Books to Read For a Better Marriage

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In the past three months, I’ve had two couples that I’m working with say that they’d like to start a book club with their spouse as part of their connecting routine. 

When we get married, the fact that we will stay married to the same person forever isn’t realistic. The reality is that we are always growing, always changing so we will either grow together or grow apart. When these couples were open to the book club idea in their home, I got excited for them! They’ll be growing together and learning how to be better spouses to each other in the process. 

I’ve always been a reader. As a kid, I read the pickle jar if it was out. My husband on the other hand is not. I think he started reading a book about six years ago. He’s still on page 8. That’s ok. That’s not how he gets his information. So naturally when I suggested this idea to him, he shut it down real quick. But when I asked if he’d consider listening to the audio version while I read the hard copy, now I was speaking his language. So if you’re in the same boat and really want this to be a thing- maybe suggest an alternative like that. 

Here are five books you can use in your marital book club or for your own personal self-improvement. 

1. Attached by Amir Levine and Rachel S.F. Heller

 If you caught Episode 44 of the podcast or if you’ve heard anything about attachment styles at all, you know that your attachment style and the way it shows up in your relationship is literally everything. This book and the workbook companion helps you figure out what your style is, how to break it down and create a secure style so that you can create and keep a healthy marriage. 

2. Love & Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs

 This is another great one with a workbook companion. A man needs respect more than anything while a woman needs to be loved and cherished. If a woman isn’t loved, she can’t respect her man. If a man isn’t respected, he can’t love and cherish her. So what do you do? How do you get out of the “crazy cycle”? That’s what this book is all about. 

3. The Zimzum of Love: A New Way of Understanding Marriage by Rob and Kristen Bell 

I absolutely love this book! It’s a short read, easy to understand and they use stick figures to explain their teachings. Yes, please! This book talks all about the energy between you and your partner. What’s happening when you’re in each other’s space? How do you create a loving, positive environment between the two of you? 

4. The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by Dr. John Gottman

I am in the middle of getting Gottman certified. These are two certifications I am adding to my coaching repertoire from the marriage guru himself. The knowledge he has is absolutely incredible and though I love any and all books he has put on shelves, this one is fantastic at breaking down marriage rules, expectations and teaching what’s healthy and what’s not. You absolutely cannot go wrong with any information from Dr. Gottman. 

5. The Path Between Us by Suzanne Stabile

It’s no secret, I love the enneagram and any other personality test that gives insight to who we are and how we move in the world. At the same time, understanding your partner and how they move in the world is equally as important when you’re in a long term, committed relationship. Understanding your and your partner’s enneagram numbers, as well as how you each move and flow together in health and conflict makes or breaks your marriage. This book is fantastic at breaking it down! 

These are all books I’ve read cover to cover and are all a great start to bettering your marriage. If you have a fantastic marriage already, awesome! I promise, you’ll still gain a lot if you read any of these. 

If you’d like to join a book club that focuses on growth, marriage and offers a bit of coaching on goals, balance, mindset and any of the topics we talk about, please fill out this form. 

Your coach,

Kameran

Does Your Marriage Need More Balance?

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In session a few days ago, I had a life coach client clearly frustrated, burnt out and resentful of her husband. It’s not uncommon, especially in the pilot wife community. She wasn’t getting the help she needed when her husband was home. Working full time, juggling the mental load of running an entire household and taking care of multiple kids under the age of 10, wearing all the hats of being a solo parent. It’s a lot. 

Childcare and household chores are the top arguments in marriages with children under the age of 12 in the house anyway, no matter what professions the parents have. Stay at home parents don’t feel they ever get a break and neither do parents who work outside the home. 

So as my client was talking about how much her husband had stopped helping around the house, quit attempting to help with baths and bedtime routines, never cleaned up, basically grown lazy in his leadership of their family, I asked her two questions that stopped her in her tracks. 

1. Do you clearly ask for what you need? 
2. Do you let him? 

The answer was no. It was also the answer to her entire problem. 

Do you clearly ask for what you need? Or, you assume he “should just know”? This question works for both parties in a marriage but most often, I see wives making the assumption that their partner’s should be anticipating their needs and acting accordingly.

Spouses aren’t mind readers.

Expecting anyone to read your mind, anticipate your needs and move because you telepathically sent them the message isn’t going to work in your favor very well, unfortunately. 

However, clearly asking for help, as hard as it is, is going to make your life a thousand times better! What do I mean by clearly? Well, we assume that by asking our partner to take out the trash, they know we mean now. That’s information in our head that doesn’t get communicated so our partner’s behavior can’t climb the ladder to meet our expectations. We left out a significant part of those expectations. The gap that was then created by that missed messaging was filled with shame, blame, resentment, arguing, anger, etc. 

So instead of saying “Hey, can you adios this trash for me, please?” We add a bit more context to say “Hey, would you mind hauling this trash to the dumpster on your way out the door this morning? I would appreciate it so much.” See the difference? The second example has a time frame you’re looking for and appreciation. The first request leaves a lot of room for error in your partner assumes you are cool with them taking it out when they get around to it. Then you get mad, do it yourself because “apparently nobody gives a crap about your needs around here!” You stop asking for help, start assuming that to have your needs met, you have to meet them yourself and the massive elephant of resentment starts living rent free in your mind and marriage. More context, more appreciation.

Do you let him?


This is a whole tangent I’m going to talk about more in next week’s podcast. But essentially, it’s this. If you ask your 12 year old to fold the towels but he’s never done it before, his “best work” is probably going to look like your laundry has been run through a landfill and shoved in a closet. Not exactly what you had in mind. So you show him how you’d like it done. 

The hard truth is, your husband isn’t your child.

Stop treating him like one. 

Stop micromanaging him to death. 

Stop criticizing his efforts.

Stop enabling him. 

“But he doesn’t fold the towels right.” What is right? Do they fit in the linen closet neatly? Why is your way the “right” way? 

I know, all you enneagram 1s, 6s and 8s are cringing right now at the mere thought of letting your partner screw up “your way”. It’s ok. I promise. Your ego will in fact survive. The lesson for you here is to let them have freedom. The lesson for them is to do it again if it’s not done well the first time. Walk away if it’s too excruciating to watch them do it in twice the time it would take you or in a way that’s different than your own. 

There is gold in letting someone learn from an experience.

In fact, some people have that specifically written in their human design. They must learn a lesson by experiencing it on their own versus having someone enable them by doing what they could do, only in a different way. 

You and your spouse are responsible TO each other, not FOR each other. 

Let them screw up. 
Let them do things in their own time and way. 
Let them handle the consequences of their choices. 
Support them, don’t enable them. 
Learn to manage your own anxiety, over-criticism, and overly high expectations. 
Work on cleaning up your side of the street. 

You might find that nobody dies and nobody cares as much as you do about that thing. 
You might find that your marriage is happier and more peaceful. 
You might find that your partner starts helping more! They feel emotionally safer to help because you aren’t sounding like their mother. 
You might even find that the man of your house starts leading because you’re willing to be lead. 

Part of that balance is that the man’s natural masculine energy is fed so the woman’s feminine energy can soften. 

Everything in marriage is a balance. Both people can’t show up in alpha masculine energy. It won’t work. 
Both partners can’t show up anxious, lackadaisical, defensive, or aloof. There has to be balance. 

If that balance is off kilter, look at what you’re bringing to the table.

Are you letting your partner be who they were fundamentally designed to be? Are you asking for what you need? What assumptions are you making that need to be questioned or communicated?

Make sure to check out the podcast next week for more on this. Also check it out this week as Julie Mennano from IG’s famous account @thesecurerelationship sit down to talk all about attachment styles! It’s an absolute MUST LISTEN to if you’re a parent, grandparent or in a relationship! You can find that episode anywhere you listen to your favorite podcasts just by searching Recognizing Potential Podcast or listen here.

Until then, have a safe and fantastic Labor Day weekend!  

Your coach,
Kameran

Where’s the Ketchup?

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Just after my divorce, I moved to Ft. Worth, TX where I knew exactly one friend from college and his wife. She and I were sitting in their backyard next to their fire pit one night, having a conversation when she told me I was the most “scrappy and resourceful” person she’d ever met. Admittedly, I wasn’t sure if this was a compliment or an insult but as the years have gone by, I realize, it’s probably the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me. 

Working with women and couples, the one thing I hear the most is that wives are exhausted from “doing it all”. The house, the errands, the meals, their job, etc, etc. 

I hear jokes that constantly belittle men by complaining how they can’t find anything if their wife doesn’t find it for them. An example given by many is that they’re standing in front of the fridge asking “do we have any ketchup?”. 

Raising kids and homeschooling, I hear the same things all day long “I can’t figure this out”, “how do I”, “help me”, “can you do this”. Over and over. 

What do all three scenarios have in common? Resourcefulness. 

Do you know the difference between enabling and helping? 

Helping is doing something for someone that they can’t do for themselves- grabbing the box of cereal off the top shelf for the disabled person in a wheelchair at the grocery store, zipping the coat of a 1 year old. Enabling is doing something for someone when they can do it themselves- putting your 3 year old’s shoes on them, making breakfast for your 13 year old, paying off a debt for your mother-in-law or grown child because they’re too lazy to get a job and pay it themselves. 

The brutally honest truth is that we’ve become the helicopter parents and the enabling spouses. We give way less credit to our children than they deserve and hold way more resentment for them when they’re enjoying the freedom we wish we had.

The truth is, the point of parenting is to teach them to be resourceful enough not to need us and emotionally stable enough not to fall apart while simultaneously accepting it when that time comes. 

It’s having our daughter-in-law send us a text of appreciation when her husband looks in the pantry for an extra bottle of ketchup instead of asking if they have any while his head is in the fridge. 

That point starts and the resentment of mothers and wives all over ends at the same intersection on the streets of Delegation Avenue and Responsibility Boulevard. 

If you’re doing the same things over and over expecting a different result, congratulations. You’re literally living out the definition of insanity! Stop! 

Give children chores! Set boundaries with your spouse by saying “I don’t have the time/energy/sanity/brainpower to do xyz.” Ask for help. The only reason women are “doing it all, all by themselves” is because they’re allowing it. They either arrogantly believe they’re the only ones who can do it “right”. Or they thrive on the stress and overload of cortisol while striving for perfection, knowing it will never come. 

As a pilot wife, I hear “well we live in a city where we have no family. I have no help and my husband is always gone.” #metoo Guess what? Where there’s a will, there’s a way. Gym daycare, care.com, make friends with the other moms from your kid’s soccer/baseball team, meetup or peanut apps, church. I could go on for days.

Your husband and children can help out around the house. They live there. It takes the whole team to move the ball of life down the field. There are age appropriate chore charts and lists all over the www. Be resourceful and find one that works for your family! (See what I did there? ;)) 

Instead of rushing to help your kids out, let them struggle a little bit. Ask them questions like “how could you figure that out?” or “where would you find something like that?” Hide a toy under a blanket when your kids are toddlers and let them look for them. Cheer when they find it. Make your 18 month old help pick up toys. If they’re old enough to get them out on their own, they’re old enough to pick them up. Will it be perfect all the time? Absolutely not. However, they’ve got to start somewhere. Our kids can do so much more than we let them do.

Give a man a fish, he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he’ll never be hungry again. The same concept applies to our kids.

I’ve witnessed 2 year olds cracking eggs and stirring muffin batter, 3 year olds putting their own shoes, coat and mittens on, 12 year olds mowing yards and taking out the trash of the elderly in the neighborhood for a little extra cash. Have you let your child try so you know they can’t do it or are you holding them back because of your own insecurities in letting them try? 

On the flip side of that coin, what are you holding yourself back from trying that would propel you forward? Whose coat tails are you holding onto in hopes that they’ll enable you when you can do it yourself? What have you been putting off out of frustration or fear when all you really need is to break the big plan into smaller chunks? How can you figure it out on your own? What boundary or new habit can you set to create more space and sanity for you? 

Creating resourcefulness in our children leads to more mature, resourceful adults who are consequently less entitled, more appreciative and less needy.

They’ll have better work ethic and a competitive advantage for being hired or figuring out how to run their own business. 

How can you be more resourceful in your marriage? If what’s not working hasn’t been working for a hot minute, what do you need to change? What hard conversation needs to be had that you’ve been putting off out of fear or frustration? Is there a book, a podcast, or another resource you can intentionally utilize to change the trajectory of your life? Who can you go to for suggestions on resources they find useful? 

Your children have the ability to do so much more than they think and so do you. 

Your coach,
Kameran

Feeling Rejected In Your Marriage?

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Rejection. That gut wrenching feeling you get when you want something and you’re told no, dismissed, or ignored. It can be embarrassing, humiliating and painful on so many levels. Rejection can start a narrative running in your head that quickly starts a spiral of negativity. 

Most of us have been rejected emotionally before and while that hurts, it can usually be repaired with a conversation or two with our spouse that starts off with “when this happened and you said…., I felt rejected/unloved/unwanted, etc.” to which our partner may clarify their meaning or apologize for the way they responded, triggering your feeling of rejection. 

What about sexually? Have you ever been rejected sexually or are you the one who does the rejecting? 

Being naked in front of someone is the most vulnerable position we can ever be in. Often we use sex as a way to connect with our partner and when we’re asking for sex, we’re asking for that emotional connection. The vulnerability that asking and agreeing to be naked takes also means that when we’re rejected, the wound that comes from that cuts so deep. It hits different than emotional rejection. Not that either of them are more important than the other, just different. 

Sexual rejection knocks on the doors of doubt, shame, guilt, and lessens confidence. The narrative in the head of the one who’s been rejected starts to replay questions like “Am I good enough? Does my partner still desire me? Has our marriage gone stale? Is my partner having an affair? They aren’t having sex with me so they must be getting it somewhere, right? Am I no longer attractive?” Insecurities and self-doubt increase while your emotional and physical value decreases.

Being rejected sexually also starts a vicious cycle that destroys connection. Couples are already not getting enough connection. In fact, the average couple only spends 4 minutes a day alone together. So you’re not having sex so you’re disconnected and you’re disconnected because you’re not having sex. Oy vey! 

So what if this happens over and over and over again? 

Well, we have to look at the intentions behind the rejection. Are they intentional or unintentional? 

Unintentional rejection looks like 

  • flirting all day, sending texts, anticipating the act and then a kid gets sick, there’s an emergency, time management and energetic boundaries aren’t great so you’re left exhausted
  • not being in the mood at the same time your partner is

Intentional rejection looks like 

  • Not being the one to ever initiate sex
  • when your spouse initiates, you say no, not tonight, or give an excuse with no secondary plan to make it happen
  • saying something like “you’re only doing this so you can get sex”, “all you want is sex”, “you’re only touching me so you can get sex”, “you’re such a sex addict”
  • pretending to be asleep or have a headache or that you don’t hear them when they initiate 
  • Now listen, this is not just women or just men being rejected! It’s BOTH. Both parties are feeling the pain of this topic deeply rooted in their core. Also, it’s completely normal to not have the same libido, be in the mood at the same time as your partner all the time, and always be willing and able when your partner says let’s go for your entire marriage. That’s not realistic. What’s not “normal”, healthy or ok is to shame your partner for desiring you, to blatantly ignore their bid for connection, or to be rude, condescending, painful in your rejection or to use sex as a weapon. 

**If you have an issue scheduling sex, you don’t have the whole lesson on how to schedule it right. It’s NOT just putting it on the calendar and going in with it being another to-do list item! It’s intentional and still requires foreplay, connection, and flirting!

So what can you do to have a healthier sex life? 

1. Talk about it. Be open, honest and vulnerable.
What would you never change about your sex life? What turns you on/off? What could you live without? What does your partner do well? What would you like to try that you haven’t before? 


2. Instead of rejecting and going your separate ways (because this only amplifies the disconnection in your marriage), give an alternative. “I’m not really feeling that right now but would you like to cuddle and watch a movie, play a game or sit and talk for a while?


3. Saying something like “I’m really just not feeling it right now but please understand that I’m not rejecting you and I still want you. So what if we make a plan for it on Thursday night date night or Saturday afternoon while the kids are at the birthday party?” Then, on the day you scheduled it, if you were the one to reject your partner before- it’s YOUR responsibility to initiate now.

4. Make it all about them. Marriage is all about letting go of your pride to be selfless and put your partner’s needs above your wants. Please your spouse and fulfill them even if you know you’re not going to get off. 

Of course, these are all options. You’re not going to use all of these in one night and I would suggest rotating through the options as well. These are going to build trust, lessen the blow of rejection and pull the two of you together versus driving you apart. 

You’re rejecting sex but you’re still pursuing each other.

Lastly, make sure you’re handling your conflict and your stress in a healthy way. These two things can be an absolute libido killer! Sex can be a stress reliever but if you are too stressed to get in the mood, that leads to disconnection as well. Conflict that isn’t handled in a healthy way breaks down the marriage, trust, love, and if I haven’t said it enough- emotional connection. By handling both of these in a healthy way, you’re strengthening that connection instead of breaking it apart. 

If you need more ways to build connection- check out my monthly membership that gives you 40 connecting conversation starters, access to the monthly workshop (this month’s is about overcoming resentment- recorded and emailed directly to you), and several coaching videos. 

If sexual rejection has been a topic of conflict for a while now, reach out and get help! I have one spot opening in September. 

If your sex life just isn’t on par with what it used to be, libido, energy, wetness and/or stamina are low and slow, check out this product! It’s a TOTAL GAME CHANGER!

Your sex life can be great! It can be HOT and steamy like it used to be! It can be exciting! I’m here to help you get that back! Sex isn’t everything but it’s pretty dang important in a marriage! 

Your coach,
Kameran

Building Friendship In Marriage

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Remember when you and your spouse first met? You couldn’t wait to see them again, spend time together, and tell each other every detail of your day! The two of you were thick as thieves. 

If friendship is a priority and you have what you’d consider a strong, connected marriage, the way you were then is probably how you still are! If your marriage isn’t so happy and feels more distant and difficult, the friendship you and your partner once had has probably faded or become non-existant. 

The great news is that even if that friendship fire has seemingly burned out, the embers of it are still white hot underneath all the ash. Here’s how to stir them up and get that flame a blazin’ again! 

1. Connection- Get to know each other again!


One of the reasons that friendship is so important in marriage is that it promotes connection, emotional safety leading to emotional intimacy which then leads to physical intimacy. 

If you don’t know your partner for who they are now, you don’t know your partner! I can guarantee they aren’t the same person you married and neither are you! Start asking questions like “how do you like your eggs now?” or “how do you like your coffee/tea?” “What’s one thing you haven’t ever done but always wanted to?”

When we’re in the honeymoon phase of our relationship, so often we can say we like something just because our partner likes it or say something is our favorite because it’s our partner’s favorite. The reality of the situation is we may hate mint chocolate chip ice cream or breakfast tea. So when you’re going through these questions, be open, honest and vulnerable. The more you open up, the more connected you’ll become. If you need help with this, I have a monthly membership that gives you 40 new questions/prompts every month so you never run out of conversation starters! 

2. Daily details- talk about all of them! 


Ever wonder why one person in a relationship wants all the details and one person hits the high points and moves on? Because the person sharing all the details finds connection in those details. The little intricacies of your story mean the most and make the story-telling an experience for them. Don’t leave them out. They help your partner feel as though they are truly a part of your day. 

3. Use all 6 types of Communication! 


One way to have that friendship flame quickly extinguish is by only talking about information (1) like “how was your day”, “what’s for dinner” or “what time is that appointment tomorrow”. The second type that will kill the ambiance real quick is only discussing teamwork (2) things like “who’s job is it to take out the trash, switch the laundry, run that errand or pick up Grandma from the airport”. 


The conversations that also need to be included each week and in some cases even daily are (3) Conflict resolution, (4) Recognizing, responding to and making your own emotional calls. These calls sound like “hey, what do you think about…” or “look at this!”. It may look like a touch of the hand or arm, reaching to hold hands, a certain look. Couples at dinner can bid for each other’s emotional response over 100 times in that one meal. The happiest marriages answer their partners calls 20 times more than in unhappier marriages. (5) Vulnerable Sharing- this sounds like “I’m feeling…”, “One goal I have is…” or “Our sex life….”. It’s important to listen when your partner is sharing a vulnerable moment with you and validate them when they’re done speaking. Validation does not mean you agree with them. It only means you see their perspective or understand why they feel the way they do. This is not the time for you to interject your own feeling or opinion unless they open it up to become a discussion. (6)Intimate expressions. If you’re not talking about it or during, it’s probably not very good. Communicate what you want, how you want it and how to do it better! 

4. Spend Quality Time Together


When you’re married to someone who is gone constantly- (I see you Pilot Wives!) this one has to be massively intentional and most of the time scheduled. Aside from it being many people’s love language, quality time also builds friendship, connection and helps you and your partner engage in shared activities! Did you know that statistically women find connection in conversation while men feel more connected and overall better about the relationship when engaging in a shared activity? Did you also know that this can be watching a movie or show together as long as you’re talking about that show during or after it’s over? My husband and I found all the old Friends episodes on HBO Max and have been laughing, reminiscing and conversating our way through that lately. It’s been super fun! 10/10! 

5. Use the Golden Rule


One of the most important parts of building friendship in your marriage is treating them like your friend. So often we replace our friendship with contempt, criticism, blame, guilt, gaslighting and overall rude behavior. We stop being worthy of respect and/or we stop respecting our partner in general. Would you treat your friend that way and expect them to keep being your friend? Probably not. So, expressing yourself in a healthy way, communicating thoroughly and kindly, using healthy conflict resolution and following the previous four steps is key to having a fulfilling, long lasting marriage with your best friend! 

If this is a struggle for you and your partner, you want it but you just can’t seem to get on the same page- reach out. I’ve got one spot open for private couples coaching and two spots left for private individual coaching. Reply to this email when you’re ready to put your name on one of those spots! 

Your coach,
Kameran

Here’s the #1 Thing Keeping You Stuck!

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You haven’t showered in 4 days or eaten more than 1 meal in over a week because “there’s no time”. Too many decisions to be made have caused your brain to basically shut down to anything that isn’t dire to the present moment. The struggle to figure out everything and yet want to crawl back into bed and do nothing is a contant battle. Sound familiar? 

Three out of my five clients are going through the exact same thing right now. So I thought well, if it’s plaguing them, it might be plaguing you too. So here we go. 

There are five things that keep people from accomplishing their goals. The first is that there are no goals set in the first place. If you don’t have specific, measureable, attainable goals written out and put into place, you’re setting yourself up for massive overwhelm and failure. 

Start with why. If you haven’t read the book by Simon Sinek that has this exact title, it’s a fabulous read and a great place to start! Why are you waking up in the morning? What are you trying to achieve? Set the goals. Write them down. Break them down into 3 year, 1 year, and 90 days, then even further into what you need to do daily and weekly to make them happen. If you need help with this, email me at coaching@recognizingpotential.com. I’ll do a 1 hour session with you and we’ll have you on your way with a specific action plan that works for you. 

The next thing that keeps people from achieving greatness is not that they don’t have time, it’s that they don’t have time management. 

When you wake up in the morning, do you know exactly what your day is going to look like? Do you know what time you’ll be eating your meals, showering, going to the gym, connecting with your spouse and intentionally building the life you want? If you questioned any of these or said no, there’s your reason for not having what you want. The hard truth is that you aren’t intentionally making time for it. 

See, if you say yes to your job and build that into your day, yes to running your kids to and fro, yes to a grocery pickup, cooking meals and an episode or four of your favorite show but have no idea what connection question you’ll be asking your spouse, what time you’ll be engaging in alone time or what that will look like, you’ve chosen everything you’ve said yes to over your marriage and your goals. Saying yes to something means you’re saying no to or neglecting something else. 

So how do you make time for the important things? 

Scheduling. 
I use this planner (not an ad, just a planner I really really love!). I time block. I also schedule according to my cycle. Ladies, if you are not doing this- let me tell you. GAME. CHANGER. This will straight up dominate your goals. 
The fact of the matter is that if you’re not scheduling things- vacations, family outings, your gym time, self-care, etc. it’s not going to happen. Life (or the social media time suck) will ultimately get in the way and it just won’t be a priority. 

Limit Your To-Do List.
Realistically, you can’t do it all. The maximum you can do is six big things a day and maybe not even that. If you’re going to bed at night with guilt that you didn’t get it all done, you’re trying to do too much. Who are you doing those things for? Who are you trying to impress? How is this weighing on your mental or emotional health and energy? Some things are going to need to go in the F*** it bucket. When you’re wondering how you do it all, the answer is, you don’t. You go back to your goals. What is most important to do daily or weekly to make your goals become a reality? 

Ask for Help.
It may be the hardest thing you have to do but it’s also the most vital. Delegate housework to your kids. Developmentally, they are able to start helping do small tasks by age 2. Ask your partner to help with what you don’t have energy for. If they won’t, have the hard conversation around why and/or get help. It takes the whole family working as a team to keep the ship afloat. Hire a babysitter, housekeeper, or assistant if possible. If not, let a few more things go. 

Set Boundaries.
No is a boundary in teh simplest form. If something is too much for you financially, energetically, mentally, physically or emotionally- just say no. This is your permission to stop people pleasing, stop doing the things you think you “should” for the sake of everyone else. When you take care of yourself and set boundaries, you’re respected more and have more energy for who and what matters most. You’ll also be doing things from a place of acceptance versus obligation so your heart will be all in instead of half in and half resentful. You’ll do a better, more complete job and the energy you provide while completing the task will be more positive for everyone, including yourself.

If this is a topic you’re struggling with and you need more help, I have a course that helps with this. It can be done self-study or with 1:1 coaching over 6 weeks. Take that first step of asking for help and email me at coaching@recognizingpotential.com. I’m opening my schedule for 5 clients who need this specific help for the next 6 weeks. Let me know if you’d like to be one of those 5. 

Until then, happy scheduling! 🙂 

Your coach,
Kameran

Social Media: Friend or Foe?

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There’s a reason people who have 10,000+ followers are called “influencers”. They’re literally influencing those who follow them. I don’t feel that a person should have 10k or more followers to be called an influencer though. We are influenced by anyone we are allowing to show up on our feed. The content they produce influences our decisions, our thought processes and our lives. If it didn’t, positively or negatively, we wouldn’t consume their content anymore. We’d simply unfollow.

I don’t take for granted that the combined 2,000 followers I have throughout the different platforms I produce content for, including you, are influenced by that content every single day. In fact, I value it. I have a responsibility to make sure that I’m using these platforms for good, creating helpful content and being responsible for the marriages and families that I’m influencing. I’m also highly aware that not everyone has the same heart I do or takes responsibility for their platforms in the way I do. I’m also hightly aware that because my 12 year old doesn’t have the brain synapses that I do and won’t until his brain stops growing at the age of 25! He doesn’t understand the influence these YouTubers have on him. I won’t let him have social media or his own phone yet for this very reason.

Most of what we learn about relationships can be traced back to our parents, grandparents, or older generations. We watched, we caught more than we were taught about what marriage and relationships should look like. Except when it comes to social media.

We are the first generation to have social media and we are enthralled, obsessed, and addicted. We take our phones to the bathroom with us for crying out loud! How do we model a healthy relationship for future generations?  You know, the upcoming generations that live in our houses and are watching us like we watched previous generations. How do we preach to them to limit screen time when we don’t limit it ourselves?

Recently, Mohammed and I started to ask ourselves the same question as we watched Encanto, Moana and Frozen on a loop for the 8,000th time and again when we were preaching to our tweenager that he needed to get off YouTube! Oof. The hard truth slapping us in the face is that they’re simply following our lead and the only way to make it stop is to set some boundaries.

Over the course of the last few weeks, I’ve seen so many posts in different groups I’m in on facebook talk about affairs, marriage problems and disconnection. Did you know that 85% of affairs start out as emotional affairs? A harmless text that eventually crosses a boundary, a social media post that leads to a direct message that leads to more than just “small talk”. A few years ago, I remember a comment a friend of mine made over couples who share social media accounts and how stupid it was. I wasn’t so sure then but now, I’m definitely sure that it’s not stupid at all. It’s a boundary.

Boundaries aren’t just around who we follow and whether we have our own social media accounts or combined to avoid temptation. They’re setting time limits, removing notifications so we aren’t controlled by a ding, vibration or number in the upper right hand corner of an app. They’re deleting social off your phone, keeping your phone out of the bedroom or turning it on do not disturb mode after a certain time to promote more connection between you and your partner. Boundaries are set to control our own behavior and promote what’s important to us. When we don’t have boundaries, we don’t have control on our time and energy. So we spend that time and energy getting sucked into things that may not be as important as our spouse and kids but we invest our most precious resources in what’s important. So by investing our time and energy into our phone, the message we’re sending to those we love is that social media is our priority. Technology gets our attention and our family gets what’s left over.

That realization was enough for us to say enough is enough. Here are the boundaries we’ve set. Feel free to take what you need and leave the rest.

  • Sleep mode at 9 pm  to avoid blue light before bed
  • No technology at the dinner table or in bed
  • Removed notifications
  • Time limits on certain apps and for the kids
  • Parental monitoring of sites

That’s what we’ve come up with so far. We also started taking a class called Screen Sanity- teaching your kids how to be responsible around technology. If you’d be interested in taking this class, let me know. I am considering getting certified as a faciliator. If you have boundaries around technology that you’ve set, I’d love to hear them as well! Feel free to respond to this email or post them in my Facebook coaching group!

Social media and technology aren’t all bad. Groups, influencers and content can help you grow, can educate and promote positivity. It can be used for good. The idea, like anything else, is to monitor, reflect and inventory it every now and then. Is it a problem? Is the content you’re consuming growing you or making you feel like garbage? Is it helping or hurting your marriage and your family connections? Do you need new or different boundaries?

I look forward to hearing about your boundaries and connecting with you on this topic.

Have a great week!

Your coach,

Kameran

Be the Change

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It’s been a hot minute since I got one of these out to you. To be honest, with moving and the world’s events, I needed a mental break from trying to help everyone else and I needed to help myself. If that’s you too, here’s your permission to take a much needed break to take care of you! It was tremendously helpful! 

During that time, I noticed a lot of patterns within couples I’m coaching, couples that are friends or acquaintences and even with my husband and I. It seems like everyone is at odds with their spouses these days. Interestingly enough, as a professional in this industry, when I look at a relationship quarreling, I see two people playing the blame game while looking in a mirror. 

One person, let’s say the wife, needs connection, touch and for her husband to show affection, desire, and interest in her. So she asks for it in a subtle way. That call for connection is missed by her husband so she feels rejected and protests, picking a fight, criticizing, getting angry and throwing a tantrum. Now in most cases, this happens after many attempts of connection but for time’s sake, roll with me here. 

Now, he withdraws or mirrors back the behavior she exhibits out of defensiveness or a need to keep the peace. All the while, inside, he needs connection, affection, to be wanted and needed as well.

Men don’t typically ask for their needs to be met because men are taught that if they show need or feelings, they’re weak. Women typically protest by literally fighting for the relationship. See how both behaviors are less than desirable but showing the same need? 

So what’s the answer to keep this from happening? 

What I realized when my husband and I were going through this a few weeks ago is that as the woman, I’m more in tune with our connection. I see it going off the rails much more quickly than my husband does. Additionally, I can’t control him or his actions/reactions. I can only control me. So I had to get extremely deep in my reflection of my own behavior. It’s human nature to think we’re doing better than we really are. So when I started looking at myself in the mirror and asking the question “Would you want to be married to you?” The answer wasn’t a resounding yes. In fact, there were many instances where I had been more critical than praising, wasn’t as appreciative as I could’ve been, and wasn’t always assertive in conversations. I had to own my own faults and responsibilities. After all, it does take two people to make the relationship work. I couldn’t blame him for everything and I had to ask to be loved in a more loving way. 

Secondly, I had to connect with my husband on a level that made him feel safe emotionally. That’s our job as spouses, to create a safe space for our partner to be who they are authentically, to be able to talk to us, open up and be vulnerable, without judgement or ridicule. I wasn’t doing a great job of that and neither was he, we were both to blame and that’s why the relationship was becoming disconnected. 

I literally had to be the change I wanted to see in our relationship. I controlled what I could control and continue to do so. I got real with who I want to be as my best self and started living into that. My clients started doing the same as well. 

The result? My husband started noticing the effort I was putting in, how I was changing and started changing his own behavior, becoming a better husband and being more appreciative of me. Both of us became the change we wanted to see. Our marriage, and each of us as individuals are better for it. Our boys are seeing how to come out of hardship in relationships as well. My clients started seeing the same results I was.

It’s important to note, this is a great jumping off point but becoming your best version isn’t a quick fix. This is a long term investment in yourself. It may take months but the quicker you start, the quicker you’ll start seeing some results in your marriage. You also have to do it for yourself, it can’t be change for your spouse or you’ll only build resentment later.

If you’re going through the storm now, drop the scorecard, stop playing the blame game and start looking inward. As always, reach out if you need help. 

Your Coach,

Kameran

Monthly Workshop- June 19 @ 7 PM CST

Do you feel like you and your partner go around and around in the same cycles of conflict? Want to know how to approach conflict as a team? Want to end the cycle? This workshop is your answer!

This workshop can be done as a couple or as an individual and is completely anonymous with the ability to chat directly with me during the workshop. 
Can’t make it that night? Sign up anyway and shoot me an email at coaching@recognizingpotential.com. I’ll send you a replay link on June 20! 
CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP!

What Do You Expect?

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Last week, Mohammed and I were meeting with our coach. No, nothing is “wrong” with our marriage. We believe in having a coach to help us be the best we can possibly be to each other, for our boys, and to keep strengthening our marriage. I mean, what kind of coach would I be to preach to you to hire me but I’m not willing to invest in my own coach?! Seems a little backwards to me. 

Anyway, we were discussing expectations, and she asked if we’d ever written our expectations down for our spouse? 

I had written down what I expected in a husband before I ever knew Moe existed on this planet and certainly compared him to that list once we met but I’m not sure after we started dating that I ever looked at that list again. He hadn’t ever written his down either. 

For the most part, we were both already living into what the other’s expectations for a husband/wife were. However, there were a few key expectations that came up that neither of us had never even heard of but that have caused friction in our marriage in the past. Both of us expected each other to “just know” that’s what we wanted and had maybe verbalized it in frustration from time to time but never actually said “this is what I need/expect”. 

We assumed the other would “just do it”. Neither of us are mind readers so how exactly was that going to work? It wasn’t. Hence, the friction, irritation, shame, blame, guilt, anger…etc, etc. 

That’s how expectations work. Like a ladder, the behavior of your spouse can only climb as far as your communication allows. Our communication was limited so naturally the behavior of the other was as well. The gap that was left? Shame, blame, guilt, resentment, all the negativity. 

Oddly enough, I’m seeing the same predicament in a lot of facebook posts, instagram DMs that are sent to me, and clients I’ve met with in the last week. Maybe you’re experiencing some irritation, resentment and/or anger too. 

Here’s how you can help your marriage right now.

1. Write down your expectations. 
What do you expect your spouse’s role to be? What does that look like? How do you expect them to act, treat you, treat themselves? How much money do you expect them to make a year? What character traits do you expect them to have and how do they show that out loud? 

2. Narrow it down. 
Can you take all these expectations and narrow it down to 3-4 buckets? For example, “I expect my spouse to provide and protect, prioritize me and our marriage, and strive for the best version of themselves”. 

3. Share
One of the 6 types of conversations couples must have is vulnerable sharing. Your expectations definitely fall under that category. 

Find a time where you and your spouse are in a good headspace and share your expectations of each other. Listen actively. Ask open ended questions to clarify. Make sure you have the mindset that you’re having this conversation to be better as a team. Ask the question “How can I live more fully into your expectations?” This also builds emotional connection when done in an assertive, safe space with a low and slow tone.

Compromise if necessary and don’t be afraid to say “I feel like that expectation is too high for me to live into” if necessary.

4. Challenge
Challenge yourself to live into the expectations that are set. 

5. Check in Weekly
“How am I doing in meeting your expectations?” or “What’s it like to be with me right now?” These check ins allow for any concerns to be voiced so they don’t fester over time. They also allow for any praise to be given and confidence to be boosted where it might otherwise go unspoken. 

Check out this month’s workshop below and I’ll chat with you next week! 

Your Coach,

Kameran

May Workshop- May 10th @ 7 PM CST

Are you constantly frustrated, resentful, angry or irritated with the people you love? 
Do you frequently say YES when you’d rather say NO?
Do you feel like your needs consistently go unmet while everyone else in your house thrives and lives their best life? 
Do you often feel taken advantage of and/or unappreciated?

If you answered YES to any of these questions- you might need help with boundaries. This month’s workshop is going to teach you all about boundaries in marriage! How to set them, what to say, how to recognize when a boundary isn’t in place but needs to be, how to get your spouse (and other’s) to respect your boundaries even when they don’t agree. This workshop can be done as a couple or as an individual and is completely anonymous with the ability to chat directly with me during the workshop. 
Can’t make it that night? Sign up anyway and shoot me an email at coaching@recognizingpotential.com. I’ll send you a replay link on May 11! 
CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP!

Want to be 86% happier in your marriage?

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Ever see a couple that’s obviously in love and been together a while and wonder “what’s the secret to being so happy and in love”? 

The answer may be in how well they answer each other’s call to connection. Throughout each day, we bid for our partner’s connection in one way or another. It can be subtle or obvious, spoken or not but either way, the call is there. 

Whether or not that call is answered makes all the difference in whether we feel fulfilled or depleted at the end of the day. 

Calls for connection can look like: 
reaching for your partner’s hand to hold
asking for help in the kitchen after dinner
sighing because of a heavy heart, stress or exhaustion
saying something like “hey, check this out” 
asking your partner a question
making a nonchalant statement of all you have to do/get done or something you wish you could do instead
In instances like these, our partner has three choices. 1) To turn towards us by answering the call 2) To turn away from us by missing the call or 3) To turn against us by rejecting the call by being rude, picking a fight or making a remark that is belligerent or argumentative. 

Here’s where the research gets interesting! Happy couples answer the call and turn towards each other TWENTY times more than those who are stressed out or unhappy, provided this is in a neutral, non-confrontational circumstance. Additionally, in the study done by Dr. John Gottman in his marriage lab at Washington University, couples who had gotten married and stayed married 6 years after answered their partner’s call 86% of the time while in the lab. Couples who were divorced shortly after getting married only answered the call 33% of the time. 

What’s this tell us? Simply put that every time you bid for your partner’s connection and they turn towards you, the message is sent that you are: 
wanted
loved
interesting to your partner
heard
understood
a team
accepted for who you are (even if your behavior isn’t always desired)
WOW! Isn’t the the whole point of marriage in the first place? You marry someone to love, cherish, desire, want, help, find interesting, hear, understand and be a team with? 

Yet somehow, missing or rejecting those calls happens more and more frequently if we aren’t careful, intentional and mindful of our partner over the years. This causes the rejected partner to criticize more, build more anger and resentment toward their partner and feel ignored. Their emotional bank account is depleted so when small things happen, usually a fight ensues. 

When you are actively tuned into the small things with your partner, big deposits are made into your emotional bank accounts. Drops are put into that bucket of trust. So when something happens, a larger life event that would normally overdraft that bank account or dump that bucket out, it’s not as big of a loss. It doesn’t break your marriage but rather allows your partner to show more empathy, compassion, and understanding.

These small habits create a feeling that you’re in control and actively making a difference in your marriage. 

Practice answering the call by actively listening to your partner, asking open ended questions, responding with reflection and interest. 

Also, check out my new monthly subscription! 40 open ended questions/conversation starters to help you and your partner build better communication, deepen the connection in your marriage, and have conversations that are more than just “how was your day, the kids are fine, here’s what’s for dinner”. There are also two previously recorded coaching videos included on the 1st and 15th as part of the subscription! If you’re ready to strengthen your marriage, get to know your spouse again and feel like a united team again, Connected is your answer!
 
Your Coach,

Kameran

P.S- Did you catch this week’s episode of the podcast? I interviewed LCMFT Holly Smith! She is such a wealth of information! We talked all about attachment styles and how they play out in childhood and shape our relationships! We talk about how to use those attachment styles to become healthier individuals in marriage and how to understand our partners more. It’s truly a fantastic episode! Search for Recognizing Potential Podcast anywhere you get your favorite podcasts.

Spice Up Your Life (in the bedroom)!

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This isn’t my typical topic of addressing but it’s been frequently suggested and in a poll I did on my IG stories recently, one that had the most votes. Ask and you shall receive! 

What’s the first question you hear when you go to a restaurant? 

Can I get you any appetizers with your drinks?

Many times, that’s how we think of foreplay also- as the appetizer to the main course. That may be the exact reason couples are having less and less sex. 

Did you know that only about 30% of women orgasm from penetration alone? Did you also know that there are over 8,000 nerve endings in a woman’s clitoris and that it’s a misconception that the clit is only a small bean shape? It’s actually more like a wishbone starting with that bean, branching and wrapping down the sides of the labia.

Fun fact, there’s only 4,000 nerve endings in the head of a penis. So gents, think about how sensitive your head is. With only penetration, you’re basically making your girl eat french fries for dinner and leaving an entire porterhouse on the table. She’s still gonna be a little (or a lot) hungry later!!

Think of foreplay not as an appetizer but more like breakfast.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day just like foreplay is the most important part of the act. It builds the connection that a woman needs, gets both of you in a mood and makes the act itself Oscar worthy. 

Here are a few ideas to help you get started. 

1. Compliments
People like to hear nice things about themselves and a healthy relationship has a 5:1 positive to negative ratio. Start the morning of and send a flirty text to your spouse- “I love the way your butt looks in those jeans.” “Your back is so sexy.” “You smell so good.”  Keep it going a few times throughout the day- “Can’t wait for you to get home. I’ve been thinking about you all day.” 

2. Communicate
You know what they say about assumptions and our partners aren’t mind readers. So, come right out and ask your partner what turns them on. Do they have any fantasies, things they’d like to try, new positions in mind? 

3. Make out.
Remember when you were dating and making out was fun? Brush your teeth, swish some mouth wash and make it fun again! 

4. Get out of your head. 
The laundry can wait and so can the dishes. That TV show isn’t as important as your marriage. Lock the door, the kids will be fine. Focus on your partner, on your connection and on having FUN! (Seeing a theme here?)You need it, deserve it, and will certainly be grateful for it later. 

5. Explore
When you’ve been together for a while, your sex life can get a little monotonous. That’s completely normal and common. If you’re in a rut, it might be because you’re doing the things that used to work but are now predictable and over done. Change things up a bit. Use different sensations and temperatures- a feather, a silk tie or scarf as a blindfold, ice cubes, wax, something you haven’t tried before. Try massaging areas you haven’t before. Genitals aren’t the only erotic or sensitive areas. Thighs, chest, breasts, neck, back and wrists can all be erogenous zones. Explore your partner and get to know them again for who they are now and what they like. 

6. Get good at talking dirty.
I will pre-empt this one by saying that some people will have an adverse reaction to dirty talk so make sure you communicate beforehand and ask your partner if they like it. If you know they do, tell them what you’re going to do to them and be specific. Use those adjectives!! Ask what they want and show interest when they respond.

7. Use encouragement and visuals.
Nobody wants to be criticized in the middle of getting intimate so if you’re not really fond of something, use encouraging words and suggestions. “Try this…”, “I like it when you…”, “It feels good when…” Show your partner what you like. Move their hands or body to show them what you’d rather have.

8. Kiss. A lot. 
Kissing passionately, deeply and frequently serves several purposes! Not only does it give women the most erotic pleasure according to studies, it also gets women back into the game when they’ve lost interest or gotten into their head a little too much! Passionately kissing shows desire for your partner and affirms that you still want them. It provides connection- something many marriages are lacking these days. Note- deeply and passionately is not to be confused with sloppy or choking your partner with your tongue. 

9. Strong hands
Massage is an art that, when performed well, can lead to incredible connection and desire! If you’re someone who rubs for a minute and a half and your hands (or your brain) get tired, work on hand strengthening exercises. Watching youtube videos on becoming a better masseuse can also impress your partner, increase the connection and improve the experience! 

10. Practice Selflessness 
It is the job of both parties to initiate. 
If you lose interest in the massage or the act, get your head back in the game! It’s not only about you. When you both take the stance of “how can I give my partner the most pleasure?” the experience is enjoyable for both parties. The second mindset that needs to be mastered is for you gents and it goes like this “I don’t come until she does.” Remember that 30% rule from the beginning and you’ll be golden. 

Keep in mind, these tips are meant for marriages that are safe and secure emotionally, physically and sexually. If you are not in that kind of relationship, please seek help. Intimacy is at it’s best when both parties feel safe physically, safe to express themselves, can connect on an emotional level and have mutual trust. 

Foreplay is just that- PLAY. It gets you in the mood, lets you open up and enjoy the one you love in a way that you don’t on a typical day. It creates a bond and shows that you still choose your partner today just as you did on the day you got married!

Until next week, love each other well.

Your Coach,

Kameran

P.S.- If you are on the fence about working with me from now until the summer, this is your chance! Today is my birthday and I like to GIVE gifts just as much as I like receiving them! So, my gift to you is 30% off my most popular group programs for TODAY ONLY!! 

If you are looking for emotional intelligence – EQ & YOU is for you! Starting the week of 3/14.

If you’re looking to take your life back, get on track with goals, build a plan, stop feeling like you’re barely keeping your head above water, stop being resentful and irritated with all the people in your household- Back to Basics is your jam!  Starting 3/21. 

At your wits end with your marriage? Want it to be better but you aren’t sure where to start and your partner isn’t on board with getting help with you? Better Me, Better Us is your answer! Speaking from experience- a better marriage starts with a better you! Starting the week of 4/4. 

Is trust an issue?

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“Trust is built in droplet and lost in buckets.” – Kevin A. Plank

For the past 5 months, I’ve been working on an aviation summit for pilot wives. We had around 350 people who attended the summit and I’m so grateful. I’m grateful that it was a huge success and so many got resources and information to help build better, happier lives. I’m equally as grateful that it’s over. It was a LOT of work! 

After it was over, I had several emails from summit viewers on relationship questions and 5 or so were centered around trust. “If my husband has cheated, can I ever trust him again?” “My partner hasn’t done anything big for me to not trust him but a lot of little things over time to make me question my trust in him. Are we doomed?” “My partner relives patterns that feel like betrayal and hurt me so much. Should I leave or is there a chance we can work it out?” 

Trust is one of the foundational building blocks of a marriage. When it’s broken, it’s usually broken in a big way. The betrayed partner feels hurt while questioning the decisions they’re making by staying. The emotional and mental overload is immense! The betrayer may feel remorse, fear of losing the relationship, guilt, and maybe even a need to defend their actions. 

The short answer to these questions is that yes, trust can be restored. No, you’re not doomed. 

However, the long answer starts with the misconception that trust is easily restored or that it’s a quick process. It’s not, on either account.

Forgiveness doesn’t mean forgetting. 

A few days ago my son was playing the Xbox and I began to hear him talking to someone through his headset. It was 9AM and while my son is homeschooled, he doesn’t know a lot of other kids his age that are so I knew he wasn’t talking to someone he knew. That’s rule number 1 in our house. Then when I started looking into the game he was playing, it was a game he isn’t even allowed to be on. Strike two.

I forgave him for making an unsafe decision and breaking the house expectations. However, he still lost his privileges on the Xbox for a hot minute.

Forgiveness doesn’t exempt him from taking responsibility for his actions. He now has to show me that he’s learned the lesson and that I can trust him in that situation again. 

It’s no different for your spouse. You can forgive them but they’re still responsible for the actions that have hurt you, for apologizing using your apology language (not theirs), and for showing you repeatedly over time that they have learned something from that experience and can be trusted again. 

The next misconception is that one time of proof that they’ve done great means you trust them fully again. Not even close. Droplets and buckets, remember? That one time is fantastic and definitely helps but it doesn’t mean your partner is automatically going to praise you, celebrate you and tell you you’re off the hook because you screwed up last time. That’s a very unrealistic expectation.

It may mean that time, repeated “good behavior” and apologizing every time there is a trigger for the offending incident coming up is needed to restore the trust. Does it mean that the offended partner can throw you under the bus, chastise you, or use hurtful words/actions every time they’re triggered? Absolutely not. Healthy communication of emotions, triggers and maybe even avoiding those triggers will be needed to move forward. That’s going to look different for every relationship. 

You have to do what works for you and your relationship. 

That may mean an agreement that an app like Life360 or sharing your location is put in place. Calling when you get somewhere, facetiming, having your partner with you, being home by a certain time, getting therapy, coaching or counseling is needed or coming up with a game plan to break patterns is put into play. Accepting and respecting the boundaries your partner puts into place to keep them emotionally safe has to happen.

The betrayer has to be open and honest- with themselves and with their partner. They have to be willing to let go of the pride and accept the consequences of overstepping the boundaries put into place and they have to want the good of the relationship more than they want their pride and ego to be stroked. 

If you’re needing help with this, please reach out. I do have 4 open spaces for pop up sessions this coming week. 

Until next week, love each other well.

Your Coach,

Kameran

Are you living into the best version of you?

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One to two times a year my husband goes to training as a pilot. He goes for his annual training to keep him current so he can be on top of his game when he’s flying 75 passengers to and from making memories. This year he started the year at training to upgrade to captain. 
He’s gone for about a month both times and let’s face it, if anything at all is going to happen, it will be during those times. It’s pilot wife law. Well long story short, during this trip alone- my son has been pulled from middle school after a ridiculous amount of issues and we’ve started homeschooling-a situation in an of itself that took about 8 years off my life from stress. My dad had his second heart attack in 5 years. I have a full coaching roster, working from home, have a teething toddler and my love languages (quality time and physical touch) have obviously not been met. Resentful? A little. 

I met with my coach because yes, coaches need coaches so we can make sure we are applying everything we preach. After hearing all of this, she asked me “how are you living into the best version of you?” Umm… I’m trying not to drown? Doesn’t sound very “best version” and thriving.

Buuuuuut….She was right. *sigh* Funny how that happens and it was just the kick in the pants I needed.

I can’t control the fact that my husband is living his dreams and doing what he believes is his best by providing for his family. I can’t control that his idea of what a man needs to do and what I need as a woman and a wife are fundamentally different. I can control whether or not I’m a jerk to him and whether I support him in doing so. I can control how I communicate these needs and we work through them while he’s there and has a break and after he gets home. 

I’ve controlled all I can with the school, communicated the best I can. I can’t control the fact that it hasn’t helped. However, I have a teaching degree so  I can control my son’s learning and the outcomes of what he gets at home.

I can’t control the outcome of my Dad’s health and when he’s called home. Scary as it is, this one’s all on God. 

I can’t control my feelings of inadequacy, overwhelm, loneliness, resentment, or love languages not being met. I can control how much time I spend working on my mindset, going to the gym so I feel better about myself, what I eat, how I spend my time and how I react to these feelings. I can control how I communicate my needs and initiate virtual date nights. 

I can control how I show up for my husband, even if he isn’t able to show up for me in the ways I’d like him to right now. I can control my integrity, my empathy and my own effort because if the situations were reversed, this is how I’d want him to treat me. That dadgum golden rule sure does slap you in the face all the way through your life.

Throughout this whole week, I had to get real with myself and sometimes that means answering the hard questions like Who is the best version of myself? What does she look like? How does she show up to life, to all the roles she plays and for herself? 

It takes two whole people to create a whole union. If I’m relying on my husband to be his best before I am my best, that’s codependent and not healthy or whole. It’s also counter-blaming your partner and showing defensiveness, one of the top four causes of divorce. 

Bottom line, the best version of your marriage starts as the best version of you. Start there and control what you can control. It’s the only thing that will keep your sanity in check in a world of chaos.

If you have absolutely no idea what the best version of you looks like, get into the Back to Basics program! A short 6 week course that teaches you to recognize the best version of you, create goals you’ll actually keep, create habits to fulfill those goals and live into the best version of you, set boundaries to preserve your energy, and create a life you are madly in love with!  (If you need a payment plan, please email me at coaching@recognizingpotential.com)

Your Coach,

Kameran

Are you preparing for an exceptional marriage? 

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Sunday night I was talking with my husband who’s been away at training for the last few weeks to become a Captain and he was telling me they had a full day of scenario training. The trainer gives scenario after scenario and the pilots have to go through what they would do to not crash the plane. A full day of this. The conversation got me thinking.  

Marriage is no different. Scenario after scenario- some you see coming, some you don’t. Is this why 50% of first time marriages and 64% of second time marriages crash and burn? I think yes! 

Are you prepared for what you don’t see coming? 
 
How will you handle job loss? Infertility? A surprise baby? A child getting hurt or having an allergic reaction when your spouse is away on business? Plans not working out the way you’d dreamed up? Unmet expectations? Career changes? A parent getting sick or dying? God forbid, your spouse or child dying? 

Of course you don’t want to think about any of this. It’s definitely not fun but if you aren’t prepared, the anxiety, stress and overwhelm will eat you for lunch.  

Alan Lakein said “if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” In this instance, he’s absolutely right. 

What if you didn’t get premarital coaching? Are you doomed? Absolutely not. 

Start preparing now, where you are.

Have the hard conversations. “Hey, do we have a will? Life insurance? We should probably get that.” Then, and this is the most important step- make the appointment to do so! 

What do the words success, cheating, being a good wife/husband/mom/dad, exceptional marriage, marriage in general, parental support, emotional support, and effort mean to you? Assuming you have the same definition of important words leads to disappointment, hurt, resentment and anger when it feels like your partner betrayed you but they feel like they did nothing wrong.

How do you feel loved, supported, admired, respected, wanted? Again, assuming you both feel the same way leads to nothing but negativity.

What will we do in the case of…?

Exceptional marriages are not found or by luck. They are built with intention, maturity, compromise and communication.

Stress is caused by lack of preparation. This applies to all stress in life, not just in your marriage. 

Prepare for the disasters so that if and when they happen, they seem like small bumps in the road instead of a catastrophe. 

As always, if you need help with this, check out the courses page on this website! I’ve got some great options and even a couple new ones! 😉

Your Coach,

Kameran

I don’t feel wanted.

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I don’t know about you but I have felt this way many times in my marriage. I hear it a lot in sessions while coaching couples and often, I don’t think it’s completely understood. We know we don’t feel wanted, but why? What’s happening under the surface? Is there something going on with our partner as well? Let’s dive in. 
 

It’s a two part scenario.

 

Partner 1: 

” I don’t feel wanted.”Internally, this partner feels shame, embarrassment, like something is wrong with them. They don’t feel important. 
Externally, gender issues come into play so if it’s the woman that’s feeling this way, she starts thinking “He’s a man! He’s supposed to want sex all the time, isn’t he?” She starts thinking she isn’t good enough in bed, isn’t pretty enough, sexy enough, a good enough wife. If it’s a man that isn’t wanted, it becomes “I’m not a good enough husband. I’m supposed to be able to fix this. Why doesn’t she just tell me the problem? Am I not performing well enough in bed?” Both partners of either gender might even start thinking that there is someone else, assuming, and even going so far as to accuse their spouse of an affair. 

Partner 2: 

Internally, “my partner just told me they don’t feel wanted. Do they not understand that I’ve been under so much stress lately? I’m overworked! I work all day and come home expecting to work some more!” It’s not that they don’t want you. It’s that they are overwhelmed and have a low libido because of external or possibly internal factors (hormones, diet, sleep factors, etc) 

What can we do about it? 
 

Have a conversation and take a deep look at your part in this scenario. If this is about how your sex life is going (or isn’t), look at your own performance. Many women enter into sex thinking that they have to say yes because societally we’ve been conditioned to believe that it’s our “womanly/wifely duty” but if we are agreeing just to agree without really being into it, watching the clock, the ceiling, thinking about how many loads of laundry we have, the kids will be home from school any minute, etc. that isn’t building connection.

As the man, agreeing or initiating without being emotionally connected, you’re not doing your wife any favors. At the same time, if you’re too focused on your performance and how it has to be perfect because that’s what you’ve been societally conditioned for, you’re not doing yourself any favors. That’s a lot of pressure to put on yourself! 

Connection has to be the core focus of sex for it to feel fulfilling. If a woman doesn’t feel wanted and desired during, afterwards she will feel “slutty”, used, shameful. If a man doesn’t feel like she’s engaged, it feels shameful, like he’s not performing well enough, self-conscious. The big question here is: How are you showing up to the act?

Second question, how do you feel about yourself?  If you’re feeling down, have low self-esteem, like that 5 extra pounds you gained at Christmas is definitely showing and you’ve started wearing leggings and your hair hasn’t been washed in more than 5 days or you’ve sat around in your holey underwear, haven’t showered or cut your toenails in 3 weeks well…are you attracted to yourself? Confidence is sexy! What do you need to do to create a reality where you feel sexy again? 

Back to that conversation- this is kind of like a love languages thing. How does your partner feel wanted? It probably looks different than your way of feeling wanted. Speak their language. 

Additionally, why don’t you want your partner right now? Are you stressed? Do you feel like your emotional connection is missing? Is there a lot of conflict in your relationship right now? How’s your sex drive as a whole right now? For the partner who isn’t feeling wanted- LISTEN more than you talk right now. See this from your partner’s point of view. 

Sidenote here, it’s super common in sessions for me to hear “I’m always the one who initiates!” Sometimes the person initiating more frequently also feels like they’re getting shot down so they stop initiating. This leads to the other partner not feeling wanted. Drop the initiation scorecard! At the same time, if you don’t initiate, START! It’s not one person’s responsibility to initiate all the time. A key mantra to adopt is “I won’t shame you for saying no if you don’t shame me for asking.”  Tom and Lisa Bilyeu shared that a few years ago and it’s been a game changer in my own marriage! 

Bottom line: YOU MISS EACH OTHER! 

How can you come together to feel more connected? 

Need help? This is where I thrive as a coach!! Reach out! 
 
Your Coach,

Kameran


This week on the podcast- I interview Dr. Joli Hamilton- mother of 7, relationship coach and expert on jealousy! We talk about jealousy, communication styles, relationship entanglements (with people and feelings) and so much more! You are sure to get tools, conversation starters and so much more in this episode! Find the podcast anywhere you listen to your favorite podcasts. It’s called Recognizing Potential Podcast. You can also click the orange wifi lookin button below to listen! 

Complaining is GOOD for your marriage!

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Do you find yourself complaining to your spouse a lot? Fantastic! It’s actually good for your marriage! Yes, you read that correctly. 

Studies done by the University of Washington show that couples who complain in a moderate amount have healthier marriages than those who don’t. Complaining helps keep resentment from building and helps each individual improve in their abilities as a husband/wife because they’re being brought to the individual’s attention. 

The catch? It must be complaining and not criticizing. What’s the difference? I’m glad you asked! 

Complaining addresses the behavior of a person. Criticizing attacks the person as a whole. 

Complaints sound like “I felt really disrespected by the tone you used this morning when we were working on the budget.” 

Criticism sounds like “You are so disrespectful when we discuss the bills!” 

Notice that the complaint started with I while the criticism started with you. As you read on, notice that the complaint clearly addressed the behavior as it said “you used” while the criticism said “you are”.  While the words don’t seem that different, the message behind the words is received completely different. Additionally, complaining communicates an emotion. Your partner can’t get mad when you’re communicating an emotion because it’s your feeling, your experience.

Think of communication like a gate. When you start your complaint with an I message, “I feel/want/would appreciate/like/don’t care for…” your partner is much more apt to listen and hear you out. The communication gate stays open. When the message starts with “you are/do/always/never/have/…” the receiver of the message immediately feels threatened and attacked. The gate is slammed shut, the wall goes up and the listener is now listening only to respond to the threat versus truly hearing what the speaker is saying. 

In addition to complaining versus criticizing, using “we” instead of you, I or me can also lead to more solutions and less arguments. 

Example: “We” forgot to take out the trash before we left for vacation. We didn’t shut the garage door last night before bed. We need to remember to pay the phone bill. We have to send a gift to my mom. 

Understandably, it doesn’t take two people to mail a letter or take out the trash. But if one person who usually takes that role on forgets or doesn’t have time, is it possible for the other to step in and do it out of an act of generosity? Absolutely! 

Using we the most in a conversation says “Hey partner, I’m not blaming you. I’m in this as a team so I want to come to a solution as a team.” Doing things with an attitude of generosity rather than irritation and resentment says the same thing.  

The catch there is that one person can’t always be picking up the slack. Obviously that’s not going to work well in the team atmosphere and definitely will lead to breakdown and exhaustion in the partner doing the majority of the work which will cause resentment and anger. 

What are you communicating to your partner? Are you coming at things as a team or as if they’re your enemy? Are you complaining or criticizing? Where could you improve?

Communicate well and as always, if this is an area you need help with, reach out for a pop-up session or for more information on 1:1 coaching! 

Your Coach,

Kameran

In 2022, your marriage needs THIS!

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2021 has come to an end. Some were glad to see it go and others look back with fond memories. For us, it was both. For many reasons, it was hard and seemed a little like another dumpster fire. On the other hand, we saw baby Zayn go from an infant to sitting, crawling, pulling up, saying his first words, walking and dancing! We went on great adventures to Egypt, Sea World, and traveled to see family. It was full of joy and memories!

However, one thing I’m seeing with clients, friends, followers and being a pilot wife, even with my own marriage at times is that the one thing lacking in many marriages is connection. 

Humans start looking for connection as soon as we are born! It starts with feeling that skin to skin contact with our parents straight out of the womb. We feel comfort, love and safety there, physically and emotionally. That drive to find emotional safety with other human beings, that deep need for physical comfort extends throughout our entire lives. The search for emotional safety is part of our survival. This may be a newsflash for you and it may not. Some are aware and others not so much. Some even go so far as to deny this drive even exists because they’ve lost contact with it. Oh but deeply suppressed, it’s still there. 

Emotional safety > emotional connection > emotional intimacy. It’s a chain reaction. When emotional intimacy is lacking in marriage, it creates a deep, black hole of emptiness and/or emotional discomfort. Both of these cause people to behave in ways that hurt themselves and others. Remember how I’m always saying that behavior is communication of an unmet need? Still applies here. The unmet need is emotional connection or emotional intimacy. The behavior is that hurt people hurt people.

So in 2022, I challenge you to develop a deeper emotional intimacy with your partner. How? 

Cultivate a sense of “good enough”. Good enough is not perfect- we and nothing is ever going to be perfect. This sense of good enough understands that no one in your home is ever going to be emotionally available, present and supportive 100% of the time. However, it is also striving for at least 50% of the time. It’s giving your partner and your children a felt experience of being seen, heard, understood, wanted and loved. Especially, when they are feeling emotional distress (anger, anxiety, sadness, fear, loss, disappointment, etc). This means that when your partner or your children are acting out in ways that are less than loveable, you understand that in that moment is when they need love the most! 

It means that instead of saying “you’re ok/fine” or “stop crying” to your kids, you say things like “how can I help you right now?” or “is your body hurt or your feelings?” proceeded with “do you need (provide a solution), a hug, or both?” It’s not getting angry at them because they’re communicating an unmet need and don’t have the emotional regulation or vocabulary to communicate with words in a respectful, calm manner. Many adults don’t even do this so having that expectation for your children is unrealistic.

It means that you develop connection with your spouse by getting to know them again! When Moe and I were dating, we spent HOURS on the phone talking and asking questions. The other day I mentioned not feeling connected and referenced these conversations to which he replied “Yeah but babe, we’re done with that. We did it when we were dating so we don’t have to have those conversations again.” OY VEY!  No, no, no my friend. As a couple, you are constantly having those conversations because you’re constantly evolving. Who you are now is not who you were 5 years ago. Do you know your partner now? Do you know yourself now? Asking open-ended questions, digging deeper into things, promoting that emotional connection builds that emotional intimacy which leads to a MUCH deeper physical intimacy! So if your emotional relationship is lacking, so is your life in the bedroom mostly likely. If your emotional intimacy is strong, safe and deep, so is the sex!  

Emotional support skills are learned skills including emotional validation, reflection, mindfulness, active listening, communication, self-regulation and co-regulation, and the biggest one of all- empathy. 

If you’re interested in deepening this for yourself, check out the courses page for a brand new course option that hasn’t even been advertised to the public yet! 

Have a HAPPY NEW YEAR! Build that emotional connection and keep striving to be the best version of yourself in 2022! I have so much hope and excitement for you and all you’re going to accomplish this year! 

Your Coach,

Kameran

How Busy is “too busy”?

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Have you noticed how if you ask someone how they are doing and instead of the canned answer of “fine”, it’s being replaced with a big sigh followed by “BUSY!”? Then the next ten minutes of conversation consist of all the things you’re busy with, all the things they’re busy with and nobody actually says how they are doing with or feeling about it all?

We’ve become a society that wears busy like a badge of honor. Somewhere along the line we have decided that being busy means we’re needed, wanted, successful, prosperous, important. The fuller our calendar, the fuller our hearts. Our brains must have 5,934 tabs open and running at full speed or we are simply not working to max capacity as a human being! 

On the other hand, taking time to rest, relax, rejuvenate, leaving time in our day to just be, to have a quiet mind means we are lazy, unsuccessful, unwanted, not needed, broke as a joke and absolutely not important. We must be absolutely miserable without every minute in our time blocked calendar full with something. The mere thought of sitting still just to soak up the sun or watch a movie with your family? Well, that’s just wasteful.

Seems pretty insane, right? To be so overloaded that we don’t have time to make a phone call or to actually hit send on a text? 

It is. Society has created the norms for what busy means and what it doesn’t. Biblically speaking though, rest is needed and should be celebrated. In Genesis- God creates the world by resting first because the Jewish calendar actually starts in the evening of each day. After rest is honored and applied, He creates a piece of the world, sits back, celebrates it by taking pride in his work and saying “that’s good” and then repeating the cycle. On the seventh day- and this is big! He what? He RESTS. God doesn’t need to rest, He’s GOD! He doesn’t do that for his benefit- He does it as an example of what WE as humans are supposed to be doing!

How often do we celebrate our work and tell ourselves “yeah! Good job self. That’s pretty great work right there.” Rest for a whole day? Uh, no thanks. I’m not completely burnt out and feel like I’m dying when I try to get out of bed yet. I can still go a few more weeks on full blast and a half-pot of coffee a day! 

Anybody else see how utterly ridiculous we as a human race sound right now in reading this? 

The past few months, you may have realized that the podcast changed to Monday releases, the newsletter is sometimes weekly but most of the time bi-weekly, and my IG stories? Well, they aren’t an all day, every day thing. Does it mean I’m burnt out on what I do? NO! I’m actually more passionate now than ever before! 

Somewhere along the way, I started realizing everything I told you and I started making intentional changes. I re-started the gym membership I didn’t have time for because it makes me happy when I go and to teach my boys what it means to live healthy. I stopped tutoring all but two of the kids I was working with because fitting all of them into my schedule was irritating and took way more energy than I wanted to give for way less money than my time is worth. I started sitting in the floor with my 1 year old and actually playing instead of watching him over the screen of my laptop. Side note- tapping into your inner child brings more joy and stress relief than most adults will ever know. Is it weird at first? Yes but only because we’re conditioned to believe that at the age of 13 we should put away childish things and never think of them again. A theory that is total crap by the way. 

Point being, I accepted that I have the time. I was simply prioritizing being busy with things that really don’t mean jack in the grand scheme of things over the things that truly matter at the end of the day. My marriage, time with my boys that is too fleeting anyway, health, and truly living out my purpose as a relationship coach- a passion that is reignited every time I get on a call. 

To me, that’s success. It’s everything I dreamed of and prayed for. It’s enough for me and my family, important to me, gives me time to be still, drink my coffee while it’s still hot and take a nap if I want  and at the end of the day, I’m helping couples save their marriages! That’s my happy, my fulfillment, my life is complete. All because I simply chose to say “hell no” to what wasn’t a “hell yes”, leave space in my calendar, value my time and prioritize what was really important to me.

Your happy and complete may look wildly different than mine, and that’s ok. But as we close out 2021, I’d encourage you to look at your calendar and do the same reflections I did. I’m telling you- it will completely change your life! 

Your Coach,
Kameran

P.S- if you want this but aren’t sure where to start- email me at coaching@recognizingpotential.com. I’ve got just the thing!

Top 10 Tips to Survive Holiday Family Time

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Or is it?

The holidays stir up different emotions for everyone. For those who had wonderful childhood memories of the holidays, have a supporting family and leave each gathering feeling fulfilled, loved and excited for the next meeting, the holidays are incredible! Some people have the complete opposite of those giddy vibes that family provides though. Which person are you? Do you know which category your spouse falls into? Is it the same as yours? Here are a few tips to help you both get through the holidays. 

1. Talk about it.
If you are in a relationship, talk to your spouse about what the holidays bring for you- stress, anxiety, bad memories, excitement, happiness, fulfillment? What comes up for you? Certain feelings for one side of the family and others for the other side? What comes up for them for their family? What comes up for them with your family? 

If you’re not in a relationship, be aware of the answers to these questions for yourself. Journal on them if needed.

2. Set expectations with everyone.
What time are you meeting? Where? Who’s bringing what dish? Who’s staying where? When are you leaving? 

Additionally, how do you expect the time to go? Do you want to take advantage of the time to relax or do you want to fill the time with certain activities? 

3. Identify patterns. Address if needed.
Are you always the one who cooks and cleans while others sit, eat and expect to be served on a silver platter? Frustrating for sure, but before you get mad and build that silent resentment- try asking for their help. Ask yourself if where your anger or irritation comes from when the pattern arises. Is it because you’ve never communicated your expectations?

4. Cultural Differences
Cultures are different across the world but they can also be different from family to family. Some families eat certain foods, some have traditional events, some have a particular demeanor. Get to know your people. Just because they don’t do everything your family does or they want certain things included doesn’t make them wrong. It’s part of their culture. If you aren’t aware of them, there’s a really good chance you’re pre-judging without all the facts. 

As a personal example, my husband is Middle Eastern. His family is boisterous, indulgent, doting, and always laughing. Everyone helps clean up. My family is more serious. Expectations are higher but communication isn’t. My brothers have conversations mostly made up of movie lines. The idioms are fast and frequent. My youngest brother has a hard time with the fact that my husband takes a nap every day after lunch. 

In my husband’s culture, this is common but more than that, having to constantly focus on conversations, be apart of them and think about the meaning behind the conversations going on around him- my husband is completely exhausted after only a few hours. His mind runs on full force just trying to fit into the conversations. Not something my brother has ever thought about or asked about but has definitely judged Moe for. Are you judging people without understanding their perspective or needs? 

5. Take a Step Back.
Certain family members drain every ounce of your energy? This is sadly more common than most people care to admit. Ask yourself what bothers you about them? Remember that insecurities are LOUD, confidence is quiet. If they’re loud and obnoxious, maybe they need reassurance that they’re wanted, seen, heard or loved. If they’re overbearing or controlling, maybe they need boundaries. Also remember that unhealthy people respond to boundaries in unhealthy ways. However, if they are responding in an unhealthy way, they’re only solidifying why the boundary needed set in the first place. Keep setting them. Eventually, their response won’t trigger you as much. Take a step back and view the person and the situation from a different perspective- theirs, an outsider’s or as that person. What’s needed? 

6. REST
For those of us who leave family and are not fulfilled but more drained after the holidays, we need a few days to rest. A vacation from the vacation if you will. If your spouse is this person, have compassion and give them the rest they need. If you are this person, take the time you need. Get your nails done, take a drive, get a massage, whatever you need to refill your own cup, do it.

7. Do What You Gotta Do.
In some cases, family is who you choose, not what you were born into. If you need to make the choice to put your mental health above a weekend with people who make you miserable, do what you have to do. You should never feel unsafe, torn down or broken by people who claim to love you for the sake of tradition. 

8. Make Your Own Traditions
Turkey too much work and it never gets eaten? Grab a few rotisserie chickens from Costco. Make enchiladas. Have chili and cinnamon rolls instead…and YES! That is an incredibly delicious thing! (IYKYK) Traditions aren’t set in stone. Do what makes things more enjoyable, gives you more time and even better memories! Screw tradition if it takes away from joy, memories or happiness. 

9. Do Not Count Calories. 
You’re talking about 1-2 days, not months. What you eat over the 1-2 days isn’t going to make or break your diet, create bad habits or turn you into a blob. Enjoy your time. Enjoy your meals. Stop obsessing. Stress, shame and guilt will do way more damage to your body and mind than a couple pieces of pumpkin pie ever will. 

10. Take all the pictures. 
Get a cheap tripod off of Amazon, set it up and take pictures. Take pictures of your littles on their Pops & Gigi’s laps. Take the candid shots, the pictures that are real and in the moment. Someday you’ll be glad you did.

Safe travels and enjoy your week! 

Kameran

See No Evil, Feel No Evil?

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Last week, I talked about filtering your mouth. You can find that post here if you haven’t read it yet. 

However, there are three filters we have to engage in order to have a great marriage.  

The second filter is the filter on our eyes. Not to see everything perfectly or put a fake filter on to cover the imperfections but to see marriage for what it really is. 

God gives us a mate for a couple of reasons. The first is that it’s not good for man to be alone. He says that himself. The next reason is that our spouses complement us. My husband is great at seeing the analytical side of things while this is not my strong suit. Meanwhile, I am the visionary that sees creativity and potential where my husband doesn’t. How do you complement your spouse? How do they complement you? 

What we forget sometimes is that our partner is an extension of us. The decisions we make, words we say, success we have or don’t, where we go- it’s all a representation of our spouse. Are we acting, speaking, or moving in a way that’s respectful and shines a positive light on our marriage as a whole? Are we intentionally looking at our partner’s feelings and taking responsibility for triggering those feelings or giving empathy where it’s needed?

Additionally, can we see our partner’s weaknesses and help them to make them strengths? More importantly, are we allowing our partner to help us with our own weaknesses?

Are we seeing and accepting our spouse’s influence? 

The third filter that must be present is on our heart. The heart is where the spring of life flows from. The filter doesn’t go on our physical heart but rather on our emotions. 

I have seen too many relationships fail because one partner couldn’t forgive their spouse. The filter we put on our hearts helps us to remember the intentions of our spouse, who they are at their core, and forgive them when their moment of weakness gets the best of them. 

Pent up resentment is like a cancer that slowly eats away at a relationship. Not seeing things from the other’s perspective makes one intellectually arrogant, contemptuous, and entitled. Showing empathy and acceptance, loving our spouse for who they are instead of who we expect them to be, forgiving their imperfections and helping them to be a better version of themselves every day- this is the purpose of the three filters. 

Which filter do you need to activate more often? Which do you do well with? 
Your coach, 

Kameran 

Do you have the life you want?

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You say between 150-300 words a minute to yourself. How often do you stop to analyze that self-talk? Is it mostly positive or negative? Self-talk is personal and specific. 

We don’t get what we want in life. We get what we expect, unless what we want and what we expect are the same thing. Think about the people who always seem to have things going right for them. Have you ever had a conversation with those people? Most likely, their way of talking is more positive and a “life works for me” kind of attitude. Those who seem to have a black cloud hanging over their head? Well, their conversations probably exhibit that black cloud as well. 

Our thoughts become our words which become our actions which then become who we are. 

I’ll give you a personal example. When I was in high school and college, I had extremely low self-esteem. I didn’t believe I was beautiful, successful, driven, smart or anything positive. When I looked in the mirror, I saw (and told myself) I was fat, ugly, dumb and frumpy. I compared myself to my friends a lot. When I started dating a boy and stayed with him all through college. I knew he wasn’t the right guy and even had a few other offers but because of my self-talk, I didn’t believe they were actually serious offers. I didn’t believe I could get anyone better or have a better life than the path that I was on. So I married that guy and for 12 years, I was miserable. I continued to tell myself negative things about myself, my life, and my circumstances. Then, in 2012, the worst (and in some cases the best) year of my life- I started changing the script in my head. I deserved better. I could do better for myself and my child. I was a good mom. I was good wife material. I started reading self-development books and listening to different music. Little by little, I started changing myself into a more positive, more capable, better version of myself. 

I got divorced, got a better job, moved to a different state where I knew only one other person, made friends- GOOD FRIENDS, and started expecting happiness and prosperity. Can you guess what happened? That’s exactly what I got. 

I created a better life for myself! I met my dream guy, got married again, quit the job I knew I wasn’t right for anymore and started doing what I LOVE. I am still a good mom to now two kids instead of only one. I have the life I was always jealous of others having, because I created it. I expected it and I told myself I was worthy of having it! 

My marriage now is so much better than my first and even better than this marriage was at the beginning! My self-talk still wasn’t fantastic when Moe and I got married. Better, but not great. I realized that to have a better marriage, I had to have a better me. 

That starts with the thoughts that I tell myself each day. I don’t say things like “I’m a hot mess. I’m dumb, fat, etc.” anymore. I say things like “I did a really good job on that post. I tried my best and my best is good enough. I didn’t get everything I wanted to get done today but what I did was what I was supposed to do. The energy I had today was the energy I was supposed to have.” I don’t shame myself for setting off the smoke detectors making dinner because I was trying to overly-multi-task. I say things like “eh. It happens. I’ll do better next time.” 

If your self-talk is dragging you down and creating a cesspool of negativity in your marriage, I would encourage you to check out my program that I open once a quarter- Better Me, Better Us. This program is for people who are ready to better themselves in order to better their marriage. It’s for people who want a better relationship but their partner isn’t on board with therapy, coaching or self-development. If you’re ready, there’s a lot you can do on your own. Doors are officially open exclusively for people reading this right now with an early bird pricing until November 20th as an “I’m grateful for you” token of appreciation! 

Cheers to a better, happier YOU!

Kameran

Is Your Filter Working?

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The transition from me being a life coach to a purpose coach to a relationship coach was weird to a lot of people. To me, I saw a bigger need and an even bigger impact I could make with my past experience of divorce, remarriage, blending a family, immigration, cultural differences and an interracial marriage. 

See, when relationships aren’t stable at home, every other part of people’s lives are in disarray. Children can’t focus in school and do significantly worse in retaining information. We aren’t as productive at our jobs. Even our social lives are in an upheaval. To me, by helping people with their marriages, I’m also helping people to sort their whole lives out, smooth things over, become more successful and more productive. Who wouldn’t want that? 

What makes some marriages successful while others end in divorce? 

In short, how well your filter works. That’s right, your filter. 

Successful marriages have a filter over their mouths, their eyes and their hearts. 

Filter your mouth.
Our tongue has the power to build others up or tear them down. How are you using yours? If you have a strong filter on your mouth, you’re more likely to speak to your spouse in a way that builds them up, creates a strong friendship and treats them with respect and love. We will speak words of wisdom and gentle truth. 

This means that when your wife comes in and says “does this dress make me look fat” and you know she’s gained a little weight, instead of saying “Yeah, it looks terrible. Your butt looks like a buick”, you will instead say something like “you’re beautiful no matter what! But, it’s not as flattering on you as this other option.” The second statement just hits a little differently than the first.

Instead of telling your husband he’s being a complete jackwagon, try saying something like “hey, your energy is a little off today and I feel like you are stressed. How can I help?”. 

There’s a scene in an episode of Yellowstone (premiere is on Sunday y’all!) where Kayce tells Monica that he thinks he’s a bad man and he says “I don’t tell you things I do because I don’t want you to think I’m a bad man. Cause I think I’m a bad man but if you think it, then it’s true.” We know we are old, fatter than we used to be, have more wrinkles, etc. But if our spouse points it out, it makes it true and we feel less. Less beautiful, intelligent, worthy. Don’t put your spouse in that position. 

Build them up. Be gentle with your words. Don’t do damage that might take years to repair. Remember that words have the power of life and death. 

Next week, in an effort to keep these less in length than the previous novels I’ve written, I’ll talk about the other two filters. 

For now, try a little growth work at home. Reflect on the words you’re saying to your spouse. What kind of words are you using? What do those words generate in their hearts? How can you soften your approach to have a bigger impact? 

Your coach, 

Kameran 

Can You Forgive?

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Have you ever said something to your partner and immediately regretted it just by the look on their face? 

It’s inevitable that you’re going to hurt and be hurt by your partner at some point in your marriage. Intentionally or unintentionally, it’s going to happen. What happens after the hurt is the most important part though. 

We have the tendency to bottle that hurt up, not talk about it, pull away and let the resentment build until one day something minor happens and we blow like Mount Saint Helens.

What if we choose to forgive, instead? 

A common misconception is that forgiveness is a feeling. It’s not. Forgiveness is a choice. When you harbor anger and resentment toward your partner, that’s a choice as well. 

Other misconceptions are that forgiveness means you pretend the hurt doesn’t matter or that you have to forget about it completely. Another is that you deny the hurt and hope it just goes away. Maybe you think your love will just magically resolve the hurt and everything will go back to normal. Sorry, that’s not forgiveness at all. 

Forgiveness is facing the issue in how we were wronged head on and having the hard conversations with our spouse. Those hard conversations are often looked at as a conflict to avoid. Instead, let’s start looking at them for what they could be- incredible connection pieces to help us grow together as a couple. Forgiveness is recognizing and managing our emotions as well as having empathy for the emotions our partner has as well. Above all, forgiveness means choosing to not hold the wrong that was done to us against our partner. 

Forgiveness is a process

Depending on the level of hurt, sometimes you have to forgive yourself or your partner for that hurt over and over again. There may be triggers that come up and remind you of the hurt, causing you to feel pain repeatedly. Choosing to repeatedly forgive again and again is the key. How?

1. Talk about the pain. 
When a topic is talked about, it loses the power it has over you. Discuss how you hurt your partner or how they hurt you. When things are left unaddressed, even if they’re small, they lead to a loss of intimacy. Like tiny chips in a concrete wall, eventually the wall will be unstable and broken down if enough is chipped away.

2. Apologize correctly.
First, apologize using your partners apology language. If you aren’t using their apology language, chances are, they don’t feel like your apology was genuine or complete. If you need to know your or your partner’s apology language, take the free quiz here. 

Also know that an apology does not include the word BUT. 

“I’m sorry I lost my temper and said hurtful things to you BUT I wouldn’t have said them if you hadn’t been so rude to me.” This is not an apology. This is blaming your partner. 

“I’m sorry I said those things to you in front of the kids. It was mean and disrespectful and I shouldn’t have treated you that way. It won’t happen again. Will you forgive me?” This is a proper apology. The next step is making sure it doesn’t happen again. 

Apologies without changed behavior are nothing more than manipulations.

3. Forgive.

Forgive even when you don’t feel like it. Forgive out of love and as a stepping stone to connection, healing and unity. 

What will you forgive your partner for today?

Your coach, 

Kameran 

P.S.- November kind of snuck up on me but the annual gratitude and attitude challenge is OPEN! Every year, I email out a different journal prompt every morning the month of November to help you grow as an individual and become the highest version of yourself. They vary in topics and can be used as a journal prompt, conversation connect with your spouse or simply as a reflection piece for the day. If you’d like to participate, subscribe here! We start on Sunday! 

The Power of “And”

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When you stand on the beach and look out at the ocean during high tide, especially as a storm rolls in, the waves are high. The crashing against the shore is soothing, beautiful and at the same time fierce and dangerous. 

The power of “and” is intense and often replaced with or. 

So often we get caught up in needing to be one thing, we forget that it’s ok for us to utilize the “and” in us as well. 

Society has these unrealistic expectations that we’re all supposed to adhere to and live beyond. Honestly, just thinking about it is exhausting and I call bull. Bull on the whole thing. 

We need to stop masking the truth and start normalizing reality. Living for what life realistically is. Not that you need it but here’s your permission to do just that. 

Be madly in love with your husband and still want to put super glue on the toilet seat if he leaves it up one more time. He probably has things that irritate him about you and still loves you with everything he has too.

Love your children fiercely, be supremely grateful for them and the opportunity to raise them and still want to lock yourself in the closet with nothing more than a bag of chocolate, a bottle of wine and your tears of frustration from the day, week, or season of life right now. You’re not alone.

Have wonderful intentions to clean the whole house and get none of it done because your children needed you more. This season won’t last forever.

It’s ok to have crazy wild dreams and work a job that’s mediocre as you fulfill them. You have bills to pay.

It’s completely “normal” to feel defeated in your business and passionate for your mission at the same time. Entrepreneur life isn’t for the faint of heart. 

Unpopular opinion but no less of a fact- It’s ok to disagree with people and still be kind to them. Period.

Set boundaries with people and still love them from afar. If they throw a fit about the boundary, that’s just proof it needed to be set in the first place.

It’s ok. Believing that you have to be one thing without the other is unrealistic. You can be both. The shame that’s cast upon you for that isn’t a sign there’s something wrong with you. It’s a sign there’s something wrong with societal norms. It’s a sign the person who’s shaming you for being both probably hasn’t come to grips with their own reality. 

Their projected pain and expectations are not yours to receive. 

Grace, acceptance and understanding that what you’re feeling when you feel both is completely normal- that’s yours to receive. 

Your coach, 

Kameran 

What Do Your Habits Say About Your Marriage?

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Think back to January 1, 2021. Did you make the New Years Resolution to have a better marriage? Now you’re almost through October and as you look back, not much has changed? 

It’s not too late! You still have 71 days left in the year! That’s a lot of time to make a BIG difference! 

When you look at the big changes over time, they never happened with one big event anyway. It started with a few small habits, a few tweaks and changes here and there and after time, voila! HUGE CHANGE! 

Start with things you’re already doing.

You already pack your spouse’s lunch- include a note of appreciation. When you watch TV together at night- hold their hand or share a blanket.  Eating dinner is a given- help them clean up afterward. When you wake up in the morning, make a point to say good morning before reaching for your phone. Put your phone background as a picture of the two of you together so when you reach for your phone 86 times a day like every other average American (yes, that is a real statistic), you’ll see their face and remember to send a nice text, communicate the time you’re coming home or just feel some sense of appreciation for being their partner in life. 

Habits are often thought to be a verb- something you do. They’re not. The word habit is actually a noun which means it has to be created. It needs to be attached to something you’re already doing so it’s easier to do and not forget. It’s also something that if done consistently, over time makes a big impact! 

Habits are the reason for a relationship’s downfall and for a relationship being strong! When you have poor habits that prioritize your kids, your job, the television, social media, etc. You aren’t prioritizing your marriage. So the marriage breaks down. What you put intentional effort into is what will become stronger over time. Just like muscle groups. When you work it out intentional effort, it gets stronger. 

What habits will you be implementing? I’d love to know! Comment below!

 Your coach, 

Kameran 

Are you the intruder in your marriage?

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You know in a traditional wedding ceremony where the officiant repeats the bible verse Mark 10:9 “Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate”.

I have always loved that part, thinking that it was a way to keep people from coming between the bride and the groom. 

What if that verse isn’t just meant to keep other people out of our marriage though? What if we are the ones separating our own union? 

For example, do you ever feel like your spouse spends more time on their phone than they do in conversation or connection with you? When you wake up in the morning, do you scroll social media before you even say good morning to your love? 

I recently heard Kevin Hart say that his world was rocked and he had to reprioritize his life when he was told that he was “married to his job and dating his family”. Is work coming between you and your spouse? 

Growing up, I had a friend that lived across the street and her mom and dad always put each other before the kids. Even at 7 and 8 years old, I noticed and admired that. The concept of putting your spouse’s needs before the kids is commendable and rare. Of course, there are exceptions like if you have an infant that needs fed or whatnot. For the most part though, do the kids come first or second on your priority list? 

One of the reasons I divorced my first husband was that he could never set the boundary with his mother when she called and asked for money or didn’t respect the boundary I had set. Are in-laws intruding in your marriage? 

Here are some other possible “intruders”: 

  • outside hobbies and interests (hunting season anyone?) 
  • TV 
  • Friends
  • Addictions
  • Affairs
  • Church functions 

What you invest the majority of your time in directly correlates to what you value most. If you put more time into your phone than you do connection with your spouse, your value is not on your marriage but on the highlight reel of other’s lives. 

Reflecting on those values and the time put into your marriage, if you find yourself saying “Well, life just happened”, chances are that the bond you have with your spouse is fragile. 

So how do you get out of the habit of valuing the wrong things?

Understand that your marriage is only as strong as the value you put on it. If you want a Target brand marriage, make a couple tweaks but mostly keep doing what you’re doing. If you want a Louis Vuitton marriage, you’re going to have to pay a higher price. 

Meaning, you’re going to have to lay out a plan. That might mean no phones in the bedroom, no screens after 9 PM, setting boundaries with family, friends, work, etc. Getting help with addictions and affairs or your marriage as a whole. Cutting out what is lower on your list of values and starting new habits that give meaning and priority to what’s most important to you and your goals.

Take another part of the marriage ceremony, the “forsaking all others” into consideration. Forsake what is coming between the connection you and your spouse have. 

As always, if you need help with this or feel that you and your spouse aren’t aligning on what you value, email me at coaching@recognizingpotential.com and let’s do a pop-up session together to help you get on the same page! 

Cheers to your marriage!

Your coach, 

Kameran 

P.S.- have you signed up for the  Good to Great! The 31 day marriage challenge yet? It isn’t your typical “send a cute text” challenge. This is a deep dive into continuous issues, healing and building of a union. Every day you’ll get a short audio lesson, a devotional and some connection challenges do complete emailed directly to you at 5 AM. You’ll spend every day in October in the word, creating a better you and a better marriage. $31 for 31 days! 

Hey! You need a sandwich!

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As I was working with a client a few days ago, he was talking about how he sees the patterns in his life and he sees the things he’s doing wrong but he feels he falls short in the application process. I commended him on recognizing this as it’s a commonality amongst most of the world right now. Yet, only few are able to pinpoint the patterns in the first place and even less are able to apply the discipline needed to change.

Application, it’s comes with responsibility, intention and thought. In order to apply what you’ve learned, you have to first be mindful of your thoughts, actions and self. 

Let’s say you’re sitting on the couch, watching Outer Banks on Netflix, because honestly if you’re not, what are you actually doing with your life? All of a sudden, you realize you’re hungry. Do you sit there and stay hungry? Of course not! You’ll get up and go to the kitchen to apply the steps you’ve learned in how to make yourself something to eat. Changing your physical state of getting off the couch and going to the kitchen is the first step in changing your mood, your health and your well-being. 

It’s no different in life. Reflecting on what’s working and what’s not is a key lesson I teach in all of my courses. The importance of reflection is paramount in creating the life you desire and making sure it’s in tandem with what God has called you to do. What’s not working is equivalent to being hungry. Changing your state, changing the habits or the process to what isn’t working so that it does work better for you is the same as getting off the couch. Now here’s the tricky part. People usually get lost on their way to the kitchen. 

People have the tools to change their lives. They know to drink more water, eat healthier, get more sleep, set boundaries, etc`. They know that their marriage isn’t working and that they keep having the same arguments over and over. They know that the job they get up for and reluctantly travel to every single day doesn’t fulfill them and they might even know what does. But something gets in the way of the application to change their state or as stated in the example, to make the food that will satisfy their hunger. 

This week, I challenge you to look at where you’re lacking application and to finish the process of changing your state. 

Is fear holding you back? The feeling of fear is real but is your fear a made up scenario or a probable reality? Is laziness or lack of motivation holding you back? Is it lack of discipline? Lack of resources? Are you saying yes to too many things so your plate is too full and you’re overwhelmed? Has this lead to you putting yourself last and you simply need a shift in priorities? What is the setback? How can you change that to be a setup for success?

How are you going to change your state this week? By changing your state, how will that impact the rest of your life for the better?

Need some accountability? Reply to this email and let me know what you’re going to change and how it will impact your life! I’ll send you a message later in the week to check on you. Not sure where you went wrong? Reply anyway and let’s get you booked for a pop-up coaching call so we can get you on the right track! 

I believe in you! I believe that these next 3 1/2 months can be super powerful if you’re intentional about making them so! 

4 Ways to Fix Your Marriage By Yourself

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We were about a year and a half into our marriage. He’s playing video games and I’m winning an academy award for best actress in a drama series entitled “I Never Get Any Help Around Here”. At one point he told me to shut the f*#k up and like a fighting bull, I just saw red. I had a Sprite can in my left hand. It’s important to note here that I am not an athlete and I am not left handed. I’d maybe taken 2 sips out of that can when he said those magic words and I threw it. Non-dominant hand, non-athlete, perfect precision. It hit him in the side of the head, sticky sprite went everywhere and in a half a milli-second, I realized what I’d done.

Fast forward to when Moe and I married 9 years after the Sprite can incident, I was proud of myself for having done a lot of inner work in my singlehood. However, I still had a lot more to do. We still had a lot of work to do as a couple as well. But in traditional Arab culture, men going to therapy, getting mental health in general or talking about feelings? You have a better chance of being struck by lightning. However, I could see that even though things weren’t as bad as my first marriage, they weren’t fantastic either.

Keep in mind this is wayyyyyyy before I became a coach but I point it out because I always keep it real and raw with you all and because these are things you can do to fix your own marriage without being/having a coach or having the participation of your spouse.

1. Commitment
You have to be all in. I’m talking betting a million on black and not waivering for a second. You may be doing the hard work and wading through piles of elephant dung for months before you see results so if you’re thinking you’re going to see results in a couple weeks and everything is going to be hunky dory, sorry friend. I’m about to burst your bubble. How long it takes varies with every couple. Commit to why you’re starting this journey. Write it down in multiple places and look at it multiple times a day. It’s the only thing that’s going to keep you going when things get hard, and they will! 

I will also note that this can’t be a “well they’re not working on the marriage so I shouldn’t have to either.” That’s not going to work. It’s selfish and immature. You’re right, it’s not fair. But I’m pretty sure that nowhere in the Bible or any marriage book ever written does it say marriage is always fair. It’s not. Marriage is a commitment, not a convenience.

2. Control
You can’t control your spouse. You can’t make them love you more, help you more, listen more or communicate better. You can’t control how or if they respond in an argument or conversation. You can only control you. Is it hard to control your anger when your spouse is yelling and you want to lash out too? A billion times YES! But it can and must be done. In order for things to change, things have to change. Control YOU. Control your tone, body language, communication, responses, texts, all of it. Control what goes into your brain. If you’re hanging out with people who subscribe to the spouse bashing culture, watching shows about cheating and disrespect, etc. That’s what you’re going to exhibit. Read books on marriage. Change your social media followings to be more marriage focused and less negative. 

3. College Study Habits
You have to become a student of your spouse and of yourself. Study like your entire degree depends on the test coming up. What are your and your spouse’s love languages, apology languages? How did they grow up? What’s the dynamic they learned? What are some of the mindsets they learned and why do they think, act, talk, walk and work the way they do? Are they sensitive? Are they cold hearted? What are their triggers? How can you answer all of these questions about yourself? When you know this, apply it! This is the step that everyone seems to miss. They have the answers but application seems to get lost in translation.

4. Forgiveness
I leave this one last because in all honesty, it’s probably the hardest and the most important. For your marriage to move forward, you have to forgive yourself and your spouse. That doesn’t mean you forget the trauma, the fighting, the triggers but you do forgive them for they know not what they do. Sincerely, marriage doesn’t come with a user’s manual. Everything we know comes from what we’ve learned in past relationships and relationships we’ve seen by those we grew up around. Hurt people hurt people. If you know in your heart of hearts that your spouse loves you deeply, they probably don’t want to hurt you intentionally. But, they’re hurt and wanting to defend that hurt. Forgive them and yourself for the same reasons. That means you cannot bring up past hurts. You must let it go. If you need to talk it through first, do so but after that and forgiveness has been offered, that’s it. It’s in a vault and cannot be brought up again. If you are triggered in the future, address the pattern and the current behavior. Do not say things like “You always do this.” True forgiveness is going to be the key to having peace and less resentment.

If you resonated with this and want more, consider joining Better Me, Better Us. We cover all of this as well as codependency, steps to getting rid of insecurities, becoming your highest self, and you have full voxer access to me every week day. Think of it as constant coaching for 6 weeks and 6 live coaching sessions. 6 month payment plans are available if needed as well. The group is open now for 10 phenomenal people. Doors close Sept 3. We start Sept 6. 

Cheers to your marriage!

Are you qualified?

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When you were little and people would ask “What do you want to be when you grow up?” you answered with whatever your dream career was at the time with such pride and confidence. There wasn’t a question or concern that it wouldn’t happen. The next week that career dream would change but the level of confidence and pride that you answered with certainly didn’t. 

We are all that way and yet somewhere along the way, fear set in. Someone, maybe society, maybe a person we know and love told us we couldn’t. We couldn’t live into that dream because of one reason or another and our faith in ourself began to fade. The belief that we truly could be anything melted into becoming an adult and taking care of responsibilities. 

Did you choose your career or was your career chosen for you based on a set of circumstances? Or maybe based on someone telling you that you needed to “just pick something and get out of college”?  If you had it all to do over, would you choose something else? What would it be? 

Did that doubt creep back in? “Oh but I couldn’t ever actually do that. I’m too old/young/fat/skinny/out of the loop/busy to start over…the list of excuses is endless. 

Now I’m here to tell you this. In the Younique program we talk a lot about taking the risk to go. Moving, taking the step that God is calling you toward and borrowing His faith in you the way that a toddler borrows their own parent’s faith when they’re learning to walk. They aren’t sure that they can take those steps and be successful at walking but their parents know and that’s good enough for that sweet baby. We also talk a lot about the fact that God bestows a certain recipe of gifts, talents and abilities within each of us. Every single person’s mix is different than anyone else’s and that’s what makes us unique. It’s also what makes us so dang good at what we are called for. Qualified. These are our qualifications. It’s not the job of society or our family or friends to tell us what we can’t do. It’s not the job of our subconscious to interrupt and tell us that we can’t or won’t be successful at whatever the feeling of greatness is calling us to do. It’s our job to borrow the belief in ourselves from God, take the risk and move. 

God doesn’t call the qualified. He qualifies the called. By answering that call and accepting the growth and gifts He is giving you, you’re able to step into your calling with purpose, confidence and pride just the way you answered when you were little. You can do what you’re called to do because you’re the only one with the magic mix that you have! After a while you won’t have to borrow that belief anymore. You’ll have your own belief in yourself that this is where you belong and what you’re meant to do. 

I had no idea what a life coach was when I first completed the Younique course and at the time, nobody on this earth needed a life coach more than my hot mess express self. But here I am 3 years later, the best version of myself I’ve ever been with the happiest, healthiest marriage I never thought I’d have and while I don’t even pretend to have it all together, I am supremely satisfied with my growth and the life I’ve built intentionally  and my calling to help others do the same. 

If you’re wanting that too, click here and let’s make that happen. Maybe God’s waiting for you to jump so he can start qualifying you too! 

XOXO, 

Kameran 

The #1 Complaint of Women

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I CAN’T BELIEVE I FORGOT IT!

Last night we went to the grocery store. I’d already spent the last two hours planning meals for the week, making the grocery list and praying that the grocery stores had stocked what I needed for this week. That winter storm straight up took Houston OUT! Remember the toilet paper shortage in 2020? Yeah, that’s coffee creamer right now. You cannot find good coffee creamer An-y-where! #FirstWorldProblems

Before leaving, I’d grabbed a bottle, made sure the diaper bag was stocked, grabbed a Yeti of Hot water to heat the bottle and could’ve bet my life on the fact that I grabbed the diaper bag too. Two hours later when I needed said bottle, I had the hot water and a fussy baby but….no diaper bag or bottle. I was so irritated that I couldn’t find it! After going all the way back home, my husband found it on the chair, right where I’d left it. How could I have forgotten the most important item for my baby? HELLO!

After a short shame spiral, I remembered a post I’d read on Facebook earlier in the week asking what the number one complaint of all women was in their marriages. Mental overload. 

I realized that it’s not only women who are married and not only pertaining to married life. It’s mental overload in general. More people than ever are coming to me for coaching. Lost, lonely, questioning their career choice, their abilities as a parent, their abilities as a spouse, and completely bogged down with decision overload. 

Where do we go for Spring Break that won’t break the bank? Where do we go that’s actually open because of Covid? Do I want to quit my job? Do I want a different career path? Do I start a business? Do I want a nap or to clean the house? Is my headache because of dehydration or something else? What do we make for dinner? When was the last time my kid had a well check? What’s due for my job? How many times have I run this load through the washer? Is this chicken in the fridge from three days ago or three weeks ago? My kid has what form due for middle school class selection? That expiration date is 2021, that’s a ways a way. Oh wait, we’re in 2021. What the….? 

Mental Overload. It’s a very real thing and I’m just going to say, if you’re not experiencing it, you are either a unicorn or a liar. 

I’m not sure there is one right answer to overcoming the mental overload but what I can say is that GRACE is the most important help right now. Grace for yourself and grace for others. Communication is second. Send the friendly reminders for dates and commitments others are involved in. Set alarms for yourself. Write the lists. If someone forgets something, understand that it’s probably not intentional. It’s probably because they’re just as mentally overloaded as you are. If you receive a friendly reminder and didn’t need it, that’s fine. Accept it with grace and thank them for sending it anyway. There may come a time when you do need it. Third, ask not how you can help. I’m finding that people’s response of “oh, nothing. It’s ok” or “I’ve got it” is just as canned as “I’m fine” when you ask how they’re doing. Ask your spouse if you can meal plan this week or what chore is at the top of their list. Ask what decisions need to be made that are weighing them down and how you can be a part of that process. Ask what meal your friend who just had surgery would like. Ask specifics. Can you take your niece and nephew for the day to help your sister in law out? Can you come sit with your new mom friend and do her dishes or fold her laundry or can you drop a coffee at her doorstep because she’s not in the mood for company but really just needs a pick me up? 

When someone says they forgot something or they sound like they’re really down on themselves, simply offer grace. A sincere “it’s really ok. Don’t worry about it.”

When that someone is you, look in the mirror and say that same response out loud. 

XOXO,
Kameran

P.S.-  Today is my 37th birthday! If you are questioning your purpose, wanting a different career or wanting to dig deep into who you are and who you were made to be, I am running a flash sale until this Friday on the YOUNIQUE course! 37% off! It’s normally $1,794 but this week only it’s $1,133 paid in full! Payment plans are available!! This is THE course that pulled me out of my depression 3 years ago, gave me the neon flashing sign from God that put me into coaching and gave me the ability to wake up every day knowing without a shadow of a doubt that this is what I was made for! I leave every coaching call with more energy than when I got on the call. This is the ONLY program I have that is not relationship based and I will always keep it because it’s helped so many and I believe so strongly in what it does for every single person who takes it! If this sounds like what you need, get in NOW! I only open it up twice a year and it will NEVER be priced this low again! Click here to sign up!

Priorities

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Teaching Kindergarten full-time, tutoring on the weekends, coaching a full calendar, raising 2 boys, one being a 3 month old who still isn’t sleeping all night with a husband that’s gone 20-23 days a month, maintaining a thriving marriage, and engaged in a rigorous weight loss plan. I’m sure there are more hats that I’m wearing as well but this is the brunt of it. 

This is my life for another 115 days 20 hours 48 mintues and 47 seconds. Less than that by the time you read this. After that, I’m done teaching forever and I’ll only be coaching. I’m absolutely not complaining. I’m grateful! Excited! ..and maybe a little crazy. In the last couple weeks though I’ve been asked how I’m able to manage all of it and also why I haven’t put out a podcast episode since August 26th.

“Did you quit your podcast?” 

The answer is no. I’m still cranking out ideas and possibilities for interviews and trying my darndest to breathe life back into it but the long and short of it is that I’ve learned three important lessons since September 1. 

1. If it’s not giving me energy, fulfillment or income, it’s not a priority. 

2. Waiting until I have everything perfect before starting something only holds people back. 

3. I am not a robot. 

Number 1, it’s simple. Things that drain you of energy when your tank is already pretty rationed out in the first place have to go. They may not have to go to the trash but they do have to go to the back burner. This is a season, not a lifetime. I’ll pick the podcast up again when I have time and energy to devote to it. It’s also not generating fulfillment like coaching clients does. Anything you can do in times like this where it’s really just organized chaos and living day to day that breathes life back into you, do more of that! 

Number 2, I used to procrastinate things so badly thinking that if I could just have everything right and laid out perfectly before starting, I’d be more successful. That’s not how entrepreneurship works and honestly, it’s not how successful ideas come to fruition either. Ideas come to life and become a success because people jumped and then looked. You plan as you go, tweak as you go, believe in yourself more than you do the thing you’re doing and have faith that if you do the work, the venture itself will work. You just have to start! 

Number 3 is a lot like number 1. You can do all the things but I teach this lesson in my Younique course that it’s vitally important to understand that you CAN do a lot of things but you MUST do only one thing. The CAN DO things are often times distractions that prevent you from getting to that MUST DO because they’re comfortable. The one thing you’re called to do is often disguised as hard work, something you think you know nothing about or something that is so far outside your comfort zone you don’t believe you are the right fit for it. God called Moses to lead the people out of Egypt and Moses flat out told God he had the wrong guy. God doesn’t make mistakes. The key is deciphering between what you’re letting become a distraction because you’re good at it and what you’re truly called to do. One thing. NOT all the things.

What’s the priority here?

What is the priority? Figure out the priority and you find the “balance”. Though if you listen to my podcast from when I was cranking consistent episodes you’ll find that it’s more about satisfaction and less about balance anyway. 😉 

XOXO,
Kameran

P.S.-  Not sure what your ONE THING is that you MUST DO? Email me at coaching@recognizingpotential.com and let’s talk. I have something for you! 

They’re called blind spots for a reason.

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One day last week I took Mason to school. I’ll preempt this by saying that we do a lot better when we can start our mornings slow and methodically. Fun fact, someone asked me once why I wanted to be an entrepreneur and I told them it was because I didn’t want to have to wake up to an alarm clock. That’s still true. Anyway, no matter how much I front load this kid- put your snack in your back pack, lay out your clothes, set your alarm, etc etc the night before, he will inevitably forget something the next morning. This time, it was his mask. 

The long and short of it is that I was more than irritated at the lack of responsibility and the number of excuses he was spouting off like a broken faucet. In the midst of my “mom speech” and in response to him telling me that he believes he’s always responsible, I found myself saying “you don’t know your own blind spots.” 

I further explained in 11 year old terms what that meant, dropped him off, said I love you, and went about my day but I couldn’t get that one phrase out of my mind. 

Nobody knows their own blind spots. It’s why I have a coach I’ve invested 4 figures into and why my own client roster is almost full. We are all looking for help to see our blind spots. Where do we need more work? 

What part is holding us back, keeping us from reaching our fullest potential? What part of us as an individual is continually sabotaging our relationships? Everyone has a blind spot or even a few. Some are more toxic and hurtful than others. But without bringing them to light and working through them, we continue to stay stagnant, never moving forward into the best version of ourselves. Isn’t that the point of life, to grow and become the best version of you possible? 

I was working with a client this morning and she was talking about how far she’d come in the last 2 years. It’s so important to reflect on those wins but when I asked her why she started this journey in the first place her answer was shocking. Her ex-husband had made a comment that she needed to “stop acting like such a victim.” This one comment sparked a wildfire in her soul and fueled her personal development so that he, nor anyone else would ever be able to tell her she was a victim again. She’s not. She’s powerful, impactful, and thriving. She is truly an inspriation and living into the absolute best version of herself every day. All because her blind spot was made visible. Granted, the fuel was significantly more blazened by the person who said it but the results have given her more confidence in herself and her abilities. She’s a better mom, a better teacher and a better friend throughout! 

The beauty is in the process. Deep within the hard. It’s undeniably hard to self-reflect and get honest with what needs work. It’s also liberating, rewarding and ego-boosting when you can honestly say you’ve done that work and are making the world, even if it’s just your tiny corner of it, better because of the work you did. 

So what version are you living into right now? How can you bring your own blind spots to light?

XOXO,
Kameran

P.S.- Have you checked out the 3 day relationship bootcamp I offered in my facebook group last week? It opened the doors to my 1:1 relationship course BETTER ME, BETTER US. This course is for anyone who knows they want a better relationship but their partner isn’t as committed to the personal development journey just yet. Check it out here.

Are you really helping?

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The story goes that a man comes in and asks his wife for help on something but before it’s all said and done, the wife completes the whole project for her husband because “it’s just easier that way.” 

In a couple weeks, he asks her for “help” on a similar project as before. She agrees but does the project for him again. This repeats multiple times throughout the course of the year and finally one day she says “Why don’t you learn to do this yourself? Why do I always have to help you with this?” 

The answer is within herself. When he came to her the very first time asking for help, instead of doing the project for him, she could’ve taken the time to teach him how to do it on his own right then and there. Thus, preventing herself from the irritation and time of having to do it for him repeatedly. “It was just easier”…but was it really? In the short term moment, maybe but big picture, was it really easier than taking a few extra minutes to teach him to do it himself?

As this situation unfolded before my very eyes, I heard him tell his wife “you’re more of a do the thing and I’m more of a ask for help on it kind of guy”. 

The problem is not with men and women. I see this issue with people of all ages, genders, stages in life, etc. We are becoming more and more a society of needing things given to us, done for us and asking not for help but to be enabled. Yes, I said it. 

See, helping is doing something for someone who cannot do it for themselves. Enabling is doing something for someone who can do it for themselves…a lot of the time, “because it’s just easier.” 

In that moment where we believe that it’s just easier if we do the project, several things are happening cognitively. First, we believe that it will take a lesser amount of time if we just do it ourselves instead of teaching others to do it. Secondly, we so arrogantly believe on some level that if we do it, at least it will be done right. Third, on that same level, we don’t believe in the ability or intelligence of the person asking for help. Think about that for a second. We are so arrogant to believe that we are better, smarter, more equipped to do the task than our counterpart. I will also add that too much of this starts to become a breeding ground for contempt- one of the most toxic traits to have infiltrate a marriage.

At the same time, let’s say for a minute that the person asking for help truly has the intention of learning in their asking for help. Well, you’ve just taken away their chance to better themselves by agreeing to help but doing it for them. 

Let’s flip that coin now and say that the person asking really doesn’t want help but is asking so it sounds like they do. This is a manipulation tactic to get someone to enable them. It’s entitlement, selfish, lazy and crossing a boundary that says “my time is more valuable than yours so I’m going to care not about the time you’re going to waste in doing something I could do but don’t want to.” 

As a parent, it’s easier for us to do something for our children than to see them fail as they learn. But in that, aren’t we failing as the parent by doing things for our children instead of teaching them to be independent and thrive without us? 

As a spouse, it would be easier to do all the things our partner asks of us but if, in the end, we are continuously harboring negative feelings for our partner because of it, we really only have ourselves to blame for allowing the disrespect and agreeing to enable them. 

As a boss, how are you creating an environment that promotes self-improvement, learning, and being a self-starter but also asking for help when it’s truly needed? 

Where are you helping? Where are you enabling? How can you honor your own boundaries and create better time management for yourself by saying no? In situations where you are asking, do you truly need help to learn or are you asking to be enabled?

XOXO,

Kameran

Are you settling?

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Do you love your job? Are you passionate about it? 

I was working with a client the other day and she was talking about how other women, much younger with half her experience in her job are quickly advancing but she isn’t. I asked why she thought that was and her response blew me away. She said “because they’re passionate about what they do and I’m not.” I asked why she chose that job if she wasn’t passionate about it and her next response reminded me a lot of myself. “Because it made more money than the previous job, didn’t have the benefits but made more so I looked at it as a step up.” 
WOW. How many of us can relate? I know I can. I chose elementary education because I’d been in college for 4 years and changed my major 11 times. It was what I had the most credits in and I needed to be done. So a teacher I became. Then when I went back 4 years later, I started out in dietetics but when I got divorced half way through that program, dietetics wasn’t going to pay the bills as a single mom and neither was teaching. So marketing became the next settle. I’d settled in my first marriage because I truly didn’t believe I’d ever find anyone else. See a pattern here? 

SO much settling! How about dreaming? How about recognizing our potential, that one thing we can do like only we can do? How about that? How much time would I have saved if I would’ve thought about that instead? So I asked my client how often she dreamed. She scoffed and said “I don’t think I do. I stay where I’m at because I’m good at it and I’m afraid of failing in front of people.” Next question: If you knew you could do anything in the world and not fail, what would you do? “I don’t know. I’ve never thought about that.” Been there. But the the thing is, people aren’t thinking about you because people are selfish. They’re only thinking about themselves. People don’t worry about your failures because they’re too concerned about their own. 

How often do you dream? Do you let the negativity of other’s projections override your own belief in yourself? Do you stay where you are simply because it pays the bills and you’ve never thought about what you’d really like to do? For some, dreaming is really hard. It brings out the possibilities versus what truly is right here, right now. But your reality, as we talked about last week, is just a series of decisions you made in the past that led you to this point. So if you dreamed more, would you settle less and thereby gain the life you truly want?

I can tell you from my own experience that when I started dreaming, started believing in myself and stopped settling, my life went from constantly stressed and digging myself out of a hole to checking things off my vision boards right and left and being grateful that I had made different decisions that led me to the reality that I have now. 

So the question is, are you settling or are you making decisions that create the reality you desire most?

XOXO,

Kameran

P.S- Have you signed up for the Gratitude and Attitude challenge starting Nov 1? 30 days of gratitude (with prompts to help you) and a daily prompt to help you get to the best version of yourself. We start Sunday! It’s free and it’s going to be fantastic! 

Are you getting enough?

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I did a survey in my facebook group about a week and a half ago. How much sleep do you normally get on any average night? As someone who prioritizes sleep above food, water, or really any other need, I expected the results to be somewhere around 7-8 hours. I was shocked. 

Most of the women in my group are getting somewhere between 3 to 6 hours a night. THREE hours of sleep?! Y’all. That’s not a night’s rest. That’s a nap! 

I talk until I’m blue in the face about Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. I do this because I think it’s the basis of what makes the rest of our lives great and sadly, the bottom rung of it, our most basic needs, are not being met on a daily basis. The survey I posted is a prime example of that. Food, water, air, homeostasis, sex and sleep. How many of those are you actually meeting every day? 

We’ve always heard that adults need between 6-8 hours of sleep per night. Well, that’s not entirely accurate. The National Sleep Foundation says that statistic is just to function. To truly thrive, an adult needs 7-9 hours a night. This is merely an average. Some adults (like myself) need more like 9.5-10 hours to truly wake up feeling rested, rejuvenated and ready to crush the day. So what if we’re cutting that in half and not getting enough? 

Well first off, your cognitive abilities are slowed…like being drunk. You can’t think as clearly, communicate as well, or handle the obstacles life throws at you like you would if you were rested. Secondly, all you can concentrate on is how tired you are so you start habit stacking in the worst way. You add caffeine in the form of more coffee and soda. This causes your body to release even more cortisol (the belly fat hormone) which also taxes your adrenal glands. Because of the release of cortisol, your sweet tooth is triggered and you’re now adding an additional habit stack of reaching for all the junk food. This also adds to more fat storage because as your pancreas releases insulin to break down the food that’s then passed around to your muscles but rejected because you aren’t moving as much (because again, you’re too tired) so that energy is now stored as fat. Additionally, according to this article, coffee has a half life of 3-5 hours but your body also builds up a resistance to it causing you to need more and more in order to stay awake. So 10 hours after you drink the first cup, the caffeine starts to work and 10 hours after your last cup is when your body actually rests enough to sleep and sleep well. Is your mind racing when you lay down at night? Count backwards 10 hours. Were you still drinking coffee OR soda at that time? The caffeine is causing you not to sleep, but you “need” it in the morning to stay awake. See the complicated problem here? 

Our daily lives also play a part in not getting enough sleep. In my survey, many women weren’t going to bed at night because they felt they still had so much to do. This makes us fall into the life drifts of ambition and approval. Approval says we’ll never “be good enough” and ambition says we’ll “never do enough”. Put those together and you have a recipe for disaster that has your subconscious telling you that you’ll never be a good enough parent, spouse, person, or success story unless you (fill in the blank with any to do list item). But the reality is that you are already good enough and you already do plenty! But if you aren’t well rested, you can’t do anything to the best of your ability and you can’t be a good enough person if you’re a snappy jerk to everyone who says hello because you are exhausted. 

So how do you overcome this? A lot of willpower, change and a deep look into why you aren’t sleeping in the first place. 
1. Anxiety. I’ve been there. It’s a beast but you have to overcome your mindset in order to overcome your anxiety. Get a coach or someone to help you. 
2. Wein yourself off the caffeine and drink more water! Water will help energize you, leave you less dehydrated and help your overall health. It will also fill you up so you aren’t reaching for the sweet treats.
3. Put down the phone. The blue light is wrecking your serotonin levels and causing your brain to think you’re more awake, counteractive to the goal here. 
4. Stop telling yourself you’re a bad person if you don’t get the dishes done or the laundry or the house is a wreck. Really analyze WHY you’re breaking yourself in order to have this clean of a house. Wouldn’t you be able to be more efficient if you had the energy (from sleep- not caffeine) to do it? 
5. Delegate and/or Ask for Help! Do you have children? They NEED to be helping you. Teach them responsibility. Teach them to help out around the house. It takes everyone doing their part to make your household a well oiled machine. Same goes for your spouse. Team players here. At the same time though, nobody can read minds so everyone needs to know what you’d like done and how you’d like it done. Communicate your expectations. 
6. Priorities. Get ’em straight. If TV is higher on your priority list than sleep, we might need to take a look at that. 

Lastly, I have realized that this is such a struggle for so many that if you are truly ready to make a change and you’re not sure how to incorporate more/better sleep into your day, I am offering 60 minutes of sleep strategy coaching for $35. We will go over your routine and what keeps you up at night, revamp it and make a plan that works for you to help you get the sleep you need. All you need to do is implement the plan! Email me at coaching@recognizingpotential.com with 3 times that work for you in the next week and let’s get you to a place where you are less stressed, less depleted and better rested! 

XOXO,

Kameran

Is “NO” a struggle for you?

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I spent most of my life saying yes to everything anyone asked me to do or help with because deep down I feared that I would let them down if I said no. After all, why would they ask if they didn’t really need my help? 

About 3 years ago, I started recognizing that people would come to me quite often asking for help and I always said yes, even if I had a magnificent amount of loathing for whatever it was they were asking for. But when I needed help and actually swallowed my pride enough to ask for that help, those same people were rarely there to help me. OUCH!. 

That’s when I realized that everyone falls into one of two categories. Those who have no problem saying No and those who struggle with it daily. Guess which category is happier? Hint: it’s not the strugglers. 

Well my friend, here are a few reasons why saying no is so dang hard. 

You’re a people pleaser. 
Plain and simple, you’ve been conditioned to believe that it’s your job to make others happy, to comply, to be the helper, and to always do the right thing. That translates in your head as “I have to say yes because if I say no, people won’t love me as much. They’ll be mad and that doesn’t feel good.” This level of thinking isn’t exactly true. As a recovering people pleaser myself, I can tell you that the need for approval runs a lot deeper than being able to say no. Saying yes all the time is only one symptom of the need for approval. However, it doesn’t feel good when you disappoint others. But I challenge you to think about these questions. First, when you say yes but you really wanted to say no, how do you feel while you’re carrying out the task asked of you? Chances are you feel just as bad because you know you said yes when you didn’t really want to do this thing in the first place. This is a problem because not only are you now giving 50% effort in the task, you’re harboring a lot of irritation, resentment and maybe even anger. How is that helping the person who asked for the help? How is it helping you? 

Secondly, when you say yes but really wanted to say no, you’re giving away your power over your time, energy, and priorities. With your actions, you’re telling the other person that they come before yourself. So if you say no, you’re telling that person that “hey! I’m really sorry but I matter. My time matters. My priorities matter.” You’re affirming that whatever you’re saying yes to (more time with family, friends, yourself, your money, your other resources) is more important than what they were asking for. So now ask yourself, if this person is disappointed in you putting yourself and your happiness over them, how good of a friend/loved one are they really? Who does that say more about, you or them? 

Next, I say this a lot in my coaching. There is a massive difference between helping and enabling. Helping is doing something for others that they can’t do themselves. Enabling is doing something for others that they can do for themselves, they just choose not to. Those who are enabled once will continue to come back to you knowing you’ll never say no to them and you’ll continue to enable them. They are like a leech. They’ll suck the energy right out of you and never move on until you start putting yourself first! Along with that, how are you helping them live into their fullest potential if you’re constantly enabling them and never setting those much needed boundaries? 

You fear the feeling of guilt. 

This goes hand in hand with being a people pleaser but it also runs much deeper. Why do you feel guilty? Now ask yourself Why again and a third time. Maybe journal on this. When you hit that 3rd why deep, you’ll uncover a monsterous breakthrough. Feel free to email me when you hit this breakthrough and let me know what you uncovered. I love hearing stories of people leveling up! 

Here’s how to calm the guilt though because Lord knows, learning to say no is not an overnight experience. So start by saying something like “That sounds interesting, let me check my calendar” or asking “Can I think about it?” You can even politely say something like “You know, I’m just not sure that I’m the right fit for that job but I sure appreciate you asking/thinking of me!” You don’t have to bluntly say NO, just don’t immediately say yes. Remember, if your heart and soul aren’t in it, you’ll end up giving 50% and find yourself in the toxic realm of resentment and negativity. Which is more beneficial in the long run for both of you? 50% effort or 100% effort? Positivity and joy or anger and resentment? 

I saw a shirt about a year ago and while I probably wouldn’t have worn it much, I still love the saying-
If it’s not a HELL YES, it’s gotta be a No. 

XOXO,

Kameran