Assert Yourself – And Enhance Your Relationships

I recently connected with Dr. Julie Hanks for the “Beyond the Couch” podcast to talk about assertiveness tips. Dr. Hanks is a licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist specializing in women’s emotional health and relationships. She is the founder and director of Wasatch Family Therapy, author of The Burnout Cure and The Assertiveness Guide for Women, a blogger, a local and national media contributor, an online mental health influencer, a life coach and a private practice consultant, and an award-winning performing songwriter. To learn more visit DrJulieHanks.com or connect with @drjuliehanks on social media.

Dr. Hanks and I discussed the ways that our relationships can actually be strengthened with assertiveness so that we can go on to connect in more loving, fulfilled ways with our loved ones. She shared three top tips for asserting ourselves in relationships:

1) Before you can be assertive ask yourself these four questions about the situation:

  • What do I think?
  • What do I feel?
  • What do I want?
  • What do I need?

2) OSCAR Assertiveness Tool

  • O – Observe the Situation
  • S – Sort Thoughts and Feelings
  • C – Compassionately communicate
  • A – Ask Clarifying Questions
  • R – Request Directly

3) When Communicating Choose the “Lantern Stance”

There are three communication stances: doormat (passive), sword (aggressive or passive aggressive), and the lantern.Imagine yourself standing with your feet shoulder width apart, centered and balanced, holding up a lantern as high as you can reach illuminating the situation. Envision yourself standing up straight, feeling strong and not easily swayed. Imagine inviting the person you are interacting with to step into the lantern’s light with you and ask this person to describe his or her experience and perspective.

Dr. Hanks explains that many people fear that asserting their needs will jeopardize their relationships. She goes on to describe how the five steps in asserting ourselves actually serve to improve our relationships with our loved ones.

You can access a free chapter of Dr. Hanks’ Assertiveness Guide for Women at assertivenessguide.com.

You can also listen to our discussion here. Be sure to let me know what you discovered as you tried these tips.

Curious what I can offer you to help build the life you celebrate? Get in touch!

Get access to more valuable content weekly here!

 

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“Beyond the Couch” Explores the Benefits of Group Therapy!

The newest episode of the “Beyond the Couch” podcast is here!

Today, we look at the benefits of group therapy, different formats of group therapy, and how we can gain the most benefit from group therapy. You can listen to the episode here!

Don’t forget: If you missed the first few episodes, they are always available via iTunes, on my website, SoundCloud, Stitcher, and YouTube.

If you’ve found these episodes helpful in some way, please be sure to read a rating and review so that 1.) I know what helps you and 2.) so that others in the same boat can find what they need.

Enjoy these first few episodes before the next one on Thursday – we’ll be focusing on Mindfulness!

LAST CALL: Mindful Mondays Enrollment Closing!

You may be finding yourself feeling a bit overwhelmed and run-down. You might be having a hard time catching your breath and feel rushed from one thing to the next without a moment to slow your racing mind down. There are tools and strategies to help you focus, find your footing again, and even feel the relief in your body and mind.

I have been so excited about bringing back the Mindful Monday 8 session series! We recently had a brief glimpse into Mindfulness with our Mindfulness Matters 5 Day Challenge + 3 Bonus Days where people joined us from seven US states and four countries! In fact, people have shared with me that they are revisiting the challenge yet again on their own! Several people have also requested that I run the challenge again, too!

The exciting news is that we can broaden this practice in our Mindful Monday 8 session series! Our last round of the series brought so much benefit to our community. Here are some of the comments from group members:

“It was a really nice way to get myself into the mindset for a productive and calm week.”

“I learned so much about my body and mind and how my feelings showed up around them from these groups.”

“Sharing this with the others in the group made it a more deep experience for me. I gained a lot from each of the other people!”

This is one of my favorite practices and I am so thrilled about bringing it back to help people who are feeling stressed, unfocused, and overwhelmed get back on track.

Mindfulness offers so many benefits and ways of enhancing our lives – from Mindful eating to improving our mood, focusing, and increasing our productivity to building better relationships, this practice brings with it so many opportunities to deepen the experiences in your life. Learn a bit more in my interview with Rockland World Radio’s “Connections with Deborah Turner.”

I will be closing enrollment for this group on Saturday, April 1st. If you’re ready to get information on how this series can benefit your life, just click below for more access.

Don’t forget to read more about this exciting group at Inner Realm magazine.

“Beyond the Couch” Is LIVE on iTunes!

I am very excited to share that the “Beyond the Couch” podcast is now LIVE on iTunes!

iTunes makes it easy to subscribe so you can get episodes downloaded immediately when they are released. I am including a short video on how to do that, below….

You can still listen on my website, SoundCloud, Stitcher, and YouTube also!

Please feel free to share as you find the episodes helpful as well.

How to subscribe to, rate, and review, a podcast on iTunes. 

Make Your Goals SMART

Last week, we discussed the value of habits in shaping the landscape of our lives. More specifically, we explored the significance of deliberate, mindful habit building to enrich our lives. 

One key element in creating and building habits that work for us is to ensure we have clear goals that will target the changes we want to see in our lives. Bringing deliberate, intentional awareness to defining and outlining our goals can help us structure them in ways that set us up for success.
In other words, we mindfully create goals that are SMART:


SPECIFIC (simple, sensible, significant)
MEASURABLE (meaningful, motivating)
ATTAINABLE (agreed, attainable)
RELEVANT (reasonable, realistic, and resourced)
TIME-BOUND (time-based, time limited, timely, time-sensitive)


Setting SMART goals means you can clarify your ideas, focus your efforts, use your time and resources productively, and increase your chances of achieving what you want in life. We could consider that goals are part of every aspect of life: how we conduct our relationships, what ou want to achieve at work, the way we use our spare time… Everything comes down to priorities, and what we would like to accomplish in every aspect. We can, therefore, turn our mindful attention toward setting goals that are geared toward building the habits we want to impact our lives and vice versa. Without setting goals or objectives, life becomes a series of chaotic happenings we don’t control. we become the plaything of coincidence. 

SMART is an effective tool that provides the clarity, focus and motivation we need to achieve our goals. It can also improve our ability to reach them by encouraging us to define your objectives and set a completion date. SMART goals are also easy to use by anyone, anywhere, without the need for specialist tools or training.

Not only does SMART goal setting bring structure and trackability into our goals and objectives, it also creates verifiable trajectories towards a certain objective. Every goal or objective, from intermediary step to overarching objective, can be made S.M.A.R.T. and as such, brought closer to reality.

Consider the ways in which you would like to change the landscape of your life in the next six months. Then, apply your SMART principles and redefine your goal with awareness and nonjudgmental openness.

How SMART are your goals? Share with us in our Facebook and Twitter communities so we can inspire each other! 

Want more ways to embed Mindful practice into transforming your life? Enrollment is now open for the  Mindful Monday group – Apply here

Curious what I can offer you to help build the life you love? Get in touch!  

Connect with me to see what support I can offer!

Subscribe to my mailing list to get more valuable content weekly here!

Mindful Monday: Enrollment Now Open!

You may be finding yourself feeling a bit overwhelmed and run-down. You might be having a hard time catching your breath and feel rushed from one thing to the next without a moment to slow your racing mind down. There are tools and strategies to help you focus, find your footing again, and even feel the relief in your body and mind.

I am so excited to bring back the Mindful Monday 8 session series! We just had a brief glimpse into Mindfulness with our Mindfulness Matters 5 Day Challenge + 3 Bonus Days where people joined us from seven US states and four countries! In fact, people have shared with me that they are revisiting the challenge yet again on their own!

The exciting news is that we can broaden this practice in our Mindful Monday 8 session series! Our last round of the series brought so much benefit to our community. Here are some of the comments from group members:

“It was a really nice way to get myself into the mindset for a productive and calm week.”

“I learned so much about my body and mind and how my feelings showed up around them from these groups.”

“Sharing this with the others in the group made it a more deep experience for me. I gained a lot from each of the other people!”

This is one of my favorite practices and I am so thrilled about bringing it back to help people who are feeling stressed, unfocused, and overwhelmed get back on track.

mindful-monday-jpeg

Mindfulness offers so many benefits and ways of enhancing our lives – from Mindful eating to improving our mood, focusing, and increasing our productivity to building better relationships, this practice brings with it so many opportunities to deepen the experiences in your life. Learn a bit more in my interview with Rockland World Radio’s “Connections with Deborah Turner.”

Wondering how this series can benefit your life? Contact me to learn little more about how Mindful Monday can help you. And be sure to try a little sample!

Subscribe to my mailing list to get more valuable content weekly here!

Enrich Your Partnerships – 3 Tips for Mindful Relationships, PART 2

Last week, I provided an overview of how Mindfulness within relationships can help to enhance your connections. Today, I wanted to delve a bit more deeply into how this awareness of ourselves impacts our interactions with others.

The American Psychological Institute published a study conducted over 30 years that concludes that couples engaging in Mindful relationships experience greater physical, emotional and spiritual intimacy together. Instead of competition, aggression, codependence, and passive- aggression, Mindful couples experienced higher levels of harmony, personal and professional satisfaction and deeper, more stable levels of intimacy.

An awareness of our needs, responses, insecurities, and attractions is what allows intimacy and love to occur without repeating unwanted, unintentional patterns. Recognition of these patterns makes it possible to stop being carried by their momentum and instead begin making choices about the type of relationship we want to have.

With some practice, we can introduce foundational elements of Mindfulness into our relationships. A crucial element in implementing these exercises is to simply take an observational stance and notice rather than critique or evaluate. If we catch ourselves pulled toward this critiquing judgment, we can reset our observational stance by simply noticing the shift, letting it be, and return ourselves to simply noticing.

In the final portion of this three part series, I will give you 3 practical tips to build your Mindful presence with your loved ones and enhance your relationships. In the meantime, I’d love to hear your thoughts! Share with us in our Facebook and Twitter communities!

Subscribe to my mailing list to get more valuable content weekly here!

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