Life and Spiritual Coaching

October 27, 2008

Plan, Do, Check, Act

Filed under: Life Balance,Life Coaching — by Donna Ritter @ 11:06 am
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1 Planning is an exercise we all use daily, but seldom do we use it on our own growth. In order for you to get where you want to be in the next 5 years, a plan is essential. This post will take you through the planning cycle using Deming’s famous Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle.

1.1 Plan:

Planning includes defining what you want to achieve. I use a mission statement, roles (like mother, wife, friend, and worker), and goals (like become an expert Digital photographer, have a solid financial plan for retirement…) and break those down into short term and long term goals.

You can use any number of these and other tools to plan your ideal future. Remember; don’t let that demon that says “you can’t do that” get into your head. You can do anything you set your mind to!

Once you have a written account of where you want to go, it is time to determine how you should go about achieving it. Use time management techniques, prioritization, visioning and other tools to help you complete your plan. I will talk more about these techniques in later posts.

1.2 Do:

Practice your plan for a month or so and see how it goes. Keep a journal and write down what is working and what is not. Even though I am talking about long term plans here, that doesn’t mean they won’t change all along the way.

1.3 Check:

Take some time to analyze your successes and failures. Remember – failures are not bad. They are simply learning mechanisms. If someone never failed, that would mean they never took risks. Risk taking is an important key to moving ahead in life; so no punishment or feeling bad if something doesn’t turn out like you thought it would. Just change the way you go about it!

1.4 Act:

This is the fun part. You have worked out the kinks and are ready to fully act on your mission. Your chances of success are greatly enhanced by a positive attitude. Keep a journal of successes, what you are grateful for and what things you may want to look at during your next Check cycle.

2 Prioritizing:

When you are in the Planning stages, prioritizing is a great tool to help you hone in on what is most important to you. First write down the actual priority of these roles in your life. What do you spend the most time on? Then write down your desired priority of these roles. There is probably something you should fix to get back in line with your authentic self.

3 Goal Setting:

Goals should be written as SMART goals. S = specific, M = measurable, A = attainable, R = realistic and T = timely. Specific means the goal states exactly what you are going to achieve, measurable means you can measure whether it was successful or not, attainable means you are giving yourself a goal that is within your grasp to achieve (no flying to the moon), realistic means it can be done within the limits you set and timely means it has an end time in which it should be completed.

Write the goal in positive language so it is something you would like to do, not something you’d like to put off.

Goals can be achieved over different timeframes; short term (within a month), medium term (within 6 months) or long term (within a year or several years).

4 Planning Your Goals:

Here are some steps you can use to plan your goals:

·         Visualize how your will feel, what you will see once you achieve your goal. Close your eyes and hold this vision in your mind. Write down your thoughts on a sheet of paper.

·         Write down the steps you think you need to take to achieve it.

·         Arrange the steps in time order

·         List all the resources you need to help you get your goal.

·         Identify any blocks or risks that could get in your way.

·         Establish plans for managing the risks.

·         Make a list of action steps and take your first action!


October 14, 2008

Live Your Authentic Life!

Filed under: Life Balance — by Donna Ritter @ 11:38 am
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You are the creator of your own vision. Writing a mission statement helps you to clearly define your mission, a powerful tool to create meaning and meaning and direction in your life. A personal mission statement answers these questions:

1.   What are you about? What does your ideal life look like?

2.   What are your primary values?

3.   What values do you need to develop and what tools will help you to do that?

4.   What is your daily practice to keep you in touch with your personal values?

5.   What/who are you grateful for? Plan to keep a gratitude journal.

6.   What inspires me to be the best person I can be?

7.   Examine your public, personal and deep inner life to define what values, contributions and roles are most important to you.

8.   Visualize your desired results. Identify the principals and values that will help you to realize your vision.

9.   When you day dream, what do you see yourself doing? What if you had unlimited resources?

After you have answered all of these questions to the best of your abilities, consider what you would like to leave as your legacy. How do you want to be remembered?

At the end of the exercise, revisit your gratitude journal. You will find that you have much more to be grateful for than you thought you did at first glance. Make a plan to enhance your best qualities and live your authentic life!



October 10, 2008

What are Your Values?

Filed under: Life Balance — by Donna Ritter @ 6:15 pm
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The names you attach to your values aren’t really important. One person may call her value “integrity” and one may call it “honesty”. What is important is that as you define your values, you take time to totally understand them, visualize them, and feel them. That will help you to get a clear picture of what that value means to you.


Here are the steps you can take to identify your values and what they mean to you:


1.   Draw a table with 3 columns. In the first column, write the answers to the following questions: what people, places and things are most important to me in my life? Write this in as much detail as possible.

2.   In the second column, write down the answer to the question: “what value does this person, place or thing give me?” Focus on the positive aspects of the value you receive from that goal.

3.   Look at the second column in detail. You should have a great many values and some of them may be the same. Like if you value your marriage and it gives you security and you value your job and it also gives you security, circle those that come up more than once.

4.   Write out the most frequent occurring values in the third column. Look at the remaining values and decide which are most important to you. Don’t try to prioritize them yet, but pick the top 10.

5.   Review your list for completeness. Make sure these values meet your intrinsic needs. Think of them as looking outward and forward.

6.   Also, look for any missing values that are vital to you. Next prioritize the values

7.   Take the first value and compare it to all of the others. Make sure you allow your conscious and unconscious mind to answer these questions truthfully for you as you are today.

8.   After you have them prioritized, define precisely what your values mean to you in the way you live your life. You can use mind mapping techniques here if you so choose. If you are a creative person, you may want to create a collage of pictures that define the values to you.

9.   Reflect on the final product and make sure it matches with your goals and mission statement. Then look at how you can bring your life goals into alignment with these values. You are on your way to motivating yourself to incorporate things that give you passion!

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