No matter what the age – praising good behaviour is always better

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No matter what the age – praising good behaviour is always better than punishing bad.

Even a small baby can manipulate – they have to – it is their survival mechanism – all they can do is cry for attention.  If they feel insecure, for example if dad has been away for a period, then they may cry any time mum tries to leave the room.  It is very hard to always take them with you, or always answer their call immediately, but they do get used to things gradually.  Just try to be very reassuring when you do go to them.  Be warm and cuddly with them, sing to them, and talk to them to explain – even when they can’t understand your words, then can understand your reassuring tone.

Exactly the same applies to old people or sick people dependent on your support – they feel helpless, as well as unwell, so they are bound to be cranky if they don’t get their share of attention.  Give them a bell or something so that they can be sure you can hear them when they really do need you, and spend time with them whenever you can, just reading with them, chatting, playing games etc, so that they do feel you are there for them and don’t feel them to be too much of a burden.  Try to show your love, talk about all the good times.

Also when working with disabled and / or mental health patients, they feel helpless, frustrated, and sidelined, so try to spend quality time with them – again reading, chatting, playing games, and singing.  You might even really do a star chart for them if they can manage to shower for example without scratching or hitting, and reward them with more attention when they are doing well, although you still have to encourage and reassure them when they are struggling of course.  Singing and counting can really help them achieve tasks too.

Similar things apply to your older children, especially when they are developing their own identity more….. praise them for courage in trying new things, even if the experience is not so good, they learn from it.  Give them some slack, a bit of freedom, to explore their lives, relationships, and options.

So with your partners too, they will respond better when you show your appreciation for the good little things, the lovely things, the thoughtfulness and nice gestures – than if you only complain about the bad things.  When you have a young family, it is hard to find time for each other, but even a few moments of tenderness here and there help.  You don’t have to spend huge amounts of money and time trying to keep things alive, sometimes the little things count even more.

Remember to notice yourself, when you do good things.  Don’t get all full of ego, but do acknowledge that you have managed something well.  It helps your self esteem, and also your learning, as you will realise where skills are developing, but also where you could learn even more.  Perhaps you will even uncover a hidden talent and start a new hobby or business.

Trying to control anybody else through punishment, manipulative behaviour, anger etc, just never works out well.  If you give freedom and trust, and praise the positive, this leads to much more joy.  Never forget to show by example – so express your own joy, sense of fun, and your love.  Share your interests and feelings, and listen to others when they wish to do the same.  Don’t be afraid to be yourself, for it is when you are truly being yourself that the right people are attracted to you, and the ones you already have around you stand with you.

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Discussion Times for Couples or Others

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Discussion Times for Couples or Others needing to make an effort to get along

  • Make short pre-arranged times to come together to discuss a few things so that people can prepare for this instead of having things sprung on them.  Obviously ensure this is a good time for all, so that it doesn’t clash with favourite programmes or things that need doing.
  • Prioritise just a few of the most important things needing discussion so that no one feels overloaded.  You could make a few headings for things to come under (much like an agenda), such as Finance, House Management, Relationships.
  • Make it a rule that everyone gets a fair turn, and others listen properly, but no one is allowed to waffle on too long, they must learn to be concise.
  • Also, if anyone becomes too emotionally worked up, it is better to call a short break, walk about, stretch, get drinks etc, before continuing.
  • The main thing about this as that everyone learns to trust each other to try to make this a constructive thing to do, that isn’t stressful, so keeping it short and fair is very important.
  • Bear in mind that not everything has an answer, so don’t expect too much from your partner – sometimes it is okay to accept that there may not be an obvious solution to an issue, although that should not be used as an excuse to not give things due consideration.
  • Also remember, that while you can ask others to consider your needs, you cannot necessarily expect them to fulfil them.  Obviously everyone can try to take things into consideration to a point, but relationships are not there for fulfilling each other’s needs, they are for working together as a team, and loving with freedom to let each other be who they are in themselves, and each person should aim to be self empowered rather than too dependent on each other.
  • Look for small steps rather than expecting everything to happen at once – for example, to arrange to pay small amounts on each bill until there is more income (or prioritise the most important bills), or go to the park if you can’t afford to go out for dinner to spend time together.  Don’t assume your partner will only accept big solutions, don’t be afraid to suggest compromises.
  • Try not to criticise each other – show what you do like by giving compliments and showing appreciation etc, for example “I loved the way you texted me out of the blue today, it made me feel so cared for”, or “Thank you for listening so carefully to my feelings”, and you could always ask them if there is anything they would like to share in return.
  • Always try to leave room for each person to express themselves without interruption, as long as they don’t overdo it.  If things get too much, then ask for a break, or suggest that they speak about it again when they have better collected their thoughts so that they can be more concise and clear, or so that the emotional levels are cooled a little.  Don’t continue if you are becoming distraught, but do promise to speak / listen again when things are more calm, and things can be expressed better.  Writing things down can help take the emotional heat out of it, and also help you clarify which bits are important, so that you can prioritise a few points and present them as clearly and concisely as possible.  This is also a good thing to do if your mind is going over something at night to prevent you from sleeping, or anytime you are upset.  (Sometimes a first draft of what we write would be long and emotional, but a second draft would be much shorter and make more logical sense, so you would never show the first draft to anyone else as it would only confuse things.)
  • Try to leave room after your meeting to relax before going to bed.  It is always better to go to sleep on good terms, rather than stew all night.  It is much harder to regain a warm outlook towards each other if you have left it until the next morning.  So reassure each other after your meeting, that you are done with the discussion for now, and anything else can be set aside until next time, etc.  Maybe there is something you could add to help, like some relaxing music, or even meditation?  Or rubbing each others backs in a warm bath?
  • However, don’t always carry things over to next time, do try to conclude some things at each meeting, otherwise the meetings will become a drag.  Okay, so if you did not find a solution for something at one meeting, and people have agreed to think about it until the next one, then it is okay to have it on the agenda again, to see if any bright ideas or different perspectives have emerged, but don’t dwell on something too much.  Of course some things that need doing in stages or steps will have to come up again, for example revising payment plans, or if you have paid off one bill, then you would want to agree how to redirect the funds no longer needed for that one, etc, but these are generally the more practical things.
  • Even though you leave space to settle down after a meeting before bed, it may not be the best night for sex, but remember that a cuddle does not have to mean sex.  Closeness should be shown in many other ways.  It is better to have warmth and friendship between you than to feel pressure to perform, then when you do want to try sex, it will come more naturally.
  • Massage is a wonderful way to show your caring side and to treat each other (make sure it goes both ways, unless one prefers an alternative reciprocation, but it doesn’t have to necessarily be the same time, so one could be treated one night and the other the next, for example).  It does not have to be a huge thing, just a few caresses or strokes is better than nothing.  A few strokes, or even just a warm hand resting on you, can release a lot of tension from the body.  Don’t forget the head and face, these are areas people don’t often get touched outside of intimate relationships.
  • Respect is vitally important.  Respect for yourself as well as for each other.  So each person is making an effort in the relationship (or team), and in their own lives, and feels they have a right to speak and to be heard – so you do listen to each other as long as they do not treat you disrespectfully.  If anyone has trouble with self esteem, they should perhaps consider getting some help with this.  Our pasts can have a huge influence on our behaviour, especially if we have been treated badly, and we may need help to move beyond certain patterns and to feel more empowered (in a balanced way, that does not try to control others).
  • Meditations and visualisations can be wonderful tools to use individually and as a couple.  They can enhance your sense of deeper self, and all your relationships (family, friends, work, etc.)  I have several of these available on you tube, including an anger management one, and I will be continuing to add more.
  • There are some simple things you can do here – before your meeting you could sit facing each other for a moment, maybe holding hands, and close your eyes.  Breathe deeply and call up your love to help you be calm and gentle at your meeting, so that it can be a successful / positive experience for all.  You could even say something out loud, such as “I promise to try to be calm and loving”, or “I promise to honour and respect you and listen to your points of view, and I ask you to do the same for me.”  Call on each other’s highest (deep) selves to be present.  You could also do a similar thing at the end of the meeting, for example, holding hands in a circle, and saying “Thank you” and sharing your love in the same way, silently for a moment, blessing your relationship.
  • Children can be included in family discussion times from quite an early age, so that they feel empowered to have a say, learn about responsibilities, and share feelings.

Blessing to all, Julia Woodman

www.radiance-solutions.co.uk

Any suggestions to add?  Please feel free to comment.

A Holistic Approach to Wellbeing

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I take a holistic approach to Life and Wellbeing. Everything
is interlinked – our minds, our bodies, and our spiritual
selves. I’ve helped people of all ages, from a wide variety
of backgrounds, each with different experiences and
perspectives, and each reflecting what life is like for them.

Our beliefs, attitudes, and emotions all affect our physical
health. We can easily learn to slightly change the way we
look at things, and do things, in order to increase our sense
of wellbeing.  Becoming more aware of our options gives us
huge power to then choose how we want to live.

Of course I focus on the areas people want to focus on, but it’s important to consider the
broader picture, otherwise we are in danger of just patching symptoms.  We need to look
at lifestyle, work-­life balance – how we treat ourselves and each other, whether or not we
are happy in our relationships and in what we are doing.  All these add up to present a
picture of where we are at the present moment; and it is only by looking at the whole
spectrum that we can really get to the root of things.

This is why I’ve done a range of training – from healing, to counselling and stress relief,
to life coaching, and more.  I aim to help each person find their way back to balance –
empower them to find what works for them personally, and give them the confidence and
the tools to enable them to progress as they wish.

Stress is a prime example of how distress about a situation can manifest itself in a very
physical way.  We can soon see if changing the situation is a possibility, or if we can
make small changes in our approach, to help us deal with it better.  Even if we choose to
stick with something challenging, we feel much more empowered, because we’ve looked
at the how’s and the why’s, then made that choice in a very aware way.  We no longer
feel at the mercy of the situation ­ and our reactive emotional responses to it. With this
clarity, things can be turned right around to become a success story.

We are all, in our way, trying to make sense of life.  We can easily become caught up in a
chain of events and reactions, yet if we become aware enough to understand ourselves,
then we can take a very different, and more objective, approach to life – appreciating the
beauty and variety in it – the amazing way things work – taking our chances to be the
unique individuals we are, choosing what we wish to experience.

As a Life Coach, I can help you decide what you want to do and plan how to achieve
your goals in a very practical way.  My pdf “1 step, 2 step, 3 …. Life Coaching to
help you Achieve” explains in more detail how my life coaching service works, and I
have Life Coaching Tools also available here – which give you the guidance
and the forms to use if you’d like to do this for yourself, but I can help motivate
and support you.

As a Counsellor and Stress Consultant, I can help you deal with any issues.  Emotional
baggage can set you back, but I can help you let it go.  We sometimes get in our own
way, allowing fears to sabotage our attempts to progress, but I can help you move on, and
feel comfortable with yourself, and others.  Effective communication is vital, whether it
be at work, or with family, children, or friends.  I can also help with relationships and any
changes or situations at home or at work, or with your studies.

I have written articles that cover many aspects of living holistically – about self
empowerment and self confidence, creativity, communication, parenting, and about
stimulating young children, and helping teenagers grow and develop into adults.  Also
articles about dealing with depression, addiction, and stress, about sexuality and
relationships, and about our spiritual balance, and our place and purpose here on earth.
All of it is part of our life experience – of our being whole.

I also have guides such as “Confirming your Joy”, “Stress Busting”,  and my Meditation
one.  All are available here,

Meditation is a wonderful tool that we can integrate into our lives to give us inner
strength.  We all have a connection to that still ground of being that we originate from ­
which gives us consciousness and life, and a fundamental sense of peace … which is also
reflected in a sunset, the surface of a lake, or the view from a mountain top. If we have
forgotten our link to this, and thus our interconnection with everyone and everything,
then we can feel very lost. Awakening to it once more is the most wonderfully joyous
feeling, like coming home into open arms, where you feel supported, and safe.

In my Blog about Loving our Bodies and our Lives, I discuss how we can love the
physical side of life, then say: “It’s more than just the physical that we can love.  I
advocate total mind, ­body, ­spirit balance if you want to really make the best of life,
and give yourself every reason to love yourself, and your interaction with the world
around you.”

We need to find ways to stimulate our minds, and have fun at the same time.  We also
need to make life satisfying and meaningful.  And we need to be creative with our lives,
as well as developing practical skills, and using our minds as tools. We should take time
to notice and enjoy details – about nature, and the world around us – about ourselves, and
how our minds and bodies work ­ and we can learn new things, all of which enhance how
we live.

So, I encourage you to think holistically rather than putting too much emphasis on one
area ­ try to optimise your overall life experience.  Loving it all means that you cannot
help loving yourself because you are part of it.

Having spent my life doing many different things – always learning what I wanted to
know ­ I would now love to be able to share that with you ­ through my books, articles,
blogs, and downloads, and by working directly with those of you who contact me via
phone or email. Of course, I will continue to learn more as I go … the journey always
continues.

Julia Woodman – Life Coach, Counsellor, Stress Consultant, and Writer
Advice & Support available via phone, post, or email.
http://www.radiance-solutions.co.uk

xx