Thursday, 13 February 2014

Happy Valentines Day!

Valentines Day!

Well it may be pretty cold outside but it can be warm inside. With just the two of you.

Three ways to enjoy some intimacy. Everything is so fast paced and life so pressured that one of the nicest and most pleasurable things you can do is close the door and shut the world out!

1. So let's set a love scene. Let the music play, turn the lights down low. Make sure you have the Rose Champagne nicely chilled. All you need to do now is simply date. Ensure the phone is off because you both are giving each other your undivided attention. 

2. Slow dance.  Let the man take the lead. Ladies, just follow. All you need to do is play up your femininity to the maximum. Wear a dress. Leave your favourite jeans for now. It's all about playing up your differences.

3. Use your creativity. Write your sweetheart a love letter. Say everything you find it hard to say out loud. Think about it and write it down in detail. A woman will cherish this forever and you will have her heart. If you are gifted musically sing her/his favourite song. That's irresistible. Another thought is to create a mixtape of beautiful love songs that say it beautifully. 

Happy Valentines Day!

If you are single, may I recommend the 28 Day Real Love Challenge ~ 

Patricia Benjamin
Life Coach
Love & Relationship Coach
Radio Talk Show Host
Facebook: Ask Patricia
Twitter: @Ask_Patricia
iTunes: Real Love Show

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Week 2 - The 28 Day Real Love Challenge

Hi guys

As this is my most popular post by a runaway mile, I take it you're all loving the Challenge and maybe told a friend or two. 

So let's get into week 2.

Day 8 - Ask yourself, what are the voices in your head telling you? What are the voices from your past telling you? What is the voice of your heart telling you. Okay, I want you to take authority over any inner voice that is not supporting you. I want you to substitute that voice with a new voice. That old voice may have been telling you negative things. It may have been telling you that you'll always be alone. It may have been telling you that you're not attractive enough. It may have been telling you that you don't have what it takes to find love. It may have been telling you that you'll just end up being hurt and let down again. Time to shut that down. That voice hasn't been helping you. This is your life and you get to write the script. You can choose, you decide.  Begin to say "I deserve love". "I'm very loveable". "Real love is my portion in life and I expect it" "At the rightime for me, I will find love or it will find me". "All I've been through and the lessons I've learnt has prepared me for the relationship that is right for me". Make up some more of your own. Let these words become the words of your new and dominant inner voice. Key: Hear yourself say these words. Say them out loud. Today and every day this week. We get in life what we think, believe, say and expect. 

Day 9. Do you remember when you were last in love? When you felt good in your skin. Remember how desirable you felt . Remember that amazing feeling of knowing someone was thinking about you and would go out of their way to please you. If you have never been in love then just imagine how that would feel. Well, take those feelings and embrace them. Close your eyes and feel those feelings from the crown of your head, spreading through your body to the tips of your fingers right down to the soles of your feet.  Begin walking with a spring in your step. Start dressing with that extra flare. Start combing your hair with that little extra attention. Spray on a new cologne, something light, maybe floral, something classy, like you. When you smile feel that new charisma that is beginning to flow from you. Know that your eyes sparkle with that certain something. Feel comfortable in this place of confidence and happiness. Now go out and face your day and walk as though you're hearing your favourite song.

Day 10. How are you feeling today? Is your energy up? Are you full of beans? If yes, fabulous.  You're about to feel even better soon. If not, take a look at what you're consuming. Is there anything you need to adjust nutrition wise? Try and up your intake of fresh fruits and vegetables that help detox your body. Are you taking regular physical exercise? Even if you don't need to lose weight, getting your heart rate up is good for getting those endorphins racing through your body and feeling good. It's been proven to counter depression. So get the exercise going, it could be  a daily walk, a Zumba class, a free weights session whatever you prefer.  If you can make it something upbeat and fun, all the better.  Someone who loves themselves enough to take care of themselves is always very appealing. 

Day 11. Time to get your flirt on. Flirting is simply communicating in a way that let's someone know you're interested in the possibility of dating.  Keep your approach casual and relaxed. Use their name, it's very charming to have someone address you and call your name. It sounds very simple but there's a big difference in simply saying "good morning" to saying "good morning John/Marie". A nice compliment given with eye contact and a soft smile is good.  Ladies, give a guy permission to talk to you. Let him see you're approachable and use open body language. Ladies, you hold the power, you are the ones that give the green light. It's not all on the man. Even if he thinks he made the first move you are the one who makes it clear you are open to an approach.  Remember, vive la difference! Ladies play up your femininity. Give the jeans or trousers a break. Wear a dress and wear it with confidence and flare. Also, ladies, leave Ms Independent at home. Independent means "alone" and you're done with that.  Guys, good humour, a smile, a nice compliment, not appearing too eager, and being the gentleman is always a winner. So, there's one or two tips for you to bear in mind as you get your flirting skills going. Bear in mind that the  more you practice flirting the more comfortable and confident you will be. 

Day 12. Another Feel the Fear and do it anyway day! Go on a blind date. Just for fun. Get a friend you know and trust to arrange a foursome. And go and have fun. It should be something you can enjoy, maybe visit a gallery and then a light lunch; visit a tourist attraction then go for a drink; go to a comedy club and just have fun. Be yourself. Your best self. Just have a great day/evening. Don't worry about chemistry or love at first sight for now. And did you know some of the best relationships are those that started out as friends with lots in common?

Day 13. Today is Take a Risk day! You're going to turn the tables. Especially if you're female. Call up your blind date. Tell them you had a fun time and you'll love to go for coffee one morning. This is presuming you did have a nice time. However, if you do not plan to see your blind date again still call them and thank them for a pleasant evening.  Show courtesy and respect because that's the kind of person you are. 

Day 14. Get some colour in your life. Especially if you wear a lot of black. Black is cool and everything, but get some colour, for a change. Take a chance. Get out your comfort zone and do things a little differently. Why not book a personal shopper or a personal stylist or a friend whose dress style you've always admired but didn't have the confidence to emulate and shake things up a little. Start living your life in colour. Come out of the Grey zone and come Alive with colour. 

By now, you will be flowing with confidence, self-belief and a greater sense of self-acceptance and self-love. A greater sense of control in your life.  This is coming together to cause you to be a very compelling and charismatic person. There are two types of people in life, those who think that life happens to them  and then those who believe life is what you make it.  Which one of these do you fit into? 

Next week, we will begin clearing out a few things you may not be aware of that could be in your way. But in the meantime fully embrace each day and the daily challenge. And if you're not finding it easy, remember its a Challenge. But I believe you're reading this because you were meant to and this will make a significant difference in your life. Drop me an email let me know how you're doing. 

Day 15 coming this time next week. 

Enjoy the RealLove Challenge

Patricia Benjamin
Life Coach
Love & Relationship Coach
Radio Talk Show Host
Facebook: Ask Patricia
Twitter: @Ask_Patricia
iTunes: Real Love Show

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Family Secrets and Lies: What's your story?

Wow, this week's Real Love Show was deep. Amazingly, we were discussing a novel. But it was still deep. The title was "Address: House of Corrections" and I was privileged to have the author herself, Monice Mitchell Simms, with me on the show.

The book is part fiction and part real life, inspired by the author's grandmother. 

It's the kind of book that marinades and gets better the more you consider it's content. 

The heroine of the book, a young black girl named Merry, starts out life full of spunk, vitality and quick spiritedness. But life throws so many things at her and she succumbs to the streets, to drugs, alcohol and has 2 children all before the age of 16.

As Monice and I discussed the book, set during the time of the Jim Crow Laws, we began discussing the whys. I must say, for me, that the book threw a light on the person behind the drug addict. The person behind the alcoholic. The person behind the promiscuity. It made me ask, what is that person's story?

Merry's story was that she had been brutally raped at age 13 as she tried to protect her younger brother from the sexual proclivities of an older man. An older white man. A deacon in the church. The head deacon in fact. On running home and sharing her awful story to her grandmother she isn't believed. In fact she is sent away. 

I'm feeling upset and angry. I'm upset and angry for Merry  and girls like Merry.  Although we are not sure if this happened to the individual upon whom the story is based, it is clear this type of scenario was played out many times during that era. And what was the point of reporting this heinous crime?  A black family had no power to bring a case to court against a white man, a church man.  So, the best thing was to send her away and hope she would just get on with it. 

And get on with it she did. With the alcohol. With the drugs. With bringing into the world 2 children all before she was 16. 

It's not enough to be angry with Merry. Or indeed girls like Merry. It's necessary to ask why?

Merry had no father in her life. She had no one to protect her. No one to show her the love she needed and wanted and deserved. 

I wonder how many girls have the same daddy wound and are seeking some way to assuage the unpleasantness of that wound with sex. 

I wonder how many girls have been molested and seek to dull the pain and the memory with alcohol.

I wonder how many girls have not been believed when they told others what had happened and felt no one was listening. No one cared to hear. No one thought they mattered. I wonder how many girls seek to blot out that emptiness with drugs. 

What can be done? Part of my job as a life coach, as a relationship coach, involves listening. Sometimes just listening alone to my clients as they tell me their situation and offering nothing more than an ear and an attitude that is non-judgemental is enough for my client. That alone validates them. That alone honours them. That alone affirms them. 

Listening is a powerful thing. Sometimes we don't have all the answers. Sometimes we don't have the magic solution that will change their lives straightaway. But what we can do is listen. Let them share. Give them a safe place where their tears can flow. 

The tears are often healing tears. Their stories are their truth, and speaking their truth sets them free from the pain of secrecy, shame and emotional bondage that had kept them down. 

I remember a client I worked with several years ago who cried constantly during our sessions. It transpired she had been molested by her grandfather as a child. She had told no-one. No one at all. It was ruining her life, her marriage, and her career, now as a 35 year business woman. But speaking out and being listened to was her first step to healing and change. 

Compassion is a powerful thing. Knowing why someone acts the way they do gives us a chance to show understanding.  But what about if we don't know the why?

I'm going to encourage us to look around and consciously decide to be kind and compassionate to others even though we may not know  their story. Be assured, everyone has a story. Maybe even a secret or two.  It maybe someone not a million miles away. Maybe someone in your family. 

If you are the one with the secret, don't let it hold you captive any longer. You don't need to have the nightmares. 
You can tell someone. You can tell someone like me. 

Patricia Benjamin
Life Coach
Love & Relationship Coach
Radio Talk Show Host
Facebook: Ask Patricia
Twitter: @Ask_Patricia
LinkedIn: Patricia Benjamin 
iTunes: Real Love Show
Mixcloud: Ask Patricia 

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Take Control of your Life - here's how.

You can be more successful in life but only if you take action!
This month's blog is comparatively shorter than January's but still has heavy content. My aim is to help you get things done and to make your life clutter-free. Once your life is cleared of all the clutter, it becomes easier to control.
The more the control, the more motivated you feel.
De-clutter your life and improve your motivation!
Many people carry around with them a lot of excess ‘luggage’ or ‘clutter’.
The emotional tensions and regrets make up a major part of this clutter. The ‘if only’s and ‘why this happened’s along with ‘could have’s  could be plenty.  
Do away with this excess baggage!
Consider this incident in Janice and Paul’s life.
Jan and Paul were soul mates. One day, they had an argument over something and they stopped speaking to each other. Not only that, they started living separately. Within a month, both missed the companionship of the other, and regretted the break up. However, both waited for the other to make the first move to start over again. It never happened. They drifted apart, but the feeling of regret stayed with them. Each confessed to mutual friends that it has affected their lives.

I hate hearing things like that. It's so unnecessary and speaks of an unwillingness to admit you may have been wrong.  Even if you are, it's not the end of the world. And isn't a loving happy relationship worth overcoming your pride for?

I see people old and lonely because they always have to be right. Well, newsflash!!! No one is right all the time. What's the harm in a simple apology? Or giving a peace offering? Or just making the first move? Someone has to step up!
What was the purpose? Either you make a move to do something about the incomplete situations you face in life or find a closure. Nursing and feeding your regrets and making a mental list of ‘should have’s gets you down and more down. And finding someone else to blame does nothing to help you. It just keeps you stuck where you are. By yourself.
You ought to struggle free, but you don’t.
Now, why not take a good look at yourself.
Are you like this?
Do you have a mental list of ‘if only’s and ‘should have’s cropping up every now and then?
Be honest with yourself. Because if you are like this, your confidence and motivation have probably been suffering.
The approach.
So now, what do you have to do?
Get rid of this useless burden, that’s what!
Begin with answering a series of questions and completing the following exercise:
What we are going to do is ‘complete’ certain tasks, draw a line under them and move on.
This is also known as ‘psychological completion’ or merely ‘completion’.
So coming up next is a series of questions that you could take to answering in one sitting or over a couple of hours or days. You can make the process formal by jotting down the answers rather than making a mental note of them.
Go ahead. Watch your confidence and motivation soar!
1. Putting up with….
• List out 10 things that you are putting up with at home
• List out 10 things that you are putting up with at work
• List out 10 things that you are putting up with, in your love life
• List out 10 things that you are putting up with, in any other area of your life, friendships etc

• Create an action plan to weed out/ communicate these things that you have been putting up with
2. Unfinished matters…
• List out all the things in your life that you feel are unresolved/unfinished
• Create an action plan meant to reduce this number
• Do you need to clear the air with anyone? If so, just do it! Life is too short!
• Is there someone you are supposed to call or keep in touch with but failed to find time for? If yes, do it. Call them or send an email to them right away!
• Let go of as many ‘coulds, woulds, shoulds, maybes and oughts’ from your life as you can.
3. Your standards…..
• Write down the standards that you have always told yourself to try matching. Now let go of them and create a new list. These should be the standards that you are going to have in your life from this day onwards.

• List out the names of 5 people that you admire the most and identify their qualities, their behavior and their way of life.  What is it you admire about them? What standards do they have? What are the standards that you could set for yourself, in order to be more like them?  

• Remember, the standards set by others for themselves will be different from yours. Think of any 5 friends or colleagues. What standards have they set for themselves? How are they different from yours?
Did you know that you had such a long list subconsciously and without your being aware of it eating away your inner strengths?
How difficult it would be to move forward when you had so many thoughts holding you back?
These exercises will help you focus on the here, the now and the future of your life.
You will now be able to break free from the clutch of those things that have been unnecessarily holding your attention. Leave behind all those things that knock your motivation. Just let go of them! It's 2014 - if you want a different result you have to do things differently to the way you did them before. 
Now there is a lot for you to do this time, isn’t there!
Lose no time….
Better make a start!

See you back here next month for more life coaching!

Patricia Benjamin
Life Coach
Love & Relationship Coach
Radio Talk-Show Host
Facebook - Ask Patricia
Twitter - @Ask_Patricia
iTunes - Real Love Show

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