Faith and discouragement…what you MUST know to push forward…

Photo by Ron Smith on Unsplash

Now this is a topic many are afraid to Google. It has become a way of life for many as they deal with the trails of life and often become stuck in discouragement. One minute you’re feeling a little down and the next minute you’re complaining to everyone you know, cancel dinner with your friend and your voice is getting too loud when responding to the daily trials of parenthood. It’s important to ask “What are the causes of discouragement?” And if you’re a believer, “What is said about discouragement in the bible?”

You probably weren’t expecting this post to get biblical but here’s the truth…I’m a Christian. It’s the foundation of who I am as a woman, wife, mother, and all the many roles I play. So it will be interwoven in this blog as I merge all the parts of myself. No apologies. It’s important to note that my practice of counseling and coaching have always been guided by this identity however, it has never impeded my ability to help anyone who doesn’t share the same beliefs. 🙂

Now back to the topic at hand…

So where does discouragement even start? A basic definition is that it means to deprive of confidence, hope or spirit. It can begin when minor problems or pressures begin to affect your emotions. You might be more inclined to keep this to yourself at this stage but you’ll know it’s major when pressure mounts, your spirit is impacted and others begin to notice. Complain often? It’s understandable. You probably feel a need to vent and get confirmation you’re not losing your mind! Let’s take an example from the bible…

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9).

In this passage, Joshua is called to lead the children of Israel into the promised land. We can imagine it being a great challenge to engage in battle, claim land from its’ current inhabitants AND provide spiritual leadership. This challenge, however, was one in which God knew to provide words of strength and peace. Words have power. This scripture alone has lifted my spirit during the darkest of times. Using a combination of scripture, self-motivation, mindset work, prayer and meditation, you too can release yourself from the grip of discouragement.

Try some of these the next time you feel discouraged…

1. Take your favorite Bible scripture, write it on a post it note and put it on your bathroom mirror or another place you visit often.

2. Take time to pray or meditate. It is said that prayer is when we speak to God and meditation is when we are silent and wait to hear what he has to say to us.

3. Engage in positive mindset practice. One way you can do this is by embracing challenges as opportunities. For example, if you’re discouraged about finances, what lesson are you learning about your spending, saving habits? What are you learning about planning for the future? Even further, if you’re not where you want to be financially, what lessons were you taught about money as a child? Challenge those as often as you can. It’s a gift that we get to set new rules and standards as adults.

4. Seek support from a trusted friend or professional. It’s okay to admit you’re in the sunken place…just don’t stay there long. Maybe you have a friend who’s been through the same thing or maybe you’re experiencing severe discouragement and it’s time to seek out the help of a professional. You know you best so trust in your ability to make a good decision here.

Today’s post is meant to give you hope. Be strong and courageous as you embrace the challenges of life. Remember that you can’t go around them, going through them IS your only option so take a look at how you embrace challenges and identify where positive change can be made. It is my hope that you finish this post with inspiration and if you want more weekly inspiration, sign up for emails from your favorite Mindset Coach HERE.

My best,

Marquita

The Counselor’s Mindset Coach

Can you see the finish line?


Photo by Hello I’m Nik on Unsplash

I was listening to this YouTube video from Jon Gordon yesterday and he was sharing the moment when most marathon runners give up. Apparently, mile 20/26. I was shocked because you’d think if they make it that far, there’s a “I can’t give up, I’ve come too far!” mentality. 

Jon went on to say that people don’t quit when they’re one mile from the finish line because they can see it. The power of vision is huge! This got me to thinking about things in the past I’ve given up on. Lately I’ve been embracing everything from swimming to standing within 5 feet of my friend’s snake tank—both things I wouldn’t have attempted four years ago. So what changed?

In short, I did an overhaul on my mindset. It was much needed despite everyone thinking Professional Counselors must be the most positive people on earth! Nobody’s perfect people. In doing that work, a focus on practicing visualization had to happen to strengthen vision and belief. Do you have a vision? If you do, you have the power to make something special happen in your life. You’ve probably heard this phrase.

“If you can see it, you can achieve it.” 

If you’ve found yourself in a place where dreaming has come to a screeching halt, know that there’s hope. Sometimes doing it for ourselves alone isn’t the thing that pushes us and in fact, it is the case for many that playing big to help others keeps them going. Try these simple steps if you need to get back in touch with your vision.

  1. Decide what it is you really want. No holding back here. Imagine the sky is the limit!
  2. Commit to showing up. Let’s get real…not much is achieved without taking some form of action.
  3. Be willing to receive help. Often times we get stuck and give up because of that “Do it yourself.” mentality. We aren’t on earth alone. There are people strategically placed in your life for a reason. Ask for help.
  4. Embrace the challenges that may come. They are there to make you stronger. Remember that one day your story could impact millions!
  5. Keep going until your vision/dream has manifested. This step is important. If you’ve ever read “Think & Grow Rich,” you’ll know why. 😉

That’s all for today friends. I truly hope this blog post has inspired you to either identify your dream or recommit to the one you already have. If you’re a Professional Counselor looking for support around mindset, healing from burnout and removing mental blocks, I’d love to have you join my Facebook group, Mindset Healing for Counselors. You can join HERE.

With much gratitude,

Marquita (The Counselor’s Mindset Coach)

I Quit!!

What happens when excitement trades places with career burnout.

Burnout, a term described as a special type of work-related stress. According to the Mayo Clinic, it involves a state of physical or emotional exhaustion that also involves a sense of reduced accomplishment and loss of personal identity. This is something I’ve experienced personally in the field as a Professional Counselor and have also witnessed my colleagues suffer from it as well. It’s tough going through it yourself and sometimes knowing your co-workers are also burned out is a relief–it validates you as not going crazy! It’s also a warning sign that something’s not right about the organization you’re working for. So what happens when that initial excitement for your career fades?

 You might can relate to the anxiety as you drive in to work or enter a meeting. Maybe you spend your lunch breaks crying in your car or dreading that drive to the next client’s home. It can get hard to hold your head up while eating dinner with your spouse when you’re fighting back tears. I get you…I’ve been there and it wasn’t pretty!

So what can you do about it? “I quit!!” are the words that ran through my head often when I was in the field. Some days I meant it and other days it just felt good to let it out and feel like I had some sense of control. Ultimately, there are steps you can take to get a handle on burnout.

Steps to Burnout Freedom:

Step 1: Evaluate your options. Can you choose the type of clients you work with? Do you have flex time? Have you checked out other jobs you might be a good fit for? You don’t have to remain in a work situation that stresses you out to the max. We all have choices.

Step 2: Focus on healing. What would it look like for you to heal from burnout? Write it down. Visualize what the new you looks like. Does she take on less “extra” workload? Maybe she attends more professional development activities to get a break. Does the healed version of you actually take vacation instead of saying to herself “I can’t take off. My clients need me!”

Step 3: Seek support from a qualified professional. Now here’s where you can get creative. You’re a counselor so I imagine you already believe in the benefit of therapy. If you feel that would be the best option, find someone who’s a good fit. Some counselors have a hard time going to therapy because they don’t feel they have a mental illness. If that’s you, getting a coach to help you walk over the burnout bride to healing is also a great idea. (Shameless plug…I’m here for ya when you need me. 😉 You can always incorporate some healing strategies on your own as well. Exercise, better sleep hygiene, mindfulness and relaxing activities such as yoga or meditation can do wonders for you.

These steps aren’t meant to be overwhelming. It’s important that you realize how much control you have and increase your energy so you’re able to take an active role in your healing. If you want a safe place to vent and get support from other professionals who are also healing, visit my Facebook group “Mindset Healing for Counselors” at http://bit.ly/2GpI6mE . Until next time, love.

Marquita-The Counselor’s Mindset Coach