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  • Ricka Robb Kohnstamm

What is non-negotiable for you right now?

I notice that at times it feels difficult to pull apart my expectations of myself from others' expectations of me.

No matter where you are stuck or overwhelmed, how does remembering that you get to decide your own "non-negotiables" support your optimal health?

And I notice that with a lot of the people I work with, as well.

One person feels the strong pull of her mother's dominant voice - expectations about what is working and what is not, how money should be spent, how children should be disciplined, how her daughter's house should look, how holidays should happen, and the list goes on and on, without ever asking her daughter what she wants for herself. It leaves the daughter feeling anxious, confused and overwhelmed.

For another, it is workplace with growing expectations, leaving her feeling overwhelmed and depressed.

And for another, it is a partner that pulls too far, over and over again, leaving him feeling compromised.

They are all afraid of losing something or someone important to them if they stand their ground.

But what about losing themselves? What is negotiable and what is just not?

Reflexively, many people deflect or move into conflict.

But a more effective way forward is to take personal responsibility by identifying feelings and needs with core values as the anchor. The the "non-negotiables" start to become crystal clear.

If a core value is "integrity" - then truth-telling is non-negotiable for the executive with the demanding workplace. As we work together, we create new opportunities for to align her behaviors with her beliefs.

And if a core value is "love", then increasing his own capacity for compassion becomes a non-negotiable for the compromised husband. We work together to pre-think which tools support that on a regular day in, day out basis.

For the young mom with the controlling mother? "Family" is a core value, so learning to negotiate holidays in a way that doesn't compromise family unity is key.

One of my core values is "courage." Watch me walk that talk.

I am in the drivers' seat of my own life and I have the responsibility to decide, for me, what is non-negotiable.

Reach out to me if you are having trouble untangling what is non-negotiable. Learning to listen to your own wisdom and putting that into words is hard work and it is an essential component of optimal health. Turning towards optimal health is a choice, one you can make for yourself.

Hello, I'm Ricka.

Ricka Kohnstamm Executive & Physician Coach Profile Photo

I'm a Nationally Board Certified (NBC-HWC) Integrative Health and Wellbeing Coach. I specialize in working with physician leaders, corporate leaders, non-profit executives and their families to navigate complex work and personal issues so they can strengthen their relationships, heal, and feel hopeful about the future again. 



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