Summer '17 
        Vol 10, Issue 7         
Creative Coaching Group
 the Creative Coaching Group newsletter
Most of us fall prey at times to debilitating negative self-talk. The effects of that negative messaging can show up insidiously in many different shapes and forms and frequently act as a barrier to success for my coaching clients.
What might change if your ever-present internal messages shifted to ones based in love, acceptance and encouragement? Read the feature article below to help shift your thinking.

  Jan Carley BA, CEC, PCC  
  Professional Certified Executive Coach     
  Creative Coaching Group      
Do you have a bunch of nattering voices in your head that are generally a pain to listen to? Do those voices tend to say "You suck!" instead of "You rock!"?
If self-criticism has become your auto-response, you have created a bad habit. The good news is - you can form another habit! The concept of neuroplasticity says your brain is capable of changing in the way it functions. Neuroscientist Michael M. Merzenich, PhD, at the University of California said, "The brain is not like a computer that has fixed wiring and connections. Every aspect of you is created by the brain revising itself in response to your interactions in the world... How you define yourself - the person you are - is a product of plastic changes in your brain."¹
Transforming negative thinking doesn't occur instantly but is possible. Self-directed neuroplasticity² says that our minds are responsible for controlling our brain.
With focused effort, practice, time and commitment, it is possible for us to make profound, fundamental changes in how our brains operate. We have the power!  
All change starts with awareness. We must adopt  the objective eye of a scientist doing research and "assess" ourselves instead of "judge". Are your thoughts often self-critical? Do you routinely beat yourself up? After having a negative thought, do you continue to place attention on that thought or let it pass and refocus? Not sure?  

Run your self-talk thoughts through the 3 question Awareness Self-Talk TUG Test below.
If the answer to all 3 questions in the TUG TEST is YES
, then continue putting attention on those True, Useful, Generative thoughts - they are building a positive neural pathway that will help move you forward.
If the answer to any of the questions in the TUG Test is NO, then you will want to shift those thoughts to positive ones that serve you.  Choose some of the steps below to get you started.
When the negative thought comes into your head, notice it, and before you say aloud one of your usual self put-downs, insert a positive thought in your head about the same general subject that is TRUE. e.g. / "The sauce is runny, I'm a lousy cook" thought might turn to "What wonderful conversation we have had at this dinner party"; the "I screwed up the Introduction to the report" thought might switch to "I really was thorough on the body of the report." The "I missed another choreo move - I'm a klutz" might shift to "I am learning and getting better bit by bit". Better thoughts lead to better feelings, which lead to better action. Where thought goes, energy flows.
If you focus on the belief that you are exactly where you ought to be at this very moment (no matter how messy or incomplete), you will be freed from the pressure of having to be "something else". Writer and researcher, Brené Brown³, describes it as the journey from "What will people think" to "I am enough". You are more than enough - just the way you are.  Take away the "shoulds", the musts, the comparisons, and the focus on lack or scarcity. You are enough. That is your new paradigm.
Focus your energy on where you want to go or who you want to be instead of focusing on what you don't want /or don't want to be. FLIP IT! Flip your mental focus to a forward-thinking positive one. Flip your thinking from the lack, or scarcity, into the abundant possibilities of what you want.  

Make a practice of consistently nurturing a positive mental state to strengthen your new neural pathways. Remind yourself of your gifts and just how fabulous you are. Surround yourself with visual reminders of "Who you be".  Write some positive reminders on sticky-notes and read them daily. "I am honest, I am loyal, I am creative, I have beautiful eyes" etc.  Create a PEP Phrase (Personal Empowerment Phrase) that inspires you like "I can do this", or "I am confident and prepared" and recite it daily.
Gratitude expands - the more you have, the more you have to be grateful for. Gratitude positivizes your focus and instantly takes your focus from a place of scarcity to abundance. When you are having negative thoughts about yourself, intentionally shift your thoughts and become "other-focused".  Look outward and put your focus onto what you are grateful for.  
Enroll trusted friends or colleagues to help you make your personal paradigm shift. Have them remind you to "Flip Your Focus" when you start going down the mental rabbit-hole.  Consider getting the support of a professional coach to help you begin your mindset shift. Join a group (or create one) of people trying to create something new and positive in their lives. 
Celebrate each time you catch yourself in a negative thought and are able to reframe it. Even a small celebration or reward releases a shot of congratulatory dopamine, which reinforces the new behaviour and continues to strengthen your new positive neural pathways.  
¹ Michael Merzenich interview, Oprah Magazine, August 2008, p. 220  
² A concept from researcher Dr. Jeffrey M. Schwartz in his book, The Mind and the Brain 
³ Brené Brown, Book:"The Gifts of Imperfection"  

Lightbulb of the Month

"When you are playing against yourself, you never win"
                                                         -Margaret Carley (1924-2015)
You can't judge a book by looking at it's cover! Or, can you?
Well, evidently you CAN!  Upon receiving some expert marketing and pr advice, I have undertaken a "facelift" for my new book.  A new title, new cover design and back cover copy.  The new (old) book will be onsale in September. Curious? You will have to wait! 
Ready to shift?  Book a 90 minute JAN JAM Coaching reboot
The easiest way out to shift a pattern of behaviour is to enlist the support of a coach thinking partner.  Let me ask you the clarifying questions to help move you into proactive forward motion and positive possibilities once more.  I call this a "Jan Jam" coaching reboot.
  90 minute JAN JAM reboot coaching intensive
                                         $259 CAD - includes all taxes
For Coaches: Want to sharpen your skills and competencies?
Mentor coaching is an effective way to hone your coaching skills to enhance effectiveness so you will bring more value to your clients. Single sessions/or Value 3-packages are available. Contact Jan for more information.   For those renewing their ACC Credential  in 2017   

Join Jan and do a deep dive into the ICF competencies to enhance your coaching skill set. Perfect for the coach needing Mentor Coaching hours for certification.  
This 3 month course fulfills the requirements for the 10 hours of mentor coaching needed to renew your ICF ACC Credential, or for ACC and PCC non-ACTP applicants.  

Fall Cohort:  September 18 - December 18

*email Jan Carley for a sign-up application  
(maximum 10 learners per cohort)  
About Jan Carley  
Jan Carley is a Professional Certified Executive Coach credentialed with the International Coach Federation. Known as a high-performance catalyst, Jan specializes in coaching individuals and teams to focus and expand their vision and leverage their signature strengths to open possibilities and maximize their potential.
Her first book, Harmony from the Inside Out, has been widely acclaimed and is now in its 3rd printing.   Her 2nd book, The Overtone Effect, will be onsale by September 2017.3rd edition of Jan's book

Jan is Associate Faculty of the renowned Royal Roads University Executive Coaching Program, is a Professional Mentor coach and a certified facilitator of the Strength Deployment Inventory .  
Jan lives in Vancouver, BC, Canada, and is available for individual & team coaching, workshops and speaking engagements worldwide. PCC logo

Contact Jan at 604 873-1763    email: 
Quick Links
Jan' Coaching Company Creative Coaching Group
Jan's work with BarbershoppersInner Coach of Barbershop
Jan's popular first bookHarmony From the Inside Out
If you would like to reprint any part of this ezine in your blog or newsletter, please feel free to do so as long as you include the following credit information: Jan Carley inspires possibilities and leverages peak performance by coaching from the "inside out." Sign up to receive her free 15 page report, 5 Ways to Instantly Focus for Harmony and Success, and receive a free subscription to Jan's monthly coaching e-newsletter, LIGHT ON THE SUBJECT.   Creative Coaching Group
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