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IS YOUR DEFINITION OF SANITY SANE?

Have you ever questioned your sanity? Not in a joking way that told the world, ‘Ha! Ha! That is crazy!’ but in a way that has made you reconsider whether you are behaving rightly.

When I was a young child, I literally saw my mother go insane. That woman believed she was the Immaculate Conception pregnant with the child of Jesus Christ. A doctor swiftly ordered her psychiatric evaluation. After her diagnostic came in, my mother moved to a mental hospital where she received electric shocks treatments for her psychosis. Months later, she finally returned home. I remember how different she was when I looked at her. My mother had deep circles under her eyes and was often blankly staring in space. I became even more scared of her. In my young child’s mind, I wanted to be nothing like her. Therefore, I went out of my way to prove to myself that I was sane. Can you relate?

Here are the ways I tried to prove my sanity to myself:

#1. I lived in my head.

In order to rationalize my life, I have accumulated eighteen degrees and certifications, including one bachelor’s degree, one master’s degree, one CFA designation, and other designations/diplomas. Is sanity living in our head?

#2. I ignored my feelings and emotions.

As far as I was concerned, I believed it was much safer to keep my mouth shut and bend backwards for approval than honouring what I was feeling within.  Is sanity ignoring our feelings and emotions?

#3. I pretended all is well.

I kept my heart closed to feeling all my feelings and emotions. Is sanity pretending all is well?

#4. I made my children my everything.

My mother was a woman who was severely depressed … never truly smiling … never truly crying … just some sort of robot walking upon the face of the earth. To anyone who listened, she claimed, “My kids are my everything!” Let it be known that my children became my whole world. Is insanity making another person our everything?

At this point, you might be wondering,

What is sanity? 

According to the dictionary, sanity is soundness of mind, which means the ability to think and behave in a normal and rational manner. WOW!

Considering that ‘normal’ is ‘whatever we each grew up with’ my normal was to have a severely depressed mother.

Considering that ‘rational’ is ‘however we each were taught to think’ my rational was to be anything, but my mother.

In conclusion, to prove to myself that I was sane, I lived inside my head, I ignored all my feelings and emotions, I pretended all is well, and I made my children my everything. Having said that, did you know that an insane person is also considered to be living inside their head, ignoring all their feelings and emotions, and pretending all is well while making someone/something else their whole focus? I had become my mother. Now I regularly question my sanity. What about you?

My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence coach who assists her clients in going beyond what they falsely believe to be the normal, rational thing to do in their life. To book a chat with me where we’ll discuss what sanity means to you: https://walkinginside.com/contact-us/

Your EQ coach,
Anne
www.walkinginside.com
Photo: https://unsplash.com
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HOW TO ELIMINATE A OO7 DOUBLE LIFE

When James* called upon me, he asked that we meet in an open restaurant downtown Vancouver. Asking him why there instead of my office, he laughed and said, ‘Because I need it this way.’ 
 
On the agreed upon date and time of rendez-vous, James sat down in front of me and immediately placed his hands under the table where I could Not see them. This gesture alone told me a lot about James, how easily he pretended to be emotionally open yet felt the want to hide once in front of me.
 
Through my talking with him, I found out James was one of nine children from a very large Catholic South American family. He grew up being an altar boy, going to Sunday school, and saying prayers. But something was Not working for him… In his teenage years, he realized he was gay and being gay is apparently something deemed unacceptable in his family and culture.
 
 

Have you ever been in a situation where you felt rejected for what you are?

 
 
James moved to Vancouver, found a job, and said he met the ‘love of his life’, whom he married a couple of years later. Though saying he is happily married, James had two Facebook accounts, one ‘straight’ and one gay, to ‘spare’ the family as he said. Looking down, he confessed few people (if any) where he came from knew he was even married.
 
 

Can you imagine what it feels like to hide things from the people you love? 

 
 
In tears, James said he needed to come out of the closet as a gay and this is why he was coming to see me. He felt he could Not do it alone, he said this was too much for him to face alone.
 

 
I asked…
 
 

In a perfect world, what would your life be like right now?

 
 
Jame’s face brightened. He shared how he would only have one Facebook account and one Instagram account. He laughed saying he would show pictures from the ‘crazy’ adventures he and his husband have been on, their food expeditions, their vacations together, even their honeymoon trip…
 
I asked James if he truly loved his husband. Without hesitation he answered choking up, “Are you kidding me? He is the best thing that has ever happened to me!”
 
I replied,
 
 

When we truly love someone, including ourselves, do we hide who we are?

 
 
James burst into tears. He did Not seem to care anymore whether the waiter or other patrons saw him crying; his shoulders were heaving up and down with heavy sobs. Then he took a deep breath, clenched his teeth, and said, “I deserve better! My husband deserves better! I am coming out!” I was impressed by this fiery determination.
 
That day, he went home with homework to do. Over the next seven days, he had to call every member of his family, his eight siblings and two parents, and tell each one of them he was gay. His framework looked something like ‘I am calling to share something important to me. I am gay. Being gay is a part of me, it is Not all of me. I love you.”
 
 

Have you ever had to stand up for what you believe in? How easy was it?

 
 
At our next coaching session, James sat down with his journal open. Where he had drawn ten little people with their name on top of each, three of them were still left unmarked by an ‘X’ signifying ‘the job is done’ and they knew he was gay.
 
I open directly,
 
 

What happened to you missing your goal?

 
James grabbed his journal with both hands. He mumbled how he was Not truly close to the only sibling left on the list as this person had once sexually assaulted him when he was a kid… He also said how many of his siblings were now sending him harassment messages telling him he was ‘wrong’, going to ‘hell, and ‘Don’t tell mom and dad! They’re too old and mom’s depression is too bad!’
 
Like so many, James was caught once more living a double life, living in the background of his own life while trying to get ‘approval’ from others, especially from members of his family.
 
 

Whose approval is most important to you to be happy?

 
I pointed to the top of the page where all his little people drawings were and I asked him to write down a story title expressing what his goal is. His pen almost pierced the paper as he wrote in capital letters at the top,
 

“I AM COMING OUT!”

 
 
Let me ask you…
 

Why do we become untruthful?

Why do we pursue lies?

 
 
I believe the answer is, because we think it will be better.
 
Is it though? How was James’ constant lying about being gay going to advance his goal of coming out of the closet?
 
Clearly, denying our truth does Not work.
 
With this in mind…
 

How do things become better?

 

I believe, things become better when we focus on 

  • becoming truthful. ‘What is my truth?’

  • becoming intentional. ‘What can I do right now to uphold my truth?’

  • becoming accountable. ‘What can I do to hold myself accountable so I live my truth?

 
I could certainly relate to James. When I got married, I did not tell my then husband about the way I grew up, the level of violence. I thought he would ‘love’ me more if I buried what had happened to me as a child. Can you relate? My life changed for the better when I became truthful, intentional, and accountable.
 
 

Here are some rock solid tips to assist you who may suffer from ‘007 Double Life  Syndrome’:

Once you have identified what your truth is, whether it is to come of the closet as gay or lesbian, leave an unhappy marriage, change jobs, or …
 

  • Make a list of who needs to know. When we make the decision to come out with our truth, often, we tend to believe everyone ‘must’ know all at once. Spare yourself feeling overwhelmed, work in stages.

  • Come up with an on point message telling your truth. Keep it short. Keep it sweet. Keep it to the point. Understand there is plenty of time later to go into the ‘Why did this happen?’ if you ever chose to.

  • Have an accountability system/person in place. Though many of us say we ‘know’ what we need to do in order to be happy, many of us end up losing our nerve when the stakes are deemed high.Therefore, having someone on your team who is Not emotionally attached to your situation allows for actions with a greater sense of clarity.

 
 
Now imagine somebody has just read these tips…
 

What do you believe will be their greatest challenge?

 
Before James came to see me, he had all the best intentions in the world, BUT he lacked a solid accountability system. This is why as soon as he went into ‘What will they think of me?’ he lost his nerve of telling his truth to his family.
 
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach who holds her clients highly accountable so they get to live their truth openly, and like James, get to come out at the top of their story page.
 
For coaching inquiries, reach out to me at anne@walkinginside.com
 
Your Emotional Intelligence Coach,
Anne
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
 

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IS LINKEDIN BECOMING THE NEW TINDER?

Have you ever received a message from one of your LinkedIn contacts? In that moment, where were you physically? Were you at the office sitting at your desk? Were you standing at home with your toddler in your arms? Perhaps your spouse or teenager walked into the room as you were checking your messages? Keep these scenarios in mind as you read on…
 
One of my LinkedIn contacts, S. D., sent me a message in which he shared how his mother had recently died. He said he was feeling lost’ and needed ‘empathy’. Since we all go through turbulent moments sometimes, I messaged him with words I trust are compassionate. I received the following response from him, “this is what I meant by empathy in message. sorry im not happy doing this or when I’m not doing this. please have empathy. thanks”. 
 
To assist you in getting what S.D. was saying by ‘this is what I meant by empathy’, know that he sent me a full profile close-up picture of an erect penis. The picture was taken at such a close range that pubic hair and veins were easily discernible or perhaps it was just my big Mac screen tricking my eyes?
 
 

Do you consider racy pictures a rare occurrence on LinkedIn?

 
 
For many of my business contacts, including myself, this is actually a common reality. In the course of business, many of us get solicited by what I call ‘The Invisible Crowd’, the men and women who believe they need to show racy pictures in order to get our attention.
 
 
S.D. seems quite young, early 20s, about the same age as my adult son. You might wonder,
 
 

Could young adults be the only ones sharing racy pictures on LinkedIn?

The answer is NO.

 
 
Let me introduce to you D.L. who is in his late 30s apparently. In his message to me, he said that he found me ‘hot’  and wanted to ‘f*ck  me’. Perhaps wanting to make sure I really got what he was saying, I got one penis picture (sparing you this one again) and a series of chest / muscles pictures (like the one included with this article). The difference between him and S.D. is that S.D. messaged me directly on LinkedIn and D.L. took my business cell phone from my LinkedIn profile to text me his ‘information’.
 
 

Is LinkedIn becoming the new Tinder?

 
Meet D. S., a businessman I presume to be in his 40s based on the fully clothed picture of himself that accompanied his email. Here is what he had to say after checking my profile on LinkedIn and grabbing my business email from the LinkedIn network:
 

  “… I must confess you are pretty…”

“… I understand the medium is a business networking medium and not a dating or social networking website and i don’t intend to use it for one .”

“…hope to learn more about you too that is if you are single…”

 
 
Still not convinced about the lack of ethical behaviour some LinkedIN users are displaying? Let’s ask A.W. to see what he has to say. A.W. claims he is in his 50s and, like D.S., checked my LinkedIn profile then grabbed my business email from there:
 

“I read your profile on linked-in and you caught my eye…”

“This is all new for me, it is the  first time i would ever go against protocol of doing business only on the Linked-in website.”

“You should check me out and let me know what you think.”

 
 
Some people are shocked when I share with them the level of unethical behaviour I am at times encountering on LinkedIn from men and women of all ages. Like me, they have also seen instances where people have spoken up against racy pictures or trolling emails, saying that, “LinkedIn is Not the new Tinder.”
 
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach. Though I am skilled at addressing potential unethical behaviours in the workplace, many business professionals are not as they have shared with me in private sessions.
 

Now, to the people behaving like predators on LinkedIn, here is what I have to say:

 

Saying that you do not know you are behaving unethically, 

when the evidence clearly says you do know,

 is a terrible defence. 

 
 
If you want to lie to yourself, feel free to do so. Just don’t lie to me.
 

According to the Canadian Mental Health Commission of Canada, in any given year:

  • 1/5 in Canada experiences a mental health problem or illness, with a cost of over $50 BILLION to the economy.

  • Only 1/3 who experience a mental health problem or illness report that they have sought and received services and treatment.

  • In the workplace, mental health problems and illnesses typically account for approximately 30% of short- and long-term disability.

  • Mental health problems and illnesses are rated one of the top three drivers of both short- and long-term disability claims by more than 80% of Canadian employers.

  • As early as 2010, mental health conditions were responsible for 47% of all approved disability claims in the federal civil service, almost double the percentage of twenty years earlier.

  • Mental health problems and illnesses also account for more than $6 billion in lost productivity.

 
This is just Canada… Now imagine what the numbers must be like in the USA with their population 10X bigger than Canada’s…
 
Just for fun, let’s do a quick math… Let’s take a Canadian company of 1,000 employees…

  • 200 (1/5) employees are currently experiencing a mental health problem or illness.

  • Since only 33% are seeking treatment (33% x 200 = 66), this means 134 (200-66) are playing ostrich. What does playing ostrich mean? Playing ostrich means answering ‘I’m fine!’ when one’s world is actually collapsing on the inside.

Now, for these 134 employees refusing to acknowledge they might need more emotional intelligence tools and techniques… maybe you even know someone in this situation right now…
 

What is the cost to your company for short- and long-term disability pay-out? 

 

What is the cost to your company in lost productivity?

 

What is the cost to your company in potential harassment lawsuits?

 
Before answering, bear in mind I received these pictures during business hours and these four persons were most likely sitting at their office desk, maybe even across you…
 

But perhaps… worst of all…

 

What is the cost to you for having been exposed to predator behaviours?

Emotionally?

Financially?

Physically?

Spiritually? 

 
What is the cost to your spouse or your child who happened to be in the same room as you when you checked your LinkedIn messages and got greeted by an erect penis, physical chest, or close-up vagina?
 
Let me get something straight…
 
 

It’s not because you may not see it in your own LinkedIn inbox 

that racy pictures/emails/texts do not exist 

within your business network or company. 

 
 

Playing ostrich to predator behaviour

not only condones this behaviour (agreement by looking the other way), 

it has the potential of becoming extremely costly to you and your company.

 
 
Since people suffering from mental illness cost the Canadian economy $50 BILLION IN ANY GIVEN YEAR, what are these 134 employees truly costing a 1,000 employees company?
 
Assuming that total claims by overall employees equal $500,000 (I am being extremely generous by stating a low number as an example) and 47% are mental related claims, we are looking at a ballpark number of $235,000 (47% x $500,000)
 
Without a doubt, $235,000 is a lot of money that could have been contributed generously to any financial bottom line or even your year-end bonus.
 
By hiring me as your Emotional Intelligence Coach, spending $50,000- $75,000 to ensure your employees understand, live, and uphold strong emotional boundaries is a relatively small fee to pay compared to $235,000 with a raining chance of even more costly harassment lawsuits. From where I am sitting, it looks like a financial savings of 80%+.
 

Is LinkedIn becoming the new Tinder?

Are you truly prepared to find out?

 
My name is Anne Beaulieu. I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach and Authentic Speaker who can be reached at anne@walkinginside.com. Let’s make Emotional Intelligence a growing asset within your company instead of you incurring a predator-type liability.
 
Respectfully,
Anne
P.S. If you wish to receive the names of these four persons behaving like predators to ensure they are never part of your business network, kindly let me know. I do have pictures and emails to support what I have shared in this article.
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
 

Categories
Accountability Anxiety Assertiveness Authenticity Awareness Blind Spots Commitment Compassion Conscience Courage Curiosity Decency Depression Dreams Emotional Intelligence Empathy Enabling Equality Faith Forgiveness freedom Frustration Gratefulness Guilt Happiness Hope Ignorance Inner Child Inner Peace Insanity Instinct Intellect Intent Intentions Intuition Joy Leadership Life Purpose Love Magic Mindfullness Parenting Self Patience Peace procrastination Racism Reality Relationship Sadness Sanity Satisfaction Self-Confidence Self-empowerment Self-Worth Sensitivity Space Success Tolerance Trust WalkingInside

ROUND AND ROUND

ROUND AND ROUND
 
Round and round
We go again
On the merry-go-round of life.
Ups and downs,
We think that’s life
Until we get off our mount.
 
Round and round
We go again
On the merry-go-round of life.
Laughter and tears
We think we’re here
Until we go deep within.
 
In and in
We go again
On the merry-go-round of life,
Darkness and light
Fuse into one
Until we go round and round.
 
With love & compassion,
Anne
 
What makes any of us go round and round in circles?
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
Categories
acceptance Accountability Assertiveness Authenticity Awareness Blind Spots Commitment Compassion Confidence Conscience Courage Curiosity Emotional Intelligence Empathy Enabling Equality Faith Forgiveness freedom Friendship Gratefulness Happiness Hope Ignorance Imagination Inner Child Inner Peace Insanity Intellect Intent Intentions Intuition Joy Leadership Life Purpose Love Magic Mindfullness Parenting Self Patience Peace Racism Reality Relationship Sadness Sanity Satisfaction Self-Confidence Self-empowerment Self-Worth Sensitivity Settling Shame Social Awareness Space Success Tolerance Trust WalkingInside

I — USED TO THINK

I — USED TO THINK
 
I used to think
A tree was just a tree
I saw it with my own mind
Roots, trunk, branches, leaves.
 
I used to think
You were different than me
I saw it with my own mind
Bodies, fences, judgement, fear.
 
Thanks to my mentor, I met me
For a moment, I stopped thinking,
In stillness, my mind cracked open
Discovering sunshine cooling breeze within.
 
How refreshing
To hear inside the giggles of a small child
Who never thought we were separate
Who’s always known we all belong.
 
Because of my love for this child and me
The lines in my mind are becoming blurry
If there is nothing separating you from me
Then, who am I? What are we?
 
Willing to know, I ask her to show me the way
How I may serve her from a place of integrity
Laughing, she is showing a world full of wonders
Where roots and bodies, you and me,
Are merging into, this or something greater,
Then… I used to think.
 
With love & compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
 
To know more about Soul Leadership: www.fullmontyleadership.com
 
P.S. With this post, I am including more forms and patterns I have seen when opening up pictures. This time, I am not showing the pictures they may have originated from because I want you to imagine what can possibly give rise to …