Welcome to the Newsletter for ChangeWorks Life Coaching 

Unlike the Lilly and the Rose, It is the mighty Sunflower that
will not be pressed.

Issue February 2006


A Note from Maureen

It's hard to believe that it is already February. We have been
enjoying some mild weather here in Virginia which is great.

I decided to write about the internal barrier of perfectionism
since it can bring any new year plan to a halt. There is a myth
that perfectionists always do things well. However, perfectionist
are often late with deadlines and have difficulty completing
projects. Their perfectionism interferes with the ability to
perform. It's hard to complete a task if you are never satisfied
with the results.

In celebration of Valentine's day, the Life Coaching Corner will
focus on how perfectionistic ideals can also impact the success
of our relationships.

I hope you enjoy this month's newsletter. February is the time we
acknowlege those who are imporant to us. Spend some time during
this month honoring those who have contributed to your life in a
positive way!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Click here to find out more about the myths of perfectionism


What's new- Free Life Coaching Telegatherings

If you would like to attend send an email to and I will send you a bridge number to
make the call.

Each telegathering will discuss further what is presented in the
newsletter. This is great opportunity for some free coaching and
help doing the action plan.

Click here to find out more about my telegathering


Shattering The Glass Ceiling Within- The focus of this section is
to assist women in shattering their self imposed limitations in
order to create a life that fulfills their ultimate potential.

The Barriers within- Perfectionism, "The Martha Stewart

The Martha Stewart Syndrome is not an official syndrome and
you will not find it in the Mental Health Diagnostic Manual.
But since the inception of Martha Stewart's magazine Living,
she has brought the American woman to a new cultural
expectation of perfectionism. Except for the recent jail
time, she has reached iconic stature in our culture as the
ultimate in feminine perfection.

I'm not trying to single out Martha Stewart as a negative role
model, because frankly, I like Martha Stewart. I think she is a
great role model for the American business woman to follow. She
is smart, talented, gifted, imaginative and highly motivated.

That being said there is a downside to the whole Martha
Stewart personna. She has brought us to a new level of
what we expect of ourselves. I'm sure there are a lot of
women who are as gifted as Martha Stewwart, but most of
us are just plain "regular".

I think most women realize the images that Martha Stewart
presents are an impossible standard. But we want the ideal just
the same. We want the dream of a creating the perfect garden, and
dinner tables that reflect the true art of cuisine. But
realistically who has the time? I think most of us are lucky if
we can put together a nutritious meal for our families after
working all day at home or in the office.

The humorous irony of it all is that most women are not creating
the images seen in Martha Stewarts' Living. We just walk around
feeling guilty because were not turning sugar cookies into tiny
snow flakes and making origami out of the napkins we put in our
kids lunch boxes.

Perfectionism has long been a barrier for women and it's a tough
one to conquer. There is enormous pressure from society and the
media to create perfection. Sometimes it's hard to remember that
holding yourself to impossible standards has enormous costs. Most
perfectionist actually have decreased productivity, impaired
mental health and troubled relationships because they cannot let
go of the impossible standard they hold for themselves.

Last month we talked about the failure to plan as a barrier to
change. This is an opportunity to make plans for the coming year
that are based on realistic expectations and not grounded in
perfectionistic ideals. There is a difference between a healthy
drive for achievement and an unhealthy need for perfection. For
more information on the costs of perfectionism visit my blog at

ACTION PLAN Perfectionism is a barrier to change because it
actually prevents success and fulfillment. So, how you tell if
you are holding yourself to impossible standards? Ask yourself
the following questions?

1.Do you have trouble feeling satisfied with my work, life,
husband, children, ect.?

2.Have people in your life complained about your perfectionistic

3.Does it take you longer to complete projects because I you're
never satisfied with the results?

4.Do you avoid doing something you want because you fear failure?

5.What is your reaction to failure or disappointment?

FREE TELECLASS- I will be offering a free life coaching gathering
on the topic of perfectionism as a barrier to change on Monday,
February 13th at 8:30 PM- 9:15 PM Est. If you feel perfectionism
is a barrier to your growth and fulfillment, please join me by
sending an e-mail to stating you want to be
on the call. I will send you the bridge number and access code.
Long distance charges will apply.

Click here and visit my blog to find out more about the barrier of perfectionism:


Quote of the Month

"Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism.
Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be
human can, paradoxically, make you a far happier and more
productive person. " Dr. David M. Burns


Coaching topic of The Month- The "Perfect" Valentines Day

The idea of Valentines Day is great. It's a day to give your one
true love chocolate, jewelry and intimate cards that reflect your
inner most feelings. So, why is there so much disappointment on
Valentines Day?

I think everyone has experienced a disappointing
Valentines Day. You wait all day for the flowers,
beautiful cards and the romantic dinner waiting for you
at home only to come up empty handed. There is so much
expectation on Valentines Day that it is a wonder any of
us have a good time.

Again, I think our expectation of perfection is to blame.
A real honest and authentic loving relationship is not
based on flowers or chocolate but on communication,
mutual respect, caring behaviors, and a little romance
never hurt. Most of us know what would bring out that
loving feeling in our relationship on February 14th. If
you have no idea, that might be you are not tuned into
your partners needs.

The important thing is to have realistic expectations of
your partner. Life is busy and complicated and sometimes
other things take priority. Don't judge whether your
partner loves you on February 14th, 2006. It's better to
look at the relationship as a whole rather than just one
day. Spend valentines day exploring with your partner
each other's needs and desires. Good communication is
really better than chocolate!

If you're not involved with anyone, don't spend the day
feeling sad. Valentines Day is not just for lovers but it
can be a day to express your feelings to those around
you. It can also be a day to spend time doing something
for you. So, enjoy the day!


1. Explore your expectations of your partner. Are they

2.Explore your partner's language of love. Do they tend to show
their love through action, words, ect.

3.How are you expressing your feelings to your partner?

4.Take time to do something for you?

5.Call and old friend or someone special in your life and tell
them you appreciate them.

6.Hug your kids!!!!!!!!


Additional Quotes

Treat yourself on Valentines Day… if you don't love yourself then
you will never be able to love others in a meaningful way."
Catherine Pulsifer, from Valentines Day is NOT only for Lovers


Psychotherapy & Life Coaching Services

For more information about ChangeWorks Psychotherapy & Life
Coaching Services, LLC. Please visit our website at

Good Luck and have a great month!  See you next time!

Maureen Fannin, LCSW

ChangeWorks Psychotherapy & Life Coaching Services 9315 Center Street Suite 204 Manassas, VA. 20110 Phone: (703)626-0381 E-Mail