Saturday, October 31, 2009

Stressless Saturday


I was listening to an audio recording of a seminar on women in leadership today. The woman speaker said that as a child her mother often called her the ”b” word…bossy. Today many assertive, take charge, confident women are called another “b” word that is designed to “put them in their place.” The assertiveness that is never questioned in men (who are supposed to take charge) is not looked on favorably in women. Because we, as women, often have to put our natural leadership skills aside to play well with others, we sometimes give up our basic human rights. When I pull out the following list of rights and go over it with some of my female clients I can see their anxiety level rising. Sometimes they just can’t see themselves demanding fair treatment, and sometimes they just never realized that they could!

As a counselor I often tell clients that we teach people how to treat us. By standing up for our rights we show we respect ourselves and usually get respect from others. Sacrificing our rights usually results in teaching people to treat us badly.

I have the right to change my mind…about anything.
I have the right to make mistakes.
I have the right to be listened to and taken seriously.
I have the right to ask for what I want.
I have the right to think before I answer.
I have the right to say “That is unacceptable behavior…if you continue there will be consequences.”
I have the right to impose consequences on unacceptable behavior.
I have the right to feel angry (and any other emotion) as long as I don’t hurt others with my anger.
I have the right to make my own decisions, even when others don’t agree.
I have the right to ask for information.
I have the right to be left alone when I want to be left alone.
I have the right to say NO without feeling guilty.
I have the right to ignore the advice of others.

So, did you feel your anxiety level rising? Do you believe that these are rights that every human being has? If not, who told you that you didn’t have these rights? What happens when you try to assert yourself? If these rights are unfamiliar to you, start small. Begin by being assertive with a stranger in a non-threatening situation like asking your waitress to substitute something on the menu. Assertiveness is like a muscle. The more we use it, the better we get.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Fun Friday

On the first day God created the cow. God said: "You must go to field with the farmer all day long and suffer under the sun, have calves and give milk to support the farmer. I will give you a life span of sixty years."

The cow said: "That's a kind of a tough life you want me to live for sixty years. Let me have twenty years and I'll give back the other forty."

And God agreed. On the second day, God created the dog.

God said: "Sit all day by the door of your house and bark at anyone who comes in or walks past. I will give you a life span of twenty years."

The dog said: "That's too long to be barking. Give me ten years and I'll give back the other ten." So, with a sigh, God agreed.

On the third day, God created the monkey. God said: Entertain people, do monkey tricks, make them laugh. I'll give you a twenty year life span.

"Monkey said: "How boring, monkey tricks for twenty years? I don't think so. Dog gave you back ten, so that's what I'll do too, okay?"

And God agreed again. On the fourth day God created man. God said: "Eat, sleep, play, enjoy. Do nothing, just enjoy, enjoy. I'll give you twenty years."

Man said: "What? Only twenty years? No way man. Tell you what, I'll take my twenty, and the forty cow gave back, and the ten dog gave back and the ten monkey gave back. That makes eighty, okay?"

"Okay," said God. "You've got a deal."

So that is why for the first twenty years we eat, sleep, play, have sex, enjoy, and do nothing; for the next forty years we slave in the sun to support our family; for the next ten years we do monkey tricks to entertain our grandchildren; and for the last ten years we sit in front of the house and bark at everybody.

Life has now been explained. Any questions, ask Him.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Marriage Monday

How Well Do You Know Your Partner?

One of the most important features of successful couple relationships is the quality of the friendship. Do you know your partner's inner world? Take the quiz below and find out.

1. I can name my partner's best friends. yes no
2. I know what stresses my partner is currently facing. yes no
3. I know the names of some of the people who have been irritating my partner lately. yes no
4. I can tell you some of my partner's life dreams. yes no
5. I can tell you about my partner's basic philosophy of life. yes no
6. I can list the relatives my partner likes the least. yes no
7. I feel that my partner knows me pretty well. yes no
8. When we are apart, I often think fondly of my partner. yes no
9. I often touch or kiss my partner affectionately. yes no
10. My partner really respects me. yes no
11. There is fire and passion in this relationship. yes no
12. Romance is definitely still part of our relationship. yes no
13. My partner appreciates the things I do in this relationship. yes no
14. My partner generally likes my personality. yes no
15. Our sex life is mostly satisfying. yes no
16. At the end of the day my partner is glad to see me. yes no
17. My partner is one of my best friends. yes no
18. We just love talking to each other. yes no
19. There is lots of give and take (both people have influence) in our discussions. yes no
20. My partner listens respectfully, even when we disagree. yes no
21. My partner is usually a great help as a problem solver. yes no
22. We generally mesh well on basic values and goals in life. yes no

Your score:
15 or more yes answers: You have a lot of strength in your relationship. Congratulations!

8 to 14: This is a pivotal time in your relationship. There are many strengths you can build upon but there are also some weaknesses that need your attention.

7 or fewer: Your relationship may be in serious trouble. If this concerns you, you probably still value the relationship enough to try to get help.

This quiz highlights elements of what Dr. Gottman refers to as your "love map." In his workshops, Dr. Gottman discusses the step-by-step process of making sure that you nurture your friendship with your partner. In a survey of 200 couples attending a weekend workshop, Dr. Gottman found that the best predictor of passion and romance in a relationship guessed it...the quality of the friendship!
Check out for more information about marriage.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sunday's Quote of the Day

"We need to stop giving people excuses not to believe in God. You've probably heard the expression 'I believe in God, just not organized religion'. I don't think people would say that if the church truly lived like we are called to live." Francis Chan - Crazy Love

Friday, October 23, 2009

Fun Friday

How the world works lately...

  • If a man cuts his finger off while slicing salami at work, he blames the restaurant.

  • If you smoke three packs a day For 40 years and die of lung cancer, your family blames the tobacco company.

  • If your neighbor crashes into a tree while driving home drunk, he blames the bartender.

  • If your grandchildren are Brats without manners, you blame television.

  • If your friend is shot by a Deranged madman, you blame the gun manufacturer.

  • And if a crazed person breaks into the cockpit and tries to kill the pilot at 35,000 feet, and the passengers kill him instead, the mother of the crazed deceased blames the airline.
I must have lived too long to understand the world as it is anymore.

So, if I die while my body is parked in front of this computer,

I want all of you to blame Bill Gates.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Francis Chan - Balance Beam

I am reading Francis Chan's book Crazy Love. A great read...if you don't mind being convicted!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Sunday's Quote of the Day

"Our greatest fear as individuals and as a church should not be of failure but of succeeding at things in life that don't really matter." Tim Kizziar

Friday, October 16, 2009

Fun Friday


If you receive an email from the Department of Health telling you not to eat canned pork because of swine flu..............
Ignore it. It's just spam.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Sunday's Quote of the Day

"When the archer misses the mark, he turns and looks for the fault within himself. Failure to hit the bull's eye is never the fault of the target. To improve your aim - improve yourself." Gilbert Arland

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Stress Inventory

1. Give yourself 10 points if you feel that you have a supportive family around you.
2. Give your self 10 points if you actively pursue a hobby.
3. Give your self 10 points if you belong to some social or activity group that meets at least once a month (other than your family).
4. Give your self 15 points if you are within five pounds of your "ideal" body weight, considering yur height and bone structure.
5. Give your self 15 points if you practice some form of "deep relaxation" at least three times a week. Deep relaxation exercises include meditation, imagery, yoga, etc.
6. Give your self 5 points for each time you exercise 30 minutes or longer during the course of an average week.
7. Give your self 5 points for each nutritionally balanced and wholesome meal you consume during the course of an average week.
8. Give your self 5 points if you do something that you really enjoy which is "just for you" during the course of an average week.
9. Give your self 10 points if you have some place in your home that you can go in order to relax and/or be by yourself.
10. Give your self 10 points if you practice time management techniques in your daily life.
11. Subtract 10 points for each pack of cigarettes you smoke during the course of an average day.
12. Subtract 5 points for each evening during the course of an average week that you take any form of medication or chemical substance (including alcohol) to help you sleep.
13. Subtract 10 points for each day during the course of an average week that you consume any form of medication or chemical substance (including alcohol) to reduce your anxiety or just calm you down.
14. Subtract 5 points for each evening during the course of an average week that you bring work home: work that was meant to be done at your place of employment.

Now add your total score. If you scored in the 50-60 point range you probably have an adequate collection of coping strategies for most common sources of stress. However, the higher your score the greater your ability to cope with stress in a healthy way.