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Newsletter - Q4, 2021



Clearly Ambivalent

by Raechel Pefanis


So I am having the most conflicted relationship … with my pajamas.


About three weeks ago, I was out doing a bunch of running around and in an impromptu moment, I bought myself some new pjs that looked warm and flannelly and PERFECT for the coming winter. Except that, now, every time I put them on, instead of being cozy and relaxed, I feel an internal pressure to get back out of them and be productive.


So then I hang them on the hook in my bedroom, and I look longingly at them, vowing that I will relax more next weekend. I put them on, and hope to read a book. But then I take them off again because there is a giant list that can’t get done in pajamas. Some people live their days led by their true north star, their intentions, their three clear priorities. I am currently ruled by my feelings toward my pajamas.


Well, before you go JUDGING me for having lame-ass problems, know this: the pajamas, of course, are a symbol of my psyche. I’ve been having similar experiences of ambivalence with other things, like whether to update my OS tonight or next week, or what to put on the grocery list, or whether to clean the kitchen first or finish a client project. I find myself in the grip of analysis paralysis about the stupidest things ever and then, I’m demoralizing myself each time I look back and see the blazing trail of stupidest things ever that keep catching up with me. Do you feel me? Also, do you know any good coaches?


Ambivalence is apparently a problem that is not just mine these days. Stress in America together with the American Psychological Association recently reported the following state of things, insofar as our collective (in)decision-making abilities. It’s a good news / bad news type of thing:


“…day-to-day struggles are overwhelming many. Prolonged effects of stress and unhealthy behavior changes are common. Daily tasks and decision-making have become more difficult during the pandemic, particularly for younger adults and parents. As each day can bring a new set of decisions about safety, security, growth, travel, work, and other life requirements, people in the United States seem to be increasingly wracked with uncertainty.”

(Source: https://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/stress/2021/october-decision-making)


It seems that this pajama situation is rampant. Should we make plans with that old friend? Ambivalence. Should we quit our job and do something else? Dither. Finish one project or open another? More dithering. Imagine the toll this constant putting off of decision making is taking on our workplace productivity, personal relationships, and mental health. (Check out this great article on addressing uncertainty and paralysis in the workplace.)


What about you - what are your pajamas? In what area of your life are you experiencing ambivalence, procrastination, or dithering? What (or who) do you need in this season in order to be compassionate towards yourself and get clear about your priorities?


Happy holidays, friends. May this year’s holidays be full of peace, calm, and clarity about your path forward ... whether you find your true north while wearing flannel pajamas or something else a little more festive.



What’s new with Red Maple? Updates below …




Update #1 - Our Team is Growing


Please join us in giving a warm welcome to our new Corporate Director, Susanna Muntz! She brings with her over 20 years of experience in leadership, human development and coaching, and has helped countless numbers of leaders, teams, and organizations design their context for resilience, staff retention, and high engagement.


We are also celebrating Adrienne Hafemann’s new role as Clinical Director. With over two decades of experience in psychotherapy, coaching, and collaborative mediation we are pleased to see her give direction to our growing team of clinical practitioners.



Update #2 - We’ve Got Your Back: Counselling & Coaching Services


If you or someone you know is in need of support with mental health, emotional wellbeing, personal growth, or professional development, please contact info@redmaplecoaching.com or fill out a request for coaching or counselling services.



Update #3 - Learn To Coach!


Into the foreseeable future, managers in workplaces must be able not just to drive results, but to also develop people. Red Maple’s Certificate in Professional Coaching is where we bring our expertise to your role, equipping you with the skills used by great coaches. Our next cohort has just opened. Check out our website for more COACHING CERTIFICATE DETAILS.


Dates: April 11, 2022 to June 25, 2022

Tuition Fees: $3,600 plus tax (regularly $7,000)





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