Last week, I heard myself saying, "I'm an emotional person. That's just who I am." I gave this justification during an intense, messy situation with a friend. I would have felt much happier if I could have responded in a detached, intellectual manner. The next day, I heard one of my clients saying, "I make things hard. I've always been that way." Imagine how much easier her life would be if she routinely told people, "Things are easy for me. It's always been like that."

I believe I'm an emotional person. My client believes she makes things difficult. As firmly committed as we both are to those concepts, they are just concepts. If we choose, we can change them this moment. How would my life improve if believed I am an emotional person who knows how to detach and come from an intellectual viewpoint in certain situations? How would my client's life improve if she believed she knows how to do things the easy way?

Why am I so attached to being an emotional person? Because I believe I wouldn't be me if I weren't emotional. What if I became a bigger me by being emotional AND being intellectual, whichever might serve me best? Why have I chosen to limit myself? In what ways do you put yourself in a box? What labels are you extremely attached to? How would your life improve if you allowed yourself to expand?

This Week's Action Steps
If you would like to choose the bigger you:
- become aware of what limits you put on yourself - listen for "I'm always . . ." "That's just the way I am." "I've always been that way."
- brainstorm directions in which you'd like to expand your self-concept.
- write and use daily an allowing statement/affirmation such as, "I now allow myself to be intellectual and detached when the situation calls for it."

"When we look at the nine types of the Enneagram from the inside out, we discover how we've built a defense structure that has now become our prison. The Enneagram shows us how to dismantle the walls of that prison brick by brick so we can regain our freedom." Kathy Hurley and Theodorre Donson (From the book, "Discover Your Soul Potential: Using the Enneagram to Awaken Spiritual Vitality")

Note: The Enneagram is an ancient personality typing system that continues to offer profound insight into human nature today.

Author's Bio: 

Ann Strong of Life/Work Resources supports people in recognizing and devoting themselves to their life's work. A life-long entrepreneur, she passionately champions self-employment. Blending her previous marketing occupation with her ministry vocation, she coaches people in choosing and creating their unique life/work. When she's not coaching, you'll find her touring houses, writing her heart out or soaking up the New Mexico desert.

If you'd like more information about coaching or you'd like to experience it, call or e-mail Ann to schedule a free, no-obligation, 40-minute coaching session. (303) 399-8737 in metro Denver or (800) 745-2617 outside of Denver. E-mail: Ann@annstrong.com