Posts tagged expression

The Car – or – The Cash


I get by without a car. Doing so is sometimes problematic but not usually. It simply requires appropriate clothing for the weather, strength to carry everything, and planning for public transportation. So, imagine my gratitude and delight whenever my 84-year-old friend goes out of town for a few days or a week or more, and she loans me her car!

This time, however, she loaned it to her gardener, who has become a help to her in the off-season. My friend is a very kind woman, full of generosity and compassion. She “adopts” people as she did me. In this instance, she has chosen to extend her kindness on his behalf.

Borrowing my friend’s car is not my right; it is a privilege. And my having become accustomed to that privilege, I now feel disappointed, irritated, and jealous. I have been her friend for eight years and he, one year or less. Then again…to be honest…at one point several years ago, I limited our contact because our temperaments are quite different, and I found her unbearable.

Our renewed friendship now reflects a pleasantness. In addition to “coffee with the ladies” on Tuesday mornings, my friend and I visit once a month or so. She normally pays the entire bill. She even passes me some extra cash on occasion.

Who am I to get irritated? If I had to choose between the two gestures——car or cash——I would opt for the cash without hesitation. Nevertheless, my hurt feelings warrant expression. I choose to express my feelings to trusted others and keep the situation in perspective.

Perhaps a time will present itself when I will choose to share my feelings about the situation with my elderly friend. Perhaps hurt feelings will shift or fade. For now, I shall exercise GRACE and MAINTAIN gratitude.

If you desire a better way to cope with disappointment, anger, frustration, and other unpleasant emotions, please Contact me, Vanessa Landau, Resiliency Trainer, for Co-Creative Transformation–Resiliency Coaching–and I will guide you in adjusting yourself to the situation.

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Is That What You Said?!!


In relationship, when I do not listen to my inner voice, my hearing overall is not accurate. Accurate perception requires a clear filter.

What is accurate about our perceptions of others’ words and actions? At best, “accurate” means two or more persons agree on a particular idea or event. Yet even beyond that, individual persons probably associate different inferences and interpretations for themselves.

Why is accurate perception favorable or even important? We rely on other persons to be consistent in their words and actions so that we may build trust. And they in turn rely on us for the same. Moreover, cooperation warrants common agreement in what roles and responsibilities we assume as part of any group.

How do we create accurate perception? When people agree to address any issue(s), a technique can facilitate the process until it becomes habitual. First, take turns talking so that one person feels understood first then the next person has an opportunity to feel understood. Use “I” statements as much as possible, e.g., I feel, I think, I wish. Avoid reverting to old grievances unless the discussion is about a pattern.

  • Speaker: Tell the listener what you perceive of the words/actions. Check with the listener to verify the facts. Sort out the facts before continuing the dialogue. Express how you felt about the facts and the consequences. State what you needed or wanted from the listener or situation, and make a request that will resolve the solution or impact future situations/exchanges.
  • Listener: Put aside concerns for the moment and focus on the speaker. Employ tactics to elicit explanation–listening, inquiring, reflecting, clarifying, and summarizing. Even if the speaker expresses an outrageous claim, avoid reacting impulsively, knowing that you will have a turn to speak.

If difficult situations make it difficult to communicate and cooperate, you are part of the human race. You do have options! Contact Vanessa Landau, Resiliency Trainer, for Co-Creative Transformation (Resiliency Coaching) and I will help you navigate difficult situations and establish masterful communication habits.

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Freedom from Death


Emotional hurts have a way of making a lasting impression while all the big and little daily happiness-es can run like water through a fist.

I have been faced with hurts that have been difficult to clean up. One in particular was the loss of one of the great loves of my life. Losing my bearings and stalling on my life course, I became vigilant about preventing such vulnerability from happening again. So, I asked myself, “Self, if you found a loving partner and he leaves, would you regret allowing this person close enough to hurt you?” And Self hesitated.

Would anybody ever be worth that kind of power over me? The more interested I would be, the less willing I would be to take the risk. I would have my heart and mind trained to receive familiar signs of impending danger–red flags. However, with my heart and mind trained to notice every red flag, every possible joy would figure less prominently through that lens. That orientation would only lead me entertain the affections of someone whose hurtfulness would not mean much. This is a position of resiliency impairment, defeating the whole purpose of being in a relationship with someone whom I could love deeply and and who could love me deeply in return.

My only recourse from defeating my wish for another great love involved grieving the original loss and regaining my strength, or courage… and deliberately so. To grieve deliberately requires that I allow the thoughts and feelings where I resist letting go (grasp) to be expressed–thoughts, feelings, and physical discharge (crying, yelling, hitting pillows, etc.). To facilitate this, I need to allow someone else to witness my expression without judgment or personal commentary.

One way that I find helpful to guide the grief process involved Elizabeth Kubler-Ross’ model from her book, On Death And Dying–denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance. By focusing my attention on each stage, I have my say; whereas I had not had my say in the death of the great love. One way to gain perspective on the situation was to view it as a story: I called it “the loss of one of the great loves of my life.” I explained it as “he left me.” I described it as “heartbreaking,” saying “I absorbed the blow.” How else could I tell the story? The result of the call to grieve deliberately enabled me to release my resistance to the death of a dream.

Every grief is different between one person and the next and, for the same person, between one situation and the next. The time required to diminish the pain of grief likewise varies. If you are enduring a grief for a longer period than you would like, I can help. Contact me, Vanessa Landau, Resiliency Trainer, for Co-Creative Transformation–Resiliency Coaching–and I will accompany you along the way.

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