5 Pathways to Saying NO – And Not Even Feel Guilty Doing So

So your life is chaotic, jam packed and crazy. You wake up each morning wondering how you are going to get through the day because you have so much to do.

When you drop the kids at school another parent approaches you about organizing a bake sale/ wrapping paper drive/capital campaign (pick one). What do you say? “Yes. Sure. Of course.”

What have you done? You have added one more thing to your already jam packed life.

Saying NO is a very important part of living the life of your dreams. We all want to be involved in the things that we want to be involved in but many of us are involved in things we don’t want to be involved in.

Why? Guilt, usually, but also the inclination to be helpful, to carry our share of the load and to set a good example for our kids.

These are all great things. But really, if you want to be the best person that you can be, to set a great example for your kids, you have to learn to say NO.

Here are 5 Pathways to Saying NO – and Not Even Feel Guilty Doing So.

#1 – Believe in yourself and your reasoning for saying NO. When you are asked to do something take a moment, or an hour or a day, to really consider why you would add this thing to your pile.

Would it satisfy you? Do you have the time? Do you have the interest? Is it the best use of your already limited time?

Giving careful consideration to something before committing to it will allow you to say NO with conviction. You have solid reasoning as to why you shouldn’t do it. If you believe in your reasoning then it will be way easier to stand up and say NO.

#2 – Keep your NO explanation, respectful, short and sweet. When preparing to say NO always begin delivering the message in a respectful way. Say that you are happy to have been asked and thank them for their confidence in you. This will soften them up for the next sentence…in which you say NO.

When saying NO it is important that you don’t go on and on as to why you can’t do something. You have your reasons and you want to stick to them and rattling on about why you are saying NO will only open up opportunities for the asker to convince you to say yes.

#3 – Don’t take a no to your NO. Many askers are professionals. They know how to make another person do what they need them to do. When you have decided not to do something stick to it. You will feel much better about yourself if you do. This can be a learning experience for both you and your kids: how to make a choice and stick to it, even in the face of push back.

#4 – Use email. I know this seems like a bit of a cop-out but really it’s the reason that email was invented…to deliver difficult news.

State your reasons for say NO clearly and decisively and offer no personal justifications or emotional commentary about this decision or anything else.

Your message will land and the asker will not be able to argue and will move on to ask someone else. And there is ALWAYS someone else to ask…

#5 – Reward yourself. Positive reinforcement is a really good thing. Of course, by saying NO you will have the positive reinforcement that you haven’t added one more thing to your plate but I think that it’s important that when you have done something good for yourself, you reward yourself.

So reward yourself for a job well done, saying NO. It can be little, like a wonderful piece of dark chocolate, or big, like a massage. Whatever it is that will make your heart sing.

You have done something very difficult and you should give yourself credit for a job well done.

So there you go…5 Pathways to Saying NO – And Not Even Feel Guilty Doing So.

Saying NO is not something that comes naturally to any of us but once you learn the value of doing so you will be well on your way to reaching the life of your dreams. Saying NO will help you not only not get overwhelmed but it will keep your time open for more important things.

And remember, if your kids see you saying NO in a clear, positive and respectful way they are more likely to do so themselves. This will set them up for success in the future, because they can set boundaries, something every mom wants for her child.

So really, it’s a two for one win. More time for you and a lesson learned for your kids. Well done, Mom!

Get in touch with me NOW for more ways to help your dreams come true!  You will be happy you did.

 

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

7 Things to Teach Your Kids Now so that They Won’t Drive You Crazy When They are Teenagers – Even if People Tell You that It’s Inevitable

I am on the other side of raising my kids. Well, mostly. Does it ever really end? Both of my kids are in college, are polite, kind, interesting and inquisitive, and I couldn’t be prouder of them.

The teenage years were tough, but not as tough as they could have been because of the things that we taught them when they were young.

Teaching these things really works. I watched my friends who didn’t teach them flounder during those difficult years and many wished they could go back and reinvent the wheel.

You won’t have to do that because here are 7 Things to Teach Your Kids Now so that They Won’t Drive You Crazy When They are Teenagers.

#1 – How to really listen. If you are going to take only one thing away from this blog post, take this. Listen to your kids and teach them how to listen to you.

Kids have a lot to say, much of it ramblings, but there is a lot of information coming out and if you aren’t listening then you are going to miss it. If you hear what they are saying then you can help, guide and support them with what they need, not what you think they need.

#2 – How to really talk. We adults tend to discount what children say and we shouldn’t. Let them talk and feel heard and when they are teenagers, and really need to talk, they will come to you.

Talk to your kids in a way that encourages them to listen to you and understand where you are coming from. If they understand you and trust you then they are way more likely to respect you when they are older.

#3 – That you have set fair boundaries and will stick to them. This is very important. If your kids learn early what their boundaries are, and that their parents will enforce them, they are less likely to push back when they are teenagers. Our kids were allowed one hour of screen time before homework. When that hour was up there was no arguing because they knew that if they argued there would be no screen time the next day. And we stuck to it. The habit of listening to their parents will be as much second nature as brushing their teeth.

#4 – Good habits. Again, instilling habits is about creating habits that are second nature. Make sure they eat breakfast, that they have some time outside everyday, that they treat the dog with love and respect. When they become self-centered teenagers the habits that they have learned in their childhood will stay with them.

#5 – Good behavior.  Another important one. We parents need to model good behavior. To this end we must follow “The Golden Rule”: do unto others as you would have others do unto you. If you are impatient with your kids or yell at your husband your kids will see your behavior and mimic it. The same with how you talk to people in the store, or on the phone, or at Christmas. If your kids see you being polite, respectful and friendly then they will be more likely to act them same way.

#6 – The value of free time. Everyone needs to learn what it is like to have some down time. Make sure that they have time every day for themselves and that they aren’t caught up in the maelstrom of modern life…excelling at sports, academics and social service. Yes, make that a part of their lives but also let them be kids. They will be adults soon enough and will have a lifetime of maelstrom.

#7 – The importance of reaching for their dreams. Kids have dreams and those dreams need to be encouraged and supported by their parents, even if those dreams seem out of reach or ridiculous to you. So instead of trying to “set them straight” about how life works, encourage their pie in the sky dreaming.

And let them fail to reach those dreams, if that is part of their journey. Children who only know success, or that their parents will fix everything, will never learn how to fail in life, how to bounce back and grow. They will just believe that everything will be handled and not reach out to the world with confidence and bravado.

So there you go. 7 Things to Teach Your Kids Now so that They Won’t Drive You Crazy When They are Teenagers.

I can promise you now that if you teach these things to your kids those teenage years will be easier. And those teenage years are years when Moms finally have the time to grow themselves. If you aren’t always focused on, and fighting with, your kids then you will have time, and energy, to reach out for your dreams.

And don’t forget- I can help you with that. Get in touch with me NOW and we can get your started. You will be glad you did!

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

7 Easy Steps to Get Rid of Stuff, Even if You Think that You Just Can’t Do It

We all have stuff. It’s just what Americans do. We collect stuff. Some of us have more of it than others and some of us have a harder time keeping that stuff under control.

Having too much stuff can cause a ton of stress.

There is an efficient way to get rid of all of that stress-inducing stuff, a few secrets of which I am going to share with you here today.

Here are 7 Easy Steps to get Rid of Stuff, Even if You Think that You Just Can’t Do It.

#1. Identify what room needs to be de-stuffed first. This is the key. If you look around the house and think “I need to get rid of ALL this stuff” you will get so overwhelmed that you will just go watch an episode of “Orange is the New Black” instead.

Choose one room. Any room. If you want to start small, do so. Like the mudroom or the laundry. Or even a dresser drawer. Actually completing the task of de-stuffing that room, or drawer, will make you feel so good that it will make you want to tackle a larger room next.

#2. Give yourself a good chunk of time to start and finish the project and make it a priority. This is key. You need to make a date with that room, one that you won’t break. If you try to do this “when you have time” well, you know. Most likely it just won’t happen.

#3. Set up your IPOD and your speakers. Throwing away is way easier when done to music. Get out your favorite playlist, put on some comfy clothes and get ready to get down to it.

#4. Start in one corner of the room. This is a huge secret and one that WORKS!

In the chosen corner of the room, garbage bag in hand, start throwing things away. Things that you aren’t using, that are broken, that are expired. Put them in that garbage bag. Things that you are still using and keeping get placed nicely back where they belong.

If you aren’t sure whether or not something needs to be thrown out, consider when the last time was that you touched that thing, or even thought about it. If it was over 3 months ago, it’s gone. Acknowledge and be thankful for the role that it played in your life and then say goodbye.

Work your way around the room, repeating this process over and over. Don’t skip ahead. Do all four sides of the room.

#5. Use the middle of the room. As you throw away the things that are broken and leave the things that aren’t, you will come across things that can be 1. recycled or 2. given to the Salvation Army. Put those thing in the middle of the room, in two piles. When you are done you can put the recycled stuff at the curb and you can call the Salvation Army to come pick up the rest.

NOTE: if this step is overwhelming just skip it and get a bigger garbage bag.

#6. Take a minute and look around. Stand in the doorway of that room. Appreciate how de-stuffed it is. Notice how it makes you feel. Less stressed? Recognize that YOU DID THIS. All by yourself.

If you can do this, just imagine what else you can do….

#7. Do not buy more stuff. I know this seems obvious but, really, it’s what we do. We go to Sam’s Club and think to ourselves “Oh, look. This croquet set is so cheap and summer is coming and we could play together as a family and…” The reality is that, maybe, it will get used once and then put away to gather dust.

Consider purchases carefully before making them. You will not only reduce your stress but you will save yourself money. Money that you can used for a massage or something else that will make your life a better place.

So there you are… 7 Easy Steps to get Rid of Stuff, Even if You Think that You Just Can’t Do It.

Getting rid of stuff can change your life. De-cluttering your house can de-clutter your mind, freeing it up for way more important things.

Like living the life of your dreams. Get in touch with me NOW to get yourself started. You will be glad you did!

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

5 Action Steps every Woman MUST Take to Reach Their Dreams, Even if a Million Things Get in the Way

Remember when you were little and you had your dreams for when you were a grown up? Personally, I wanted to be an astronaut. Or a ballerina. As we grow up those dreams evolve. My desire to be an astronaut or a ballerina fell by the wayside when I failed earth science and grew a foot. After college I did know that I wanted to write and to help people. I didn’t really know how to do that so I went into the hospitality business and then into retail sales and then became a mom. Suddenly I was 40 and a working mom and my dreams had disappeared under a load of laundry.

Now, 10 years later, I am living the life of my dreams. I write articles and blogs and coach moms towards reaching their dreams. I have learned a lot along the way and this I want to share with you today.

Here are 5 Actions Every Woman MUST Take Reach Their Dreams, Even if There are Million Excuses not to…

#1 – Be clear about what is important to you. I can’t say this enough. If you don’t know what is important to you then you can’t make it a priority. Instead your life will consist of day after day doing the things that you need to do to get by.

Do this. Mark out 1 hour on your calendar this week, one hour to still down with a cup of tea and write down everything that you can think of that is important to you. Write down the things that you do and things that you don’t. Set it aside and go pick up the kids from school.

A few days later revisit your list. Did you forget anything? Is there anything on there that maybe shouldn’t be?

Next, circle the top 10 most important things on your list. Then from that list circle the top 7 most important things, and then from that list circle the top 5 most important things. From your top 5 list circle the top 3 most important things.

You now have the top 3 things that are most important to you. See that wasn’t so hard.

#2 – Have a plan in place to make those 3 things a priority.  Make sure that plan is one that you are excited about. Making this plan is easiest when working with a life coach but you can do it yourself.

If exercise is priority build into your calendar a little bit of time three days a week to do so. Just a little bit. Maybe 15 minutes Then, a few weeks down the road build in a little more time. Slowly grow the time you exercise until you are doing it as much as you want to. The key is making time for it and making it a priority.

#3 – Surround yourself with a supportive and loving community. Your community can be made up of family, friends, co-workers, gym mates. Whoever can support you and hold you accountable. This is key to success. We all have good intentions but without support and accountability it’s hard to stay on the path to reaching our dreams.

#4 – Do NOT doubt yourself. This is the most self-sabotaging thing that we do. We listen to the voice in our head that tells us that we can’t do something. That we don’t have the time or that we aren’t good enough or that we don’t deserve something.

This is, may I say, complete bullshit. You are an amazing person, someone who gives and gives and you should have the life of your dreams. And if you are happy, everyone around you will be happy!

#5 – Take care of yourself and try to have a little fun. Yes our lives are crazy but it is essential that every mom take a little time for herself. Take a bath, go for a walk, go shopping with a friend, climb a mountain, learn to surf, take a road trip. Do something every day that feeds your soul. Take a day a month to do something you want to do.

And at least once a year get away, alone, to get to know yourself again.

So there you are…5 Actions Every Woman MUST Take to Reach Their Dreams, Even if There are Million Excuses not to…

 Remember, it’s never too late to live the life that you want. You just need to take that first step and decide what that life is. The rest you can do, easy.

Just look at all that you do now. Only Superwoman can do what you do every day. Your dreams will be a cinch… Get in touch with me NOW to get your started. You will be glad you did!

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!