526. Discover the Power of Your "Guiding Words"
Amy Smalarz, PhD
Amy had been in a consulting position she enjoyed for 10 years. One day the staff was called together and told that their division president had just been fired. It was the nudge she needed to step out on her own. She quickly discovered she had a lot to learn.
Amy Smalarz, PhD, is a women’s empowerment coach and author of Living Intentionally: How to Bring Balance to You and Your Family. She hosts the podcast, Living Intentionally, and is a speaker, teacher and contributor to the Huffington Post. All of these things are the building blocks for her core values and driving ambition: helping people discover how to live intentionally, and empower themselves in their personal lives and business. The information and experience she provides helps women uncover and rediscover their truest, best selves and bring that to everything they do in life.
How Did You Start Using Your Talents?
Amy’s grandmother and parents taught her about empathy and activism at an early age, through their own advocacy for people who were voiceless or shut out of the system. She also learned how to listen and connect the dots in what people were saying. Her first job out of college was in customer service at Blue Cross Blue Shield in Massachusetts. “In that job I learned a lot of the challenges with the system because all I heard every day was complaints, and how the system wasn’t working for the folks who had insurance coverage. That, in and of itself, was a huge learning experience. It was like drinking from the firehose!”
The Most Impactful Turning Point?
After working for years in corporate consulting, the staff was called together one day and informed that the president of the U.S. division would no longer be working there. His replacement was someone Amy did not respect. This gave her the nudge to line up some clients, leave the firm and start a practice of her own. Now in her fourth year, she has continued to earn credentials, including becoming a high-performance coach.
The Most Powerful Lessons Learned?
“We get so stuck in the monotony, with the blinders on. There is too little time for getting back to who you are as an individual—not as a collection of labels like parent, student, office worker—but as the words that guide our daily lives. I learned my own guiding words are Present, Passionate, and Bold. One of the joys I get from working with people, especially in workshops, is to ask them to write down their own guiding words. At first, they just sit there. Then all of a sudden they kind of smile, as they realize, “Yeah! That’s who I am!” Then, we work on turning those words into actions. When you do that, even if you’re not in a job you love, you can bring YOU into that job and love doing and being YOU.”
On His Bookshelf
Steps to Success from Amy Smalarz, PhD
1. We all have that voice inside of us that tells us our potential. Learn to recognize that voice – not the voice that only gives negative chatter. Following that positive voice’s guidance brings amazing results.
2. Give yourself the gift of time and space. Even if you start out with a minute or less, that’s probably more time than you’re currently giving yourself.
3. Find the words that describe you, your guiding words. They are not labels or categories, they are the words guiding your actions on a daily basis. They help remind you who you are and what drives you.
Connecting With Amy Smalarz, PhD
Your website URL: http://amysmalarz.com/
Amy’s “Living Intentionally” Workbook at amysmalarz.com/
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