relationships

On the Path of Impeccability

Thursday, December 17th, 2015

When you are true to your life purpose, and in alignment with your code pf personal ethics, a shift in consciousness occurs. You are not afraid to embrace your truth and to let others know what that truth is.

On the path of impeccability, you walk in freedom. You can no longer pretend. What you tell yourself and others has to change. You can no longer use as an excuse, I don’t have enough time. You take responsibility as to whether or not you want to do something, or if you want to get together with a particular person.

You’re no longer able to honestly say, I can’t afford it. Instead you have to decide whether the potential benefit is worth what you have to do, or give, to get it. In the process of embracing this new and expanded consciousness, you reclaim your power and honer yourself.

Until next time, walk in freedom.

JOURNEY ON

“I’m called to inspire others to reignite the spark inside of them that has been dimmed by years of hard work and struggle.”

Mark

From “the Soul of Uncertainty.” A thought…in the midst of the storm, somewhere in the clouds and in the darkness there is a rainbow. Keep looking for it, and you’ll see it. Our lives are the same way. In the midst of the loose ends and uncertainty in our lives, there are possibilities and opportunities and rainbows. Enjoy them.

Mark Susnow knows change. He is an executive-life coach, life-discovery guide and recognized thought leader who inspires others to believe in themselves. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of Dancing on the River:Navigating Life’s Changes and Discover the Leader Within. Contact him for an initial complimentary session.

Respond Rather than React.

Thursday, April 25th, 2013

When we are passionate our energy level is at its highest. We’re excited.  Our energy level can also me at an intense level when we are expressing anger. When we are expressing anger, we are usually reacting to a particular event or circumstance.  Our expression of anger is the conduct that we have adopted, consciously or unconsciously, to express our frustration.

We only express our anger when we are no longer connected to our center. When we are not connected to our center, we are no longer connected to our personal power. It’s like turning on the light  switch when the power is turned off—nothing happens.

We won’t get the desired result that we would like and our sense of frustration gets greater. To “Get on the Positive Side of Change,”  we need to stand back and observe and diagnose the problem. There is usually a solution, but when we have lost our center and sense of perspective,  we aren’t able to see it. Once we regain our sense of perspective we can take positive action in a calm and positive way.  In the process we are responsive, rather than reactive.

JOURNEY ON

MARK

Mark Susnow, is an executive-life coach and recognized thought leader who inspires others to believe in themselves. He is passionate about life being an exciting journey of discovery. His enthusiastic and inspiring keynotes on change, leadership and connection thoroughly convey this message to his audiences. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of Dancing on the River: Navigating Life’s Changes and Discover the Leader Within.

Positive Side of Change—A Simple Technique for Changing your Thoughts

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Getting on the Positive Side of Change is an ongoing day to day challenge. If you have the right tools, you have a head start. In the last blog in this series, you were introduced to the power of gratitude.  It took me a while to get this concept. At first it seemed like I was sugar coating what was bothering me. And in spiritual circles you are taught to be grateful.

When we have a problem our tendency is to focus on it. At times that problem consumes us and we project into the future. If this problem continues  then what. Before we know it, we are in a bad mood and all we see are more problems.

By focusing on what you are grateful for, you shift the focus from what isn’t working in your life to what is. For example, instead of thinking about what you didn’t accomplish, think about what you did accomplish. Be grateful for that.

What I”m suggesting is that after meditation, focus on what you are grateful for.  Come up with at least ten different topics. You might want to begin with your health and the love in your life. When you think about it, there is love all around you. Be willing to receive it even though it might not be from a particular person. When you do this, it’s so liberating.

In that situation I express gratitude for the love that is in my life. If I would like more friends, I express gratitude for my ability to connect with others. If I would like more business, I express gratitude for my ability to attract clients to me. This little technique that is so powerful only takes about 30 seconds.

Remember what you focus on expands.  You attract to you what you think. I think you get the idea.

In the next few blogs, we’ll continue to focus on gratitude…this practice has changed my life.

ENJOY THE JOURNEY

MARK

Mark Susnow, is an executive & life coach and thought leader who inspires others to believe in themselves. He is passionate about life being an exciting journey of discovery. His enthusiastic and inspiring keynotes on change, leadership and connection thoroughly convey this message to his audiences. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of Dancing on the River…Navigating Life’s Changes and Discover the Leader Within.

The Language of Love

Saturday, February 9th, 2013

The deepest principle of human nature is the craving to be appreciated.

William James

We look to relationships to satisfy this craving. It’s our natural state to be loving. Unfortunately with the busyness of our lives we forget what that natural state is. There is nothing better than a great relationship. You feel that you belong. You feel empowered. You feel an incredible aliveness. But ultimately we have to learn to have a great relationship with ourselves. When we do, it enriches everyone with whom we meet.

We live in a relational world. At a fundamental level what we all want is to deeply connect with others, but we’re not sure how to do that.  Successful relationships transform our families, schools, institutions, governments and the world we live in.

When you connect with your heart, body and soul, connection occurs in an instant.  Connection begins with you, by your awakening to your true nature as a spiritual being having a physical experience. It’s “a knowing” that you are connected to a power greater than you.  Connection is a path and like most paths, there will be challenges along the way.

The good news is that connection can be cultivated. Before I embarked upon my coaching path I was a decent connector when I wanted to be, but I didn’t consider it one of my strengths. This has changed over the years.

My first coach gave me a new way to look at connection, which has been instrumental in my cultivating the awareness that I have now. From that moment on, I became increasingly aware of how much I liked to connect with others.

The ability to connect with others opens up a whole new world. Connection transcends stereotypes and judgments,creating fertile ground for a new dialogue, a dialogue not constrained by history, but open to common ground for a consciousness of possibility. By connecting, you make the ultimate gift to yourself and to others. It is when we give of ourselves that we receive the ultimate joy.

Our bigger challenge is to receive from others. Many of us find it difficult to be supported and to let others do thingsfor us. This might seem like somewhat of a paradox, but whenwe give to others we remain in control. It’s only in the act ofreceiving that we give up control and allow ourselves to bevulnerable. It is in that moment when we feel the most connected to others. By receiving the gift from another, we are making the ultimate gift to them. Until we allow ourselves to receive this gift, we won’t be able to experience the depth and intimacy that we are seeking.

Let me share with you a few strategies that I have found effective in cultivating more connection in my life. After meditation, I express gratitude for the gift of connection that I have with others. Perhaps in the beginning of this practice I didn’t feel or believe it totally. But over time I’ve noticed that my ability to connect has become a strength. I’m certainly more aware of the connections that I do have.

Being curious is invaluable. In some ways, I’ve transformed being curious into a fun game. Whenever I go to a gathering, I’m curious with whom I’ll connect. With so many of us asking the same questions, I’m curious about what I might learn when I connect with them. In the last few years I’ve expanded upon this practice. Before I left for a recent trip for Kauai, I wondered about with whom I would have the best connection. This set the tone and kept me curious during the whole trip. The synchronicity was amazing.  We reach a time in our life, when those remarkable meetings seem to occur more often.  Synchronicity then becomes the norm, rather than the infrequent occurrence.

Each time that I experience one of those chance encounters that provides a missing piece to the puzzle, there is a thought that deeply resonates within me. It makes greater sense to me now than it ever did.  As we continue to evolve, we attract to us our tribe of kindred souls.

We are the source of the connection that we crave, which is fueled by our ability to come from the deep place of love within. Unfortunately too many of us are looking to find love outside of ourselves—it’s an inside job that has its own language.

The language of love is the most powerful language on the planet. In the English language, some of our deepest feelings can’tbe expressed in words. We can look to the Greeks for wisdom.

Two friends touch each other’s souls but are not lovers.The Greeks refer to this love between friends as Philos.

The special love that we share for our family is differentthan any other love we experience. The Greeks refer to this love of family as Storge.

Spiritual love, or the love that is God is referred to as Agape.

The physical love, when lovers embrace, is referred to as Eros.

The language of love is an acknowledgment of a person’sessence and their inner beauty. If we are not comfortable withthe more accepted language of love, it is important to createour own language; a language that acknowledges others, theirgreatness, their gifts and their blessings. By becoming morecomfortable with this language, we open the doors to deeperintimacy.  We begin the process of fulfilling the deepest craving that James refers to. Perhaps you have your own language and way ofexpressing it.  Perhaps it’s with your eyes or your smile.  Let’s be open to finding new ways in which to do that.

ENJOY THE JOURNEY

MARK

Mark Susnow, is an executive & life coach and thought leader who inspires others to believe in themselves. He is passionate about life being an exciting journey of discovery. His enthusiastic and inspiring keynotes on change, leadership and connection thoroughly convey this message to his audiences. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of Dancing on the River…Navigating Life’s Changes and Discover the Leader Within.

What Lies Below the Surface?

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012

So you think it’s a little thing that needs to be fixed. What you see is actually minor, but it’s what’s beneath the surface that is causing the problem. What you thought might take a few minutes to repair might take a few days. In life when we don’t look deeper we overlook the real work that needs to be done.

Thankfully we noticed what we did and began to address the real issue. Now we can begin to repair and in some cases heal the underlying cause of the condition.

That’s why it’s prudent to have annual health checkups. Hopefully by being open to independent analysis we have a greater likelihood of discovering the root cause of any problem in its initial stages and take care of it before it becomes more significant.

I know that sometimes we don’t want to go there. We are afraid of what we might find out. I always feel relieved afterwards. Now I have a plan to get me going in the right direction. It’s also an affirmation that I’m on the right path.

Relationships are like that. When we sense that we are not connecting, it’s time to look at why. It’s also important to share your concern. In every relationship there is a conversation that can begin the healing process. But we have to take responsibility for having that conversation.

JOURNEY ON

MARK

Mark Susnow, is an executive & life coach and thought leader who inspires others to believe in themselves. He is passionate about life being an exciting journey of discovery. His enthusiastic and inspiring keynotes on change, leadership and connection thoroughly convey this message to his audiences. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of Dancing on the River…Navigating Life’s Changes. Give yourself the gift of coaching and make an investment in your future.

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

The year is coming to a close. With most of my life coaching clients we are reflecting upon the year in the following way:

Think about your year. How do you want to acknowledge yourself. In what ways did you rise to the occasion. What if you said to yourself, “Mark (your name) I’m really proud of you. You handled that really well. You accomplished that well. You have a lot to build on in this next year going forward.”

Now your job is to fill in the blanks. I think the number one challenge that most of us face is how we handle adversity in our lives. And that adversity quite often is the meaning we give to an event in our life. How about you?

And of course some of us faced significant challenges that have had a direct impact on the quality of our lives. How were you challenged this year? How has that challenge made you a better person? What have you learned about yourself?

JOURNEY ON

MARK

Mark Susnow, is an executive and life coach, who inspires others to believe in themselves. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of, Dancing on the River:Navigating Life’s Changes.

This Amazing Adventure called “You”

Friday, November 5th, 2010

Wherever you are in life’s evolutionary cycle, you’ll eventually come to the same realization. The outward journey of seeking success and what you might call “happiness” is only temporarily fulfilling. Finding joy and meaning is an inner journey.

On this journey, you’ll discover a new state of being. You’ll know what it means to be Dancing on the River, which is a reflection of a life decision that you make to be happy and to enjoy life in this moment. You’ll discover that your enjoyment and appreciation of life is not dependent on what might happen in the future. It might take a while to come to this realization, but once you do, you’ll have the potential to awaken to a rich inner life that is more fulfilling than you can imagine. I say potential because it doesn’t happen overnight.

It is my hope that by integrating the following six insights and practices into your life this new consciousness will become your natural way of being.

1.How you start your day sets the tone for the day. If you start the day in a hurry it will be extremely difficult to slow down. Most of us rush out of the house in the morning trying to make an appointment or deadline. Underneath the concern that we won’t be able to get it all done is an underlying anxiety that won’t go away. You sometimes wish you had a magic wand that could make things better. Although there is no magic wand, there is a morning practice that can minimize much of that anxiety. After you wake up and before you do anything else, take 10-15 minutes for reflection. Perhaps you already have a meditation practice. If you don’t, just sit still in a quiet place and pay attention to your breath. I have also found that journaling is a great way to center yourself before you rush out into the day.

After meditation begin to focus on what you are grateful for. Perhaps there are only a few things that you can think of in the beginning, but once you make this a daily practice, you realize how blessed you are. By focusing on what you are grateful for, your focus shifts to what’s right in your life, rather than on what’s wrong. It’s an amazing practice, which has the power to transform your life.

2. Develop the practice of Curiosity. I didn’t realize how powerful of a concept this could be until I integrated it into my life. In fact if I write another book it will probably will be about the power of curiosity. Here’s what I suggest to get you going. In the morning, after expressing gratitude, reflect upon your day wondering about what the highlight of your day might be. By being curious as to what that is, you’ll create a positive expectation as the day progresses. No matter what is happening in your life, rather than worrying about the outcome, be curious as to how it is all going to unfold. By being curious, you’re also open to those pleasant surprises—those moments of grace that uplift your spirit. Remember that this is a practice and like most things, the more you practice the better you get at it.

3. Learn how to recognize and know your VOJ. The VOJ is that voice of judgment that drives you nuts. You know it. We all do. You would give anything to silence it even if just for a few minutes. The sooner that you can recognize your VOJ, which in coaching we call your gremlin, the sooner you can become free of its hypnotic spell that can last a lifetime if you don’t do anything about it. But the doing is a different type of doing. It’s just noticing. I have found that giving this voice a name has been effective in breaking the spell that it has over me. I call my VOJ, Ralph. This is a lifelong challenge so don’t be discouraged if you don’t notice anything immediately. The journey is never-ending.

4. Self-Acceptance is the next practice. Let’s be honest with ourselves. There are certain things we can’t change. We can’t change who are parents are. We can’t change our country of origin. We can’t change all of the injustices in the world, although we might try. But we do have the potential to change how we think about ourselves and how we think about the circumstances of our lives. Even though we are our own worst critics at times, our work is to accept those things that we don’t like about ourselves—that dark side often referred to as our “shadow.” You know what I’m talking about so I won’t go into detail. Once you accept those things about yourself that you don’t like or are embarrassed by, you feel lighter and freer. And isn’t that what it’s all about–becoming lighter.

5. Introduce positive self-talk into the conversation. Now that you are more familiar with those voices and patterns that have been running your life, it’s time to listen to a new voice that needs to be nurtured and cultivated. It’s a voice if honored and cultivated can change how you think about yourself. I call this voice your VIP. It’s the voice of Inspiration and Praise that we don’t listen to, or hear enough. That voice has become my inner champion. When I think that I shouldn’t have felt the way I did about something that happened, or that I shouldn’t have acted in a certain way, my VIP sends me a few words of encouragement by saying to me, “You’re doing great. You handled that well.” It takes conscious effort and resolve to cultivate your VIP. As you learn to trust and listen to it, how you feel about your life will begin to shift.

6. Make time for the jollies. So here we are again with another new phrase. No I haven’t lost my mind. All of us have faced challenges that at times seem overwhelming. Even in the midst of these challenges, there are many things that can give us joy. They might be little things that we have forgotten about. Don’t overlook them.

The Jollies is taking the time to do what gives you joy. So when I say make time for the jollies–I mean make time for what gives you joy, even if you still have loose ends in your life and your “to do” list is full. It took me a while to come the realization that there will always be “loose ends” and uncertainty. If you always wait for the perfect time to begin something new, you will never begin. The only perfect time is now.

So there you have it. As my good friend Lois said to me, “The journey might be challenging, but the scenery can be spectacular.” There’s only one thing left to do. Enjoy the journey.

JOURNEY ON

MARK

Mark Susnow, is an executive and life coach, who inspires others to believe in themselves. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of, Dancing on the River:Navigating Life’s Changes.

YES YOU CAN

Friday, June 25th, 2010

In a life coaching session yesterday, my client, let’s call him Carl, asked me, “You mean I can be happy even though I have these money problems?” Another client, asked me the following: “You mean I can be happy even though I have these relationship problems?”

My response to Carl was the following. You can be happy and still have money problems. And I told the other client that he could be happy and still have his relationship problems.

Problems come and go. If we make our happiness or fulfillment dependent on the cycles of our lives, our emotions will go up and down like a yo-yo.

Rather than making our feelings of satisfaction and fulfillment contingent on getting rid of circumstances that bother us, make a decision to be happy in the moment. Yes you have to make this decision over and over again. It will take a conscious effort.

Dancing on the River, is a consciousness that is a reflection of a life decision to be happy in the moment that you make over and over again. Yes—you can be happy and your relationship has things that need to be worked out. Yes you can be happy and still have money concerns.

It’s not about being perfect but being human. We’re emotional beings. We’re irrational at times. We do the best we can under the circumstances.

There’s nothing you need to do. Most of us want to be happy. There’s nothing out there that will make you feel that way. It’s easier than you think. Try it. It starts with being grateful for your life.

JOURNEY ON

MARK

Mark Susnow, is an executive and life coach, who inspires others to believe in themselves. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of, Dancing on the River…Navigating Life’s Changes.

SECRETS TO GREATER INTIMACY

Tuesday, June 8th, 2010

Although relationships are often unpredictable and confusing, we still try to make sense of them. So that’s what i’m doing here— sharing my perspective–so that the next time you reach that point of utter confusion you’ll have something to go on. In my book Dancing on the River there is a whole chapter on Love and Relationships.

But first a little history. There was that time when my focus was on finding the one. You know, Mr Right or Mrs Right. And then I met the one who I thought was the one, who was ready and willing and I started to freak out. I had been single for so long and so used to searching that I didn’t know what to do. Well I got over it and over 20 years has gone by.

Let me share with you 11 guiding principles to deeper intimacy:

1.Be respectful of your partner. You better think of your partner as someone who is pretty special and like who they are as a person.

2. Recognize each other’s strengths. Each of you has certain strengths and gifts. Utilize them to the benefit of the relationship.

3. Have you really made a full commitment? So many couples use every fight as a weapon to challenge the strength of the relationship. If you are really committed you cannot keep challenging the relationship.

4. Commitment to personal growth. Don’t think because you are in that “relationship” that you can stop working on yourself. For a while that was my thinking. When you stop growing you get boring and so does your partner and everything you are involved in. Growth is a lifelong process whether you are alone or with a partner.

5. You need to be flexible. Life evolves and things changes. As you change so does your partner and everything around you.

6. Develop a personal support system, independent of the relationship. Life is not a bowl of cherries, sometime you get a bad pit or a sour taste. In a long term relationship you will experience several challenges. It can be a financial setback, an illness, a loss of a loved one or a personal tragedy.

7. Have or develop a sense of humor, but not necessarily at the expense of your partner.

8. See relationships as a sacred path. In the process you’ll discover more about yourself than anything else you can do.

9. Learn how to deeply listen to each other, which means caring about what your partner longs for.

10. Create a safe vehicle or environment so that you can have authentic and honest discussions around potentially challenging subjects. Have you had a honest discussion regarding your finances? Do you have a financial plan that can work for both of you? Are you mutually responsible for the implementation of this plan?

11. Choose a partner who is capable of mutuality. Perhaps most important is whether your partner can make the commitment. Are they emotionally available?

What about you? Where do you shut down? Are there things in your life, that you refuse to look at? They’re usually are. And that’s our work.

So there it is.

JOURNEY ON

MARK

Mark Susnow, is an executive and life coach, who inspires others to believe in themselves. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of, Dancing on the River…Navigating Life’s Changes.

BE OPEN TO WHAT’S NEXT

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010

I just got off the phone with let’s call him, Carl, one of my life-coaching clients. At one time in his life, Carl, was excited about the path he was embarking upon. In his quest to become more fulfilled, Carl, read many books on personal development, took work-shops on becoming more fulfilled and asked the big questions. He believed that the answer was within reach.

Then he became immersed in his career, got married and began a family. In the process he forgot who he was. At this time in his life, the quest for knowledge and the meaning of life is just a memory.

In our life coaching sessions, I have been trying to get Carl to get in touch with who he was as a young man, since he was excited then. Carl knows what he has to do, but he is so engrained with his life and the habits that go along with making his career work, he can’t break away from work and make the investment of time and energy necessary to explore that world world that is waiting for him to show up.

Carl has very few interests other than his career. He knows it and wants to regain that passion he once had. But there was nothing that seemed to excite him.

As a start I suggested that he read through the local adult education programs at the local schools. I told him that right now what was most important was making the commitment. It’s like reading a book. You can’t get into the emotion of it until you’re read a few chapters.

His homework is to commit to taking one course during the next session. He’s agreed to it. It doesn’t matter if you’re not excited initially. That will come. What’s important is to get the energy moving. As part of your research and development to know yourself better, take the next step. Perhaps it’s not taking a course. It could be calling someone you have been thinking about but haven’t yet reached out to.

JOURNEY ON

MARK

Mark Susnow, is an executive and life coach, who inspires others to believe in themselves. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of, Dancing on the River…Navigating Life’s Changes.


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