Her mentor called me a few days earlier. “Jenny, I have a referral for you, but this one is going to be a challenge.” I like challenges, so I asked her to tell me more.
This mentor proceeded to tell me that for years her student, who has now graduated and moved into the workforce, has caused havoc in her parents’ home. She challenged her parents (okay), tortured her siblings (fine), and about a year ago…threatened one of her siblings with a sharp object (okay, really not fine.) Her father (finally) told her daughter to leave the house and to come back once she has chosen to change, to stop tormenting the family, and instead be a contributing, respectful member of the family. Daughter left, went into therapy (not daughter’s idea, but the only way she would be able to move back home…and she really wanted to be home.)
Now this daughter is in the workforce, and she still has not chosen to change. She still blames her parents for all of her problems. She constantly complains to her friends and threatens to hurt herself. Friends have no idea what to do with her and are scared for her. Her mentor (the one who called me) has finally put her foot down and said, “Lea (all names have been changed), I am done with you. After having listened to you, helped you, supported you and given support to your friends so that they can help you, I am done. I am drained. You are an adult now. You have a job. It is time for you to be in charge of your own life! I cannot help you anymore.”
Lea was shocked, she did not expect that from her beloved, trusted mentor who always stood in her corner. Shaken, Lea agreed to do something. She agreed that something needed to change, but she could not do it herself. Her mentor recommended me.
“Ruth,” I said, “this young woman requires therapy. In fact, the whole family would benefit from family therapy.”
“I know, but they’re not doing it, Jenny.”
“Okay, so why did you think of me, Ruth? You know how I work. Although I am also a social worker, I much prefer coaching, which is why I became certified in it. I am outcome-based and work with clients who are ready and willing to do the work.”
“Because, Jenny, on the one hand you are gentle and caring, and on the other hand you are professional, have high expectations and have clear limits and boundaries. That is what this young woman needs.”
“Okay, tell Lea to call me to set up a complimentary consultation so that we can see if we are a good fit and I can tell her what a coaching program and working relationship look like.”
Lea calls (big win) and we meet later that week.
“Why are you here here?” That was one of my first questions for Lea. She didn’t expect it nor did she know how to answer it.
“I want to change,” Lea answered.
I continued. “What do you want? Meaning, what do you want for yourself, for your life?”
This question totally stumped her. Like many individuals, Lea was not used to being asked this question. She was used to people either telling her what to do, or more likely in her case, what not to do. Like many people, Lea was not used to thinking in this way. As I pointed out to her, what she was more likely used to was blaming others, and complaining about everything that was wrong with her life, her parents, her siblings…etc. etc.
“Where has all that complaining and blaming gotten you?”
“Nowhere,” Lea stated flatly.
“That’s not very far, is it?” I responded.
And then I told Lea one of the most important lessons I learned in my own life, a lesson that had changed my life forever (for the better) once I embraced its profound power.
“Lea, I believe that things can change for you. I believe that things can be better. I believe that you can be happy, have a great relationship with your family, and create a great future for yourself, including a fulfilling and successful career and fulfilling and loving relationships.”
Lea’s eyes widened. She was listening intently now.
“There’s only one thing you are required to do. It’s something that I did too, and once I did, everything in my life changed for the better. Want to know what that one thing is?”
“The one thing you will have to do – and not because anyone is forcing you to, because I will never tell you what to do. This one thing is something we all have to do if we really want to be happy. This one thing is: you have to be willing to take full responsibility for your life. Once you do that, then you can learn and incorporate all of the skills to create joy and fulfillment in your life, career, and relationships. I can teach you how to take personal responsibility and what that looks like, but you have to be the one to choose to take personal responsibility for your life. You have to be willing to say goodbye to the complaining and the blaming and take full responsibility for your success and happiness moving forward. If you would like to work together, it is from that place that we begin.”
Lea said she would think about it. If Lea is ready, I am confident that she will move forward.
How about you? Are you ready for change? Are you ready to improve your life, your career, or your relationships for the better? Consider letting go of the blame and instead start taking personal responsibility for your life, happiness and fulfillment moving forward. I am 100% sure that it is possible. And I am also sure that I can help you, if you are ready and willing to make that choice.
In support and admiration,
Upcoming UnleashingU! Workshops
- Wednesday, November 1st, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Discover Your Strengths Seminar for Young Professionals – FREE Introductory workshop, Ma’ale Adumim (Seminar continues for 3 more weeks: Nov. 8, 15, and 22.) Register here.
- Thursday, November 9th, 1 p.m. How to Stand out as One IN a Million, and not Just One of a Million, workshop, Professional Women’s Networking Forum, AACI, Jerusalem
- Wednesday, November 15th, 8p.m. FREE Webinar – The First 3 Steps You Must Take to Get Clear on Your Career Direction & Stop Wandering Around Aimlessly Trying to Figure it Out.
- Wednesday, November 22nd, 8p.m. Parent Toolkit: Essential Skills for You to Guide your Adult Child to Happiness, Success & Fulfillment, Free workshop, Efrat
- Wednesday, November 29th, 8p.m. Parent Toolkit: Essential Skills for You to Guide your Adult Child to Happiness, Success & Fulfillment, Free workshop, Ma’ale Adumim