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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Letting Go of Old Data Sets – Rhoads Life Coaching

Sometimes we have trouble seeing change based on large pools of historical data. Letting go of old data sets helps measure whether we are growing or not.

Take a 5-gallon bucket full of water and add 5 more drops of water. It might be REALLY difficult to measure any change in the water (or the bucket). Now empty the bucket (all the way), and THEN add 5 drops of water. It might not be easy, but I would bet you it is possible to see a change in the water (and the bucket) with just the 5 drops.

Do we do this in relationships? How about to ourselves? When navigating a conflict, or asking for a change, do you bring ALL of the previous data you have collected to your measurement? Are you surprised when it is difficult to see a change when the old data skews your view?

Please do not hear that I am advocating dismissing prior experience. It is vital that the things we have learned be kept as reference.

What I am advocating is looking for instances where new data gets washed out, or can’t be seen, through the lens of historical beliefs. My ask is to consider creating new data sets when asking for change and letting go of the old data in your calculations as to whether your life is improving or declining. Just like bats under the Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin, it is possible to see their presence first as an attribute, then a nuisance, then as an attribute again.

Where do you need to start a new data set in your life? –

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Accept Where You Are – Rhoads Life Coaching

In order to begin any change, development, or growth you must first accept where you are. This may seem like a simple statement until you have to make multiple attempts at changing something about yourself.

Ask anyone who has attempted to quit smoking, lose weight, or keep a New Year’s resolution. Our lessons of what works and doesn’t work in regard to change frequently have to be recalibrated after determining that we started from an inaccurate beginning.

Maybe you didn’t know how difficult it would be to grow or develop. Or maybe you didn’t fully understand how hard it would be to let go of something. These, and many others, are observations of not accepting where we are when we start.

Where do you have a blind spot that prevents you from accepting where you are? Or better yet, what are you in denial about that prevents an accurate beginning? Even if I understand that my stress level is too high, if I don’t accept it I will continue down an unhealthy path. Where are you not being honest with yourself? What would it take to accept where you are?

If you cannot accept the reality of where you must begin, you will be starting from a false starting point. –

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Name the Fear (You Are Not Your Fear) – Rhoads Life Coaching LLC

What do you fear? Can you say it out loud or write it down? Frequently we lose courage and energy by avoiding an unnamed and hidden anxiety or terror. There is power in being able to name the fear!

Just like J.K. Rowling’s “He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named”, our fear builds by not naming what scares us. The fear itself steals our energy as much or more than the actual person or situation.

What are you afraid of? Speaking in public? Losing a loved one? Losing your job? What would it take to say it out loud or to write the fear down? Suddenly the things we are afraid of is outside of us instead of swirling around inside. We can see it and don’t have to work to hide it.

One step further – C.S. Lewis wrote the “Screwtape Letters” giving a senior devil in hell an actual name and persona. By creating a character the fear not only materialized, but could also be observed and understood. What if you not only named your fears, but then gave them a name?

Suddenly you could talk to your fears like they were a person. If the fear is a character then it is no longer who you are as a person yourself. Do you believe that about yourself? You are not your fears!

Give it a try! Who would best embody your fear? What do they look like or sound like? What do they say and how do they behave? All of these answers provide context about how to overcome and banish that fear. You can take your power back when you name the fear! –

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Change Has To Be Something Different – Rhoads Life Coaching

Sometimes the most obvious things can be the most profound. I have been laughing and shaking my head this week at how much it struck me to hear the statement, “For innovation to happen, change has to be something different”.

Let that sink in for a minute. It is painfully obvious, right? Duh! Of COURSE something has to be different. Having worked with a lot of people around growth and development (the foundations of my coaching practice), I can tell you that most of us say we want change, but we don’t really hear or believe it. Don’t believe me? Put your wallet in your other pocket for a day. Or carry your purse on your opposite shoulder. See how different your day is!

Rarely do I meet someone who doesn’t want their life to improve. For things to get better. But if nothing is different about how they live, then nothing will change.

We have to create a space to allow change to happen. By definition we have to do something different to create the space for our business, clients, employees, family, friends, and children to develop and grow. If that different space isn’t created, nothing will change.

So where in your life are you preventing something different from happening (both intentionally and unintentionally)? Where do you want things to be better, but there is no space to create something new? How will you see things differently and look for different spaces to create in order to change? –

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Being Fierce vs. Being Aggressive – Rhoads Life Coaching

From my viewpoint, there is a difference between being fierce vs. being aggressive. As a culture we have a difficult time being powerful, assertive, and confident without being aggressive. There is a dilemma in being aggressive in our attempts to move toward what we want. In my mind aggression has an aspect of violence in it that frequently does harm to those around us.

So how is fierce different? For me, the image of being fierce has a sense of fire, a passionate burning, a confidence that holds boundaries and drives us forward. Being fierce has many of the same characteristics as being aggressive without the addition of violence.

Why do you care? If our main method of teaching how to be bold, confident, and passionate comes through the lens of being aggressive, we create athletes, business partners, and personal relationships laced with the mindset that violence is acceptable.

What would it look like to be fierce instead of aggressive? Is it possible for you to be passionate, bold and confident without being violent? How would you treat yourself and others? What do you need in order to create that fire in your belly that doesn’t burn you to the ground? Pay attention to when you are being fierce vs. being aggressive. Can you remove some of the aggression from your confidence and boldness? –

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Definition of Terms – Rhoads Life Coaching

We struggle to communicate because we use different definitions for the same words. Until we create a common definition of terms, until we calibrate our communication, we will continue to misunderstand each other.

This calibration boils down to the fundamentals of communication. Words like “good”, “fine”, and “great” end up being throw aways in our culture because I don’t have any idea what you mean when you say, “I’m good”. Based on your definition you may be surviving, where by my definition I would mean you are thriving. We have missed each other in terms of communicating.

Unfortunately this happens to us all the time. Ranking frustration on a scale of zero to ten on a scale (zero being no frustration, ten being enraged), a level of three on my scale has a different description than your level three. Until we create a common definition of terms, it is difficult to understand fully.

So how to calibrate?

It is important to SLOW DOWN when we are having meaningful conversations!

It is vital to ASK when you aren’t sure what someone means.

If you aren’t being heard, it is important to PAUSE and take the time to CLARIFY.

The more SPECIFIC we can be in our descriptions of feelings or thoughts, the easier it is to calibrate. Using “angry” to describe all levels of frustration creates a very broad definition that is difficult to calibrate.

Where is your communication not calibrated with someone else? Where are you being vague? Who do you communicate with regularly where a definition of terms would improve understanding and communication? There are significant benefits for your employees, clients, coworkers, family, and friends if you a hear them more accurately and feel heard yourself? Time to define terms! –

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Why Do I Coach? – Rhoads Life Coaching

Last week I posted ‘What IS Coaching?” If I were coaching myself, the next natural questions becomes ‘Why Do I Coach?’

Being a coach ends up fulfilling my purpose and creates meaning in nearly everything I do. For those of you who know me, I have a wide range of interests and careers. Coming from a biology background, I geek out about how individuals fit together creating a larger habitat and ecosystem. With my experience in the financial industry, I find value in how people create purpose and meaning for themselves. Through leadership development training and coaching at a non-profit, I found the value of having a story, finding a vision and purpose, and taking a whole-person approach to living and growing.

The reality is, I am trying to walk the talk of what I believe about who we are as human beings. It has become my purpose to help others find that in themselves. It is humbling to watch an individual connect the dots and reach up to a higher level of development and growth!

If you are interested to learn how coaching would work for you; message Rhoads Life Coaching to sign up for a FREE consultation! –

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

What IS Coaching – Rhoads Life Coaching

So what IS coaching? More importantly, why do you care?

I find it interesting that we investing so much time, energy, and money into coaching athletes. Almost as soon as our children can walk, all the way up to the highest levels of professionals, we trust in coaches to develop athletes in every possible way. Once our athletic careers are over and we settle on a profession, for most of us coaching stops. Why is that? Why would athletics need more focused development that other areas of life?

A coach is someone who helps someone develop themselves (whether a team or individual). Coaching is different from teaching, therapy, consulting and advising and it can be applied to nearly every aspect of life. These other roles usually tell someone what to do or how to do it. A coach is looking for helping the individual develop themselves. If a coach is doing their job well, the individual is finding their own answers. Remember a coach doesn’t go out of the field to play!

So why do you care? Why do you need a coach? If it was valuable to develop your batting, throwing, tackling, foul shots, serves, etc., why is it not valuable to develop your communication, conflict resolution, emotional intelligence, relational intelligence, values, goals, and vision? EVERY aspect of our lives can be developed. Coaching becomes one method of intentionally developing specific pathways.

What aspects of your personal and professional life could benefit from development? How could coaching accelerate your growth? What’s holding you back? –

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Humility vs. Self-Deprecation – Rhoads Life Coaching

We have a strange relationship with humility. Frequently we do not make a distinction in humility vs. self-deprecation. We want to be affirmed, but don’t want to be boastful. We want others to recognize our value instead proclaiming it. Sometimes we hide our talent or ability and this self-deprecation limits our ability to help others connect with what they want and need.

To be clear, I am not advocating for boastful pride. I do not recommend exaggeration and lies about what you have done or who you are. I am suggesting that for most of us we hold back in some way and sell ourselves short before the world is able to recognize our value.

How does this appear in your life? Do you not give data to your clients or employer describing what you have accomplished in the last year? Have you kept your mouth shut in a meeting or conflict when you have an idea for a potential solution? Do you decide that someone isn’t going to like you before you go into an interview or out on a date?

I would argue that we have each been given a light to shine out into the world. Our talents, our strengths, our values and abilities are needed around us and hiding those lights under a basket prevent the world from receiving your value.

This self-deprecation is not valuable. There is a need to be modest and humble with how we describe ourselves. But if you are limiting the accuracy of our talents and gifts you are not filling your purpose! –

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life