Maria Mellano, the human behind Launch SOUL, is a fierce woman on the divine path of imperfection, a Nam Myoho Renge Kyo chanter of 25+ years, an Internal Family Systems informed worth and wellness therapist and coach with 20+ years experience, a psychodrama certified practitioner applicant for trainer, certified money, marketing, and soul coach and certified sacred money archetypes coach. She lives with her husband Reza and their kitty Molly between the US coasts.
There are many things to consider when starting private practice, which I’ve been doing since 2008. From starting off small, in a home office in Somerville, MA, while working in a hospital, to building a full-time practice relocating to downtown Boston and later subletting space to other practitioners in the Boston financial district, I’ve learned a lot.
Unfortunately, everything it takes to run a successful private practice, I didn’t learn in graduate school or therapy professional training programs. It wasn’t being taught, and to my knowledge, it still isn’t. I’ve learned what I’ve learned from experience, trial and error, other therapists who’ve been willing to collaborate and from friends, family members and business professionals.
So, if you’re a therapist considering opening a private practice and feeling overwhelmed with how to start, trust me, you’re far from alone and there are many resources out there to help – including coaches, consultants and books. I’ve personally enjoyed supporting many clinicians launch and build their practices successfully along the way. Continue reading “Private Practice Nuts & Bolts for Success: Doing Business As”
We think it is. A dog’s power on health cannot be understated. Dogs simply make people happy. Period. They’re company, comfort, fun, protection, security and make people laugh and feel valued.
The greetings at the door make you feel wanted and needed and unconditionally loved and accepted. Literally, dogs don’t care what you look like, smell like, weigh… they only care about your presence. Continue reading “The Power of the Pooch”
YOU’re with YOU more than anyone through your life. This is true for us all, from the moment we’re born to the moment we take our last breath. Essential to living a courageous life, nothing could be more important than investing in YOU. YOU’re truly your best investment.
There are essentially 3 meanings for the word, invest:
to commit (money) resources in order to earn a (financial) return,
to make use of resources for future benefits or advantages, and
to involve or engage, especially emotionally.
Many of us, myself included, learned to put others first. That it’s polite to prioritize other peoples’ wants and needs / thoughts and feelings. That it’s bad to be impolite. I was socialized this way. In fact, it was expected of me, seen as selfish not to be this way.
Perhaps it’s the belief that to invest in others is to invest in one’s security or worth. In this way, prioritizing others becomes a self-preserving strategy, which could be construed as investing in oneself. But, is it?
The impact of not putting others first can be fear / panic, shame and guilt inducing, so putting others first can also be a protective measure against these difficult feelings.
Prioritizing only others can be a recipe for resentment – which is a mixture of disgust, sadness, perceived injustice, anger, fear and disappointment. This is basically a path to profound regret, because not investing in oneself over time leaves you without.
Personally, it’s been a journey to unlearn this conditioning to evolve into a balanced practice of setting healthy boundaries and honoring both mySelf and Others – learning Self-Care.
We each have innate capacities, resources, rights, feelings and purpose. Only by investing in YOU by honoring your capacities, resources, rights, feelings and purpose can you fully align with your life’s mission – this is saying YES-to-your-WHY (you’re here). Then, from this YES-to-your-WHY – your alignment allows you to show up for yourSelf AND Others – both/and.
By investing in YOU, by honoring your life’s priorities, while respecting others at the same time, you’re cultivating inner materialism … the inner good stuff… inner treasures… calm, peace and sweetness of heart. This is the essence of Self-Care, true worth. Talk about a return on your investment!
What resources will you commit to YOU now for a return on this investment in YOU? How will you make use of this investment into the future? How will you level up to achieve this? And, what will it cost if you don’t?
Put YOU first! How? Say no. Say yes. Express, play, create, move, dance, plant seeds, nourish your body, mind, heart, soul. Laugh until you cry. Cry if you need to. Dare to be “selfish” – think of it as soul-setting. Listen to your heart. Attend to relationship from here.
Invest in YOU because:
YOU, your life and your mission matters.
You won’t regret building equity in YourSelf.
You could seriously regret it if you don’t… and it’s never too late to make the investment.
It feels good to cultivate treasures of the heart and the more treasures you feel, the more treasures you’ll create. And, the more you’ll be able to show and do for others.
Your life depends on it.
And, you deserve to live your life feeling good, creating good and knowing you matter. And, most of all, the world needs YOU to live your mission.
Developing skills for dealing effectively with gaslighting and its pervasive and insidiously destructive impact is essential for mastering courageous living. Why? Because using tactics to induce vulnerability, insecurity, fear and shame is the modus operandi of the gaslighter. So being brave and skillful when it comes to coping with gaslighting and the gaslighter is critical for success. It’s essential to not only see gaslighting for what it is but most importantly develop resiliency and immunity for rising from its negative impact.
“Feeling fat” is the sensation that seemingly comes out of nowhere that your weight has suddenly gone up exponentially. You know what I’m talking about, right? The “fat attack.” It’s brutal. And to effectively cope with it requires consciously managing your Chi – your energy, your life force, and your mindset.
I think of it actually as more of a “lack attack” – meaning it’s a state of being that results from a deficiency of some kind of nourishment or a belief in lack. Maybe the deficiency is sleep, food, attention, love, trust and/or mindset – meaning a belief in not being enough – good enough, thin enough, pretty enough, smart enough, rich enough, etc.
I believe the most helpful response to “fat/lack attacks” is to explore… to go deeper. Ask yourself, what am I actually lacking such as, am I sleep deprived? Am I food deprived? Am I love and validation deprived? Am I believing a story that’s fear or shame or guilt based? And, is there a story about defectiveness, lack or not enoughness that I’m buying into? Then, really listen. Deeply. Continue reading ““Feeling Fat”? Techniques that Help”
Courageous boundaries are essential to leading a successful life. This is especially true in 3 key areas of living: time, rest and communication. Time is precious. And, one’s relationship with time is a reflection of circumstances, resources, priorities and behaviors – all influencing quality rest… and communication. The ability to set, have and hold quality boundaries hugely depends on how we feel – our mood and thereby, how we orient. When we feel empowered we orient towards that vibration, which rest supports, and we set empowering boundaries, and so it goes…
Values and beliefs underlie what gets prioritized and how we behave. They influence how, why, what and with whom we share. And, it all boils down to time. Basically, we devote time to things and those we care about. And, who, what, why, and how we care about something or someone says everything about who we are, our self-capacities – esteem, worth, identity, and the like. Basically, who and what we say “yes” to and who and what we so “no” to depends on our life condition – and I assert, one’s inner life condition, since how we feel inside is where every personal moment ultimately begins. And, this inner state filters and directs our attention, which is ultimately how one guides their life. This is why every moment counts and mastering mindset is so critical to courageous living. Because how we spend our time is our life. Period. Continue reading “Courageous Boundaries Create a Successful Life”
Heeding the call, I give you Launch SOUL, a blog devoted to courageous living. Birthing and brewing in my being for years, Launch SOUL has manifested to show how obstacles used as opportunities for transformation can create value in all ways. It’s not an expert’s path. It’s simply my path with my Soul that’s perhaps relatable and inspirational for you, reader,to create your own YOUnique life according to your heart’s guidance. So, let the sharing begin…
Now, here we are, about to embark on THE HOLIDAYS!
It started for me with Starbucks’ Christmas Vintage showing up on Nov 1. Feeling slightly taken aback, I posted on Facebook that this had happened while waiting for my order of… Starbucks’ Christmas Vintage. In that moment, after clearly getting sucked in, it got processed as something important enough to post about on Facebook … now, here I am seriously barely believing we’re nearly at the close of 2018. How. Did. That. Happen???