Posts

How Strong is the Soul After Workplace Bullying?

Dawn in Mar 2012--Two weeks after getting out of the Mental Health ward

Sometimes we are unaware how strong and powerful we are on this earth. The picture of me looking exhausted and dis-empowered was taken two weeks after passing out in my workplace due to the stress of two years of workplace bullying.  My skin really was yellow back then and I had purple discoloration under my eyes at the time of this picture.  I ended up being taken to the Charles George VA Medical Center for treatment from the Midatlantic Consolidated Patient Accounting Center (MACPAC), which is the “revenue” agency within the Veteran Affairs. I had reported numerous managers for nepotism (illegal hiring of family and friends in the government by management) and other prohibited personnel matters. My management did everything they could to “break” me and to get me to quit my job, but I was determined to hold them accountable, which I did in March 2014. It was an “emotional victory” when I was able to refuse signing a “gag order” settlement that would keep me quiet and unable to share my story to help others who deal with workplace bullying.

Memories of all the “tactics” used to harm me, actually “liberated” me. If you are being bullied in the workplace, you also can become “liberated” too. I look back at all the false charges placed upon my character as I was on Administrative Leave for about 100 days, the wrongful denial of being given a medical Reasonable Accommodation as a severely disabled veteran, the hateful looks, and the denial of promotions, while management’s friends rose in their own promotion system, which was illegal. Reflecting back, I remember the man who called me on December 23, 2014 and told me he wanted to hire my healing services, but wanted no records and he would pay with cash. He asked me if I worked with gay people. That made me highly suspicious of this being a deceitful natured call. Who calls someone and asks if they work with “gay people”? I knew my Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) hearing was coming up in a couple of months and my “gut” was telling me that this call was not from a honest man. The entire call sounded like a “script” being read. Highly suspicious!

“Red flags” were coming up for me and I felt that this was no ordinary call. When I accepted the call and answered it, I had noticed it was from a “restricted’ caller, which denied me their phone number on my caller identification. While I listened to him, my intuition was also providing me with “insight” that this was not a normal call and he was up to something “shady”. I could even hear machinery in the background, which was common while I was waiting for my Equal Employment Opportunity hearing with the Administrative judge. I felt like the call was a “trap” of some kind and politely told the man that I did not feel that we were a good “fit” to work together and ended the call. Later 30 pages of my Facebook posts were entered into the “discovery” phase of the EEO process. All of my posts were positive and inspirational, which baffled my attorney and I. It appeared to me that desperate attempts were made to find something derogatory on me. That never happened. I had done no wrong.

When you deal with workplace bullying, you may experience a little or a lot of bullying. It really does not matter how much harm you receive–it’s how you perceive your own situation. Your thoughts form your belief system. Isn’t it time to evaluate if your belief system is supporting you for your highest good? Maybe it’s time to take a deep breath, and allow that breath to slowly be released, along with releasing old thought patterns that are keeping you trapped and small in your life.

You may be wondering how you can become liberated from workplace bullying. If you are a sensitive person, you may have a harder time working with aggressive workplace bullies. They sense that you are a “nice person” and according to statistics with the Workplace Bullying Institute, up to 37% of the people who are bullied in the workplace are targeted because they are compassionate and kind people. Often times, bullies perceive you as a “weak” person or an “easy target” to harass. Sometimes our “gifts” in our life come in ugly wrapping paper. The lesson or “gift” you may get out of bullying can help you to find comfort, healing, and owning your “personal power”. Let me explain. For me–I had to realize that the biggest bully was myself for thinking I was a “victim” during this time. That lesson propelled me forward to work on my own personal issues and become “free” from my past dis-empowerment. You may find that you get the “gift” of learning you need to set healthy boundaries in your life with all people or you may discover you need to work on having more self love and self respect. This give you the opportunity to discern on ways to “liberate” yourself and become happier in your life.

No matter how bad your situation is around workplace bullying, there is always an option you may never have thought about or an action you should take on your behalf. Keeping good records is always important. You can learn more about the importance and how to document at  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R1ZrLOMccHg  Once you “liberate” yourself and stand in your power, you may move onto a better job where you are treated with respect or you may become an entrepreneur like myself. What ever you do–live your soul’s purpose with great joy!

p.s.  If you would like a complimentary 20 minute strategy session with me about workplace bullying.  Reach out and contact me at www.DawnMarieWestmoreland.com

Dawn empowered on the bridge

What Government Employee Bullies Don’t Want You to Know

Dawn sitting on a rock in black and white

 

 

 

 

Let’s face it, depending on whose statistics you use, government workplace bullying is on the rise.  According to http://www.forbes.com/sites/naomishavin/2014/06/25/what-work-place-bullying-looks-like-in-2014-and-how-to-intervene/ “96% of American employees experience bullying in the workplace, and the nature of that bullying is changing”.   Workplace bullying creates a hostile workplace that is devoid of a safe and respectful work environment.  Bullied employees can hardly put out their best work when they are under so much stress. Then they may face disciplinary action because they are not working up to mandated work standards.  Talk about stress and feeling like a ‘victim’!  Holding government workplace bullies accountable can be hard, but I can make it a little easier for you. Let me share five tips for dealing with workplace bullying so you employ these tips and have a better outcome.

The first tip is to document your workplace bullying.  I created a video that explains it further at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R1ZrLOMccHg  This video explains the importance of why and how you should document workplace bullying.  I was able to ‘settle’ with the Veteran Affairs (VA) in March 2014 because I had ‘solid” documentation that supported my case of retaliation for being a VA “Whistleblower”.  Two days before my Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) hearing, the VA attorneys were willing to ‘settle’ with me.  I won an emotional victory as I can now write and talk about my own bullying story to help others because I refused to sign a “gag-order” that would keep me from sharing my story.

Second, be mindful that most government Human Resource departments are part of management.  If you are being bullied by management, you are also addressing your bullying situation with your management.  This is not necessarily a bad thing, but you should be aware of your organization’s structure.  Every government agency is required to have information on their bulletin boards such as job safety/health, Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) information, etc., that comply with government requirements.  Here is more information on Equal Employment Opportunity rights:  http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/posters/pdf/eeopost.pdf  Be aware of your rights and who to contact if they are being violated.  For example, if you file a discrimination report with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) for race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, sex or genetics, you must file within 45 days of the occurrence or the claim may not be accepted.

Third, federal laws prohibit covered entities from retaliating against a person who files a charge of discrimination, participates in a discrimination proceeding, or otherwise opposes an unlawful employment practice.  If you have filed an EEO case or have submitted prohibited personnel information to the Office of Special Counsel (OSC) and receive retaliation from your workplace, you are entitled to report the alleged allegations within 45 days for retaliation of you filing a grievance. Often times, the retaliation case may be combined with your initial reported case, for ease of processing and time guidelines. Be sure to report each occurrence of retaliation within 45 days or it may not be accepted.  Note:  Winning a discrimination case can be tough, however, if you are retaliated against and have good evidence or documentation, you may end up winning or settling on your ‘retaliation’ case because you are in a ‘protected status’ for filing your claim.

Fourth, often times there is very little disciplinary action done against government perpetrators. For example, the Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) has taken action to employ accountability in the Veteran Affairs and a new law was passed according to http://cv4a.org/cva-applauds-house-passage-va-accountability-act/ however, there does not seem to be a lot of accountability in regards to removing employees who meet disciplinary action mandates.   If you decide to ‘settle’ with the government agency you work in, you may consider not signing a “gag order” that keeps you legally from discussing your case with others. Who knows—you may want to write a book or share your story to help others who deal with government workplace bullying. If you have kept great documentation records, you may want to hold your ‘ground’ and refuse to sign a ‘gag order’ settlement agreement that most government attorneys will want you to sign.  Remember—it’s negotiable, but you must have the courage, documentation, and the willpower to demand it.

Fifth, workplace bullying takes a toll on your mental and physical health.   You must find balance, peace, and positive distractions so that you can stand up to your bullies, demand your entitled rights, and own your personal power.  It’s imperative to find a modality that helps you manage your stress.  You may find great relaxation with yoga, deep breathing exercises, meditation or another modality that resonates with you.  Also, learning how to empower yourself is one of the best ways to step up and own your ‘personal power’.  Find a coach, mentor, clergy member or someone that can help you to find your own confidence and empowerment that is within you.  Claiming your ‘personal power’ and becoming empowered is the greatest revenge of all when it comes to workplace bullying in the government.

P.S.  Did you know you can request a complimentary 20 minute “find your voice/strength here:  Get Advice or Coaching  As an anti-bullying speaker, author, coach, and HR consultant, I am able to help others stand up to workplace bullying.

 

Be a Winner by Being Authentically You

Dawn looking to the side with mikeWe live in a culture that values “followers’, rather than leaders.   It seems like “selfies” have gotten out of control and are rampant everywhere! While there is nothing wrong with having fun, there is an issue of always trying to “fit in” with the expectations of other people.   Why not celebrate your own uniqueness and talents? You pay a high price by trying to “fit in” with others. You lose your identity and authenticity when you always try to follow the herd.

For years, I had a sign, “Mavericks Don’t Follow the Herd”. It reminded me that it’s ok to be a unique individual and to not always try to “fit in” with others. Have you noticed that when you are authentic, you attract other like-minded people like yourself? It’s ok if people walk away from you or do not engage with you. They are probably not your “tribe” or people. I know I have spent years trying to be liked and to fit in with people. It was frustrating and mind-boggling to say the least, when people did not “get me” or understand me. Today, I surround myself with positive like-minded people who are my “tribe”. They are very different from me, but they like me for being authentic and unpretentious. It just feels good to be with people who support you and love you for who you are in this world.

You know what you are passionate about and what excites you in your life! You probably have ideas that you want to see come to fruition. You are meant to be engaged in activities, friends, and a career that supports your highest purpose on this earth. You must listen to your “gut feelings” or intuition that is pushing you to be authentic and happy! Oprah Winfrey, one of the greatest hosts in America, has mentioned in interviews that she did not “fit in” when she worked at a TV station in Baltimore, MD. She was removed as the evening news co-anchor in April 1977 and ended up as the co-host of a morning talk show, People Are Talking. Oprah immediately knew that she was on the right path and where her own uniqueness would “shine”.   The rest is history—Oprah is well known by many people. She is respected for her soulful interviews and philanthropy to make other people’s lives better.

There is a natural course to being authentic and fulfilling your soul’s purpose. When we allow ourselves to be unique, we are able to connect with other like-minded people and resources that align us in offering our “gifts” and talents with others through our work and our personal lives. Being authentic and being the real “you” creates honesty, self-esteem, joy, inner peace, creativity, and unconditional love for yourself.

Stop comparing yourself to others. They have their own “uniqueness” and you have your own. Strive to recognize that others have different “gifts” than you do and they may have skills that you wish you have, but don’t have. They may even be further down their career path than you are or they are more spiritually advanced because they have conscientiously invested in their own self-growth. The spiritual message of being jealous of others is that which you are jealous of– is your own unrecognized potential. It really is that simple. Don’t compare yourself to others. Be “You” and shine your own light.

Think of the “mighty oak tree that begins as an acorn. The acorn cannot be any other tree than an oak tree. With all the right conditions—sun, rain and nutrients from the soil, the tree becomes stronger and stronger. We all have our own personal destiny—to be authentic and live the life our soul demands. It’s my wish that everyone embraces their own uniqueness!

If you are wanting to empower yourself, now it the perfect time. Grab hold of my book, “The Empowered Whistleblower”: A Practical and Spiritual Path to Personal Power” at http://getbook.at/Dawn It’s my own story of being severely dis-empowered, me blowing the whistle on my “victimhood”, overcoming, and how I am empowering others today as an anti-bullying coach, author, speaker, and HR consultant.

Kind People Can Stand Up to Bullying

According to The Bully Institute, http://www.workplacebullying.org/tag/bullying-statistics/ the person who gets targeted the most in the workplace is the person who is considered kind and compassionate. Yikes, what if that is you in the workplace? Well, it was me when I worked in the Midatlantic Consolidated Patient Accounting Center (MACPAC), which is a Veteran Affairs organization in West Asheville, North Carolina.  Years ago, when I worked there,  I was asked by my former management to run an employee assistance program that would help MACPAC employees when they had economic issues that would come up. I was known for my “humanitarian” skills and for caring about other people.

Even though I consider myself a kind and compassionate person, I am a no-nonsense person when it comes to bullying or any kind of mistreatment in the workplace. Everyone is entitled to work in a safe environment and where they are treated with respect. After working 20 years in the Air Force as a female, I learned to be assertive when needed. That skill has come in handy many times in my life. I have never had a problem in being a “nice” person, but you must do so with healthy boundaries too. Let me explain. While I am a nice person, I held my bullies accountable and reported them to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and “settled” in March 2014. I held my “ground” and had great documentation—I “settled” with the Veteran Affairs without a “gag order” that would prevent me from telling my story. How often do you hear about that? You can be nice and you can also stand in your “personal power”.

Your presence and your demeanor tells everyone how you feel about yourself. If you carry yourself with dignity and grace, that is the way you are generally perceived by others. Bullies, who generally have low self-esteem, can pick up your energy and know that you may be an easy target to harass. They generally go after the people they deem as weak.  I realize that there are many kind and “sensitive” souls who have dealt with hardships in their life—divorce, death, bullying, etc. It’s part of your own journey to become your greatest self, but only if you learn your lessons or experience self-growth from these experiences.

If your old “stories” are “owning” you, instead of you “owning” your old stories, then it’s time to heal your past. Nurturing old wounds and not healing them is a sure way to stay small and stuck in your life. You must let go of your “hurtful” past so you can fully live the life you deserve! You can reach out to a trusted clergy person, a coach, mentor, therapist or anyone who is reputable and will help you heal your past. If you want to be truly “free” in your life, you must forgive the perpetrators in your life and let go of your old “stories”. You are forgiving them for your own “healthy” reasons—to move on with your life and heal.

I spent many years dealing with self-loathing and insecurities because I was molested as a young child. After I dealt with forgiving the perpetrator and working on my own self-development, I really found my “inner strength” and began to realize I could now help others because I am on the “other” side. I will admit—it was not easy, but it was worth it! In the past, I have lived in fancy houses and had many materialistic things in my life, but I was not happy. I had attracted an “alcoholic” into my life and my home felt like a “prison” back in those days.   I did not realize at that time, that I was looking through the “lens” of a victim and someone who had not found their “personal power”.   I had attracted many negative things in my life because I had felt “hopeless” and very insecure back then. That has changed, because I took 100% charge of my life and began to “cut” out negative people out of my life as much as possible. I carefully discern on who I want as friends today and it really makes a big difference for me. Today, I have never had more “freedom” and peace in my life. You deserve it too!

Let me share a webinar, which is now a video, I made about “Commanding Respect in Your Life”. Here it is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3oV12-pzac4   More free resources at  www.DawnMarieWestmoreland.com

 

dawns-book-cover

 

 

 

“The Real Cost of Being Beautiful”

Dawn in iPEC schoolSometimes people will “go the extra mile” in efforts to be beautiful. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 15.1 million cosmetic procedures were performed in 2013, which is a 3% increase from the previous year. Of these procedures, most of them — 13.4 million — were minimally invasive procedures, like botox injections and chemical peels. But a large number of people — around 1.6 million — went under the knife to have invasive procedures, like breast augmentation surgeries, nose reshaping surgeries, and liposuction surgeries, according to http://www.cheatsheet.com/personal-finance/how-much-do-we-spend-on-beauty.html

Now, I know that most of us want to look our best, but how much of this obsessions is pure insecurity in ourselves. It really “pains” me to see women chasing after “beauty” as if it will truly make them more confident. Let’s face it, when you take off your makeup or your garments that perform some miracle, you are the “real you”. I am not putting down makeup or looking your best, by no means! It’s when you become obsessed with “beauty” and it runs your life, I think there is a concern.

Do we ask men to get “implants”? Seriously! I heard that comment last night when I was at the Millrun for a comedy show featuring Vince Morris. Vince was taunting the women in his audience about their obsession with their views and unrelentless desire for plastic surgery and trying to be perfect. He had me on the end of my seat! I totally get his humor and his raw “truth” about the obsession of beauty.

I went to Miami, Florida last September to finish my third module of coaching with iPEC. I forgot to take a couple of makeup items and realized it down the road. I realized how perfectly comfortable I was without makeup and the need to impress another human being. I could have gone to a drug store and bought some makeup, but I chose not to because I am about the “beauty” inside me. But—don’t get me wrong, I do value looking great, but not at the cost of being obsessed with it.  The picture above proves that I have no makeup on and I am still a happy girl!  So, I may have been one of the few women in Miami (at this time) who had absolute no makeup on and was just perfectly fine with it!

As a teenager, I went to a high-end modeling agency in Jacksonville, Florida. I was told that I had the “looks” to be a high-fashion model.  My father was very handsome and my mother also gave me some very good genes too. I mean—I was 5’10” and about 120 lbs. when soaking wet. I was jumping up and down for joy, and that came to a halt when my mother told me in her own words—“It is not going to happen!” That probably was a beautiful gift from my mother at this time.

Most of my life has been about helping others and advocacy. I value inner beauty and kindness.  I went many years without wearing makeup and declining “miracle” garments that would somehow make me look “different”. I had spent too many years feeling insecure because of my childhood woes to let that insecurity back into my life as an adult chasing after “beauty”.

If you would spend the money to hire a coach or hypnotherapist that could help you feel better about yourself—that is beautiful! A coach or a hypnotherapist can get down to the “root” of your problem and help you “overcome” it so you can feel better about yourself. In my practice, I don’t just hypnotize someone and they are “confident”. There is never a magic “blue pill”.   I intuitively ask empowering questions so I know more about the “blocks” that people have that make them feel less beautiful or insecure. Together, whether in coaching or hypnotherapy, I work with each client to get “positive affirmation/results” that they want in their session. It’s always about the client—not what I want for them.  It’s their agenda.

If you work on becoming more secure and stop paying attention to marketing that is targeted to “insecure” women, who will buy about anything to make themselves feel better about themselves, you will find the reflection in the mirror to be more beautiful. Trust me on this! There is a trend with the women I work with–they all want more confidence. I even see it with men too. Wouldn’t you agree, that confident and positive women are far more attractive than one who is externally attractive, but feels insecure?

I share with this group my “Confidence building” hypnosis/meditation I made at http://DawnMarieWestmoreland.com/blog/ . I can work with individuals that want a more “tailored” session with me at www.DawnMarieWestmoreland.com

Phone, Google hangouts, or Skype work out just fine if it can’t be done in person. Here is to being “beautiful” you– inside and outside—because you are!

“The Leadership of Energy”

While I was attending training to become a coach with the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC), I learned from their coaching program that there are seven levels of energy. You can learn more about iPEC at www.ipeccoaching.com  The founder of this wonderful coaching school is Dr. Bruce D. Schneider.  Let’s talk about energy.  Everything is energy—our clothes, our cars, and even our personal thoughts.  There are also two types of energy:  anabolic and catabolic.   Anabolic energy is healing, productive, positive, and growth-oriented. While catabolic energy is contracting, draining, and resistant.   If you feel like a “victim’ or feel “hopeless”, that is catabolic energy.  While you feel like a victim, you perception may be distorted and affect the choices that you make.   If you are non-judgmental and feel passionate about your life, you may be at the high-end of the energy levels.

If you feel fear, guilt, worry, self-doubt or have low self-esteem, you will be operating at the lowest level of energy and feel like a “victim”.  Feeling this low, makes you susceptible to feeling helpless and avoiding confrontation.  You may feel like you are “losing”.  This is a highly destructive energy level.  You may notice that you are attracting other “victim-like” people in your life because “like” attracts “like”.   But you don’t have to be a “victim” or feel like you don’t have choices in your life. You can raise your energy levels by becoming more “empowered”.

As you move up the energy levels, you may experience what is known as level two energy.  This is where a person may want to manage others by force or control.   A person may want to project blame on others.  It’s an “I win and you lose” situation in this energy level.  It is certainly better than being a victim, but it’s still catabolic energy that is draining you.  Do you really want to have level two energy?

Level three energy is an entry-level of anabolic energy, which is productive energy and more uplifting.  A person may take responsibilities for their thoughts, actions, and emotions.  They realize they have a choice in the matter and take accountability for this state of being.  This is an “I win, and hopefully you win, too” energy.  A person can motivate themselves and others through forgiving others, being more tolerant, and compromising with others.

When you have a level four energy, you take little or nothing personally and are able to be more objective.  There is more of a “You win” going on and a “service” before self-mentality.  This kind of energy lends to compassion for others and inspiration to serve others.  This fosters team work, loyalty, and collaboration with others.   It is definitely a high level of energy that lends to you becoming more successful and making a difference in this world.

Some of the greatest leaders in this world have a level five energy, which is a “We all win or no one wins” mentality.   The people who possess this energy tend to be calm, confident entrepreneurial, and powerful.  There is a sense of being in control of your life and destiny.   There are no challenges, but every experience in life is an opportunity for self-growth.  One of the core thoughts is that a person is “accepting” of others and does not try to change them.

Level six energy is an energy where a person sees everyone and everything as an extension of themselves.   Their intuition is very active and people possessing this energy can tap into being a creative geniuses and they are visionaries, along with being a conscious leader.   The mentality is “We always win”.  The feeling are of permanent joy, satisfaction and pleasure.  There is a great sense of connection with everything and everyone.

The highest level of energy is one that is characterized by complete objective thinking, being fearless, and are non-judgmental.   A person with this kind of energy can view things with complete objectivity.  The mentality for this energy level is “Winning and losing are illusions”.  It is hard to imagine that concept, but with practice you can achieve it.   Leaders who possess this energy are “masters” in their world and consciously co-create their life experiences.   These are the most powerful leaders in the world.

There are always advantages and disadvantages of each energy level.  Everyone can experience level one energy (Catabolic energy aka “victimhood”) at times and also experience level four energy (Anabolic/where you take nothing personal) too.   Your overall average of your energy levels can dictate how successful you are in your personal life and in your business.  Generally, the higher your energy levels, the more satisfied you are in your relationships, finances, personal self-growth, and your achievements.

It is great to have an awareness of who you are, you level of “consciousness” and how you act in your life.  If you are interested in learning more about the leadership of energy and how to determine where you “fit” in with these energy levels, you can request more information at www.DawnMarieWestmoreland.com/contact    Just remember that every experience in our life is not a “challenge”, but an opportunity to grow and learn.  If you can truly accept and embrace that, you are raising your energy leadership.  Here is to an “empowering” 2015 and taking action to realize your dreams and Dawn and Virtuegoals this year!

Who Stole Your “Personal Power” from You?  Five Tips for Recovery

Dawn Westmoreland Full size picture(2)Are you constantly worried about what others think of you or that you won’t fit in with certain groups?  Do you “give in” easily to other people’s demands or you have given up hope that you will ever be truly heard?   As human beings in a spiritual body, I know that many of you have experienced it—giving away your “personal power”.    You have taken the unappreciative comments from another person or you have felt “isolated even though you are in a crowd of people.  It’s one of the worst feelings in the world.

Garbage men are often looked down upon from some people who feel they have achieved a “higher” status in life.  When I lived in Southern France for eight months, the garbage men went on strike for higher pay and better “holiday” time off.  I will never ever forget it.  They went on strike for one month and refused to pick up any trash till they got their demands.  I will not describe the smell or tell you what it looked like.  We all know what kitchens smell like if we don’t get the trash out in a timely manner.  Those garbage men got everything they wanted and I must say, I was secretly impressed and happy for them.

So often we give away our “personal power” and don’t realize why we are not being treated with respect.   You must believe in yourself, more than others believe in you.  If you are not being treated with respect, there may be a chance that you don’t respect your own self.  Hey it happens!  Been there myself and got the tee-shirt.  I also burned that darn tee-shirt a while ago.  I learned the hard way to find my own self-love and self-respect.   I am always excited to help others find it a whole lot faster than I did.  It’s time to burn that tee-shirt if you have it.  Let’s dive in and take action to stop giving away your “personal power”.

First,   Part of being a human being is feeling valued, appreciated, and having a sense of belonging.  There is no one on this earth that is more valuable than you or deserves more than you do.  That’s right!  We are all God’ children and if you have a different faith or belief, than choose your “source”.  Slow down a little in your life and notice the “signs” that are always there that tell you that you are connected to the divine and you are never ever alone on this earth.   I am constantly finding these “signs” and it was only when I really slowed down that I began to notice them.   Are you going so fast that you need to take yourself off of autopilot? Our society has conditioned us to go-go-go all the time and many times you are just being “busy” and really not as productive as you would like to be in your life.

Second, on this earth, you must put yourself first, before others.  There are so many people “serving” others and they are burning out because they are not nurturing themselves and practicing self-care.  Compare it to driving a car for a long time and not maintaining it.  The car will break down eventually because it was not maintained.  You must fulfill your needs first, so you can respond and care for others.  You may be more “driven” or motivated than your spouse or partner, you cannot change them, but you can change yourself.   And you must take action to fulfill your future or you will most likely experience being “uncomfortable” or that things are not working out the way you want them to be.  Sometimes we have to experience misery or being uncomfortable so that we are “prompted” to be in alignment with our life purpose.  This is no joke.  Being in the mental health ward for three days was the best “gift” ever for me.  I realized I was working in a job that was totally unfulfilling and working with people who had very low energies.   It “shifted” me quickly to train in a year-long program to be a Life Coach.  What a “gift”!

Third, stop worrying what others will think of you.  They are responsible for their actions and emotions.   You must be fair and considerate to others, as it is always the right thing to do.  If you compassionately share some unpleasant news and the other person cries or gets mad, it probably means that they have some “unresolved” issues in their life that they need to heal or resolve.  They may have been hurt in the past from a bad experience and it is still “unresolved” and eating away at them.  Each of us has to “heal” ourselves and make amends with issues that have harmed or hurt us.  We cannot “will” away some one else’s hurt or pain.  We can be there for them and show support, but we cannot do the work for them.  There is no magic pill.  Healing or forgiving others can be hard work, but definitely worth it in the long run.

Fourth, if you are seeking answers from everyone else, but yourself.  Stop it right now!   You have an opinion and an “expert adviser” in you for many of the answers you are seeking.  Stop asking someone else about how you should handle your affairs, unless you are seeking professional advice that you truly need.  I see this over and over with people. They will ask me what I think about a matter involving them.   I will turn it around in an empowering question and ask, “How are you giving away your personal power” to me when you know better than I, what is best for you.  I never give advice to people.  I will provide information that could be valuable to them, but want others to feel empowered because they become their own leader and take charge of their life.  Think about it yourself—how do you give away your own “personal power”?  When you realize it–that is the first step.   Now take appropriate action for yourself.

Fifth, I use to run track in high school.  I was pretty good too.  I was running a race and I looked back and that was all it took to slow me down and the other runner won the race.  I was so disappointed in myself that day.  My coach and my mother told me later, that if I had not looked back, I would have won the race. How often are you comparing yourself with others or you are feeling insecure because someone is further down the “track” than where you are at this time?  Often times, people who are successful will open up their wings more and take more risks in life.   They don’t play small and they are competing against themselves so they can be their very best.  Just keep your eyes on the goal and outcome you want in life. Stop comparing yourself and getting upset if someone else is doing better than you.  They have bad days too!  Consider this—what is the most loving and empowering thing you can do today, to help you achieve your goals or live the life you deserve?

I am about to create a “confidence” hypnosis/meditation MP3 soon.   If you have never experienced hypnosis—it’s simply a guided meditation designed to relax you while you benefit from suggestions provided.   If you want to get a copy, be sure to sign up for my newsletter.   I offer complimentary products from time to time, and only in my newsletter.  Sign up for my newsletter at http://eepurl.com/8vFN1   The “confidence” MP3 will be included in my next newsletter.

Here is to your “Empowerment” and a great week!

Warmly,

Dawn Westmoreland

 My web site        Twitter        LinkedIn         Facebook

How to Believe in Yourself—Three Steps You Can Conquer

Believe in YourselfI remember my business coach telling me, “You have to believe in yourself more than others believe in you”, when I first started working with her last year.  Everyone experiences self-doubt at times.  Even I do sometimes.  I remember when I first spoke out against the prohibited personnel actions going on in the Veteran Affairs agency several years ago.  As soon as I filed charges against my management, I experienced severe work place bullying and retaliation.  At this time, I was also trying to encourage a good friend of mine from committing suicide due to their own workplace bullying.

My troubles began building as I was trying to down-size and sell my house.  My house flooded two times and my insurance company dropped me after paying me back for repairs of nearly $30k.   Now, the stress of all of this was starting to overwhelm me and I was feeling very discouraged at this time.  I had so much self-doubt at the time and wondered if I could conquer all my goals.  It took about nine months and a lot of up-grades to sell my house.  The house and property were very nice, but would appeal to only someone who loved being on the side of a hill and loved to garden—I mean a lot of gardening!   I thought that my troubles could not get any worse and then the Veteran Affairs disregarded my doctor’s recommendation of being allowed to work from my home computer.   I refused to go back to the Veteran Affairs, to a hostile work environment and my management cut off my pay.  Mind you, I was paying for an attorney and living hand-to-mouth at the time.

The story has a great ending!  My troubles and self-doubt were conquered.  I settled with the Veteran Affairs in March 2014.  One week after settling with the Veteran Affairs, I became a Life Coach and now show people how to become empowered.  As a Life Coach, I don’t provide the solutions, but help people to realize where they are “stuck” in their lives so they can get “unstuck”.   Once they see what is holding them back, I am able to assist them with reaching their goals.  This is what empowerment is about.   Life is full of choices and it’s up to us to choose wisely.  So, how do you believe in yourself more?

First, you must take 100% accountability in your life.   If you are selling yourself short—stop!  Be responsible and make sure you are being accountable in everything you do in this life.  When you know you are being responsible and honest with yourself, it’s hard not to believe in yourself and what you are doing. If you don’t like your job—change jobs!   Own up to the mistakes you make, but don’t beat yourself up!  Learn from your mistakes and make the right action to grow from them.   I learned that I did not have to earn four degrees (after I had earned them) to impress my dead grandmother who had a PhD.  I was smart, without even earning a degree.

Second, take a good look at yourself in the mirror.  Are you your own best friend or worst enemy? If you are cringing to look at yourself and realize you have low self-esteem, take steps to improve your self-esteem.  Lose weight, exercise, go to a support group for help or reach out to a modality that helps you “shift” out of your old patterns or belief system that has been holding you back.  Life coaching and hypnotherapy are excellent ways to help with confidence and breaking old patterns.  It saved my life and now I do it to help others so they can feel better about themselves and have more confidence.

Third, no matter what you faith is, you will find so many benefits in asking for the help you need.  I use to ask God to please “fix” things for me.  Now, I ask God to please help me to become the person I need to become, so I can handle/manage things better in my life.  I have seen so many “signs” in my life, which tell me I am not alone and I am much loved.   I will find a white feather out of the ordinary and last night my stand-up fan turned on by itself.  These are “signs” to me that I am much supported and never alone on this earth—never.   These “signs” get my attention and gently remind me to believe in myself and know I am always supported.  We all have the ability to see “signs” and know we are loved.   Sometimes, we just have to slow down and pay attention.  We are all on this earth for a reason and we must believe in ourselves so we can fulfill our destinies.  We can do this when we fully believe in ourselves and realize what we are capable of doing on this earth.  Each of us are very powerful in a meaningful way.

I would be happy to explain to you how life coaching and/or hypnotherapy can help you to believe more in yourself.  Book a complimentary 20 minute session with me at www.DawnMarieWestmoreland.com/contact

Five Ways to Step Into Your Freedom

Dawn and VirtueHave you ever thought you felt “trapped” or “enslaved” in your life?  You may have a fancy home or the car of your dreams, but yet, something is really missing in your life.  If you feel that there is more to life than waking up, driving to work, working in a job that does not necessarily fulfill you, going home to spend time in front of the tube, you are not alone!  Recently I heard on the radio that three out of four people do not like their bosses.  That is a lot of unhappiness if you ask me. Let’s take charge of our lives and be accountable to us.  It’s time to step into your “freedom”.

Step one, if you are miserable in your life or job, you may not be in alignment with your true purpose on this earth.   Sometimes we must experience misery, being uncomfortable, and feeling unfulfilled to prompt us into positive action so we are living our true purpose.  Check in with yourself.  If you are not happy in your life, are you really doing the kind of work that you are passionate about and excited to do every day?  Are you with the partner or mate that truly makes you happy and brings joy to your life? Life is sooooo long when you are unhappy.  Take charge of your life!  Work in a job that makes you fulfilled and be with the person who makes your soul feel complete.

Step two, is “fear” controlling your life?  If fear is controlling your life, the fastest way to gain confidence is to tackle what you are afraid of because it will give you confidence.  Seriously.   I am talking about facing fear that is holding you back from being happier and more confident.  Life coaching and hypnotherapy are excellent tools to identify why fear is “protecting” you, holding you back in life, and provides the means to overcome the “fear” in your life.

Step three, is insecurity or lack of confidence keeping you a “leader in hiding”?  Anyone who has experienced life on life’s terms has probably been hurt by some experience.  We all get lessons in life, but we must not let them define us in a way that keeps us small in life.  We have to be accountable in our life.  No excuses!   Let go of the past, forgive the person who may have hurt you, take giant leaps of faith to become the person who can “overcome” the hardships that come up while living on this earth.  We forgive others so we let go of the negative energy or chords we have with the person who harmed us.

Step four, are you taking good care of yourself?  If you are eating poorly, watching too much TV, and making excuses why you can’t get a little exercise done, it’s time to really evaluate how you are treating your body.  When you look in a mirror, are you your own best friend or worst enemy?  Be mindful of all your actions in your life.  Life is always about choices.  Be smart.  Eat right.  Have fun, but treat your body right and it will reward you back.  We have all heard the phrase, “You are what you eat”.  There are tons of helpful advice on the internet.  Reach out for help if you need it.  You deserve it and others are counting on you to be in good shape.

Step five, if you are not in touch with your own intuition, it is high time that you connect with your intuition.  We all have some form of intuition.  Pay attention to the “signs” you get that confirm your intuition is right.  There are great courses you can sign up for and get help with credible instructors that can help you get in touch with your own intuition.  Being connected with your intuition is one of the greatest gifts we have and it can really help you make wise choices in your life.  It can help you find empowerment and the freedom you desire in your life.  So run, don’t walk…..and get in touch with your intuition.  Life is all about choices.  Make smart ones.  We are all much more powerful and intuitive than we realize.  That is mind-blowing, but the truth.  When we make smart decisions, it sets us free to become the person we really want to be in our lifetime.  Life is about choices.   Empower yourself and set yourself free.  Stop following the crowd.  Be a maverick if you want.   Freedom is a choice and you can have it too.   We only have to “unlock” our potential and step into the life we all really deserve.  That is what freedom is all about.

Dawn Westmoreland is a life coach and hypnotherapist on a passionate mission to empower women who are ready to come out “hiding” and become their authentic selves.  Dawn resides in Asheville, NC with her dog and two cats.  She offers a 20 minute complimentary “break-through” strategy consultation for women who want to take charge of their lives and are ready for positive change.  Request your complimentary session at www.DawnMarieWestmoreland.com/contact

 

 

The Art and Science of Self-Care

Self careWe all know that burnt out feeling when we are tired or overwhelmed in our life.  It may come on slow, but it can really affect us personally and professionally when we are not taking good care of ourselves.  We rush, we scatter, and we are running with our heads cut off………We think it is the way to success, by always being busy and multi-tasking.  With all the conveniences we have today, we seem to be still on “overloaded” with work and activities.   No wonder we are so darn tired!

Self-care is about taking care of yourself and your needs.  I find that getting energy body work and massage to be very healing and grounding.  When I get regular energy work and massage, I am able to focus more on my practice and it recharges my energy.  Our bodies need regular care and if we do not practice self-care, we will end up feeling burnt out, overwhelmed, and not succeeding in all our endeavors.  I highly suggest that you make it a practice to get a massage, receive body work or experience a modality that helps your body to feel better.  The body heals itself, but it does count on us to make wise choices and to be good to ourselves.

You never want to think of self-care as a luxury.  It is not.  It is a necessity that will keep your body “fueled” and in a homeostasis manner.  Pay attention to the food that you put in your body.  Is it free of pesticides, herbicides, dyes, additives, chemicals etc.?  Our body was not designed to eat poisonous foods and drinks.  Are you overweight and depressed?  It is time to evaluate the self-care you are giving yourself.  Are you getting the necessary exercise you need?  Sometimes, it is as simple as taking a daily walk and experiencing the benefits of an active body in motion.  It is well known that people sleep better at night when they have a good exercise routine.

I encourage you to evaluate how you can incorporate self-care in your life.  One of the best ways to see how your life is changing is to journal each day.  You can later review your trends and your accomplishments.   Be good to yourself!  Not only do you deserve it, but your body needs it.  I find that getting regular massages and energy work to be the best self-care for my body.  It shows too.  I have accomplished so much more in my life and people notice the difference in me too.  I attribute it to being better at self-care and loving myself in a healthier way.

Did you know that hypnosis is a great way to provide your body with self-care.   Not only is it extremely relaxing, but it is very effective in being therapeutic for your body.  Check out my complimentary “relaxation” hypnosis/meditation video at www.DawnMarieWestmoreland.com  You will find it on the top right side of my home page.  Enjoy.  Relax.  You are on your way to self-care.