Sometimes the Small-Stuff matters… 4 steps to noticing


How to know when you have a green tail…

When one person tells you “you have a green tail, you think they’re crazy. When two people tell you “you have a green tail,” you think it’s a conspiracy. When three or more people tell you “you have a green tail,” you turn around and notice.

How can you notice your small-stuff before the rest of the world does?  Sometimes the small-stuff matters because sometimes the small-stuff, if ignored, turns into big-stuff.

Our personal small-stuff can offer us a host of information.  But small-stuff can also be about tolerating or putting up with other people’s behaviour or comments.  I’m sure you’ve heard the expression, “the straw that broke the camel’s back”.  Well the straw is an example of small-stuff and the camel could be you. It’s a powerful metaphor, which says that you are at a breaking point and it would only take one more seemingly insignificant comment or behaviour to send you reeling into an explosive reaction.

Small-stuff, like the straw, are often low grade, under-the-radar irritants, which are easily missed. They can fester and irritate like a pebble in a shoe or an unreachable itch.  They can be clandestine in nature but if noticed can offer a glimpse into the discord, which percolates beneath our layers of protection. They are the yellow warning lights… a cautionary message asking to be acknowledged. Best to pay attention to small-stuff irritations because they could be precursors to change. Notice them and prepare for the change they are nudging you towards.

If you choose to ignore a consistent nudge it could lead to a far greater and more serious intrusion. For example…

  • An employee who resists taking direction may resort to passive-aggressive behaviour. Unchecked, his lack of cooperation could undermine collaborative efforts and compromise the effectiveness of the program.
  • In personal or professional relationships, recurring negative behaviours or comments could initially be brushed off but over time, if continually minimized, could expand into full-blown confrontations.
  • Bullying could be another example of small-stuff leading to inappropriate big-stuff. A minor comment initially voiced as a joke could escalate and spread like a virus throughout a group. In truth no level of bullying should ever be acceptable or viewed as small-stuff. But in light of this article, inappropriate behaviour on a small scale could initially be rationalized and be seen as funny. Lack of awareness and compassion could transition them into hurtful attacks.
  • In a health perspective, an ignored chronic ache could lead to other more serious ailments.

The small-stuff are not meant to instill worry or fear but rather to draw attention to something lingering. Occasionally an irritant when handled with a neutral mind, void of judgment could be transformed into something beautiful. In nature, an oyster containing an irritant will produce nacre, a smooth coating that will build up layer upon layer to create a pearl.

Regardless of whether irritants lead to good or bad results, small-stuff are usually present for a reason. Notice them. Be like an animal in the wild when hearing a rustle or a subtle shift in the air. Its head will lift; ears perk up. Stillness will descend.  It knows that attention may be needed for imminent change and action.

So turn around and check out that green tail or any other small-stuff that may be hovering over you. Identify the nacre, which could potentially layer your small stuff… positive or negative.

Follow these steps in dealing with your small-stuff…

Notice it… pay attention to it. Look it straight in the eye.

Acknowledge it… Draw it up to your conscious mind and say “Ahha! I feel you, I see you no matter how small you are.” Takes less energy than denying it.

Communicate it… name it and share your discovery with someone.

Neutralize it… identify your attachment to it…positive or negative. Defuse it by finding the middle ground.

… Because the small-stuff can be critically important…

 “Don’t ignore the small things – the kite flies because of its tail.” Hawaiian proverb

“The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.” Samuel Johnson

Taking Notice…



Has your New Year’s Resolutions become a Spring Resolution?

It’s never too late to initiate a good intention.

Change Requires Awareness and Action

You are well into your resolutions of this new-year or are you?  My current article once again examines the notion of Noticing.  To follow through on a well-intended goal and bring about impactful change, you need to notice what it is you want to change or what you want to include or eliminate from your life.  This in turn requires that you pay attention to the behaviours, which will impact your resolutions and what motivates them.

What better time to once again reflect on your resolutions than when you find yourself on the threshold of springtime.  In the spring we leap forward by an hour, we revel in the bursting open of colourful blossoms and delightful scents.  But often we also acknowledge that we have once again let our good intentions slip off course.

Be curious about your actions, reactions and attitudes and remember, it’s never too late to start initiating a good intention.

A life well lived is the result of behaviours well noticed.

viviansig 2

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t wish to improve upon some aspect of themselves?
Most of us could be a little more efficient with our work, more committed to our personal needs, more conscientious with aligning aspects of our life, or more determined to tweak some wonky personal behaviour that keeps showing up.  Personal growth and professional development are certainly never far off my radar.  How about yours?

Life improvements can be pursued on a personal or professional level.  Although in the past I have said that these two realms often overlap, the truth is, achieving harmony between them is in itself a huge accomplishment.   Notice that I said “harmony” rather than “balance”.  Harmonious coexistence rather than balanced separation of the different aspects of our lives is the ultimate success in our growth experience.

But what happened this New-Year to that grand commitment for personal improvement… for that harmony within all parts of life?  

As you settle into your new year often your resolutions get put on the backburner where field 2 they gently simmer on low.  But if the pilot light is still aflame there’s opportunity to reignite the fire within you.  You need to let go of the excuses and revisit the goal.  It’s time to step into the change you wrote on that white board.  It’s time to notice what you wish to harmonize in your life!

So ask yourself the questions…
What do I wish to change in my life?
What do I wish to add to my life?
What do I wish to eliminate from my life?
What do I wish to create in my life?

Creating something new in your life however only works if you really want it, if you view it as meaningful and desirable, and if that desire comes from deep within you rather than from what you see others wanting or having. Then you will be highly motivated to make it happen and will not place it on the back burner.

“Between the end of one thought and the beginning of the next is a space. In that space, you will find your inner silence.”
Don Miguel Ruiz

But it’s not enough to think you want something.  You must also be sure that what you want is in alignment with who you are.  Confusing?  Sadly, people often think they should want what other people want.  They are motivated by external forces rather than noticing their own subtle internal nudging. Your internal voices can be quiet but persistent and it takes careful awareness and pause to enter your inner silence and to notice them.

Noticing what you want to change may seem like an obvious prerequisite to change but often it is difficult to articulate the very thing you yearn for or wish to change.  Sometimes it can take others to point out your quirks and habits.  But by noticing them you can create choice and set yourself up for successful change and achievable goals.

For example, have others pointed out to you behaviours that you may be unaware of?
Do you speak out of turn and interrupt others?
Are you inclined to deflect blame regularly onto others?
What are you chronically NOT taking responsibility for?
What do you circle or outright avoid doing?
Are you fearful of direct and challenging communication?

Welcome feedback with a neutral mind, rather than a defensive one.  Sit with the information received.  Determine whether it rings true for you.  Have you previously had some negative self-talk about it?  Know that you are the only one who can make the changes necessary to re-jig your behaviour and your life.

Noticing and developing awareness around these behaviours will help you advance to a new plateau both personally and professionally.  Noticing is a necessary first-step to initiating change and launching your goals into action.

ACT – Actions Can Transform.  Mental insights are not transformative or a substitute for change.  You need to distil your insights into a plan of action, which will move you forward to a new state of being.

Have a great day of Noticing, knowing that “it’s never to late to initiate a good intention

Taking Notice For Change

mountain lake boardwalk scene, taking notice for changeChange requires Awareness

A businesswoman, (let’s call her Janice), who after having gone through a difficult personal crisis, made the well-intentioned decision to shift her life-priorities. Janice resolved to reduce her workload so that she could fit in the meaningful yet overlooked and unattended aspects of her life.

Janice enjoyed the challenges of her career and took on her responsibilities with great dedication. However because of this over commitment to her work, Janice had little room for anything or anyone else. But the recent chaos in her life jolted her into a new awareness around life harmony and completeness.

Sound familiar? How often have you had a similar awakening as Janice did? Can you say “I feel complete in my life?” or instead is life saying to you “Hey, pay attention!” But often these seemingly pivotal moments create little more than vehement declarations followed by inaction. Much like a fully blown balloon fizzling to the ground as it loses air.

In Janice’s case she did take one more step by pledging to rejig her work modus operandi and let-go of her perfectionism and need to “do-it-all”. Yet without having a clear definition around what that would look like, she was left with the same old M.O. … micromanaging everything and being the go-to-person on her work team.

Janice had two critical concepts to consider if she was going to enjoy a new way of functioning.
The first was around her ability to Notice

  • What was her present situation? What was and wasn’t working?
  • Was she clear about her priorities around her work responsibilities?
  • Was she setting good boundaries?
  • What were her needs, values and wants? All different questions but related.
  • How did she ask for them?
  • What was her ideal vision of the new and better way of operating?

The answers to these questions would necessitate stepping back for some reflection and contemplation time.

The second critical concept Janice would need to consider was her ability to embrace Change. There is a lot written about and feared around change. People put up with or tolerate a lot of discord in their lives just so they don’t have to experience change.

change or stay the same, taking notice for changeChange can cause pain and stress because it often asks us to confront the unknown. The uncertainty of a meandering boardwalk can cause stress. But staying stuck in the same pattern can also cause stress. However it is this very stress, which can often become the tipping point for change to happen.

Janice catapulted into wanting change when she realized her present situation was no longer acceptable .. when the pain of staying where she was became greater than the pain of moving to the new … the unknown. Change takes courage, initiative, and sometimes a massive leap of trust into the unknown. What will it take for you to flick the switch from “same” to “change“?

“Courage is the power to let go of the familiar.”
Raymond Lindquist

The concepts of Noticing and Change are interdependent, the latter difficult to achieve without the former. It would be near impossible for Janice to change that which she had not yet identified. To initiate change in her old patterns of operations she would need to clarify what needed changing. This may seem obvious but sadly few of us can clearly articulate what creates dysfunction in our lives let alone what works, or for that matter, what we’d like our “new now” to look like.

“The range of what we think and do is limited by what we fail to notice – and, because we fail to notice that we fail to notice, there is little we can do to change until we notice how failing to notice shapes our thoughts and deeds.”
R. D. Laing, Scottish Psychiatrist

To experience harmony, resonance and flow in your personal and professional life explore and learn about that which you most need, value and want. Examine your present beliefs, perceptions and behaviours to clearly identify where change needs to happen. Only then will you be able to move forward with a positive plan of action to create the change that will improve your life.

Have an enlightened day and remember to share your stories below about your own experiences around Noticing and Change.

Taking Notice





Happiness is like a butterfly…


Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued is always just beyond your grasp but which, if you will sit down quietly may alight upon you.”
-Nathaniel Hawthorne

I love this perspective on happiness. It’s gentle, patient, welcoming and fully trusting. I once had a dream in which I was a butterfly and I flitted and fluttered in random circular motion around a child who waited patiently for me to land on her shoulder.
I was also this child and as a child who had all the time in the world, I waited quietly and patiently for the butterfly. As did the butterfly, I too stayed, for the most part, within my radius of comfort, not venturing too far until spontaneously I would stretch towards the boundaries of my freedom to explore and discover what lay just beyond.

The greatest comfort for me came when these two states-of-being, security and adventure, were allowed to co-exist as one, ebbing, expanding and intersecting without restriction. This coexistence allowed safety within my world while encouraging the exploration of the mystery beyond. This duality is also reflected in the Native myth of the butterfly. It is believed that a butterfly that lands on your shoulder brings you comfort but the butterfly also symbolizes transformation.
Thus there is safety in contentment yet uncertainty with shift and change. How better to realize happiness than through positive growth?

Pursuing happiness is as elusive as pursuing awareness or conscious living.
We don’t run after happiness rather we are happy.
We don’t run after awareness rather we are aware.
We don’t run after consciousness but rather we are conscious.
If we need life to happen, we need to just be with it. It is a state of being. Not one to track down or chase after but rather one to be open to in those quiet, reflective, sitting moments when all possibilities are invited in.
We need to allow happiness, joy, love, transformation and life to happen by being still…being aware…noticing. And then allow ourselves to transform into the state we wish to be.

“Success is not to be pursued, it is to be attracted by the person you become.”
-Jim Rohn

As you prepare for your day take time to allow the moment. By allowing the moment you become one with your space; one with your heartbeat; one with your thoughts; one with your body, mind and desires. Ease into your day by being aware of your state-of-being.
Is it happy, sad, troubled, anxious or at peace?
Be with that state and gently move it around as if looking for the best groove to ease it into. Like placing a piece into a puzzle, you can see the empty spot where it might fit but you’re unsure exactly how. You cock your head slightly visualizing the perfect angle to place your piece. You gently turn it, easing it into its position.

How do you ease yourself into position each day so that you can be your very best?
How do you allow growth and happiness to alight upon you?
How can you invite in the transformational message of the butterfly?

Have a wondrous day of allowing in happiness, mystery, and transformation. Be one with the butterfly within you!


© 2013 Lifework Coaching Inc.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this text at the bottom of it:

“Life coach Vivian Hitchman works with women between 30 and 50 how to notice their life and end their struggle in finding life harmony. Get her FREE REPOT “5 CRUCIAL STEPS TO RE-JIGGING YOUR OPTIMAL LIFE HARMONY… In a New & Creative Way” at www.LifeworkCoaching.net.”

So Now What?

So you’re feeling unsettled in your life. You’re ready to do more; do “different”. You’re tired of being stuck in a rut of immobility. You’ve committed to change. You’re open to hearing feedback. You’re ready to transform your life. So “now what?”

You’ve taken a big step in acknowledging that you need change and now an equally big step is figuring out how.

You can move forward by yourself or you can ask for help from a friend or better still, a professional.

Here’s a checklist of what the person you recruit should do for you….

• Create a trusting and respectful relationship so you can share your thoughts freely
• Guide you in defining your desires, your core values and needs
• Challenge you to identify and confront your blocks
• Request follow-through action steps
• Nudge you to stretch beyond your perceived limitations.
• Invite you to explore all possibilities.
• Be curious about you.
• Encourage you to create your own solutions.
• Offer you suggestions, options and resources.
• Investigate your confusions and contradictions.
• Probe for the meaning behind your words.
• Listen with compassion and without judgment.
• Celebrate your courage, strengths and progress.

It is difficult to move forward on your own steam so reach out. Giving support to others is a huge gift to them. Being open to receiving support from others is a huge gift to yourself. Pick someone with whom you can create a trusting relationship. When you do this you will be more likely to share fully and honestly and to commit to co-creating, with your new-found-support, the life you yearn for. Give your support permission to challenge you with powerful and sometimes challenging questions and to hold you accountable to follow-through on your action steps.

Knowing what you want to accomplish, how you will accomplish it, by when, and with what resources, will give you a strong start on the road to fulfillment. You will massage and mold your goal, re-looping back, if necessary, to an earlier step until it is stated in a way that is just right for your success. How exciting will it be for you to set realistic goals, which are within your reach? It is possible if you take that leap of awareness.

What do you need to clarify in your life so that you can step into change? Share your story by commenting to this post.

© 2012 Lifework Coaching Inc.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this text at the bottom of it:

“Life coach Vivian Hitchman works with women between 30 and 50 how to notice their life and end their struggle in finding life harmony. Get her FREE REPOT “5 CRUCIAL STEPS TO RE-JIGGING YOUR OPTIMAL LIFE HARMONY… In a New & Creative Way” at www.LifeworkCoaching.net.”

Smiling Gone Viral

Smiling statueHow much better would your life be with a little more smiling?

Sometimes the greatest gift you can give someone, especially during this festive season, is a friendly smile. It can become contagious. It can go viral.

Have we not all marveled at the massive success of a song, someone’s noble efforts or simple yet thought-provoking words gone viral? Well how about making smiling go viral?

Have you ever walked along, deep in thought, perhaps even in a melancholy mood, to be meet by another person’s wide grinned smile? Can you remember how it made you feel? How did you respond? Did you smile back or did you walk past trapped in your autopilot?

I don’t know about you, but I find that when I’m met with a smiling face I am jolted into friendly awareness followed by a reflective, wow-moment…. a reminder that I could use more of that. It’s never irritating or threatening. In fact I usually appreciate the gesture and start smiling at others. Smiling is contagious.

I’m not suggesting that being self-contained at times is a bad thing. But looking inwardly often requires that we connect outwardly and notice our surroundings. It’s part of being mindful. So welcome life’s joyful interruptions and smile back. Or better still be the one to initiate the smile.

My story… Recently I ordered a chai latte at one of my favourite latte shops. While waiting for my drink to be made, I moved away from the counter to chat with a friend. After engaging in conversation for longer than anticipated, I moved back to the counter sure that my latte would be ready. However to my frustration, my server hadn’t even started brewing it due to a communication glitch.

I was annoyed, impatient and down right unfriendly as I inquired about my drink. The woman barely noticed or should I say, took notice of my rude behaviour and proceeded to make my drink. As she was completing it, she looked up at me with a wide grin and asked, “Would you like extra foam on it?” Her smile was totally neutralizing.

I could no longer be angry.

AND by the way, how did she know I loved extra foam? I smiled back responding “Absolutely”, humbled, but more importantly, shifted by the experience. I left feeling lighter and happier and spent the rest of my afternoon, smiling at others. Go figure. So simple yet so powerful!

My request of you. . . Spend one entire day smiling at everyone you pass. Notice what happens and how it makes you feel. Chances are you’ll feel a whole lot happier. Plus I guarantee that you will create a ripple as others pay it forward. Your smile will go viral. Comment below and share here your experiences around smiling.


© 2012 Lifework Coaching Inc.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this text at the bottom of it:

“Life coach Vivian Hitchman works with women between 30 and 50 how to notice their life and end their struggle in finding life harmony. Get her FREE REPOT “5 CRUCIAL STEPS TO RE-JIGGING YOUR OPTIMAL LIFE HARMONY… In a New & Creative Way” at www.LifeworkCoaching.net.”

Inviting Change

For personal change to happen you need to be open to it. Often you may be motivated to change your behaviour when you receive positive and constructive feedback from others. However if there is judgment or a self-righteous flavour attached to the feedback, you can spiral into a defensive response. You want to be accepted unconditionally despite your shortcomings so to experience positive self-development you need to seek out the support of objective and caring people.

So how does change happen. Change is not embraced easily. Change is difficult because it upsets your existing “applecart”. But regardless of how dysfunctional your “applecart” might be, it is familiar and familiarity is comforting even if it doesn’t really serve you. It may have at one time but upon honest reflection you acknowledge that it’s power has shifted from helping you thrive to repressing your growth. So here’s the scoop. When the pain of staying in the same place i.e. tolerating your dysfunctional “applecart” becomes greater than the pain which comes from shifting to a new “applecart”, you will be highly motivated to change.

Once in this frame of mind, you will be open to change and be willing to move forward in your life in a positive way. You will need to identify and clarify where and who you are right now and what you desire to manifest in your future. This can take some work but you can only change that which you have named. Questions such as, “If I could transform one thing in my life, what would it be?” or “What am I tolerating today?” can lead you on an interesting journey within, to places long forgotten or ignored.

Once you have discovered the seed to your desire you can begin to design a clear, realistic and accomplishable vision. Through self-awareness and personal accountability, you will close the gap between your present day reality and your future vision.

What have you been tolerating or putting up with lately, which needs to be changed? Share your story by commenting to this post.

© 2012 Lifework Coaching Inc.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this text at the bottom of it:

“Life coach Vivian Hitchman works with women between 30 and 50 how to notice their life and end their struggle in finding life harmony. Get her FREE REPOT “5 CRUCIAL STEPS TO RE-JIGGING YOUR OPTIMAL LIFE HARMONY… In a New & Creative Way” at www.LifeworkCoaching.net.”

Struggling with “stuck-ness”? – Look within!

Have you ever wondered why you seem to be constantly “spinning your wheels” in your life? You know the feeling… working hard to secure your future but in reality being stuck in your daily routine, not really making headway. Liken it to a mime character that appears to be walking forward but in reality is just staying in the same spot. Or, as in Michael Jackson’s “moon walk”, moving backward as if on the slippery-slope-of-life.

How often are you so over-focused in your daily routine that you don’t even notice you are stuck in a rut? You can stay in this space of autopilot or unconscious living, for a long time with no excitement or energy for developing your hidden gifts and strengths. You may have dreams but usually they are gentle whispers with little optimism for realization.

What you don’t realize is that you have all the answers you need for change within you. However these insights are often so deeply enfolded within the layers of your unconscious you don’t know how to connect with them. If you delve into those folds and discover your truth you can raise your sights to a new level of awareness and clarify how you wish to live your life in a different and more meaningful way.

But it isn’t always easy to access your truth and wisdom. You may need the help of a friend or better still, an objective professional who is able to ask thought provoking questions and mirror back to you what they see and hear. There is a saying… “You only learn who you are, when others reflect it back to you.” The compassionate support of another can assist you in recognizing your values, needs, strengths, and desires. She or he can guide you in putting your vision into motion and hold you accountable for its attainment. So the simple answer to moving out of your “stuck-ness” is to ask for help in identifying where you are and where you want to go.

When did you last ask for support when having to make a critical life decision? Share your story by commenting to this post.

© 2012 Lifework Coaching Inc.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this text at the bottom of it:

“Life coach Vivian Hitchman works with women between 30 and 50 how to notice their life and end their struggle in finding life harmony. Get her FREE REPOT “5 CRUCIAL STEPS TO RE-JIGGING YOUR OPTIMAL LIFE HARMONY… In a New & Creative Way” at www.LifeworkCoaching.net.”

The Art and the Act of Noticing

My past messages to you have been around the concept of NoticingNoticing one’s life always has an outcome.  Sometimes it can be a passive outcome where it can initiate thought and sometimes it can be an active outcome where it can trigger change.  It can be defined as the actof noticing or the art of noticing?  Sometimes, both exist in tandem.  The act is about our need to have a call-to-action so that we can be in touch and engaged with our surroundings. . . with our life.  It is what makes us vital, vibrant and dynamic.

The art of noticing is about how we can be transformed or transported by what we notice. Noticing can describe and translate the state of being we enjoy as a result of it?  It can make us more alert, more creative, more focused, more appreciative, more loving, and more patient, to name a few?

Noticing can show up as the most obvious or the most understated and discreet.  I experienced the latter recently during my morning run.  As I entered the familiar riverside park I frequented for many years, I noticed a sign, close to the ground, off to the side of the entrance road.  It read, “Thank you so much for reading this nonsense.  Enjoy.”  It was signed, The Artist.  It was stained and tarnished, quite faded by years of inclement weather.  But where was the nonsensical writing or art piece it was drawing my attention to?  I could find nothing.  If it had been there in previous years clearly I had missed it?  But perhaps it was only recently placed there as an oddity unto itself, stirring curiosity, chuckling in its inanimate way saying, “Hey you! Notice me. . . I dare you!”

My outcome for noticing this message was both an artand an act.  The artful aspect elicited a feeling of wonderment, a sense of humour, entertainment, questioning, specialness and curiosity. My imagination wove a story beyond the realm of plausibility.  But that was the whole point; the wonderfully artful aspect of noticing is to transport one out of the ordinary and mundane.  Finding this plaque stimulated my creative thoughts and I was pumped to launch into my day’s work.

But it didn’t stop there.

My outcome went well beyond that for this art of noticing lead me to an act.  It seemed to stimulate my running. . . I ran farther, faster and with greater enjoyment.  When I arrived home I was highly motivated to journal about my finding and inspired to move into my own work tasks with enthusiasm.

Living and thriving happens when we are in synchrony with all aspects of our daily life.  It’s when they ebb and flow with one another that we truly experience light-hearted bliss and harmony.

What have you noticed today, which will catapult you towards inspiration and powerful action?  Take time toNotice Your Life and all that resonates within it.

If you didn’t have a chance to complete your complimentary Personal Daily Practice form titledInitiating the Art and the Act of Noticing, offered in my previous article, I invite you to do so now. Begin to heighten your awareness around noticing.

© 2012 Lifework Coaching Inc.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this text at the bottom of it:

“Life coach Vivian Hitchman works with women between 30 and 50 how to notice their life and end their struggle in finding life harmony. Get her FREE REPOT “5 CRUCIAL STEPS TO RE-JIGGING YOUR OPTIMAL LIFE HARMONY… In a New & Creative Way” at www.LifeworkCoaching.net.”

What’s your “Noticing” Quotient? Part II

It is interesting what happens when one draws attention to something. In my last newsletter, I wrote about the importance of noticing. . . noticing myself and the world around me. Although I have been honing my skills around this practice for many years I feel by drawing my attention to it in a very conscious manner and renewing my commitment to including it in my Personal Daily Practice (PDP), I have stretched myself to a new level of noticing. . . . In a sense, my efforts to notice have become even more acute. This is exciting for me to see my world through a new and sharper lens.

Each morning I go for a short run. I place no pressure on myself in terms of speed, duration of time or style but rather focus on easing into my day and noticing my state of being and that, which vibrates around me. It is amazing how this simple act of morning noticing brings me appreciation and gratitude for what and who is present in my life. It also highlights that, which may need my attention.

But let me take a step back as my act of noticing actually begins at that moment when my consciousness is gradually awakened from my world of dreams. I invite you to also begin your PDP by noticing your first wakeful breath. Consider this initiation. . . .

Your Personal Daily Practice….
Learning the Act of Noticing 

Notice how you wake in the morning?
Are you startled by your transition from sleep to wakefulness?
Are you groggy, sleepy, listless and down in your mood?
Or is your entry more gradual, calm and rested.
Or do you bounce out with enthusiasm?

Are you stressed by what the world may deliver to you?
Or are you excited to launch into your day?
Where in your body do you most feel it?
Describe your state of being in this very moment?
How acute are your senses to this feeling?
How strong is your desire to change this way of being?

With your eyes still closed, draw your attention to your inner waking space.
Breathe deeply into your belly, letting it expand fully and then exhale by hollowing it.
Collapse your mid-section, curling your spine and shoulders.
Repeat the inhale as you role your shoulders back, gently arching your spine.

Now open your eyes.
Stretch and flex your limbs.
Notice any tension, pinching, tightening, or gripping.
Notice what you perceive with your eyes, ears, smell, and touch
Notice your emotions.
Notice your state of mind.
Notice your cellular configuration.

As you rise out of bed. . . .
Notice the room.
Notice the colour and texture of the light.
Notice the walls and the ceiling,
Notice the floor in your room and down through the hallways
Notice what flutters and peers in at you through the windows.

As you move into your family space. . .
Notice the other members of your household.
Notice the words you use to express yourself to them.
Notice how they react to you.
Notice other’s interactions with you.
Notice how you react to them. . .

If you choose to engage in an encounter with nature. . . connecting with your garden, or running along a nearby trail. . .

Notice the beauty. . .
Notice the jarring. . .
Notice the colours around you. . . deeply rich or vibrant spring greens, multiple layers of shades and pastels.
Notice how nature never discriminate in its colour or texture combinations.
Notice how silently the early morning shadow of a branch sweeps across your path.
Notice how your own shadow follows only inches behind or beside you.
Notice how nature twists and turns, ebbs and flows, offers and then withdraws. . .

Notice the buzzes, the chirps, the trickles, the whispers.
Notice the aromatic whiffs of a blooming scent.
Notice Father-Sky above you; and Mother-Earth beneath you.
Stop for a moment as you absorb these gifts. . . .
Notice how your body responds.

When back in your family space savour a steaming cup of your beverage of choice as you integrate all that you noticed and feel how your body has responded thus far. . . .

I would recommend listening to Paul Horn’s beautiful CD called Taj Mahal to gently accompany you heralding in your morning.

If you didn’t have a chance to complete your complimentary Personal Daily Practice (PDP) form titled Step 1 – Initiating the Act of Noticing, offered on my previous newsletter, I invite you to do so now. Begin to heighten your awareness around noticing. Next newsletter we’ll continue our journey in the Act of Noticing

Download your complimentary form here.

© 2012 Lifework Coaching Inc.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this text at the bottom of it:

“Life coach Vivian Hitchman works with women between 30 and 50 how to notice their life and end their struggle in finding life harmony. Get her FREE REPOT “5 CRUCIAL STEPS TO RE-JIGGING YOUR OPTIMAL LIFE HARMONY… In a New & Creative Way” at www.LifeworkCoaching.net.”

What’s your “Noticing” Quotient?

The concept of noticing has been a source of fascination for me for decades, dating back to my days as a Specialized Kinesiology or Brain Gym Consultant. My approach then was consistent with my Coaching approach today . . . define and refine your personal awareness and notice what you truly value, need, and desire. By understanding your internal and exterior landscape, you will set accomplishable goals. Being aware of and noticing your physical, emotional and mental state, as well as being finely attuned to your surroundings are all paramount to moving from surviving to thriving in your life.

Jacques Lusseyran, a blind hero of the French Resistance, powerfully expressed this in a book called “And there was light”.

“Because of my blindness, I had developed a new faculty. Strictly speaking, all men have it, but almost all forget to use it. The faculty is “Attention”. In order to live without eyes it is necessary to be very attentive, to remain hour after hour in a state of wakefulness, of receptiveness and activity. In deed attention is not simply a virtue of intelligence or the result of education. It is a state of being. In its truest sense it is the listening post of the universe.”

Based on this passage, it could be argued that Attention is the next step to Noticing or perhaps synonymous with it. Something draws our attention and we notice it. Or in reverse we notice something fleeting and it captures our attention, wanting to be explored for deeper understanding or expansion. For the visually impaired, it is imperative. For those with the gift of sight it can be life enhancing.

Many choose to meander through life unacquainted with their physical state in space, unaware of the emotions, needs and feelings, which stir within them, insensitive and perhaps even untouched by their surroundings. But one can chose to walk in life in a state of full consciousness and a hypersensitivity to the faculties of awareness and noticing, choosing to cast attention to all that flows around them.

Better to choose to notice our physicality, awareness of our proprioception, or physical relationship with our surroundings. Sensory acuteness through touch, sensations and feelings all give messages about our state of being. We may ask the question . . . am I being asked to step into action to initiate change and improvement in my situation?

Better to choose to notice the details of our surroundings; the first light of day, or the fading hue of dusk. We may want to ask the question . . .. How has my day shifted and transformed today? Do I need to let go of something and move into the phase of new creation?

Better to choose to notice the subtleties of nature; colours, shapes, textures and smells. We may want to ask the question . . . How has this day allowed me to manifest a sense of well-being, peace, joy and contentment?

Better to choose to notice what is being communicated by a look, a gesture, a glance, a whisper . . .. We may want to ask the question. . .. Who is in need of my support today? Who can I give a helping hand to? Or who would like a little bit of my time?

Better to choose to notice one’s state of emotional being . . . level of joy, happiness, anxiousness or fear. We may want to ask the question. . .. Is there something, which needs attention, resolution, and confirmation or am I being asked to simply feel gratitude for the contentment, which exists within?

Welcome in this state of awareness by developing your own PDP . . . Personal-Daily-Practice. Create space and openness to the internal and external stimuli and notice and draw attention to the messages intended for you.

Often the morning is an excellent time to initiate this sense of awareness as it can instill calm and readiness for whatever the rest of the day will deliver to you.

This practice can take any shape or form . . . a reflective moment with yourself, drawing attention to your breath and inner state of being before bolting from bed. Or rising and spending time in meditation either in a quiet space in your home or out in nature. You set the stage for your initiation into each day.

Regardless of what your PDP includes, be it personal reflection, deep breathing, meditation, stretching, yoga, journaling, walking, running, hiking or simply being, do it with intention and do it consistently. Get to the point where there is no room for internal dialogue, discussion or debate with yourself about doing it. You do your PDP because it is simply who you are. Keep changing and transforming it until it becomes your “state of being” . . .. Until it becomes the “listening post” to your universe.

To create your Personal Daily Practice you will need to hone and heighten your skills in Noticing.

For Step 1 in this process, fill out a MY PERSONAL DAILY PRACTICE – PDP – Initiating the Act of Noticing form

Download your complimentary form here.

© 2012 Lifework Coaching Inc.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this text at the bottom of it:

“Life coach Vivian Hitchman works with women between 30 and 50 how to notice their life and end their struggle in finding life harmony. Get her FREE REPOT “5 CRUCIAL STEPS TO RE-JIGGING YOUR OPTIMAL LIFE HARMONY… In a New & Creative Way” at www.LifeworkCoaching.net.”

Yes I Can!!… Turning Point from Good to Great

It’s been a little over a year since we celebrated one of the most successful Olympic and Paralympics events. The often nail-biting excitement of watching, on TV, these world class athletes perform within milliseconds of one another was only surpassed for me by being onsite and watching them in person.

Yes, I was fortunate enough to secure a Supervisory position, working along side many wonderful and highly committed volunteers.

My main focus was Ski Jumping. Positioned at the base of the two jaw-dropping take-off ramps in the beautiful Callaghan Valley, I watched as one fearless skier after another soared like Squamish Eagles, with the hopes of landing furthest-yet, along the run-out.

I still get shivers thinking of the courage and skill these skiers demonstrated.

Now the fever has waned somewhat but the subsequent energy continues as people reflect on the many memorable events and high lights of those games. Lifework Coaching has also been energized in the aftermath of the excitement and is launching its online newsletter.

The Olympics and Paralympics were hugely successful, not only because of the commitment, determination, and accomplishments demonstrated by our outstanding Canadian athletes but also because of the emotions we allowed ourselves, as a nation, to feel and express in support of them. No more circling our greatness and uniqueness. No more apologizing for our patriotism. In the process of welcoming in the world we have shepherded in the dawn of something very big for ourselves, as Canadians. The notion of “Yes we can” feels good to say.

As a nation we have found our voice to celebrate our greatness. As individuals how can we each do the same? Have you acknowledged your greatness through this notion of “Yes I can?”

If based on an old behavioural pattern, there comes a time, when holding back and minimizing your strengths and successes doesn’t serve you anymore. Finding your voice is the most powerful shift you can make…. having and demonstrating a knowing and a confidence that you have much to offer those around you as well as yourself.

What have you recently said, “yes I can” to?
Where and how did you muster up the courage to take that extra step?
How did your actions transport you to a place of empowerment?
How did you feel afterwards?
How did those around you receive your actions?
How did you express and celebrate your greatness?
How will you duplicate your newfound behaviour?

We need to look within to discover our opportunities to shine for it is when we acknowledge and show our brilliance that we can best serve ourselves and the world, and truly make a difference.

Boy mountain climbingAs K’naan’ says in his inspirational song, “Wavin’ Flag”, which was chosen as the official FIFA’s World Cup 2010 theme song, “…. You have to know, the urge to make a change lies within….”.

Your special gifts are yours to discover but not yours to keep. So pass them on! What are you feeling the “urge to do”? Go within, notice your own “urge to change” and find your own special ways to express and fulfill it.

Yes I can… turn my attitude from judgment to compassion.
Yes I can… shift my perspective from my view to our view.
Yes I can … do 10 more crunches.
Yes I can… climb the stairs instead of take the escalator.
Yes I can… find the next toehold on that rockface.
Yes I can… do one small thing to make the world a little better place today?

What’s your “yes I can?” What small shift will initiate your turning point from good to great? Comment below!

© 2012 Lifework Coaching Inc.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this text at the bottom of it:

“Life coach Vivian Hitchman works with women between 30 and 50 how to notice their life and end their struggle in finding life harmony. Get her FREE REPOT “5 CRUCIAL STEPS TO RE-JIGGING YOUR OPTIMAL LIFE HARMONY… In a New & Creative Way” at www.LifeworkCoaching.net.”