Source: Do YOU Want/Need a Life Coach?
Do YOU Want/Need a Life Coach?
By: Elizabeth Lewis: Life Coach/Relationship Coach/Author/Speaker
I get asked all the time, “Exactly what do you do with your clients?” or “Why do people hire you?” So, I decided to write a blog about this. The reasons for coaching are as different as my clients, but the common theme is that people want to move forward in some way in life or relationships. They are already successful/whole people but they want more joy, less stress, more fulfillment, more accountability, want to get more organized and/or help improving or to enhance relationships (dating, a romance, a family member, friends, etc). Some people just like learning new and different ways of thinking so getting a coach enhances their way of growing and BEing. As you move along in life, a great way to find out if you could benefit from working with me (or any Life Coach), is to take this quiz.
Answer yes or no to as many as pertain to where you are right now.
- Do you want more balance with work and home life?
- Do you need to think (and speak) more positively about yourself? About others? About life, in general?
- Would you like to move forward in a relationship?
- If you’re newly divorced, how to get whole first and know you’re ready before you navigate the dating world.
- If you’re dating, how to think about different perspectives in dating (especially if you’re dating the “next” time around). How to date off and online.
- If you’re in a relationship, how to keep moving forward.
- If you’re married, how to keep things positive and enriched?
- Do you need to be a more “On Purpose” Person throughout your day?
- Do you need to reorganize priorities after a big life event? (After retirement, empty nester, divorce, remarriage, etc.)
- Do you need to get more organized, de-clutter, find ways to get more energy?
- Do you need to strengthen your self-esteem, self-confidence or self-worth?
- Do you need more joy or happiness in your daily living?
- Do you need someone to keep you accountable with your goals and dreams? (With a little cheerleading to keep you pumped up!?)
- Would you like to be better at living in the present moment (and not in the past or future?)
- Would you like to improve your energy level, overall health and wellness through diet and exercise?
- Would you like to improve time management/ money management?
- Would you like to improve with parenting?
- Would you like a more spiritual life?
- Would you like to discover your passion and purpose?
If you answered YES to at least 3 of these, you could benefit GREATLY from hiring a life coach. If you choose me as your coach, I give a 15-min. free consultation to see if we’re a good fit for each other. If we are not, I have other life coaches to which I’d be happy to refer.
If you don’t live near me, no worries. I also coach over the phone, Skype or Facetime. You can still have a GREAT coaching experience over the phone.
I can coach anyone wanting to move forward in life; any age or stage in life. (I believe everyone needs a therapist and life coach. To learn the differences in the two, read to the end). My niche’ is working with people in any type of relationship. I LOVE my one-on-one clients because we can dive deep with events/thinking that pertains to THEM….
If you’d rather have a group experience, here are a few things I offer that you might want to take part….
- I host a Life, Love and Dating class. This is for any category of singleness (meaning not married; whether you’re in or out of a relationship). We meet every other week (Tues.—summers and holidays off). 85% of the time we discuss dating perspectives/issues. The other 15% we talk about different life issues. This is organized 100% on Facebook. $5.00 per class.
- I’m starting (Aug. 22) a class for couples (the group is called Connecting Couples). This is for married and engaged couples, as well as those in committed, serious relationship moving forward. Our 1st study will be Love and Respect and have that I have MANY other studies we’ll do. This is also organized on Facebook so let me know if you’d like me to add you. $5.00 per person per class.
- SYMBIS Assessment– This is for engaged couples. A survey is administered individually to each person and I will unpack a 15-page report with the couple together. It’s excellent and worth the investment and discussion of each topic.
NEW: If you’re part of a SMALL business (<40 employees) and you’d like to provide coaching for your employees, email me and I’ll send you a proposal. I will throw in ONE FREE speaking engagement to the GROUP if you purchase coaching for your employees and mention this blog.
What are the general differences between therapy and coaching? I’m glad you asked. See if you now understand the difference?
- Assumes the client needs healing.
- Roots in medicine, psychiatry.
- Works with people to achieve self-understanding and emotional healing.
- Focuses on feelings and past events.
- Explores the roots of problems.
- Works to bring unconscious into conscious.
- Works for internal resolution of pain to let go of old patterns.
- Assumes the client is whole.
- Roots in sports, work, family, business and personal growth venues.
- Works to move people to a higher level of functioning/thinking.
- Focuses on actions and the future.
- Focuses on solving problems.
- Works with the conscious mind.
- Works for external solutions to overcome barriers, learn new skills and ways of thinking and implements effective choices.
So, there you have it. Lots to process and you can decide if it’s worth investing in yourself to hire a coach. All my clients have had positive experiences/outcomes. I LOVE my clients and classes.
To find out more, go to http://www.loveandlaughterlifecoaching.com
From my website, you can email, find me on social media!
I love meeting new clients. Even if you’re still not sure, give me a call and we can discuss? If you know of someone else looking for a life coach/relationship coach, feel free to pass this along to them.
Psalm 37:4-14 NIV
4 Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
5 Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this:
6 He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun.
7 Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.
8 Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil.
9 For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.
10 A little while, and the wicked will be no more; though you look for them, they will not be found.
11 But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity.
12The wicked plot against the righteous and gnash their teeth at them;
13 but the Lord laughs at the wicked, for he knows their day is coming.
14 The wicked draw the sword and bend the bow to bring down the poor and needy, to slay those whose ways are upright.
How to Be More Successful in Life
By: Elizabeth B. Lewis- Life Coach/ Dating Consultant/ Author/ Speaker
As many of you know, I read a lot and love to share what I’ve read and learned. I know my friends who work full time can’t read as much as they’d like, so when I read things I think would resonate with others, I like to write about it. These ideas don’t only come from me, but I’ll also credit Simon Somlai, John Maxwell, Tai Lopez and Stephen Covey.
LIFE—such a short time we are here. Most people try to find ways to be more successful in work, relationships, etc. Here is a list of 15 ways I’ve gathered (through my reading and own experiences), that I think make one more successful in life.
- READ and always be willing to learn. Once we get out of school, some are happy to never crack a book again…. but one MAJOR way to keep growing, is to read. There are so many great ideas/authors out there. We don’t just “arrive” after reading a certain number of books. When I worked full time I couldn’t find (or make) the time to read much. In retirement, I can’t read fast enough. I love the tidbits I’m learning (and sharing). I find ways to apply the ideas with which I resonate.
- Network- whether in business, the dating world or just a person who likes to meet new/interesting people—get out there, meet and share. You’ll meet people that will add value to YOUR life; and you to THEIRS. We are all here on this earth in this small space at the same time. Why not meet (and help) as many as we can while we’re here?
- Make goals- a dear friend taught me to actually write down about 10 goals a year. It’s OK if you don’t master/accomplish them all (don’t beat yourself up over it) but you’re at least striving to hit them all. Each year I make 10 goals and accomplish 8-9 of them. They’re attainable and are focused on how I can help others, as well as my family and business.
- Get out of debt- if you’re out of debt, manage your resources well. No matter how much money we have, we are still to be good stewards of it. Don’t overspend. Live within (or below) your means. Don’t forget to give a portion away (a tithe, a charitable donation, etc).
- Wake up a little earlier each day. In 2014 the life expectancy was 78.6 years. We spend 25 years of that sleeping! If you awoke 1 hour earlier each day, that’s 365 extra hours which equals an extra 2 weeks per year. Maybe use that hour for personal development (devotional, reading, meditating, or exercising).
- Prioritize and plan- Look at your day and do the most important thing first. It’s crazy that the more we have to do, the more we accomplish. But it’s true. Make your list and git-r-dun.
- Diet and exercise – successful people are conscious about refueling their bodies with the food it needs. Exercise comes in all forms and as busy as successful people are, they seem to find a way to include at least a little exercise.
- Visualization- there are many books and videos about this.
Raise your frequency to positive thoughts as well as visualizing where you want to go. However you perceive yourself sets the state for your accomplishments.
- Sharpen your character- can we always improve here? Of course. Some earnestly improve while others talk a big talk. Our actions speak louder than our words. Set for yourself a list of standards that are important to you. Then figure out ways to LIVE these standards without wavering. Maybe find an accountability partner to help you (you can help your partner, as well) stay the course.
- Gratitude- I’ve written a whole blog on this one before. (Scroll down the page to find it). Those who truly live in the state of gratitude (however they so choose to practice this) are truly happier. You can’t live in self-pity while being grateful.
- Lift others up and add VALUE to people. This is what John Maxwell teaches in his book Intentional Living (Choosing a Life that Matters). My way of taking action with this is I have a reminder in my phone that goes off at 7:30 am that says, “Who can I add value to today?” At 9:00 p.m. I have another reminder that says, “How did I add value to others today.” This just makes me more intentional about thinking about how I can help others. Think of ways YOU can add value to others.
- Habit Stacking- this idea comes from Simon Somlai. Habit Stacking is the process of incrementally implementing new, powerful habits in your day-to-day life. These daily, high-leverage tasks will “stack up” over time which will in turn improve your “success-level.” (Habits like reading, networking, goal setting, serving, etc).
- Get a mentor. Mentors will encourage and accelerate your learning curve. Included can be books, seminars or a real life person. Tai Lopez talks about the law of 33%, which states that you should spend;
- 1/3 of your time with people below your level (the ones you mentor)
- 1/3 of your time with people on your level (close friends)
- 1/3 of your time with people above your level (mentors)
Maybe make a list of these people in your life and see how you’re doing with this.
- Spend time wisely. How often have you been on Facebook, a dating site, watching TV or playing a game and you look up and realize 2 hours have passed? That’s time you’ll never get back! Even adults have to put boundaries around our time to be more productive.
- Last, imagine your funeral. Stephen Covey gives us a great reminder.
In your mind’s eye, see yourself going to the funeral of a loved one. Picture yourself driving to the funeral parlor or chapel, parking the car, and getting out. As you walk inside the building, you notice the flowers, the soft organ music. You see the faces of friends and family you pass along the way. You feel the shared sorrow of losing, the joy of having known, that radiates from the hearts of the people there.
As you walk down to the front of the room and look inside the casket, you suddenly come face to face with yourself. This is your funeral, three years from today. All these people have come to honor you, to express feelings of love and appreciation for your life.
As you take a seat and wait for the services to begin, you look at the program in your hand. There are to be four speakers. The first is from your family, immediate and also extended —children, brothers, sisters, nephews, nieces, aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents who have come from all over the country to attend. The second speaker is one of your friends, someone who can give a sense of what you were as a person. The third speaker is from your work or profession. And the fourth is from your church or some community organization where you’ve been involved in service.
Now think deeply. What would you like each of these speakers to say about you and your life? What kind of husband, wife, father, or mother would like their words to reflect? What kind of son or daughter or cousin? What kind of friend? What kind of working associate?
What character would you like them to have seen in you? What contributions, what achievements would you want them to remember? Look carefully at the people around you. What difference would you like to have made in their lives? – 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
So, it’s good to every so often reflect and evaluate how you’re doing in this thing called life. Again, we’re only here for a VERY, VERY short time. We need to use all the talents we have been given (because God doesn’t need them in Heaven). Go forth, figure out your passions… and talents… and live your life to the fullest… engage.
** If you find you’d like a life coach to help you figure this out, check out my packages on my website and find one that fits you and your needs. http://www.loveandlaughterlifecoaching.com
How I Wrote My 1st Book
By: Elizabeth Lewis, Life Coach/Dating Consultant/Author/Speaker
*Picture is not actual book cover. We are working on that now. This is a sample.
First Date Next Mate (Perspectives in Dating the “Next” Time Around)
This is the title of my book. My first book. The information flowed out of me very quickly. I read for 2 hours a day and wrote for 3-5 hours a day, 6 days a week. I made this my full time job for 3.5 months. Because I didn’t have to do any extensive research…. I finished quickly.
I love to share what I learn. Whether you agree with the information or not, it’s fun to challenge your thinking and compare that with your experience, listen to different perspectives; embracing the ones that resonate with you and discarding the rest. Since I’ve retired (2014), and became a Life Coach/Dating Consultant (2014), I’ve read about 49 books about dating/relationships/love and about 36 books about coaching, spiritual matters, leadership, life and happiness (and I’m reading about 4-5 presently). For those who don’t know me, I’m a widow and didn’t choose to be single. I was amazed at how different dating was the 2nd time around. My book is filled with all that I’ve learned from reading these books, personal experience with dating the “next” time around, sermons heard, blogs read, experts interviewed on my radio show (Fall 2015), videos watched, and talking to thousands of singles/clients over the last 8 years.
Over half of America is divorced and single again. That’s a pretty big audience. This book answers basic “must knows” about the dating world the “next” time around (meaning divorced, widowed, 30+ and never married). It’s an easy-to-read book packed full of do’s, don’ts, pros and cons, and answers your pertinent questions about starting over in the single’s world. It will cover online and offline dating, different perspectives in dating and even teach you how to start a single’s group, if you’d like to do the same.
Mark your calendars for my Book Launch—October 12 at The Brick House. I’m also working on a Book Signing/Cocktail Party in Louisville for October 13 (location TBD). I’ll also go to Cincinnati, Lexington, Nashville, Chicago, Indianapolis (and any other location that requests) to either speak and/or hosting Book Signings/Cocktail Parties. I’ll send press releases to appear on TV shows and radio shows. Why not? All they can do is say no?? I hope you’ll come out and support my book publishing adventure! (If you’re married, you can buy one for a divorced/widowed friend? All are welcome). Watch Social Media for Book Launch details.
Other book details: This will be available on Amazon, Create Space, Barnes & Noble, Kindle, Apple iBooks, Google Play and Kobo.
$15.99 in paperback
$14.99 if you buy it from me personally! Yes, I’d love to sign it for you!
$8.99 in iBook
I’ll end with this funny, playful, rhyming words summary about First Date Next Mate that I did not use in any of my marketing…. but it was fun to write.
It’s not too late, to find your next mate – reinstate love; not hate. Don’t compensate, regulate or quantitate your next date. It’s important to participate with a good state (of mind) as you rate and evaluate, while you wait on your next mate of fate. You may meet be a classmate, a cheapskate, deadweight, roommate, playmate or blind date. Whether overweight, middle weight or underweight…. don’t make a mistake. Migrate toward just going on a great date without the irate evaluate. There’s lots to debate if you frustrate, so look at the great traits. Can you relate? Does this resonate? Oh, for heaven’s sake!
Hopefully this book will help you
- Evaluate your dating state
- Educate you about the single’s world
- Motivate you to move forward
- Integrate your thinking with your values
- Create the best you
- Increase your heart rate for love
- Communicate different perspectives in dating
- Activate what’s in you already
- Radiate the TRUE you
- Incorporate new ideas
- Acclimate you to the single’s world
- Calculate better decisions
- Navigate off or online dating
Hopefully this book will not;
- Mandate any hard truths
- Make you hibernate
Thanks to all those who have supported me in this endeavor (and for my father for helping me proofread!)
If you know of a group of singles in your area that would like to book me for speaking and/or a book signing/cocktail party, reach out to me at www.loveandlaughterlifecoaching.com.
Can Reading a Relationship Book Really Help You? By: Elizabeth Lewis, Life Coach/Dating Consultant/Author/Speaker http://www.loveandlaughterlifecoaching.com Can reading a relationship book really make you…
Can Reading a Relationship Book Really Help You?
By: Elizabeth Lewis, Life Coach/Dating Consultant/Author/Speaker
Can reading a relationship book really make your marriage or dating relationships better? Actually, reading alone, will not magically make any relationship better. BUT it might change your thinking or attitude and if you put into action the things you learn, you might actually move forward to a better place.
Let’s take marriage…. as you know, sometimes things get “routine” in a marriage. Sometimes you have to “mix” things up a bit. Whether you get ideas from a book or from something you see on TV, the important thing is that you follow through with ACTION.
A great idea I got from Larry James (professional speaker, author and relationship coach) was how to read a relationship book TOGETHER. He said,
“First of all, head for the local office supply store and buy two colored highlighters.
While YOU are reading it, mark the passages that are important to you with a bright YELLOW highlighter. Then give the book to your love partner requesting that he or she do the same, marking important passages as they read with a light BLUE highlighter.
Why? Because when there are areas in the book that are important to BOTH of you and the highlighters overlay, you will see GREEN. Yellow and blue make green. When you see green this time, it does not mean envy! Green means “Go!” It means these are the areas of the relationship that are important to both of you.
It is always a good idea to begin with areas that you agree upon. Knowing where you stand and what you both hold to be valuable to the relationship is a must. Some couples never stop long enough to consider how important this kind of information can be.
Next. . . take some time to carefully review the passages your partner has marked with their own color; make notes of what is important to him or her. These are the areas of the relationship that need your careful attention. Do your best to focus on what is important to you and to your partner. You need to know what is essential for your partner’s happiness and to care enough to do your best to provide it.
The next step is to openly and honestly discuss what you have read TOGETHER! What you cannot talk about keeps you stuck! Make a new agreement to talk about anything and everything all the time. Make it a promise you both keep. It may be one of the most difficult promises to keep, however the benefits are worth it.
Caution ~ Resist the urge to mark the passages you KNOW your love partner NEEDS to read. When the student is ready, the teacher appears! Let the teacher be the book. . . not you. Let your love partner read and get from the book what he or she needs to learn. It rarely helps to push your own stuff on someone else. It often only causes resentment or drives a person further away.”
** I’ll give you some good book suggestions as the end of this blog.**
What about singles? There are SO many dating/relationship books (and expensive programs) out there… can they really help you move forward? So many singles tell themselves a “story” in their head (a story which usually is not true) and they will look for evidence to validate these perceived truths. Through their experiences they also can get “stuck” in a way of thinking. Usually they get stuck with feelings of inadequacy, not being “enough” and overall think negatively about dating and what’s available to them. Reading a book with a different perspective makes one reflect/examine his/her ways of being and thinking. True, the entire book may not resonate with you BUT if you walk away with a few ideas from each book you read, you can put it all together and make the new way of thinking work for you.
I just wrote a book about dating the “Next” time around called First Date Next Mate (Perspectives in Dating the “Next” Time Around). This was written for those divorced (one or more times), widowed, or for those a little older and have not found love yet. This book (not out until September 2016) is very practical, filled with do’s, don’ts, pros, cons and tells much of what I’ve learned about dating again. It’s not just what I’ve learned personally, but I quote many authors/experts/therapists from the many books I’ve read and resonated. Some learnings came from blogs read, sermons heard, radio shows recorded, research found and from many of the clients/friends I’ve worked with for years. I’m hoping those who read it will take the parts that resonate with them and apply those to their dating life and discard (or come back to later) the rest.
Stay tuned for book signings and speaking engagements after my book launch (September 2016). If you’d like to learn more about my individual coaching (or group classes), visit my website at www.loveandlaughterlifecoaching.com to learn more.
Book suggestions for married couples to read TOGETHER.
- “The Five Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts” By Gary D Chapman
- “Couple Skills: Making Your Relationship Work” By Matthew McKay PhD and Patrick Fanning
- “The Relationship Cure: A 5 Step Guide to Strengthening Your Marriage, Family, and Friendships” By John Gottman
- “When the Past Is Present: Healing the Emotional Wounds that Sabotage our Relationships” By David Richo
- “47 Little Love Boosters For a Happy Marriage: Connect and Instantly Deepen Your Bond No Matter How Busy You Are” By Marko Petkovic
- Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires, The Respect He Desperately Needs By Dr. Emerson Eggerichs
- How We Love: Discover Your Love Style, Enhance Your Marriage By: Milan Yerkovich, Kay Yerkovich
- The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide for the Country’s Foremost Relationship Expert by John Gottman and Nan Silver.
- Communication in Marriage: How to Communicate with Your Spouse Without Frighting by Marcus and Ashley Kusi
- Boundries in Marriage by Dr. Henry Cloud
God and Your Life Purpose
By: Elizabeth B. Lewis, Life Coach/Dating Consultant/Author/Speaker
This is a risky blog because I’m going to talk about God. WAIT! Don’t stop reading yet. I know everyone does not have a faith and many are skeptical about God. WAIT! Read a little further. Some reading this might immediately swipe right and move to the next email, Facebook post, text. WAIT! Maybe you can glean something new from this and skip over the God talk. But…..why is that? Why do we sometimes turn off listening when God is mentioned? I think it might come from a bad childhood experience with church. OR as adults we see so many hypocritical people who claim to be “Christian” and then see other actions so our response is to rebuke God. Or maybe you heard someone say something critical about God and you said, “Yeah. I think I feel that way, too.” (When really you’re not sure, but it was just easier to believe what someone else believes). Or we are filled with “WHY” questions hoping God will answer and we don’t see or hear evidence of our asking. So we kind of put God on a back burner. I mean, you know He’s there for an emergency. And well….. you believe and all. But that’s about as far as it goes. There’s no real relationship and the questions are too many and overwhelming to explore it all. So much of it just doesn’t make sense. I mean, who has time, really? Right? (BTW- there’s no judgement with where you are—just an observation and a wondering I have). If you’re agnostic or an atheist—and you’re still with me. Keep reading.
I have a million thoughts running through my head about this and decided to just sit down and start writing about it. I‘ve been reading a book by Max Lucado called The Cure for the Common Life. Many thoughts stream from the reading of this book and will quote some of his work and mix it with my thoughts. (I highly recommend this book).
1 Corinthians 12:7 MSG says, “Each person is given something to do that shows who God is.” I ask myself… Am I doing this with my new career? I know I did with my last career. I feel like I am with this career but can I do more? Of course I can! How can I honor God with my next life adventure? Why is talking about spiritual things and God scary or risky for us? Even sometimes for me (and I consider myself a very spiritual person and am a leader in my church). I think it’s partly from fear that others may see us as a “Jesus freak.” Or maybe because we make human mistakes and others will point fingers and judge our actions. So we’d best not talk about our faith for fear of ridicule and harsh judgements. We think it’s best to “play it safe.” I’m not a Bible thumper and can’t quote you scripture (that’s just not my gift) but my faith is important to me. I truly try to be a better person every day and more like Jesus. Do I fail? I do. All the time. But I won’t quit trying. I DO have gifts of connecting others. Teaching. Motivating. Communicating. Organizing. Accepting. Loving. Full of positive energy. Etc. I need to use my own uniqueness to make a bigger deal about God. Every day. No matter my career.
Are you living your God given purpose? Max says, “Don’t worry about skills you don’t have. Don’t covet strengths others do have. Just extract your uniqueness.” All that we have belongs to Him. How are we giving back? Do you need to make a bigger deal about God? It’s a deep question I know, but I think it’s a good one to ask/examine.
As a Life Coach, clients ask, “How do I find my life purpose? What IS my life purpose?” It’s not something I can answer for them, but I do coach them by asking questions that makes them think about what it might be? I help them to overcome the gremlins in their heads and overcome shame so they can look through a different lens of what might be possible for them. (Yes, I’m not just a dating consultant. I DO have married folks, young and old, who seek and hire a life coach). J
I’ve been thinking lately about my next life adventure. I taught for 27 years (loved that career). Reared two amazing kids (definitely loved that job the best). I organize the largest single’s group in Louisville (fun friends and activities). I’m now a Life Coach/ Dating Consultant (love this career). I did a 13 week radio show (that was different and challenging). I host a Life, Love and Dating class every week (Love that group of people). I just wrote a book to help other singles dating again the “next” time around (it’s not out yet but excited for when it does come out). Now what???? In church a few weeks ago, as my head was bowed…. I felt something BUBBLING inside of me. I don’t know what it was. I just know I felt it. Like little butterflies tickling my stomach, inside my heart and on my lungs when I took a breath. That feeling starting leaking out of my eyes! I’m still not sure what it is. But it was there. Because of that, I’m listening; remaining open to what “it” could be. I realized there are two places I cry the most. For sure in church. Partly from being so grateful and so happy with where I am in my life and sometimes when memories of the past leak out onto my cheeks. Sometimes I’m just humbled. The other time is when I fall to my knees to pray. I don’t know what it is. There’s something about going to your knees. Have you tried that? Try it! See if you feel anything different?! It’s definitely humbling.
“You were born prepacked. God looked at your entire life, determined your assignment, and gave you the tools to do the job. No one wants to live out of someone else’s bag. Then why do we? Odds are, someone has urged a force fit into clothes not packed for you. You can do something no one else can do in a fashion no one else can do it,” said Max.
This book has made me think about so many things. I still feel something “BUBBLING” inside me. Do you feel something bubbling inside you? Do you need to go sit in a church, or a quiet place or fall to your knees and listen? Do you need to remain/become curious? Do you need to have a conversation with someone who will help you process? Do you need to be bold and rediscover more about God and what He meant for your life? You know, it’s okay to believe in God. It’s okay to even talk about it. It’s okay to question and not know all the answers. (I certainly don’t have all the answers). It’s not so okay to shove it down someone’s throat and try to make them believe the way you do. It’s not okay to judge others with where they are in their journey. It’s not okay to just blow it off and hope these wonderings about life will just go away. Maybe, just maybe God can help us navigate these life questions through conversations with others? Or reading? Or praying Or going to church? Maybe, just maybe God is eager to have more of a relationship with us? Maybe, just maybe we need to reexamine our belief system and take more accountability for it? Maybe, just maybe we need to figure out our life purpose and make sure we’re living with the gifts/tools we were given.
“God packed you on purpose. For a purpose.” (Max Lucado) What is your purpose? If you’re already living it—mentor someone else in your field and step it up when you can. If not, remain open and curious until you feel something bubbling inside of you!
BOOK UPDATE: All my edits are complete. It’ll hopefully be out in September. If you’d like me to speak and/or have a book signing in your city, please email me. Stay tuned here, on my website and/or on Facebook. Title: First Date Next Mate (Perspectives in Dating the “Next” Time Around).
By: Elizabeth Lewis
Life Coach, Dating Consultant (www.loveandlaughterlifecoaching.com)
As some of you know, I’ve decided to write a book about dating…..sharing what I’ve learned while being in the single’s world, as well as from reading and talking to clients/friends. It’s very different the 2nd time around (the audience for this book will be best for 40+ 2nd time arounders (or 3rd or 4th). I’ll occasionally share excerpts here.
When I speak to groups of people about on-line dating I explain that dating is like a Consignment Shop….
- When you walk in the consignment shop (on-line site) and look at all the racks of clothes (single people), your 1st thought is WOW. Look at all these clothes (men/women). So many choices. Surely I’ll find something (someone) I’ll like.
- As you start looking though the racks (people), you find that most don’t look like your style (your type). You might say, “No way! Oh gross! Not in a million years! Eww! No way would I EVER put that on my body!” (Translation- no way would I go out with that person. I’m not at ALL attracted. Really? No teeth? 15 fishing pictures, too tall/short/young/old, etc). We all have our preferences. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s a good thing we don’t all have or like the same look. Just remember that there is a human being behind that profile. They are all looking for love, like you.
- Every now and then we find one outfit that looks good. “Hmmmm….. I might try on that one.” (Translation— the wink, send a message, do you like me? I like you).
- We put that outfit over our arm and keep looking through the rack because we’re not sure how it’ll fit us (Translation- We have to keep looking and stay available because we’re not sure how that last item- person- will fit).
- Eventually we go try on the outfits. (Translation- I call this the meet-n- greet. When you go and meet for the 1st time). I suggest trying on (talking to) 3-4 at a time and not 19-20. It gets a little overwhelming if you try to juggle too many.
- We usually know right away if it is a good fit or not- if it’s not, we put it back on the rack. That outfit will fit someone else better. It’s a nice outfit. Just not good for me. (Translation- he/she wasn’t my type but he’ll/she’ll be a good fit for someone else).
- If we are not totally sure….“Well, I think this (outfit) looks OK on me… I’m not sure how it’d go with my shoes or purse (will he like my kids, will she fit into where I am with my life?) So we buy it and see how it looks over time. (Translation- Another date. Go out again and see how it feels to be with this new person. Are we in the same place in our lives?)
- Over time we see how well that outfit is made (Translation– upbringing/ baggage) Is it falling apart? Poorly made? (Translation- did his momma teach him manners. Did she learn lessons on how to be a sweet, kind lady?) Some are definitely better made than others, right? We usually like those that were made similar to us (common values, character, upbringing, etc).
- We see how we feel while wearing it (Translation- how we feel with him, how he treats us). Is it versatile in all seasons? (Observe through every season).
- We might need to resell that outfit to the shop because it didn’t look as good as you thought it did. Back to the rack because it’ll be good for someone. Still a nice outfit. (Translation- after dating him/her you see that he/she is a nice person but not going to be a forever match/fit).
- Each week, new clothes come in to the shop so it’s important to go back and look (Translation- always new divorced/ widowed/ available men/ women — stay on line and/ or stay out there. Stay available to be found).
- You might even try a different Consignment Shop…upscale, down home, best prices…. (Translation– different internet sites/ different offerings/ different people).
- You may ask…. “Why even shop? It’s SO much work. Most of the items are either junk or don’t fit right or are too old looking, etc. It takes forever to find just one item worth trying on.” (Translation: Why work so hard to find a good match)?
- The answer……because we eventually find that GOLDEN NUGGET/ GEM that fits JUST RIGHT! (The ONE. The one we can live with forever. It looks good on us. It’s well made. Looks good with our accessories and has lasted and looks good in every season).
- So…. it’s worth it because shopping (dating) is fun and the right outfit makes us feel good and the best ones last FOREVER! (If dating isn’t fun, you probably need to take a break).
So…if you’re really ready to date, keep your profile up until you go exclusive with someone. Don’t just join for a month and say, “Well, I tried that and didn’t meet anyone OR only met creeps!” Yes, you may meet some creeps or not nice people. STAY ON. The longer you do it the quicker you find out how to refine your matches and meets. You’ll just get better at reading people. Stay on, even years, as long as you’re at getting new meets/dates. It’s a great way to meet new people. It’s not the ONLY way, just one way to find others in your age range.
Alternatives to on-line dating will be in my book. Back to writing….
Resolutions or Goals? by: Elizabeth Lewis
Resolutions, huh? Do you make them? Keep them? Maybe you think this year, “I’m going to do this!” I’ve said it and heard it a thousand times.
I learned from a great friend to instead of making resolutions… make GOALS. Yearly goals. If you don’t hit them all, you don’t beat yourself up but you at least try and have something in which to strive. You can make them personal, professional, spiritual, parental, etc. Here are some ideas we could all add to our lists…..
- Be more kind to everyone you come in contact. Sometimes this is harder than you think. When someone is mean to you, it’s hard to kill them with kindness…. But when you do, it makes you feel better. Maybe a goal of saying 1 kind thing to someone NEW each day would be a good goal?
- Love yourself more. Women are famous for talking about all the body parts we don’t like (bellies, butt, boobs, legs, hair). Men, too– (losing hair, weight gain, look older). If you don’t like a feature, do what you can to change it. Truly, no one cares what you look like, anyway…..they care more about #1.
- Look for more opportunities to serve. There are ALWAYS opportunities to serve, but how many of us seize them? If you’re not sure where to look, try asking at your church (I assume there are MANY ways to serve there). Help a neighbor, a widow in need, a single mom with repairs, or an elderly man with mowing his lawn, help serve the homeless (I know of a few groups that do this weekly. I can connect you!). Thousands of ways we can serve. Maybe make a goal of 1 service project a month. Make it a family affair. Children who observe their parents serving become servants. If you’re lonely, get out of the house and serve.
- Do a better job of making boundaries. This can be in a friendship, with a family member or in a dating relationship. Gain more respect for yourself by drawing the line where you feel most comfortable. If they, in turn, respect you, your boundary will be honored.
- Read more books. We don’t have a problem reading social media for an hour or more each day. But what about a book that can pour knowledge/ enjoyment into your head? Whether this is fiction or non-fiction….. Both are stimulating, helps with stress, improves vocabulary and keeps your mind sharp. (I’m proud of my college-age son who has a goal of reading 1 book a month- on top of 19 hrs in college and running a business). This will take discipline and organization.
- Smiles are contagious. Smile more! When you make eye contact with someone, smile and say hi. I bet they’ll smile and say hi back.
- Pay it Forward. You hear about the person who pays the bill for the car behind them in the McDonalds line. Do that! Or think of another creative idea. Find ways to help others, expecting nothing in return. It will make you feel SOOOO good.
- I bet we all could think of a goal related to our cell phones. What is it for you? Maybe not checking it during a meeting or on a date, don’t text and drive, no texting at the dinner table, no more “serious conversations” over text. The list goes on. While cell phones are important to have these days, if we let it, they can get us in trouble.
- One Line a Day- a gift I gave family this year was a book called, “One Line a Day.” At the end of each day, write down one interesting fact, motivational saying, Bible verse that spoke to you, a lesson learned or just something for which you’re grateful. A journal is sometimes too time-consuming so many don’t do that anymore. But we can always write 1 line a day, right? At the end of the year, you’ll have a snippet of your year and when you’re gone from this Earth, there might be some wisdom in there for your kids/ family??? Neat idea.
- Make a list of all the things important to you. Whatever is on that list, compare that to your calendar (and/or checkbook) and see if you’re actually DOING the things that you claim are important??? Sometimes we SAY family is important, or hanging with a certain friend, or going to church….but how often do you actually DO these? So reflect on what’s important to you and find more ways to do THOSE things.
There’s something neat about saying goodbye to one year and starting a new one. I hope this new year is the new beginning you need – make it a great year—on purpose!!
To find out more about life coaching and what I do, visit my website at http://www.loveandlaughterlifecoaching.com.
Loneliness Over the Holidays
By: Elizabeth Lewis
The holidays can sometimes be tough for many….. especially (but not only) singles. If divorced or widowed, it’s one less person for which to buy. One less person in the house (Thanksgiving or) Christmas morning. Less party invites from your “couple” friends. Some have to share kids on those special days and being without your precious children on a holiday, is just tough. So, for some, it’s a sad time. What to do??? Here are a few ideas of things to think about (some of which have helped me through the years).
- Acknowledge your unhappiness/ loneliness……. grieve………and we don’t all grieve the same way so don’t compare to how others grieve. Loneliness CAN be a gift (if you allow it) because it moves you closer to God (or your higher being). Embrace that. Let it grow. Reflect. Listen. Many times, Jesus went to a lonely place to be with God. In Hebrew the word for lonely can be translated as solitude or dessert. Each day try to step toward a happier place.
- Serve others – whether it be homeless, volunteering, making handmade gifts for family or friends…. Get out of your head and “poor me” or victim frame of mind.
- Organize your own friend gatherings to have something in which to look forward (go out to dinner, the movies, happy hour drinks, a party, shopping, etc).
- Read a new book- preferably one that will stretch your thinking/ understanding about yourself. One that will make you reflect. There are SO many great self-help books out there.
- Instead of judging those around you (whether it be friends you observe dating or picking apart the men you meet or go out with)…. Turn inward and find ways you can improve YOU. Look for patterns in behavior that you want to examine. Hire a life coach (to move forward), a dating consultant (if you’re ready to date) or a therapist (to work through past issues).
- Get rid of toxic friendships……Look at the friends in which you hang out. You’re the average of the 5 people you hang out with most. Are they making you a better person? Are you making them be a better person? Raise the bar and weed out the ones who don’t support you or bring you down………..Some friends just come for a season or a random reason. They don’t all last forever.
- Learn to be open to new ways of thinking about meeting new people. Maybe examine how you think about dating (lots of perspectives out there). Maybe try on-line dating. Take a dating class where you can find a new support group and perhaps challenge your thinking. (I support people with all of these things).
- Make GOALS for the New Year. Not resolutions, but, just a list of goals you’d like to accomplish/ tackle in the New Year. Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t hit them all but it’s energizing to have new goals to achieve.
- Maybe start a small group at your church. A Bible study. A book talk group. A social coffee group. A prayer group? All of these are ways to reach out to others (who may be in your same place) to support and connect.
- You’ve heard this before (and it’s SO true) … live in daily gratitude. No matter how awful your circumstance, there is SO much to be thankful! Life itself, a home, clothes, living in a free country where we don’t dodge bullets daily (although I’m watching on TV about a shooting right now, so thankful NOW that I’m safe), having more than 1 pair of shoes, a full closet of clothes, heck—dry underwear. Read my blog about Gratitude to learn about gratitude rocks. (I’ll give you one, if you’d like).
- Exercise, dance, sing (even if you think you’re not good at these things). Just doing them helps release endorphins. I bet you’ll even catch yourself smiling. Maybe even laughing (even if it’s at yourself)!
- If you’re telling yourself a sad story…. “I don’t have anyone this holiday. Who will I kiss on NYE? I’m lonely. Nobody wants to have me be a 3rd I don’t get invited to all the big parties.” Change your story. You can have your story say anything you want it to say. You ARE ENOUGH and WORTHY of love. It’s just a lonely time right now and this, too, will pass. Walk through it with a positive attitude.
- Speaking of a positive attitude—every time you hear yourself complaining or being negative, recognize it and turn it into a positive statement. For example, “Look at that “in love” couple over there. Gross. Get a room.” Say, “How wonderful. I want that and love is on its way to find me.” It will make you feel better and put positivity out in the universe. Positive begets positive. Negative begets negative.
- Don’t get caught up in FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). Looking at Facebook and other social media, you look at everyone else’s HAPPY life and think, “Oh poor me! Look how HAPPY THEY are.” You have to know that everyone is fighting his/her own struggles but they just don’t post sad and bad on Facebook. (and if they do, you’ll end up “hiding” their posts because no one likes to read someone else’s negative comments).
- Work on your budget, clean a closet, clean up clutter…. you’ll feel like you’re taking control of your finances and surroundings.
- Forgive and pray- think of those you need to forgive. Mend broken fences. Ask God for forgiveness of your past transgressions. Of course, praying will always sooth a lonely heart because when it seems like everyone else has abandoned you, GOD will NEVER leave you. If you don’t feel Him close to you or that maybe He’s not listening, perhaps it’s YOU who has moved? The closer you get to Him, the better you can hear.
Merry Christmas! Happy New Year! Happy Life! Count your Blessings. We are only all here for just a FEW more minutes in the BIG picture, right? Make today (and tomorrow) a great day…. on purpose.