Tag Archives: personal life

Guilt be Gone: How to Rid Yourself of Prolonged Guilt in 6 Easy Steps

Did you ever wonder if it is possible to live a guilt free life?

Perhaps you have wondered if it is even moral to give up the guilt. After all, guilt has become so embedded in our Judeo-Christian culture that we almost take guilt for granted as an essential indicator of a “good person.”

So at the risk of sounding like a heretic, I wanted to take guilt on this week and wonder what it would be like to live without it. To wonder whether it is still possible to live a moral and ethical life without the burden of guilt. Feel free, of course to share your thoughts at the end of this article.

So let’s begin with understanding what guilt is.

One accepted definition is:

A bad feeling caused by knowing or thinking that you have done something bad or wrong (i.e. compromised one’s own standard of conduct or violated a moral standard).

Guilt

On its face, a brief experience with a guilty feeling may actually be really helpful. Based upon the definition above, the bad feeling that arises can actually serve as a red flag of sorts to let us know that there is a reason to pause and pay attention. Perhaps we inadvertently acted in a way that hurt someone or acted upon a lapse in judgment that violated one of those moral codes. We are human, so things happen and the bad feeling that arises is like an internal mechanism that helps us to return to a state of awareness about what has happened.

The problems with guilt come in when we linger in it for hours, days, weeks, months, and dare I say even years! 

PROBLEM #1:  The first problem with prolonged guilt is that it activates our internal stress response and from a state of feeling perpetually stressed, we become compromised physically and mentally. In short, it is a waste of energy – energy that drains away from a host of other more productive and enjoyable endeavors in order to maintain this state of feeling badly.

PROBLEM #2:  The second problem I have with guilt is that sometimes we expend all this energy feeling guilty for something that did not really happen or did not actually have the negative consequences we believed it to have. Notice the definition includes things we ‘think’ we did wrong. The truth is that many times, we are wrong!  How many of us have spent days feeling guilty about doing something that we thought hurt someone only to find out later that they were never really bothered by it! Guilt without cause is certainly a waste of energy.  It is much more productive to check things out rather than to mire in guilty feelings.

PROBLEM #3:  The third problem I have with guilt is that we usually assume that if our actions or words hurt someone or caused discomfort that we are supposed to feel guilty. After all, it is wrong to hurt another person, right?  The truth is that sometimes the hurt and discomfort are essential parts of the growing process.  In fact, it is not only normal but essential to pass through periods of discomfort in order to make a change or grow in a new way. This kind of hurt does not require guilt at all because allowing someone to experience discomfort may be the most loving action you can take.

PROBLEM #4:  The fourth and biggest problem I have with prolonged guilt is the fact that it serves as a cop-out from taking productive, restorative action. It is much easier to ‘feel guilty’ about something and believe that you deserve some absolution because you are accepting the personal beating of the guilty feeling than to step up and take action to make amends or set things right if it is possible.  It is a very short road from guilt to shame and once we feel the shame, we can be stuck for a long time and then never really take action to right the situation.

So here are some easy to follow steps to rid yourself of guilt once and for all.

STEP 1:  As soon as you feel that pang of a guilty feeling, welcome it and thank the feeling for alerting you to something important that requires your attention.

STEP 2:  Be gentle with yourself and remind yourself that to err is human and that if you did make a mistake or hurt someone, this simply makes you human. (It does not make you a horrible person!)

STEP 3:  Have the courage to check out whether you actually did something wrong or hurt someone the way you believe you did. No sense in wallowing in a guilty feeling for something that may never have happened or that was not received as badly as you imagine.

STEP 4:  Apologize or do what you can to make amends. That’s all you can do and it IS enough. No matter what you did, prolonged guilt will not change it, but stepping up to sincerely apologize or make amends can radically alter things.

STEP 5:  Pause and see what lesson you can take from this experience. The truth is that any time spent feeling guilty is a total waste of time if you do not spend some of it reflecting on what you learned or what you want to do differently the next time.

STEP 6:  Let it go. Do not make your release of guilt contingent upon someone else’s acceptance of your apology. Some people accept apologies easily and others do not, and this is something you cannot change. Apologize, make amends, learn the important lesson, and let it go because much more will be lost if you resign yourself to living in a state of guilt.

So, no matter how big or how small the feeling of guilt or the source of the guilt may seem, there is no benefit to holding onto it for a prolonged period of time. Let the feeling help make you aware of what has happened, and then follow the steps above and let it go.


Adina T. Laver, MBA, M.Ed., CPC, is a Consciousness Coach who specializes in helping people develop consciousness mastery so they can achieve the goals and life they want. Adina is the founder of two companies, Divorce Essentials which specializes in working with individuals and couples who are considering or navigating divorce to have a healthy experience and Courage to be Curious, a company dedicated to cultivating consciousness mastery for those who are committed to the path of self-awareness in all matters of life, love and leadership.  

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Talking to your partner about divorce

Talking to Your Partner About Divorce – 5 Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make

Initiating a conversation with your partner about divorce is one of the most important conversations you will ever have. Not only is this typically an emotionally charged time, but the way in which you navigate this conversation often sets the tone for the rest of the divorce process. Given the significance of this moment, here are 5 mistakes you don’t want to make when talking to your partner about divorce:


Talking to your partner about divorceDon’t spring the news on your partner in the middle of a heated argument.
While it makes sense that one person may reach the breaking point during an argument, holding your tongue and waiting until things have cooled down to raise the topic of divorce can help prevent a snowball effect of anger and emotionally driven reactive behaviors.

Don’t hope or expect that your partner will make the process easy. Many people hold off having the conversation about divorce much too long because they are waiting for their reluctant partner to come around and see how parting will really be better for both of them. The truth is that if one person does not what the relationship to end (for whatever reason), they are not going to give permission or make things easy. Stepping forward with a clear, concise and definitive message is the most compassionate way to share the news.

Do not try to be the one to comfort your partner when you talk about divorce. No one likes to hurt someone else’s feelings, but if you have just shared with your partner that you want a divorce, you cannot be the one to then try and comfort them. Leaning in to try and help your partner feel better is very confusing and this is a role best served by a friend, family member, coach or counselor.

Don’t plan to share the news in a public space. While it may feel easier for you to share the news in a public place where your partner is likely to not express their genuine response, this can make for a very uncomfortable situation all around. Your partner needs a safe space to have their reaction and placing them in a public situation can be humiliating and unnecessarily challenging. (Note: this applies as long as you are not at a threat for physical abuse.)

Do not tell friends and family members before you tell your spouse.  Receiving the news that your spouse wants a divorce is difficult enough, you do not want to run the risk that they may hear it from someone else before they hear it from you. A spouse who feels like they are ‘the last to know’ is much more likely to become contentious and adversarial in the divorce process.

The way in which you conduct yourself while talking to your partner about divorce will communicate a lot about who you are and will have a significant impact on how each of the next steps will unfold.

For additional support in planning this conversation, please check out the Divorce Companion: A Step by Step Guide to Your Healthy  Divorce.

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Adina Laver is the founder of Divorce Essentials™ and author of the Divorce Companion™ a multi-media step-by-step guide to navigating divorce.  The Divorce Companion™ is the only resource of its kind that provides guidance and decision making tools for every aspect of the divorce process, including determining whether divorce is the next step.

Adina also provides limited one-on-one coaching support for those who recognize that divorce is a sign that life has gotten off track and are aching to finding happiness again – or perhaps for the first time ever.

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Show up for the Journey

How to Show Up for the Journey

One of the gravest deceptions of the mind is that there is a ‘there’ there in which the to do list is complete, there are no conflicts to be resolved, nothing to be repaired, and we have the solution to every challenging affecting our lives. In fact, we can work so hard toward this unattainable goal that we lose sight of the most profound reality of life… That meaning, love and happiness exist in choosing to be present to the journey, not in reaching the destination.

 

This week I am reminded that happiness is not a destination but a daily pursuit. It is our practices as well as our willingness to live consciously and be present to the unfolding of each day’s events with curiosity, openness and awe that enable us to live an extraordinary life.

 

So my offering to you this week is to choose one of the quotes below and allow it to inspire you to be become more conscious about and present to your life. Take the quote and post it someplace prominent, write about it in your journal, discuss it with a friend or family member, and hold it close to your heart when you wake up on the morning and go to sleep at night… and then see what happens.

 

If you are inspired, please share your reflections below or send me an e-mail.

 

Show up for the JourneyQuotes on ‘Showing Up For the Journey’

 

The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, and forgetting that you are special too.

~Ernest Hemmingway

 

 

Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it.

~Charles Swindoll

 

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.

~Robert Frost

 

The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity.

~Amelia Earhart

 

The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.

~Alice Walker

 

The mind is everything. What you think you become.

~Buddha

 

I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.

~Stephen Covey

 

You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore. ~Christopher Columbus

 

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.

~Anais Nin

 

Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.

~George Addair

 

When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.

~Helen Keller

 

When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

~Lao Tzu

 

Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.

~Joshua J. Marine

 

Change your thoughts and you change your world.

~Norman Vincent Peale

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Adina Laver is the author of the Divorce Companion™ and founder of Divorce Essentials™, a specialized divorce coaching and support service for those who are considering, in the midst of, or post-divorce and are committed to a healthy path for reclaiming their lives.

 

If you are contemplating a divorce but are stuck or if you are in the throes of making key decisions for your future but need guidance, reach out to Adina. Whether you coach together for one Ala Carte Session or coach for a full Personal Empowerment Breakthrough, Adina is ready to help you navigate through uncertainty so you can create a happier and healthier future!

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Mind Full of Mines

A Mind Full of Mines

Two nights ago I gave a presentation to a group of attorneys and judges on Understanding the Divorcing Mind. Yes, I finally took my neuroscience fascination for a public speaking spin!

 

One of the images I had on my PPT presentation was of a man walking blindfolded through a minefield. This, I shared with the audience, is what it is often like for both attorney and client during the consult and throughout the divorce process. Two people walking blindfolded through a mind full of mines, fearing and experiencing explosion after explosion with no idea how quickly they will land on safe ground.

 

Well, you don’t have to be going through a divorce to experience the sudden detonation of a Mind Full of Minesland mine in the mind. Last night, after an otherwise lovely day, a simple e-mail detonated one of mine and I was overcome with a sadness and sense of vulnerability that was very old and painfully familiar. The author of the e-mail would have no idea that this simple communication would impact me the way it did, but the effect lingers with me, even fueling the writing of this article.

 

Each of us (simply because we are human) has a childhood and lifetime of vulnerabilities and fears that stem from our experience of being in this world. For most people, our deepest pains stem from events that happened within the first 8-10 years of our lives when the neural structure of our brain was first being shaped. Seemingly small things like the way someone reacted when we showed emotion or the jokes people made when we struggled with something new, all created an imprint in the brain that shaped how we experience the world. Of course traumas that occurred at older ages also have a powerful impact.

 

The thing is that once this memory and the visceral experience of this memory are embedded in our brain, it can be re-triggered at any time. Last night with this simple e-mail, I was suddenly transported back to a time when I was about 8 years old and felt extremely socially vulnerable. In an instant, I felt like a child again, helpless and rejected.

 

As vulnerable as I feel in sharing this when the experience is still saw raw for me, I bring it forth for a few reasons:

 

  • To encourage self-compassion. Even as I was feeling so badly, my first response was to berate myself for being sucked into the vortex of this old story. I was upset with myself for still feeling so weak and vulnerable to a story that is so old. As I write this now, I am still feeling vulnerable but I am practicing much greater self-compassion and recognizing that it is through our shared experience of vulnerability that we are all linked to one another.

 

  • To encourage us to be mindful in how we care for each other. With an average of 15,000 verbal communications every day and a much larger number of non-verbal communications every day, it is almost daunting to imagine the impact that we can have on others each and every day. EVERY interaction we have with another person has the potential to build their strength or trigger their vulnerability, make them feel valued or make them feel dejected. What is the impact of smiling or not smiling when someone enters the room? What is the impact of sending the quick e-mail reply versus taking the time to be engaged with the communication in a full way? What is the impact of giving someone our full attention or splitting our attention between them and our phone?

 

  • To encourage us to pursue forgiveness and compassion. We all respond differently when we get triggered and feel vulnerable or afraid. We can get angry and volatile, we can get shy and pull away, we can learn to become invisible or learn to preemptively strike out against others as a means of self-protection. By design, human beings are wired to seek connection. Therefore, whenever someone engages in behavior that seemingly breaks down or interferes with connection, it is always because of things rooted inside. Knowing this can perhaps help us pursue forgiveness and compassion with greater openness.

 

  • To encourage the pursuit of self-awareness. As painful as it is to be aware of my childhood story and re-live it, it is much more painful and disorienting to be impacted by the childhood story without awareness of it. It would seem logical that if we don’t want to face the hard stuff of our past, that we can just close ourselves to it and keep on moving. The problem is that the hard stuff affects us with or without our awareness, and it is much more likely to come out in ways that lead to addiction, the breakdown of relationships, self –destructive patterns, and so on when we try to pretend it isn’t there. It is with the awareness that we can assert a conscious and healthy response.

 

From this month’s featured teacher, Pema Chödrön:

 

“When you wake up in the morning and out of nowhere comes the heartache of alienation and loneliness, could you use that as a golden opportunity? Rather than persecuting yourself or feeling like something terribly wrong is happening, right there in the moment of sadness and longing, could you relax and touch the limitless space of the human heart? The next time you get the chance, experiment with this.”  

 

This article is my way of experimenting.

Namaste

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Adina Laver is the author of the Divorce Companion™ and founder of Divorce Essentials™, a specialized divorce coaching and support service for those who are considering, in the midst of, or post-divorce and are committed to a healthy path for reclaiming their lives.

 

If you are contemplating a divorce but are stuck or if you are in the throes of making key decisions for your future but need guidance, reach out to Adina. Whether you coach together for one Ala Carte Session or coach for a full Personal Empowerment Breakthrough, Adina is ready to help you navigate through uncertainty so you can create a happier and healthier future!

 

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Supposed to be Hard

Why Its Supposed To Be Hard

I can be a terribly impatient person at times. I am able to do many things quickly and there are a lot of things that come easily to me. That may sound like a great thing, but what it means is that when something truly is hard, I can get seriously thrown emotionally.

 

In today’s world of instant everything, we are not used to having to struggle and our resilience threshold (as an evolving species) can be very low. Think about it… We can cook a dinner in a box in under 5-minutes in the microwave, we can get same day dry cleaning, we expect 24-hour customer service from our bank and tech support. We simply expect things to happen quickly and for problems to be resolved with relative ease.

 

The result of this is that when something arises that truly demands tenacity, perseverance, courage, and resilience, it can feel excruciatingly difficult. We want to call 24-hour support to solve the problem for us. There must be an easier way out of this mess.

 

What is true, however, is that some things are supposed to be hard.

I invite you to share in one of my favorite stories…

 

 

Supposed to be HardA man found a cocoon of an emperor moth. He took it home so that he could watch the moth come out of the cocoon.

 

On the day a small opening appeared, he sat and watched the moth for several hours as the moth struggled to force the body through that little hole. Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it had gotten as far as it could and it could go no farther. It just seemed to be stuck.

 

Then the man, in his kindness, decided to help the moth, so he took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bit of the cocoon. The moth then emerged easily. But it had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings. The man continued to watch the moth because he expected that, at any moment, the wings would enlarge and expand to be able to support the body, which would contract in time. Neither happened! In fact, the little moth spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never was able to fly.

 

What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand was that the restricting cocoon and the struggle required for the moth to get through the tiny opening was the way of forcing fluid from the body of the moth into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it achieved its freedom from the cocoon. Freedom and flight would only come after the struggle. By depriving the moth of a struggle, he deprived the moth of health.

 

If your divorce or whatever other life struggle you are in feels hard – even excruciatingly hard at times – then it is supposed to be hard. Breaking out of a way of life that you have outgrown is a necessary struggle to prepare you to embrace and navigate what is on the other side.

 

I cannot tell you exactly how long this particular struggling will last. For me, I had many intervals of feeling very disheartened at how far I was from the “extraordinary” on the other side when I thought I should already be there. What I can tell you is this… It is worth it when you get there – and – you will renew the journey again and again if you want to live a fully actualized life.

 

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of those depths.”

~ Elizabeth Kubler Ross – Psychiatrist, often attributed with creating the

Theory of the Five Stages of Grief & Loss

 

For more on why the journey to the life we truly want is supposed to be hard, check out this video clip from one of my favorite movies: A League of Their Own.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndL7y0MIRE4

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Adina Laver is the author of the Divorce Companion™ and founder of Divorce Essentials™, a specialized divorce coaching and support service for those who are considering, in the midst of, or post-divorce and are committed to a healthy path for reclaiming their lives.

 

If you are contemplating a divorce but are stuck or if you are in the throes of making key decisions for your future but need guidance, reach out to Adina. Whether you coach together for one Let’s Get Real Mini Session, or coach for a full Personal Empowerment Breakthrough, Adina is ready to help you navigate through uncertainty so you can create a happier and healthier future!

 

 

 

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Last week, I was held hostage by my brain.Analysis Paralysis

 

I was afraid – as all of us are from time to time – about aspects of my future and success. Does this sound familiar?

 

And my brain, doing what brains do, not only began conjuring up every fear-based story it could muster, but then really paralyzed me with its insistence upon trying to “think” my way out of my hole. I thought and thought about what to do, and the more I thought, the more elaborate and convincing the stories became, and the more afraid I became until — I was stuck in a state of complete analysis paralysis. No matter which direction my brain pursued, the future looked risky and gloomy and I was stuck.

 

Ever been there? Somehow I am sure I am not the only one.

How reliable is the brain?

 

Left unchecked, the brain can take on a life of its own – and the biggest problem with this is that we are absolutely convinced that our brain knows exactly what it is talking about ALL of the time. We are convinced that it is accurate and that it can think its way out of any problem.

 

The funny thing is that we have no problem doubting other people’s brains. We question doctors when it comes to medical decisions, despite their years of training (and our complete lack of training). We question our government officials when they make strategic international decisions, despite the fact that they have teams of analysts and we have only a very rudimentary understanding of the complex issues. And, of course, we question our children’s teachers’ methods of educating our kids, despite their years of formal training and experience and our lack of either. Yes, we have no problem questioning anyone else’s brains, but someone we trust our own implicitly to provide us with an accurate assessment of everything all the time!

 

Some common musings of the brain:

  • No one will want to hire me because I do not have the right degrees.
  • I have to stay in my unhealthy and unhappy marriage because I have no other way to support myself and I will be homeless or destitute if I leave.
  • I am a bad person if I do something that hurts someone else’s feelings or makes them sad, so I have to do what makes other people happy.
  • If my kids are struggling, then I must be an unsuccessful and incapable parent and I need to figure out how to make life better for them.

 

This list could go on and on. Our brains are very creative and quite dramatic in their musings, and they know just how to reel us in to believing them. Once we are there, we analyze our seemingly hopeless situation for days, weeks, months and sometimes years, never taking action because our brain has convinced us that there is absolutely no positive way out of where we are. We are paralyzed; we are stuck.

Give your brain a reality check

 

So, in this rational moment of reading this article, ask yourself these questions:

  • How likely is it really that everyone else’s brains are inaccurate at times but mine is always right?
  • How likely is it that the same way of thinking that created the sense of crisis in my brain will discover a way out of it?

Break through the Analysis Paralysis

 

If you are tired of hanging out in a state of analysis paralysis or despair about your situation, here are four steps to breaking free:

 

  1. Break the silence. Most of the issues that get us stuck evoke feelings of shame. Shame needs silence, secrecy, and judgment to thrive. Take 15 -30 minutes and write down the issue that has you stuck and all your thoughts about it. Share it with someone who can just listen and not give you advice or be judgmental.
  2. Take a ‘thinking’ vacation. Take your journal entry and place it in a jar for a week (screw the lid on tightly!). Tell yourself that you are going to let the jar hold onto the issue for a week so you can take a break from thinking about it. If it arises in your mind, simply give yourself a gentle reminder that this issue is in the jar for a week, no need to worry about it now.
  3. Pursue a new angle. After a week, take your writing out of the jar. Go back to your trusted listener and share the issue again, now asking yourself how you can look at this from another angle.
  4. Get support. If you are still stuck after steps #1-3, get professional support. Your brain is stuck, but this doesn’t mean you have to stay stuck.

 

Put another way,

“If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself, but to your estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment.” ~ Marcus Aureluis, Second Century Roman Emperor and Philosopher

 

So whatever you have been procrastinating doing until you have it ‘all figured out,’ STOP analyzing. If your brain hasn’t gotten you there yet, it is not going to until something changes – either your actions or your thoughts.

 

When you are ready to get unstuck from your analysis paralysis, contact me. I am ready to help you free yourself from your mind.

 

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Adina Laver is the author of the Divorce Companion™ and founder of Divorce Essentials™, a specialized divorce coaching and support service for those who are considering, in the midst of, or post-divorce and are committed to a healthy path for reclaiming their lives.

 

If you are contemplating a divorce but are stuck or if you are in the throes of making key decisions for your future but need guidance, reach out to Adina. Whether you coach together for one Let’s Get Real Mini Session, or coach for a full Personal Empowerment Breakthrough, Adina is ready to help you navigate through uncertainty so you can create a happier and healthier future!

 

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Why a Coach is Not a Luxury

Three and a half years ago I had no idea what a Coach was (other than the one who leads a sports’ team). Today, having a coach in my life is not a luxury, but a necessity. Here’s why…Necessity

The Picture Perfect Life

 

From an outward view, the first 42 years of my life were a great success. I had accumulated four degrees, all with honors, I had a good paying job where I had influence and was making a difference, I was married to a really good person and had two magnificent kids, I lived in a nice suburban home, and had already lived in four countries and traveled a good bit of the world. Like many of my clients, my life looked perfect to the outside world. I had it all.

 

With everything one could hope for in place, what was wrong with me? How come I didn’t feel as happy as I thought I should? What about me was malfunctioning? I looked outwardly to find what was missing.

 

  • I tried exercise my way to happiness. When I would be thin enough and have the body I wanted, I would feel happy.

 

  • I tried pursuing adventure. I moved to other countries and traveled. If my life would be exotic enough, I would be happy.

 

  • I tried changing jobs. I changed jobs about every three years figuring that when I found the right job, then I would be happy.

 

  • I tried to please my way to happiness. If I could be the perfect mother, perfect wife, and highest performing professional, then I would be happy.

 

From as early as I could remember, I was trying to figure out what I had to do to feel fulfilled, happier, more purposeful. I tried A LOT of things! And then…

 

 Another Attempt to ‘Find’ My Happiness

 

In 2011, I signed up for a coach training program as ‘another new thing to try.’ This was yet another attempt to shape my career so I could be….yes…happier.

 

What I soon discovered about my coach training program with iPEC is that coaching is not simply a set of tools that you learn to use; it is one of the most powerful experiences available to transform any facet of life. I was a willing student and I put the areas of my life that were causing me struggle ‘on the alter’ so to speak. Fearful and skeptical, I didn’t think a lot would happen. I wanted quick results, immediate fixes. I was frequently met with a repeating refrain, “Trust the process.” I had paid my money, so I continued.

 

Slowly at first and then very quickly, big things began to happen. Something shifted inside and I was starting to view my world through new lenses, ask new questions, and face fears in a new way. And when I began to show up differently, things around me began to shift too. I was amazed. With all the other personal and professional development that I had ever done, nothing had ever had as transformative an impact on who I am and my happiness in the world as learning to coach and being coach by masters.

 

But I Can’t Afford a Coach!

 

When I came out of my coaching program, some people got a coach right away. They seemed to get it that a coach is not a luxury. Hmmm… I can be a pretty stubborn person and I didn’t feel I had the money. “I have all these skills now. I will just coach myself,” I told myself.

 

And so began another two year period of struggling and not getting very far in setting up a coaching practice. Talented, skilled, trained….it was humbling to discover that “I too am human.” I, like everyone else, am endowed with my own personal barriers that I cannot get past, my own limited beliefs, and my deep seeded gremlins that GET ME STUCK.

 

Realization…. A Coach is Not a A Luxury

 

With virtually no money, I found a way to invest in my first coach. I then borrowed money to invest in my second coach, and in an amazingly short period of time I found myself soaring in the direction I wanted to go. I now know that as long as I want to live my life fully and be at my best, I need my teachers and guides. I know that a coach is not a luxury for someone like me who demands the fullness of life.

 

And this is why I coach. It is a way to pay this gift forward. And those who know me as a Divorce & Relationship Coach know that the core of my work is not about the divorce. Navigating the legal and financial pieces are not usually as complex as people imagine them to be. However, I have never met anyone who was faced with divorce or considered divorce who was not really asking questions about where they are in their life, who they want to be, and what happened to their happiness.

 

Becoming the Divorce Companion

 

Not to be confused with my program of the same name, a colleague of mine recently coined me The Divorce Companion, a guide for the journey through one of the most significant transitions that anyone will experience in their lifetime. The opportunity that arises in this moment of personal struggle is the potential to find your way out of a life that you are tolerating to one that you love – whether you actually end up getting a divorce or not!

 

“Adina’s coaching has provided me with the objective, nonjudgmental guidance and feedback, that neither I nor anyone else could provide. She pushed me for meaning and clarity that has enabled me to feel confident that I am taking the right steps to live a happy and authentic life.”   ~Current client

 

So if you have been sitting on the fence, worrying about the money, and filling your days with excuses, you are probably asking the wrong question. Rather than asking if you can afford coaching, I invite you to ask, “How committed am I to living a meaningful, fulfilled and happy life?”

 

“Indeed, coaching is not a luxury–but a necessity to those genuinely ready to go to the next level–to those who have had enough–to those who wish to live aligned with their Truth–to those wishing to say:  I decided to claim a life for myself.”  ~Current client

 

Whether you are pre-, post- or mid divorce, I am ready to journey with you. When you are ready to take the next step, e-mail me or give me a call 610-324-5608. 

 

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Adina Laver is the author of the Divorce Companion™ and founder of Divorce Essentials™, a specialized divorce coaching and support service for those who are considering, in the midst of, or post-divorce and are committed to a healthy path for reclaiming their lives.

 

If you are contemplating a divorce but are stuck or if you are in the throes of making key decisions for your future but need guidance, reach out to Adina. Whether you coach together for one Let’s Get Real Mini Session, or coach for a full Personal Empowerment Breakthrough, Adina is ready to help you navigate through uncertainty so you can create a happier and healthier future!

 

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Splitting up or Conscious Uncoupling?

What makes Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin’s break up different from the average conscious uncouplingHollywood divorce story is their reframing of the experience as conscious uncoupling. The media is hot on this one. Is this complete Hollywood hogwash or is there something here that can transform the way we navigate this life transition that impacts 50% of couples in the United States?

 

The term conscious uncoupling was coined by Los Angeles therapist and author Katherine Woodward Thomas who is committed to helping couples release the trauma of a breakup so they can reclaim their power and reinvent their lives. (Have you heard this before? I am feeling in good company here!)

 

For a long time, divorce has carried with it a deep mark of shame. Regardless of the story behind the marriage and the break-up, stating that you were getting a divorce was akin to having a scarlet letter affixed to your cloak for the world to see and judge. To those on the outside, divorce means failure and provokes many married couples to pull away from long time friends for what must only be a fear of “catching” the divorce disease.

 

The fact is, there are many reasons why couples end a marriage. There is a significant rise in the grey divorce because we are simply living longer. As Thomas points out, the assumption of a single lifetime partner stems from a time when lifespan was much shorter – not a time when individuals can spend up to 70 years of their lives in intimate relationships. People grow and change and they do not always grow and change in the same direction. This is normal.

 

In addition, many people are in marital situations that are fraught with abuse, addiction and manipulation. And then, of course, there is the segment of the population like me who discovers that they are gay or feels ready to acknowledge their homosexuality and make a change in their lives. These are all valid reasons to bring a marriage to an end, so doesn’t it behoove us to figure out how to navigate this process without so much acrimony and destruction?

 

How to Achieve Conscious Uncoupling

 

  1. The first essential step, as Gwyneth and Cris have done, is to acknowledge to themselves that this is not a failure, but a conscious choice to make a change and improve the quality of life. When divorce is about failure (F), we want to find someone to blame because neither partner wants to own the “F”. In a conscious uncoupling, no one is wrong.
  2. The second key ingredient is to know what you value more than the right to be angry. For Gwyneth and Cris (and many others) this is their children. Valuing future happiness is also a great focus. When divorce is about the split, it easily becomes contentious. When the focus is on what you want to preserve and what you want to create, it is much easier to consciously uncouple.
  3. A third key ingredient is to know how to return to center. Everyone going through a divorce will get triggered at some point – even Gwyneth and Chris – and I hope we don’t have to read about it in a tabloid. This is human and normal. I experienced a conscious uncoupling with my husband and there were still very tough moments. They key is not to act from the places of anger and hurt and to have strategies for returning to center and refocusing on the bigger goals.
  4. Fourth, it is important to have the right support team in place. Do your friends, family, therapist, attorney, coach, financial planner, and so on help you navigate in a conscious and healthy way or do they fuel the flames of acrimony and mistrust? Conscious uncoupling requires a support system that reinforces this path.
  5. Finally, something that is key to staying on track that I learned from my ex is to take any decision and imagine sharing it with someone you care about and respect. Would you feel proud to share this choice with your children, parents, or that special person in your life (dead or alive) for whom you have deep respect? If this is the gauge, you will make more conscious choices.

What if you are uncoupling from an ‘unconscious’ partner?

 

Doing something consciously is a personal choice. Regardless of the choices your partner makes, anyone can follow the five guidelines set forth above. This is your journey and you are the one who has to live on the other side of it.

 

For support with Consciously Uncoupling – alone or with your partner, I have created the Divorce Companion Program that will be released next week. You will be able to learn more about it at www.divorcecompanion.com.

 

Kudos to Gwyneth and Chris. The journey is challenging and they should be applauded for their commitment to navigating in this healthy way.

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Adina Laver is the author of the soon to be released Divorce Companion™ and founder of Divorce Essentials™, a specialized divorce coaching and support service for those who are considering, in the midst of, or post-divorce and are committed to a healthy path for reclaiming their lives.

 

If you are contemplating a divorce but are stuck or if you are in the throes of making key decisions for your future but need guidance, reach out to Adina. Whether you coach together for one Let’s Get Real Mini Session, or coach for a full Personal Empowerment Breakthrough, Adina is ready to help you navigate through uncertainty so you can create a happier and healthier future!

 

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What’s Hidden in Your Closet?

For a long time, the phrase “coming out of the closet” referred only to those who were revealing a new sexual orientation. In reality, we are all have something hidden in the closet, and this closed door is squashing our authenticity and potential.

 

closetMy talented and valued videographer & audiographer, Helyx Chase (www.midnightmediacoup.com) recently forwarded the following Ted Talk to me – well before she knew how much I love listening to Ted Talks and aspire to give one some day! And when I do give one, it will certainly build on this theme shared by Ash Beckham, “We’re all hiding something. Let’s find the courage to open up.”

 

In this segment, Ash talks about the fact that each of us has part(s) of ourselves that we have likely kept hidden in the closet or silenced for a long time. Sometimes we know exactly what this thing is and sometimes we only recognize it as a nagging feeling that something in our life feels off or should be different.  I am not sure which is more painful, knowing the part of yourself that you are silencing because there is a fear about what will happen if it is revealed, or knowing that something is off but not being able to articulate what it is.

 

Having fallen into the second category myself, I know how frustrating that was, but the worst consequence of either situation is the fact as long as part of us is stuck in the closet, we can never live our full lives, experience true and unbridled happiness, and discover the amazing gifts we have to contribute.

Divorce Can Be a Key to Opening the Closet

As a Divorce & Relationship coach, I receive calls daily from people who are at the crossroads of considering, pursuing, or facing divorce and know deeply that something has not been right for a long time – just as I was. Those who are honest with themselves recognize that ‘what has not been working’ is only in part the fault of a partner or a bum situation. The other part relates to something inside themselves that really needs to change. They suddenly find themselves with their nose up against the door faced with the choice as to whether or not to finally open up the door.

 

WOW! That is scary.

 

There is a reason why we have kept the closet door closed for so long.

 

We have very powerful stories – convincing beyond a doubt – that opening up the door will absolutely unleash disaster.

 

So why should we?

 

A truly inspiring women, Marianne Williamson, offers us this perspective… “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. …We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. …As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

 

What do we really fear? Perhaps the possibility that what has been hidden in the closet is actually the source of our inner light.

 

What if our light is unleashed? Will we know what to do with it?

What if our light is unleashed? Will we like what it illuminates?

What if our light is unleashed? Will we be fully received in the world?

 

We believe there is a great deal to fear in unleashing what is hidden in our closet.  What has motivated me to make some of the biggest changes in my personal and professional life was the fear of never knowing what would happen if my light was free to shine.

 

If you have reached the crossroad of considering, pursuing or facing divorce, and you are tired of expending your energy to keep the closet door shut, contact me. Let’s talk about how facing the fears and unleashing your light can positively impact your divorce experience and change your life – because as Ash Beckham says, “A closet is no place for a person to truly live.”

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Divorce Essentials, founded by Divorce Coach Adina Laver, is a specialized divorce coaching and support service for those who are considering, in the midst of, or post-divorce and are committed to a healthy path for reclaiming their lives.

 

If you are contemplating a divorce but are stuck or if you are in the throes of making key decisions for your future but need guidance, reach out to Adina. Whether you coach together for one Let’s Get Real Mini Session, or coach for a full Personal Empowerment Breakthrough, Adina is ready to help you navigate through uncertainty so you can create a happier and healthier future!

 

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Vow to Shed the Shackles of the Past

For this final day of February, a month that I have dedicated to articles about self-love, I have a beautiful gift to share with you. A fellow traveler on this journey to live an authentic and fulfilled life shared a writing with me. It articulates her commitment to release herself from the shackles of a past that have been keeping her from fully honoring herself and living her authentic life. I was so moved and inspired by what she wrote that I asked her permission to share it with you.

Please join me in honoring Christine commitment to pursue authenticity and wholeness both by reading her writing and by taking some time to draft one of your own. What are you ready to let go of so you can live with a sense of wholeness?

As always, I invite you to e-mail me or post your response on my blog.

Adina

 

I Vow…

Today, in the predawn hours of my 48th year, I vow that I shall no longer fear the sound of my own voice; the depth, texture and contours of my own boundaries; the boundless capacity of my own love…

 

I vow that I shall never again, not for one moment, entertain the notion that I am not good enough, not worthy, not wise or bright enough…that I am not loved enough to have the most extraordinary things happen to me…

 

I vow to shed, once and for all, any and all patterns, beliefs–and any outdated, constraining values that keep me living small…

 

I vow to never again fear the cunning, manipulative ways of those living at the lowest vibratory, survivalist levels–for my strength, my hope and my beautiful future is rooted in my high vibratory state…

 

I vow to never again say yes when I mean no; maybe when I mean never, fine when I mean–absolutely not.

 

The first steps I take today, upon bringing my feet to the floor shall be with the strength & firmness of a growing resolve now turned conviction–a conviction that the path I walk is now mine…I own every footstep, every decision to turn left when most would urge right; I own every detour, every pause for rest, every decision that would have me forge forward when the path feels black with dark, hazy with fog, rocky with debris.

 

I was born into this world 48 years ago, naked body, naked Soul…a wise, fully evolved mind that blazed with the knowingness of why it is I came here and what I needed to do…I arrived with “Anahata”–the purest of un-struck hearts–a vast, open heart…eager and ready to give and receive love in ways that would free others to love more deeply and more completely…

 

Somehow, the years ahead would set me into a long period of forgetting…

 

This morning, in the predawn hours of my 48th birthday, I choose to be open to a full remembrance of who I am…

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Divorce Essentials, founded by Divorce Coach Adina Laver, is a specialized divorce coaching and support service for those who are considering, in the midst of, or post-divorce and are committed to a healthy path for reclaiming their lives.

 

If you are contemplating a divorce but are stuck or if you are in the throes of making key decisions for your future but need guidance, reach out to Adina. Whether you coach together for one Let’s Get Real Mini Session, or coach for a full Personal Empowerment Breakthrough, Adina is ready to help you navigate through uncertainty so you can create a happier and healthier future!

 

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