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HOW TO GET THROUGH “HE’S NOT THAT INTO YOU”

I look at him, a playful grin on my face. I am laying on the bed, watching him as he enters the bedroom. “Did you miss me?” he asks casually. As I pull him towards me, I whisper, “Let me show you…”
 
We have all been in this kind of situation…. where we have believed we were in ‘love’ and ‘all’ that mattered was ‘being’ together, right?
 
… Until the dreadful moment where we realize…
 

“What the hell did I get myself into?”

 
 
In the past, I have had my share of this kind of realizations. Feeling squeezed, I wondered,
 

 “What is wrong? Why isn’t he that into me?”

 
 
I thought… it all started ‘great’… We locked eyes across the room and felt a strong physical attraction towards one another.
 
Can you relate?
 
… And before we took the time to really know each other, there we were, showing how much we had missed each other by having sex.
 
 

Is sex automatically synonymous of intimacy?

 
 
I was so eager to have a relationship that I did not know how to be in a relationship.
 
Sounds familiar?
 
Before long, I started noticing his,“Hey, my battery’s about to die, gotta go, ok? Love ya though!”
 
This type of behaviour from him surfaced especially when I wanted to talk about our lack of spending time together…
 
 

Is spending time together automatically synonymous of intimacy?

 
To my increasingly ignored hurt feelings, he answered things like, “You’re harshing my mellow right now!” before storming out of the door, leaving me feeling even more unwanted, unloved, and undesired.
 
It is in moments like these that I have said,
 

“What the hell did I get myself into?”

 
 
 
It has taken me many years of mentoring (I was stubborn) to deeply realize that,
 
 

Like attracts like. 

 
Go back. Read it again.
 
 

A toxic relationship is based on two individuals having the 

SAME primary wound, but

DIFFERENT coping mechanisms.

 
Look at it as a magnet… The magnet is the toxic relationship wound and each end is one person’s coping mechanisms (+ or -). A + could be confrontational, a – could be withdrawal…
 
 

Now, what is your primary wound? 

 
My primary wound is the shame of existence. I grew up in a household where my father treated me like chattel, ‘do as I say or else!’ I had to blindly obey, no matter what I felt. I mainly felt unseen, unheard, unloved. This is why in the past I became attracted to men who treated me like chattel, who did not see me for who I truly am, who did not believe my needs, feelings, and emotions mattered.
 
Is it any surprise to you now that I attracted men who were not that into me?
 
What about you?
 
Let’s take it deeper…
 

What is the greatest form of intimacy?

 
 
I have come to deeply believe,
 

The greatest form of intimacy is, vulnerability by authenticity.

 
 
Go back. Read it again.
 
 
What does this mean, you may ask?
 

Intimacy is, 

 

Being vulnerable with our own self 

by discovering who we are at the core of our being.

 

It is the greatest form of self-love.

 
 
Think about it… If we start discovering who we truly are… where our past hurt comes from… and do somethings to heal our self… What do you believe happens to toxic relationships?
 
I strongly believe,
 

Toxic relationships then become a thing of the past.

 
 
For example, I often get propositioned by men who approach me with seemingly hungry eyes as they say, “I love how deeply connected you are to yourself, it’s sexy as fuck…” 
 
Their dry hunger I perceive, this kind of self-starving self-love, puts me off so much that I energetically close the door on them.
 
Why?
 

With self-discovery comes discernment! 

 
 
When we have discernment, we feel what works for us, we feel gradually into situations or possible relationships. There is no more denying, no more giving in to just blind physical attraction alone, we become clear!
 
 

How do we become intimate with our self?

 

  • Spend time alone. Ask yourself, ‘What do I need right now?’ and ‘What do I really want in my life?’ Act rightfully upon these answers. Build compassion for your self.

 

  • Build strong emotional boundaries. I know, it is easy to say and hard to do, especially for many of us who spend more time stating what they do not want rather than deeply feeling knowing what they do want.

 

But for people like you and me who are deeply committed to their healing,

 

  • Hire an emotional intelligence coach or mentor. We all have blind spots and unless conditioning is transcended, guess what? It will keep running the show under, “What the hell did I get myself into?”

 
Now, I am so deeply into-me-see (intimacy) that I am becoming a different kind of magnet, a magnet who attracts people like me, getting intimately connected with their own self.
 

Like attracts like, remember?

 
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach, Authentic Speaker, and Bestselling Author. I can be reached at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With love & compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com

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WHAT WOULD YOU GIVE TO SAY, “IT’S NOT WORK ANYMORE”

I have just spent the last 90 minutes with my mentor Dov Baron. As he leads me to the elevator, he asks me,
 
“What are you doing tonight?”
 
I pause and answer, “There’s this blog I want to finish writing after my walk, but that’s not work, it’s not work anymore”
 
Dov looks at me with a smile on his face, his face soft, a nod of acknowledgement following my revelation.
 
I walk outside and I think about what I had just said, “It’s not work anymore”. The more I am pondering, the more I am coming to the following realization…
 
When the concierge in my building made a comment again that he had seen me late ‘at work’ again, I paused, unsure what to say. I mean, how do we explain to someone that writing is my passion and it is not work for me anymore?
 
When a friend called and asked, “Hey, what are you working on right now?” I caught myself pausing, unsure what to answer again. Working on a speaking presentation, making workshops proposals, coaching clients… well… that’s not work anymore either.
 

So, what has been happening?

 
I grew up in a very blue collar community, where most people never attend college after high school if they finish high school at all. In this environment, I developed specific ideas about work and they are not pretty…
 

Work is something like

  • “a job with a minimum of 40 hours at minimum wage and shitty benefits”

  • “a job where my boss irritates me and my co-workers are so-so”

  • “a job where I am ‘chained’ to a desk doing ‘chores’ I do not wish to do”

 
 
Sounds terrible, doesn’t it?
 
And yet, this is how many people, including the old me, view work, as some kind of slave ogre master taking away the freedom of little children…
 

Can you relate?

 
Wanting to know more about ‘work’, I check into my French etymology dictionary to see where the hell did my parents get their ideas of work from…
 
Turns out,
 

travailler, travail’ (to work, work), as early as the 12th century, 

means ‘torment, suffering’.

 
 
SAY WHAT!
 
From the 16th century on,
 

‘travailler’ starts taking its modern meaning: 

“to give our self misery for”.

 
SOOOOOOOO……..
 
If I get this straight… the French went from being a victim of work to victimizing themselves about work?
 

What kind evolution progress is this???

 
Maybe the English know to suffer less than the French?
 
Turns out,
 

“work” comes from 

the Old English woerc

Germanic wyrcan

Dutch werk

and German werk

 
The irony does not escape me… the English have had to check the core meaning of work across four nations? O_O
 
Guess what?
 

Work in English, just like work in French, 

are both derived from the latin trepaliare

which means to torture, to inflict suffering or agony. 

 
 
Insight of this,
 
 

WHO THE HELL WANTS TO WORK?!!!

 
 
Maybe, the Chinese can enlighten a little?…
 
In Chinese Mandarin,
 
Work translates into 工作 (gongzuo)
 

工 (gong)

means worker, the working class BUT it also has the meaning of skill, craftsmanship, to be versed in, to be good at
 

作 (zuo)

means to rise, to grow, to write, to compose, writings (as in ‘the works’)
 
 
Therefore, for the Chinese,
 

工作 (gongzuo) means to develop one’s craftsmanship 

so one can rise and grow?

 
 
SOUNDS LIKE PASSION TO ME!
 
This is just it!
 
I love what I do! I love speaking, coaching, and blogging! These ‘activities’ are not work anymore, they are vehicles for passion, bringing more compassion into our world.
 
When I used to believe that work was work, I had very little compassion for myself. I mainly came from a place of duty and obligation. I was very much a victim of my own closed-minded upbringing.
 
Once I started developing compassion for myself, my ‘work’ became less about work and more about passion, a rising and growing flame that  keeps burning bright inside my heart.
 
Do I have my moments when some of the stuff I need to do feels like work? Yes. Bookkeeping is such a thing for me. This is why I have contracted this work out, so I can keep focusing on Compassion, my Burning Passion inside of me.
 
SOUNDS MIGHTY FULFILLING!
 
Therefore, if work is still work for you, perhaps it is high time you hire an Emotional Intelligence Coach or Mentor.
Why?
 

Because if you knew how to turn your work into passion,

you would already be living it right now….

.
.
.
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach and a Work Myth Buster. Contact me at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With Compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com

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WHAT OUR PEEING HABITS REVEAL…

I am somewhere deep in the countryside. It is Sunday afternoon, sunny, and beside me is sitting my 16 year old listening to her music on her headphones.
 
I love driving on this back road, it is full of twists and turns, a road less travelled, or so it seems.
 
On each side of the road is a large dug trench as a ditch. Each lane is super narrow, nowhere to stop the car, really, unless I want every car coming behind me to stop as well.
 
Every once in a while, we meet an old fashioned mail box, with its flap either up or down, signalling perhaps someone’s driveway nearby?
 
But none of it matters because, right now, I need to pee. I really really really need to pee.
 
Yes, I did pee back at the restaurant and I need to go again.
 
As minutes pass by, the need to pee becomes stronger and stronger. I tell myself, “I’ll wait until the coast is clear…”
 
 

How many of you have ever withheld your pee 

until there was no one else around?

 
 
I sit on one butt cheek then the other. I move my body forward then backward. I am now doing some kind of square dancing while holding the steering wheel super tight.
 
 

How many of you have ever done the pee-pee dance?

 
 
My bladder is hurting to the point it reminds me of the days when I sat ‘still’ during one of my bosses’ presentations to the rest of the board. Arghhhhh!
 

How many of you deny your basic needs, 

afraid to bring attention to yourself?

 
Something clicks in me, ‘Am I doing this kind of shit again?’ I ask myself.
 
Immediately, we get to some kind of crossroad. I can see a small patch of dirt and rocks on the other side. I stop the car right there, pull up the handbrake, turn to my daughter and say, “I need to pee. Now!”
 
I open the glove compartment and take out toilet paper I keep tucked there for a ‘rainy’ day. She simply says, “okay” as if what I am now doing is the most natural thing in the world.
 
She does not point out the seemingly abandoned farm where we were.
 
She does not mention the open hay field on our right.
 
She does not even tease me about the very likely possibility incoming cars might catch me with my pants down.
 
She just said ‘okay’ and smiled.
 
As I walk over to a tree, I think about my daughter’s response, how lovely and understanding it is. I take a look around.
 
The weather is beautiful, sunny and cold, the air crisp, and right here and there, I feel free, freer than I have ever been, me, this grown up woman, peeing in an open farm field, butt naked under the winter sun.
 
I laugh as I pull up my pants. I walk back to the car.
 
As I start driving again, I look around, a fresh perspective in my eyes and heart. I am not driving in pain anymore, I am driving light, present, hearing laughter in my heart.
 
The contrast is so sharp for me that I decided to write this blog.
 
Let me ask you,
 

In your life, 

are you driving in pain or 

are you moving forward with joy?

 
 
If, like the old me, you are feeling more pain than joy, then perhaps you need to revisit how well you are addressing your basic needs.
 

Here are some tips on how to address our basic needs:

 

  • Ask yourself, “What do I need right now?” Listen quietly to the answer and take immediate action to give it to your self. If you need to go pee, stand up, and politely excuse yourself. We all have a bladder and it can only contain so much before it explodes….

 

  • Affirm, “I matter, my needs matter.” Feel this affirmation as many times a day as possible and use it, especially if you feel the negative pull of putting other people’s perceived needs and wants ahead of yours.

 

  • Accept your humanity. We are not robots, we are not machines. It is okay to stop working and sit down for a nourishing meal. It is okay to take a 15 minutes break from gardening or mowing the lawn. It is okay to go pee in an open farm field on sunny winter day.

 
 
I trust you have found value in this article. My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach. I am also an Expert Pee Ninja who assists her clients from having a too-full bladder piss all over their life. I can be reached at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With compassion & deep respect,
Anne
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com

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HOW TO ADDRESS A HAND ON A NON-CONSENSUAL LOWER BACK

As soon as I enter the room, I spot him right away. He is not hard to miss, really, for he looks like a beautiful social butterfly, passing a joke to a man with a hand on their shoulder, shaking another man’s hand on their way out. What I find deeply intriguing is how his behaviour seems to change when facing women…
 
I watch him approach a female full frontal. To me, she appears like a nice girl, you know, the type that rather turns beet red instead of speaking up? Smiling a smile I believe does not quite reach his eyes, without even asking her, he pulls her hard into his arms. She laughs nervously and says… nothing!
 
I ask my girlfriend, “Who is he?”
 
She laughs, “It’s….  He’s actually harmless, Anne, he does this to all women.”
 
I look at her, shocked. “You mean, he is allowed to behave like this because this is what he does?”
 
She shrugs, “What’s you gonna do? I just ignore it.”
 
 

How many of us allow a potentially offensive behaviour 

to continue, just because ‘that’s what we do’?

 
 
I ask her, “Has he ever done this to you?”
 
“Yeah, several times.”
 
“Where has he touched you?”
 
She shrugs, “O, you know, he hugs me, gives me kisses on my cheeks.”
 
“Does he even know you’re married?”
 
“Yeah, I think so. He’s married too, very pretty wife. She’s not here tonight.”
 
My eyes grow bigger.
 
“Anne, he’s harmless!”
 
I am unconvinced. In my past, I have seen my share of men taking physical and emotional advantage of unassertive women. How do I know? I used to be a doormat for guys like him.
 
Our social butterfly zeroes in on me and swiftly walks over. Quickly cocking his head into mine, he smacks his right hand possessively on my lower back, pulls me closer to him physically, and asks ‘smiling’, “Who are you and what do you do?”
 
I look at him with zero smile on my face or in my eyes. “I’m Anne, I’m an Emotional Intelligence Coach.”
 
“A whaaat?”
 
I take a deep breath. “I assist people understand why they do what they do, like what you are doing with your right hand. Remove it now.”
 
Maybe it is my tone and body language… but he physically takes a step back. He stutters, “I’m… I’m… educated… and I don’t even understand what you do!”
 
“You’re educated? ‘Educated’ means something else to me, but get this….” By the time I finish listing my academic and professional accreditations, he throws both his arms in the air, and says the most fascinating thing ever,  “How do I compete with this? You just emasculated me!”
 
On this, he walks away, seemingly unhappy.
 
 
Let’s stop for a moment and consider,
 

Why do some women get uncomfortable 

when a hand is placed upon their lower back?

 
 
To answer this question,
 

Did you know our LOWER BACK is often associated with 

the feeling of FREEDOM?

 
 
Therefore,

If our lower back is touched in a non-consensual way, 

survival mode often kicks in…

 

some of us will…

say nothing (freeze) or

walk away (flight) or

insult or push back physically (fight)

 
Not a great place place to be in any case, if you ask me.
 
Therefore, let’s understand,
 

What might be the hidden purpose of a hand 

placed on another’s lower back?

 
Is it a sign of friendly gesture?
 
Is it a loose attempt at flirting?
 
Is it a focused attempt at testing the waters to see if can go lower?
 
I don’t know about you, but this social butterfly did give me some clue as to his own motives when he said, “How can I compete with this? You just emasculated me!”
 
Now,
 

If a hand is placed onto a non-consensual lower back, 

how much of it is a claim for domination?

 
You be the judge.
 

Here are some coaching tips for women who are having issues with unwanted hands placed onto their lower back:

 

  • Acknowledge the awkwardness of the situation. Pay attention to the physical signs showing up in your body. Are you tensing up? Does your breathing become shallower? When we become anxious, often, we stop breathing deeply, which signals the brain we are in the presence of some kind of personal danger.

  • Breathe deeply. Ask yourself, “What do I need right now?” If it is for the other person to remove their hand from your lower back, breathe deeply and firmly affirm, “Remove your hand now.”

  • Take action. Some people might not take well to an assertive woman. For example, snide remarks might be made. My question to you is, “Who is more important to you, you or them?” If the answer is you, stand by your position. If you think others are more important, then why did you read this blog to the end?…

 
 
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach who believe we are all deserving of strong emotional boundaries. I can be reached at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With love & compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com

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HOW TO ASSESS ONE'S OWN INTEGRITY

If there were 1,000 eyes constantly looking at you…

 

  • Would you yell at your children for not finishing their homework on time?

  • Would you give your spouse the cold shoulder for not taking out the trash?

  • Would you binge on potato chips or self-deprive through a 500 daily calories diet?

.
Many people, including me in the past, would answer no to one or more of these questions.
 
And yet,
 

Many of us might still behave out of integrity when

we think no one is watching… 

 

Why is that?

 
 
 
Me? I used to be obsessed with perfectionism. Things had to go my way, my way only.
 
This meant… homework had to finished at a specific time or else… trash had to be taken out every day or else….
 
The more and more things I believed were not going my way, the more and more I became agitated, anxious, angry. If unable to turn my negative emotions onto others (blame), I turned onto myself, either binging on potato chips or ‘eating’ 2 coffees that day….
 
Silly, isn’t it?
 
Through massive self-awareness efforts with my mentor, I have come to understand I was deeply out of integrity because my want for perfection was massively associated my want for external approval.
 
I was one of the greatest bullshitters on earth! Holy Shit!
 
Why?
 
Because I had bullshitted myself into believing my want for perfection was making me a person of integrity!
 
As if perfection and integrity automatically go together?
 
As if the want for perfection is ‘reason enough’ to never question one’s own integrity?
 
Like I used to blame, “Other people are always the problem, not me!”
 
O dear!
 
Sounds familiar?
 

At times (many actually), I told myself I ‘had to’ behave out of integrity because…

  • I wanted my children to have the best education! Somehow, yelling and education went together in my head?

  • I wanted to have the best relationship with my spouse! Somehow, cold shoulder and love went together in my head?

  • I wanted to have the best relationship with me! Somehow, making myself emotionally / physically sick and worthiness went together in my head?

 
Once I became more accepting that I was deeply out of integrity, I asked myself,
 

What is integrity?

 
And I have found,
 

Integrity is doing what is rightful, 

even when there is zero personal reward.

 
 
 
Mmmm… looking back at my past behaviours…
 

  • What was the pay-off for yelling at my children? I got to control them.

  • What was the pay-off in giving my (now ex) spouse the cold shoulder? I got to prove myself  ‘right’, the ‘I am better than you’.

  • What was the pay-off for mistreating myself? I got to prove my father right, the ‘I am a piece of shit’.

 
I don’t know about you, but…
 

I see with my own two eyes now,

nothing great comes from being out of integrity with the self.

Do you agree?

 
 
In light of this,
 

How does one become more IN INTEGRITY with self?

 

  • We do what is rightful no matter what. If yelling at children in front of strangers is not something you dare do in fear of perhaps being confronted, then refrain from yelling at others or your self behind closed doors.

  • We accept 100% responsibility for our actions. If you chose a spouse who could not care less about the trash, either happily take out the trash yourself, stop bitching, or leave him/her if trash is a deal breaker for you.

  • We give true feeling information, we are honest with self and others. If ‘monsters’ from the past are not dealt with emotionally, how honest can anyone possibly be with themselves, never mind others? This one has been and continues to be a true eye opener for me…

  • We state our emotional boundaries clearly, what we need. As Socrates said, “Know thyself.”

  • We express our truth effectively without beating around the bush. When it comes to integrity, clarity is everything. It is my strong belief (born out of realization), there is nothing like vagueness to derail one’s integrity.

 
Think about it…
 

Integrity is doing what is rightful 

even when there is zero personal reward,

even when no one else seems to be watching.

 
 
I trust you have found value in this article. My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach who assists her clients in coming from a place of deep integrity within themselves. I can be reached at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With love & compassion,
Anne
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
 

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GOING TO THE ROOTS OF HAPPINESS

Happiness is such a big word, don’t you think? I mean, what does happiness truly mean anyway? 
 
Searching for the roots of happiness, I asked myself,
 

“Where does happiness come from?”

 
 
According to the French Dictionary of Etymology (history of words),
 

Bonheur comes from the latin word augurium 

which means

divination, enchantment, foreboding, forecast, interpretation, omen.

 
 
WOW!
 

Who knew happiness might be perceived as intuitive projections 

cast onto people, situations, or things?

 
 
HOLY BURNING SHIT!
 
Maybe this is why some relationships call themselves happy’ while being massively co-dependent? As one person enchants the other to make them happy, to fill a cup they might refuse to fill by their own?
 
MMMMM….
 
I know, I know… it may sound harsh what I am saying right now, but…
 

Isn’t it what projections do? 

Cast a judgment spell onto another 

about what is lacking within one’s own self? 

 
DAMN!
 
Let me share something with you.
 
In the past, when I said, “You are my everything, you make me so happy!”  I did not know I had an emotional hole within that no person, money or thing could ever fill. As a result, I have kept others deeply prisoners in my life, casting them to play small, all in the name of ‘happiness’.
 
Maybe this is why, for the old me, happiness never seemed to last long, for I was constantly looking for the next happiness ‘fix’. Maybe you can relate?
 
Think about it….
 
If someone is to say, “I predict/want you to be happy.”, how reliable would you believe their omen to be, coming from someone with an emotional hole within to start with?
 
HOLY CRAP!
 
Maybe the French got it wrong?
 
So I turned to the English…
 
I guess there is nothing like an old Oxford English to determine the roots of happiness…
 
Can you imagine my surprise and laughter when I found out that,
 

The English stole the happiness word from the Vikings! 

 
BLOODY HELL!
 

Hap is a Norwegian word meaning luck, 

which means

happiness is luck or being lucky.

 
Now, what kind of luck were the Norwegian referring to? Lucky in bed? Lucky in finances? Lucky in war? Lucky in love?…
 
I don’t know about you, but for me,
 

To leave happiness to chance, 

specifically to the randomness of others, 

is not called happiness; it is hell!!!

 
Because, like you, I care deeply about my own happiness, I went digging with the Chinese.
 
Maybe Confucius can shed some light as to what happiness might actually truly be about?
 
In Chinese Mandarin, the word happiness translates into 开心 (kaixin)
 
开(kai) means to open widely. 开 indicates the beginning AND continuation of something. 开 also indicates the capacity of something.
心 (xin) means heart, feeling, intention, centre, core.
 
Based on an ancient Chinese secret maybe,
 

Happiness is 开心, the act of opening our heart widely, 

so we can feel and continue feeling our heart 

deeper and deeper 

at the core of our being. 

 
HOLY MAGIC BEANS!
 
I love this explanation, because this means
 

I AM 100% responsible for my OWN happiness.

 
This means,
 

  • Happiness is never about other people, situations, or things.

  • Happiness is never about luck or feeling lucky.

Happiness is solely about feeling our own open heart 

at the core of our being.

 
Therefore,
 

I AM happy because I AM

 
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach who loves languages for the insights and wisdom they provide beyond the words. I am also an expert on happiness who can be reached at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With love & compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com

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THE LESSON BY THE OLD MAN WITH THE RABBIT

His eyes fascinate me, two white eggs with two brown pancakes in their middle. Every time he looks at me, I feel transported inside the world of an innocent child, perhaps confused by how many years seem to have flown by him. His face, a maze of zigzagging lines, looks like a race against time. The more I look at him, the more I want to know the heart behind the beggar I see on the street.
 
Unlike many other pedlars perhaps, he does not verbally ask directly for money to me. He usually leaves a hat or an empty cup in front of him and silently waits. For a while, I even thought he was mute…
 
On some days, I notice him holding a big fluffy brown rabbit in his lap. He seems to love his rabbit very much and the rabbit seem to reciprocate greatly by snuggling its nose deeply inside the old man’s open jacket, maybe to hear their uniting heart beat?
 
As the old man pets his rabbit in long rhythmic strokes, I notice there is no cage for the rabbit and no leash. Amazing, considering we all live downtown where sirens are blared, buses breaks loudly, and passerby talk on their cell phone.
 
Today, though, something happened to break ‘our’ routine. A great gift was given to me. As I was about to enter my favourite coffee shop, the old man suddenly appeared behind me and asked softly, “Can you buy me a cup of coffee?”
 
Startled, I jump. How did he get here? Holy Molly, he can talk! As I look inside his two white eggs with two brown pancakes in their middle, I feel my heart fill with the desire to know him.
 
I reach inside my coat pocket and retrieve a bunch of spare change. I am unsure if I have enough to buy an extra cup of coffee for him, so I impulsively say no, then wishing inside I had brought more money. Peaceful, he says okay and starts standing in line by my side, as if money was a non-issue.
 
I do not know what to think. I put my hand inside my coat pocket again and I find not only an extra $2, but also a free donut prize I had won the day before. I smile at the old man triumphant. “I have extra money! I can buy you that coffee after all!”
 
The old man smiles at me as if he had been expecting this result.
 
Waiting in line, I ask him how he is and he smiles at me asking. I ask him how his rabbit is and he answers his rabbit is fine and at home. I ask him if he lives in a centre and he answers yes. At one point, I mention his new haircut that I believe suits him tremendously and my, o my, he blushes like a young child, passing his bony hand through his balding greying hair.
 
The whole time we are talking, he first looks into my eyes before answering any question. He reminds me of The Fiddler on the Roof. Any moment, I imagine him erupting in a traditional dance with his arms wide outstretched open.
 
We get to the counter and I take a step aside. I ask him to order his coffee as he likes it. Then I give him the coupon for the free donut. His face lights up like a Christmas tree. After I pay for both of us, I realize I am left with spare change close to $2????
 
I do not get what is happening, but I take all the left-over change and give it to him saying, “For whatever you need…” The two white eggs with two brown pancakes in their middle smiles at me in acknowledgement.
 
I watch him choose to sit alone at a table. Wrapping his two hands around the warm coffee cup, he closes his eyes, a peaceful smile spreading on his face. I feel the same smile spreading on mine…
 
In our everyday interactions, we never fully know who we are impacting. My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach whom you can reach at anne@walkinginside.com 
 
With love & Compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com

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BEING DECENT, WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

As a child, many big words were thrown at me without mostly any real explanation from the adults saying them. Somehow, in my house, the mere fact of using a word meant we ‘automatically’ understood it and all the meanings it entails. Yes, we were probably playing the game Heroes of Words and Victims of Meanings. Can you relate?
 
When I finally started questioning everything, I mean everything, I became fascinated with how much I have been taking for granted all these years or, even worse perhaps, misunderstood partially or completely.
 
For example, let’s take the case of decency.
 

What is decency? 

 
Without online googling it or looking into a physical dictionary, what is decency to you?
 
 

What does decency entail?

 
 
When I was a small child and my mother said, “Can you please be decent?”, she was asking me to go put on some clean clothes because company was coming.
In this context,
 

Is decency looking good for others?

 
 
When I was angry and swore a ketchup storm just like my father, my mother often yelled at me, “Can’t you just be decent!”
In this context,
 

Is decency suppressing one’s emotions to appease others?

 
 
When I felt wronged in my marriage and wanted a ton of explanations, my sister suggested to me, “Just be decent and walk away quietly, ok?”
In this context,
 

Is decency walking away quietly from conflict?

 
 
When I asked an ex-partner to be decent and stop 100% calling me day in and day out after the break-up,
In this context,
 

Is decency asking someone to ignore or deny a person/situation completely?

 
 
I can go on and on with examples on how the word decency has been found thrashed around so easily, at least by/with me.
 
Let me ask you,
 

What is it about the word decency that 

so many of us are willing to dip it in all kinds of sauces 

to possibly trigger a desired behaviour from others?

 
For
 

When we use the word decency, 

who are we truly looking at? 

Others or Self?

 
 
When I started questioning everything, I mean everything, I realized I was using the word decency to mainly control others. In a way, I was the biggest hypocrite there was, because I now know that
 

In order to 

know and express what decency is,

we must first experience living it for and from our self.

 
Sooo, going back to my shared examples from the past that have helped form my conditioning….
 
»When my mother asked me to be decent (wear clean clothes in front of guests), maybe she wanted me to honour myself by being polite?
 
»When my mother told me to be decent (stop swearing a ketchup storm,) maybe she was asking me to honour myself by having good morals?
 
»When my sister asked me to be decent (stop demanding explanations to prove I was right), maybe she was suggesting I honour myself by living my own truth?
 
»When I asked an ex to be decent (stop contacting me), maybe I wanted to learn how to honour myself by being respectful?
 
 
Do you see now how,

Decency can possibly relate to honouring our self by 

being polite,

adhering to self-loving moral standards,

upholding our truth,

exuding self-respect,

 
 
When I look at decency from this angle, I cannot help but smile how
 

Decency seems to encourage feel good feelings about the self

so we can truly honour others.

 
Therefore, next time someone is asking you to be decent, perhaps ask them what feel good feelings are they trying to elicit within themselves. I have found out that, as I get decent with myself, it is becoming increasingly easy to honour others.
As James Allen once said,
 

“So within so without.”

 
With love & compassion,
Anne
 
Thread Reality is a blog series provided by Walking Inside Resources Inc. Its purpose is to explore a reality thread between seemingly ‘non-related’ life experiences.
 
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach. For a complimentary 15 minutes consultation, I can be reached at anne@walkinginside.com
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
 

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WHERE DOES IGNORANCE COME FROM?

I am curious… I mean, where does an infant like Ignorance come from? It is a good question, isn’t it? Worth exploring, don’t you think?
 
For many of us, eating pie can be a comforting food while pondering life. So pull up a chair, grab a slice of pi, and let’s see together where Ignorance might come from.
 
“Where does Ignorance come from?” I casually ask its mother, Know-It-All.
 
From my own dealings in the past,
 

Know-It-All is like an egg, a fragile entity, who most often cracks and takes offence easily.

 
Know-It-All squints at me reproachfully. “Who asks stupid questions like this? Everyone knows where Ignorance comes from!”
 
Wrong approach, looks like.
 

With Know-It-Alls, I believe a compassionate approach is a most likely viable solution.

 
I smile at her kindly and rephrase my question. “I apologize for asking a question that is perhaps clear for you. Let me rephrase, What was going through your mind when you decided to have Ignorance?”
 
She puffs on her cigarette, her third addiction in a row that morning. “I just wanted my child to look like me, you know, to have my savoir-vivre (know how to live) and savoir-faire (know how to do). She flicks her hair backward through a haze of smoke.
 
I clear my throat. “May I ask, who is Ignorance’s father?”
 
“Ah! Don’t get me started about that bastard! I am so angry with him!”
 
My eyes grow bigger. Who can she be talking about?
 
“That Curiosity! He thought he was better than me! He kept asking me questions over and over, stupid shit like ‘I really want to know you.’ You tell me, who talks like this?”
 
I so want to answer, “Conscious people do!” but I choose to remind myself to stay clear of rebuttals with Know-It-Alls, simply because they own the pool of right answers apparently.
 
I go fishing in deeper waters, like many curious people do. “Is Curiosity Ignorance’s father?”
 
She looks at me like I have suddenly grown two heads. “Are you insane? No, he is not! At first, I wanted him to be, but I did what was the right thing to do, you know. I went to a non-revealing sperm bank! My baby deserves the best daddy in the world!”
 
This is getting more and more fascinating. Know-It-Alls massively seem to be full of plots and twists…
 
I ask, “Who is the ‘lucky’ daddy?”
 
She ignores the way I said ‘lucky’. I believe this is the main problem with Know-It-Alls, they tend to ignore potentially important communicated data to suit their own beliefs. 
 
“Well, the top sellers were Love and Compassion, but they had conditions! Can you believe it? They require the recipient to be in their heart to truly feel the reflection of them. I mean, who gives a shit? All I wanted was a baby just like me!”
 
I feel for her, this conversation is apparently upsetting her; she is now tossing on her chair, unfocused. I get it for I have found Know-It-Alls often lack skills with how to deal with information provided to them. 
 
“So, who is Ignorance’s father?” I ask again gently.
 
Know-It-All cracks and starts sobbing, “I don’t know, I just don’t know! They said it did not matter and I listened to them!”
 
“Who is ‘they’?”
 
Between hiccups, she answers, “The people… the parents who own the clinic where Ignorance comes from… and the previous clinic owners too, which I was told was their parents!”
 
I am trying really hard to make sense of what she is saying. “So you are telling me you do not know who Ignorance’s father is because you were told once upon a time it did not matter by the parents and those who came before them?”
 
“Exactly! This is why nothing is my fault! Me, I just wanted a baby like me!”
 
 
Based on this short story,
 
 

Where does Ignorance come from?

 

I believe,

 

  • Ignorance comes from anyone who takes offence easily. If a person gets easily insulted to begin with, how secure (knowledgeable of their self) are they truly?

 

  • Ignorance comes from anyone who believes they have all the right answers. If one fails to be continuously curious in life, how deep do you believe is their pool of knowledge about self and others?

 

  • Ignorance comes from anyone who lacks skills in processing communicated information. If one chooses to ignore or deny data in order to prove themselves right, it begs the question, what do they call ‘knowledge’?

 
 
At this point, I would like to share that most of my life, I used to behave like a Know-It-All and I have paid the price dearly for my own Ignorance. Because of my lack of self-examining in the past, I have passed hundreds of false beliefs to my three children. Now, to keep this potential close-mindedness at bay, I am diligently focusing on coming from a place of deep curiosity within me. The rest as they say, becomes history…
With love & compassion,
Anne
 
“It’s all about pie, honey!” is a blog series sponsored by Walking Inside Resources Inc. and dedicated to explore emotional concepts in a context of storytelling and humour.
 
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach, Bestselling Author, and Authentic Speaker. You can reach me at anne@walkinginside.com
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com

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EMPATHY OR ENABLING?

“Put yourself in my shoes!” yelled my 14 year old daughter to me before storming out of the kitchen crying. As I heard her bedroom door slam, I whispered softly, “I am trying, sweetie, more than you might possibly know.”
 
The sale offer for the house had been finalized and I had just announced to my daughter that we were moving downtown, be about one hour away from her school and friends.
 
She was adamant she was not moving. She was determined to finish high school where her two elder siblings had graduated from before her.
 
In the past, when I talked about the house being for sale, she usually became quiet, silent, withdrawn, as if the landscape outside the kitchen window was far more interesting than what I had to say.
 
If I asked her if she was listening to any I was sharing about the house, she often turned her head sharply to me, two “daggers” suddenly “piercing”, and with her lips pinched tightly together, continued being ‘silent’….
….
 
I gather many of us, parents, have had to make life decisions that may have been disliked by our children.
 
So, when a child or an adult says, “Put yourself in my shoes!”, what exactly are they asking us to do?
 
I believe
 

EMPATHY is primarily seeing another person’s 

feelings and perspectives

THROUGH THEIR LIFE FILTERS.

 
 
Therefore, when we are asked to show empathy, we might want to remember to:
 

  • Hold our self in check. If we cannot hold our self in check, if we let our emotions run high, how can we ever be able to tune in without distortion to someone else’s feelings and emotions?

  • Become attentive to what is verbally spoken. Take an active interest in the other person’s concerns. Ask, “What exactly is troubling you right now?” If we are unable to zero in on exact concerns, how is it possible to ever put our self in someone else’s shoes?

  • Listen actively for unspoken emotions. We all know underneath the blanket of anger is a hurt/wounded person. Focus on understanding where the other person’s potential hurt comes from.

  • Visualize and show sensitivity to another’s perspective. Empathy is felt by using someone else’s life filters to relate to their feelings and emotions. In this light, empathy is also known as the gateway to compassion.

 
 
In a situation requiring empathy:
 
⇒What happens if we cannot hold our self in check? We might most likely take on the other person’s feelings and emotions as our own, meaning: their drama becomes our drama.
 
⇒What happens if we are inattentive to what is verbally spoken? We might most likely make up shit about them, meaning: telling the other person what they are supposed to or should be feeling right now.  
 
⇒What happens if we address the anger instead of the underneath hurt? It is my belief we then waste precious time arguing for the shit one party or both people want(s) to be right about.
 
⇒What happens if we use our own filters to show empathy? Then it is not called empathy, my friend.
 
 

At what point does empathy become enabling?

 
It is my belief
 

Empathy becomes enabling when we consistently lack discernment.

 
Since judgment is always about others and discernment is always about the self (what works for us or not),
 
♠When we lack discernment, we are unable to hold our self in check. 
Think about it for a moment….
How can anyone possibly sort out what is ‘mine’ and ‘theirs’ when they are unclear about their own self, what they want, what they need, and/or how to uphold their own emotional boundaries? 
 
♠When we lack discernment, we are unable to pay close attention to what is being spoken.
The proof? How much healthy attention can we give another human being if our head is stuck into our own problems? In my case, very little if any at all.
 
 
♠When we lack discernment, we talk to the blanket of anger and ignore the real person underneath it….
Let me ask you, 
Where is the empathy in doing that?
 
 
♠When we lack discernment, we believe everyone sees our world through our own filters. 
I don’t know about you, but I can call this a whole bunch of names, except ‘empathy’.
 
 
Knowing that 

Enabling is allowing a self-destructive behaviour 

to passively continue taking place,

 
Do you now see now how
 
 

Empathy necessitates a high level of discernment, 

State clearly what works for the self,

 or watch empathy gradually disintegrate into enabling over time.

 
 
I trust you are finding value in this article. My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach who assists her clients in living their life from a place of true empathy. You can reach me at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With Love & Compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com