Thomas Fuller: Two things a man should never be angry at: what he can  help,... | QuoteTab

Or a woman either!  If you can help it, change it.  If you can’t help it, let it go.  This quote reiterates my firm belief that almost all anger is about unfulfilled expectations and the inability to accept your powerlessness over some person or situation.  If you want to lessen your anger, right-size your expectations to fit the reality and accept every thing over which you are powerless.  These ideas work if you work them!  Peace, John 

PS Happy Father’s Day to all you dads out there!

Please send me some feedback on this blog. What did you like about it? What didn’t you like? What topics would you like to hear my thoughts on.  You may also send me an email and a quote that you might like to see me write about on my blog.  You can email your comments to me at jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com Please put the word “blog” in the subject line.  I thank you in advance and wish you well in who you are and in all that you do. 

While it may be incurable, it is one of the few diseases for which we have a definitive treatment.  Once an alcoholic stops drinking, the disease stops progressing.  Much of the physical damage wrought by the disease ceases once the drinking stops.  The psychological and family damage may be another matter.  A recovering alcoholic that drinks again will very quickly return to the point they were in their disease when they first stopped.  It’s almost as if they had never stopped in the first place.  I prefer to say, they just “paused.”  Pickles in solid recovery (i.e. sobriety, meetings, active 12 step programs, sponsor, working the steps) are just as good as cucumbers! What do you think?  Peace, John 

How to leave a comment on this blog: First, make sure that you are on the actual blog: https://personalgrowthconcepts.wordpress.com  (this is important if you are viewing the Touchpoints blog post on Facebook, LinkedIn, other locations or, if it has been forwarded to you by someone else). Above the picture and/or quote there is a title and a date. Just below that, in small print, are the categories and the tags. These are helpful if you’re using the search feature. At the end of those there are the words, “leave a comment.” Click on that and follow the directions. Once you have typed your comment and click send, I will be notified and approve the comment before it will be visible to all. Please let me know if you have any trouble with this. 

And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. ... I can find ...  Quote by Alcoholics Anonymous - QuotesLyfe
From page 417 of the “Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous”  
recovery and addiction, alcoholics anonymous,AA jewelry, gifts

Combine the two.  Accept everything you are directly powerless over (people, places, things, events, and your own feelings).  Then add to that accepting yourself as you are with all your character defects and character assets and your entire history.  This leaves you free to be exactly who you are.  No needing to get on the stage and play a role for other people’s acceptance or approval.  Isn’t it easier being in “the now?”      Peace, John 

Will you volunteer to become a guest blogger?  It’s easy – find a quote that speaks to you and write a few sentences about it and what it means to you, or what it means in general. Send it all to me in an email with subject line reading “Guest blogger.”  I will review and publish it, with gratitude, and with the hope that others will benefit from it as well. If you need some help, I can furnish you with a quote or several to pick from – I have hundreds of them. Let me know.   Peace,  John  

Frequently, it starts out subtle.  Asking you not to go out with your friends or playing the “poor me” so you will stay home and take care of them.  Later it can progress to more outlandish behaviors like forbidding you to call your relatives or even go to work.  Frequently abusers get you questioning your own sanity (gaslighting) and destroy your self-esteem, self-worth and even sense of self.  If you are isolated, over time, any support system you have erodes and you come to believe what you are being told by your abuser because it’s repetitive, wears away at you and there is no one to challenge what you’re being told about yourself. 

Verbal and emotional abuse frequently, but not always, can lead to physical and/or sexual abuse.  Abusers like to control people and situations – I believe that is just a mask for their insecurity.  Again, I believe, the more control one exerts, the more insecure one is.   

Here are a few numbers: 

National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-SAFE(7233) 

Center for Family Justice, Domestic Abuse Hotline (greater Bridgeport area)203–384–9559 

Infoline:  211 

Peace, John

If you appreciate this blog post, I encourage you to share it with your friends on social media. Encourage them to sign up.  Thank you! 

Cupcakes are Muffins that Believed in Miracles“ | Cupcake quotes, Cupcakes,  Cupcake wars

What do you believe about yourself?  Are you a muffin?  Have you prayed to be changed in the twinkling of an eye (I?)?  Or, have you prayed, and then done some hard work?  Father Martin in his movie, Chalk Talk, told the story of a priest who was asked if prayer could actually move a mountain.  The priest answered, “Yes, bring a shovel!”  Be willing to pray as you change your thoughts and actions.  As you begin to do so, break out the frosting and the sprinkles!  Peace, John   

In addition to following me on Facebook and Twitter, you can also follow Personal Growth Concepts, Inc. on Facebook (@PersonalGrowthConceptsInc) and on Twitter (@PGCCounseling)  

Boundaries: “It's so nice when toxic people stop talking to you. It's like  the trash took itself out.” – Boundaries

This kind of “nice” doesn’t usually happen too frequently.  If/when it does, it doesn’t usually last long.  Toxic people usually need an audience.  That’s what pulls them back into resuming talking with you.  If you take their audience away, they’re likely to go perform somewhere else.   Being assertive (not aggressive), setting and enforcing/reinforcing boundaries all help you get ready for “garbage day!”  You deserve some long-term “nice.”     

Happy Mother’s Day! Peace, John 

Please send me some feedback on this blog. What did you like about it? What didn’t you like? What topics would you like to hear my thoughts on.  You may also send me an email and a quote that you might like to see me write about on my blog.  You can email your comments to me at jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com Please put the word “blog” in the subject line.  I thank you in advance and wish you well in who you are and in all that you do

This is a variation on a joke I sometimes share with my clients: did you hear about the butcher who backed into the meat grinder, and got a little “behind” in his work? 😊 Truthfully, when the last time you thought about how you manage your time, your “to do” list and your goals?  Do you use a calendar?  Digital?  Daily or weekly planner?  Do you bother to write things down that you want to do when you think of them?  Do you take a little time each week and each month to review what you’ve accomplished and where you are headed?  I’m always looking for a more efficient way to track my “to do” tasks.  I’ve literally checked out and used at least a dozen time management “to do” apps over the last 6-7 years.  I’m still looking, hoping to increase my efficiency and shave off wasted time.  If you’re interested in managing your time better, I’d be happy to chat with you briefly.  Let me know.  I have a variety of time management forms, schedules, calendars, to do lists, tips that I’m willing to share.  I’ve learned that a little time invested in managing your time saves gobs of time, and reaps many benefits.  Someone once said, “Failing to plan is planning to fail!  Peace, John

How to leave a comment on this blog: 

First, make sure that you are on the actual blog:  https://personalgrowthconcepts.wordpress.com  (this is important if you are viewing the Touchpoints blog post on Facebook, LinkedIn, other locations or, if it has been forwarded to you by someone else). Above the picture and/or quote there is a title and a date. Just below that, in small print, are the categories and the tags. These are helpful if you’re using the search feature. At the end of those there are the words, “leave a comment.” Click on that and follow the directions. Once you have typed your comment and click send, I will be notified and approve the comment before it will be visible to all. Please let me know if you have any trouble with this. 

“What are your gifts?  Oh, I see, you have to unwrap them to see them!”  Pull the ribbon and check them out.  How are you going to have fun with or use them?  Enjoy!   Peace, John      

I invite you to become a guest blogger.  It’s easy – find a quote that speaks to you and write a few sentences about it and what it means to you, or what it means in general. Send it all to me in an email with subject line reading “Guest blogger.”  I will review and publish it, with gratitude, and with the hope that others will benefit from it as well. If you need some help, I can furnish you with a quote or several to pick from – I have hundreds of them. Let me know.   Peace,  John

This quote is marvelous.  If you can’t talk (no service), how can you expect to have a relationship?  Not talking frequently leads people to “fill in the blanks” and make assumptions about what the other person is thinking.  Definitely not good for the relationship!  Trust is about consistency over time.  I know.  I just got off a zoom call with a client where the screen and sound frequently froze up for several seconds.  We had to question each other and repeat ourselves to make sure we were heard and understood.  A lot of extra effort on both our parts.  A lot of people try to have relationships with inconsistent behavior and conversations.  Like my zoom call, it doesn’t seem to work very well.  Need to get a better connection (trust, consistency, time) or settle for just playing games? Who loses when games are played in a relationship? 

Peace, John  

If you enjoyed this blog post, I encourage you to share it with your friends on social media. Encourage them to sign up.  Thank you! 

In your 20's and 30's, you worry about what oth...

If any of us grew up in a chaotic or dysfunctional environment, there’s a good chance we learned about people-pleasing at a young age.  As children, we would give up pieces of ourselves in order to eliminate or ease the pain we felt in our families and home. We might have thought it was a diversion and it may have worked. However, over time, it ends up eroding our self-esteem. 

As we grow older, people pleasing becomes a way of life to avoid rejection and/or fear. In the process, we live someone else’s life and not the life we were created to live. 

How do we stop the people pleasing: Baby Steps. For example, your friends want to go to a restaurant you really don’t like. Why spend your hard earned money and time on something that you don’t enjoy? You can politely say “no thanks” or make suggestions for another restaurant. Or you’d like to make a career change and you don’t because you are going to disappoint your parents, family, friends, etc. You went to college for one field and are working in another. What would “they” think? 

People-pleasing it is not about getting your way all the time as there are compromises we make in life. It’s about being in touch with your feelings and balancing your needs with those of others in a healthy way. 

People-pleasing will erode your self-esteem over time. You’ll experience a low-grade feeling of something just not right. You ask yourself, “Why am I unhappy when I’m doing all these things for people that I love? Why am I unhappy when everything else on the outside looks perfectly fine?” 

After saying “yes” to everything such as being over-extended at the office (taking on the work of others; working over-time again), saying “yes” to babysitting for your sister last minute while canceling or rearranging your plans, or, volunteering for everyone and every organization that asks. Then you wonder to yourself “How did I get here? I’m living a life that is not my own. Yes, I created this life due to the decisions I made – however – at the expense of pleasing others.” 

If you are currently asking yourself, “This is not what I expected for my life?” you are in a good place. You are now open to un-learning this behavior called people pleasing and can start working towards re-discovering your authentic self.

Today’s guest blogger is Kathy M.  As her writing attests, Kathy knows her stuff about people-pleasing.  She has spent most of her life in that activity and in the past several years has made major strides in changing that habit.  She is now able to healthily balance self-care with choosing when and how to do for others.  Thank you Kathy for sharing some of your life lessons with us.  Peace, John

Think Positive To Make Things Positive - One day or day one. You decide....

What do you say “one day…” to?  It’s definitely forward thinking but do you ever set a definite goal?  Timeframe?  Or is it just “pie-in-the-sky” thinking?  Wishful thinking?  No decision! 

Try “day one.”  How many days might it take?  Probably not as many as “one day” led you to believe.  Day one = get started now. 

Anthony Robbins, the great motivational speaker, suggests doing something every single day toward reaching a goal that you have set.  Working toward it keeps it in your mindset and allows you to make connections and take little steps.  Over time those little steps accumulate and you would be surprised the distance you can cover in a week or two.  Try it.  Day One.  You decide. 

Peace, John 

In addition to following me on Facebook and Twitter, you can also follow Personal Growth Concepts, Inc. on Facebook (@PersonalGrowthConceptsInc) and on Twitter (@PGCCounseling)  

“What if the only thing in your own way is you?” 

Finding the path forward | by Paul Kember | LinkedIn

I generally don’t like “what if’s…” since they take you away from reality and into wishful thinking.  However, this quote suggests you look at yourself and what you want to accomplish.  Frequently we have obstacles or challenges along the way.  Sometimes the biggest obstacle is our thinking, negative thinking, self-deprecating thinking, impossibility thinking.  If the only thing in your way is your self, what could you change to get moving ahead again?  What would it take?  Probably not as much as you had “what iffed!”  Peace, John 

How to leave a comment on this blog: 

First, make sure that you are on the actual blog: https://personalgrowthconcepts.wordpress.com  (this is important if you are viewing the Touchpoints blog post on Facebook, LinkedIn, other locations or, if it has been forwarded to you by someone else). Above the picture and/or quote there is a title and a date. Just below that, in small print, are the categories and the tags. These are helpful if you’re using the search feature. At the end of those there are the words, “leave a comment.” Click on that and follow the directions. Once you have typed your comment and click send, I will be notified and approve the comment before it will be visible to all. Please let me know if you have any trouble with this. 

Doing The Best At This Moment - Taste Life, with Chere Bork | In this  moment, The good place, Oprah winfrey

I work on the philosophy that, when knocked down, there are two options: stay down or get back up.  When getting back up, there is always the prevailing question of “what next?”  When dealing with an anxiety disorder, it’s challenging to get back up.  And it’s even more challenging to plan out your next move because you feel like the first move you made ruined the outcome of the situation at hand.  It’s hard for someone who suffers from anxiety, like myself, to push past the idea that the world is working against you, nothing is going to be able to rectify the situation, the consequences are going to be horrible, and, most importantly, you cannot breathe.  Recently, I have learned to ground myself in the present time when I am feeling anxious.  A key component of an anxiety attack, to me, is that I am unable to fix something and it is ruined.  Before I was able to ground myself in the moment, I was allowing myself to jump ahead to a future scenario that I had fabricated in my mind.  I did not allow myself to do my best in that present moment to give myself the upper hand for the next.  Through this grounding technique of being in the moment, I learned to accept my missteps, ignore the fabricated future scenario, and think about what I can do at this moment to move to the next moment as swiftly as possible.  There is a feeling of empowerment when you’re able to adapt and not let anxiety win.  Doing what is best in this moment, right here and now, will put you in the best position for the future. 

Our guest blogger today is Jada Middleton, a college senior Psychology student who has been interning with Personal Growth Concepts Inc. this semester.  She is planning on starting a Masters in Social Work program in the Fall and we are helping her get acclimated to the kinds of things we do as social workers and clinicians.  We thank her for this contribution to our blog and hope she will grace us with at least another post before she leaves us at the beginning of May.  I hope each of you who reads this blog will benefit from her wisdom and sharing.  Peace, John 

Pin by Ismael Amanda Luviano on Quotes/Memes | Mommy quotes, Parenting  quotes, Mom quotes

Four types of parenting styles are: 

  • Authoritative (warm & responsive, clear rules, high expectations, supportive, value independence) 
  • Authoritarian/Disciplinarian (unresponsive, strict rules, high expectation, expect blind obedience) 
  • Permissive (warm and responsive, few or no rules, indulgent, lenient
  • Neglectful (cold and unresponsive, no rules, uninvolved, indifferent) 

For more info on the above and the effect each style is likely to have on a child’s behaviors, go to: https://www.parentingforbrain.com/4-baumrind-parenting-styles/ 

How were you parented?  How has that influenced your ability to parent your children?  How do you wish you had been parented?   

How have/are you parenting your children? Is there anything you can change in your parenting that will help your monkeys become better monkeys?   

Peace, John  

I invite you to become a guest blogger.  It’s easy: find a quote that speaks to you and write a few sentences about it and what it means to you, or what it means in general. Send it all to me in an email with subject line reading “Guest Blogger.”  I will review and publish it, with gratitude, and with the hope that others will benefit from it as well. If you need some help, I can furnish you with a quote or several to pick from – I have hundreds of them. Let me know.   Peace,  John   

You'll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The  secret of your success… | Insightful quotes, Motivational quotes for  success, Babe quotes

Think back on several changes that you’ve made in your life.  How many of them involved changing a daily pattern?  Even if you made a radical change, that change needs to be reinforced to be maintained.  More gradual changes usually start out with small behaviors that are continued daily.  Over time, and with repetition, small changes become habituated, normalized and part of a different you.

Now, think forward to changes you would like to make in your life.  What daily pattern can you begin to change that will lead you to where you want to go?  Does it need to be radical?  If not, start small, persist and a new you will soon manifest.  Keep the focus on yourself, on persisting and watch as you “change your life,” one daily habit at a time.    

Peace, John 

If you enjoyed this blog post, I encourage you to share it with your friends on social media. Encourage them to sign up.  Thank you! 

A person looking at a sign

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Grief is like a detour on the road of life.  It comes when you are not expecting it.  It causes you to get off the path you are on and take a different path. This path is unfamiliar and requires more focus to navigate.  The route can be confusing and frustrating.  The plans and expectations of the original path are disrupted. 

As with any detour, most people experiencing grief navigate their way back to the main road of life with the help of their support network.  Others on this grief detour get disoriented and lost.  They need help to get back to their road of life. They need to ask directions from someone who knows the way.  This is not a sign of weakness, but rather the soul’s desire to be healed. 

If you need help navigating your grief, don’t hesitate to ask for help.  There are resources available and people trained to help navigate your journey back. 

And remember, no detour lasts forever.  Eventually, you will find yourself back on the road, having grown from the experience and perhaps equipped to help others find their way. 

~ Charley Mead, MA, LPC-A, NCA 

I would like to thank Charley Mead from our staff for contributing this blog and a different way of thinking about and understanding grief.  This is Charley’s first post on our blog and we welcome his contribution and look forward to more of his words of wisdom in the future. Your feedback would be appreciated.  Peace, John 

I thought we could all benefit from some quarantine chuckles.  These were shared with me several months ago by my sister. Enjoy!  Peace, John  

 
– I’m having a quarantine party this weekend! None of you are invited! 
  
– We are just two to three weeks away from learning everyone’s real hair color. 
   
– All these people are worrying about a baby boom in the next nine months. Two days of homeschooling should nip that right in the bud! 
  
– All I can think about now when I’m watching any TV show or movie is how everyone is standing WAY too close together. [me too!] 
  
– I used to spin that toilet paper like I was on Wheel of Fortune. Now I turn it like I’m cracking a safe! 
  
– The Department of Health is looking to hire couples married seven years or more to educate people on social distancing. 
 
– Quarantine Day 16. I’ve started taking calls from telemarketers. Some of them are actually quite nice. Jamar from Superior Life Insurance has a new baby! 
  
– Grocery shopping has become a real life version of Pac-Man. Avoid everyone, get the fruit, and take any route possible to avoid contact. 
  
– So we don’t go to restaurants, kids aren’t signed up for anything, and we are staying home for Spring Break? Sounds like my childhood. 
  
– This is like being 16 again. Gas is cheap and I’m grounded. Geez! 
 
– My wife and I play this fun game during quarantine. It’s called, “Why Are You Doing It That Way?” There are no winners! 
 
– When we come out of this and I ask you where you want to eat, I do NOT want to hear, “I don’t know.” …YOU HAD 365 DAYS! 
 
– Can’t wait until this is over so I can go back to social distancing on my own terms. 
 
– Just bought six pounds of cheese. Won’t need toilet paper now. 
 
– My car probably thinks I died. 
 
– It’s been a blessing being home with the wife for three weeks now. We’ve caught up on everything I’ve done wrong for 15 years. 
 
– If your parents are over 60 and want to go out … FORBID THEM! If they complain and say, “But everyone else is doing it,” tell them, “You’re not everyone.” IT’S PAYBACK TIME! 
 
– Hormel Foods made their first batch of SPAM in 1937. With everyone out shopping and hoarding food, they have announced they will be making their second batch later this week! 
 
– Due to my isolation, I finished three books yesterday. And believe me, that’s a lot of coloring!  
 
– Anyone else getting a tan from the light in your refrigerator? 

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY

Image result for heart

Image result for “shame says that because i am flawed, i am unacceptable. grace says that though i am flawed, i am cherished!”

Shame = I am not good enough. Usually based on lies we’ve been told about ourselves that we believed because we didn’t know any better.   

Grace = the undeserved, overflowing, never-ending gifts to each of us from God that we can do nothing to deserve but it keeps coming anyway. The sign of his love for us. God is good, all the time.  All the time, God is good. 

Blessings & Peace, John  

Facebook

This is particularly true of depression.  Nobody chooses depression.  They can’t “snap out of it” any more than someone could “snap” themselves into it.  Depression can be caused by an upset in body chemistry and/or psychological reactions to life situations, many of which are out of the person’s control.   There are also genetic factors at play in some cases.  People who are depressed can do some things to assist their situation: regular sleep, healthy nutrition, regular exercise, more positive thinking, meaningful contact with others, counseling, and, if the depression lingers, an appointment with their primary care physician to rule out physical causes.  If you care about them, make time to be with them, listen to them, check in with them and share your concerns with them.  Do not be pushy and do not try to force them to do anything unless they are suicidal.  If they are suicidal, the best resources would be for you to call 911, 211, Infoline or the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.  Do NOT tell them or try to get them to “snap out of it.”  That doesn’t work!! 

Peace, John

In addition to following me on Facebook and Twitter, you can also follow Personal Growth Concepts, Inc. on Facebook (@PersonalGrowthConceptsInc) and on Twitter (@PGCCounseling)  

Greetings!  John Pacheco and Personal Growth Concepts Inc. (PGC) are pleased to announce 2 free covid-related support groups.  Both groups will begin during early February, 2021 and will each consist of 8 sessions facilitated by professional counselors.  They are being offered to provide additional support to those experiencing increased anxiety and/or are grieving the loss of a relative, co-worker or friend due to Covid 19.  They are free.  Donations will be accepted to help support some of PGC’s neediest clients.  Advanced registration is required on/before February 1st.  We have 2 flyers announcing each of these groups.  Please help us spread the word.  For more information, or to register, please call us at 203-375-5782 x 1.  Please speak clearly and leave your name and phone number.  One of our staff will get back to you, usually within 24 hours. Thank you!

If you want copies of the flyers, please email me at jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com with “request covid flyers” in the subject line.

I wish you peace in who you are and in all that you do.   John

EASY DOES IT – “There’s no need to put pressure on yourself. Take life one stride at a time and you’ll be surprised at the goals you have accomplished without the stress.” ~contributed by Aggie R 

I’m as guilty as the next person, always putting pressure on myself.  It seems that my “to do” lists, despite my hard work, keep getting longer and longer.  The first SoulCollage® card I made is entitled “Rest” and, when I look at it, reminds me to take it easy.  I’ve been a little better lately taking breaks and I seem to be getting a little more accomplished.  Won’t you give it a try? 

Peace, John 

How to leave a comment on this blog: 

First, make sure that you are on the actual blog: https://personalgrowthconcepts.wordpress.com  (this is important if you are viewing the Touchpoints blogpost on Facebook, LinkedIn, other locations or, if it has been forwarded to you by someone else). Above the picture and/or quote there is a title and a date. Just below that, in small print, are the categories and the tags. These are helpful if you’re using the search feature. At the end of those there are the words, “leave a comment.” Click on that and follow the directions. Once you have typed your comment and click send, I will be notified and approve the comment before it will be visible to all. Please let me know if you have any trouble with this. 

Facebook

There’s a lot of important things in communication.  Some of these include: what is said, when it’s said, how it’s said, the words used, volume, inflection, cadence, the history and values of the sender and the receiver, and the medium & environment through which the message is sent.  The above quote points out how important it is what isn’t said.  The sender chooses.  Sometimes, what they choose to skip can be an oversight; at other times, it’s deliberate (i.e. what they maybe don’t want you to know!)  As receivers, we need to be aware of what hasn’t been said and check our assumptions.  There is a natural tendency to fill in what we don’t know with how we think it should be.  Then we need to remember, there’s a lot more going on with the sender than we know – keeps us humble, don’t you think?  Finally, I have an excellent handout entitled, “Please Listen to What I’m Not Saying.”  If you would like a copy of it, please send me an email (jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com with the request in the subject line. 

Happy New Year!  Peace, John

I invite you to become a guest blogger.  It’s easy. Find a quote that speaks to you and write a few sentences about it and what it means to you, or what it means in general. Send it all to me in an email with the subject line reading “Guest Blogger.”  I will review and publish it, with gratitude, and with the hope that others will benefit from it as well. If you need some help, I can furnish you with a quote or several to pick from – I have hundreds of them. Please take me up on this offer.   Peace,  John  

“When we do for other people what they should do for themselves, we both stay stuck!” 

The key word here is “should.”  A lot of people aren’t clear what they should do and what others should do.  Boundaries needed, but boundaries not well learned/respected for these folks!  What’s my stuff and what’s your stuff?  If we do for others because we choose to, that’s a different matter.  If we feel obligated to, for them to be happy or because they are irresponsible and won’t take care of it themselves, then we are creating difficulty.  We prevent them from learning how to do for themselves – thus they stay stuck dependent upon us or others to handle their business.  A byproduct of this unhealthy dependency is anger. This is because they know they will struggle when/if we stop fixing things for them. Our anger is because we are wasting time attending them and abandoning ourselves in the process.  When we’re handling their business, we’re not taking care of ours. Stuck!  The tow truck?  I statements.  Saying no.  Hanging up/walking away.  Maybe you won’t be liked initially but at least you won’t be stuck like Brer Rabbit and Tar Baby! 

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Peace, John 

If you enjoyed this blog post, I encourage you to share it with your friends on social media. Encourage them to sign up.  Thank you! 

Sarosh Amaria (@sarosh_amaria) | Twitter

I have a question for you today: “If you are going to change, do you change the thinking or the behavior first?”  I’ve pondered this over the years and come to the conclusion that it doesn’t matter which one is first; they both have to happen for you to create change.  The 12 step programs have a saying: “Change a thought, move a muscle.”  My addendum: “If that doesn’t work, move a muscle, change a thought!”  One last thing to remember, if you’re going to be making changes, feelings are the part that “goes over the fence last.”  By that I mean, when you change, the feelings are always playing catch-up.  They’re catching up to the new thought and/or the new behavior.  Let me know if this pattern works for you – consider sending me some examples from your life. 

Peace, John 

Please send me some feedback on this blog. What did you like about it? What didn’t you like? What topics would you like to hear my thoughts on.  You may also send me an email and a quote that you might like to see me write about on my blog.  You can email your comments to me at jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com Please put the word “blog” in the subject line.  I thank you in advance and wish you well in who you are and in all that you do. 

Intellectuals solve problems, geniuses prevent them. - Albert Einstein

When I solve a problem, I try to solve two problems.  First, I have to generate and think my way through various options, play out different scenarios in my head, sometimes use trial and error and trust some “God instances,” not “coincidences!”  Once I’ve mastered it, I take up the second problem.  What can I do to prevent this or similar challenges in the future?  Sound advice in the quote above!  Fix ‘em and prevent ‘em.  Think that might help you? 

Peace, John 

In addition to following me on Facebook and Twitter, you can also follow Personal Growth Concepts, Inc. on Facebook (@PersonalGrowthConceptsInc) and on Twitter (@PGCCounseling)  

Small steps

How many of you remember the children’s game, “Mother May I?”  “Mother, may I take 2 baby steps forward?”  Back then the goals were not to forget to say “Mother May I….”  and to be the first to reach Mother.  Was that training for life?  While you no longer have to ask permission most of us want to keep moving in a positive direction.  Consistently taking baby steps in that direction will get you where you want to go.  It will take some acceptance, time, patience and persistence.  Permission? “YES YOU MAY……!” 

Peace, John 

How to leave a comment on this blog: 

First, make sure that you are on the actual blog:  https://personalgrowthconcepts.wordpress.com  (this is important if you are viewing the Touchpoints blog post on Facebook, LinkedIn, other locations or, if it has been forwarded to you by someone else). Above the picture and/or quote there is a title and a date. Just below that, in small print, are the categories and the tags. These are helpful if you’re using the search feature. At the end of those there are the words, “leave a comment.” Click on that and follow the directions. Once you have typed your comment and click send, I will be notified and approve the comment before it will be visible to all. Please let me know if you have any trouble with this. 

Walls Keep Everybody Out

No walls frequently is tantamount to chaos, like bumper cars. Walls create a firm division.  Separate sides: you and yours; me and mine.  Walls tend to be rigid, immovable. Boundaries are a flexible line in the sand.  Here is where and how I let you through.  Emphasis on the word “I.”  I choose, considering when/if there is good reason.  Generally, I ask, “Who goes there, friend or foe?”  If friend, I am more apt to lessen the boundary.  If I’ve been burned before, I am more apt to tighten the boundary.  Boundaries are more flexible, semipermeable, see-through and reasonably adjustable based on the people and the situation.  They can be tightened up or loosened as deemed appropriate.  In your relationships, have you learned where the doors are? 

Robert Frost wrote a poem called, “Mending Wall.”  If you would like a copy of it, please email a request to me at  jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com  It’s worth reading and re-flecting upon if you struggle with boundaries. 

Peace, John 

I invite you to become a guest blogger.  It’s easy, find a quote that speaks to you and write a few sentences about it and what it means to you, or what it means in general. Send it all to me in an email with subject line reading “Guest blogger.”  I will review and publish it, with gratitude, and with the hope that others will benefit from it as well.  If you need some help, I can furnish you with a quote or several to pick from – I have hundreds of them. Let me know.   Peace,  John 

Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order  than the one you have in mind. | Twin flame quotes, Ruskin bond,  Inspirational quotes

As I write this, I reflect on what the difference is between being patient and being powerless.  Have you ever thought about that?  Being powerless means there is nothing you can do.  Being patient is doing something; allowing time to pass and waiting for a process to eventuate.  Perhaps you have some say in the process, perhaps not.  I learned a long time ago that, sometimes, if you take no action, things work out on their own.  The secret is knowing if/when to take action and when to play “HOT POTATO.”  Learn to trust your self and the process.  A different way may be better than your way.  Experience is a good teacher.  Learn well! 

Have a blessed and peace-filled Thanksgiving. And, please, patience with our current process. 

Peace, John 

If you enjoyed this blog post, I encourage you to share it with your friends on social media. Encourage them to sign up.  Thank you! 

Worry Jar (+ES) [F] (GS)

I don’t know if you can read clearly the top of the above graphic so I’ve written it out here for you.  It says–

A “Worry Jar” is a helpful way to decrease your anxious thoughts and worries.  Placing your thoughts in the jar will help get them off your mind, at least for a little while.  What are some things you’d like to stop worrying about for now?  Write them in the jar!

The worry jar is a frequently used tool for clients who are anxious.  They think about the future and imagine negative happenings, most of which will probably not occur.  A lot of time and emotional energy is wasted this way.  Is this an escape from the reality of the present?  You can physically get a jar (large one if you worry a lot 😊) and as you identify worries throughout your day, jot them down on a slip of paper and place them into the jar.  Try to let them go, into the jar.  Then, once a day at a set time, pull them out and do all your worrying all at once.  If you do this in the morning, you can get all your worrying done for the rest of the day.  If you do it in the evening you can “clear the slate” at the end of the day and hopefully, have a restful slumber.  When you’re done each day, throw them all away; you may even want to rip them to pieces!).  Repeat the process again.

Doing this may sound bizarre, but be careful not to criticize until you’ve tried it.  The secret is putting it in the jar and letting go, freeing yourself from the needless worry, anxiety and returning back to the here and now.

An alternative to the jar and the scraps of paper is suggested above.  Draw a picture of a big jar and write your worries on the picture, in the jar.  You’ll need some paper on hand, one sheet for each day. 

Peace, John

Please send me some feedback on this blog. Have you tried it, or if you try it once you read about it, how well it worked/works for you? What did you like about the blog? What don’t you like? What topics would you like to hear my thoughts on?  You may also send me an email and a quote that you might like to see me write about on my blog.  You can email your comments to me at jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com Please put the word “blog” in the subject line.  I thank you in advance and wish you well in who you are and in all that you do.

Have you been feeling angry, afraid or resentful lately?  The above quote makes them all a variation on one theme.  If you’re feeling angry, it’s probably because you’re powerless over something that you don’t want to be. 

If you’re feeling afraid, you’re imagining something that might happen in the future.  Ask yourself, how likely is that to happen?  Then answer that question!

If your resentful, you’re hanging onto past angers.  Do you want to keep poisoning yourself with your past or would you rather let go and return to the present and fully face how little control you have over things?  In short the only two things you can directly control are your thoughts and your behaviors which include not only what you do, but what you say and how you say it. 

Life gets easier when you work on controlling only those two things.  In sum, you’re powerless over everything else.  Why not keep it simple?

Peace, John

In addition to following me on Facebook and Twitter, you can also follow Personal Growth Concepts, Inc. on Facebook (@PersonalGrowthConceptsInc) and on Twitter (@PGCCounseling)

I am in the process of becoming the best version of myself. #positivitynote #upliftingyourspirit
AN AFFIRMATION FOR YOU!

I  =  I statement  (yeah!)

AM  =  present tense  (now!)

PROCESS  =  not set in stone  (moving!)

BECOMING  =  direction  (progress!)

BEST  =  better than…  (optimizing!)

VERSION  =  updated  (improved!)

MYSELF  =  I statement again = my self  (YEAH!!)

Make it happen!

Peace,  John

If you haven’t already, please vote on Tuesday. Stay safe & be well.

How to leave a comment on this blog: First, make sure that you are on the actual blog:

https://personalgrowthconcepts.wordpress.com  (this is important if you are viewing the Touchpoints blog post on Facebook, LinkedIn, other locations or, if it has been forwarded to you by someone else). Above the picture and/or quote there is a title and a date. Just below that, in small print, are the categories and the tags. These are helpful if you’re using the search feature. At the end of those there are the words, “leave a comment.” Click on that and follow the directions. Once you have typed your comment and click send, I will be notified and approve the comment before it will be visible to all. Please let me know if you have any trouble with this.

minions life is like a camera - Google Search | Minions quotes, Funny  minion quotes, Minion quotes
CLICK!

I did a similar blogpost back on 2/18/18.  This one’s a little different and it goes further than the previous one. 

Anyone with a camera knows it needs to be focused.  Newer cameras have an autofocus but in our lives these days we need to constantly refocus.  I used to be in a networking group and would tell the group members that when they and their referrals worked with me, it was “no hocus-pocus, just a lot of: focus, focus, focus!”

I recently had a weeklong “staycation.”  One of the things I did was pull all my cell phone pictures together.  Technology helped but I did spend some time and looked through through over 7000 pictures.  Almost all of them were captured when I was having a “good time,” on vacation, day trips, with family, holidays, etc.

Hardly anybody enjoys looking at the black filmy negatives.  Looking and being positive is easier and more pleasing, don’t you think?  You need to do something to get away from the negatives and enjoy the more positive memories.

Extending this metaphor further, a good photographer has a good sense of balance in the picture – things spread out across the picture, not too clumped together and a sense of perspective.  Also, the frame around the picture can make a difference.  What goes around comes around and effects the presentation and visualization.

Finally, cameras capture reality, what IS at that moment in time.  Reality can and does change. By moving yourself, the camera, changing angles and allowing time to pass…., a different capture.  If you don’t like what life is giving you, change something and take another shot!  Click….. Click…… Click!

Peace, John

I invite you to become a guest blogger.  It’s easy à find a quote that speaks to you and write a few sentences about it and what it means to you, or what it means in general. Send it all to me in an email (jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com) with subject line reading “Guest blogger.”  I will review and publish it, with gratitude, and with the hope that others will benefit from it as well. If you need some help, I can furnish you with a quote or several to pick from – I have hundreds of them. Let me know.   Peace,  John  

Alcoholism - Not a Spectator Sport | Leadership ConneXtions

I once conducted a workshop entitled “The Black Hole of Codependency.”  I pointed out that an addicted person could create such a whirlwind that those close around them ended up being pulled into the vacuum and losing any sense of themselves.  Such is the power of addiction.  Most addicts have people in their daily life, either in their families, work or social activities that get affected by the addiction.  The people closest to an addict, without help themselves, frequently become enablers, and end up participating in the denial, lying, minimizing and rationalizing.  They get so focused on the addict that they lose touch with themselves.  Most of what they’re doing is well-intentioned, but usually doesn’t work very well in the long run.  I’d like to point out that those close to an addict can recover, get better and learn how to focus more on themselves.  Most family members that come to counseling for an addict, want us to help them get the addict abstinent.  We can’t do that anymore than they can.  What we can do is help the family to get in touch with themselves, accept their powerlessness over the addict and the addiction, and get on with their lives.  Frequently when this happens, the addict loses their enablers and, either gets worse, or occasionally, when they feel the consequences of their behavior, get better.  Help IS available for the family.  Professional counseling with those familiar with addictions’ effects on the family, and self help meetings such as Al-Anon, Alateen and Naranon are available.

I’ll end with a brief but true anecdote.  Many years ago I was conducting an initial session with a couple.  I knew ahead of time that one of them had an addiction problem.  After talking with them for an hour, I didn’t know which one it was.  I asked and they each pointed to the other!  Three weeks later when one of them entered treatment, I had my answer.  I didn’t know sooner because both of them exhibited similar signs: focusing on external reasons for their behavior, justifying the arguments they had had with each other and creating diversions so that neither of them owned the responsibility for themselves.

Just saying…… If you are affected by somebody’s addiction, please seriously consider getting help for your self.  You deserve it.  In doing so it might eventually help the addict.  In doing so you may not get sucked into the black hole of their addiction.  Peace, John

If you enjoyed this blog post, I encourage you to share it with your friends on social media. Encourage them to sign up.  Thank you!

If you live for people's acceptance - Delightful Quotes

If you live for people’s acceptance, chances are good you are codependent.  You are probably seeking their approval and allowing yourself to be held hostage.  Perhaps this has its origins with the family you grew up with or in a significant relationship you had.  It feeds into others needs to be in control and, if you continue to allow it, keeps you in a “victim role.”  You may be staying in it because it feels familiar but it’s not healthy for you in the long run.  Those situations are behind you now.  If you are not going to die from their rejection, will you choose to live for your own self acceptance?  Self acceptance starts here and now – this is me, all of my history, thoughts, feelings and behaviors to date.  This is my starting point – where do I go from here?  What choices do I make today that are in my best interests while considering those who care about me.  Can I accept myself just as I am?  I am the clay on the potter’s wheel that I have to start working with, shaping it to who I am.  Let’s get spinning!

Pin on Health - Louise Hay Affirmations

I don’t like that word “react.”  I think the word “respond” fits better.  If we react we are still letting others “punch our buttons.”  As Louise Hay points out, we need to keep the focus on ourselves, and what we think and believe about who we are.  A handout on the door of our Naugatuck office proclaims, around a sketch of a really tough looking guy, “I know I’m somebody, ‘cause God don’t make NO junk.”  What do you believe about yourself?  Peace, John  

In addition to following me on Facebook and Twitter, you can also follow Personal Growth Concepts, Inc. on Facebook (@PersonalGrowthConceptsInc) and on Twitter (@PGCCounseling)  

Run from the Drama stricken people don't attend their performance. My soul  has been free from this for some time… | Workplace quotes, Drama free  quotes, Work quotes

This is a variation on a quote of mine: “When the drama starts, get out of the auditorium.”  I sometimes go on to further explain that if you don’t get out, you run the risk of being pulled up onto the stage and becoming part of the production.  And then I ask how much did the ticket cost?  Was it worth it?  You might also ask, who wrote the script?  Of course, if you’re not in attendance, you don’t have to ask/answer any of these questions.  Fill in the blank: “Simple is _______________.”   Peace, John 

Please send me some feedback on this blog. What did you like about it? What didn’t you like? What topics would you like to hear my thoughts on.  You may also send me an email and a quote that you might like to see me write about on our blog.  You can email your comments to me at jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com Please put the word “blog” in the subject line.  I thank you in advance and wish you well in who you are and in all that you do. 

If It Doesn't Open It's Not Your Door | Meme on ME.ME

Sounds logical doesn’t it?  How many times have you wanted something so bad and kept turning the doorknob?  Hope can be a funny thing – skewing our logic.

I’m reminded of a study I once read.  A group of scientists built a rat maze and trained a group of rats to run it. When the rats got to the end, there was a reinforcement;  they pushed a lever and got some rat food. The scientists then made the exact same maze but human size, sheetrocking 2 rooms in the laboratory.  They then got a group of human subjects and trained them to run the human-size maze the exact same way they had trained the rats. At the end, the human subjects would push their lever and get a human reinforcement, probably something like M&Ms. When the scientists knew both the rats and humans were successful and knew how to run their respective mazes, they stopped the reinforcement totally. The rats would run their maze, push the lever …… nothing! The humans ran their maze, pushed the lever …… nothing!  The rats ran their maze 6 or 7 times, got nothing, and stopped running the maze.  The humans, 2 days later were still running their maze!!!  

[A-mazing!:)] What does that say about our “evolved brains” and our emotions?  

Hope can be a powerful incentive for us to persist, but, it can also lead us down the path of wasted time and effort.  Hope needs to be balanced with reasoning and logic. Sometimes there is more than one way to open a door; other times, it’s not meant for you to open. Like the rats, your time might be better spent looking for what you want somewhere else. Don’t be afraid to walk away from some locked doors.  Peace, John   

Please send me some feedback on this blog. What did you like about it? What didn’t you like? What topics would you like to hear my thoughts on.  You may also send me an email and a quote that you might like to see me write about on my blog.  You can email your comments to me at jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com  Please put the word “blog” in the subject line.  I thank you in advance and wish you well in who you are and in all that you do. 

“Detachment is removing yourself from someone else’s outcome” 

In enmeshment, the opposite of detachment, you and the other person are almost indistinguishable.  There are no boundaries and codependency is the name of the game.  Frequently the person you’re enmeshed with is in the lead car and you’re in the second car of their roller coaster.  They go up, and you go up.  They go down, and you go down!  In order to break the cycle, you have to get off the roller coaster.  What’s more, you also have to refuse to get back on it again when they are getting ready for the drama of their next ride.  Detachment!  Why not let them ride alone?  Try being in charge of your own outcomes for a change!  Less drama?  More productivity? Smoother rides! Peace, John

Please send me some feedback on this blog. What did you like about it? What didn’t you like? What topics would you like to hear my thoughts on.  You may also send me an email and a quote that you might like to see me write about on my blog.  You can email your comments to me at jpacheco@personalgrowthconcepts.com Please put the word “blog” in the subject line.  I thank you in advance and wish you well in who you are and in all that you do.

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