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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.

 

  • Fri, April 01, 2016 8:03 PM | Deleted user

    “April Fools!” is often heard from children who have tried to trick their parents or siblings on April Fools’ Day. So how did this tradition of tricking people come about?  This is what www.history.com says about April Fools’ Day:

    On this day in 1700, English pranksters begin popularizing the annual tradition of April Fools’ Day by playing practical jokes on each other.

    Although the day, also called All Fools’ Day, has been celebrated for several centuries by different cultures, its exact origins remain a mystery. Some historians speculate that April Fools’ Day dates back to 1582, when France switched from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar, as called for by the Council of Trent in 1563. People who were slow to get the news or failed to recognize that the start of the new year had moved to January 1 and continued to celebrate it during the last week of March through April 1 became the butt of jokes and hoaxes. These included having paper fish placed on their backs and being referred to as “poisson d’avril” (April fish), said to symbolize a young, easily caught fish and a gullible person.

    Historians have also linked April Fools’ Day to ancient festivals such as Hilaria, which was celebrated in Rome at the end of March and involved people dressing up in disguises. There’s also speculation that April Fools’ Day was tied to the vernal equinox, or first day of spring in the Northern Hemisphere, when Mother Nature fooled people with changing, unpredictable weather.

    April Fools’ Day spread throughout Britain during the 18th century. In Scotland, the tradition became a two-day event, starting with “hunting the gowk,” in which people were sent on phony errands (gowk is a word for cuckoo bird, a symbol for fool) and followed by Tailie Day, which involved pranks played on people’s derrieres, such as pinning fake tails or “kick me” signs on them.

    In modern times, people have gone to great lengths to create elaborate April Fools’ Day hoaxes.

    Although we can laugh at a good prank on April Fools’ Day, how many of us enjoy people “tricking” us or “making a fool” out of us?  Most people don’t like being tricked or being the butt of somebody’s joke.  We feel deceived, hurt, angry, disrespected, duped.   We know how hurtful it can be to be on the receiving end of a prank, but do we consider how others may feel if we are on the other side, taking advantage of their gullibility?  Do we ever intentionally trick others into thinking that we are something we are not?  Do you know people who present themselves in one way, but as you get to know them, you realize it is a hoax and they are not who they appear to be?

    In our professional lives, we want to deal with honest people in an honest way.  We want to trust the people we do business with just as our clients want to trust us.  What happens when a client feels duped by the promises of a business or person?  Do they go out and recommend others to do business with the person they felt took advantage of them?  Or do they pull back the curtain and expose it on social media and to their friends and colleagues?  We must always be conscious of our integrity and our intentions.  Is it worth an extra buck to tell a potential client a half-truth to get their business?  Or would it be better for your conscience and your bottom line to refer them to another business if you can’t meet their needs?

    Most people feel somewhat insecure in some area of their lives and they fear somebody exposing them, thereby making them appear a fool.  Out of this fear, sometimes people overcompensate and overpromise what they can deliver.  Although it isn’t intentional dishonesty, it has the same effect.  I challenge you to consider your interactions in your personal and professional life.  Are you intentionally or unintentionally making a fool out of somebody else?  Are you afraid that others will expose you as a fool?  Let’s call an end to this “foolishness”!  Be yourself and don’t hide behind a jester’s mask!  Offer others the best of what you have to offer.  Don’t oversell or undersell what you have, but evaluate it honestly.  Your clients won’t be fooled by your competition, but will see that what you have to offer is genuine, if you are genuine.  Let’s leave the pranks and hoaxes where they belong, on April Fools’ Day.

    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, a Private Practice Workshop and Ethical Issues in Therapy Workshops in April.  Check the website or call for more information.


  • Tue, March 01, 2016 10:13 PM | Deleted user

    How often do you consider your strengths, what they are, how you can use them and how you feel about them?  On the other hand, how would you respond if I asked you about your weaknesses?  My guess is that you would respond much more readily to the question about weaknesses because that is how we are trained.  From a very young age, we are taught to focus on our weaknesses and to work to improve them.  Rarely are we told to focus on our strengths.  When asked about strengths, people are often stumped. Not only do they not know what their strengths are, but they are surprised that anybody would be interested in them.

    I have a stack of books written about strengths, most of them are through the Gallup Organization. You may have heard of some of these titles:  First, Break All the Rules by Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman; Now, Discover Your Strengths by Marcus Buckingham and Donald O. Clifton, Ph.D.; Go Put Your Strengths to Work by Marcus Buckingham; StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Tom Rath; and Soar with Your Strengths by Donald O. Clifton and Paula Nelson.  The last title is an audiobook I have been listening to when I drive and was the first book out (1993) in this list.  This book has been on my mind and is a reminder that we focus too much time and energy on what we don’t do well vs. on what we do well.

    At the beginning of the book, there is a story about a variety of animals, all with different skills, abilities and things they enjoy doing (strengths) who get together and decide to start a school so they can all learn from one another.  One of the examples is of a rabbit who enjoys his first day of school because he got to run and hop, both are things he loves and are strengths.  When it came time for him to take a swimming class, he nearly drowned and decided he hated school because this was forcing him to focus on a weakness.  The teachers had a meeting about him and wanted him to put in extra time practicing.  If he didn’t do better, he would fail the class and would have to take it again.  He ran into the same problem with the flying class.  When he had his running and hopping class again, he loved it and excelled!  He was made for it as it played to his strengths!  The other animals had similar experiences – being expected to do something as well as another animal who was designed differently and had different strengths.

    How much time have we spent trying to fly when no amount of remediation, self-discipline, scolding, shaming and yelling were going to cause us to sprout wings and be able to fly as perfectly as a bird?  What if the world allowed us to use our strengths to excel instead of expecting us to improve our weaknesses?  How would we experience life differently?  Would we love our work instead of feeling like it is “a grind” that saps our energy and takes our joy?  How often have we known somebody who excelled at their job so much that they were promoted out of it, into a position of management where they were unhappy and not at all suited to it?  No matter how much training they were given, they were a rabbit who was expected to sprout wings and fly.  They were unhappy, their talents were not being used and they were told that this is how successful people are rewarded!

    What if this same person was rewarded for excelling in his or her position and allowed to run their race using their strengths?  What if they could focus on what they love?  Can you imagine how much happier and more content they would be, not to mention how much more productive?

    Consider your strengths now.  What do you love to do so much that you can lose yourself in it and have no concept of time?  When you are doing this, you are “in the zone” and want to continue doing it.  You feel energized when you do it and know that you do it well!  Is there any place in your life that you get to use this talent or strength?  If not, can you think of a situation in which you could use your talent? 

    If you are having difficulty thinking of your strengths or talents, ask somebody who knows you well.  They may offer you some insight that is useful.  Look back over your life and consider the activities, hobbies, work, classes, etc. that you enjoyed.  Also consider taking the StrengthsFinder 2.0 online questionnaire to discover your top 5 themes.  If you buy the book, you will get a code to use.  If not, you can buy a code online.  When you discover your strengths, find a way to incorporate them in your work and your personal life.  Notice how you feel when you do this.  You may rediscover a part of yourself that you have been missing.  If you are a flyer, fly!  If you are a swimmer, swim!  If you are a runner and hopper, run and hop!  Stop wasting valuable time focusing on the things you don’t love and don’t do well!  Discover your strengths and soar!

    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 “Dream, Plan, Achieve in 2016” Small Group in March, a Spring Cleaning Small Coaching Group in March, a Private Practice Workshop in March and Ethical Issues in Therapy Workshops in April.  Check the website or call for more information.


  • Thu, February 04, 2016 8:54 AM | Deleted user

    Do you remember how exciting it was, as a kid, to watch the school closings when there was a snowstorm predicted?  I remember staying up for the ten o’clock weather report and watching the school closings listed in alphabetical order, anxiously waiting to see if our school was on the list.  If we didn’t see it, we would go to bed disappointed and would get up early in the morning to watch the school closings, again.  When our school showed up on the list, we would hoot and holler, jump around and celebrate!  We were free to have fun all day without the encumbrance of school.  We looked forward to staying in our pajamas, watching TV shows like “The Price is Right” and playing in the snow.  We made snowmen, snow forts, had snowball fights, climbed the giant mountains of snow made by the snow plows and went sledding.  Then we would go inside and enjoy hot chocolate with marshmallows and play board games. It was glorious!

                    The past 2 days have been snow days for LPS students.  I have also had snow days as my clients changed their appointments to avoid traveling on the bad roads.  I enjoyed staying in my pajamas late on the first day and not getting ready for work.  I spent a lot of time cooking which I enjoy doing on cold days.  I read a book, did some writing, and did some cleaning in my home office, but the best thing I did was watch home movies from last year’s vacation to Disneyworld and Universal Studios with my son.  We were able to relive the fun while spending time together. 

                    When was the last time you had a snow day?  Even if you can’t take time off work, could you carve out some time in the evening or on the weekend to relax and do some things you don’t normally take time to do?  A snow day is a free day – a chance to do something different from the normal schedule.  Whether you get outside and play in the snow, or stay inside to keep warm, a snow day can be an opportunity to take some time for yourself or to enjoy relationships with loved ones.  What would you do if you took a snow day?  Would you read a book, watch a movie, have some play time with a child or enjoy a hobby?

                    I challenge you to take a snow day before spring arrives!  Maybe you will take a day off work, or maybe you will schedule it on a weekend.  Whatever you do, celebrate the freedom that comes with a snow day – freedom from your routine, freedom from work.  Enjoy doing something fun, something you haven’t done for a while.  Build a snowman, play a board game, have some hot chocolate and enjoy the fun of a snow day!

    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 “Dream, Plan, Achieve in 2016” Small Group soon.  Check the website or call for more information.


  • Tue, January 05, 2016 10:58 PM | Deleted user

    Last year, I addressed New Year’s Resolutions.  This year, we are going to take a look back at our accomplishments before we address the New Year.

    Quite often, we forget to celebrate our accomplishments.  We just move on to the next goal without ever contemplating our success and what it took for us to get there.  Take some time right now.  What were your goals for last year?  Did you write them down?  Take a look at your list.  How many goals or tasks are on that list?  Did you check them off as you achieved them?  If not, do it now.  If you did not have a goal list, take a few minutes to write down your “Top 10 Accomplishments” of the past year.  Take a minute, close your eyes.  Contemplate what you have done.  Feel the sense of accomplishment.  Be amazed with yourself!  Did you realize how much you achieved?  Are you surprised?  Bask in it!  You are amazing!  There is no point in beating yourself up over what you did not accomplish.  It is better to focus on your successes!  This will give you impetus and motivation to continue on your upward trajectory.  Success leads to more success.

    Now think about what you hope to achieve this year.  If you have found the goal list useful, by all means, do it again.  Just be sure to set your goals keeping in mind what is achievable and reasonable.  If you want to try something different, consider choosing a theme for the year.  My friend, Peigi, told me of this idea that she heard about and tried.  This is the idea.  Instead of creating goals for the year, you choose a theme that will help you to create the year that you want.  Everything you do is tied to this theme – it’s a way to simplify your goal-setting!  For example, I have chosen the theme of “completion” and will set up my goals around this theme.  I will complete the writing of my book.  I will complete my weight loss goal.  I will complete a variety of projects that have been on the back burner.  When I begin a task, I will see it through to completion.  With everything I begin, I will have a plan for completion.  Does this make sense?  Choose a theme that emphasizes what you want this year.  Maybe you will choose a theme of health or fitness, time management, fun, learning, experiencing the moment, creativity, relationships or love.  The ideas are endless!  Choose a theme and let it become your mantra for the year, one day, one hour, one minute at a time.  See how your life transforms!  Make 2016 the year you “Dream, Plan, Achieve” your way to success!

      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 “Dream, Plan, Achieve in 2016” Small Group in January.  Check the website or call for more information.


  • Tue, December 01, 2015 9:03 PM | Deleted user

    As I was considering what to write for this blog, I decided to share an article I wrote for the EntrepreNews newsletter in November of 2010.  It can also be found on my website.  Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

    From Stressful to (Nearly) Stress-free Holidays

    “’Tis the season to be jolly” or is it the season for “Bah, humbug!”?  There is no doubt that holidays can be stressful.  Using a few ideas can help to reduce holiday stress and bring the “jolly” back.

    The first thing to do is to “light”-en up!  Look at your expectations.  Are they realistic?  Or are you looking for the picture-perfect image you have seen portrayed in ads and in “made for television movies”?  Remember, these things are made to play on your emotions and to get you to spend money with a particular company with the idea that their product will bring you happiness!  See these images for what they are and let go of your expectations to duplicate them.  Realize that real holidays are made with real people, not actors or models that you can position where you want to create a perfect picture.  Accept imperfection and take a picture anyway.

    Next, do you really have to spend a lot of money to enjoy the holidays?  Invest time with your loved ones instead of money.  People tend to feel guilty about what they did or didn’t do earlier in the year so they try to make it up to others during the holidays by spending money on them.  This will not accomplish the goal of eliminating the guilt, but it will add more stress and more guilt when the VISA bill arrives.

    Finally, take time to take good care of yourself.  People tend to think they don’t have time for self-care during the holidays so they stop their exercise programs, stop meeting with friends, and stop taking time to unwind because there is so much to do.  You will find that you  will have more energy to accomplish all that you want to during the holidays if you take time to exercise, connect with others and relax.  Aahh…maybe it is a season to be jolly…

    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.  Balanced Life offers individual life coaching, small group coaching, speaking and seminars on topics such as:  time management, organizational skills, maintaining energy & eliminating drains, achieving balance, self-care, and overcoming procrastination.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), LinkedIn, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  She is writing a book on creating a balanced life and will be offering workshops on this topic, soon.  Check the website or call for more information.


  • Sun, November 01, 2015 5:59 PM | Deleted user

    Do you watch Disney movies?  Have you seen “The Little Mermaid”?  Do you remember the moment when she realized she had no voice and how precious it was?  She spent the rest of the movie trying to communicate without a voice, learning how to communicate in different ways, all the while appreciating the gift she had lost.

    I woke up this morning without my voice and with a terrible sore throat that has worsened over the past several days.  On these days, I am like Ariel, trying to find different ways to communicate, not always successfully and often with much effort.  It causes me to be grateful for my voice, even the gravelly one that fades in and out.  I am grateful for the gift of speaking my mind in a free country and within my family.  Not everyone feels free to speak up and use their voice.

    Maybe you are one of those people who has given up your voice, your gift to speak up for what is right and for what you need.  Maybe you live in fear of retribution if you speak up.  Maybe you settle for a life that is less than what you desire because you can’t find your voice to change it.  Maybe you work in a situation that has taught you to “clam up” or you will have to pay the price of getting written up or losing your job, which means losing a paycheck.  Maybe you are in a relationship where somebody else does all the talking and you aren’t allowed to have a voice or to express yourself.

    What would it take for you to find your voice?  Malala Yousafzai is an 18 year old Pakistani girl and at the age of 17, she became the youngest ever Nobel Peace Prize winner.  She is an activist for female education and human rights in Pakistan where the Taliban had banned girls from attending school.  At the age of 11-12, she wrote a blog for the BBC about the Taliban occupation and her views on educating girls. In 2012, in an effort to stifle her voice, she was shot in the head as she boarded her school bus.  This attempt to “shut her up” had the exact opposite effect than what the Taliban had hoped.  She became a voice for all children worldwide who are being deprived of an education.  If a little girl can be this courageous, can you find some courage to speak up?

    With the holidays coming, many people experience laryngitis around their families.  They are afraid to be themselves and to speak up because they may “rock the boat” if they act like the adults they have become instead of the children they once were.  Is it any wonder that so many people only tolerate the holidays vs. enjoying them?  Speaking up and finding your voice doesn’t mean you have to start a family feud, but rather to be open enough to be yourself and to allow others to see you as an adult instead of filling a childhood role.  It’s not always easy to go home without feeling like a child, but if you plan ahead for possible attempts to “steal your voice,” you can protect and share your beautiful gift.  Be thankful you have a voice and can use it in a free country.

      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.  Balanced Life offers individual life coaching, small group coaching, speaking and seminars on topics such as:  time management, organizational skills, maintaining energy & eliminating drains, achieving balance, self-care, and overcoming procrastination.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), LinkedIn, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  She is writing a book on creating a balanced life and will be offering workshops on this topic, soon.  She is offering a presentation on “Creating a Nearly Stress-Free Holiday Season” free of charge on November 19, 2015.  Seating is limited.  Check the website or call for more information.


  • Wed, September 30, 2015 11:11 PM | Deleted user

    Did you happen to observe the Super Blood Moon the other night?  If you didn’t see it, you missed one of the amazing things in our universe that we can witness without a telescope.  www.timeanddate.com says, “The full moon of September 27/28 is a Supermoon – the moon will be closest to the Earth, or at its perigee, as it turns into a full Moon.  A rising Super Full Moon can look larger and brighter to spectators on Earth.  Total eclipses of Super Full Moons are rare.  According to NASA, they have only occurred 5 times in the 1900’s – in 1910, 1928, 1946, 1964 and 1982.”  We won’t see another one until October 8, 2033!  They also say “Blood Moon is sometimes used to describe a Total Lunar Eclipse.  When the Earth casts its shadow on a Full Moon and eclipses it, the Moon may get a red glow.”

    I am fascinated with the sky and space!  It is awe-inspiring to me!  Seeing photographs of Earth from space can move me in ways that words can’t describe.  I can’t imagine how the astronauts must feel when they see the earth and moon from space!

    I am also in awe of the amazing new photographs of Mars!  Water was found on Mars!!  Wow!!  This opens up the possibilities of humans camping out on another planet!  This is the stuff that science-fiction is made of, but may now may not be fiction at all.  Think of the technology that has allowed us to see such detail in photographs!  Wow!  This is a far cry from our childhood Kodak flash camera!

    As we age, it is more difficult for us to find things to cause us to feel a sense of wonder and awe.  We tend to feel like we “have been there, done that” and aren’t easily impressed anymore.  If you watch small children, including babies, you will see wonder in their eyes and facial expressions as everything is new and exciting to them.  How can we regain these feelings? 

    I suggest we learn from the children in our lives.  Get down on their level and see the world as they see it.  Have you ever realized how different things look when you are a baby and are unable to stand up?  What about the perspective of one who is 2 feet tall?  Try it!  You may experience the world in a new way.  Look at the things they see at that level.  Look at the bugs, the grass, the carpet, the furniture, pets, toys, etc.  Take it all in!  After doing this for a while, raise yourself up a little bit and look at the world, again.  How does your perspective change at this height?  What do you see at this level?  Do you feel like you are in a land of giants?  Imagine how large things would be in your world if the ratios were the same for adults as they are for children.  It is strange to think of living in a land of giants where we are the size of babies or toddlers!

    Yet, this is the way I feel when I look into space.  We are but tiny specks in this infinite universe.  It puts all of our concerns and problems into perspective.  They don’t seem so big and important when you are looking at the stars, moon and planets.  Seeing things from this angle can help reduce anxiety and worry.

    Getting out in nature can bring up feelings of wonder and awe.  We are indoors so much, we forget how much better we feel when we go outside and experience nature.  Try it!  Go outside.  Feel the cool, crisp fall air, smell the fall flowers, and appreciate the fall colors that will be popping out soon.  Ask questions as children do (i.e. “Why do the leaves turn colors?  Why are some leaves red, some yellow, some orange and some purple?  Why do the seasons change?  What causes the cooler temperatures in the fall?”).  Seek out the answers!  Experience the wonders of our world and our universe this fall!  Notice how your perspective and attitude change.  It really is a wonderful world!

      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.  Balanced Life offers individual life coaching, small group coaching, speaking and seminars on topics such as:  time management, organizational skills, maintaining energy & eliminating drains, achieving balance, self-care, and overcoming procrastination.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), LinkedIn, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  She is writing a book on creating a balanced life and will be offering workshops on this topic, soon.  Check the website or call for more information.


  • Mon, August 31, 2015 9:29 PM | Deleted user

    Labor Day is fast approaching so I looked up a little information about the holiday.  I found this at www.holidayinsights.com/other/labor.htm

    "Date when celebrated: Always the first Monday in September

    Dedicated in honor of the worker, it is also appropriately called the "workingman's holiday." The holiday is dedicated to you in respect and appreciation for the work you do in or outside of the home, union or non-union, big company, small companies, or government. As long as you work somewhere at something, this holiday is for you!

    The first Labor Day was celebrated in New York City on September 5, 1882 and was started by the Central Labor Union in New York City. In 1884, it was moved to the first Monday in September where it is celebrated today. Labor Day quickly became popular and one state after another voted it as a holiday. On June 28, 1894, the U.S. congress voted it a national holiday.

    Labor Day is also viewed as the official end of summer. While the Fall Equinox is still a couple of weeks away, kids go back to school and summer vacations are over.

    Labor Day tradition: This day is celebrated with a day off and union sponsored parades. Many people celebrate this weekend with one last picnic. It is also the date that many people close up the pool, and put away the boats."


    So what are you doing to take a break from “laboring” this holiday weekend?  We, as Americans, tend to work more days and hours than other wealthy countries who offer 4-6 weeks of paid vacation every year.  We have the idea that we have to work more to be more productive, which just isn’t true when you compare our productivity to that of countries with a lot more vacation.  Americans are afraid to get too far away from work (or the internet) due to fear of losing their jobs if they aren’t available.

    How can we change this mentality?  Would the Earth stop rotating on its axis if Americans truly took time off?  What if we “disconnected” for a few days, say a 3 day weekend such as Labor Day weekend?  What would happen?  Wouldn’t it be interesting to find out?

    I challenge you to unplug from work at least one day of this holiday weekend.  I’m sure the thought of this seems absurd to some of you, but entertain the idea for a while.  Just sit with it for a few minutes.  Close your eyes and imagine a whole day without cell phones, iPads, computers, internet service, and other electronic gadgets.  Notice how your body feels.  Notice how your mind feels.  What would you do if you actually carved out some free time for yourself?  No worries.  No work.  Not on call.  Nothing to do but relax, and (dare I think it?) have some fun.  When was the last time you just relaxed for a whole day, only doing what you wanted to do?  Have you missed your “free time”?

    Interesting to think about, isn’t it?  Did anything horrible happen while you took a few moments to imagine what it might feel like to carve out some time for yourself?  Is Earth still spinning?  Amazing, isn’t it?  You took a mental vacation for a few minutes and the world went on without you working.

    Now, what about putting your imagination into action?  What did you imagine yourself doing that was relaxing and/or fun?  I’m not talking about anything extravagant, just a day to do whatever you want to do.  I want you to put it on your calendar!  Yes, I said to schedule time for yourself!  In other countries, 6 weeks of vacation is not only offered, but is mandatory!  What a concept – mandatory time off from work!!

    You owe it to yourself.  You deserve time off.  This holiday is to acknowledge how hard you work the rest of the year.  Americans in the 1800’s thought it was important enough to make it a national holiday.  Accept their wisdom, respect the meaning of the holiday, and celebrate yourself with some well-earned time off work to have some fun and to relax.  Let’s take the “labor” out of “Labor Day” and make it “Leisure Day.”

      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.  Balanced Life offers individual life coaching, small group coaching, speaking and seminars on topics such as:  time management, organizational skills, maintaining energy & eliminating drains, achieving balance, self-care, and overcoming procrastination.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), LinkedIn, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  She is writing a book on creating a balanced life and will be offering workshops on this topic, soon.  Check the website or call for more information.


  • Sun, August 02, 2015 10:14 PM | Deleted user

    It’s hard to believe that summer vacation is nearly over when it has barely begun.  School is starting earlier all the time and kids have to get ready to focus on learning new material.  I used to be a teacher and school counselor and the beginning of the school year was always an exciting time full of possibilities and opportunities.  As a child, I felt the same way about school and looked forward to the first day of the new school year.  I loved the smell of the new paint, newly waxed floors, textbooks, paper, pencils, crayons, etc.  Everything about school signaled a new beginning!!

    Do you remember how you felt about the first day of school?  Did you look forward to it with anticipation?  Or were you one of the students who faced it with dread?  How do you approach learning new things today?  Do you look forward to it and welcome the challenge?  Or do you dig in your heels and complain about having to learn something new?

    Sometimes learning is thrust upon us at work.  Sometimes you have to learn new software or adjust to a new computer and computer system.  Some of us are required to earn CEU’s (Continuing Education Units) for our professions while others are required to get specialized training through their employers.  Learning for our work life is not the only type of learning in which we engage. 

    Informally, we learn how to relate to families, friends, coworkers, neighbors and others.  We learn about ourselves, our likes, dislikes, strengths, weaknesses, etc.  We learn about news and current events in the world, in our state and in our cities.  We learn how to repair something or how to make a new recipe. Is there something that you have wanted to learn but have put off?  What about taking some time to schedule something you want to learn?

    As we embark upon the beginning of the new school year, I ask you to consider what you are looking forward to learning.  Although you may choose to take a college class or course of study, you don’t have to be formally enrolled in classes to be a willing learner.  There are so many opportunities to learn new things or to brush up on skills, training or knowledge that there is no excuse for not learning something new!  You can learn anything from “how to tile a bathroom” to “how to bake a cake” on YouTube.  You can take teleclasses, webinars, online classes, personal interest classes at your local community college, or you can check out books on any topic of interest.  You can also ask somebody to teach you a skill you want to learn (such as how to make Grandma’s favorite meatloaf).

    As the children and college students in our community prepare to begin their new cycle of learning, I challenge you to learn something new, too.  Make it something you are excited about and you will find that learning something new can be exciting, fun and rewarding!

      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.  Balanced Life offers individual life coaching, small group coaching, speaking and seminars on topics such as:  time management, organizational skills, maintaining energy & eliminating drains, achieving balance, self-care, and overcoming procrastination.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), LinkedIn, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  She is writing a book on creating a balanced life and will be offering workshops on this topic, soon.  Check the website or call for more information.


  • Wed, July 01, 2015 12:00 AM | Deleted user

     BOOM!!!  BOOM!!!  BOOM!!!  The 4th of July is upon us and soon we will be hearing all kinds of noise from fireworks.  Some of us enjoy the pretty ones that expand in colorful rings or designs.  Some appreciate the gentle ones like snakes and colorful smoke balls.  Yet others like the loud ones that sound like bombs.    Which ones do you like?

    Consider this.  When you talk with others or with yourself, which type of fireworks represent the type of language, the message and the positivity or negativity of that conversation?  Have your words and emotions exploded like a bomb – KA-BOOM!!?  Or have they lit up the sky with beautiful designs and colors that cause you and others to “OOOH!!” and “AHHH!”

    We sometimes forget the impact our thoughts and words have on ourselves and others.  We get careless with our thoughts and the language we use in our self-talk and conversations with others.  If we aren’t careful, the negativity can act like TNT and explode causing lots of damage and injuries.

    This weekend, I began reading Louise Hay’s book, The Power is Within You in which she addresses the issues of being aware of the power of our thoughts, our connection to the universe and the collective unconscious.   She says, “. . . I found that there is only one thing that heals every problem, and that is: to love yourself.   When people start to love themselves more each day, it’s amazing how their lives get better.  They feel better.  They get the jobs they want.  They have the money they need.  Their relationships either improve, or the negative ones dissolve and new ones begin.”  She says world peace begins with inner peace within each of us.  We need to remember that we are in control of our minds and need to realize the power we have to affect ourselves and others.  Our thoughts are creative and shape our lives.  If we keep in mind, the Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would do unto yourself”, we would realize that what we give out comes back to us. “The way we talk to ourselves is really important because it becomes the basis of our spoken words.  It sets up the mental atmosphere in which we operate and which attracts us to our experiences. If we belittle ourselves, life is going to mean very little to us.  If we love and appreciate ourselves, then life can be a wonderful, joyous gift.”

    Do you “should” on yourself or others?  Pay attention to the “shoulds” you use and that you hear others use.  Hay says this shows that you are trying to control things you can’t control and you are trying to make yourself or others “wrong”.  Eliminate the “shoulds” and the “have tos” from your life and begin to say “choose to” which “puts a whole different perspective on our lives.”

    Hay tells the story of her life and how she changed her “poverty thinking” or “negative programming” by paying attention to her thoughts and words and by forgiving herself for not being perfect.  She began to trust life, to lighten up and to stop telling “disaster stories”.  She quit watching the news and stopped gossiping. If you want to get a realistic picture of the messages you are sending out, she suggests keeping a recording of all of your phone calls for several weeks.  When you listen to them, you may be surprised to hear the words you use, the inflection of your voice and the patterns you discover which may be negative or positive and supportive. 

    So what do you think?  What are the messages you are “shooting” to yourself and to others?  What type of fireworks do your thoughts and words represent?  Are they extremely explosive, producing lots of noise and destruction?  Or are they beautiful, creative and colorful which cause your audience to feel happy and awestruck?  Choose your words and your thoughts carefully so there are no injuries to yourself or others.  Enjoy the sparkle in the spectacular show of your creation!

      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.  Balanced Life offers individual life coaching, small group coaching, speaking and seminars on topics such as:  time management, organizational skills, maintaining energy & eliminating drains, achieving balance, self-care, and overcoming procrastination.  You can reach Kolleen through her website, Balanced Life (www.balanced-life.us), LinkedIn, Facebook or by calling her at (402) 499-5547.  She is writing a book on creating a balanced life and will be offering workshops on this topic, soon.  Check the website or call for more information.

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