When Help is Refused

Happy Monday everyone!

I’ve decided to make my blog posts more frequent and plan to write every 15 days, so I hope it works and that you enjoy the content!

This time I’d like to write about help from another perspective, as I’ve came across some situations in which I’d found myself at a dead end. As much as we read and discuss about offering help or accepting help from one another, there are times when one’s gonna stop and ask him or herself “wait, what if this person does not want my help?” I guess that’s how the expression “help me help you” was created?

In my home city in Brazil, unfortunately it is common to see beggars and homeless people in the streets, and they usually receive donations from pedestrians or people who live or work in the neighborhood. However, I have seen these people – who we believe are poor and would accept anything -refuse donations, and not just due to shyness, but instead, with aggressive gestures, even throwing the given food on the ground. Although there are plenty of explanations for what I’ve described, my aim here is to express that what we see or think is not necessary right, and sometimes we believe we are helping someone when we are actually annoying the other party.

Examples aside, I would like to explore the nuance of offering help to those who do not want help, also known as “unwanted advice”. I believe everyone has experienced this, on both ends. I can relate to this very easily, as I am aware of my behavior, which turns into preaching sometimes (I am working towards change in this aspect). In my case, I may even irritate friends and family with my energetic speech while I feel I am doing no harm to the person.

On the other spectrum, it seems like some people behave in a certain way that leads to unwanted advice, such as complaining and nagging about things they don’t really want to change. I am sure you – who are reading this now- know or had worked with someone with such behavior, say, the “complainer”. Moreover, some people even go further to ask for advice but regret they’d asked when they have to listen to the truth. Suddenly a defensive side is shown and the advising party becomes the bad cop. Complicated situation, isn’t it?

Don’t worry, we are humans and most of us don’t like negative feedback. Then what’s the solution?

In my opinion and from my experience, I believe that role models work wonders over advice. Because the secret behind change is taking responsibility towards one’s own life and decisions. Remember when we were younger and rebellious? No? Ok, when I was younger, I disliked every time my parents asked me to do something for them, regardless of how good a class or a habit would represent to me in the future.

Nevertheless, I would be very diligent towards activities and things I thought were good to me. Have you ever had an idol or a favorite singer you felt inspired to follow? It’s the same concept and this is something interesting we should use as adults as well. We must have role models – famous or ordinary, so we feel inspired and take responsibility towards our actions. The power to decide and change, when it’s originated from within can do miracles, while being told or advised by someone we don’t admire just makes us feel weak, incapable and annoyed.

Feel free to try this method and let me know if it has worked for you. When you are 100% committed to a decision without anyone else telling you what to do, you will go further with your goals and feel good about it.

Lastly, in my last post I mentioned there would be an announcement soon, and I am thrilled to inform that I have been working in partnership with a good friend on a podcast series! I will publish all the details in my next post, so stay tuned.

Hope you get inspired and see you soon!






2017 Summary

Hello Everyone!

Looking back at the past year, I am glad that it is over in a sense that it was a busy and tough year for most of us, and to be honest, I was desperately craving some rest.

If I had to review my accomplishments and lessons learned from 2017, I think I could summarize it as self-learning year, as I’d had the opportunity to learn more about spiritualism (which is different from religion) and focus on developing new skills in order to improve myself. However, although it sounds beautiful in writing, it is a continuous and ongoing process that I would describe as painful and demands a burning desire for change.

Exactly, CHANGE. Coincidentally, I got the book “Change or Die” as a Christmas gift from someone who had no idea I was going through that very same process, and I feel it was a sign that I am in the right path. Ok, getting back to what I was saying, it is mandatory to have at least the wish to improve, change, or have a slight idea that something different needs to be done. And the amazing aspect is that anyone could benefit from this, from a successful person to someone who is broke, as long as there is an awareness of such situation.

As a life and career coach, I deal with a wide range of coachees who seek assistance to achieve personal and professional goals. All of them own a common quality: the desire to change their status quo regardless of their beliefs, profession, gender or age. Ironically, I realized I was neglecting my own life and procrastinating changes while I was helping my coachees, friends and colleagues.

Little did I know that something so simple ended up causing me to feel tired and unmotivated at times, until my body started to emit signs that I needed to slow down and take a rest. Unfortunately, it took me a few months to notice them until I hurt my leg and took months to recover, while it would have taken only a few weeks under normal conditions. Actually, that was only the trigger to the entire “self-learning” process, and I realized my body and mind wanted to tell me “Suzana: it’s time to rest, whether you want it or not.”

My aim here is to warn you to listen to what your body tells you. Gladly, I am healthy and  nothing really serious had happened to me, but it could have if I kept ignoring my inner needs. I had always been a cheerful and energetic person but I felt exhausted for a couple months last year and even didn’t feel like myself at times. In addition, the most shocking part was when a friend said she was afraid I was getting depressed. After that, I decided I was going to review my life and agenda, and even my daily workouts had to be cut down for me to reach a more balanced life. Yeap, even healthy habits can cause stress if it becomes an addiction or when one surpasses his/her physical and mental conditions!

I apologize for not sounding so positive in this first post of 2018 and I am not saying it’s bad to help other people, but we gotta be feeling well before taking care of someone else for instance. I just wish I knew it before!

Anyhow, I hope I am able to help those out there who are in a similar situation, or struggling with something at the moment. You are not alone and I would love to hear your story!

Wish you a Happy New Year and soon I will announce some big news here!







Stubbornness Vs. Determination

As an inventor, Thomas Edison made 1,000 unsuccessful attempts at inventing the light bulb. When asked how he felt about failing a thousand times, Edison replied, “I didn’t fail 1,000 times, but the light bulb was an invention with 1,000 steps.” Do you believe Edison was stubborn or determined?

Thomas Edison was determined. Because he attempted a thousand different ways in order to invent the light bulb instead of trying the same method and giving up in the middle of the process.

It sounds obvious but how many of us have insisted in a mistake or wasted time (and money) trying to achieve something and neglecting to try alternative forms? Perhaps no one has ever called us “stubborn”, but deep down we don’t really need someone to tell us that, do we?
Stubbornness may sound very bad to our ears because we tend to have prejudice towards this word and immediately associate it with someone who is very conservative, old school, unpleasant or even narrow-minded. 

Truth is, anyone at some point in their lives might have encountered a situation in which they were resistant and stubborn and there is nothing wrong with that as long as it doesn’t cause you deep sadness, great disappointment, permanent giving up or fear of failure.

Then what is the solution to our daily problems? Determination.
A determined person has a target and will do anything and everything to reach it. However, please note that the objective must be clear as water, or all the work involved will be disposable. Besides having a defined objective, it takes discipline and organization to follow the strategies towards any goal. That is why determination is key to getting anywhere, moreover, if one is not aware of the importance of reaching the target, it will be very easy to get distracted and give up in between.

On the other hand, a stubborn person with a clear goal would only be successful by chance, or if he/she is luckily a genius. I affirm this because again, how can one reach a goal by trying the same method repeatedly, but failing to realize that some adjustments are necessary. I would risk to add that a stubborn person is also lazy and proud. Lazy because is too comfortable in a situation and ignores the need to change or learn a skill, and proud because lacks humility to recognize something is wrong or ask for help.

There is nothing wrong with taking longer than expected to achieve a goal, as long as one is trying different alternatives and learning during the process. There is no such thing as “failure” when you are having fun doing it. You will eventually get somewhere, even if it’s not your original destination.

Happy weekend!

The Challenge in Time Management


Can we control time? It is common to hear that one would like the day to have more than 24 hours, but do we really need more hours or reschedule our activities? Time management is still a challenge for many people and extends to both personal and professional agendas.

You are a busy professional with many tasks and believe that if you had more time to finish them you would be fine. Wouldn’t you be handled more responsibilities then? Finding time is an universal complaint and it is common to hear students and stay-home moms claiming that their lives are hectic, causing them to feel stressed. But “feeling stressed out” is just the beginning of something more serious if not detected early.

Stress is not just a mood or temporary situation, but a disease. A disease that may lead to heart-attacks, strokes, mental disability and even death. In fact, it is ironic because we are the only responsible for our level of stress, so technically we are causing this to ourselves. How? By being unable to manage our schedules and not learning or improving skills.

There are several techniques to become more organized and take control of your 24-hour day. Some of them are very easy to apply, such as making use of technology or eliminating distractions. Endless books and courses are available on the topic of Time Management, but how come many still struggle in finding time to work and enjoy life? Because each individual is unique and there is no universal recipe that applies to all.

 A life and career coach assists coachees with restructuring their agenda and helps identifying the key issues and designs a customized list of tools for time management. Another key-point is how diligent and motivated the coachee is to make such changes and succeed in time management.