Marla Tabaka https://marlatabaka.com Business Coach Fri, 16 Oct 2020 14:38:11 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.1 https://marlatabaka.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/cropped-M-Favicon-32x32.png Marla Tabaka https://marlatabaka.com 32 32 Here’s What to do When Negative Thoughts and Emotions Sneak Up on You https://marlatabaka.com/2020/10/13/heres-what-to-do-when-negative-thoughts-and-emotions-sneak-up-on-you/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=heres-what-to-do-when-negative-thoughts-and-emotions-sneak-up-on-you https://marlatabaka.com/2020/10/13/heres-what-to-do-when-negative-thoughts-and-emotions-sneak-up-on-you/#respond Tue, 13 Oct 2020 13:00:53 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=61141 “We’ve done our best to adjust to that awful thing that we’re calling ‘our new norm’. The adaptability of the human race does not, however, mean that we are thriving.” I am a hopeful, optimistic individual. I can find the silver lining in just about anything, or identify ways to cope, then thrive when handed […]

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“We’ve done our best to adjust to that awful thing that we’re calling ‘our new norm’.
The adaptability of the human race does not, however, mean that we are thriving.”

I am a hopeful, optimistic individual. I can find the silver lining in just about anything, or identify ways to cope, then thrive when handed a challenge or crisis. This quality is a part of what makes me a great coach since it allows me to help others to do the same.

But guess what? I’m human. I sometimes feel weary and negative, especially during this world-crisis brought on by Covid and our current state of politics. I can confidently say that most people are operating on a less predictable mood cycle nowadays. The turmoil that we’ve experienced in 2020 took us from an acute fight, flight, or freeze response to the chronic stress phase, which is where we are at now. We’ve done our best to adjust to that awful thing that we’re calling “our new norm.” The adaptability of the human race does not, however, mean that we are thriving.

Many people have come to me, not only feeling down but also experiencing things like shame and/or confusion about their mental (and often physical) state. Some individuals endure daily stressors; others are perplexed because, until now, they were managing just fine. I often hear people say that Covid hasn’t affected them much. So, they wonder why all of a sudden do I feel like this?

Between the political division in our country, concerns around the impact of climate change, and the global assault brought on by Covid, we are all climbing an uphill battle. Eventually, no matter how well you have managed the constant disruption to life as you know it, exhaustion sets in. Of course, you feel sad (or whatever it is that you feel). And you and your feelings are entirely normal.

Give yourself permission to feel.

Of course, you feel sad, angry, lonely, or whatever you are experiencing. Look what’s going on in the world; no one is immune to its effect. Acceptance is the first step toward changing your mental state. We need “permission” to feel. By acknowledging your feelings, you will push any guilt, shame, and confusion to the curb to make room for healing. Like a petulant child, when emotions are ignored, they only grow louder and become more difficult to tame.

Of course, you do!

Do you feel down? Of course, you do!

When I respond to my clients’ concerns about their emotional state with the magic words, of course, you do, a new awareness and acceptance sets in.  They always feel better by the end of our discussion for many reasons, including:

  • They now know that what they are going through is normal; they are not alone.
  • They’ve discovered what is at the core of their feelings; now, they can work through them.
  • It’s a relief to acknowledge negative feelings, rather than stuff them down.
  • The energy and motivation to affect change are more accessible.
  • There is an acknowledgment that they will feel better; this isn’t forever.
  • They feel safer.
  • Articulating their feelings and the consequences of them somehow frees them of the burden.
  • When appropriate, we create a plan to help them feel more empowered. Or, a plan to slow down to contemplate and nurture themselves.

If you are struggling with a myriad of emotions during this time (of course, you are!), seek out support. As little as one conversation with a coach or therapist can make a world of difference. Nurture yourself, because you deserve it.

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Growing a Small Business Can Be Hard, But Not Impossible–Even Now https://marlatabaka.com/2020/09/09/entrepreneurs-are-thriving-even-now-heres-why/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=entrepreneurs-are-thriving-even-now-heres-why Wed, 09 Sep 2020 14:50:23 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=61111 As if the normal challenges of growing a small business aren’t enough, 2020 ushered in an epidemic that has altered life and business as we know it. It’s left you exhausted, sometimes to the point of feeling slightly ill. Your positive energy may rebound here and there, but it’s not sustainable. Sometimes you feel like […]

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As if the normal challenges of growing a small business aren’t enough, 2020 ushered in an epidemic that has altered life and business as we know it.

It’s left you exhausted, sometimes to the point of feeling slightly ill.
Your positive energy may rebound here and there, but it’s not sustainable.
Sometimes you feel like you’re up against impossible odds.
And, you wonder, “What’s wrong with me?”

If you absorb nothing else in this post, take this in…

There is nothing wrong with you!

When the consequences of the pandemic set in most people experienced high levels of constant stress. Acute stress is brought on by situations ranging from threat to life to the intense pressure of an important event. In many cases, the adrenalin from acute stress gives us the energy we need to get through these times. When a high-stress situation is prolonged, like what’s happening around us now, the stress becomes chronic—and it’s exhausting. It may even affect your health, and it certainly reduces your energy, mental capacity, and drive. Growing a small business now may feel impossible.

What you are experiencing is a state of chronic stress, right along with the rest of the population.

Let’s get to the business of growing a small business.

Whether you are stuck due to stress or just in general, let’s join forces to do something about it. Let’s get your business working like a machine and your income to a point that money is not part of the stress equation.

Despite these times, all of my clients are thriving physically and emotionally. All but one are thriving financially, but he is on the fast track. Why? Because are learning to master their thought management skills. That’s right, it’s all about mindset, especially during times like these. It’s about shifting of the Bullsh*t in your head and becoming the badass that you’re meant to be. It’s time to BullShift™ with me!

About BullShift™ Group Coaching for Entrepreneurs

Group coaching for entrepreneursBullShift™ is a LIVE group coaching experience, not a canned program that you will never complete. AND, there will not be 100 people online with you. Nope, this is a small group of about 8-10 of your peers who are serious about making money and being happy…very exclusive!

Are you in? Are you willing to devote 6-months to becoming a better version of yourself and grow your business? How will it feel to wake up happy and filled with hope? I know what it feels like to avoid paying bills because you don’t want to look at the checking account. How will it feel to pay your bills with ease? Once you get those Bullsh*t stories out of your head and the building blocks for a thriving business in place there will be no stopping you!

Let’s do this. Apply to be a part of this group of entrepreneurs who will cheer you on and offer invaluable feedback, just as you will for them. I will be there each week to teach, support, and give you the nudges you need to get what you want out of life.

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Productivity Increases When Entrepreneurs Celebrate Small Wins https://marlatabaka.com/2020/09/04/productivity-increases-when-entrepreneurs-celebrate-small-wins/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=productivity-increases-when-entrepreneurs-celebrate-small-wins Fri, 04 Sep 2020 16:59:47 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=61103 What if I told you that acknowledging and celebrating your completed goals, you know, the small stuff, can boost your mood, energy, and productivity? “But Marla,” you might say, “Isn’t it a bit self-centered and a waste of time to celebrate the small stuff? Anyone can do these things.” Nope, none of that is true. If […]

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What if I told you that acknowledging and celebrating your completed goals, you know, the small stuff, can boost your mood, energy, and productivity?

“But Marla,” you might say, “Isn’t it a bit self-centered and a waste of time to celebrate the small stuff? Anyone can do these things.”

Nope, none of that is true.

If you work hard, never pausing to acknowledge the completion of your goals and other small wins, you are missing out on an opportunity to increase your productivity, mood, and energy levels. Let me make my point:

Which of these two entrepreneurs is more likely to succeed?

  1. The entrepreneur who takes time out of the day to reflect, appreciate, and share his or her achievements.
  2. The entrepreneur who dismisses small wins because, after all, the little stuff completes only a portion piece of the big picture–there’s so much more to do.

You guessed it: number one, the latter will burnout. Entrepreneurs who don’t celebrate themselves and their achievements tend to get depressed and negativity becomes omnipresent. Productive actions are overridden by meaningless time-suckers as they lose focus. Acknowledgment of your achievements helps to keep the focus and momentum. And, it will help you to feel good about yourself.

High-performance entrepreneurs don’t wait for milestone achievements to celebrate.

Think about the parent whose young child takes his first steps. Does the parent hold off on joyfully acknowledging him until he has walked his first mile? No, because one small step is a milestone. The family claps, laughs, encourages him, and tells everyone the exciting news. This reinforces the child’s commitment to walking and lets him know that he’s achieved something notable. It inspires and motivates him to do it again, even though it’s likely that he’s going to fall down quite a bit.

The acknowledgment of small accomplishments motivates and inspires us, and it also relieves stress. As big breakthroughs happen, they merit a celebration that is commensurate to their significance, but how often do these breakthroughs come along? It takes many small wins to add up to a milestone. If you neglect to acknowledge your productivity at all levels it may have a negative impact on your energy, attitude, and productivity, therefore your business.

Celebration and acknowledgment change your physiology.

Try this experiment:

Spend ten seconds thinking about all of the hard work you have to do. Feel the pressure mounting. Now notice your posture, is it strong and upright or slumped? Take note of how your body feels. Do you feel stressed out? How productive can you possibly be under these conditions?

Now, spend ten seconds mentally reviewing the things that you achieved over the past week, or month. Mindfully highlight the tasks that are off your plate and acknowledge how good it feels now that they’re done. Give yourself a pat on the back. Now how do you feel? You’re more likely to charge into your next steps with a good attitude and higher energy.

When we focus on the good stuff it sparks the reward circuitry of our brains. This causes a chain reaction as the brain releases chemicals that stimulate feelings of pride, excitement, and happiness. It makes us want to dig deeper into our next achievement.

Celebrations come in all shapes and sizes.

You complete a small project and it feels nice to finally have it done, but there’s another project that needs your attention. Who has time to celebrate?

A celebration of achievement doesn’t necessarily mean a party or treating yourself to a day off. Here are a few ways to acknowledge and appreciate your amazingness.

How to celebrate your small wins and productivity.

  • At the end of your day spend five to ten minutes reviewing everything you’ve completed from your list. Most likely, many of the things you’ve done weren’t even on your list so add them and flag them as complete. A visual of your accomplishments is very rewarding and will lend to a greater appreciation of your achievements.
  • Tell someone who understands the significance of small steps. Positive auditory feedback, along with a few verbal pats on the back, gives us a mini rush that helps buoy our motivation, therefore increasing productivity.
  • Let your mind wander to future images of your success. Painting this uplifting image will help your subconscious mind communicate your desires to the brain. This is important since a well-informed brain opens your eyes to opportunities and ideas that help get you what you want.
  • Acknowledge your wins by doing something a little different. I have a theory that we all need to put a little vacation in each and every day. This stimulates the brain’s reward center, helps us to celebrate our freedom as an entrepreneur, and energizes us.
  • Express gratitude for your achievements. Gratitude has a strong impact on your mind and body.
  • Thank those who contributed to your wins and spend a bit of time to think about the skills, commitment, and endurance it takes to achieve your goals.

You really do rock, ya know? Now, close your eyes, put a smile on your face, and count your blessings!

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Procrastination Making You Miserable? This is Just What You Need https://marlatabaka.com/2020/08/28/procrastination-making-you-miserable-this-is-just-what-you-need/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=procrastination-making-you-miserable-this-is-just-what-you-need Fri, 28 Aug 2020 14:31:36 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=61096 When you fully understand the reason(s) behind your procrastination, you’ll know exactly what to do to kick the habit. Entrepreneurs tend to get down on themselves for putting things off, so when a business owner develops a habit of procrastination, it will eventually damage the business–and the psyche. It’s worthwhile to get to the root […]

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When you fully understand the reason(s) behind your procrastination, you’ll know exactly what to do to kick the habit.

Entrepreneurs tend to get down on themselves for putting things off, so when a business owner develops a habit of procrastination, it will eventually damage the business–and the psyche. It’s worthwhile to get to the root of this problem, rather than steep in blame and shame.

You may believe you have a time management issue, but you’d be wrong–sort of. Procrastination does lead to time management issues, but that’s only a symptom of the bigger picture.

And, nope, it’s not laziness; some of my most ambitious, successful clients used to procrastinate (oh, and I’ve done my share of it too), so it’s not that.

What is procrastination? It’s usually a stress response, not a time management issue or a blasé faire attitude. We all know that being an entrepreneur can be stressful, and it gets even worse if you’re unclear and/or unhappy about your vision and goals.

Procrastination can get out of control.

Have you noticed that the longer you put something off, the more difficult it is to get it done? More things pile on, and you’re too deep to climb out before you know it. This results in something called the procrastination accumulation effect. The resulting stress may include feelings of inadequacy, guilt about what is left undone, and fear of failure.

Ok, Marla, I’m stressed out, and I procrastinate. Now what? I have one word for you: Clarity!

Do you know what your vision is? Are you confident about its viability? Do you have a step-by-step plan to achieve your goals? If you don’t know where you’re going, you can’t possibly get there. Of course, you will get lost in some form of procrastination. You may engage in busy work and not use your time efficiently. Odds are, if you haven’t gotten really clear on your vision, model, strategy, values, and passion by now, you probably won’t. Not until you get qualified help (raising my hand!) to create clarity and a plan.

Procrastination may be a sign that you hate what you do.

One of the leading causes of stress in entrepreneurs is a lack of money, which means they believe they can’t afford hiring or outsourcing. You’ve taken on so much of the work required to keep the business going that you don’t have the time to grow your business. It’s frustrating that you procrastinate on this tedious work because it’s not what you were born to do. It would help if you had clarity here too.

In reality, the savings that you associate with doing the work yourself is an illusion. If you had an extra 20-hours a week to work on growth, could you increase your revenue? Sure, you could. Spend your time focusing on the work that drives profits, and you’ll be able to bankroll a part-time person before long.

Self-doubt and fear lead to procrastinative habits.

Fear is at the root of stress-related behavior, including procrastination. If you didn’t have anxiety (or perhaps subconscious worries), you would have already achieved your vision or gotten close to it by now, right?

Imposter Syndrome feeds procrastination.

Many entrepreneurs suffer from Imposter Syndrome. Therefore, they procrastinate because it wards off any risk of being exposed to the negative consequences that they perceive as inevitable. Again, this is common and normal–there is nothing wrong with you.

Fortunately, the stigma associated with therapy and coaching has finally shifted. Entrepreneurs understand that they should not be on their journey alone. Whether you work with a coach and/or a therapist, your odds of success will exponentially increase once you believe in yourself and your vision. Let’s get to work!

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How to Stop Negative Thinking. Oh Yes, You Can https://marlatabaka.com/2020/06/25/how-to-stop-negative-thinking-oh-yes-you-can/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=how-to-stop-negative-thinking-oh-yes-you-can Thu, 25 Jun 2020 13:56:24 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=61032 Persistent negative thinking is the soundtrack of a harsh inner critic that won’t shut up. It’s an endless loop of chatter; it makes you anxious and zaps your confidence. Why does it sometimes feel so much easier to walk the path of doubt and negativity, rather than be positive and confident? The bad news is that our […]

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Persistent negative thinking is the soundtrack of a harsh inner critic that won’t shut up. It’s an endless loop of chatter; it makes you anxious and zaps your confidence.

Why does it sometimes feel so much easier to walk the path of doubt and negativity, rather than be positive and confident?

The bad news is that our brains are predisposed to negative thinking, and we are more inclined to engage deeply with the resulting emotions. It feels like there’s not much to positive emotions because they tell you that everything is okay, so there is no need to think about them for very long. Sad, but true, it’s easier to preoccupy the brain with negative thoughts.

“Wait a minute,” you’re probably thinking. “You mean I have to deal with these nagging voices in my head forever?”

The answer is yes–and no.

It is possible to get your bullsh!t thoughts (because that’s what they are) under control. It takes discipline to challenge your negative thoughts and form new habits, but it will change your life. It will also make your business more profitable.

I call it BullShifting!

Here are a few tips that you’ll learn in my BullShift™ Group. If you’re a solopreneur who knows your business can be more, but you keep getting stuck, this group is for you.

For now, carve out a few minutes here and there to begin forming these habits. And then, tell me about your success–and challenges!

Separate the B.S. from reality.

One negative incident can override a dozen (ok, a hundred) positive achievements. You have many client success stories, but when one client judges you, all of those achievements go out the window. You’ll question yourself, rehash the event, dwell on what you should have done differently, and beat yourself up for it.

Stop!

Start doing this instead: keep a diary of your wins. Put emails from happy customers in a folder for quick access. Entrepreneurs forget their achievements easily, mostly because they don’t take time to celebrate them. The next time you doubt yourself go read about all of the things that you have done right. You are a Rockstar, and don’t forget it!

Disrupt the loop of negative thinking.

If you spend a good portion of your day thinking trash about yourself and the world around you it will rule your life. Your brain is a computer, and it’s up to you to program it. Your negative life experiences have programmed your brain to produce draining loops of unpleasant thoughts. It’s automatic and feels easier and more natural than thinking good thoughts, especially about yourself.

There are so many ways to reprogram your brain; my favorite is EFT tapping, and you’ll get plenty of that when you join the BullShift™ group. For now, begin to physically change your state when the head trash starts talking.

It can look like going for a walk or run or watching comedy for a good laugh. Or, (and this one is crazy-sounding) get your butt up out of the chair and pace the room repeating positive affirmations—loudly. Stand tall and accentuate your words. Shout it out!

I AM strong, smart, and UNSTOPPABLE!
I’m DAMN good at my work; I’m AMAZING!
No one else can tell me how to feel, I ROCK and I KNOW IT.

Go ahead; no one’s around. Give it a try!

Kick catastrophic thinking to the curb.

Oh, how quickly the mind travels down the path of destruction! How often have you felt down or panicked about something that didn’t end up as bad as you thought it would be? When your thoughts get out of control–imaging disaster over a positive outcome–ask yourself if these imaginary events are absolutely, positively true. The answer is usually no.

Find the good in the bad.

The goal is to stop your magical negative thinking when something goes wrong, so this may sound counterintuitive. I want you to think about the worst-case scenario. I’ve been forced to use this strategy many times in life, as I’m sure many of us have. Typically, even an outcome we dread isn’t as bad in real life as it is in our fantasy world. In fact, during some of the most devastating times in my life, I’ve conquered negative thoughts by finding good in the bad when I faced the worst-case scenario.

When your fear is larger than you are, it makes all things impossible. Stand up to your internal bully and look at the truest facts (not your negative magical thinking), ask for help, and be kind to yourself. Your world will be a much better place.

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In the Words of Pink, It Hurts to be Human (During a Pandemic) https://marlatabaka.com/2020/05/18/in-the-words-of-pink-it-hurts-to-be-human-during-a-pandemic/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=in-the-words-of-pink-it-hurts-to-be-human-during-a-pandemic Mon, 18 May 2020 19:49:48 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=60994 I had a birthday in April, which I pretty much spent alone. In the weeks prior, I occasionally thought about how odd it will be to forego the usual birthday traditions. Would I be lonely? Perhaps, but I was determined to have a lovely birthday, so I did what any outdoor-loving person would do—I prayed […]

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Birthday aloneI had a birthday in April, which I pretty much spent alone. In the weeks prior, I occasionally thought about how odd it will be to forego the usual birthday traditions. Would I be lonely? Perhaps, but I was determined to have a lovely birthday, so I did what any outdoor-loving person would do—I prayed for a warm, sunny day.

The Universe delivered, mostly. I guess I wasn’t specific enough in my weather-related request. I got my sunny, 50-degree day, but with winds that made it feel more like a chilly 35.

Still, from the inside of my home, I was able to enjoy the warm caress of the sun all afternoon long. It turned out to be a lovely birthday, with friends who stood on my front lawn bearing gifts of flowers, balloons, sweet local honey, and a delicious dinner.

Soon after my birthday, along came a rainy, windy, cold Mother’s Day. Ok, I have some mad mindset skills, but come on. Two special days, only a couple weeks apart, that I (along with many other moms of adult children) would spend cooped up and alone? Really?

Again, I shifted my mindset and felt fine about “celebrating” the day all by myself. Or, at least I thought so.

It wasn’t until dinner time on Mother’s Day (I made a delicious lasagna and salad) that the loneliness set in. I decided to voice text my daughter and as I began to speak my voice broke. As though some unknown force took over my emotions, a torrent of tears flooded my eyes, ending up in a mushy mess of mascara that ran down my burning cheeks. What the heck? I seriously didn’t know how much emotion I had suppressed. I cried, tapped, and let it out for a few minutes and then I was fine. Thank you, EFT!

There was something to learn from this sudden outburst of emotion, so I did a little internal exploration. Sure enough, a mild Ah-Ha moment came along as I thought about the nature of stress and its effects on the mind.

When the reality of a pandemic hit this country, we were all thrown into a state of acute stress. This is when the survival instinct kicks in because of what our brain believes is an immediate threat to our safety. Extreme reactions are involved, (thus the toilet paper rampage) including heightened anxiety about where we’ve been and who we’ve been exposed to. Will everyone we love survive this virus? Will the world ever be the same? Am I already infected?

Since that initial shock, most of us have transitioned from acute stress to the chronic stress phase: fewer extreme responses, but consistent underlying tension. Most of us know about the physical toll this can take on our bodies, but you may not be quite as aware of the mental toll. Chronic stress can cause certain physical and emotional responses that seem to come out of left field, like what happened to me on Mother’s Day. When symptoms of stress display themselves, it can be confusing.

Acknowledge your chronic stress.

Just last week one of my clients told me that since he’s healthy and his income has remained unaffected, he had no right to complain. Was he right to feel guilt and shame for being down?

Not at all. He has every right to his feelings. We all need to put a voice to our fears.

  • No matter how well you’re doing under our current circumstances, your world has changed. Like the rest of us, you have no way of predicting if and when life as you know it will be restored.

Repeat after me: “Of course, I am stressed!”

  • Tell your mind and body that it’s ok that you’re not at 100 percent right now. The fact that others are worse off than you are should not diminish your concerns and fears.  To remain healthy, everyone needs to access and experience their unhappy emotions.
  • Let go of any guilt or resistance to experiencing whatever it is that you feel. Spend time taking care of yourself during your trek into unchartered territory.
  • Most of the world has slowed down, so it’s ok to lower your expectations for a little while. Take breaks. Go for a bike ride or take a walk in the middle of the day. As a result, you’ll feel better and be more productive.
  • Add some nurturing activities to your day. Listen to a guided meditation at bedtime. Keep a journal to help you explore your thoughts and stress responses.

As they say, we are in this together, and in many ways that’s true. People around the entire globe are experiencing a life that’s much different than they could have ever predicted. The inability to concentrate, sleepless nights, fatigue, and everything from sadness to anger are all a part of being human and “in this together.”

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Are Your Thoughts Driving You Crazy Right Now? How to Minimize Fearful Thinking https://marlatabaka.com/2020/04/09/how-to-minimize-fearful-thinking-during-trying-times/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=how-to-minimize-fearful-thinking-during-trying-times Thu, 09 Apr 2020 14:32:21 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=60941 Last Friday, I made a quick stop at the grocery store. While I entered the store with no intention of stocking up on hand sanitizer, bottled water, soap, or toilet paper, I could have easily gotten sucked into the frenzy in the cleaning supplies aisle. The signs reading, “Limit of 1 per customer,” made my […]

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Last Friday, I made a quick stop at the grocery store. While I entered the store with no intention of stocking up on hand sanitizer, bottled water, soap, or toilet paper, I could have easily gotten sucked into the frenzy in the cleaning supplies aisle. The signs reading, “Limit of 1 per customer,” made my heart leap as I began to question my lack of fear. Why aren’t I stocking up on enough toilet paper to last a lifetime? What’s wrong with me?

As a life coach and a self-professed neuroscience junky, I’m fortunate to have an understanding of how the brain works, as well as the tools to redirect my fearful, anxious thoughts. I knew that I was falling into the bandwagon effect of fear-based cognitive bias that’s spreading at an alarmingly faster rate than the virus itself.

I’m not saying that we have no reason for concern. For some, it’s challenging to avoid cognitive bias (the very normal and common tendency to overemphasize things that are recent and very vivid) because they are not slowing down to look at the real facts surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic. Anyone’s imagination can run wild in situations like these.

Hey, it’s no one’s fault; this is how the brain functions. My point here is that we can shift our perspective and lower the stress that’s related to catastrophic thinking. Remember, excessive stress weakens the immune system, so it’s crucial that you take the time to address your anxious thoughts and feelings.

One way to do this is to slow down and recognize the whole truth, rather than focusing on only the negative aspects. Again, the brain quickly jumps on the train to spread negativity far and wide, and it takes a bit of work to direct that train to higher ground.

Examples of fear-based thinking and how to manage it:

If you hear, say, or think something like,

“They’re saying that Coronavirus is going infect nearly all us; the world is changing, and it’s scary.” (Feel your fear and anxiety mounting.)

Add more facts to your statement like,

“We know that a great majority of those infected are recovering. Many are experiencing few if any, symptoms.”

Here’s another:

“I’m afraid that if I don’t stock up on things, the stores will run out. What if I can’t get my x,y,z?”

Add more facts:

The essential businesses, like grocery stores, will not shut down. Supplies will continue to come in. People who purchased 26 jumbo packs of mega roll toilet paper and a deep freezer’s worth of frozen meats and vegetables won’t go through it for a long time, so purchasing will slow down.

And then there’s this:

“There aren’t enough tests. Everyone needs to be tested; that’s the only thing that will stop the spread.”

Add this thought:

Confirming that someone has the virus changes nothing; the treatment for unfavorable lung conditions remains the same. Anyone who is ill, whether or not it’s Covid-19, needs to stay home or receive medical attention if (and that’s a big if) their conditions worsen. All of us don’t need to be tested. (This is not only my opinion; doctors and researchers say the same thing.)

If your thoughts are telling you this:

“My investments are dwindling. I fear that, soon, there won’t be anything left! What am I going to do?”

Consider this:

The stock market historically rebounds. Your investments are long-term. Today your stocks are down, and soon they will rally.

When your brain jumps on the negative-thinking bandwagon, imagine a stop sign and divert your attention by doing something physical. Jump up and down, dance, turn on an exercise video, and follow along. Breaking the cycle of negativity is imperative to healing the mind. In the moment, it may feel difficult, but it’s so incredibly easy once you change tracks. If you have to do it 50 times a day, it’s worth it. Soon, your brain will catch on and slow down the negative soundtracks.

Have you ever used or heard of the Emotional Freedom Techniques, aka EFT and Tapping? I call this tool my Secret Weapon because it’s just that powerful. While EFT is considered a self-help tool, working with a skilled practitioner is far more effective, especially with your more significant stressors. Contact me to talk about how I can help!

The post Are Your Thoughts Driving You Crazy Right Now? How to Minimize Fearful Thinking appeared first on Marla Tabaka.

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That Heart-Wrenching Emotion You’re Feeling? It’s Grief https://marlatabaka.com/2020/04/01/that-heart-wrenching-emotion-youre-feeling-its-grief/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=that-heart-wrenching-emotion-youre-feeling-its-grief Wed, 01 Apr 2020 20:32:05 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=60922 How to handle your complex emotions during the Covid-19 outbreak. Now is the time to grow–as a human being and an entrepreneur. What emotions do you have going on? What have I missed from this list to the left? As if the pandemic itself isn’t enough to deal with, the emotions associated with these times […]

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How to handle your complex emotions during the Covid-19 outbreak.

Now is the time to grow–as a human being and an entrepreneur.

What emotions do you have going on? What have I missed from this list to the left?

As if the pandemic itself isn’t enough to deal with, the emotions associated with these times add a whole different dimension.

Pandemics only happen in the movies.

The end of life as we know it isn’t supposed to happen until an impossible-to-imagine futuristic date.

All of this is foreign—to every human being on the planet.

It only makes sense that along with the unknowns of this “flu” epidemic, you would have many emotions that feel just as mysterious.

People are feeling things they’ve never before felt at such egregious depths. It’s difficult to understand some of these emotions, and even more difficult to figure out how to manage them

One day, you think you’ve made it over the proverbial emotional hump.

Yet, the next morning you wake up feeling even more anxious than you were last week.

What’s up with that?

Well, that’s just how grief works. Yes, I said grief. We tend to associate grief with death, but grief is really about loss. And, the world has lost so much. Not only have we lost people we love and/or admire, we’ve lost things we’ve come to depend on and expect.

    • The familiarity of routine.
    • The closeness of friends and family.
    • The opportunity to keep your business on track to reach your vision.
    • Social activities.
    • The luxury and convenience of dining out.
    • Travel.
    • Enjoying local activities.
    • The chance to celebrate holidays in traditional ways.
    • A sense of control of our daily lives and our future.
    • And, everything that this list is missing for you.

Of course, you are grieving! Yet, instead of hearing, “Marla, I’m grieving, and I want to figure out how to process and honor that.”

I hear, “I should not feel this bad; others have it so much worse than I do.” And, “I wish I could be stronger.”

I hear guilt and shame associated with what is only natural and to be expected at this time—grief. The right to grieve is not hidden away in some kind of elusive shelter, only to be accessed by those who have lost a loved one. Today, the right to grieve is for you. It is for everyone.

Emotions don’t make you weak, they make you human.

Processing your grief begins with permission. No matter what your situation, it’s ok to take some downtime to recognize and eventually heal from your emotions.

Minimize your guilt as much as possible by knowing that you are doing the best you can considering the circumstances before you. Be kind to yourself, acknowledge you have a right to your feelings. Everyone does.

Journal about it.

Write it out, baby! Everything! Your journal is a safe space to say how you really feel. Some people aren’t comfortable with talking about their negative feelings, thinking that they need to remain positive. Expressing the negative thoughts paves the way to positivity. Writing about or stating your fears out loud will not make them come true. It’s persistent negativity that leads us down a less desirable path.

As you journal, turn your thoughts around by stating the potentially positive outcome as well as your fears. It may take a while to achieve this, and that is perfectly fine.

Find joy.

Yes, you heard me right. There are things you love doing that you can still do, even in isolation. There are precious moments in conversations, nature, interaction with your children, friendship, music, and even feel-good things in social media. Capture those moments and appreciate them. Feel them in your heart. Plant a smile on your face. Allowing yourself to feel the good helps to balance the bad.

Lean on someone.

I’m here for you and so are many other professionals who can help you through these times. Don’t restrict your conversations and your intake of information to the (many) negative factors of Covid-19. This is a time for self-growth. Let’s all come out of this as stronger, kinder, and more emotionally intelligent human beings. Find someone to support you on this journey!

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Affirmations and Emotional Freedom Techniques for Difficult Times https://marlatabaka.com/2020/03/23/affirmations-and-emotional-freedom-techniques-for-difficult-times/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=affirmations-and-emotional-freedom-techniques-for-difficult-times Mon, 23 Mar 2020 13:48:58 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=60903 I’m beginning to see more posts from people who are reaching out to their crowd with offers of help during this trying time. From running necessary errands for their senior and immunocompromised neighbors to offering free online support resources, these folks are funneling their internal energy into an outward-facing mission. But it’s difficult to thrive […]

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I’m beginning to see more posts from people who are reaching out to their crowd with offers of help during this trying time. From running necessary errands for their senior and immunocompromised neighbors to offering free online support resources, these folks are funneling their internal energy into an outward-facing mission. But it’s difficult to thrive through helping others when you are immobilized by fear.

Know this: Everyone is afraid right now because we are all human.  It’s absolutely normal and acceptable to be afraid. Even the strongest among us are deeply concerned about some aspects of this war on Coronavirus.

Love yourself first, no matter who you are or what you’re feeling in the moment. Fear is not a bad thing, it’s what we do with it and that can become destructive.

Also know that you’re not alone.

Remember, fear does not make you weak; it can motivate you to access your greatest strengths and qualities.

You are amazing, no matter what you’re feeling and thinking right now. There is no time better than now to harvest all of that amazingness and make a difference. Whether it’s within yourself, your household, or the communities beyond your front door, even the smallest gesture will make a big difference.

Time for my secret weapon.

You can ease your stress and summon up the strength to reach out to others, even in the smallest way. The Emotional Freedom Techniques is the most efficient, powerful tool I know to do just that. There are many video resources on Facebook and sites like The Tapping Solution to help you release some of your fear.

Tap as often as you can. Below are a few affirmations to say as you tap on the meridian points we use in EFT. Use these affirmations as a boost throughout your day. There is a free tapping chart available on my EFT page.

Tap on any of the points, even if you use only one or two of your favorite points. Remember that if you are out in public use points that are not on your face. Follow these affirmations as a script, choose only a few, and/or create your own—whatever works best for you.

Affirmations and acceptance of yourself.

I feel fearful right now, and I accept myself, fear and all.

Everyone feels the coronavirus fear, fear is human and acceptable.

I forgive myself for not being perfect because I am human.

I am not alone.

I choose [insert here] (hope, love, kindness, joy, peace, strength, etc.).

I also know that at this very moment, I am safe.

At this moment I am safe.

I choose to release some of my fear now. I fill myself with [peace and calm].

I accept [peace and calm] – I feel it in my heart.

I choose to allow [peace, hope, love, well-being] to fill my heart.

Love is abundant in this world.

I give and accept love freely and fully.

I am willing to release some of my fear, along with any other obstacles to peace.

In this moment, I am safe.

I am safe. I am loved. I am grounded.

I release all that does not serve me.

I breathe with ease and inner-calm.

My breath flows deeply and smoothly.

I choose a deep, cleansing breath now. (Breathe deeply)

In this moment, I am filled with peace.

I choose to focus on my blessings. I am grateful.

I am safe. I am loved. I am strong. I am grounded.

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But I Love Myself Anyway https://marlatabaka.com/2020/03/08/using-eft-tapping-to-boost-your-confidence/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=using-eft-tapping-to-boost-your-confidence Sun, 08 Mar 2020 15:06:22 +0000 https://marlatabaka.com/?p=60896 Your thoughts before EFT Tapping I’ll never succeed. I don’t deserve success. I don’t even deserve to be loved. I’ll never be happy. I’m not enough. I feel like a fraud. I can’t do this; I don’t have what it takes. Inner B.S. thoughts like these keep too many dreams from becoming a reality. For […]

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Your thoughts before EFT Tapping

I’ll never succeed.
I don’t deserve success.
I don’t even deserve to be loved.
I’ll never be happy.
I’m not enough.
I feel like a fraud.
I can’t do this; I don’t have what it takes.

Inner B.S. thoughts like these keep too many dreams from becoming a reality.

For those who are plagued with these often crippling thoughts, they may pause at times, but they don’t go away.

They come from a place deep down inside—secrets, trauma, life experiences that tell you that you’re not good enough, smart enough, or worthy of your dreams.

This rambling recording of negativity has been with you for such a long time that it’s become a part of who you are.

You dismiss the root cause of your B.S. thoughts because, after all, you’re a logically minded adult, you should be over it by now.

But you don’t just get over it. The beliefs and physical responses to your negative life experiences are stored in your nervous system and get triggered at a subconscious level. This is a big part of the reason for your B.S. soundtrack.

Enter my Secret Weapon.

The Emotional Freedom Techniques, aka, EFT, or tapping, is a powerful method that can reprogram your thinking and release your once hostage dream of freedom. Yes, your thoughts of doubt and fear can be replaced with positive thoughts and beliefs that will support you in your entrepreneurial and life endeavors.

While I have nearly 20 years of evidence that EFT is a powerful tool, I learned something from a client this week that reminded me of the subtle energetic nuances of tapping.

A common phrase used in EFT is, “I love and accept myself anyway.” Sometimes, as I’m guiding a client through a tapping session, I’ll shorten it to, “But, I love myself anyway.” Sadly, this is not always easy for people to say.

I. Love. Myself. Anyway.

Say it out loud three times! Do you feel it? Do you believe it?

My client has transformed this single sentence into a tool of its own. During the week between our coaching sessions, she began adding, “But I love myself anyway,” to the end of every negative thought that her mind threw at her.

“I’m stuck in this awful situation, and I’ll never get out…but I love myself anyway.”

“I’m never going to get my business to the next level. I feel like giving up. But I love myself anyway.”

What a great way to diffuse negative thoughts! Love is powerful. Acknowledging her negative thoughts, rather than hatefully push them down, sends a clear message to the brain that the B.S. thinking will not win out.

What a loving way to talk back to self-talk. When you say something often enough, you learn to believe it. “But I love myself anyway,” is a beautiful thing to acknowledge.

Shift your thinking – I call it BullShift™ – by calling out the limiting thoughts that come to you and placing the focus on loving yourself instead of dwelling in the B.S. It’s pure. It’s simple. And it’s a subtle yet mighty force that will inspire you to believe in yourself.

Have you subscribed to my 10-Day Bullshift™ Challenge yet? 10 exercises, one day at a time, will help you to transform your negative thinking into the kind of thinking that you need in order to succeed as an entrepreneur. And, guess what? It’s free! 

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