Your A Game in Change and Transition Management

             Your A Game in Change and Transition Management
  • In the U.S. , when we speak of bringing our A game to the workplace, it usually involves focus, drive, energy, and presence. What if your A game was about agility and kindness? No, not how well you played tennis this morning or golf. What if agility was about your emotional response to the unexpected? What if there was a way to increase your resilience to stress simply by being kinder to everyone all day ( including yourself)?

    There has been some very interesting research done on the neurohormone oxytocin, sometimes called the bonding hormone. The more connected we are to ourselves, the more connected and present we can be to others. The more connected we are to others, the more oxytocin floods through our system. The more oxytocin we have in our bodies, the more capable we are able to manage stress and change in our environments.

    When we place the responsibility for our stress management on ourselves, the more masterful we feel and when big crises come along, our crisis management capacity also expands. So one tool for increasing your kindness character is to make a decision for every morning to make eye contact, real eye contact with at least three people you work with and if you live with a family, three people from your family. If you live alone and work alone, set up Skype or face time calls with people you know and really make a connection with their eyes.

    Making a real connection thorugh eye contact will lower your stress hormones and build your capacity for both crisis and change management. You will also experience people trusting you more.

    In my next blog I will talk about building trust and its unbelievable effect on your ability to master change and transition more effectively.

  •  https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/what-i-learned-from-my-grandmother-change-management-italian-galardi

  • Advice From the LIfeQuake Doctor


    Dear Dr. Toni:

    I have been a psychotherapist for twenty years and am in burnout. I like the contribution I make to my patients but am starting to get bored with sitting in an office all day working one on one.  Although I have been a recovering alcoholic for fifteen years, I am finding myself spending a lot of time on Facebook and Youtube. They are starting to talk about social media addictions in the addiction field and I just wondered if you thought there was a link between my boredom and my new “hobby”.

    Your thoughts?


    Dear Jenny:

    I think there is a big link between your career burnout and after work activities. In my LifeQuake model, I discuss that the first stage of change is often accompanied by boredom. Boredom is a transition emotion on the emotional tone scale. If you address it by going into inquiry and observation as to what interests you now rather than focusing on what doesn’t, you can begin to discover clues to your next vocation.

    Since becoming a licensed psychotherapist, I have had several careers that are off shoots to my profession. I became a professional speaker and workshop leader first.  Then I became a talk show host. Then I taught psychology courses at a private college. Then I studied Jungian astrology, which I still use to assist me in working with my clients. Then I wrote a self – help book called The LifeQuake Phenomenon. Then I became an organizational consultant to treatment facilities teaching them change management tools, then I became an advice columnist, and now I am a guest expert to media outlets on helping the world thrive in the midst of economic and climactic upheaval.

    None of these required more schooling or licensing. It does require, in the words of Joseph Campbell, “following your bliss.” I chose to pay attention to what was pulling me in a certain direction and then explored it to see if I felt inspired to create something there. The key is to spend time every day in meditation and contemplation and ask to be shown a message or synchronicity. If you are open, to use the words of Joseph Campbell again, “a door will open that would not open for anyone else.”

  • Thriving in the Midst of Change, Italian Style

    Todays’ entry is more of a Vlog  than a blog. Here is five minutes of clips from one of my talks on how to move through change more playfully, implementing habits from the Italian culture.

  • Ask the LifeQuake Doctor – March issue 2011

    Dear Dr. Galardi:

    I am a clinician working at a treatment facility that primarily addresses chemical dependency.  I don’t want to give too many details because I need this to remain anonymous. I have been working in the recovery field for over twenty years. I feel dedicated to my work and to the residents but our facility was bought by a large corporation and is now being run strictly as a business.

    I don’t feel like they care about relapse prevention with the clients at all. In fact, I would submit that they want the clients to relapse so they will come back to our facility. I have seen certain practices administered that foster dependency on the staff. I have asked my boss for the opportunity to run a group that focuses on their jobs and potentially stressful times when the client returns to their life. He rejects all of my ideas if they run at all counter to the rigid program that they have in place. What should I do? Is it time to quit?

    Frustrated and Depressed


    Dear Reader:

    I empathize with you and commend you on wanting to truly assist in the recovery and relapse prevention of those you serve.  Change does not come easily when corporate policies are in place. Your boss’ hands may be tied from the powers at be above him.

    The key to making gradual change may be subtle. For example, perhaps you might try weaving one of the techniques you want to use that is future focused into the groups you are working with. You might throw out questions to the group that invites a discussion about discovering life purpose. Carl Jung spoke about how important it is for an individual to hear the call of his/her soul. See if that works. If you find that you are still not expressing yourself creatively on your job then you might think about starting a group at night for people in early recovery at a place you rent space and charge them for your time.


    Dear Dr. Toni:

    I am a certified drug and alcohol counselor and have been working in a facility for 5 years. I am starting to get bored with just running groups and am thinking about going back to school to get my master’s degree and become a psychotherapist.  I think I would like to have a private practice and be able to take insurance. I know this could take some time so am also considering becoming a sober living coach which has very little training but does not have the same credibility as someone who is licensed nor can you take insurance.

    I have gone back and forth on this issue. Can you advise me?

    Jason (not my real name)

    Dear Jason:

    You don’t give your age. This I think can be a factor in looking at this decision, given the economic times we are in. Yes, you will not be able to accept insurance but the constraints now with insurance companies make getting a decent wage (factor in what a master’s degree is going to cost you) difficult at best.


    The recovery field is now expanding to include so many different professions in after care.  If you are entrepreneurial, putting a program together that includes you as a sober coach as well as collaborating with a clinician and nutritionist that caters to the upper income strata for after care could be lucrative. Having a license has its constraints because all treatment we engage in is subject to the ethical guidelines of the board of behavioral science examiners.  Good or bad, coaches do not have a governing body.

    It never hurts to take a course in recovery coaching and see if you like that person’s program. It also doesn’t hurt to take one graduate course in psychology at a school that would allow you to do that. See what inspires you.  You shared that you were bored with your job. Notice what parts of working in the recovery field that you like and what parts you don’t like. If you are bored with listening to people’s complaints about their lives, I would not suggest becoming a psychotherapist. At the end of the day, scan back like it is a movie in your head, only notice what things you did that you felt enlivened by.  If it feels difficult to synthesize how the data all fits together, work with a therapist or vocational repurposing coach to discover what your passion is.

    Dr. Toni Galardi is a licensed psychotherapist, career coach, public speaker, organizational consultant, and the author of the book, The LifeQuake Phenomenon: How to Thrive (not just survive) in Times of Personal and Global Upheaval.

    To submit questions for  “Ask the LifeQuake Doctor” or if you would like to consult Dr.Galardi for phone coaching, she can be reached through her website at http://www.LifeQuake.net or 310-890-6832.