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Coach's Corner

Coach's Corner

    Coach's Corner

Do you need some assistance with your life or your career?  Or maybe just the gentle nudge to motivate you.  This is place for you.  Make sure you are ready to be called into the next play.   ATD Lincoln's coaches, consultants, and guidance counselors will get you moving in the right direction.


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  • Fri, March 31, 2017 10:47 PM | Deleted user

    Ah . . . spring . . .  We recently recognized the official beginning of spring, the season of new growth and new life.  I love spring with its longer days, green lawns, buds and blossoms on the trees, spring flowers such as daffodils, tulips, crocus and hyacinth.  Lilacs will soon be blooming and sharing their sweet aroma with us.  The beginning of spring also signifies the end of winter.  Instead of snow, we now have more rain which causes growth in nature.  We left behind “ordinary time” and began “daylight saving time” which, in theory, allows us to begin longer days as we move into warmer seasons.  In six to eight weeks, students will experience the end of the school year and the beginning of vacation.  Our lives are full of endings and new beginnings.  As we begin spring, the season of new life, I am assessing my life and am deciding what I want to leave behind as I move into a new season.

                    As many of you who have had the experience of parenting can attest to, raising children takes much time and energy.  My son is now in college so this is my opportunity to begin a new phase whereby I can focus on different aspects of my personal and professional life.  I am a life coach and counselor in private practice and I want to focus my energy on teaching workshops, webinars and courses and to get back out and do more public speaking.  I was a teacher in my former life and I love teaching about topics that I have a passion for, namely those related to personal and professional growth (i.e. creating balance, finding meaning and fulfillment, achieving goals and dreams, etc.).  I also have an English degree and have always wanted to be an author, a dream that I am nearly ready to see in the physical world!

                    I have recently discontinued working with some insurance companies that I decided were more work than the paycheck was worth.  I also decided to be more selective about the clientele that I am willing to work with as I want to focus on people that give me energy instead of draining it from me.  I want to work with people who are ready and willing to make changes in their lives without excuses!  I am ready to give up the aspects of my work that I don’t enjoy as much so I can replace those aspects with things I do enjoy!  I realize that I can’t make room in my life for the things that are most important to me if I continue to do things that aren’t as important to me.  It is like an overstuffed closet, so full of old clothes that are out of style and don’t fit, that there is no room for new clothes that you love!  Until you get rid of some things, you have no room for anything new.  I guess you could say that I am spring cleaning my professional life! 

    I made a list of all of the professional organizations that I have tried over the years and was amazed at how long the list was.  As I evaluated the list, it was obvious that I couldn’t do all of them at the same time and I saw how I had let some go while I replaced those with others.  I realized that some organizations weren’t offering me enough benefits for the time and/or money involved so I let them go.  Some organizations were useful and enjoyable for a while, but lost their luster over time.  Some required more time and energy than I had/have to offer.  I realize that every time I say “yes” to something, I must say “no” to something else. I can’t continue to be involved with all of the organizations that I have been a member of and have enough time to devote to my goals and dreams.  I have joined some new organizations that will help me in this new phase of my career so I have to “clean out the closet” and let some of the others go. 

                    I have enjoyed writing the Coaches’ Corner Blog for ASTD/ATD for the past three years.  This has been a great opportunity for me to write about coaching topics and has renewed my love for writing. Although I will miss writing for ATD, some of the members I have come to know, and the professional opportunities ATD has offered me, it is time to make the transition.  As I am ending this chapter with ATD, I am opening a new chapter in my career life.  I am taking my love of writing and am using it to finish writing my book on creating a balanced life which I am hoping to release this summer!  Cleaning out my professional closet is one of the keys to creating balance in my life.  If I am going to teach it, I must live it!  I have joined some writing organizations and am taking advantage of new opportunities to meet other writers and to learn from them as I prepare to publish my first book.

                    I am an active member and officer in my Toastmasters club and will continue to do this as I enjoy public speaking and the relationships I have built with this group.  I will continue with my coaching and counseling organizations as they are directly related to my work.  I will look for ATD trainings that are interesting to me and are directly related to my business goals, but I will not be writing the monthly blog.  Maybe down the road, I will clean out my professional organization closet and will find I have room for it.  Until then, I will allow somebody else the opportunity.

                    Thank you for this opportunity, for the support, the encouragement and the professionalism you have given to me as a member of ATD.  I look forward to seeing you at upcoming trainings and I wish you all well.  I would like to offer a special thank you to Paul Krutak who has been my proofreader and my contact person for the Coaches’ Corner!  Here’s to new beginnings!

    Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, Nebraska is a certified life coach and professional counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, offers webinars, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  She is the author of a soon to be released book on achieving a balanced life. You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  Check the website or call for more information.

  • Wed, January 04, 2017 11:38 AM | Deleted user

    As I was considering what to write about at the beginning of this New Year, I was going to write about reflecting on our accomplishments.  I realized I had already written about that so I thought about how we see the New Year as an opportunity for change and decided to go with that.  We often think that we need to make drastic changes that require tremendous effort.  I want to challenge that thinking with the idea of making small changes over time to transform our lives.

    Many of us begin the New Year with ambitions of losing weight and exercising more so the gyms are full…until February.  What happens?  We have set the bar so high that it is unreachable, so we give up altogether and go back to old habits, waiting until next year to try again.  What if we changed our mindset from the idea that we need to exercise six or seven days a week for an hour at a time to increasing our activity by 10%?  Not completely overturning our lives and our schedules, but a small reasonable change can lead to long term success.  If you already exercise three hours a week that is 180 minutes.  Add 10%, 18 minutes, and see what happens.  It’s easier to fit into your schedule, doesn’t cause drastic upheaval, and makes it easier to achieve.  If you do this in small increments over time, you will have a gradual shift that is easier to maintain as you work your way up to four or five hours a week.

    What about sleep habits?  If you currently are only getting six hours, what about increasing it by 10% so you get an additional 36 minutes of sleep each night?  How would you feel?  It may not seem like much, but it is a small change that can make a big difference over time.  As you adjust, you can make another small change and before long, you will be getting seven or seven and a half hours of sleep!  This makes a huge difference in your health, your energy level and your productivity.

    Healthy eating is a huge goal for us.  As we start a New Year, many of us start a new diet.  Then we realize it is too difficult to sustain because it requires too much change all at once, so we give it up and revert back to old habits until next year.  What if we changed this mindset to one of small goals and successes?  Instead of the “all or nothing” mentality which says “absolutely no sugar” which causes us to feel deprived and crave it more, substitute the idea of 10% less sugar.  Does that sound more reasonable?  Would it be easier to maintain than dwelling on the loss of dessert forever?  You can accomplish this goal by finding recipes that are lower in sugar or that substitute alternatives like bananas or honey in place of sugar.  You can also easily do this by eliminating dessert one day a week or by holding off on sweet treats throughout the day, saving your sweet tooth for one dessert a day.  Reducing the size of the treat by 10% is another choice.  I like to cut a dessert in half so I don’t feel deprived, but I still get to treat myself.

    What about using the 10% rule to increase the amount of vegetables in your diet?  Most of us know that veggies are good for our health, but we don’t get enough of them.  Instead of trying to go from one or two vegetables to ten a day, wouldn’t it be easier to add one?  Face it, who is really going to increase their vegetable intake from two to ten a day and stick with it?  We can use the same concept to increase our fruit, fiber and water intake.  This small adjustment of 10% makes a big difference over time.  (Consider how much money you would have in your retirement portfolio if you made 10% on your investments!)  By increasing the positive habits by 10% and reducing the negative ones by 10%, you will notice big changes by the end of the year.

    Choose one thing to change by 10% and see what happens.  After you establish this change, consider another one.  Don’t try everything at once or you will set yourself up for frustration and failure.  All or nothing thinking has never worked in the past so don’t keep doing something that doesn’t work.  This year, make small changes for lasting results. 


    Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, Nebraska is a Certified Life Coach and Licensed Professional Counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  She is the author of a soon to be released book on achieving a balanced life. You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  Check the website or call for more information.

  • Tue, December 06, 2016 7:28 PM | Deleted user

    This time of the year always seems to fly by at breakneck speed!  There is much to do with all of the shopping, gift-wrapping, baking, Christmas cards, decorating, concerts, performances, recitals, parties, get-togethers at work or with friends and family, etc.  The list seems endless and the time seems much too short to get it all done.  I hate to add one more thing to your list but here goes.  What about finding some time to try something new or to do something you have never done before?

    I am sure you are thinking, “That’s all I need! One more thing to add to my already long list!  Is she crazy? I don’t have time for that!”  Hear me out.  We tend to get “wrapped up” in all of the activity and expectations during the holidays.  We work hard to keep family traditions alive.  I love family traditions, too, but what about creating a new tradition, one of doing something different, trying something new, having a new experience?  Let me give you some ideas.

    There is a tradition in my family of cooking a seven-layer casserole on Christmas Eve and eating it when we return from church.  We like this tradition.  We follow dinner with another tradition that I grew up with and that is opening one gift.  We do this while listening to Christmas music and with all of the Christmas decorations out and all of the Christmas lights on to make it more festive.   Then we take a family photo by the Christmas tree.  After this is when we get a little creative.  When my son was little, we read Christmas stories before he went to bed. As he has grown older, we have adapted.  We sometimes play a board game, or we play a game of pool, or we watch a Christmas movie.  Sometimes we get out old family movies and watch them so our son can see either memories of his childhood or of ours.  He gets to see his parents and grandparents much younger and makes a connection to his family and how much he is loved.  He likes this time as both of his grandfathers died when he was young and he gets to see them and hear them, again.  It is a nice time for us to connect as a family.  We choose different movies every year or may choose different board games, but we take the time to enjoy one another as a family.

    Another tradition we have carried over from my childhood is baking cookies and taking them to the neighbors.  My son helps me to roll out sugar cookie dough, cut out cookies, frost and then add sprinkles.  He also helps me to roll peanut butter cookie dough into balls and to “smoosh” Hershey’s kisses into them when they come out of the oven.  He also is the delivery elf and takes the plates of cookies to our neighbors.  There is much room for creativity in baking and decorating cookies.  I make some of the same ones every year, but also change it up a little bit by adding something different.  This year, I am considering trying a new recipe or making something I haven’t made for many years.  I don’t think I have made a peppermint roll since my Dad died nearly 10 years ago so that may be the winner.

              I hope you are getting the idea I am trying to convey.  Keep your traditions, enjoy them, cherish them.  And consider doing something different or starting a new tradition.  Maybe go out to a movie as a family, try a new recipe, eat at a restaurant you have never tried, try a family activity you have never done before like ice skating or building a snowman (if the weather is conducive to it). 

    Here’s an idea.  Try something new that doesn’t have anything to do with the holiday season!  I attended a creativity workshop last weekend and painted.  It was fun to do something creative with a group of other women.  I also did something interesting that I have thought of doing for ages.  I had a reading done with a psychic/medium.  It’s not for everybody, but it was new experience and I am glad I did it.  An acquaintance invited me to attend a service at her synagogue.  I have never been in a synagogue and am looking forward to a new and different experience during the holidays.

    Is there something you have wanted to learn, a class you have wanted to take, something you have wanted to experience but haven’t done it, yet?  What about ending the year by trying something new or different?  It doesn’t have to be on your bucket list to be a fun experience.  It can be anything!  Get creative in your brainstorming.  Take a time out from the holiday rush.  Give yourself something to look forward to.  It will stretch your brain and will give you some untapped energy to keep up with the high speed of the holidays.  Experience something new this holiday season.

    Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, Nebraska is a certified life coach and professional counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  She is the author of a soon to be released book on achieving a balanced life. You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  Check the website or call for more information.

  • Tue, November 01, 2016 10:46 AM | Deleted user

                    As I was pondering what to write about for this month’s blog, I thought about all of the negativity and conflict surrounding the election, all of the horrible acts of violence we see on the news, in movies and video games and all of the unspoken violence that occurs behind closed doors.  I also thought about all of the conflict that arises when families get together for what is supposed to be enjoyable family time during the holidays and I thought of peace. How can we find and maintain peace during stressful times or when we are inundated with violent images, words and behaviors?

                    The first thing I thought of was shutting off all electronic gadgets that bombard our senses with so much violence.  Our brains need a break from all of the negativity and violence.  We have become so accustomed to seeing and hearing it that we have become desensitized to it.  We don’t realize how much those images have been absorbed into our psyche and affect how we feel and how we respond to the world.  We have become less compassionate toward ourselves and others.  We have learned to shut down our feelings because if we allowed ourselves to feel the pain we witness through the media every day, we would have difficulty functioning.  We may find ourselves in tears curled up in a ball with blankets over our heads, withdrawing from the world.  Although we may not go to this extreme, there are many ways that we withdraw.  How about those electronic gadgets that everybody carries with them, constantly looking at them and answering every little beep, buzzer, whistle or musical tone?  Don’t we use them as an escape from the violence and pain?  We may use them to escape, but do we find the peace we are seeking when we are scrolling through emails, social media feeds and watching YouTube videos?

                    The next thing I thought of was the beautiful fall weather, the crisp air, the golds, reds, purples and oranges of the leaves as they turn and let go of the branches to which they have been bound.  We enjoyed a day trip to Indian Cave State Park yesterday.  Although we missed the height of the fall colors, it was still relaxing to get out in the fresh air and see the natural beauty that we forget exists when we are cooped up indoors with all of our indoor comforts and distractions. The crunching leaves underfoot as we hiked up a steep trail, the smell of campfires, watching the squirrels scurry around collecting acorns and nuts for winter, the birds flying overhead, woodpeckers looking for food in dead trees, the river current carrying fallen leaves downstream, and the absence of traffic noise brought a sense of peacefulness and calm to my family.  My son commented, “We need to do this more often!”  He is a “millennial” and is accustomed to being on electronic gadgets, but out there, he got a break.  There is no Wi-Fi and the cellular connections are limited.  Disconnecting from technology and connecting with nature can offer a sense of peace.

                    The last thing I will address is taking time for yourself, to have fun, to have quiet time doing something you enjoy, to get lost in something creative.  In other words, slow everything down, stop doing so much and just “be” in the moment.  I had a professor, Kent Estes, who once said to me, “Kolleen, you are a human being, not a human doing.”  I have remembered this and have used it often as a reminder to myself and to my clients.  We are bombarded with so much information every second of every day that our senses have become overloaded.  In order to find peace, we need to take a step back from everything, take a look inside ourselves to check in and get in touch with who we really are, breathe deeply and remind ourselves that “all is well.”

                    As we prepare to go to the polls next week and we get ready to celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends, take time to relax and connect with your inner peace.  If you haven’t tried meditation, this may be a good time to try it out, even if it is just for three to five minutes a day.  Unplug, literally, from all of the negative images and commentary that steal your peace of mind and spirit.  As one of my childhood favorite church songs says, “Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me.”

          Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, Nebraska is a certified life coach and professional counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  She is the author of a soon to be released book on achieving a balanced life. You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  Check the website or call for more information.

  • Mon, October 03, 2016 4:21 PM | Deleted user

    How do you feel about deadlines?  I mean, how do you really feel when you have a deadline?  Are you delighted?  Do you want to jump for joy and celebrate?  Or is your first reaction one of dread?  Do you resist the deadline and start thinking of all the reasons that you can’t possibly meet that deadline?  If you are like most people, you are more inclined toward the latter.

    What causes us to dig in our heels when a deadline is looming near?  I think it triggers the natural response to rebel against authority that we experience as teens.  Think back to when you were a teenager.  How did you respond to deadlines, especially those regarding homework assignments?  Were you excited to hear you had three weeks to complete a big project or paper?  Or were you dreading it, trying to think of all of the obstacles like “How will I have time to do things with my friends?” or “I can’t possibly get it done because I have other classes, homework and a job. I just don’t have time to do this”?  Yet, somehow, even with all of your objections, I’m guessing you usually found a way to get it done by the deadline.  So how did you do it?  How do you do it today, as an adult?

    I operate under the theory that “Deadlines are lifelines” or “Deadlines are our friends.”  I didn’t always believe this theory and there are times when I still resist the “dreaded deadline.”  But experience has taught me that I am more likely to accomplish a goal when I have a deadline.  Think about this:  what if your boss said, “Hey, I have an important project I need you to do for me.  There’s no big rush so take your time and do it well.  We don’t have a deadline so don’t stress about it.  Just get it to me when you can.”  (Like this would really happen, but just humor me.)  How many of you would rush to work on this project?  He/she told you it was important, but what do you think about it?  “How important can it be if there is no deadline?”  Am I right?  Now what if we take the same scenario but include “I need it before next Tuesday”?  How do you feel about it now?  Do you feel a sense of urgency?  Are you more inclined to get to work on it?

    There is something about the sense of urgency that kicks us into higher gear.  Left to our own devices, we will find other things to occupy our time, even if we are told it is “important.”  Think about a birthday or holiday such as Christmas.  What if you had no date to consider as the “deadline,” would you buy gifts or cards to make it before the deadline?  Or would it be easy to figure, “Oh, well.  I’ll get around to it sometime”? 

    I think most of us are familiar with the saying “A goal is a dream with a deadline.”  To accomplish a goal, we are much more likely to take the steps necessary when we put it in writing and include deadlines for each step along the way with the big deadline at the end.  I recently had my book writing accountability partner challenge me to create a deadline for launching my book.  My first thought was “I can’t set a deadline!  I haven’t written enough, yet.  I don’t even know what all I need to do to have everything in place before I launch it.”  You can see that I was ready to dig in my heels and justify, blame and make excuses in an effort to resist the “dreaded deadline.”  Thankfully, I know this about myself and once I voiced my thoughts, I followed up with “Help me to figure out a timeline for all the steps I need to take so I can come up with a launch date.”  Once I became open to the idea and saw the necessity in doing it, my mindset became one of exploring solutions vs. making excuses.  We mapped it out, I contacted two editors and have a hopeful launch date!  I am so excited to be taking the necessary steps to reach this long-term goal I have had for years!  Would I be able to make it by the launch date if left to my own devices and the idea that “it is important, but I don’t need a launch date, yet. I’ll just keep working on it” or would I continue to drag it out over months and years?  My guess is that it would go on.

    Something in us shifts when we make something a priority by putting a deadline on it.  “Beginning with the end in mind” as Stephen Covey says in his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, is a key to success.  He says, “To begin with the end in mind means to start with a clear understanding of your destination.  It means to know where you’re going so that you better understand where you are now so that the steps you take are always in the right direction.”  It is easy to be busy, but are we spending our time in activities that help to move us closer to our goals?

    I had a roommate in college who set a weight loss goal for herself.  She posted sticky notes all over the kitchen and house with her goal weight.  By making it visible, she kept the goal at the forefront of her mind and achieved it faster than she would have if she had just said her goal was “to lose some weight.”  I agreed to write monthly blogs/articles for the ASTD Newsletter which means that I have a deadline every month.  If I didn’t have the deadline, I may only write 2-3 articles a year instead of 12.

    Take a look at your goal list.  Are they really goals or are they just dreams without deadlines?  How can you stop digging in your heels, holding yourself back and move forward toward achieving a goal or two that have been on your list for a while?  I challenge you to choose a goal and set a deadline.  Then find an accountability partner or coach to hold you to it.  Map out the steps and follow through.  It works like magic!  Instead of a “deadline,” it becomes a “lifeline” leading you to a more fulfilling life.

        Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, NE is a certified life coach and professional counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  Check the website or call for more information.

  • Thu, September 01, 2016 3:28 PM | Deleted user

    Last night at bedtime, as I was preparing all of my stuff to take to work in the morning, I couldn’t find my van keys.  I cleaned out my purse, checked jacket pockets, looked in all of the usual places and still couldn’t find them.  I decided, as a last resort, to go into the garage and check my vehicle.  Lo and behold, there they were, in the ignition!  I had unloaded the van after shopping on Saturday, then realized I needed to write down my mileage so I put the keys back in and turned them enough to see the mileage.  Unfortunately, I got sidetracked and my van is old so it doesn’t make all of the usual warning noises to let you know when you have left keys in the ignition.  I spent the weekend cleaning and canning apple butter, so I had no need to go out to the vehicle, until last night when I couldn’t find my keys. 

    You know what happened.  The battery was run down to nothing and there was no chance of starting it.  My husband was already in bed, but got up and checked it out.  He hooked up a battery charger and found there was almost no charge left in the battery.  He didn’t want to leave it hooked up overnight with no supervision so we unplugged it and decided to get up early to plug it back in and hope that there would be enough time to charge it before work or I would have to take him to work and keep his vehicle.  Thankfully, he was able to give it enough juice to start it and I was able to take it to work and he was able to take his vehicle.  But it was scary and anxiety-producing until we knew we could get it running.

    Has this ever happened to you?  Have you emptied your internal battery to the point of having no juice left?  Have you tried starting yourself on an empty battery?  Did you wonder why you couldn’t get it going?  Just as I inadvertently drained my van battery, we can drain ourselves and not realize it until it is too late and we don’t have any charge left.  We had to plug in a battery charger and hook it up to the van battery to give it enough juice to get it started.  What do you have to do to recharge your batteries?

    We just returned from a 10 day vacation to a cabin in Minnesota with friends, the Great Lakes, Canada, Niagara Falls and a few other sites along the way.  Although I was sick most of the vacation, it was wonderful to get out, see some new scenery, touch base with friends, enjoy nature and spend time with my family.  I came back feeling better and ready to go back to work.  I have more energy, gained a new perspective, got some rest, had some new experiences and am re-charged!  

    Before vacation, my batteries were running low which is why I got sick.  I had been busy with work, workshops, a family reunion, a wedding, several funerals and trying to catch up on home projects and was not taking time to take good care of myself.  Too many hours of work, stretching well into the night combined with early mornings and non-stop activity during the day were draining the juice from my batteries without my realizing it, just as the key left in the ignition had drained the juice from my van battery.  I’m sure that we both looked okay on the outside, but the inner workings were not keeping up with appearances.  Upon closer inspection, others may have realized that we were both having our energy slowly drained and we needed to stop the energy drains and get plugged into a power source that could replenish us!

    What is draining your energy?  How can you stop the energy drains?  What energy source can you plug into to recharge?  I encourage you to take some well-deserved time to charge your batteries.  If you aren’t sure what charges you up, take some time to consider when you feel relaxed, calm, excited, happy, content, creative, focused or loving.  Are there activities that you don’t have time for because you are caught up in the busy-ness of life?  What is an activity that you love to do but haven’t done for a while?  Schedule time to do it!  Is there a person that you love spending time with that you haven’t spoken to or haven’t seen recently?  Contact that person and schedule time to talk or get together!  Is there an activity that you have wanted to try but haven’t gathered the information it would take to do it?  Gather the information and try something new!  Is there something that relaxes or calms you but you rarely take the time to do it because “it’s not a good time” or “I will get back to that someday”?  Why wait any longer?  Take time for yourself!  When you do these things, you are putting yourself on the battery charger before you are depleted and can’t start.  Don’t try to run your life on a dead battery.  Take time to re-charge your batteries and bring energy back into your life!

        Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, NE is a certified life coach and professional counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  Check the website or call for more information.

  • Mon, August 01, 2016 9:28 AM | Deleted user

    “When opportunity knocks, open the door.”

    How many times has opportunity knocked on your door and you didn’t answer?  Opportunities arise every day.  We just need to be aware of them and make the decision to take them or live with the consequences of missing them.

    We can all look back at points in our lives when we had opportunities to try something new, to have a unique experience, to learn or to grow.  Whenever I miss an opportunity, I feel disappointed.  I wonder how the opportunity, if taken, would have impacted my life or given a result I was seeking.  I also ponder about opportunities I have taken, and I wonder how my life would have been impacted if I hadn’t seized those opportunities. 

    One of the first opportunities I had was choosing which scholarships to accept and which college to attend.  I was offered a number of scholarships to various colleges and it came down to accepting a Regents Scholarship to the University of Nebraska at Lincoln or accepting a 4 year President’s Scholarship to Kearney State College.  Both were excellent opportunities, but I couldn’t choose both.  I took the opportunity that felt right to me and I have no regrets.

    Another big opportunity came when I was offered my first job out of college.  I had the opportunity to teach in California without ever having seen the school.  I took the opportunity which led to much personal and professional growth.  If I hadn’t taken the opportunity, I may have always wondered what would have happened if I had.

    I am sure I have missed opportunities in my life, but I try to be aware of the ones that come my way that offer me personal or professional growth.  I have a recent example of someone I know who missed a big opportunity to sell a commercial property in a small town.  He had two interested buyers, but he didn’t act on the interest while it was hot and he missed the opportunity to sell it.  It may be years before he has another opportunity.

    Another example is all of the job opportunities available in Lincoln right now.  I see “help wanted” signs posted in many stores and restaurants.  I know of a number of people who talk about being interested in finding a job, but when it comes down to applying for these job openings, they have many excuses as to why they aren’t getting it done.  Some complain that they haven’t had the time to apply, but they have the time to be on Facebook, play video games and hang out with friends.  Some simply don’t want to do the work that is available saying things like “I don’t want to work in a restaurant.”  It’s a shame they are missing out on excellent opportunities to be employed, earn money, reduce financial stress, have the opportunity for benefits, meet new people, learn new skills, etc.  There is a formula to determine the missed financial opportunity:  Take the hourly wage (W) and multiply by the number of hours (H) per day they could be working and multiply that number by every day (D) that passes that they are not working and that equals the dollar amount of that missed opportunity (MO).  (W x H x D = $MO)  For example, if they could be earning minimum wage this is how it might look:  $9 per hour x 8 hours per day x 40 days without work = $2880 of missed opportunity. 

    What are the opportunities you have every day that are available to you in one of these areas:  personal, financial, spiritual, professional, health or relationships?  Are you taking or missing the opportunities that come knocking on your door?  Are you missing out on financial opportunities because you aren’t willing to take a job that isn’t your dream job because you want to hold out for the one that pays more and seems more ideal?  Have you considered the financial hit you are taking with each day that you don’t take the less than perfect job?  What about earning money while you continue to search for the ideal job? 

    Are you missing out on an opportunity to create, grow or improve a relationship in your life?  What about time for personal growth?  Are you missing an opportunity to learn something new, try something you have never tried or do something creative?  Is there an opportunity to improve your health that you haven’t taken?  Every day is full of opportunities!!  “When opportunity knocks, open the door!”

      Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, NE is a certified life coach and professional counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  Check the website or call for more information.

  • Tue, July 05, 2016 4:42 PM | Deleted user

    Yesterday was the 4th of July and I enjoyed seeing all of the flags decorating the neighborhood.  The holidays that occur from May to September (Memorial Day, Flag Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day) use patriotism or service as their theme.  We thank our military people for their service to our country.  This caused me to think about service and how we serve one another and our communities.

    As our son was growing up, I spent many hours volunteering at his schools and with his activities.  I was the room mother when he was in elementary school and helped in the classrooms as well as field trips and special activities.  We helped with the track club (Dad raked the long jump pit and Mom provided snacks and drinks) and we provided spaghetti feeds for the high school cross country team.  We carpooled for many families who had trouble getting kids to or from school or activities.  The list is much longer, but my point is that when you are raising children, you often find yourself in service of others, not only your children, but other people’s children, teachers, coaches, etc.  What happens when the children grow up?  Who do you serve and how?  If you don’t have children, you may already have found ways to serve others.  If you haven’t volunteered, you may consider it.

    Our son is a young adult and recently moved out on his own.  I now feel like I have more time to volunteer for things I am interested in doing.  I recently adopted a section of the Mopac bike trail behind our office building to pick up trash.  It is something I have considered doing with our son since he was little.  I never felt like we had the time and we didn’t have easy access to the bike trail from our home.  It is convenient for me now, as I walk the trail at least once a week and I am at our office building nearly every day.

    We just hosted my family reunion last week.  We had been asked to do it in the past, but I wanted to wait until our son graduated from high school so I would be sure to have the time to devote to doing it well.  It was quite a bit of work in the organizing, communication, shopping and food preparation but it was well worth it and the family was appreciative of our service to them.

    The other day, I spent a lot of time assisting my brother in setting up an online account to advertise a commercial property for sale.  That same day, I spent time helping my husband and other brother to find and purchase season football tickets.  These acts of service were done out of love and I would gladly do them again.

    I am a member of a number of organizations and was just installed as an officer in my Toastmasters club again after taking a number of years off in that capacity.  Others took over when I was otherwise engaged so I figured it is time for me to lift the burden of others, again.  I also write this monthly blog for ATD as another act of service. 

    Service to others does not have to be on a grand scale, but can be on a small scale by helping one person or a few people.  There are many organizations who would love to have volunteers as they can’t operate without the help.  Are you involved in organizations, such as ATD, that could benefit from your help? Consider what your interests are, who could benefit from your help, the time you have available and the location.  Choose something that you would enjoy supporting.  You may choose to do it one time or you may choose an ongoing commitment.  Do you like to help animals?  Consider the animal shelter, the Cat House, or a rescue organization.  Do you prefer to work alone in your service?  What about shelving books or preparing them for mailing by volunteering at the library?  If you don’t have a lot of time but would prefer to help once a year, what about helping with a race like the Lincoln Marathon?  Do you want more of a regularly scheduled act of service?  Soup kitchens and the People’s City Mission are always in need of volunteers.  Do you like talking with the elderly?  What about setting aside time to visit someone in a nursing home?  They love to have visitors as many of them don’t have family nearby.  Think about how you can give back to the world through service to others.  I challenge you to think of something you can do and to take action to serve others this month.  You will be glad you did.

    Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, NE is a certified life coach and professional counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  Check the website or call for more information.

  • Wed, June 01, 2016 1:58 PM | Deleted user

    How many times have we heard these words, “Let it go”?  What does it mean to you?  In the Disney movie, “Frozen,” Ana sings the song “Let It Go” to release the magic she has kept pent up inside, regardless of the consequences.  In the Harry Potter books, Hermione is often telling Harry and Ron to let it go or ignore it when Draco Malfoy is trying to provoke them into a fight.  In the Bible, Jesus’ version of letting go is “turn the other cheek” and at the end of his life, when he ultimately “lets go” by turning over his spirit after asking God to forgive those who tortured him.

    When I think of letting go, I think of letting go of the little things that irritate me so I can be free of anger, bitterness, resentment, and any other negative feelings I may have in a given situation.  I also think of the saying in Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12 Step programs, “Let Go and Let God” meaning to let go of controlling people, places, things and situations and to let God take care of whatever it is you are trying to control.

    “Letting go” has significant meaning to a parent throughout the various stages of their child’s life.  When they are learning to walk, we must let go of their fingers and let them fall on their bottoms so they can learn to walk, finding balance on their own without leaning on their parents.  When they reach preschool, parents must let them go again, entrusting them to the care of other adults.  Kindergarten is another big step in letting go.  This stage is the beginning of 13 years of education, growing, developing, making friends, learning how to be independent and parents learning how to let them become who they are meant to be.  The culmination of this process is high school graduation which is another stepping stone toward independence and adulthood.  This “letting go” is a big one as it marks the beginning of the end of parenting for the first 18 years of their child’s life.  Many parents watch their children go on to college, sometimes moving far away from home.  As I prepare to “let go” of my son as he moves out on his own, I am realizing that even though we have prepared him for this his whole life, it marks an important stage in our growth and development as parents.  In addition to letting go of the time, energy and responsibilities of raising my son to adulthood, it also causes me to think of other things I need to let go of in my life.

    I am letting go of some of the aspects of my business that I have always done myself.  I don’t enjoy data entry, so I have decided to “let it go” and am hiring someone who enjoys that type of work and is probably much more efficient at it than I am.  I have done my own website for the past seven years, but have decided to let that go, as well.  I have hired somebody to upgrade my website and to make it do all the things I want it to do, but more efficiently and easily.  I will maintain it, but I am hopeful that it will be easier to maintain after having somebody else who knows what they are doing create it and set it up for me.  I am letting go of being a provider for certain insurance companies as I have decided that the cost of time, energy, work and effort is greater than the benefit of the paycheck I receive from them.

    In my personal life, I have been letting go of extra weight by being more mindful of my eating and by exercising daily.  As I let go of the physical weight, I feel lighter and am ready and willing to let go of other things that weigh me down.  I am letting go of clothes that don’t fit me, towels that are worn out and are ready to be used for cleaning, extra dishes that take up too much space in my cupboards and older furniture that my son can use in his new place.  I am letting go of petty things that annoy me and am always working on letting go of perfectionism.

     I am curious as to what other people are ready and willing to let go of in their lives.  Are there people, places, things, or situations that you are in need of “letting go”?  As we move into the summer months, which are a time of rest and relaxation, how about letting go of some of the stress, work, and stuff that overwhelms our lives?  Consider what you can let go of and set yourself free.

    Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, NE is a certified life coach and professional counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  Check the website or call for more information.

  • Sat, April 30, 2016 7:29 PM | Deleted user

    May is here and brings with it 3 holidays:  May Day, Mother’s Day and Memorial Day.  May is traditionally a busy month as it is the end of the school year which means graduation ceremonies, too.  This year, I want to address the 3 M holidays that occur in May.

    May Day is a holiday which dates back to mating rituals and the celebration of fertility as a pagan holiday.  We have used May Day to celebrate spring by dropping May baskets with candy or flowers at somebody’s door, ringing the doorbell and running, hoping for the friend to chase you.  Kids love this holiday tradition, although it isn’t celebrated as much as it was in past generations.  Most children who do celebrate it don’t realize that this was supposed to be done anonymously and as a gesture to show romantic interest in the person for whom the basket was given.  It has also become a tradition to celebrate Mary, the mother of Jesus, in the Roman Catholic Church.  This leads us into our second May holiday, Mother’s Day.

    According to this website, http://www.whsv.com/seasonal/misc/42915822.html

    Mother's Day in US: Here in the United States Mother's Day is a national holiday and is celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm. On this day people reflect on the importance of mothers in their life and thank them for their unconditional love and support. Mother's Day is celebrated in USA in a big way and has been commercialized to a great extent. It is considered as the next big day after Christmas and Valentine’s Day. Phone lines record a heavy traffic and card sales reaches its peak and restaurants are filled to their maximum capacity. Traditions for this day generally include things like breakfast in the bed, giving flowers, cards or gifts, and treating them to a meal.

    The 3rd M holiday in May is Memorial Day. Here is the background I found according to a history website, http://www.usmemorialday.org/?page_id=2

    “Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in service of the United States of America. . . .Memorial Day was borne out of the Civil War and a desire to honor our dead. It was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his General Order No. 11. “The 30th of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land,” he proclaimed. The date of Decoration Day, as he called it, was chosen because it wasn’t the anniversary of any particular battle.”

    As I consider these 3 M May Holidays, I see a flow or a theme.  May Day marks the beginning of spring, fertility, life. Mother’s Day celebrates women who have brought new life into this world (or whom have adopted children) and have given much love and support to raising and caring for their offspring.  We remember our mothers and thank them for the gift of life and all their sacrifices.  Memorial Day is a time to remember those who have given their lives in service to our country and its citizens.  These 3 holidays represent the cycle of life from the beginning to the end of life. 

    I also find it interesting that flowers play a primary role in all of these holidays as well as in the saying that “April showers bring May flowers.”  Flowers represent life, love, beauty, nature and peace.

    As you “spring” into May, consider these holidays and how they represent life.  How do you celebrate these stages of life?  Do you pay attention to all that comes to life in May?  Is there a mother in your life that you would like to thank or show appreciation for all she has given to you?  Are there people in your family or community that have given the ultimate sacrifice in service that you would like to acknowledge?  You May want to spring for some flowers to show your love and appreciation this month.

    Kolleen Meyer-Krikac, owner of Balanced Life and Wilshire Business Suites, located in Lincoln, NE is a certified life coach and professional counselor in private practice.  She facilitates workshops, is a public speaker and enjoys helping people to “Dream, Plan, Achieve” the life they have always wanted.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), Linked In, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  She is offering a Spring Cleaning Small Coaching Group in May.  Check the website or call for more information.

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