Being Assertive- A Client Story
As a young child, I was very sick. I had croup for a few years, and my parents would always have to bring me into the bathroom and turn on the shower really hot so the steam could loosen up my cough. I was rushed to the hospital on a few occasions because I wasn’t able to breathe. The feeling of being helpless was very scary to me. Because I was sick, I was a little scrawny kid. I was a very particular eater, which meant I didn’t eat very much! I think this drove my parents a bit crazy. A lot of kids tried to beat me up, I was bullied and made fun of. I didn’t have a leg to stand on. Though I never felt unloved or unsupported by my parents, who were always there for me when I needed them, I was afraid. Time by myself taught me to be very independent. I would play by myself a lot as a child. Inventing games in my bedroom, and riding my Big Wheel all over the neighbourhood. I was happy but probably a little withdrawn and shy. My parents decided to move to Las Vegas when I was 11 years old. They wanted some independence from their parents, and also a huge blizzard made a living in the Midwest even more exhausting. I’d grown up in an idyllic neighbourhood in the Midwest; I walked to grammar school and junior high, and now in Las Vegas I was put on a bus and carted off with a bunch of kids I didn’t know. I didn’t really have any friends for about a year. I was having a tough time. My mom suggested that I take an acting class at a local children’s theatre company, and suddenly I felt very much at home. It was the thing I needed, even though I did not know I did. This really set the course for my career. I was 12. I continued to be involved with theatre all through high school and got my college degree in theatre. I have been making my living as an actor for the last 20 years. I feel incredibly lucky, even though I know I still have a long way to go. In the time, I’ve spent working with Nomi, I’m accomplishing and learning a few key things. I’m learning to be a lot more assertive. I’ve always been a “people pleaser.” Maybe due to the fact that I felt so weak as a kid. I didn’t want to ruffle any feathers or upset anybody. Lack of assertiveness is something I struggle with and I am acknowledging it within myself. I’m able to see clearly the tools with which to overcome it. With Nomi, I have pinpointed my fears and confronted my weaknesses, working on them through the Gates. I can step into my Expanded Self and see what’s going on with me in a very clear and specific way. I’m learning to sit with myself at least once a day and ask, “How am I feeling?” I’ve created goals for myself, and once those are written down I can always see clearly what I’m working toward. I have been able to accomplish a lot of them in the last few years. Being an actor, one of my goals was to be on Broadway. I was able to do that this year. I have set other goals of writing a screenplay and creating work with my friends. All of this is possible when I open my heart to the opportunities I can create for myself. I have learned to be healthily detached from my partner. Early on in our relationship, I would get pulled into her worries and anxieties; I couldn’t be a strong partner for her because I was worried and stressed out that if I said the “wrong” thing or made the “wrong” choice she would get really upset, and maybe leave. I was not comfortable with conflict. But with Nomi, I’ve learned to express and share my feelings, and not be afraid of the consequences. Knowing that they are MY feelings they cannot possibly hurt anybody else, especially if I use the Four Magic E’s—Experience, Explore, Express, Empower—to get clear about them, and then use the Four Magic I’s—I feel, I think, I need, I want—to express and communicate them. Learning assertiveness and dispelling the worry that I may disappoint my wife/ family/friend/colleagues has been at the forefront of my work with Nomi. I feel confident that the more I’m aware of it, acknowledge it, and work through it, it will become just another goal that I can check off my list.
A client story in the book Gates of Power® Actualize your true self, sold on Amazon.
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