The Oxford dictionary defines practice as performing an activity, exercise or skill repeatedly or regularly in order to acquire, improve or maintain efficiency in it. This makes sense to me. I have been practicing something or another my entire life. Some skills come more easily than others.
When I was little I practiced my ABC’s. I became good at that. Learning to tie shoelaces was a big deal and I needed a lot of practice. Time went on, and I practiced riding my bike, and eventually walking in high heels. Then came speaking Spanish. I still need lots of practice speaking Spanish.
Upon graduating from college I began 35 years of nursing practice sprinkled with practicing diapering babies, talking so kids could listen, helping with homework and the new math, and learning to say I’m sorry.
I learned a long time ago that I would be effective as a nurse, parent, partner and coach to the extent I was willing to practice what I believe. I believe in love and in the human spirit. I believe in the beauty of imperfection. I believe each day is a new beginning and a new opportunity to practice. I do not believe that practice makes perfect. That’s lucky for me because I am far from perfect.
As a life coach I continually practice coaching skills and now my practice is called “Walking the Talk”. As a life coach the IAC masteries guide my practice of “Walking the Talk.” My clients guide me as well. Indeed, life guides me day and night. Though I don’t coach my family, I practice the masteries in my relationships with my husband and my adult children. Most intimately, I practice the masteries with myself.
So today, when I’m not practicing how to stay out of my kids’ adult lives, be a compassionate and fun wife, and properly use my computer, I practice the IAC Masteries. Like this:
1. Establishing trust…how willing am I to trust myself?
2. Perceiving potential…how willing am I to relinquish self-doubt?
3. Engaged listening…how willing am I to deeply listen to AND hear my inner voice, intuition and guidance?
4. Processing in the present…how easily do I remember that all I really have is the present moment. How readily do I embrace my gratitude?
5. Expressing…how eager am I to give voice to my truth, my fears, my joy, and my desires?
6. Clarifying…how courageously do I seek to understand?
7. Make clear intentions…intentions that inspire me, empower me and support me.
8. Inviting possibility…how willing am I to open to creativity, self-forgiveness and self-love?
9. Create and use support systems and structure…first I breathe and then ask for help. The gift I give is receiving the help offered to me as I seek to mobilize the energy of love.
This is how I practice “Walking the Talk”.
Martha Pasternack, MMC; My passion for witnessing the beauty and mystery of life, healthy healing and the promotion of Peace on Earth are integral to my daily life. I have been life coaching since 2004 as a Fearless Living Coach after working 30 years as a health care professional.