Marilyn's Musings Blog


In my twice monthly "Marilyn's Musings" Blog for Capacity Building Coaching, I offer resource-rich leadership and personal development content, with a commitment to being vulnerable, real and practical in my sharing.

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  • The Blame Game

    There are key ingredients, traits, outlooks, that enable some people to grow from feedback and personal insight and others to regress.You know some of the people that regress - they get defensive when someone points out something. They are experts at pointing the finger at multiple other people and circumstances to explain why it is not their fault. They always have a reason for why things went wrong and that reason is never their own mistake or shortcoming.You don’t have to be very old to...  Read More...

  • Creative Stress Releases

    Often one of the hardest questions I ask clients is to name the top 10 things that refresh them or “fill their tank” back up.It is rare to have someone be able to rattle off 10. Some, even with lots of encouragement, have a hard time doing so.Depending on whether you are an introvert or extrovert, what refreshes you may look drastically different. Then of course each of us is unique.What do most of us share?   Read More...

  • Diversity and Support

    Likely you would all agree that you want to be supportive to your friends and family. Me too. We want to encourage them in their endeavors, listen to their dreams and disappointments, celebrate with them and love them how they most enjoy being loved.This is a time in world history when we talk so openly about embracing diversity.   Read More...

  • Being In The Flow

    There are different words connected to this concept of “flow”. Intuition. Discernment.   Read More...

  • Your Emotions Are So Logical!

    Which came first, the emotion or the thought? It’s an interesting question and it matters when we either want to be more self-aware or create lasting change.There are assessments that measure whether a person tends more toward emotion or thinking. Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is a great example of that.Some of us feel first and then, hopefully, think about the situation, including our feelings.   Read More...

  • What’s So Powerful About Coaching?

    It is International Coaching Week. I thought it would be a great time to talk about the power of coaching and what it is and is not.So often I hear people say “Oh I don’t think I need coaching, things are going well.” To use a sports analogy that would be like saying the Patriots don’t need a coach because they have won so many games. (Sorry if you are not a Patriots fan.)Coaching is best suited to people who are doing well.   Read More...

  • Managing Stress

    This is a topic we keep visiting here but for good reason. I dare you to find 10 people who can honestly tell you that they are not that stressed right now!Today let’s talk about managing stress around big undertakings. I feel like I’m getting to practice this one as Bill and I tackle creating The Cedars.   Read More...

  • Tools for Difficult Conversations

    This week I’m getting to speak in Wimberley. The Chamber of Commerce is having it’s first ever small business week with a day of seminars and a day of exhibitions. The topic is difficult conversation tools so let’s chat about that that today.As I prepared for the 1-hour workshop, I started by listing what does make conversations and conflict difficult at times:Old pain and old stories that get triggeredMaking the current conflict about way bigger themes instead of what is currentGetting defensiv...  Read More...

  • Conscious Relaxation

    Yesterday I fell asleep on my bed with my mouth full of food and my feet hanging off the end of the bed. It was the grown-up version of the toddler who face-plants into their food in their highchair.This is not my normal, in case you were wondering. I had 2.5 hours of dental work done and chose to be “consciously sedated”.   Read More...

  • Networking & Small Talk Strategies

    As a natural extrovert, networking and small talk come easily to me, but I still put thought in to them.If you are an introvert, networking and creating conversations with strangers may be both painful and exhausting. It is an important part of life and often brings gifts to those who do it well. Although you may never love it, I hope some strategies and ideas here will make it less painful and more productive for you.Maybe you don’t mind networking but don’t feel very good at it.   Read More...

  • Staying on Track with Goals

    I remember being amazed at how many women were pregnant when I was. Of course the number of women pregnant at the time was no higher.When something is on our consciousness in a different way we notice it more. If I buy a new car, “all of a sudden” I am noticing that car around everywhere.This is how our brain works.That funny saying is relevant here - “Don’t think about a pink elephant!”One of the best ways to stay on track with our goals and new patterns of behavio...  Read More...

  • Love Languages

    This week I'm sharing a blogpost that I wrote last year on love languages. It's always timely! Hope you enjoy!The idea that we hear love and speak love in different ways has been made widely popular and very accessible by the work of Gary Chapman. I highly recommend his book, in fact I give it to all the young couples in our family.   Read More...

  • Facing Fear in Texas Y'all!

    When it comes to fear in some ways I’m very fearless and in others I’m a scaredy cat. One of the highest ranked fears - public speaking - I quite enjoy. I don’t like having needles but they don’t really bother me.   Read More...

  • From Manipulation to Authenticity

    As promised (last week), today I want to focus on offering ideas for those of you who see this pattern in yourself but want to grow.Here is the tricky part. Manipulation often gets people what they think they want. It reinforces itself.If I don’t want to feel pain and by lying I avoid the pain then I’m likely to try that again.If I want you to feel bad for me and do something nice for me and that works then I’m likely going to use that perspective of myself as a victim again.The patterns around ...  Read More...

  • Influence or Manipulation?

    Baby’s do it, Moms do it, CEOs do it. The truth is, we all do it. Some of us overtly, some of us in ways we are not even conscious of.   Read More...

  • Upside Down Thinking

    On Monday I made a commitment to my personal trainer, who was coaching me, to journal about my upside-down thinking. Why not up the “vulnerability factor” and share that with you? I know that if I wrestle with something, there are other people out there wrestling too.So, when I take the self-compassion test by Dr.   Read More...

  • The Gift of Writing

    Recently I learned that there is not evidence to suggest that weekly or daily blogging supports your business in measurable ways. It takes time, energy and dedication. So, why am I still doing it? As I share my reasons you can be sure that I will be requesting that you consider the possible benefits for yourself.   Read More...

  • The Skill of Truth-Telling

    Whether it’s the omission of a fact, the little white lie or an intentional deception, we have all participated in offering an inaccurate slant on reality. Why do we do it? So many reasons. To impress, to avoid consequences, to avoid being judged, to try and get our own way, to avoid feeling shame, to avoid hurting someone else’s feelings, to get the job or the promotion. Current events have focused a lot lately on how the lack of truth-telling can come back and bite y...  Read More...

  • Don’t Tell Me I Can’t!

    There is a long list of things people have told me I can’t do, shouldn’t do, won’t be successful at doing. Many of those things I have done.  You too? There’s something about a challenge that I find hard to resist.   Read More...

  • 5 Principals of Encouragement

    As a coach I have the honor of getting to hear people’s very personal thoughts, fears and insecurities. We all have them.  We also all get to experience overwhelm at times.   Read More...

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Recent Posts

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    Unplugging Your Inner Critic

    When I think about critics I think about the infamous Statler and Waldorf muppet characters. They crack me up. (Statler and Waldorf wikipedia)However living with a pair like that would be horrid.   Read More...

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    Increasing Emotional Resiliency

    In the coaching world we talk about “self mastery”. I see it as the foundational work we need for ongoing resiliency. That ability to bounce back and even thrive during or after difficult times and situations is made up of multiple skills, habits and beliefs.   Read More...

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