Maria Connolly, LPC

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Continually grow as a person and find your work/life balance

Become The Observer of Your Life, Then Lasting Change Will Follow

Like an artist, you can become The Observer in your life, to mindfully acknowledge each “brush stroke” as it transforms your “canvas”, your life.

“The best way to capture moments is to pay attention. This is how we cultivate mindfulness.” ~ Jon Kabat-Zinn

How observant are you? If I asked you to identify the colors in a picture of a forest, no doubt you would say green, brown, and maybe some yellow. But an artist closely inspects each area for color or hue; she also sees the variances of shade (black added to the hue), tone (gray added to the hue) and tint (white added to the hue). Not only that, she detects the differences in intensity and value. Before the painting is done, the artist will have mixed hundreds of different combinations of paint, each one intentionally performing a specific function on the canvas.

Likewise, I encourage you to become The Observer of your own life and mindfully acknowledge each “brush stroke” that is transforming your “canvas”, your life. You get to choose. Or as I often share with my clients a quote from Pema Chödrön, “You are the sky. Everything else is just the weather.” Conditions and circumstances, like the weather, come and go. You get to decide what stays permanently.

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Live a Better Life by Making Good Decisions Faster

Learn how to live a better life by making good decisions faster, bringing greater satisfaction, while producing the least amount of regrets.“When someone makes a decision, he is really diving into a strong current that will carry him to places he had never dreamed of when he first made the decision.” ~ Paulo Coelho

Who you are today is a direct result of the decisions, small and great, you’ve made throughout your life. Sometimes, this can be a bitter pill to swallow. However, once you accept it, you can purposefully alter the way you make decisions, so you can live a better life — one that you design for yourself, not one that’s been designed for you.

Some decisions you make rationally, after weighing the pros and cons. Other decisions you make intuitively, based on an internal sense of knowing what’s right for you.

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How to Be Fearless — Courageously Meet Challenges Head On

Fear is useful when it alerts us to real danger; yet personal development demands that we be fearless when we’re faced with challenges and new opportunities“Of all the liars in the world, sometimes the worst are our own fears.” ~ Rudyard Kipling

Public speaking…heights…revealing true feelings…snakes…what do these have in common? They all generate fear in the hearts of many people. Children seem to be fearless, but over time, we collect our own unique set of fears. What you fear and why, will not match up with what I fear. But the good news is we can all learn how to be fearless, in the sense of not letting unreasonable, out-of-control fears keep us small.

What is fear and how can we be fearless?

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4 Core Components of Resilience: How to Become a More Resilient Person

Quote: You Are Stronger Than You Think“If you can see yourself as an artist, and you can see that your life is your own creation, then why not create the most beautiful story for yourself?” ~ Don Miguel Ruiz

Life is full of unexpected twist and turns; some are pleasant and welcomed, others are devastating. At times we may think we just can’t endure it. Especially is this so after the loss of a loved one to death or a cherished privilege is snatched away from you, such as a dream job, a vocation that has defined your identity, or your security. What is it that makes us get back up, dust ourselves off and keep going? It’s the quality of resilience.

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Be Patient with Yourself by Mindfully Observing Without Judgment

As the crisis continues, be patient with yourself. Even if you feel like you can’t do anything, you can strengthen your patience  and come out of this a stronger person. “Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

This pandemic doesn’t seem like it’s going away any time soon. As the days turn into weeks, and the weeks turn into months, our patience may begin to run thin. Since we know this, it will be helpful to review how you can become more lovingly patient with yourself.

While you may plan to use the stay-at-home order to feverishly clean your home, write a book, or work on increasing your mastery of a new skill, you might find yourself feeling too down to do so. And that might lead you to feeling worthless or unproductive.

Now is not the time to put such undue pressure on yourself. The stress and worry of trying to make sense of these unpredictable times, is hard on us, whether we admit it or not. It can’t help but change us, as it changes the very world around us.

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