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You don’t need to have it all figured out (DW#534)

Clarity of intention does NOT mean that you need to know or figure out how your intention will guide you, manifest itself or show up during this year. 

Of course, I do understand that this uncertainty will be more than some of us can bear. (not that any of us are control freaks of course …). But here’s the thing: An intention is not about certainty or having it all planned out. If we try to figure it all out and micromanage how we will live our intention and then how will others react etc, it will lead to a lot of frustration. 

This is simply about making an intention for ourselves about how we are going to show up regardless of what is happening around us. 
So please don’t let your need to certainty stand in the way. Commit to a one-word intention. Yes, just one. 

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What’s your intention? (DW#532)

For some people, setting specific goals can feel too limiting. This can be especially so if you are in a time in your life when you want to be open to new possibilities or if you are going through a period of uncertainty, transition, change and discovery. At times like this, setting goals (at least in some domains of our life) can feel overwhelming or simply not do-able. 

At times like this, instead of setting specific goals, consider setting an intention for how you are going to show up in your life this year. 

You might be asking: What exactly is the difference between goals and intentions?

To put it briefly, while a goal is a desired outcome in the future, an intention is about how we commit to showing up in our life everyday and in every moment, regardless of what is happening around us. 

It is a guiding principle or value that we act from, and it is very much based in the present moment (as opposed to the future)
So while a goal might be to...

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What would your wisest friend tell you in this situation? (DW#515)

Some of us are blessed to have a wise friend or mentor in our lives.

This is a person on whom we can count on to give us a realistic perspective when our mind is doing its distorted loopy thinking. A friend who can set us straight and talk some sense into us for our own good. A friend who is a friend of our relationships because they realize that even if we are angry or upset in the moment, our long term happiness and wellbeing lies in making our close relationships work rather than walking away from them.

This is a friend who is kind and compassionate and yet holds us accountable and encourages us to live up to our best selves and to stop acting like a jerk.

If you were to ask this friend about the situation, what would they say?

How would they interpret this situation?

What advice would they give you on your behavior?

Exactly. Listen to this friend.

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Control Fallacies (DW#500)

Some experts explain the last two distortions by calling them "control fallacies’. 

A control fallacy manifests as one of two beliefs: 
(1) that we have no control over our lives and are helpless victims of fate, or 
(2) that we are in complete control of ourselves and our surroundings, making us responsible for things which we cannot actually control, such as the feelings and actions of others. 

Of course, both beliefs are inaccurate and damaging. While it is dis-empowering to take no responsibility for things within our control, it is equally damaging to to accept responsibility for more than our share, or things which we have no power to change. 

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Why focus on emotions? (DW#450)

emotions feelings opinon Sep 14, 2018

How are you feeling today? If you are feeling good, happy, confident it is likely that you feel ready to take on the world. You feel like nothing can get in your way. You are productive and energetic. 

If on the other hand, you are having a bad day, feeling sad, anxious or upset for any reason, you may be lacking this confidence and energy. 

If you are angry, and you end up losing control, your emotions can get the best of you and cause you to act in ways that you later regret. 

So let’s be honest: how we are feeling on a day to day basis impacts how much we enjoy life and how productive we are. 

But emotions do much more than that. 

Here are some reasons, we need to become smarter about our own emotional state: 

1)   Emotions motivate us to act. The word emotion itself comes from a word which means to move – in other words emotions cause us to take action
2)   Because they motivate us to act, they predict...

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The function of emotions (DW#449)

emotions opinon Sep 13, 2018

Given that sometimes emotions get the better of us, or even make us miserable, have you ever wondered why are we created with emotions? I mean, if we are to suppress and control them (more on that in the coming days), what’s the purpose anyway?

So here are only a few reasons why human beings need emotions:

1)   Emotions help us learn from our memories 
When we go experiences in life, these experiences become part of our memory bank. However, when our brain stores experiences, it does just not collect facts. Our brain is designed to also record the feelings that go with these experiences and these feelings help us to learn from our experiences. 
Let’s take a really simple example: if we touch a hot stove, we will experience intense pain. The thought of touching another hot stove in the future will carry with it the memory of that searing pain. Thus our emotional memories from this experience will keep us from getting hurt again. 

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Have you heard about EQ? (DW#448)

What do you think of when you think of when you think of someone who is intelligent? Are they logical, good at learning, solving problems, taking tests? 

This is the traditional view of intelligence which is defined as the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills, solve problems, and adapt to new situations. Intelligence or IQ can also be defined as the ability that intelligence tests measure.

For the last few decades, however, psychologists and scientists have begun to question this limited understanding of intelligence. 

The most famous challenge, perhaps, was launched in 1996 by Dan Goleman with the publication of his book Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ. Goleman claimed that emotional intelligence or EQ is another aspect of intelligence that is often overlooked but it is what often determines success or failure in our lives. 

Before we go any further, let us understand what we mean by EQ. 

...

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I’d love to get your opinion (DW#442)

There are so many decisions we make on a daily basis: about work, about the household, about our own schedule and about the family. 

While it is not realistic or feasible to seek counsel from our spouses or loved ones on every small decision, there are so many small and not-so-small decisions that impact the whole family. When we can ask our significant others for their input on decisions, it benefits the relationship in many ways: 

1)   It expresses trust in the other: Requesting someone’s thoughts on a matter lets the other person know how important his or her opinions are to you. By singling that person out as your go-to for advice, you’re expressing that you trust his or her judgment. The advice-giver will likely get a confidence boost, feeling like an expert in relationships, career advancement, or whatever else you need help with. 

2)   It is a sign of respect: What we do impacts those who are close to us. If we...

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Do you expect your spouse to read your mind? (DW#384)

People with fixed mindsets expect that that in an ideal relationship, the couple should be able to read each other’s minds and finish each other’s sentences. Since characteristics are fixed according to their view of the world, a lack of communication or a difference of opinion is suggestive of a fatal flaw in the relationship.
 
When Dweck invited people to talk about their relationships, she found that: Those with the fixed mindset felt threatened and hostile after talking about even minor discrepancies in how they and their partner saw their relationship. Even a minor discrepancy threatened their belief that they shared all of each other’s views.
 
For those of us who are in long term relationships we often find that we are still learning about each other even after decades of being together and can see how destructive it can be to expect the other to read our minds.
 
If we develop a growth mindset in our relationships, we have a much...
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Why do people in happy marriages cheat? (DW#368)

Esther Perel is a world-renowned authority on committed relationships and on infidelity in those committed relationships. 

In her ground-breaking new book, The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity, she provides new insight into why people cheat. 

I found this book extremely useful in working with people reeling from the devastation of affairs because of one very important insight.

It is common for the betrayed spouse to lose their confidence, their sense of identity and undergo signs of emotional trauma when they discover that the person whom they trusted most in the world has betrayed them. It is common for these spouses (especially women) to question themselves and what they could have done to prevent the affair from taking place. 

This book explains that affairs have little or nothing to do with the marriage or the betrayed spouse and everything to do with the spouse who has been unfaithful. 

She explains that people have affairs as a form of...

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