Oak Communications
January 2014
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Which of these scenarios do you relate to?


  • You sent an email to a colleague or friend and haven't heard back from the person.  
  • You met someone at a party and you hit it off. You gave him/her your phone number and you are still waiting for a call.
  • You had a job interview and you thought it went well. They haven't contacted you in the time frame they indicated.
  • You prepared and submitted a report that you thought was awesome and haven't heard a peep from your boss/client about it.


Which of these responses have you experienced? 


  • You wonder if your colleague/friend is mad at you for some reason.
  • You decide that the person didn't like you after all. You think to yourself, "How could I be so foolish/deceived/hopeful to think that this might be the right person?"
  • You got your hopes up for the job and now they aren't interested. You berate yourself, "I really must have blown the interview."
  • You start to wonder about the quality of the report after all.


In each of the scenarios above, you have created ideas in your mind of what might be going on. You don't really know whether these ideas are true or not, but you manage to get yourself worked up about the situation.  


You may think, "I am not worthy. I am not good/smart/attractive enough." All of these thoughts are based on very limited information, and yet we start to believe them. 


In fact, a couple of days later, your colleague emails you back and lets you know that he has been sick and out of touch. The person at the party lost your phone number and has been madly trying to find out how to get in touch with you. The interviewer calls you back a week later and says that they have gotten behind in the job search and want to bring you in for a second interview. And, the report you submitted receives full praise, but not until a month later. 


You realize you have worried needlessly. You created something out of nothing and caused yourself undue stress. 


Here are some questions/strategies to help you slow down the story-building machine in your mind. 


  1. What do you know for sure?
  2. Would you like to get more information? How can you get it?
  3. Choose something from your stress management tool box (mindfulness, breathing, walk around the block, get out in nature, get some exercise, sip tea, talk with a friend, etc.)
  4. Think about when else you have imagined a scenario that didn't turn out to be true. 

As a coach, I can help you look at how you think about the situations that arise in your life. Which responses work for you and which get in your way? By paying attention to the way your mind works, you will begin to understand and be able to shape your thoughts. You will become a happier, less stressed person. 


What a great way to begin 2014! Call me for a complimentary coaching consultation today. 


Happy New Year, 



Lagniappe (a little something extra)
I recommend the TED talk by Andy Puddicombe: All it takes is 10 mindful minutes who talks about the value of sitting quietly and focusing on the present moment.

The Key to the Castle Book News
Key to the Castle: Zen and Travel Stories of Trust




I am excited to present my book in the San Francisco Bay Area in April. Please join me!

Oakland, CA - Book Reading and Signing
Sunday, April 6, 2 - 3 pm
Mountain Yoga in Montclair
2071 Antioch Court, Suite 100

San Francisco, CA - Book Reading and Signing
Date and Time TBA

 Please "Like" The Key to the Castle Facebook page to learn about future events.

Have you read the book? If so, please consider writing a review on Amazon or Smashwords.

To read reviews of the book, please visit The Key to Castle web page.

Thank you!


I am pleased to offer a new workshop along with Alyce Morgan Wise:

Moving Through Life with Energy and Ease
A Workshop for the Mind and Body 

Tuesdays - March 11, 18, 25, April 1, 8, 2014
6 - 7:30 pm
Wise Body Pilates at Camelia House
708 Jefferson Blvd, Lafayette, LA


In this five-week workshop, you will move your body and mind in new ways utilizing Franklin Method, mindfulness, and coaching practices. You will gain clarity, motivation and energy to explore and create possibilities for change.


For more information, please contact me. 



I am offering two workshops through the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Continuing Education Program.



Writing Down Dementia: A Writing Workshop
Tuesdays, March 11 - April 1, 10:30 am - noon

Executive Coaching: Is It For Me?
Thursday, March 27, 4 - 5:30 pm

To learn more and register, click the title of the course above.

Coaching Services  

Photo of Sue Schleifer
Photo by Robin May


Have you been thinking about working with a life/career coach? Want to connect? 


Give me a call to schedule a complimentary coaching consultation.   


Check out what a few of my clients have said about the coaching experience. 


"Sue truly cares about her clients' goals and brings that passion to her work as a life coach. With her fresh perspective and eye for possibility, she helps me find creative solutions to seemingly intractable problems.
Plenty of professional and creative people would benefit from working with Sue, and I particularly recommend her to anyone who needs to get 'unstuck'."
Medical Editor and Fabric Artist


"A year ago I met Sue for our first session. Through her probing and listening we pinpointed areas that, with specific attention to my thinking and choices, help me:


  • be personally more effective
  • move towards a more balanced life

My spouse and employees have noticed a positive change, as have I."

Sales Manager-Fortune 500 Company


"Since I first hired a coach I have been a happier person and a more successful businessman. My company has become much more successful, our employees have had the opportunity to grow to the fullest of their capabilities and everyone seems to enjoy each day of life much more than in the past."



I would love to be a resource for you too!

Let's talk. 


Sue Schleifer, M.A.


510.316.3319 - cell
Oak Communications

Lafayette, LA and throughout the country

510.316.3319 - cell

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