5 Audacious Agreements that Empower

5 Audacious Agreements That EmpowerUnlike written or verbal contracts we make to provide a service or product, sometimes we make agreements with ourselves and other people that we are not even aware we made. And, when our expectations fall short of our desired outcome, we become angry, disillusioned, frustrated and confused.

For example, you may live with an unspoken agreement that conflict is to be avoided at all cost by not speaking up when there is a disagreement or difference of opinion. You may soon discover that avoiding conflict never gets anything resolved – just shoved under the proverbial rug.

Instead of going with the flow and operating from agreements that limit, define and get in the way of being your true self, here are 5 audacious agreements that empower so that the real you shines through:

Agree to ditch the labels – Mom, daughter, sister, wife or girlfriend is merely a label assigned to women by society. You are much more than a label. Labels don’t define who you really are anymore than tags in designer clothes tell you anything about the designer. Who you really are goes much deeper than any of the labels that you wear.

Agree to squash relationship drama – All relationships (marital, family, friends, co-workers and neighbors an even the relationship you have with yourself) will eventually hit a bump in the road. Are you clear about the kind of relationships you want to have in your life? Do you have relationships filled with confusion, temper tantrums, manipulation or deception? I hope not. But if you’ve ever experienced such behavior in a relationship, it may be time to assess how clear you are about who YOU are. Attracting drama into your life is usually an indication that you are giving others permission to set the tone of the relationship. You can change the dynamics of any relationship if you set clear boundaries about what you will accept and how you want to be treated.

Agree to say “no” like a 2 year old –One of the first words a toddler learns is the word “no”. That’s because she wants to be heard and express their assertiveness. Toddlers already have this down pat. She says “no” loud, clear and with conviction. Of course you don’t have to yell but certainly speak loud enough to be heard.

What happens to that conviction and assertiveness when we reach adulthood?

Unfortunately, once we leave toddlerhood, we seem to forget how to be assertive, express our wishes and think independently. Saying “no” is not meant to be antagonistic, difficult or mean spirited.

Saying “no” means that you set limits on what you are willing to do or give, what you’re capable of and how you desire to spend your time and energy.

Make an agreement to set realistic expectations – I agree with Dr. Phil when he says, “what upsets people is not what happens. What upsets people is if what happens violates their expectation of what was going to happen!”

Examine the expectations you have for yourself and others. Make sure they are realistic so as not to end up frustrated, angry or disappointed when things don’t turn out the way you hoped.

Agree to show more gratitude – When you consistently show gratitude for the things you already have, you open the window to receive more. An easy way to begin the practice of gratitude is to write down the things you are grateful for. You can use a journal to record your gratitude or write what you are grateful for each day and place it in a jar or other container. When you need a boost, go to your gratitude journal or jar for added inspiration.

And, to learn more about empowerment and being your true self, I invite you to get my book, Master the Genie Within: Uncover, Embrace and Celebrate the Real You.

Silent Agreements You Make With Yourself

An agreement is defined as  coming to a mutual arrangement, the state of being in accord or an arrangement that is accepted by all parties to a transaction.

There are many types of agreements that we enter into such as a legal contract, an agreement to provide a service or product or an agreement to give or do a favor for someone and then there are the silent agreements we make with ourselves.

Silent agreements rob you of your voice and power and often guide you into making decisions that are counterproductive to your true wishes.

Silent agreements are the unspoken rules and beliefs that you internalize about how, why and what things you allow to influence you.  These agreements are not legal or binding.  No one has forced, persuaded or cajoled you into making these agreements.

Some of the silent agreements that may hinder, limit or influence your life are:

  • Taking responsibility for everything and everyone in your life.  For example, when you take on more and more responsibility than is yours, you’ll find yourself   running on the hamster wheel until you wear yourself out.  Allow others to be responsible for the things that they are responsible for.
  • Staying stuck because of fear and doubt – Fear of being accepted, loved, validated or liked will show up in how you relate to the people in your life and the choices you make.
  • Pleasing everyone but yourself – When you are busy making sure that everyone is happy and getting along, how happy are you in that role?
  • Saying “yes” when you really want to say “no”.  Learning to say no and mean it is an empowering act that increases your confidence.
  • Using disparaging comments about yourself.

You may not be consciously aware that you’ve made these silent agreements with yourself.  But with a little digging, you can uncover these silent agreements, make new affirming agreements and be on your way to revealing your true self.

Here are a few suggestions to get you started:

  1. Take responsibility for only those things you have absolute control of.
  2. Use affirmations, positive self-talk to overcome fear and self-doubt.
  3. Learn to use no as a complete sentence without explanation when saying yes infringes unduly on your time, energy and desires.
  4. Make sure your needs register on the priority scale.  Carve out some “self-care” time to replenish your energy and clear your mind of clutter.
  5. Use empowering words like, “I choose” instead of “I have to” so that you are expressing clearly what you want, can do and are willing to accept.

Our silent agreements only serve to deceive others and us as we hide our true selves.

To learn more about how silent agreements influence your daily life and to uncover your true self, I encourage you to start by getting my book, Master the Genie Within where you will gain more insight, tools and resources to help you on your journey.

 

 

Build Relationship Resiliency

Build relationship resiliency so that you have strong relationships with your partners, family, friends and colleagues. All of the relationships you have hinge on the one you develop with yourself.

When your inner relationship suffers, all other connections fall short of being as effective as they could be.

For example:

  • Feeling undeserving will prevent you from experiencing the joy and happiness you are worthy of.
  • Fearfulness keeps you stuck and connected to people and behaviors that create negativity and doubt into your life.
  • You may allow others to make decisions for you based on a faulty belief that your ideas and thoughts will be rejected.

A strong foundation of confidence and self-worth are the building blocks to relationship building with yourself and others.  And if, on occasion, you feel you don’t deserve goodness and happiness, the feeling is short lived when you are resilient and can bounce back to your true self.

Here are some ways you can spark a resilient relationship:

  • Choose to speak up and boldly ask for what you want.
  • Cultivate the belief that you deserve happiness, joy, prosperity and abundance in your life.
  • Let go of negative, energy-draining people and situations.
  • Detach your emotional energy from pessimism and the exhausting demands on your time and power.
  • Be open to attract more positive interactions and circumstances in your life.
  • Replace faulty beliefs about how you are perceived with confidence building affirmations.
  • Acknowledge and appreciate your accomplishments without waiting for validation, approval and acceptance from others.
  • Establish strong limits around what is acceptable, what you are willing to do and how much you can comfortably give.

And, if you are ready to build a resilient relationships in your life  you may want to start with your FREE download of 7 Daily Self Care Tips to Renew Your Mind, Body and Spirit.

 

3 Tips to Set Strong Boundaries

Your boundary is the invisible shield you put up to protect the many demands placed on your time, energy, and resources.

Visualize your boundary as a shield that protects you from energy drainers, time takers and resource stealers. Protect your boundaries by learning to say NO.

Begin setting strong boundaries by using these 3 tips:

Practice – Practice saying NO.  You always have the power to say NO to any request just as others have the power to say NO to your requests. When you say NO to a request for money, time, gifts or commitments, you are in essence asserting your power and authenticity.  You get to set your own boundaries. You take charge of your time, energy and resources. If you are in the habit of saying YES when you would rather say NO, it may not be easy for you to begin saying NO. But by practicing saying NO you’ll find that you’re relieved from over-commitment, guilt, and frustration and free up time for you to engage in the activities that are meaningful to you. Saying no to things you would rather not do is like giving yourself a high five!

Prioritize – Take charge of your time – when you are asked to run the PTA bake sale and you are already organizing the class reunion, tutoring, and going to school at night, saying NO to those things that will tax your energy, time and resources will give you the freedom to make choices based on what’s most important to you. You might say something like, “Thanks for thinking of me but I have another commitment” or “I won’t be able to do “that” this time.

Taking control of how you spend your time is essential to setting strong boundaries.

Patience – Old habits die hard, especially when you have been mired in the same old pattern for years. Be gentle with yourself and allow for setbacks but keep in mind you’re in charge. Change will be difficult for the people around you too. They want you to keep doing, giving and saying yes.  This is how they get their needs met. Look at the changes you are making as if it were a dance: Women are used to following in a dance, right.  Just picture yourself as the leader; you’re leading the way to healthy boundary making.  So when you change your step in the dance, the other person must change theirs – either they follow your lead or they don’t, but you’re still in charge. So, why not take the lead and show others the way?

And, to get more tips and life enrichment, tools and resources to renovate your relationships with partners, family members, co-workers and friends, I invite you to get my latest book, Master the Genie Within

Until Next time

Gladys Anderson helps individuals and couples to renovate their relationships with partners, family members, friends and co-workers

5 Essential Boundary Making Tips

How are you allowing others to set limits on your time and resources? Are you still taking on more and more tasks when your plate is already running over?

To keep from rocking the boat, what things are you doing that you would rather not?  Taking your precious time to run an errand for someone just because they asked is not a way to show you have strong boundaries around YOUR time.

How jam packed is your schedule with the many things you “have to” do for your friends and family that don’t leave  time for YOU?  There are very few things you “have” to do.  Replace “I have to” with “I choose to”…You always have the choice to determine how you spend your time, energy and resources.

What stories do you tell yourself supporting the hamster wheel life (running and running but getting nowhere fast)? Is your story one of  scarcity, limits and procrastination?

If you are like most women, you can identify with at least some of the above statements.  Most of us are adept at giving and doing for others but fall short when it comes to ourselves.

Use the following tips to start doing the things you love, setting healthy boundaries and creating the balance to enjoy your life:

  • Relinquish the notion that you can do all, be all to everyone in your life.  You are not superwoman.  When you don’t set your own boundaries, you open the floodgates to more stress, anxiety and frustration by letting others set limits on your time and resources.  Instead of keeping the peace, you’re really teaching other people that they have the power to determine how, when and what you spend your time doing.
  • Revise the expectations you place on yourself – Look at where the expectations come from.  Are they cultural, family defined or self imposed?  For example, maybe you grew up believing that it’s better to give than receive and consequently, you give, give and give yet have difficulty receiving (i.e., compliments, gifts).  Don’t let someone else’s expectations become your reality.
  • Be spontaneous – You don’t have to know every detail before taking action.  When you spend precious time trying to figure out every possible outcome to the decisions you make, you are actually agonizing over things you have no control of. Sometimes, you just have to make a decision and just go with it.  If it turns out you could have made a better choice, revise or change your approach.
  • If you are trying to find ways to avoid some people in your life or you are constantly complaining about them, then it may be time to revisit the virtues of that relationship. Sometimes people are in your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.  Re-evaluate your relationships with these people and set some firm boundaries about how and when you want them to participate in your life.
  • Get off the back burner – Putting your needs and desires on the back burner while everyone else gets front and center, sends the message that your needs are not as important. Making yourself a priority lets other people know you value yourself, your time and your resources.

 

 

Gladys Anderson – Life Coach, Therapist, Author

About the Author:

Gladys Anderson is a certified life coach, licensed marriage and family therapist, author, consultant and workshop facilitator.

She helps individuals and couples to receive and revive the love, passion, respect and fun that’s been missing from their relationships