Have You Ever Felt That You are a Magnet for Difficult People?

For most situations in my life, I would be willing to say that I don’t blame other people for things that happen to me. I’ve managed to survive divorce without making it all someone else’s fault.  I’ve managed to grow up without feeling I’m entitled because of something my parents did or did not do in line with my expectations.

I have been willing to go the extra mile in work or projects where I truly wanted to succeed, without expecting anyone else to tow the line for me. I have basically tried to take ownership of my life.

However, I have continually been challenged in my thinking regarding ‘difficult’ people in my world, due to a longstanding false belief that their impact on my life has more to do with their issues than with mine.

Since I coach and facilitate groups around creating healthier relationships and healthy boundaries, I have finally come to realize that difficult people are the sandpaper God allows into my life to smooth out my rough edges.

If I am looking at the actions or behavior of others and making excuses for the way I react to them, I am not “getting it”. I have not been afforded the opportunity to order every piece of my environment so that it is perfected for my convenience. There are places inside my soul that need to be healed from expectations I’ve had that the world revolves around me and my comfort. Tough lesson. Much needed.

My grandmother often said “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me”. Meaning that after I’ve observed the attitudes and reactions of a difficult, angry, controlling, irresponsible or otherwise annoying personality, and I continue to allow it to go on in my life unaddressed, this is something I am responsible for.  If you are standing on my toe and I’m too “scared, embarrassed, fearful” to find my voice and tell you, is this really your problem?

I am learning that the voice that speaks for me is and should be ONLY my own.  If I expect you to protect my feelings, talents, emotions, ideas etc. and I do nothing to communicate my hurt feelings when you trample them, how is this something that you can be held responsible for. If you ask for truth and I gloss it over with the “oh no, I’m fine”, how are you supposed to know? If I am intent on faking ‘fine’, I am choosing to ‘accept’ the behavior and actions of someone with whom I may need to find the courage to have that difficult conversation I have been avoiding.

Often, I have witnessed people, years after a relational breakdown continue to speak about how the person did such and such to them.  They recount and relive every detail as though they are still living it.  All the while, holding the other party fully responsible. Never coming to the realization that if it was a continual process, they were partly responsible for enabling it to continue as long as they did. How tragic, because this behavior impacts future relationships and hinders forgiveness and the ability to move on from the wounds.

While some recognize the truth in “we have seen the enemy and it is us”, many do not realize that enabling a relationship to continue without addressing issues that have hurt and wounded us is very self-destructive. Somehow they manage to relieve the guilt by blaming the other person for being so difficult, controlling, angry, threatening yada yada yada.  When in reality, all along, confrontation was necessary.

We excuse our challenges by saying that we dislike confrontations.  With tongue in cheek here, I ask, which do you dislike more, confrontations or having someone trample all over the things you value and feeling powerless to do anything about it? If we are not pro-active to protect our peace and calm, who else will be?

The ‘blame’ game, which is me believing that my reactions are somehow someone else’s fault or responsibility, only keeps the cycle of chaos going. The relationship doesn’t heal and neither can I. Taking responsibility and ownership of what we choose and what we allow into our lives, goes much farther in getting us out of destructive cycles.

God gave us free will and the ability and strength to manage our lives. We must own up to the responsibility of saying, “if it’s to be, it’s up to me” when it comes to using our voice to establish safe limits on what we will allow into our lives and what we will eliminate from our lives.  No one can do this for us.

We alone know the impact someone else’s words or actions have on us and we have the right and responsibility to calmly make them aware of our feelings around their actions. This provides the greatest opportunity for the relationship to move through the painful or awkward phase and into a breakthrough where it can be restored, often to a closer, more intimate bond. Breakdowns and places where we are most resistant are often the places where we will have the greatest breakthrough.

Even if we are unable, at this point, to get the relationship back on track, we can be free of the control we allow it to have over our lives when we choose to forgive. Forgiveness is something we do for ourselves. The other person may not even be aware of our choice. I’ve often heard it say that choosing not to forgive someone, which isn’t saying that what they did was okay, is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. Never gonna happen. What I do know from my own experience when going through the divorce of a 19-year marriage is that not forgiving someone basically gives them free rent inside my head.

If you don’t want to continue to get what you have always received, you must change the methods in which you respond to and handle the same issues.

We cannot change or control another person. I can’t say to you, “you will not speak to me this way” and really expect that you will simply season your words with kindness.  A better approach is to say, “if you choose to act in this manner, I will not be present. I refuse to allow myself to be treated this way”.

This seems somewhat scary depending on the significance of the relationship in our lives. However, what kind of relationship is it anyway, if we are merely showing up to be treated poorly?  Distancing ourselves from someone’s outbursts requires them to reflect on the relationship and take responsibility for their actions, if the relationship is important to them.  What if they walk away, you may ask? Well, the sooner you know the better, right?

It is okay to set limits on the way you are treated, how much time you will spend helping another person, and in the commitments you make.  The important thing is that we give and serve from a cheerful heart.  If we do it for any other purpose rather than out of love, we will feel obligated and resentful.

We may be thinking we are actually helping someone, but that simply isn’t true if we have expectations or strings attached to the time or gifts we give.  Giving from a cheerful heart requires that we do our kind deeds from a heart of love and not out of fear of the other person’s reactions.

Freedom to be who we are, requires finding our voice to speak for what we can or can’t do, will or won’t do, what we need, or how and when we desire to give our time or resources to help another person .

It is much better to spend time with someone who wants to help than with someone who is edgy and resentful because they really do not want to do what they have signed on for.  Offer your support out of a sincere desire to serve. Say no when you cannot give without stress or resentment.  Enjoy the difference!

Also remember, if you decline an opportunity and find later than you can get on board, it is much easier to turn your “no” into a “yes” than the reverse. You will truly experience better and safer relationships.  People don’t remember what we say or do ~ they remember the way we make them feel.

Find where you can serve joyously and go spread the joy!

Sheri Geyer is a Christian Life Coach, Mentor, Writer, Wife & Mom

Have You Struggled to Navigate Life Above Average?

I remember the day I made the request to have the “more” of my faith journey.  I was done with living a life of mediocrity.   Inside of me, a candle was lit with a desire to know and experience God’s love … this became the transforming force in my life.

When I began to internalize the nature of God’s love, I came to understand that it is constant, consistent and unchanging.   This truth began to empower me to be transformed from the inside out.  It gave me confidence in areas that I had only known insecurities.

As I surrender more areas of my life, He continues to develop my character so that I can become all I am meant to be. I have found it to be easier to extend love to others and replace my old habits of being judgmental.  As a result I am being transformed and empowered to live a life of balance:

-I have overcome many of the fears in my life, not by avoiding them, but by trusting God to be with me as I face them.

– I have learned to simplify my life and utilize what I have, where I am, and what I need to learn, rather than fret and worry over what I don’t have or may be missing.

– In relationships, I am learning through humility to value others as God does.  Love, for me is the commitment to the welfare of another.  I simply make the effort to treat others as I would like to be treated.

– Through surrender, I have learned dependence on God.  His “yes” to seemingly simple requests provides assurance of His care for the details in my life.   Even the “no” answers now bring a peace in knowing that God is protecting me for a season or that He has something better in store.

– Even when I “blow it”, He brings light to areas that I need, when I allow His truth to expose the darkness in my soul.

– I am learning that anchored to Him I can live at peace, safe and secure, although chaos may be all around me.

– Prayer strengthens, renews and refreshes my soul.  It is where I gain courage to walk this journey and strength to endure what I don’t understand, and the patience to wait.

-I journal and relinquish all of my hurts, fears, anger, and disappointments.  In being emptied out, my passion for life is rekindled …

-Everything that I have experienced is a part of who I am today and the ability I have to become a source of hope and comfort to others.

Sheri Geyer is a Christian Life Coach, Realtor, Writer, Wife & Mom

Have You Ever Felt Unable to Leave the Past, in the Past?

Do you ever struggle to make the decision to let go of the past? If it wasn’t such a great thing ~ why continue to visit or, worse, camp out there? If something triggers a past hurt and it feels “bad” recognize that there are wounds that may cause you to walk with an emotional limp for a season, but the effect of the experience can change if you choose to allow it.  Truly when we can look back and laugh at our experiences, they have become our education.

The only way we can overcome our fear of being hurt again, is to recognize these fears are attached to us only as much as we are anchored to our past. We can face tomorrow because the ONE who led through the darkness is still here holding our hand every time the memory arises.  So, just like someone learning to walk again after a terrible accident, choose to simply get up, show up and do the best you can with what lies before you.

Once you allow the shackles that have anchored you to the past to fall off, they will no longer define you. We can grow stronger and better because of the things we’ve experienced and the lessons we’ve taken away.  At the end of the day, we may have a few scars, but all the wounds will heal.  Refuse to allow challenges to become excuses. Cease trying to control what you are unable to change and eliminate the excuses that prevent you from changing the things you can!

 Embrace the Past, Then Release. The decision to cut anchors continually gives strength, confidence and drive to live life free and to the fullest.   This will probably be the best thing you ever do for yourself. It won’t bring national acclaim.  Someone looking may not be able to see it. But in the area of weight loss, internally, you’ll drop about a million pounds.

Being bound to the past with anchors from old hurts causes us to feel like we live in a minefield.   If a certain incident happens, it can trigger pain as real and as overwhelming as when the wound was brand new.  We feel powerless to be free.  It can result in our feeling controlled by others who have hurt us.  It weakens the resolve to live life above average.

To fully live out the peace and joy of life, we need to discover the ability to wake up and live and love like the experiences never happened. Yes! It is possible. We need the season of wandering in the desert in life to truly find the direction we needed to be headed in. The decision is simple. The difficulty is in waiting with little or no understanding for life experiences to bring us to a place where we “want to be free.”  We have to learn to let others ‘off the hook’ for hurting us.  We have to confront our own hearts and realize that we have hurt and wounded others, often unintentionally.  I have come to believe that most people have a good reason for doing what they do – even if I don’t understand their reasoning.

Avoid Allowing Issues to Fester

Refusing to let go or confront issues may result in bitterness and resentment. Bitterness is the awful bite of resentment that causes the soul of the person in which it resides to swell up in pain. Not properly dealt with, it can spread throughout the emotional system of the person and begin to harden their heart.  Bitterness is transmitted from person to person in the recounting — retelling or rehearsing — of an unpleasant experience, whether real or imagined.

In allowing this bitterness, we can push away the ones we want and need in our lives. We need people who are safe and responsible in our lives. They help us to grow and to gain value from things we need to face and deal with. Our life choices are the best gauge for whether or not we live joyful, enthusiastic and confident versus sad, depressed and anxious. We can be empowered to do life by design, as opposed to ‘by default’ and truly have a life of significance and purpose.

This happens best in a climate of being thankful to God even in circumstances we don’t understand, for teaching us that He always cares for us and we can depend on Him. Once we master these things, we will never again be shaken beyond what we recognize as something that He is working for good in our lives.

To gain this incredible breakthrough in life, make it a habit to spend quiet time daily in His presence through reading the Bible, an encouraging book or devotional, prayer, journaling or simply relaxing in a comfy place with a cup of coffee or tea.  It is the familiarity in life that brings comfort. Regular routine, special memories, good friends, favorite songs etc.  become our daily therapy to get re-focused during times we are tempted to cave in under stress.

In this time, I have found God to be the greatest counselor, coach, and therapist available at no charge to me.  The cost has been full surrender of my agenda.  The benefits have been a sense of purpose, fulfillment and confidence that each day, each decision, each encounter can bring meaning, vision and sustained change and healing to my life.

Sheri Geyer is a Christian Life Coach, Mentor, Writer, Wife & Mom

Have You Ever Felt Snared in the Busyness Trap?

I now laugh at how busy I used to be. I was serious about my ability to be polished in every area. I got caught up in the trap of busyness thinking I could have it all: the excellent wife badge, world class home manager,  financier extraordinaire, queen bee of business and volunteer warrior. I believed I could do it all, and that this was the path to peace. All I needed to do was keep all those plates in the air!

I was convinced that those who ‘appeared’ to have it all were doing it all, so I wanted to look as good as everyone else. I also believed everything had to be done one way, no shortcuts! What I experienced, however, was a different story. I learned that doing it all made me exhausted. Doing it all cost me relationships with those that mattered most to me. Doing it all caused me stress, loss of sleep and anger when my world was out of my control. My busyness was less productive and more chaotic than I ever imagined.

Becoming less busy was not an accident, but a decision I made intentionally. I made the decision that a busy life wasn’t a life for me. Being a good person, loving wife, mother and friend…that was the life I wanted. Next to that, I wanted the freedom to pursue things I was passionate about instead of the things that weighed me down. 
Until I purposefully left a life of chronic busyness, I couldn’t see how futile it was.

The snare of busyness is that you can be so busy, that you don’t even recognize that you are in trouble. You can be so overwhelmed that you can’t figure out how to change. You can become so accustomedto being busy that you create more work to organize your life so you can be even busier with the hopes of accomplishing more. And, for what? I was miserable and yet trying to create more misery. A catch-22.

You may be caught up in the busyness trap, if…

  • You respond to “how are you?” with “crazy busy” or “busy but good”
  • You spend time worrying about how busy you are going to be tomorrow
  • You get angry when your spouse or others aren’t as busy as you
  • You are up at night thinking about everything you didn’t get done
  • You let people know how late you stay at work or how much you get done
  • You zone out during conversations thinking about all you have to do
  • You volunteer for things you don’t care about
  • You spend time complaining about how overwhelmed you feel
  • You make list after list to make sure you don’t forget anything
  • You regularly eat in your car or on the go
  • You use a phone in the car because “it’s the only time you have to talk”

If you are anything like I was, you are busy because you want to be or because you don’t know how to be un-busy. You are busy out of misdirected guilt because you think if you do enough, you will be enough. When you decide that it is acceptable to create a life-by-design, you can eliminate the thief that busyness can become, and start doing things that matter. You can talk about your meaningful day instead of ranting about your busy schedule. Decide today that you are enough, even if you never accomplish another thing that causes heads to turn. You are still enough!

How to be less busy

  • Be unproductive on purpose
  • Limit the times you check email each day
  • Delete email and toss mail that you don’t need to read
  • Turn your phone and computer off when you aren’t working
  • Turn everything off in the car (except the car)
  • Put your iPad down
  • Help someone
  • Do less, be more
  • Stop trying to keep up, measure up or catch up

While you may think you are making sacrifices for others by being busy, you are likely sacrificing those same relationships you think you are saving. Get real and consider what is most important to you. Then do that first. The rest will wait.

Practice guarding your life from the thief of busyness…

~ Sheri xo

Sheri Geyer is a Christian Life Coach, “Empowering Women to Do Life-by-Design!”  Check out SheriGeyer.com

Are You Tempted to Underestimate Small Beginnings?

If you have ever felt like a charter member of the Start Big – Finish Small, if at All Club, you may feel overwhelmed when you set targets that seem difficult to reach. Regardless of the level of effort – you have options

Taking On More Than You Can Manage

“Think big!” may be the war cry of pioneer business visionaries but, it could be the thing that rocks the boat over in the case of the average Joe.   On countless occasions, I’ve been full of ideas that I’d finally be able to establish a brand new plan or goal and I’d jump out of bed with gusto. But like starting a race without breakfast, I would soon realize the problem was that I would typically bite off more than I could chew and expect quick success and no hitches.  Often, the pain of disappointment left me feeling too burned out to follow through.

Break It Down to Bite-Sized Pieces

My stumbling blocks from where I am to were I want to be seems daunting when I look at the size of the task and how long it may take to get there. I make every effort to choose my “best” options instead of doing more thinking that equates to doing better. By focusing more on the here and now, and not so much or so far in the future, I am able to find a steady pace that works. My take on the tortoise, who may be slower, but wins every time!

Whatever we hope to gain in our endeavors, before we can achieve something in life, we need to decide precisely what it is we want.

  • Be specific in defining what it is you want to achieve.  Knowing what you are looking for makes it easier to find.
  • State why it is that you want whatever it is you desire. Goals are often more “real” if they are written.
  • Decide what is a reasonable length of time to realize your desires. Be realistic but make it measurable so you will have a target at which to aim. I’ve heard it stated, “If you aim at nothing, you’ll hit it every time!”

Once clearly defined, you can break down the entire process.

Here are a few tips to do this:

  • 1. Determine the steps involved. Brainstorm your options. These are the stepping stone towards achieving your end result.
  • 2. Simplify the action plan. Think of the steps as actions. When you understand what actions are needed to achieve your desired result, you can pull these together into a plan.
  • 3. Establish daily and weekly tasks. When you create your action plan, work out a series of targets that you believe are possible to reach on the way to your goal. Keep it simple with many small victories to keep the momentum.
  • 4. Keep on track. The small-scale approach is flexible and allows for instant changes. On a weekly basis, ask yourself what happened and whether you could do anything differently? Keep on tweaking and completing the simple tasks to have the end result well within your grasp.
  • 5. No worries. Don’t focus on long-term. Focus on your daily actions plans and not so much on the end date. Don’t dwell on what’s to come in the future. Like the tortoise, concentrate on one small step and repeat consistently.
  • 6. Resist the desire to biggie-size. We often want results fast and are impatient when it comes to delaying gratification. Though you may be tempted, avoid trying to rush things and bite off more than you can chew.  Refer to the reasons why you want the desired goal. Concentrate on where you are in the journey, and not on what’s next. Reflect on how far you’ve come and what a waste it would be to throw in the towel.

In order for us to grow, we need to allow ourselves to be stretched at times. In most endeavors, if we don’t grow, our plans and goals won’t either. Long-lasting lifestyle change requires an investment of our time and effort, as well as some patience.

The road to achieving great things is much less intimidating when you break down the end result into smaller steps. And absolutely nothing can compare to how you will feel when you finally make it to the place you wanted to be.

Sheri Geyer is a Christian Life Coach, Mentor, Writer, Wife & Mom

What is the Big Deal about Minimalism?

I’ve been writing about the value of simplicity for nearly 20 years.and since you’ve asked, I’d have to say that Minimalism is best described as pursuing the Right Things so that we are able to Focus More on the things we Enjoy Most!

Simply put, it is the identification, and then the continual choice, of living (doing, buying, seeking) ONLY what is essential. Quite similar to a life of simplicity, Minimalism elaborates on the saying, “less is more” to make it a declaration that “less is better.”

I have considered myself a “minimalist” since 1999. Something about the all around scare-tactics etc., of what Y2K may cause, got me to thinking that I wanted to focus on making better and more meaningful choices in my life.

After a divorce in 2003, and armed with a belief that God has and always will have a plan for me that is better than I could ever design for myself, I set out to learn what was most important, most enjoyable, and most aligned with His best for me. My goal was to best utilize what He had taught me in my life up to that point.

Here is what I found:

I have been given the privilege and responsibility to prioritize my life! If I avoid doing it, someone else may step in and take on that role in a way that serves their needs best.  Taking the time to prioritize our life and choices eliminates our being tied and / or obligated to others expectations.

I continually ask myself, whether I am at work or play, “Is this the most important thing I should be doing with my time and resources right now?” It helps me to zero in on what is most important in the moment. If it isn’t important to me at the present time, I  simply choose to redirect my focus to what matters and what will have the most impact on the purpose I am seeking to achieve.

I want to live a life by design, not default. I will do this effectively by learning to master my response to situations and be able to turn things around, as opposed to living like the bow tied on a kite string based on what is happening to me at any given moment.

I don’t want to have it all and I don’t need to do it all. It is imperative for me to first clarify and then be willing to make the necessary trade-offs in order to pursue what is most important to me. One of the things I remind myself when I am struggling to stick with my plan is this: “I choose to NOT trade off what I want MOST for what I want right NOW!”

I have learned that I do not need to be ‘plugged into’ all that is happening either virtually or globally all of the time. Rather I have decided that the most important thing for me to focus on is what’s front and center of my actual world at the present time. I continually find that focusing on the few essential ideas right in front of me is typically more rewarding, and offers greater potential, than the many that may be trying to distract me.

The best thing I’ve learned is when to say no to the nonessentials so I can say yes to the things that really matter. I find it easier not to commit if I’m not certain that I can give 100%. This requires me to have the courage to say no firmly, resolutely and gracefully so that I can say “yes” to those things that I truly value and where I know I can purposefully make a difference.

The effectual pursuit of simplicity (minimalism) is about arriving at a deep understanding of what leads to a happy and meaningful life for each of us personally. It has never just been about sacrificing or getting rid of stuff.

Sheri Geyer hails from Savannah, has a bit of a sassy southern-style, loves Grandma-isms and is known to repeat them often. She is fascinated by sunsets, her fur babies and peach tea. Porch visits, fireside chats and great friends are known to be some of her finest moments. Her most exciting happening currently is that she will be a 1st time Grandma in May of 2020!

Have You Ever Wanted to Boost Your View of YOU?

It’s difficult to always feel great about what you are doing, choices you are making or the ones you have made and the impact you may be experiencing from them. If you don’t always feel the confidence level you would like to have, here are some thoughts for boosting the way you view YOU!

Learn to define success on your terms.  Many of us struggle because we have an inner voice that drives us to a goal of perfectionism. It’s that “I-should-bedoing-something-more” mindset. Often these expectations are programmed into us by family, our environment or culture. We may actually have no idea why we feel that good is never good enough.

Or we may be leaning toward views we hear on television, celebrity news or trends on social media. As you can imagine, most of us want to present ourselves and our lives in the best light. That is a good thing to remember when we read about or listen to others. No one is getting it perfect. Perfection isn’t even a goal to pursue, as it comes from an energy of fear… of failure, of what others will think, of being unworthy….

The goal is to do and be the best that we can… and that is what will boost our confidence level and allow us to feel gratification in the pursuits we undertake. This high standard of excellence (not the illusion of perfection) comes from an energy of confidence…. when we do our best, we don’t need the kudos to confirm that. We know!

Another thing to consider is that we do not have to absorb others’ beliefs and standards regarding the speed that we choose to do life. It’s best to consider what it is that we truly want and act accordingly.

Stand up straight and tall. (Like your mother told you) 🙂  Changing your posture not only changes the way you are perceived by others, but it can help you to see yourself in a more positive light. And it may actually change your body chemisty… increasing testosterone and decreasing cortisol, the stress hormone.

When you begin to stretch regularly, morning and at night, focusing on the neck, lower back, arms and legs, you will begin to crave it because it feels so good and gives you such a great energy boost.

For proper posture, ears need to be above the shoulders and shoulder blades back, with a bit of curvature in the lumbar spine. You will experience a better day which, when practiced consistently, can lead to a better life.

You have more control than you may think.  At times, it may feel that life just happens to us, when, in fact, we create our own reality. The latest scientific evidence indicates that our mindset, good or bad, happy or sad, plays a huge role in how our experiences unfold.

Obviously, there are events beyond our control, however, our reactions to them and how we choose to create the circumstances within our control can help us to feel empowered and build resilience. Much of what we concern ourselves with, may never happen. And if we experience the worst case scenarios, we need our energy and resolve, at that point, to be able to think on our feet and not cave under the emotional stress.

Be aware that building confidence is an inside and outside job. The better you feel on the inside, the better you will feel on the outside, and vice versa.  Consider that the routine you establish for your mornings, will pretty much dictate the remainder of your day. If you take time to have a quiet time of reflection, prayer, meditation, journaling or simply enjoying your coffee or tea before you have to dive into your routine for the day, you will reap it’s benefits throughout your day.

In turn, if you hit the floor running, having forgotten an early meeting, you can pretty much determine that all day it will seem that you are running behind. This adds to your stress, negativity and ability to manage your circumstances. Prepare yourself for your day, even if it means beginning the evening before.

Taking time to exercise, even for 10 or 15 minutes, does more than burn calories and inches. It speaks to you that you believe that YOU are important and it is a good thing for you to focus a little on yourself so that you can be your best self. The time you spend on you will improve the reflection you have of yourself, both in the mirror, and in your mental image.

And, as a result you will not only look but will feel much better.  Being our best, means that we appreciate and value others, and we can do that much better if, we start with loving and valuing ourselves. And, we absolutely reap what we sow!

Sheri xo

Life By Design


Does Your Life Sometimes Feel as Though It’s Squeezed Into a One-Size-Fits-All-Package?

At some point, you may have discovered that one-size-fits-all life is not really the fit you were looking for.

What would it take for you to lay out a life plan, budget, or a healthy lifestyle goal? Or do you shy away from any thought of doing life-by-design, as opposed to ‘by default’. because it seems as if you will be surrendering your rights to a real life. 

Interesting Note: The tortoise won the race because he stayed the course, remained focused, and he never, never, never gave up. He mapped a plan, put one foot in front of the other, and continued to do the same thing until he got where he wanted, and not only that ~ he was the first one there.

The race is not always to the swift, but to the diligent. The one who works and plays smart. You may not have all of the options that someone else may have, but if you take what you have and add to it the skills you need to tweak the areas that can serve you well, and learn to replicate what works, it is only a matter of time until you win. 

Money, education, affiliation or any other privilege can never beat out what pure tenacity and endurance will provide to succeed in the game of life. The only way you win is to find every creative way possible to eliminate your temptation to quit. It worked for the tortoise!

What about a life plan? What ideas are swimming around in your mind that by putting to paper you could craft something that may open you up to greater possibilities toward creating the life you want?

I’m not specifically talking about money here. Having more money doesn’t mean less problems. In fact to the one whom much is given, much will be required. If money was the be all, end all, explain Hollywood to me.  No, it’s much more. It’s not about having what you want. It’s about learning to want what you have. It’s maximizing your potential by maximizing your impact.

You maximize your impact by positioning yourself to develop self-control around the components in life that are of the most value to you. First God, your family, then work, then how you allocate what you have been blessed with.  It requires a plan – so you know where you are headed and have more than a rear view mirror to look at where you’ve been.

Realizing where you’ve been is good – it’s part of getting you where you are. Deciding where you are going and how you will get there is a major step in eliminating things in your life that really do no longer fit where you are headed.

You create your tomorrows by what you dream ~ today!  You have unbelievable potential within. It’s in your thoughts. Your positive thoughts are the precursors to all you can ever hope to achieve or accomplish.

How are you managing these thoughts? Are you content to simply think about what tomorrow can look like? What would it look like to spend some quiet, focused time to consider what your future could be and the One who holds it?

To tap into your internal hopes and desires, consider journaling. It is a very valuable tool that can provide you with some valuable insights as to how to do some necessary planting of good seeds and pruning of unnecessary areas in your life plan to experience the best of life.

If you left Atlanta, Georgia for Seattle, Washington on a road trip, you wouldn’t consider not having a map or gps to chart your route, as well as a plan for the things you want to see.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. Pack your tortoise shell well; you’ll need it to stay the course. Forget about how fast the hare is, don’t worry about the wise old owl. You need only one focus ~ I think I can, I think I can …

Sheri Geyer is a Christian Life Coach, Mentor, Writer, Wife & Mom

Exposing the Source of Being a People Pleaser…

All my life, I’ve wanted to avoid conflict and manage circumstances so that the people I care about will be happy with me!. Truthfully, I have attempted to control this effort by people-pleasing.

As much as appears that people-pleasing is in another’s best interest, it can be manipulative. Seeking the approval of others, as opposed to seeking God’s approval is actually a sin. It’s similar to setting up an idol, and it is not totally honest.

When we try to please people in order to avoid conflict or gain approval (or both), we misrepresent the truth. We change our words, our actions, our demeanor in order to manipulate the outcome. We may withhold information or conceal the negative in order to influence a response, thereby allowing someone to make a decision not based on full disclosure.. 

Frequently, what we are not fully disclosing is our own emotions. We make a way for people to respond to us based on a false presentation of ourselves that we attempt to control. And, then we wonder why when the relationship breaks down.

There’s something empty inside of us that we may believe can be filled by the approval of others. The emptiness is often created by trauma and can be fed by our sensing that we have some level of control in our relationships as long as we keep everyone happy with us. Relating to others to avoid conflict, and allowing them to see a false version of ourselves, causes us to not live authentically.

This emptiness inside can only be filled by God. 

The stress of looking for acceptance, approval and peace at any cost, helped me to discover pride as the root cause of my attempts to ‘keep’ peace. It became evident that I was trying to guarantee an outcome from a place of fear. My inability to feel safe sharing my true feelings helped me to realize it was manipulation and not simply me looking out for the other person.

Reminding myself that I am created in the image of God and called to reflect his glory can free me from operating out of fear of the judgment of others. God doesn’t hide or change Himself for the approval of people or to avoid conflicts. Since God alone is the only one who judges me, it is His opinion that matters most to me. Therefore, I desire that the words I say and the actions I take are pleasing in His sight.

My desire now is to grow into all God has created me to be, by living authentically. When I focus on honest authenticity, demonstrated with kindness and respect, I stop trying to control how other people perceive and value me. The energy previously expended on trying to make everyone happy with me, is now spent loving others honestly with a freedom that allows me to be more present with the ones who are most important to me.

This is a win-win for everyone!

A Simplified Life that Overflows

I’m uncertain as to when or how it started. I think it may have always been present with me. The day my life forever changed….I realized that all I really want is a simple life-by-design!

I am most content in the space of routine and ordinary. It’s here where I recognize the truly spectacular events may be a rainy afternoon and a good book, or a lingering lunch with a friend or loved one where we reminisce about the goodness of God in our lives or the moments that He has given that have taken our breath away.

It’s where my calm lives. I like the ease in managing stress and learning to choose the paths and places that maintain this level of quiet in my life. It allows me to reserve my energy for the unplanned and unexpected moments where calm is a true asset for responding in a manner I will be happy with now and in the future.

The world can be a noisy place with loud voices pushing or driving for me to hustle, to improve, build, strive, yearn, acquire, compete, grasp for more, make a huge impact in everything I do, and make my life count. All the striving for excellence can leave me drained of joy and wondering if I am just not enough.

When I stop spinning and listen for God’s still, small voice, I hear Him whispering for me to ‘cease’ striving and know that He is God. What if I never really amount to anything to anyone, beyond the people who are my primary circle of impact, consistently letting them know they are loved and I would choose them again?

What if life as I have chosen it is good, even amazing, in light of the fact that my heart is fully engaged? What if I simply write as God brings His reflections of beauty to my soul? And what if I have come to accept that the greatest joys and fulfillment come from offering the gifts I have to the community of women I care about encouraging them that bigger isn’t always better?

What if I can simply remind those that I invest in that their gifts and influence are far more valuable than what is understood at the time? What if I simply remain calm and centered and help others to see that they are enough? And, that God in us, provides great hope for others?

What if I just accept that my body is neither big nor small? And I make peace with it and decide that when I lie on my deathbed I will never regret having just been me. What if I rarely dust and mostly maintain order in my home? What if I prepare real food and sometimes buy pizza and after giving thanks to God for all things, I simply enjoy and do not feel guilty?

What if I makes plans and budgets and then occasionally break my own rules and push back against rigidity. Is it really a big deal if I’m not into fancy or expensive things? Or that I like a simple home where I feel safe?

Since leaving the frantic pace of life and learning that I don’t care to keep up, I have found that I deeply desire solitude, calm, an abundance of rest, and swaths of unscheduled time in order to thrive.

Having given up my former state of constantly doing, I have found great delight in sharing my deeply rooted faith, doubts and insecurities, in quiet ways and through genuine relationship. I have some very special women in my life who have guided me to this. Jeff and I haven’t had a fairy tale romance and I follow hard after God to be the wife that will always be for his best. This keeps me humble and I need it! I am a mom who delights in her girls and in knowing they are free to choose their appointments with life. I consider it a special privilege to affirm and support them in their passions!

I seek the Lord often to learn to embrace my limitations and stop railing against them. I am at peace with who I am and what I need and believe it to be an amazing gift of God to walk in this knowledge.

I enjoy a beautiful, quiet, gentle life. And for me, my life overflows and it is Enough!