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Saturday, August 25, 2007

Declutter Your Home & Your Mind

It's Saturday afternoon and I am EXHAUSTED! Typically when I am feeling so drained it is either because I have stayed up all night with one of my kid's ailments or I couldn't sleep because I needed to get a great idea I didn't want to lose down on paper. But today, neither is the case. The source of my unrest comes from clutter. Clutter translates into chaos and I simply can not function in chaos. It completely wipes me out.

I am looking at a stack of mail that I either opened and tossed on my desk to look over later or that is unopened junk that I neglected to file in the circular bin. This is an old bad habit that I have been struggling with. All things should have their proper place and be put in them as soon as possible. Junk mail should be immediately trashed and whatever I wish to save should either go in my reading bin or be filed away in its designated location for future use. Furthermore, I did my laundry twice this past week but did not complete the task of folding and putting away my clothing. My home is in disarray. My home is in a state of incompletion.

Incompletion leads to unrest. It is dissettling to allow clutter to build up. It literally sucks the energy out of you and halts progress. A clean home is more inviting. The more comfortable you are in your own hoome, the more at ease you are to get the proper rest.

So what do I do now? I have recognized the source of my fatigue which is the most important part but also the easiest. To tackle the situation, first I will allow myself to take a short nap, no longer than an hour. Studies have shown that a midday rest, or siesta as some of my South American friends refer to it as, can drastically boost the energy levels and increase overall mental and physical health if practiced routinely. When I awake, I will perform a simple meditation along with a few stretching exercises to help bring my mind and body back in balance. Finally, I will tackle this mess. I will start in one room and gradually work my way through my home until it is 100% clean. Once I have completed this task I will have achieved balance in my home. This will remove the stress that feeling so tired has put on my mind and body as well as allow me to be more productive going forward.

If you are feeling exhausted or a bit off your center, perhaps this feeling has its roots in the midst of chaos. Declutter your home and mind by following these simple guidelines:

  1. Rec0gnize that you are feeling this way. If you do not take the responsibility for your well-being, who will? Don't just overlook these feelings. Neglecting your emotions and physical reactions is not the answer. You will only become more drained by the energy it takes to fight it.
  2. Forgive yourself and tackle the feeling. If you are tired, rest. If you are depressed, talk to someobody or pray. Pay attention to your mind and body and give them what they need to be refocused.
  3. Remove the source of chaos. Most negative feelings are directly caused by some sort of incompletion. Find what is not complete (clutter, a conversation that ended in anger, etc.) and complete it. You may need to do this in several steps or repeat the process several times before completion is attained but you must restore it.
  4. Set up a routine and make a conscious effort to keep balance in your life. You must continue working at this on a daily basis until it becomes habit.

So whether you are fatigued, depressed or just having an off day, remember to take the time to examine yourself and give your body what it needs to feel back in balance. As an additional tip, if the source is clutter, I advise you to always start in your bedroom first. This is your castle and should be kept up as such. How can you enjoy your rest when your bed is covered in laundry?

Well I'm off to fold some towels so I can take a nice long siesta.

Happy Living!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Appreciation & Acceptance

Do you know the power of giving thanks? There is something magnificent in the ability to accept your present circumstances and appreciate the blessings you do have. Regardless of your financial position, your employment status or the condition of your relationships; giving thanks for all that is good and right in your life can be an invitation for greater things to come. If you can not appreciate the blessings you have already received, you can not be open to receive more.

This is why the "Serenity Prayer" is such a powerful tool in recovery programs. Change is difficult and bad habits are especially hard to overcome. Asking God to grant the serenity to accept the things you cannot change; courage to change the things you can; and wisdom to know the difference can put you in a position to recognize opportunity. Being grateful generates hope. Hope is synomynous with expectation and therefore hope feeds desire. Desire motivates action. These are the basic principles behind the laws of attraction. When your thoughts are proactively positive, you can dream bigger. Your fears dissipate as your faith and confidence grows. You are no longer immobilized by the possibility of failure but are instead inspired to take hold of your future.

I like to start my day off by giving thanks for all things big and small. When I awake, I make a point to be thankful for every thing my eyes rest upon for at least five minutes before I get out of bed. It doesn't matter what the things are. So, if I open my eyes to see a fly, I say "thank you for the flies" or if I see my alarm clock, I say "thank you for clocks". This may seem a little silly but it accomplishes several things. First, everything on this earth is connected. If one piece of the puzzle is missing, the entire ecosystem (life as we know it) can go awry. For example, there has been a great deal of discussion behind the sudden demise of honeybees. It is speculated that cell phone usage and satellite transmissions could be interfering with their flight patterns thereby altering their life cycles. If there are no honey bees, what will be the impact on the world? How will the flowers get pollinated? What animals will be affected by no longer having a food source in honey? So yes, thank you for the flies. Another reason I give thanks in this manner is to make sure that I get up on the "right" side of the bed. If I have to say thank you for my socks, this will put me in quite a jovial mood. A smile will instantly appear on my face and I may even break out in a fit of laughter. I will definitely be ready to take on my day on a positive note. Furthermore, if I didn't have socks, my feet would be awfully smelly by day's end.

The bottom line is to be grateful for all things. Try to start your day off by giving thanks. It does not have to be a religious experience either. Just learn to be appreciative of whatever your circumstances are and you will find that you will live a happier, more fulfilling life.

Happy Living!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Pay It Forward

Last night I watched the new television show "i-Caught" that is airing on ABC. At the end of the show, a campaign was highlighted in which individuals wrote a single life-changing word or phrase on the palm of their hands and filmed it in silence. Some of the words were "peace", "love", "stop war", "give hugs" and "altruism".

After viewing the show, I began to think of some really great simple and inexpensive ways to pay it forward. So I am inviting all of my friends and colleagues to participate in a nationwide "Love Call". At 8 PM (any time zone), call a random stranger. It could be from a business card you happened to pick up or a name you pulled out of the phonebook. Call that person and simply say "Just wanted to let you know someone loves you" or any variation of that phrase and then hang up. If you their voicemail, definitely leave a message. Feel free to call anonymously using the *67 feature on your phone. Come back here to post your feelings and responses after you do it.

Let's see how we can change the world with a simple gesture of love!

What is a Life Coach?

As a home-based business owner and avid network marketer, I am always finding myself at various meet-and-greets throughout Chicagoland. Like a good little schoolgirl, my 30-second elevator speech is well-prepared to roll off my tongue at every introduction. My new acquaintances have a knack for exchanging quizzical looks at the end of my spiel before asking, "yeah, um, so what is a life coach?" Exasperated that my prepared speech is never enough, I began researching the definition of life coach in order to develop a more refined explanation to have at the ready. The following is what I have come up with.

A life coach is a person who partners with you to ensure your success. They act as your personal cheerleader in helping you to set goals and create a plan to achieve them. A life coach aids you in identifying your strengths and opportunities for greater personal and professional development. A life coach also works with you in developing a system of accountability to realize your intended objectives. Unlike a therapist or counselor, a life coach is very forward-thinking. Life coaches bridge the gap between where you are right now and where you want to be in the future. Life coaches have a mission to help ordinary people fulfill extraordinary dreams.

Life coaches come from a variety of backgrounds. Some have backgrounds in psychology or social work. Some are former business professionals. Many life coaches have no formal education or professional experience at all. People become life coaches because they have a very real desire to motivate others to be successful and have a natural gift for doing so. Good coaches use a combination of education and life experience to meet the needs of their clients. Coaches can choose to specialize in business, careers, parenting, dating, relationships, disabilities or general life. Most life coaches have been coaching unofficially for the greater part of their lives and just didn't know it.

The life coaching industry is still relatively new, having only been officially recognized for approximately the past thirty years. Because of this, coaching is still very much an unregulated practice. There are two major certifying boards attempting to change this: the International Association of Coaches (IAC) and the International Coach Federation (ICF). Both organizations have been around for about 15 years and each have rigorous qualification standards and testing that must be achieved prior to certification. There are many coach training schools available that offer training programs geared toward meeting the requirements of these certifying bodies. It is still a widely debated issue as to whether or not professional life coaches should be certified or not. As it currently stands, certification can definitely help to legitimize an aspiring coach but formal education and life experience can still be just as valuable depending on the target customer.

As for the coaching process itself, most coaching is conducted primarily by telephone or even email. Sessions typically last from 30 minutes to an hour. Life coaches practice effective listening skills to mirror client concerns and act as a sounding board for ideas. Life coaches use intuitive questioning skills to lead their clients onto a journey of self-discovery and growth. Most coaching relationships average about 6 months. Fees for coaching can vary greatly from coach to coach and are based heavily on the type of client being served. Most coaches, including myself, do offer a complimentary session to all first time clients.

Life coaching can be a very fulfilling career for the right personalities. If you are already a person who loves to reach out to others, is a great listener and you often find yourself in the center of everyone's problems, then you probably have what it takes to be a coach. And if you are a big dreamer but don't know quite how to turn them into reality, then a life coach is most likely the perfect answer for you.

Official Launch & First Post

Welcome to Chicago Life Coach!

My name is Niquenya D. Fulbright. I am a Chicago area executive life coach, professional speaker and corporate trainer specializing in motivating small business owners, entrepreneurs, executives and individuals in a career or life transition to use their innate abilities to master their goals and achieve successes beyond their wildest dreams. I use the principles of the laws of attraction, the teachings of the Bible and the theories behind client-centered therapy to guide me as I partner with my clients to build a bridge between their dreams and ultimate reality.

A little more about me:

  • Currently pursuing M.A. in Clinical Psychology
  • B.S. in Technical Management with concentration in Small Business & Entrepreneurship
  • Professional Diploma in Network Administration

Industry Experience

  • Over 10 years in office administration, customer service and sales
  • 8 years in information technology, consulting and management
  • 5 years in retail, accounting and human resources
  • 1-5 years in alternative dispute resolution, corporate training, marketing, product development, project management, airline and other hospitality industries

Presentation Experience

Articles & Other Publications

  • "Purposeful Meditation"
  • "Are You Living Within Your Own Purpose or Under Your Parents' Passion?"
  • "Battling the Bet-Nots: Overcoming the Noise of Negative Naysayers"
  • "Choosing a Career"
  • "Turn the Table on Your Interviewer"
  • "LEAD Your Customers Away From Returns & Exchanges"
  • "Keys to Effective Leadership"
  • "Simple Savings Suggestions for the Beginning Investor"
  • "The Truth About the Forty-Dollar Government Grant Game"
  • "10 Crucial Steps to Create an Online Presence"
  • "The Positive Power of Saying NO"
  • "Top 10 First Date Blunders"
  • "The Nuts & Bolts of Networking"
  • "Where Did My Money Go?"

Family & Home Life

  • 2 children, Kimaya (age 14) and Kahari (age 5)
  • Favorite food is chocolate
  • Favorite color is purple
  • Hobbies include reading, writing (poetry), singing, foreign language, ethnic cooking and travel

Now that you know a little about me and my background, I hope to provide you with enriching tips, tools, techniques and advice on how to succeed in business, love and life. Feel free to subscribe and leave any comments or questions you might have for me. Also, make sure you visit my coaching site at Besides coaching, I also offer mediation and other management consulting services. A complimentary coaching session is available to all first time clients. Coaching is performed primarily via telephone.

I look forward to connecting with you in the days to come.

Happy Living!