephews? How do they act around kids, if you want to have kids someday or you do have kids. These are good things to know and are any of these things deal breakers? Geographical location -- again this is flexible; people move a lot nowadays, so choosing someone based on their geographical location may not be the wisest idea, but it's certainly something to consider. Where do you want to live? Would you be willing to move to be with a well-matched partner?  Where are you going to look for your partner? Geographical location might be a consideration -- are you willing to look outside your current geographical area to find a true partner? Would you consider a long-distance relationship? Are any of these things deal breakers? Time with a partner -- this is also something to consider, and many people don't. They assume that because they're in a new relationship and they're spending a lot of time together, they love being with each other, that this is the way it's always going to be. But once that wears off, and real life happens, things change. So how much time would you like to spend with your partner each day? What is the minimum amount of time you would like to spend with your partner each day? Are you the kind of person that wants to see their partner an hour or two a day? Would you like eight hours a day? Do you want to work with your partner? Are you comfortable with your partner traveling half of the month? How (I don't want to say how needy are you, because that's not really a fair way to put it), but would you be okay if your partner traveled frequently? And are any of these things deal breakers? Be honest about how much time and attention you would like from your partner. How much time would they like with you? Are you comfortable with how much time they would want with you, or how little time? Health -- are there healthy behaviors that you would require your partner to have? Maybe you are a vegetarian and you just couldn't stand to live with someone who ate meat. Are there any unhealthy habits that you would not like your partner to have? You know, maybe they only shower once a week, or they don't floss as often as you would. I’m not judging, I’m just saying do you have any preferences or requirements that would be deal breakers in a partner?  Are there any physical or mental health issues that you would not like your partner to have? Are you pretty open and understanding if a partner suffers from occasional anxiety or depression or anything like that? Or are any of those deal breakers? Nowadays, you are going to have a hard time finding someone who doesn't have any kind of issues but be upfront and honest about what you can handle and what you can’t. How do you feel about a potential partner having a current or past addiction? Maybe you've had a past addiction and you would rather not partner up with someone who also has. Maybe you want someone who can be that strong rock to lean on or maybe you would like someone who understands what you've gone through and shares that past. So are any of these things deal breakers? Cleanliness -- how clean and neat would you like your partner to be? How clean and neat do you require your house to be? Or your car? Would you be able to compromise on the level of cleanliness or neatness to accommodate your partner? Maybe you're a neat freak or maybe you're not. Maybe you don't think folding your underwear is a big deal and it's not a requirement, or making the bed every day. Does it matter if your partner wants that and you had to start accommodating and doing that? Or what if you want the dishes to always be done in the sink and your partner doesn't mind if they sit there for a day -- are you going to be able to handle that? Are any of these things deal breakers? Physical appearance -- most people have a pretty good idea of what they want their partner to look like (or at least what they don't want them to look like). Some people have a type, and some people don't have a specific type but they know they're attracted to certain people and not others. So what would your ideal partner look like? Would you be accepting if their appearance changed? I hope that answer is yes, because no one is going to get through this life without their appearance changing at some point. Are any physical traits deal breakers? I don't know what else to say about this, except that yes, attraction is important and chemistry is important, but be prepared that things like that are not permanent, necessarily. Health -- what level of physical fitness would you like your partner to have? Are you someone who exercises an hour a day? Do you go train for marathons or are you someone that would really rather not get on the treadmill? What kind of physical fitness do you have and what would you like your partner to have? Are there any deal breakers for you in the area of health and physical fitness? How comfortable are you with being at different levels if your partner is not on the same track as you? Physical relationship -- what would your ideal physical relationship look like? What level affection, what level of intimacy? Would you be comfortable with a physical relationship that was not evenly matched? What if you really love hugging and kissing and holding hands in public and your partner just can't stand any kind of PDA -- are you comfortable with that or would that be a deal breaker? What if your desire for intimacy is not on the same level as the other person's -- how far apart can you be with that level of intimacy and still be happy in your relationship? Is there anything that would be a deal breaker? This kind of thing should be discussed before you get into a life partner relationship with somebody. Commitment level and exclusivity -- what kind of commitment level/exclusivity of relationship do you want your partner to have with you? Nowadays you just never know -- you may assume that you're looking at marriage and monogamy and commitment for the rest of your life, but your partner may not be. What is the minimum commitment level and exclusivity of relationship you would be okay with your partner having? If you want to get married, if you want to be together and exclusive and monogamous for the rest of your life, you need to be open about that with your partner and make sure they're on the same page. Is there anything that is a deal breaker in this area? Trust -- what kind of trust level do you require with your partner? Would you require absolute honesty or would you overlook a white lie? What level of trust could you give to your partner and how would you handle a breach of trust? Is anything a deal breaker in this area? Trust looks like many things to many different people -- some people think the occasional white lie is okay if it protects someone's feelings, Or like, ‘Oh, yes, honey, I took out the trash,” and then you hurry and take it out because you hadn’t taken out the trash. Is that okay? Or from something small like that, all the way up to cheating on someone? How would you handle a breach of trust, little or big? Is anything a deal breaker in this area? Make sure you're on the same page with your partner about what trust looks like, because that can cause issues if you're not on the same page. Equality/division of responsibility -- what kind of equality level do you want in your relationship? Do you want to be on equal footing as far as finances and chores and decision making and all those things? Are you comfortable with your partner taking on the majority of the responsibilities in certain areas like finance or household chores or kids or whatever? What are your expectations of your partner regarding financial contributions to the household? What are your expectations regarding child care? Are any of these things deal breakers? Make sure you understand these things before you commit to a long-term relationship with somebody. Decision making -- how does your partner make decisions, what style of decision making do they have? Are they someone who makes a snap decision like “Let's move to Bermuda tomorrow!” Or are they someone who thinks about something for a couple of months or a couple of years? What is your decision-making style and would your decisions be made together in your relationship? Maybe some decisions would be made together and certain decisions could be made individually. What is that going to look like and in what areas is it okay to make a separate decision? What are you going to do if you can't agree on something that involves both of you -- how are you going to handle that? It’s very important to discuss this. Investment in the search – meaning, how much time per week are you willing to invest in searching for a well-matched partner? And how much money per week are you willing to invest in searching for a well-matched partner? And how far are you willing to travel to find a well-matched partner? When you think of searching for a job, searching for a house, searching for a car, searching for a new fridge, or whatever, it takes some time to do the research if you want to find something that's going to work for you long-term. When it comes to finding a life partner, what are you willing to let go in order to find one? Are you willing to move out of your current location? Are you willing to put some money into traveling to activities, into online dating services, into whatever it is to help you find someone? If you're willing to spend a certain amount of time to find the right house, the right job, the right car, a good rule of thumb is to spend at least that amount to find the right partner. It's not really something that can happen just by pure luck.  I know most of us have grown up with the idea portrayed in romantic comedies or Disney movies or whatever that the true love will just somehow appear -- it's serendipity, it's fate or whatever. But the reality is you have to know what you want and you have to go out and look for it. Where to search -- where could you look for a well-matched partner? Now is the time to start coming up with action steps. What events could you attend to look for a well-matched partner? Brainstorm and think of anything you can. What apps could you use to look for a well-matched partner? What clubs or groups could you attend to look for a well-matched partner? And which friends or relatives could you trust to set you up? No one likes blind dates -- I get that -- but who knows you the best? Your friends and your relatives. They may or may not know the people that they're trying to set you up with that well, but you could at least assume that they have your best interests at heart and they are trying to find someone that's a good match. So give them the benefit of the doubt, maybe -- what's one date, right? Now it's time to summarize the qualities you're looking for. So you have your must-have list over here on the left, and then you have your deal breaker list over here on the right -- what you're not willing to accept under any circumstances. That can help you narrow down who to continue a relationship with. A Action steps for your search – look at those last questions that we discussed, what to do. Write down a list of things that you can do and by when. For instance, some might write down, “‘I will look for three online dating services with good reviews and reputations. I will join three online dating services. I will join three local community clubs. I will attend three community events. I will tell my friends and my relatives that I am looking for a life partner and tell them exactly what I’m looking for.” Things like that. And then write down by when you will do them. It's very important to hold yourself accountable, or you might just put this off. That is the last slide and the last step that I have listed here. Of course once you write down what to do and when you're going to do it by, make sure you follow through and do it. It doesn't hurt to have a friend or a relative be your mentor and guide during this process. Make sure that as you are dating and looking for a life partner, that you use caution and that you do background checks, and that you are very careful.  Just use your best judgment. So good luck! Hope that helps! END OF PART 2 For more information, you can contact me at my website claritycoachingservices.com.     

Thursday May 19, 2022

Do you know exactly what you're looking for in a life partner? Ask yourself these questions to focus your search and find the right match. PART 1  http://www.claritycoachingservices.com      TRANSCRIPT:   Today I’m going to offer some tips on how to determine what you are looking for in a life partner, to clarify what things you're looking for and what things you need.  I’ve compiled a list of questions based on my own life experience and also the experiences of people I know. First of all, what character traits do you want your partner to have? What are the most important character traits for them to have?  Not physical traits, but character traits. For example, you might put honesty, kindness, humor, reliability -- those are all character traits. Just make a list of five or six things that you really want your partner to have and then from that list decide which ones are deal breakers if they don't have it. For example, if they don't have honesty as a character trait, is that a deal breaker for you? Now the next slide is what character traits do you NOT want your partner to have? It's very similar to the first question; it just helps you look at it in a different way. What character traits do you not want your partner to have? You might put dishonesty or laziness -- I don't know things that you do not want your partner to have. Which ones are deal breakers if they do have it? Perhaps you might say, “I don't want my partner to have the character trait of selfishness and that would be a deal breaker if they have it. Perhaps I want them to have a sense of humor, but lack of a sense of humor would not necessarily be a deal breaker. However, selfishness -- that would be a deal breaker for me,” if that's what you believe. Looking at their character in depth, let's dig deeper and determine what kinds of things we would like the partner to have in their character. How would you want your partner to treat their friends? How would you want your partner to treat their family? How would you want your partner to treat their co-workers, their boss, or employees? And very important, how would you want your partner to treat you? These questions are important, because in the initial stages of getting to know someone, people are usually on their best behavior. They're excited, and it's not that they're deliberately trying to be something they're not, but everything's brand new, everything's wonderful; you're seeing things through rose-colored glasses. A good indication of what their character really is like is to look at how they treat their friends, their family, their co-workers, their boss, their employees.  Not necessarily right now (although that's important), but also in the past. What has that been like? That is probably the best indicator of how they will treat you in the future. Moving on -- how about intelligence or conversation level in a partner? Intelligence is a term that can be viewed in different ways by different people -- there are different types of intelligence and there are different ways to measure intelligence. When it comes down to it, it's about what kind of conversations do you want to be able to have with your partner, what kind of conversation level. So if you're someone who loves to discuss politics, and all the details of different issues, you might want someone who can do that with you. If you love to talk about the arts -- different themes in movies or books or things like that -- you might want to be able to talk about that with your partner. Maybe not -- maybe being able to talk about those things with friends is okay. What is the minimum intelligence or conversation level you would be okay with your partner having?  What is the very least you want to be able to do with your partner? Maybe they don't have to discuss the ins and outs of politics with you, but you might want them to be able to at least understand what your opinions are on certain subjects and issues. Their communication style -- how well and how often would you want your partner to communicate about their feelings and thoughts? We know this is very important because communication can make or break a relationship. If you want to discuss every little thing about your relationship, and they are constantly putting up a wall and not wanting to talk about it, that might not be a great match. However, not everyone is going to have the exact same communication style as you, so you have to decide what is the minimum level of communication you're willing to accept. Maybe you are the one that doesn't want to have to rehash everything in the relationship; maybe you just want to be able to communicate about the most important things, and not beat it to death. How would you want to handle disagreements with your partner? Everybody has disagreements -- it's how you handle the disagreements that can be an issue in relationships. When you disagree, do you fight? Do you throw things? Do you sulk in your bedroom? Or do you talk about them effectively and calmly and with respect? What would be your ideal way to solve problems together? What would you like to do, what seems reasonable to you? Are any of these things deal breakers? The next subject is spiritual or life beliefs. What kind of spiritual or life beliefs do you want your partner to have? Do they need to share a certain religion? Do they just need to share a certain life philosophy? Does it matter to you if they don't share those things? What is the minimum spiritual or life belief level you would be okay with your partner having? Along with that, what kind of political beliefs would you be okay with your partner having? Are any of these deal breakers? These are things that you don't necessarily need to discuss the first time you meet someone, or the second or the third, but if it appears that you're on the way to developing a longer term relationship with this person, these are important things to consider. Hobbies and interests -- what kind of hobbies or interests would you like your partner to have? Maybe you like to go mountain climbing, maybe you like to go boating, maybe you like to garden. Does it matter if your life partner shares those same hobbies? Or is it okay as long as you have your time to do your interests and they have their time to do theirs? What hobbies or interests would you not like your partner to have? Maybe you really don't want your life partner to have high risk sports as a hobby. Maybe you really don't want them to go mountain climbing or rock climbing or hang gliding or whatever. Is that a deal breaker? Are you okay if you don't share hobbies as long as you share life goals and communication styles? Education -- what kind of education do you want your partner to have? Does it matter to you if they have a college degree, or they don't have a college degree? If they have a high school diploma or a GED or not? Maybe you're a brain surgeon and you want your partner to have a PhD in something, I don't know. What is the minimum education you would be okay with your partner having? Age -- what age range do you want your partner to be in? Do you want them within five years of your age? Would you be okay if they were 10 years younger than you as long as they were an adult? Would you be okay if they were 20 years older than you? What is the minimum and maximum age you would be okay with your partner being? Is that flexible? Does that matter if you share the same beliefs, and you are really a great match? Job and income -- what kind of job or income do you want your partner to have? Some people make this a priority; they want their life partner to have the same level of income as they do, at least. Or maybe they want their partner to have more than they do, I don't know. What kind of job or income do you want your partner to have? Is that important to you? What is the minimum job or income you would be okay with your partner having? One word of caution here: jobs and income nowadays can be very flexible. You may marry someone who's making two hundred thousand dollars a year in the tech field and then five years from now they could be out of a job. Things happen -- with the stock market, real estate, whatever. A word of advice is not to choose a life partner based on things that might be temporary, like jobs or income, or where they live, because those things could change. Even appearance -- that's going to change. What's not going to change generally are their basic character traits. But that said, let's move on. How does your partner handle money? Are they a super saver or are they a spend-thrift? Are they somewhere in the middle? How does that match with your style -- are your spending and saving styles compatible? Are any of these things deal breakers? Family and kids -- what kind of family or number of kids do you want to have? Do you already have kids? Are you comfortable raising someone else's kids? If so, does the age of those kids matter? Maybe you're middle-aged, and you're okay if your life partner has some older kids, but you're not ready to raise babies again. Does that matter? Does it matter if there is an ex in the picture? Does it bother you if there's someone else involved on a regular basis? Are any of these things deal breakers? These are good conversations to have before you really jump into a life partner type of relationship with somebody.   END OF PART 1  For more information, you can contact me at my website claritycoachingservices.com.    

Tuesday May 17, 2022

Communication skills can make or break a relationship, whether it's with business associates, family or friends. Learn some tips to help you do it better. http://www.claritycoachingservices.com     TRANSCRIPT:  In this segment I’m going to talk about communication. Listening is a very important part of communication, of course, so avoid doing these things: daydreaming or thinking of something else while another person is speaking, thinking of what to say next, making judgments about what the other person is saying, and listening with a specific goal or outcome in mind. Do you do any of those things? I have been guilty occasionally of doing those things.  This is from an article in positivepsychology.com. Also in that article, Listening Do’s -- do show genuine interest in your communication partner. Use appropriate nonverbal involvement; show your attention: eye contact, face towards them, and maybe even lean toward them, if necessary. Pay attention to your communication partner, not your own thoughts, no judgment and tolerating silence. It's okay to be silent -- you don't have to always fill in the space with words. Communication 10-10 Exercise -- also from positivepsychology.com. Each person gets 10 minutes to talk. Set a timer, if necessary. The first person talks about their day, the issue at hand, or whatever. The second person should listen attentively and not interrupt during that time. They can ask questions to clarify the issues at the end, but otherwise they don't interrupt. Then you switch -- the second person gets to talk for 10 minutes, and the first person listens attentively. Pay attention during this time to what the person is really saying. Seek to understand not to educate or inform or change. Be sure you follow the Listening Do's and Don'ts during that exercise. In communication there are defensive and supportive communication styles. This is based on Jack Gibbs’ work. For example, a defensive statement would be, ‘You make me angry.’ A more supportive statement would be, ‘I feel angry when that happens.’ A defensive statement would be, ‘We should do X Y Z tomorrow; we should clean the garage tomorrow.’ A more supportive statement, which should get a better response from your partner, would be, ‘When should we clean the garage?’ It gives them some input; it's not controlling. A defensive statement would be, ‘You don't call me as often as so and so does.’ A more supportive statement would be, ‘You know, I miss hearing from you.’ But you have to be careful how you say that; you don't want to do it in a way that provokes guilt feelings. A defensive statement would be, ‘You didn't do it today. Okay, well, do it tomorrow then.’ A more supportive statement would be, ‘I’m sorry you've been so busy. When do you think you'll have time to do this?’ A defensive statement would be, ‘I’m the one who is earning the money (or went to college or is older), so listen to me.’ A more supportive communication statement would be, ‘What do you think about this?’ A defensive statement would be, ‘Let me show you the right way to do it.’ A more supportive way to say that is, ‘One way that works for me is…’ So try using more supportive statements in your relationship or with your co-workers and see what happens. There are different communication styles -- some people want to talk it out right away and then they just talk, talk, talk. Some people want to think it over; they might want to go and be alone and mull it over in their mind for a while. So if one of you is a talk-it-out person and one of you is a think-it-over person, some compromise can be necessary. Make sure both of you are in a good headspace before having a conversation about an emotionally charged subject. If someone isn't ready to talk, agree on a later time to go over the issue when both of you are calm. It's not about just what you say, it's also about how you say it. Be mindful of the following things: there's pitch and volume. When people are upset, sometimes their voice’s pitch will become higher and they will speak louder, and this can put their partner on the defensive. Pace -- if you're excited or angry, you might speak faster than usual, so slow down and you can get your point across better, and you can bring calmness to the conversation. Tone -- what emotions are reflected in your voice? People can tell when you're being sarcastic, or you're feeling angry, if you let those tones come into your voice. You can use humor to de-escalate a situation, as long as it is done properly and isn't used to tease the other person. They're probably not going to be receptive to teasing right then, so it has to be a legitimately humorous comment. This is based on Chris Argyris’ The Ladder of Inference. There's what you intend to say, what you actually say, what the other person hears, and what the other person thinks you meant. So that's how miscommunication can happen. Here's the actual ladder -- so down at the bottom you have the pool of observable data. Then you have the ladder with the rungs and it's kind of in a reflexive loop. Our beliefs tend to affect what data we select and vice versa. We're looking at these observations, we're making a selection, we add meanings to them, and then we make assumptions based on our meanings that we just created. We draw conclusions from our assumptions, and then we adopt beliefs based on our conclusions. We take actions based on our beliefs. So if our observation was incorrect, or the meaning we gave to those observations, or the assumptions… All those different rungs of the ladder there, they might mess us up. So instead of jumping to conclusions, make sure you analyze and test the assumptions, meanings, and selected data and observations that created those conclusions. I hope this gives you some communication tips. For more information, you can contact me at my website claritycoachingservices.com.   

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