Habits for Self Medicating Can Become Addicting

Uncategorized Jul 10, 2020

There are a thousand ways we humans have come up with to self-medicate, but they are all ultimately a trap of our own devising and lead to diminished lives. One executive I worked with used to medicate with retail therapy.  When I asked her about it, she said, “This is how I medicate. When things are not going well, or I have a tough interaction with one of my bosses, I take a break. I slip out and go shopping. Until now, I just thought it was a normal break and getting away from it all. Now I can see … it’s medicine. It’s a connection. I have a connection with retail.

Another person I knew was addicted to Fantasy Football. All he needed was a little stress, something to make him feel a little down, and he could lose hours on his computer. Any golfers, hunters, fishermen or sports enthusiasts listening?

Another executive I worked with was late for a dinner meeting. When he arrived, he said, “I have a confession.”

“What?” I asked....

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What I've Learned After Being in Pain

Uncategorized Jul 09, 2020

If you've tuned in to The Dr. Cloud Show this week, you've heard me talk about the knee replacement surgery I had last Thursday, and during my recovery,  I've learned that all of the stuff we talk about on the show is so true, especially in a handful of areas. 

I had surgery in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, and visitors aren't allowed in the hospital at this time, so I was alone for a few days, kind of in isolation. There were nurses who were there to administer pain medication and whatnot, but other than that, I wasn't allowed to have my wife with me, and I couldn't have visitors. 

Generally, I'm the best "alone" person. Believe it or not, I'm an introvert! I love my alone time. I never thought that being alone would actually be a problem for me, and I honestly thought I'd be just fine in the hospital. But here's what I learned. 

When you're in pain, what happens is, it goes into this subjective experience. It sits in the present with you. It doesn't...

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Keep Your Money. I Want to Help You.

Uncategorized Jul 08, 2020

From the messages I've received over the past several years, I have an understanding that people have a deep desire to be in control of their lives. It's especially affirming when they know that God is also behind that idea, too.

I created Boundaries.Me to give you easy, instant access to coaching from me. I want to be there to walk alongside your journey as you navigate conflict and pain in your life, and come out feeling equipped, empowered, and encouraged on the other side.

Here's what you'll get when you join Boundaries.Me:

  • Daily coaching from me
  • A private support community where I'm leading conversations
  • Assessment tools to help put you on a path towards healing
  • An intuitive search option to help you find courses and conversations you want to watch
  • Categories of courses that are divided into the big three areas of your life - emotional, relational and performance - for easy access and better accountability
  • An entire library of more than 300 conversations from me

You can start...

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What to do When You Have a Boundary-Resistant Spouse

Uncategorized Jul 06, 2020

A boundary-resistant person refuses to acknowledge any wrongdoing and will not accept correction or feedback. The basic attitude of someone who resists boundaries is this: "I should be able to do whatever I want to do in life." Ultimate freedom is the highest value for such a person. But boundaries dictate that you cannot do what you want all of the time.

When confronting someone who violates boundaries, remember that sometimes ignorance is the cause. Your spouse may be crossing your boundaries without knowing it. Always approach the issue from this perspective first. If your spouse accepts the feedback and repents, the conflict will already be on the road toward resolution. But if your spouse resists, consider these steps:

1. Gather around you a circle of friends from whom you can draw emotional support during the time of conflict with your spouse.

2. Make sure you are right with God and growing closer to Him.

3. Identify the specific issue that is the source of conflict. What...

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The Person Who Needs the Most Help Doesn't Always Ask

Uncategorized Jul 05, 2020

Have you ever heard yourself say, "Whatever possessed me to say yes to this in the first place? Why didn't I just say no?" Or, after negotiating a deal, have you ever thought, "Why didn't I ask for ___? I could kick myself!" Chances are, you're not alone, but if it happens, it poses a problem. It reveals that sometimes you and your words are not on the same page.

You desire one outcome, but your words take you to a different one.

Do you catch yourself responding to requests with, "I don't think I can _______" instead of saying, "No, I cannot do that," leaving the door open for them to push back?

When I say you have a relationship to words, that may be an idea you have never thought about. But what we find is that in the depths of people's souls – where true behavior and its resulting success or chaos originates – there is a relationship with certain words. The nature of that relationship dictates a lot of what happens in people's lives. If the relationship is good and...

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When Hanging on to Hope Will Hurt You

Uncategorized Jul 05, 2020

When you consider the past and come to grips with the fact that it is hopeless to expect something different in the future, then you have the kind of hopelessness that will motivate you to move from a mere wishing to real hope. How do you get this hopelessness?

You must take the past performance of the person, businesses, or whatever, and project it into the future:

  • Do I want the same reality, frustration or problem six months from now?
  • Do I want this same level of performance a year from now?
  • Do I want to be having these same conversations two week or two months from now?

If the answer is no, then it is time to ask some other questions that get you to the real anatomy of hope.

  • What reason is there to have hope that tomorrow is going to be different?
  • What in the picture is changing that I can believe in?

The difference between hoping and wishing is that hope comes from real, objective reasons that the future is going to be different from the past. Anything other than that is...

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What To Do When You Don’t Know What To Do  

Uncategorized Jul 03, 2020

Whenever I have heard someone say “I don’t know what to do,” it usually means much more than that. The words imply that the dilemma is just one of information, as if knowing the “what to do” would make it all different. But the truth is that these words are rarely said in a situation where one little tip will make it all better. Instead, they are usually said at a moment when someone has literally reached the end of themselves and feel as if there are no more options. In sum, they are at the end of hope. 

Whether the circumstance has to do with a relationship that is not getting better, a person who is won’t change no matter how hard you try to help them, a business problem that seems unsolvable, or even changing a pattern of behavior that has overcome you, the feeling is the same: “I have tried all I know to do, and done all that I know to do. And, nothing is helping.” At...

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The Wrong Reason to Say Yes

Uncategorized Jul 02, 2020

If anyone had it together, it was Jason. He had a good job, beautiful wife and two children whom he loved. He exercised regularly and looked it, and he was always one to keep in touch with friends and family members.

But one day out of the blue, a deep depression hit Jason so heavily, he could hardly get out of bed. It made no sense to him. He came to see me.

We talked for awhile about Jason’s snug and untroubled life before his breakdown. We gradually uncovered that Jason’s structured lifestyle was basically a way to send off a lifelong depression. He had grown up in an alcoholic and abusive family, where he’d lived through all sorts of chaos and crises.

His activity and responsibility saved Jason. Because no one else in the house washed his clothes, prepared meals and budgeted money, Jason learned to. He became a 30-year-old at the age of 9.

Jason did the right thing, not because he was selfless and loving, but to stay alive. The depression inevitably caught up...

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The Most Difficult Person to Set Boundaries With

Uncategorized Jul 02, 2020

Learning to be mature in self-boundaries is not easy. Many obstacles hinder our progress; however, God desires our maturity and self-control even more than we do. He’s on our team as an exhorter, encourager, and implorer.

One way to begin developing limits on out-of-control behavior is to apply a boundary checklist:

1. What are the symptoms?

Look at the destructive fruit you may be exhibiting by not being able to say no to yourself. You may be experiencing depression, anxiety, panic, phobias, rage, relationship struggles, isolation, work problems, or psychosomatic problems. All of these symptoms can be related to a difficulty in setting limits on your own behavior. Use them as a road map to begin identifying the particular boundary problem you’re having.

2. What are the roots?

Identifying the causes of your self-boundary problems will assist you in understanding your own contribution to the problem (how you have sinned), your developmental injuries (how you have been...

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Don’t Keep Rescuing Someone — Let Them Face Consequences

Uncategorized Jul 01, 2020

Allowing someone to suffer logical consequences is another way of getting them to realize their need for grace. Ideally, we can do that by confronting them, have a difficult conversation and hope they have a willingness to face reality. But sometimes people cannot (or do not) hear the truth of confrontation, and they remain stuck. At those times we often have to allow reality to touch their lives.

Too often in our lives, we protect people from the harsh realities of logical consequences that would force them to see their need for grace and what it can provide. Either we feel sorry for them and bail them out, or we fear them and try to appease them. No matter what the person’s plight, we must help him face the truth. And sometimes that means letting him deal with harsh realities.

This isn’t necessarily about discipline and correction, but how it’s important to see that sometimes our “helping” may keep others from experiencing the tough realities that...

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