Is Self Doubt Sabotaging Your ‘Infinite Potential?’

Years ago, I had a beautiful picture hanging on my wall, which I enjoyed throughout my pregnancy. It was called “Infinite Potential,” and it simply glowed with the unfolding of new life within the womb of the archetypal mother. 62c2d25ffc655deb43d309fbc7e921d8

At right is a photograph of Mara Friedman’s original as it appeared in Mountain Astrologer 2003.

Infinite potential is easy to see in a newborn, so close to spirit, so present in the now. But when we want to grow something new in our business, is’s more difficult to see the unlimited potential which lies before us. The spark of something new emerging from our creative centers can easily become overwhelmed by our life experience, our insecurities, our doubts, our fears. We allow these falsities to become limiters of our potential, settling for what we know over what we know we can do.

Together, let’s kick self-doubt to the curb with decisive action. Below, we’ll identify the top 3 serious, self-defeating doubts conscious women tell themselves when the going gets tough, and share “coachable moments” designed to move us on and through.

Self-Defeating Doubt #1: Taking Action is Too ‘Hard’

As a coach, I have a reputation for being able to get people to take calculated risks to grow, to accept on faith the small yet transformational actions which move them from where they are to where they’d like to do.

So I wasn’t prepared when I encountered the up and coming practitioner who said “yes,” but did not set a priority on taking the actions that would generate new business for her practice. Month after month, she kept finding excuses, placing her calling on hold, waiting. The commitment was “too hard.” When I checked in with her at the beginning of this year, 5 years after our first conversation, she was still saying “yes” while her choices were still saying otherwise.

The fact is, it’s hard to grow your business – if that’s what you believe. The economy is bad – if that’s what you believe. And clients are scarce – if that’s what you believe.

Coachable Moment #1: Renew Your Commitment. Move quickly toward realizing your infinite potential by committing fully, making decisions and following through with immediate action on specific tasks. Helping clear space for leaps of faith to occur within your self is one of the greatest gifts a coach can offer.

Self Defeating Doubt #2: Beliefs Cannot Be Changed

Of course, you can choose to change a belief which does not serve your highest and best expression of your life force. How do I know? I’ve done it. I’ve hit the absolute dregs of self doubt, and come back from less than zero in my self worth account.

Coachable Moment #2: ‘Be the Change You Wish to See.’ Here’s how: Write down the negative belief, then reverse it into an affirmation. Take on the affirmation as an opposing, equally true belief. Write or repeat it often. Then, act as though the belief is real to you as though it is already your truth. This effect is what is meant by the oft-paraphrased Dalai Lama statement, “Be the Change You Wish to See in the World.”

Self-Defeating Doubt #3:  I am “not enough”

My friend, Fatma Zaidi, says it well. “To lead is to be the active creative force of your own world so you can serve the larger world.” I couldn’t agree more. But many of us don’t realize that we are enough, just as we are. The key to infinite potential in one’s business as an expression of our higher self comes directly from the ability to reach out to others consistently and offer meaningful support for their journey. Being in service is not about you, it’s about humanity and honoring the humanity of your client. This one simple, heart-centered action of reaching out in support is the first rule of feminine leadership.

Coachable Moment #3: I already have everything I need. As a feminine leader, choose instead to reframe your entire situation and your response to it. By changing your mindset, moving your body, and addressing underlying beliefs and perceptions that are holding you back, you can grow your business, create new, sustain-able economy, and attract plenty of new clients. Sharing your experience to support the growth of others exemplifies the right relationship needed to create and manifest infinite potential through our business.

Thankfully, each of us gets to choose which beliefs we hold. May those you choose as your own serve the realization of your infinite potential.

So be it.

Sherri L. McLendon, MA, is a conscious business coach, magazine columnist, marketing public relations and content strategist with Professional Moneta International, http://www.professionalmoneta.com. (c)2016, Sherri L. McLendon, All Rights Reserved. Reprint with credit.

The Value of a Simple List

Life is too short to ignore that which brings us joy. We deserve to engage with our hearts within the context of our lives. This core belief points directly to the value of a simple list.

A list means the path is opening before our eyes. The words that come to us immediately, fleetingly, are enough. Deeply insightful opportunities await. An array of ideas, from which we can choose.

Elegant by way of its simplicity, a list means our best is always good enough. A simple list affirms that we already carry the knowledge we need to move our soul’s purpose forward in the present.

Here are 23 ways that I bring consciousness to the art of simple listing to:

  1. Focus attention for manifestation
  2. Brainstorm anything
  3. Yield a set of finite results
  4. Explore a thematic approach
  5. Establish the realm of possibility
  6. Narrow a range of options
  7. Reinforce positive potential outcomes
  8. Function as a checksheet
  9. Identify problems or pain points
  10. Track work flow by process and team member
  11. Keep myself in “Choice”
  12. Explore potential solutions to a problem
  13. See fears and blocks
  14. Affirm positive beliefs about self or situations
  15. Identify next steps or options
  16. Render big ideas more manageable
  17. Know what is sufficient
  18. Exhaust a topic
  19. Examine probable scenarios
  20. Consider the road less traveled
  21. Establish group mind for collaboration
  22. Yield unforseen insights for individuals
  23. Move forward with ease and clarity

A simple list, once created, can be:

  • Ranked
  • Checked off
  • Circled “best of”
  • Step by Step
  • Categorized
  • Prioritized
  • Tasked
  • Assigned
  • Shared
  •  Chronological

One I have a simple list, I use it as a proactive, living, creation tool to activate the next steps in my heart’s desires while on my entrepreneurial journey. Here are 5 things I do with my lists:

  1. Transfer the actionable items to my calendar
  2. Make optimal choices for future action
  3. Rule out options that have low return on investment
  4. Make decisions based on pros and cons
  5. Generate new knowledge

For me, the value of the simple list is that it ultimately establishes order out of chaos, to find silence in the chatter, to capture our thoughts with immediacy, and systematically make sound decisions.

What are the ways you value the simple list?

Sherri L. McLendon, MA, is a presence based marketing public relations pro, conscious business coach, and lead content strategist with Professional Moneta International,http://www.professionalmoneta.com.

(C) 2017 BY SHERRI L. MCLENDON, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. REPRINT WITH PERMISSION.

A Call to Wholeness: Solar-Lunar Pathways to Evolutionary Change

The old, patriarchal paradigm as expressed in the U.S. hinges on ideas of dominance and difference. It’s a highly destructive, unsustainable system and many of its citizens’ constant call for a re-evaluation. However, critique itself is destructive. I hope for something less damaging, less polarizing.

This idea of being out of balance, or need to achieve balance, would require moving away from a bilateral model of good-bad, right-wrong, my way or the highway thinking. That is, we shift from an either-or position to one of both-and, according to Howard Teich, Ph.D., a professor and therapist whose work “Solar Light, Lunar Light: Perspectives on Human Consciousness” has begun to deeply inform how I view myself and my work in conscious business coaching.

Generally speaking, Teich tells us that we carry within both solar and lunar archetypes we can retrieve from the collective unconscious (he’s a Campbell and Jung scholar). Whether we identify as masculine or feminine becomes less important than the balanced presence of solar-lunar traits in our psyche. When we activate these traits, he suggests, the results include a range of expanded possibilities for solutions to real-world problems.

In the “out of balance” paradigm, the solar traits of a person who lacks lunar traits is described as ego-driven, dominating and disconnected or isolated from others, abrasive, inflammatory, obsessive-compulsive, perfectionist, authoritarian, rigid and unable to adapt, and cocky. In other words, it’s the “masculine” model, and it’s broken.

In this reality, lunar without solar is described as: self-deprecating and doubting, appeasing others and not taking a stand for values, lenient or lax, lacking in focus and willpower, living in a fantasy world, following the herd, aimless, and a helpmate. In this case, the “feminine” model, and it, too, is fragmented.

Many of us today are resisting these old paradigms, Patriarchal models because they are unhealthy for individuals and the society at large. But individuals who embrace these either-or tendencies are exhibiting traits which stop evolution individually and for the collective. Teich’s work may then be understood as a type of archetypal re-membering, of putting the lost pieces of solar and lunar back together again so we can evolve.

Whether our outer world gender identity is masculine or feminine, each of us with has both masculine and feminine, solar and lunar qualities. If ours is a path toward wholeness, this reintegration of our missing pieces needs to occur.

In this new “achieving balance” paradigm, the solar traits and lunar traits replace the out of balance, gendered stereotypes with a “both this and that” solution.

In the solar, traits we may cultivate include: confidence or the courage to enact our ideas, strength in our convictions and a willingness to take action; responsibility, a desire to achieve and maintain high standards, orientations toward goals, and a sense of self that’s powerful, structured, and carries conviction.

The lunar traits co-exist alongside the solar, complementing the active elements while covering the different ground. The lunar traits we may wish to cultivate in the search for wholeness and balance include a willingness to admit limitations or mistakes, cooperative and collaborative endeavors to achieve results, empathy, the ability to connect the dots, to fail and be vulnerable. The lunar realm is visionary, compassionate, flexible, receptive.

Ultimately, Teich’s view of the solar-lunar archetype and its effect on consciousness is co-creative, asking each of us to participate in the creation of new reality. This present time  requires that we reject polarization as “unnatural.” Instead, we may choose to integrate and prepare for an initiation into a new mode of consciousness through specific types of actions.

The Act of Naming

“How we name and describe ourselves, how we tell our stories, shapes our intellectual consciousness as well as our emotional lives,” says Teich.

Whether recounting family history, sharing our experience, or watching television news broadcasts, the stories that we hold as true shape our thoughts and feelings. We are individually and collectively responsible for the stories we tell, the mythologies we reinforce, and the stereotypes we perpetuate.

The Act of Initiation

Women’s mythologies should perhaps be at the forefront of the discussion of initiation. The women’s movement is often described in “waves,” but may also be understood as a recurring pattern of initiation cycles which find their source in original archetypes.

“Culture can repress an archetype, but it cannot kill it,” Teich writes. “The archetype will return with a vengeance and burst forth with renewed strength.”

Certainly, today, the day after the inauguration of a President who brags openly about his deeply objectionable treatment of women, the archetypes of women warriors and sovereigns burst forth with a vengeance and renewed strength. As I write, women are pouring onto the streets in hundreds of cities across the United States to protest the unmistakable and omnipresent War on Women.

The Act of Relating

In Western culture, there is a tragic “disdain of the solar feminine, in how a woman relates to herself, to other women, and to men,” Teich writes.

The maltreatment of women on the basis of gender or gendered identity is perhaps the greatest tragedies of our time. This once great nation now falters, its future in the hands of a patriarchal figurehead the citizens will likely refuse to follow. In personal, political and professional arenas, I believe our greatest trials are now our greatest opportunities for triumph.

May each of us claim our wholeness and strength for the journey ahead.

Sherri