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Do You Need Permission to See Possibilities?

You Have It.

Message 4, January, 2021

Dear Guest,

For a while after I began to really see myself as a family caregiver, I lost my ability to see myself as a person, separate from all the things happening around me. This was after my dad died suddenly in 2014, so I’m sure some of this was related to my grief and getting used to my new responsibilities.* But as the months passed, I realized that while I was able to get excited when other people talked about opportunities, I couldn’t seem to see possibilities for myself.

Then in January of 2015, I had to deal with what I now call my “possibility blindness” head-on and in a big hurry when I went into business for myself full time. I knew if I wanted to succeed as an entrepreneur, I couldn’t rely on being on autopilot or things I knew from my past. I had to find a way to convince my brain to generate fresh ideas again. And of course, I still needed to pay attention to the other roles in my life - wife, mother, and caregiver - to the best of my ability. Some people said I was probably taking on too much, which I know is something a lot of caregivers can relate to.

Looking back, I can see I was also trying very hard to prove something to the people around me and to fill all of my roles perfectly. Nobody asked me to do this, but I found myself molding my thoughts and actions to fit what they expected of me (or what I thought they expected of me, anyway).

After a lot of soul-searching and digging through self-help books, I figured out that the root of my problem wasn’t just that I was acting like a people-pleaser (that’s not usually one of my issues, although it is something caregivers have a tendency to fall into). But on a really deep level, I just wasn’t open to seeing possibilities for myself.  I had closed my mind off from these possibilities so that I could throw myself into living according to rules I was handed and that everybody understood - but they were rules I hadn’t written, and I didn’t even agree with them, I just followed them anyway.

So here is the next simple, small step I promised to tell you about today: give yourself permission to see possibilities. That’s it, that’s all you need to do right now.

I know that sounds weird, doesn’t it? It’s exactly what I had to do to get through my “possibility blindness,” though. And I have seen the relief on my clients’ faces when I say to them, “What if you can just give yourself permission to do this?” I mean, it’s a physical release of tension for them - I watch the creases on their foreheads relax and it’s almost like a spark comes back to life in their eyes!

In the next message, I’m going to take the gloves off a little and start talking about the lies that are most likely to surface for you as you begin to take these tiny steps toward seeing possibilities. I want you to understand that even if you feel like something is going wrong, you are in fact just a normal human being! I stumbled through this work on my own without a guide, but luckily, you don’t have to do that. 

Until I see you here again for message five, try giving yourself permission to see possibilities.

Please let me know how this is working for you, or if you have any questions, by leaving a comment here.

Kay Coughlin

*I’m pretty sure that I was also suffering from mild depression and anxiety during this time. I talk more about this in my book Overcoming Your Emotional Grind, but if you have been diagnosed with a mental illness, please know you still have possibilities!


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Copyright 2020, Facilitator On Fire, Galena, OH, 43021, 614.426.8062

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