What Does Chemistry in a Relationship Mean

Chemistry in a relationship is like a performance; one is electrifying and another is boring. But no matter what, for love’s sake, you have to keep working at it to make it better.

Chances are you’re reading this because you’re in a relationship lacking in chemistry and wondering whether to stay or go. Maybe the chemistry was once there, but you no longer feel “in love.” Or it was never there and you suspect you made a big mistake. Consider this: Maybe the real issue isn’t so much the lack of chemistry but some other problem you haven’t identified.

How do you define chemistry? I think of it as a strong attraction that includes love, lust, infatuation, and a desire to be involved intimately with someone. Chemistry is emotional desire for relationship. It is outside of the realm of reason. With it, you may be attracted to someone who you know, intellectually, is not good for you. Without it, you may be with someone you respect but are not attracted to. At best, you can have both chemistry and love; at worst, you may have chemistry and misery or no chemistry and misery. Regardless your definition, chemistry is unconscious; we don’t “choose” who we’re attracted to. Even so, we aren’t helpless. We can do much to understand and manage it. Following are guidelines that can help you navigate the minefields of attraction.

1. Do you have to have chemistry for a successful relationship? No, but don’t fool yourself into thinking you will learn to love someone. Yes, it’s possible; but if you aren’t attracted to her, you may come to resent your decision. Be honest with yourself; do not choose a relationship primarily because “she’s a good person.” This is a formula for disaster. On the other hand, if the attraction isn’t there, it can grow. Many times people grow to love one another as they get to know each other better.

2. Because it’s unconscious, searching for chemistry in a relationship is a hit-and-miss proposition. You can find it, but you’ll have to be patient. How will you know you’ve found it? You won’t be arguing with yourself whether or not you love him. If it’s a debate, then either the chemistry is missing or he’s a poor partner for you.

3. Once found, you’ll have to be patient again – or you may make a mistake you’ll deeply regret. Chemistry isn’t the end-all, be-all solution it may appear to be. Because it’s unconscious, feeling deeply attracted to someone can be a result of childhood issues you’re unaware of or haven’t resolved. A big red flag is when you see a problem in your partner and you tell yourself things like, “This isn’t such a big deal; I can handle this,” or “I know he has a problem, but he’s working on it,” or “He really loves me; I’m sure we’ll work it out.” Ignore these problems now and you’ll have much bigger ones to contend with later.

4. If you’ve made it past these hurdles, you have one more challenge: The test of time. I’ve been coaching and counseling couples since 2000. One of the comments I hear most often is, “We’ve been married for years, but haven’t felt ‘in love’ since the early part of our marriage.” The “high” of new love rarely lasts more than a couple years. Once over, you’ll need to replace it with something more substantial: caring, respect, forgiveness, and an ability to communicate. These things can be learned, but you’ll have to work hard at them. Some may be difficult skills for you to master. You can definitely do it; roll up your sleeves and get to work!

5. Can you recreate lost love? Yes! In order to do so you must have one essential ingredient – willingness on the part of both people involved. My experience with couples is once a person has “given up,” has decided in his heart he no longer wants the relationship, the chances of rekindling love are minimal. You don’t have to have a lot of willingness; faith the size of a “mustard seed” can be enough. Counseling to help resolve underlying problems and to motivate you can be helpful. Keep the faith!

David Cantu
Life Coach Austin, Texas
Chemistry in a Relationship – Is it Love? How Do You Define it?- Article © 2009

What Makes a Good Relationship Work?

HeartThere are those who give little of the much which they have – and they give it for recognition and their hidden desire makes their gifts unwholesome. ~ Kahlil Gibran

What do you think is the most important ingredient for a successful relationship?
Would you say love? How about respect? Maybe you think it’s sex? Is it communication or commitment? Yes, all of these elements are critical. I find it hard not to put love at the top of the chart. In my mind, the others are subsets, or aspects, of love. Now, which of these ingredients is most essential for love? I got an e-mail from a friend recently and his vote is on giving. According to him, one of the biggest problems is that we generally “enter a relationship in order to get something…” This is so true.

Couple Romantic SunsetMy first response reminded me of a scene in the movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

Little Violet: (commenting on George Bailey) “I like him.”
Little Mary: “You like every boy.”
Little Violet: “What’s wrong with that?”

What’s wrong with entering a relationship in order to get something?
I say nothing. In fact, if we didn’t get a lot of “somethings” from a relationship, I suspect humanity would have died off a long time ago. In a very real and practical way, we need a great deal from relationships. We need respect, commitment, security, and, yes, sex. The possibility of getting them makes a partnership really attractive, and that’s why we put so much energy into marriage. In addition, there’s the powerful lure of romance and infatuation. All these factors make relationships worth pursuing. If you don’t know how to receive, if your focus is too much on giving, you’re going to have relationship problems!

True as this may be, it still misses my friend’s point.
We often pursue and interact with others from a very selfish perspective. Much too often, we ignore that we’re in a relationship not so much out of a desire for mutual sharing, but with a motivation that screams, “Me, me, me.” I’ve been counseling couples for more than twelve years, and one of the main problems people cite in their marriages is communication. In order to help them, I give very specific and simple instructions to help them communicate more effectively. The essence of these directions is, “put aside for a moment what you think, and explore what your partner is saying.” Very rarely are couples able to follow the advice initially. Why? Because we find it much easier to focus on what we think and what we want rather than on what our partner thinks and wants. This is a natural habit, one that causes us no end of grief.

Fundamentally, most of us are willing to give.
What gets in our way is fear or concern that we’re on the short end of the receiving stick. Once this thinking takes root, problems snowball. We begin to withhold and become resentful; our partner reciprocates; and it’s downhill from there. What’s the answer? I suggest a healthy dose of giving with a dash of responsibility and receiving:

1. Put your energy into giving, but do it thoughtfully.

We tend to give what we want, but that isn’t necessarily what our partners want.

In his book, “The Five Love Languages,” Gary Chapman says, “People speak different love languages.” Forget for a moment how you want to be loved and figure out how your partner wants to be loved.

2. Ask yourself this important question: “Am I giving in order to get?” If you’re treating your partner with the attitude that your relationship is basically a “business deal” and you often hear yourself asking, “I do this and that for you, what are you doing for me?” – then you don’t know what it means to give, period. I’ll be blunt; you need help, go get a counselor.

3. Listening is an act of giving. Learn to listen to your partner; this takes practice; and it isn’t as easy as it sounds. See my article, Effective Communication and Listening. Your relationship will benefit a great deal if you make it a priority to “walk in his shoes.”

4. Figure out what you lack in your relationship and ask yourself: “Is this something I should be getting from my partner, or am I being unreasonable?” This question can be difficult to answer. Too often we make demands of our partners that are a projection of our own insecurities. To really figure this out you may need help from an objective friend, counselor, or minister.

5. Be clear about your own wants. Too often people ignore their needs with the mistaken idea that giving is always better that receiving. This is a fallacy that inevitably leads to resentment and heartache. In order for your relationship to flourish you must be on the receiving end on a regular basis. Practice taking responsibility for getting what you want. It’s up to you, it’s your life!

David Cantu
Life Coach Austin, Texas
Create a Good Loving Relationship – Approach it with a Giving Heart – Article © 2009

Effective Communication Tips – Speak Respectfully & Directly

Let your speech be always full of grace, seasoned with salt. ~ Colossians 4:6

Have you ever started an innocent conversation
with someone only to have it disintegrate into anger or frustration? We sometimes try to pinpoint where it all went wrong;Couple Frustrated but a more useful starting point may be, “What can I do to prevent it?” Other than those lopsided encounters with someone who talks as if there’s no tomorrow, most conversations include a give and take in which we alternate roles of speaker and listener. Following are “ground rules” that can be helpful in any interaction. The focus here is on the speaker role and, in particular, those talks in which you need to address an area of conflict, a sensitive topic, or something that bothers you. By “speaker role” I mean times when you have a complaint against someone as opposed to those situations when someone’s pointing out a problem he has with you.

Is this really an issue?

It’s amazingly easy to get caught up in drama. Before you go charging into a fray, ask yourself, “Is this important, or am I making a big deal out of nothing?” It’s so tempting to convince ourselves that we’re dealing with a real problem. Put it on hold for a day or two before addressing the issue. Allowing your emotions to take over is counter-productive; approach the situation as calmly as possible. By taking a long deep breath you enable yourself to be objective.

Be respectful.

Resolve to be respectful with the other person. In order for you to be effective it will help a great deal if you aren’t critical. Being negative or condescending will alienate others and make it difficult for them to listen to your perspective. Rather than point out how he’s wrong, focus instead on a goal. It’s easy for a person to feel defensive. If he does, let him know that you simply want a new outcome.

Be direct.

Being direct is probably the most difficult of all these guidelines. Too often we tiptoe around an issue and Couple Talkingdon’t say exactly what we mean. This doesn’t mean you should “just be honest.” We sometimes use honesty as an excuse to be mean. At the same time it’s important that you get to the point. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that being direct is offensive; it isn’t, if your intention is one of compassion and respect. A great way to be direct is to take responsibility for your choices and thoughts. Rather than saying, “I don’t think what you’re doing is right,” say, “I want you to stop what you’ve been doing.” In the first statement you place the responsibility on morality – right and wrong; in the second statement you take the responsibility yourself – “This is what I want.”

Stay focused.

You can get off track in thousands of ways. Regardless what the other person says, remember the reason you brought up the discussion; return to the topic anytime either of you veers off course. If the other person makes some kind of counter-argument, acknowledge it when true; but return to your original issue. Don’t get caught up with tangential problems.

Be willing to listen.

Finally, sometimes it’s important to change to the listener role.Couple Holding Hands Learn how to ask questions, see the other person’s point of view, and create a connection. Make connection your primary goal rather than resolution – communication first, solution later. Your efforts to become a better speaker and listener can create the foundation necessary for problem solving and result in deeper, richer relationships.
Please see my article on listening Effective Communication & Listening.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin, Texas
Effective Communication – Speak Respectfully & Directly – Article © 2009

Power of Acceptance and Gratitude – Feel Freedom in Relationships

Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves, and, under a just God, cannot long retain it. ~ Abraham Lincoln: Letter to H.L. Pierce, April 6, 1859

Couple UpsetRelationships are sometimes a quagmire of emotion, misunderstandings, and unmet expectations. Rather than feeling free and joyful, we often find ourselves feeling trapped and frustrated. I sometimes hear people lament, “I was really happy before we got together. I think I’m better off alone.” Despite the challenges of relationships, we all have boundless opportunities for intimacy and joy in a partnership. It’s just a matter of practicing what really works and giving up those things that get in our way.

The main ingredients of healthy partnerships
are effective communication, compatibility, authenticity, commitment, and love. The “secret” element, however, is acceptance; it’s a hidden but integral part of every other ingredient. Acceptance truly helps all relationships because it is a gift of freedom.

Living in Austin, Texas, can be difficult in the summer heat.
Couple UmbrellaInterestingly, when I ask people about it, they generally have an easy-going attitude. The reason for this is that they see it as a “natural” occurrence, a fact of life. Yet those same people don’t see relationships in the same light. When we think about it, people agree that failures and emotions are a part of life. We intellectually understand no one is perfect and that even our best friends will sometimes let us down or get angry with us. Unfortunately, when it actually happens, when one’s spouse or girlfriend becomes highly emotional or behaves contrary to his desire, the response is frequently frustration, surprise, and resentment. Emotions and mistakes in relationships are natural but we often don’t see them that way.

Acceptance in relationships
says, “People in my life, including those I’m closest to, are going to make blunders, and more than occasionally will be angry, sad, depressed, or scared. I accept this as natural. I don’t condone the mistakes of others, but I don’t judge them either. Instead, I practice compassion and seek to understand them. I see emotion as part of the tapestry of life, something we all are learning to deal with. I don’t shy away from emotion; it’s life. I’m also not a doormat: I practice dealing with the ups and downs of others as effectively as I can. I speak up about wrong-doing. I listen to others’ frustrations with me with a willing ear, but I don’t tolerate abuse.”

Acceptance leads to freedom
Child and Balloon in relationships because one is no longer tied down by the bonds of expectation and demand. A person can still desire and hope for certain outcomes; but with acceptance, he frees himself from the result, whatever it may be. Acceptance is the gift of freedom to others and to oneself.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin, Texas
Freedom in Relationships with Acceptance – Article © 2009

Key Elements to Active Listening: Effective Communication

For when you come to think of it, the only way to love a person is not … to coddle them and bring them soup when they’re sick, but by listening to them and seeing and believing in the god, in the poet in them. ~ Brenda Ueland

The first element of communication, speaking,
is impossible without the second, listening;Couple Woman Listening to be a good speaker you must be a good listener. We all want to speak; and even more, we want to be heard. When we become good listeners we create the possibility of a captive audience – people who want to hear what we have to say. In his essay, “The Statesman,” playwright Henry Taylor poetically expresses this idea: “No siren did ever so charm the ear of the listener as the listening ear has charmed the soul of the siren.”

Listening, however, is a big challenge;
even when we try hard our unconscious mind still thinks, “Soon it will be my turn.” We swim in an emotional hotbed of thought and experience, and it’s difficult to quiet its demands long enough to hear and understand what someone really means. Add to that the fact that the other person may not be clear about his own message!

Become a listening artist.
The art of communication is about creating and strengthening Couple Sunsetrelationships. An adept listener strives first to understand others and second to create a feeling within others of being understood. Your best goal is not to find a solution to whatever problem you may have with someone; the ideal goal is the tapestry of connection which is a result of putting aside for a moment your own frame of reference. A solution is much easier to find once you’re on the same page. To become competent at listening, learn to remain in the listener role until you have a “meeting of minds.” Respond and speak, but remain in the listener role. This means you don’t get to express your point of view! What you have to say may be important, but don’t do it until you’ve created a bond, a sense of oneness.

We sometimes struggle
acknowledging someone’s point of view out of fear of losing our identity or fear that we may somehow become compromised. Recognition of someone’s ideas doesn’t require agreement; its intention is a dance of understanding. Acknowledging someone with sincerity puts him at ease, helps him feel less vulnerable, more open. We often become defensive, feeling that someone is attacking us. Approach communication with the notion that another’s beliefs are merely that; they are her personal ideas, and as such don’t have anything to do with you or anyone else. In “The Four Agreements,” author Don Miguel Ruiz says, “Others are going to have their own opinion according to their belief system, so nothing they think about me is really about me, but it is about them.” His “Second Agreement” is concise and powerful, “Don’t take it personally.”

Create listening music.
Be curious; ask questions toCouple Talking Lake better grasp the other person’s meaning. Don’t defend, justify, or criticize. Do not explain how your perspective is correct or why your actions were valid. Do not ask questions meant to invalidate another’s thinking or to validate your own ideas. Be authentic, not “sweet.” True listening is not a passive enterprise but an active extension of yourself into the heart of another, which in turn invites and draws him out into a song of rapport.
Listen; you would be wise!
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin, Texas
Effective Communication & Listening – How to Listen Actively (article) © 2009

Luke 8:17-18

17”For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open.
18Therefore consider carefully how you listen. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he thinks he has will be taken from him.”

Being Present in the Moment

… striving to find meaning in one’s life is the primary motivational force in man. ~ Victor Frankl

 

We all constantly dealEye Info Overload with an abundance of information, both external and internal. We hear and feel the voices of purpose, anger, sorrow, motivation, greed, joy, fear, hunger, illness, health, intuition, sex – and these are intermingled with a second cacophony of friends’ suggestions, the force and taste of nature, the requests of loved ones, the demands of work, the internet, the pressures of society, an endless profusion of influences clamoring for our attention.

 

Each voice wants to be heard and acted upon, and it is most important that you find a means to effectively distill and wisely select those that are most helpful and in alignment with your spirit. To do this requires one fundamental decision: to identify and name that which you choose to live by. This may be a single word or a mantra. It may be love, joy, I am a child of God, I am true to myself, I am peacefulness, or I live in harmony with life.

Our minds are often an incessant stream of useless clutter that feeds on itself and creates even more clutter. I call it clutter because the “thinking” we do doesn’t serve any meaningful purpose; it doesn’t help us, but in fact sets us back. We think about things that once happened and over which we have no control. We also daydream about a life that has no basis in reality. I’m not suggesting that dealing with the past or setting goals is useless, I’m referring to the uselessness of going over things in our minds with no true goal. Stop doing this by learning to be present.

Learn to focus on the reality of the present moment:

  • Focus your attention on your breath. A problem with many of the things we “see,” is that we have preconceived ideas of them. Breathing is something we’re likely to be neutral about.
  • Hear the actual words that are being spoken. We generally interpret what others say because of expectations and their emotions. We can however learn to focus only on their words.
  • Respond to events with peacefulness. Even though you may feel a certain way about events, you can learn not to respond emotionally but with curiosity. Curiosity can help you see things as they really are.

Practicing these simple ideas will help quiet your mind. As you do so you will find yourself increasingly in harmony with people and experiences. This in turn brings you in alignment with your spirit and your true destiny.

 

Today, right now, seek and name your destiny. Use this simple and powerful action to serve as a guide to inform all your choices. It doesn’t mean you won’t make mistakes; it isn’t a panacea but a beginning in taking charge of and finding meaning in your life. It is a clear identification of who you aim to be.

David Cantu

Life Coach Austin Texas

Seek the Truth: Aim for Destiny © 2009

 

Matthew 7:7

Seek and you will find…

Personal Integrity, By Definition

But what is happiness except the simple harmony between a man and the life he leads? ~ Albert Camus

Integrity
is often defined in moral terms but we can also think of it as wholeness or oneness. In this sense, a person of integrity is one in his entire being: his thoughts, emotions, speech, actions and spirit are all in alignment.

Many of our struggles
in life are seemingly a result of external circumstances and relationships. Regardless of the source, a confused response to hardship, a lack of internal unity, will almost certainly make matters worse. Saying one thing but thinking differently or feeling one way but behaving opposite is difficult for us and integrity at these times can appear daunting and impossible. However, the uncertainty and pain are much worse. What keeps us stuck is the familiarity of the feeling. Despite the pain it’s often more comfortable to remain with that which we recognize than to face the unknown.

You’ve lived there
too long! We all have. The fear of change is only an illusion. Choose integrity today, be one within yourself. This way lies freedom and joy.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin Texas
Choose Integrity Now © 2008

Tao Te Ching
(from chapter 42)
Ordinary men hate solitude.
But the master makes use of it,
embracing his aloneness, realizing
he is one with the whole universe.

Time is Only an Illusion

The distinction between past, present and future is only an illusion, however persistent. ~ Einstein

Time is a measure
of change. It is like many wonderful inventions that help us better communicate and interact with each other. Law, government, money, space, time and countless other ideas can be useful in making sense of the world, our relationships with each other and life. Time is a man-made idea. It has no intrinsic existence – in reality, time does not exist – only the present moment is real.

The past, like the future,
exists only in our minds. It certainly does one good to study history and to review one’s past but only as an aid to experience peace now. Instead, our egos endlessly recreate perceived wrongs by others and our own failures and shortcomings. We imagine moments long dead and thereby imprison ourselves in anguish. In the same way, it can be useful to plan for the future, set goals and focus one’s energy on manifesting a joyful life. Rather, we drown in fearful and egotistical illusions of futures unreal but in our minds. We abuse life by fashioning times that are not real.

Only in this moment
do you have the opportunity to seek the truth, experience reality, take heroic action, find love and know God. No other time exists.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin Texas
Time Is in Your Mind There’s Only Now © 2008

The Talmud

Who forces time is pushed back by time; who yields to time finds time on his side.

What is Marriage All About? Dangerous Ambivalence or Joyful Commitment?

Marriage is our last, best chance to grow up. ~ Joseph Barth

Marriage brings great rewards
of loving intimacy and heart-wrenching emotional turbulence. We frequently cope with this apparent conflict with ambivalence, which makes true joy in marriage impossible. Concerning love, you cannot be of two minds and yet hope to experience her riches. Time and again we discard commitment in marriage before we’ve unearthed its great treasures of self awareness and humility. We opt for divorce as a means of dealing with the pain. Yes, there is a time to let go and a time to remain. But know that emotional pain is not the problem; it’s the symptom. It’s a call for healing, growth and understanding. Make a commitment to oneness and you create the possibility of experiencing true love. You can move beyond the doubt and hesitation by looking honestly into your heart. As you deal with your own fears and failures you will see your partner with greater clarity and compassion. This is the path of surrender and vulnerability that leads to joy in marriage or letting go in peace. Your commitment to love lights the way past suffering to wisdom. We are all connected in love and marriage is our best chance to manifest that truth.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin Texas
Marriage – Dangerous Ambivalence or Joyful Commitment? © 2007

1 Timothy 1:5

…love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.

Embrace the Power of Surrender

The greatness of a man’s power is the measure of his surrender. ~ William Booth

Concerning relationships
, surrender does not mean giving up or defeat but a commitment to love. To yield is not always a sign of weakness – it can be an indication of great strength and wisdom. This is because a fearless refusal to fight rests in the awareness that hostility is a formula for pain and suffering. Regardless who wins in a war everybody loses.

Most of the fights
we experience are with friends and family. Confident surrender – especially in these situations – says I love you and I refuse to fight or hurt you. It also says I refuse to believe that you mean me harm. The interpretation of attack is one of the biggest mistakes our egos make in relationships. Surrender acknowledges one’s own shortcomings and other’s, and it either atones or forgives. Its power is in its ability to heal and create peace. We all have the power to surrender; we need only the courage and discernment to practice it and to realize its effectiveness.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin Texas
The Power of Surrender © 2007

Bhagavad-Gita
(from chapter 18)
Give me your whole heart,
Love and adore me,
Worship me always,
Bow to me only,
And you shall find me:
This is my promise
Who love you dearly.

The Illusion of Danger, See the Truth

The most dangerous thing is illusion. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Rarely in life
are we truly in danger. Nevertheless, feelings of anxiety, stress, self doubt, loss and fear frequently intrude in life. Thoughts of danger lurking around corners are a learned response that has calcified into habit. When you were small the world looked big and scary. It may even have been truly unsafe and dangerous for you. But that’s over; the threat of attack that you are now dealing with is in your mind. The evil you dread is your ego’s fear – of being small, oppressed, discounted and over burdened. Your fear is based on the illusion that you’re weak. The truth is that you’re powerful; you need only to realize that truth. Embrace courage and passion. Put your thoughts and energy into these things and the danger will surely vanish – it was never real.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin
The Illusion of Danger © 2007

Joshua 1:9

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Learning to Trust Others and Yourself

You may be deceived if you trust too much, but you will live in torment if you don’t trust enough. ~ Frank Crane

Trust
has more to do with self confidence than with the behavior of others. We generally know what to expect from the people in our lives, so how they behave isn’t the real issue. The point we often ignore is that our fear to love, to forgive or to act assertively in life is a much bigger problem than what others might do to us. Rather than focusing on the shortcomings of others it’s far more valuable to develop strength of character within ourselves. To move from an attitude of mistrust to one of confidence you must know who you are: the one who creates and is responsible for your life. The more you genuinely accept responsibility for your life, without guilt, shame or self punishment, the more you will trust yourself. You will then be free to trust others because you will have confidence in yourself to make wise choices and to handle the vicissitudes of life.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin Texas
Trust Yourself to Trust Others © 2007

Tao Te Ching
(from chapter 33)
Knowing others is intelligence;
knowing yourself is true wisdom.
Mastering others is strength;
mastering yourself is true power.

What is True Personal Power?

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure . ~ Marianne Williamson

True power
isn’t a one way street; it isn’t about mastering or defeating another. That is self-aggrandizement or hatred. When we attempt to enforce our will on others we breed distrust, fear, and antagonism both within ourselves and others. The need to dominate others is indicative of a feeling of lack within oneself and attests to one’s sense of weakness rather than power.

True Power seeks
responsibility rather than control because otherwise it degenerates into self-gratification. It encourages and works in cooperation with others. Real power is open, seeks understanding and is willing to yield. This is because one who is aware of his power knows that he has much to give and is not run by fear.

Love has no fear
and does not attack but understands and forgives; this is power. Ego, on the other hand, is run by fear and selfishness. We move beyond fear to power by nurturing the abundance of our being as we give freely to others. As we do this, we come to realize our beauty and majesty. The source of my power is the light within my being that is in all people. And power is the shining of that light on the world.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin
What is True Power? © 2007

Matthew 5:14
(NIV)
“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden.”

Learn to Listen Better

You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view–until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it. ~ Harper Lee “To Kill a Mockingbird”

Good communication
requires connection and understanding. To create that, we must not only speak effectively but also listen well. Poor communication begins by focusing single-mindedly on making our point or on being right; we fail to understand the other person. To listen well I should be actively engaged and curious – I must ask questions. We might not agree with one other, but by seeking common ground I make understanding and accord far more likely. I look for what’s going on beneath the surface; I listen not only to the words and thoughts but also to the emotions. I’m considerate of the needs of others as well as my own. Real communication begins when the person I’m speaking with feels acknowledged and understood. By grasping another’s perspective, I create a connection. As a result, I’m more likely to gain trust and to create a reciprocal response; I’m in a better position to express my own thoughts and feelings. In order to be heard I first must listen.
David Cantu
Life Coach Austin Texas
Learn to Listen Well © 2007

Matthew 13:16
(NIV)
But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear.

You CAN Change People – Myth?

Be the change you want to see in the world. ~ Mahatma Gandhi

It’s a myth
that we can’t change others. Within everyone’s soul is a great desire to create, to love and be loved, to relish life. As we embrace this passion we transform ourselves and thereby change others. Our every thought and action is like a fingerprint on the universe, yet more subtle and very powerful. Focus your energy on a happy, fulfilled life and obstacles will arise, but rarely with the intensity you have imagined. Remain steadfast; relentlessly face your fears. You will find joy and unlock a secret to life – within every challenge is a key to greater understanding. Evolving into a creative and abundant being requires rewriting your contracts with life. Each revision brings about an increasing sense of integrity and confidence with which you impact others and expand your circle of influence. We are all here to manifest our spirit; as we do so, we change the people whose lives we touch and the world in which we live.

David Cantu
Life Coach Austin
The Change Myth © 2007

Luke 6:42
(NIV)
…first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to
remove the speck from your brother’s eye.