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Sorry (Not Sorry)!

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What are you apologizing for these days?

Let me guess.

Almost everything?

Most of us go through our days and ultimately our lives habitually apologizing. If you don’t think this applies to you, try the following experiment for a day or a week.

Become aware and take note of how often you apologize transactionally and for social reasons.

Social reasons reflect long held and often unconscious beliefs that have gone unquestioned our whole lives. Most social apologizing stems from our desire to be people pleasers, and women are especially prone to falling into this trap.

We apologize in advance for asking the waiter for a drink, the teacher to explain a concept more clearly, and to our child or husband for not having had enough time in the day to do an errand for them.

Clue: If you’re starting a sentence with “I’m sorry,” you’re apologizing.

Record how often you over-apologize. This looks like repeatedly beating yourself up and apologizing profusely when a simple I’m sorry suffices.

Clue: If you’ve actually made an error and have sincerely apologized for it, but you keep repeating the apology in different words externally and shaming yourself internally, you’re over-apologizing.

My client, Kathy, took me up on the invitation to engage in this experiment and here is a partial list of all the things she apologized for in a one week period. The complete list is too long to share but you’ll get the idea from this condensed version.

She wrote, “I apologized for:

  1. How I looked on Zoom.
  2. Needing to pass someone in the grocery aisle.
  3. Not responding to an email immediately.
  4. Not being able to be at my kid’s basketball game because I had to be at work.
  5. Having my phone off (my mental care hour) when my mother called.
  6. Making a clear and thoughtful decision to not invite a friend to my event and then framing it as a misunderstanding.
  7. Being tired due to not enough sleep.
  8. Crying.
  9. Laughing.
  10. Both talking “too much” and not talking “enough”.”

When we robotically apologize for everythingwe create the possibility of our real and heartfelt apologies sounding hollow and falling on deaf ears. The first time my client, Michelle, was late to our session, she apologized and I accepted. The second and third time this happened, I understood that tardiness and hollow apologies were patterns that were undermining Michelle’s ability to lead (herself, her family, and her business) effectively. In a Coaching relationship, this awareness is an opportunity for growth. In most other relationships, it only leads to resentment.

If a pattern shows up in one area of your life, it’s almost certainly showing up in every other arena as well. A person who is habitually late is not sorry for it, or else they would have changed the habit. This is a person who is fully aware of her tendency to be late and has consciously or unconsciously chosen to make whatever tradeoff comes with that way of living. 

People in our lives know and hopefully accept our habits. But robotically apologizing to others for habits we are choosing to keep, only diminishes their respect for us. And worse, it has us stepping out of our power to create new habits that serve and ultimately remove us from the apology loop.

Perhaps the most insidious effect of the apology habit is that it chips away at our ability to feel grounded and whole; the deep and profound feeling of being OK just the way we are in this moment, however human and imperfect we may be.

When we live life from the OK mindset, we become so much more light-hearted and spacious. We realize we are not broken, evil, and generally unworthy. We’re just human and kind of hilarious most of the time in our relentless effort to achieve perfection.

Finally, the most significant positive impact of reducing our apology footprint is that we are taken seriously and feel good from the inside out when we offer a real apology.

A real apology is what is required when we inadvertently hurt or cause difficulty, discomfort, and pain in someone else’s life. 

A real apology is what is required when we make a promise, an agreement, or contract and  then break it. 

A real apology is the only appropriate response when we don’t show up for our word.

And it’s just the first part of what is often an uncomfortable but much needed and potentially transformative conversation.

I’m sorry, and…..” 

It’s only after the word “and” we can create a space to go deeper into what is at the root of our inability to keep our word or uphold an agreement. This is the sacred space that we destroy when we throw around meaningless apologies like confetti at a wedding.

A real apology is the most powerful and impactful relationship life skill in our tool kit. It’s to be used sparingly if we want it to be effective in circumstances where only this tool will get the job done. When we deliberately stop apologizing for doing nothing wrong or being who we are and everything in between, we are sharpening our saw and preserving its power.

Nothing I can write brings the point home as poignantly as my client, Gabriella, did in her recent email to me which I share with her full permission.

Yesterday during my morning practice I took a moment to meditate upon the question “who do you want to be today?”

And the answer that emerged was “unapologetic.”

And so I lived the most unapologetic day of my life yesterday… and it was incredible. 

I experienced myself in a new and profound way. I experienced my interactions with people in a completely new way. 

I felt so energized. Probably because I was no longer wasting energy on being small. I felt like I embodied my body and my being. 

I felt the shift so deeply. People interacted with me differently. They respected me more. They connected with me more, and I with them. I was able to show up in my relationships and at my job as such a wonderful version of myself.

And I realized that it not only did me good, it also did good to those around me. 

I owned my feelings. Respected them. And myself. I trusted myself. I allowed myself to show up as myself in my interactions, and didn’t get caught up in the insecurities of “what will they think, etc.” This made me realize that a part of me is afraid to show itself sometimes. The part of me that is quirky, enthusiastic, loving, capable, the part of me that likes taking charge and being awesome. And I let myself be that person yesterday. 

I had no idea how much I have been apologizing every second of every day just for being me. 

Yesterday was a normal day. But it was one of the best days of my life.”

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Is Crypto Safe? What You Need to Know

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Is Crypto Safe? What You Need to Know

What You Need to Know About Crypto Security

The cryptocurrency market is booming with more new coins and startups than ever, but they’re not all created equal. Cryptocurrency is a trailblazing technology that could overhaul the financial systems of the future. However, it’s wise to do your homework before actively trading or investing in cryptocurrencies with price volatility and privacy concerns.

What Is A Cryptocurrency?

Digital money that makes use of cryptography to safeguard transactions and regulate the generation of new units is called Cryptocurrency. It’s called a cryptocurrency because it relies on cryptography’s encrypted form of data. Cryptography also provides anonymity for users by obscuring their identity and, indeed, all aspects of their transactions.

Cryptocurrencies can be mined, traded or used to purchase goods and services. A person would have to rely on already established relationships with merchants or banks to make purchases in the past. 

How Safe Is Cryptocurrency?

Cryptocurrency is more than an idea to create a digital form of currency at its core. Cybercriminals have learned that they can target these digital currencies because they are not regulated and not backed by any government. In theory, it’s tough to track down the source or the location of cryptocurrency transactions.

Cryptocurrencies are a prime target opening for cybercriminals since it’s difficult to trace transactions and identify the individuals involved.

How to Safeguard Your Cryptocurrencies

Cybersecurity in Cryptocurrency is a common issue and one that you should be aware of if considering an investment. Though the concerns are real, these problems can be mitigated mainly through a few simple security steps before trading or investing in Cryptocurrency.

Here are some basics steps to help secure your account from Cryptocurrency transactions:

Password Protection

Enable two-step authentication and password protect your computer when searching for cryptocurrency exchanges. This will prevent anyone from accessing your machines if they are stolen or hacked.

Use a Virtual Private Network

A virtual private network (VPN) is a computer network where you can hide your proper IP address. If a hacker were to try and break into your account, they would see an IP address from the VPN, so it would be impossible to gain access.

Backup Your Wallet

Backup information that includes public address and private keys. This will help you retrieve any lost currency or prevent others from transferring Cryptocurrency from your wallet.

Use Multiple Wallets

Using more than one Cryptocurrency wallet helps protect your investment from theft even if your account is compromised. If you have a cryptocurrency wallet on multiple devices and platforms, it’s easy to keep a backup of your information in case of an account breach.

What Are the Risks Associated with Cryptocurrency?

With all the blockchain talk about decentralization and anonymity, getting swept up in the hype is easy. Cryptocurrency has become a rapidly growing portion of the investing market, and many retail investors are looking to trade or invest in cryptocurrencies.

While the technology behind cryptocurrencies is impressive, risks are rushing, making trading and investing in Cryptocurrency risky for inexperienced traders. 

Phishing Scams

Phishing scams come in many forms, including emails and text messages. These scams can occur on an individual or a more general level, as most commonly happens. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) publishes information on detecting phishing scams. Still, it’s hard to tell the difference between a legitimate cryptocurrency exchange and an imposter because most large cryptocurrency exchanges do not have contact information listed for regulatory reasons.

Volatility

Cryptocurrency is a very volatile market that can swing wildly in either direction in almost no time at all. All cryptocurrencies are responsive to news, which can cause price changes within minutes or hours. There are also several different types of currencies, so you may have a hard time getting used to the volatility of each type. If you see only one digital currency (e.g., Bitcoin), it’s easy to assume stability when it’s still highly volatile.

Online Payments

While using crypto for online payments is a convenient method to pay for products and services, there are significant hazards involved with such transactions. When you pay for anything using bitcoin, you have no way of knowing the seller’s identity or having your payment details validated by a third party. You’re on your own if there’s an issue with the transaction.

With online purchases, you don’t have access to a complaint process, and there is no recourse if something goes wrong. This all results in anonymous transactions that pose risks online. As long as Cryptocurrency continues its rapid growth, this will be an iCryptocurrencyilers and sellers will need to solve.

Conclusion

Cryptocurrency is a highly sought-after currency for investors due to its untraceable nature and ability to exchange value without interference from a third party, such as a bank. However, this feature also makes it an appealing target for cybercriminals.

If you’re considering investing or trading in Cryptocurrency, educate yourself on the processes used to make transactions and invest your money safely and securely with reliable services that vet every transaction before letting it go through. Before diving in headfirst, make sure you research the different types of Cryptocurrency available and what risks are associated with each one. For more information on Cryptocurrency and its different types, visit our blog now!

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Where did the Zero Go?

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For as long as I can remember, I always looked around me, mainly at other boys, to get a sense of where I stood, of who I was.

It’s as if I had drawn a horizontal line with pluses on one side and minuses on the other and my position was the zero. There was that really cool kid, he was a plus, there was the dorky boy, he was a minus… At times being in the presence of pluses was inspiring but it was mostly threatening, because at that moment, it didn’t matter how many minuses existed or whether my “zero’ was pretty high up there, all I could see was a plus, and that made me the minus.

This applied to everything; from being good at sports to drawing or reading or the way I looked or how smart I was or how popular or cool I felt at any given moment. It wasn’t really about how I was feeling though, I could feel like a million bucks but if a plus walked in along any of the possible categories that I valued, my insecurities would immediately trigger.

I became really good at growing and repositioning my zero, or my reference point, and became a master at gauging others, categorizing and comparing. I didn’t just compare myself with the world, I was also comparing myself to different versions of myself…where was I at any given moment, compared to where I had been before, or where I could be, or even worse… where I should be.

As some of the things I valued started to loose importance, new ones came online. Having the coolest Star-wars set got traded for being liked by the most girls, having academic success got traded for being regarded as witty and successful, being the coolest got replaced by getting to be the kindest…and so it went.

Spiritual Ego

Then entered spirituality, the fix for all my struggles, or so I thought. It didn’t actually stop the comparison, because I turned it into the new playing field; The new standard where I got to measure and prove how special I was. There was a new flag to catch, and that was enlightenment.

I got really good at sustaining a very high level of consciousness, at being present, not judging people, being happy and all the things that came with paying close attention to my thoughts and emotions. I became particularly good at showing people how spiritual I was.

What a perfect solution… no more pluses to encounter because spirituality now trumped all. Someone could be successful and good looking and everything else that would make me feel less, but odds were they weren’t more spiritual than me; my spiritual zero was really up there. It felt like I had figured things out.

My sense of self was so invested in this new spiritual identity that I defended it with all I had. Seeing my attachment to it, was truly humbling.

Game Over

I realized taking the next step required the willingness to let go of my spiritual crutch. I had to come to terms with my addiction. My fix was the next high, amazing insight or awakening experience. In essence, not much different from looking for the next toy or business deal and believing it was going to make me happy. Accepting this, meant recognizing the fate of the game I was playing: no matter how meaningful it seemed at the time, no success had ever been enough, no amount of recognition or validation had ever ended my need for it, no spiritual high had ever quenched that thirst; I was an addict and it was never going to be enough.

As if just having been defeated for the millionth time at a video game and throwing the game controller on the floor, I felt the air sucked out of me and the engines behind that drive snuffing out. It wasn’t the bells and whistles of winning; it was the blinking “game-over“ sign on the screen.

A New Energy

Life started to take on a different flavor from that point on. The old energy of attaining comes and visits but it’s seen as an old friend that used to be so familiar and I’ve grown apart from. The zero seems to bubble up but it’s now seen as just a thought looking for friction and contrast to find its bearings.

Old dynamics still sometimes play themselves out, emotions still surface and I sometimes find myself reacting in the ways I used to. Now however, they seem to happen within a larger context and they are recognized as just temporary experiences not as things that define an “me” or a zero.

When these thoughts or emotions are happening in the absence of a reference point, there’s no separation between the experience and the experiencer. All that’s left, is a deep intimacy with life that moves through the world with an open heart and mind.

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Food Is Medicine And What We Eat Is Important

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Your mental state is a critical component of your physical health. And when you’re under a lot of stress, you might not be eating the healthy food that provides nutrients for fighting anxiety and depression. So when we examine what we’ve been eating, most of us discover that the decisions we’ve been making in the name of simplicity, convenience, or saving time have been damaging to our total health – body, mind, and spirit.

A person’s diet is a direct reflection of their health. When a person does not eat the right foods, their body breaks down. This can lead to an overall decrease in quality of life and many other diseases linked to improper nutrition. In North America, our current diet mainly consists of an excess of grain, sugar, fried and fatty foods. As a result, disorders including hypertension, diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer’s, and certain malignancies are becoming increasingly widespread.

The science of food has always been discussed; however, with recent technological innovations in food processing and agriculture, people have enjoyed more convenient foods that are less expensive than ever before. Unfortunately, with every convenience comes a trade-off. Smart foods are often packed with sugar, salt, and calories, leading to poor health in some individuals. 

To understand what a person is putting into their body, it’s essential to realize that the small molecules in food are responsible for allowing our bodies to function. These small molecules are called nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals, and enzymes. A nutrient is not a value unless absorbed by the body through a specific pathway. For example, if you absorb calcium without vitamin D, your body will not use that calcium. 

Eating a balanced diet keeps you healthy, but it helps reduce your stress. For example, eat foods rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants because they help augment your immune response and prevent toxins from damaging your cells. Vitamins A, C, and E serve as antioxidants that fight off free radicals in the body. Free radicals are toxic products of metabolism that cause damage to your cells. Experts claim that they are responsible for the aging process. Good sources of these vitamins are deeply-colored vegetables- green leafy, yellow, and orange vegetables, such as squash, broccoli, kale, spinach, and carrots.

Iron is one of the most abundant minerals in the body, and it mainly functions to deliver oxygen to your cells. Hence, an iron deficiency, medically termed Iron-deficiency anemia, is associated with weakness, easy fatigability, and pale skin. Tea, coffee, red wine, grapes, and berries are rich in antioxidants that function the same as your vitamins A, C, and E. 
You need a diet that’s healthy and balanced – and one that can fit comfortably into your busy lifestyle.

Here are some of the recommended dietary guidelines.

Eat a diet high in fresh vegetables, vitamins, and minerals. 

Exercise every other day to release endorphins, feel good, get the blood flowing, and reduce stress levels. 

Eat salt only when you need it, but not too much as your body does not need it. Many people with anxiety are hypothyroid or have low magnesium. When your body needs more sodium, it can indicate that you are not producing enough cortisol or are dehydrated. If you experience chronic anxiety, I recommend working with a physician to run tests on cortisol levels and then take salt supplements as needed. Use spices like turmeric, ginger, curry, and aromatic herbs like parsley, rosemary, sage, and basil.
Eat low-fat meals because they will cause a minor spike in blood sugar levels: think lean meats, eggs, vegetables, and nuts; avoid dairy if it makes you feel anxious. 

Drink lots of water — keep hydrated all day — ideally at least half a gallon if possible — your brain needs water to function optimally! 

Avoid foods that you know will make you feel bad, such as dairy, even with low-fat content. You can cut out dairy and not worry about it! 

Avoid sugar, caffeine, processed foods, alcohol, and any other substance that makes you feel bad or increases anxiety levels. Also, avoid coffee — drinking more than one cup a day can cause anxiety in some people. Coffee is also dehydrating and inhibits the absorption of minerals from food/water/supplements — try caffeinated water as a substitute for coffee if you like the caffeine kick. 

Find a natural health professional that you can talk to or work with to quickly get the results you want. 

Healthy foods and nutrition can help you stay fit, but they can also assist you in treating disease. When you nurture your body physically with these nutrient-dense foods, your mental capacities improve, as does your spiritual welfare. Moreover, because your spiritual health is at its best, it will radiate to the exterior world, causing others to notice you’re happier and more relaxed, and your stress levels have decreased dramatically.

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