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3 Ways to Repair a Relationship Rut

Feeling a disconnect between you and your partner? Perhaps even seething with anger and frustration toward him/her? You’ve been hurt or misunderstood. Or perhaps you’ve done the hurting or been misunderstanding. Relationships are full of ruptures – moments or experiences of missing each other on an emotional level. Often we feel wounded by the fracture.  “It’s like he doesn’t even know me!”  “She has no idea how much thought I put into this, and all I get is criticism!”   Get the Right Perspective When a rift occurs, the instinct is to fight, dwell, vent and stew- sometimes to friends and sometimes to our partners directly. Often the more we dig in, the more we prolong and deepen the pain. When emotions run high, it can feel that there is no way out. We decide we can only budge if     . . . read more

The Surprising Thing Authentic People Do (That You Probably Don’t)

Amongst people at dinner parties, networking events, and behind the closed door of my office, I hear, “I don’t want drama. I want honesty. I dislike fakey-fake.” Then invariably I hear this declaration from one of the people I just described, in response to some interpersonal issue they are having: “You know what the problem is? I’m just too nice!”  My response to this statement depends on the audience. If you have the misfortune of being my friend, I drop a (loving) truth bomb on you. Otherwise, I make my point a little more gently and in time. If you’re my blog reader, I’ll tell you like this: No, you are definitely not too nice. You can’t be too nice. What you are actually talking about is being dishonest, cowardly, and part of the problem you say you want to avoid.      . . . read more

The Overwhelm Cure: Using the Positive Power of No

I truly could not be more excited to be offering this workshop, The Overwhelm Cure: Using the Positive Power of “No”. It is designed to make a profound and immediate impact on managing stress and increasing joy by knowing how, when, and why to say “no” (while still being kind). Here are the details:  The Overwhelm Cure: Using the Positive Power of “No” Tuesday, May 24th from 5:30-8:30pm 203 Anderson Street, Portland Feeling overwhelmed by trying to do it all? Wishing there were more hours in your day? Checking all the boxes and still feeling unfulfilled? It’s time to find your confidence by saying “no” without apology.  Don’t wait another day to create time for things that truly matter.   This workshop is right for you if: You say “yes” to things that bog you down and end up feeling resentful.     . . . read more

Do You Need to Be Right?

The motivation is clear: it can feel so good, so powerful to be “right.” But is it really worth it? What do you gain? The truth is: you can pursue being right but at the cost of being unhappy. Basically, if you approach conversations, dialogue, or arguments with the intention to “win” or “be right” you are playing a lonely game. How we interact with others is not a sport. You can’t win, but you can certainly lose the relationship. Every interaction is a chance to connect or disconnect, to step towards understanding or discord. If you treat your interactions as a chance to “one up” another person, you are fundamentally missing the point. You will continue to create disconnection- even if you feel you have “won.” You have to decide what’s actually important- do you want to be right or     . . . read more

5 Ways Speaking Up Makes Our Lives Better

Yesterday I had the opportunity to co-facilitate a discussion on the theme “Dare to Speak Up and Be Heard” with the organization, Women Standing Together. It was a great group of interesting, competent, accomplished women. Still, most agreed on one thing: it’s too easy to hold back and not say things we want and need to say. Speaking up can be hard and scary. Too often, with women in particular, there is a fear that speaking up and saying things in a direct manner will produce negative emotional reactions in others and make us vulnerable to being seen as mean, defensive, stupid, or incompetent. My observations about effectively speaking up are different. I think the common outcomes of thoughtfully sharing our observations is a positive one. Here are some surprising and very real benefits of saying (skillfully) what’s on our     . . . read more

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