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Ep. 131 – Circumstance

Welcome to Episode 131 of our podcast, where we kick off a 5-part series on the Elements of the Model.

In this series, we explore the powerful tool known as “The Model” and how it can be used to customize your amazing life after divorce.

In this episode, Doreen and Jeff take a deep dive into the elements that make up the model, starting with the first step: the Circumstance. They discuss why circumstances cannot be changed or denied, and provide insights on how to navigate them effectively.

Join us as we unravel the secrets of the model and discover how it can guide you towards the incredible life you deserve after divorce.


Jeff: Hello, everybody out there. Today we’re going to be talking about something we probably have talked a lot about, which is the circumstances in our lives. So if you’re ready, let’s get started with Episode #131.

Doreen: Are you ready to create a life that’s better than ever before? We are Doreen Yaffa and Jeff Wilson, and we are here to give you the strategies you need to create the life after divorce that you deserve and desire. As partners both in marriage and coaching, we use our expertise as well as our own personal experiences to help you make the next chapter of your life the best chapter.

Hey, Jeff.

Jeff: Hey, how are you?

Doreen: I’m great.

Jeff: Good. Looking good over there on the other side of the table.

Doreen: Thank you. Thank you.

Jeff:  Anything new?

Doreen: Oh, lots of great things going on.

Jeff: Yeah?

Doreen: Right. It’s all about your thoughts too..

Jeff: All about your thoughts, all about, you know, how you interpret them, and the choices that we make.

Doreen: Right. So I know you we want to talk about circumstances today.

Jeff: When we talk about the model, and that’s probably the biggest coaching tool that we use that is the model, it always starts with our circumstance.

Doreen: Maybe we should give a one on one on the model.

Jeff: Okay.

Doreen: To start.

Jeff: Okay. Well, first, we have the circumstance, which is the C. And then after that, you’re going to have some kind of thought about that circumstance, which is the T, from any thought, you’re usually going to have some kind of a feeling or an emotion, better known as the F line, the feeling

Doreen: Correct.

Jeff: From that, you’re going to take some kind of action, or an inaction, no action at all. But that’s still going to be some kind of action, which is the A line. And it only makes sense that your actions are going to create the results in your life, which is the our line, the results that you see, no matter where you’re at, those are results that you have created for yourself.

Doreen: Correct. So, and what we can show and we do work with our clients on this is that your thoughts, create the results you have in your life.

Jeff: That’s the bottom line.

Doreen: So if you’re thinking stinking thoughts, you’re probably gonna have stinking results.

Jeff: Stinking, thinking.

Doreen: Right? Thinking. But if you have good thoughts, thoughts that are motivating, that said, set goals have objectives, then you’re going to have the results you want. So when you’re working on basically understanding your thoughts, so that you can create your results, on purpose and with intention. That’s what’s so amazing about what we do and how we coach is that we can really help our clients or, we do help our clients to explore the results in the goals that they’re looking for. And then how you can create thoughts from the circumstance which we’re going to focus in on to create a life on purpose, to create the next chapter of your life after divorce.

Jeff: It seems so simple.

Doreen: It seems well, you know, it takes practice. You know, it’s so easy for us all to live on automatic pilot, you know, not even realizing that we’ve discussed this before. On average, you have about 60,000 thoughts today. So how many of those thoughts are serving your purpose, your goals?

Jeff: How many of those thoughts are autopilot? And just you have them automatically without consequence of your thoughts.

Doreen: Right. So this is where we talk a lot about slowing down, right? You know, coming out of divorce gives you an opportunity to recreate your life on purpose. Right, you can have the thought, from the circumstance, circumstances of fact, it’s your divorce, right? We’ll use that as an example as we explained circumstance. It’s a fact meaning that you got divorced, or you’re getting divorced. It can’t be argued, meaning that the filing was done. The divorce decree is final. You’ve seen it. It’s a fact. Right? That’s a circumstance. And now your thought about the divorce and what that looks like for you moving forward will create your results after the divorce. You can have the thoughts, for example what, let’s think of something. This divorce was so unfair to me, you know, I got the bad end of the deal here. My ex is putting all the negative adjectives you want to. But if you have the thought, for example, that this divorce, you know, was not your fault or that it, you got the bad end of the deal, you’re going to have a feeling probably of what?

Jeff: Well, you’re probably going to be a little bit more..

Doreen: Angry? Sad?

Jeff: Well, if you’re looking at it as you did get the raw into the deal. You’re gonna look at it as anger and revengeful. If you look at it, as you know, the what and the marriage served its purpose, it’s over, it’s through. And now I’m ready to move on to a better life, your thoughts are going to lead to better feelings about your future.

Doreen: Right. And so my point being that your negative thinking about the divorce would lead to negative results.

Jeff: Absolutely.

Doreen: Right? So if you take it all the way down, and you have negative thoughts about the divorce, most likely that’s going to have a feeling such as anger, sadness, regret, that’s going to cause an action or an inaction that’s not going to serve your future self.

Jeff: Right.

Doreen: Your best self. Right. So the focus today really is to dissect what a circumstance is. Right? Because a lot of people, which is very common place, think that a circumstance is something that’s not a fact.

Jeff: Right? They think it’s something that happens to them. It’s almost a feeling or an action that is either in their control or out of their control. And it’s not, it’s really a fact that nobody can control.

Doreen: And I think a lot of times the circumstances is what is happening is that people are thinking that their thought is the circumstance.

Jeff: Exactly.

Doreen: You know, like, I got the raw end of the divorce. They’ll think that’s a fact. Right? They’ll think that because of but they’ll argue with us, and they’ll say “But listen, if you look at my divorce settlement, or my divorce, final judgment, look at what I got” I mean, it’s a fact, I got the raw end of the deal. But it can’t be a circumstance because of circumstance is in essence, a fact, meaning that no two people could say differently could have a different thought about it.

Jeff: Exactly.

Doreen: Okay. So that if you think you got the raw end of the deal with the divorce, someone else who got less of an award, less of the settlement would look at yours and say, you know, what you did pretty well,

Jeff: Or your ex spouse, they may have a different opinions as well to that.

Doreen: Correct. And so we have to be very clear that your thought is not the circumstance. Right? And how you define that, and how you clarify that for yourself is really the very first step.

Jeff: Exactly. But once you do that, you’ve given yourself the power back to be able to control the down flow of that negative thought. You know, so if you’re able to can say that, okay, now, this is not really a fact. It’s based on what I’m thinking, it’s based on my own thoughts, then you’ve just switched on the empowerment switch. And now you can control your actions and your results,

Doreen: And it’s interesting that when we do this work with our clients, how they’ll start to have aha moments, and really start to recognize that their thoughts are not the circumstance, right? And then what happens is, we can gently, when we take that time, and we slow down to do the realization of this, we can now work with our clients to switch their negative thoughts, to more neutral thoughts. Let’s start there. Right, right. And then two more positive thoughts, because your positive results will stem from your positive thoughts. And it I want to beg the listeners out there and I would welcome anybody to come and speak with us about this and let’s try it on for size. That’s what we do in a coaching consultation. When we have somebody interested in coaching with us. We’ll actually do a coaching session with you. Because it’ll be interesting for you to go through one of the models with us, and we can easily pick anything that we’re talking about on any subject. And just, we’ll start plugging it in to one of the lines that we’re talking about.

Jeff: And a footnote here, this isn’t just about divorce, this could be any circumstance in your life. I mean, it’s something that, you know, if you want to become a more positive and a more, let’s say, a happier person, when you understand that circumstances are all around you. For an example, if it’s pouring down raining outside, one person might say, this is the most beautiful weather. I love the smell of the rain. I love the way it keeps the earth clean, and flowers grow and everything. And another person might say “this weather sucks”.

Doreen: It’s dreadful. Yeah.

Jeff: But that’s a circumstance. It’s raining.

Doreen: And so you know, if you take the condition of the weather, the weather itself, the rain is a circumstance, right? It is raining, it’s a fact. And so your thought about the rain will probably end up in how what you’re going to have, if you’re thinking about the rain, and you’re focused in on the rain, which most of us probably wouldn’t be, but for the sake of our discussion, right now, you could have a miserable day. If you’re thinking the rain is miserable, and it’s horrible. And I dislike this, right?

Jeff: It could be going on the boat, that might be a little bit of misery.

Doreen: Or going to the beach or for a walk or whatever it is. Right?

Jeff: But you know, again, and that could play in anything, your job, your career, your friends, I mean, there’s a lot of things where the circumstance is a neutral fact. And some people see it negative some people, see it positive, and some people have no care in the world about it. But it’s a fact.

Doreen: True. So the question is, what are our listeners thinking about? And how would they define the actual find or define the actual circumstances versus the thought about it?

Jeff: Well, I think the main thing they need to ask themselves, is it non -negotiable? It’s something you can argue.

Doreen: You can prove it in a court of law.

Jeff: Yes. If it’s raining outside, you can say it’s sunny and not raining. You know, so it’s an undeniable fact that no matter who you asked, yes, I was filed with divorce papers, right. And that is a fact. You know, my marriage sucked. That’s not a fact. It could be somebody else loved the marriage, and somebody didn’t like the marriage. So it could be deniable. But when it comes to circumstances, they are facts that cannot be denied. So you have to kind of ask yourself, how would somebody else look at this, right? How would my friend look at this? How would my ex spouse or spouse look at this? And if it’s the same answer, then it might be a fact.

Doreen: Correct. Well, I think it’s really helpful. And, you know, with most of these, the thought work that we do. Well, with all of it really. Again, it’s about intentionally slowing down. If you have 60,000 thoughts a day, on average, how many of them do you really recognize, right?

Jeff: That’s why I’m saying they’re mostly on autopilot, and you’re having thoughts about something you don’t even realize you’re having.

Doreen: I think what most people recognize, and I don’t know if Jeff, if you share the same opinion, but from my work with clients, I think, mostly they recognize their feelings, right? They recognize how they feel, they may not be able to define it. And we talk about slowing down and recognizing each part. You know, the circumstance, the thought, the feeling, the action, result, recognizing each one and really understanding what it means. And in our coaching, we do a lot of work on this.

Jeff: I agree with you 100% because of feeling is a sensation, you know, and I think that you experience feelings more than you experience, thoughts.

Doreen: Because if you’re stressed and that you’re feeling you may be feeling it in your stomach, you may be feeling a tightness around your you know, your neck area, it may be hard to breathe, maybe even your heartbeat is more rapid. You’re feeling it physically as well as emotionally, right?

Jeff: Now, when you’re sad. It’s a feeling that could produce tears. It can produce negative emotions that you actually do feel inside your gut and inside your heart. That’s a fact that those are feelings, that you do have sensations over where thoughts happen so fast and so automatically that you just assume that the thoughts are the facts.

Doreen: Correct. So what are some other examples?

Jeff: Let’s see.

Doreen: Examples of thoughts that are good thought of as circumstances.

Jeff: I’m stuck in this career?

Doreen: That’s a good one.

Jeff: You know, a lot of people think that that is a fact that you’re stuck there.

Doreen: Because maybe, for example, you need a paycheck, your kids are depending on your dollars, you know, this is how you survive. You don’t have anyone else who’s supporting you. So you think I’m stuck in my career, this career as a fact? Because you can find so much justification for most thoughts, and most negative thoughts, you can justify it. You know, it’s, when you have a thought that I’m stuck in this career, oh, you’re gonna have lots of evidence surrounding you, and giving you the, what’s the word, I’m looking for?

Jeff: The confirmation, you know, because you’re going against your own soul, you’re going against your own being, if you’re contradicting yourself. So you have to come up with reasons why your thoughts are real.

Doreen: Correct. What’s another one that was a good one about career. Another one might be I’ll never lose weight. So a lot of people, you know, struggle with body image, and I never lose weight. And they’ll have lots of you know thoughts about why that’s true. Oh, I’ve tried all these diets. Oh, look what the scale says, oh, you know, I can’t fit into this. It’s a useless cause no matter how much I diet and exercise, I never lose weight. Like they think it’s a fact. But it’s not. It’s a thought.

Jeff: And it may still be true, because it’s their thought. But it’s not a fact. Right? There’s a big difference there. Because it’s not a fact because they could change their thought and lose weight.

Doreen: Well, and because many people who have issues, or I shouldn’t say have issues, who want to lose weight, or to get in shape, because you know, losing weight is one thing, let’s just say getting healthy, right? Getting to a healthy weight have been successful. So remember, a fact is a fact it doesn’t change? Exactly. So I think that’s one of the ways you can distinguish the two, between a thought and a circumstance, which is a fact.

Jeff: So I think we need to, in the next couple of episodes, talk about the downline of one shoe detail have determined that this is a fact. How do you control your thoughts? How you have the right thoughts that are going to lead you to the right results that you want that serve you and serve the goals that you have in life?

Doreen: Well, let’s do this if we can as a series. This will be series one of five. And so this is series, one of dissecting the model, which is about the circumstance, right, the fact and next episode, if it’s okay with you, Jeff. And we’re just doing this spur of the moment, we decided to speak about circumstances today, because we had a client specifically that was really challenged, understanding the difference. And it took a lot of work for us to get him to see to see that his thoughts was not we’re not the circumstance, right. But once we did that with him, it was like an aha moment. And he is doing amazing. So I think it’s really important that we do these little brief little series on this. And again, welcome our listeners in to come and get coached.

Jeff: Oh, yeah, definitely.

Doreen: Let’s do some practice. Let’s, you know, I always say you have nothing to gain and everything to gain and nothing to lose, you know, to just see, see where you’re thinking, what you’re thinking is about because in like, a troll your thoughts, or you can’t move your thoughts and recognize this and it’s much more challenging to create your life after divorce that you want. You will move a lot faster from where you are today. Let’s assume that it’s not where you want to be right? To where you want to be, if you can do this work, right.

Jeff: And as I said earlier, it is simple. But the reason that coaching is so important is it is not easy. We are programmed to have this stinking thinking the thoughts that we have about something that we feel our thoughts or a circumstance and we’re programmed to have certain thoughts that serve the way we want to feel, we want to be angry. We want to be sad. So to be able to say no, no, no, that’s not what I want, these are the thoughts that I want to have, because these are the new results that I want to have. It takes other people to help you. It takes coaching, it takes a person that knows what they’re doing to really guide you through this, don’t try to do this on your own, it’s very, very difficult.

Doreen: That’s a good reason for us to do this series of dissecting the model and what each of these points are, because, you know, at least it’s something that our listeners can reflect on, and listen to, and work on. You know, and it’s all about, Look, we have to do this as well. You know, we know this, we teach this and we still have stinking thinking, you know, many times it’s a, you know, we have to be our own coaches.

Jeff: We are human.

Doreen: We are human. And so we have to find ourselves like, oh, wait, we’re not getting the results we want. What are we thinking that’s not getting us there? Right?

Jeff: Right. And we always talk about 50/50, and life’s challenges and everything. So it’s something that you have to work on. It’s not something you can be coached on, and a few weeks or a few days, or even a month or so. And then all of a sudden had this epiphany and had this life change. It’s something that you have to constantly work on. You know, so, from today, until next episode, next week, ask yourself, is this a fact? Is this something that is coming from my thoughts? Or is this an actual fact that is undeniable?

Doreen: Correct. I think that’s a great way to start. Between now and our next episode to maybe jot down every day. Just a few, maybe just three circumstances that are facts versus your thought and recognize the difference.

Jeff: And if you jot them down, how about sharing them with us?

Doreen: That’d be great. Share them with the world. You know, it’s great to have the insight from others as well.

Jeff: Absolutely.

Doreen: All right, everyone.

Jeff: I hope you enjoy the episode as I did, and I’m going to go look at my circumstances in my life and, and I’m really, really excited about next episode on thoughts.

Doreen: Beautiful. All right, everyone, have an amazing day.

Jeff: See you next week.

Doreen: Bye.

Jeff: Bye bye. You have the vision of what you want your life to look like after divorce, but maybe you just don’t know how to get there. So if you’re ready to take control of your life and want to find out more about our coaching, visit us at That’s L A D as in life after divorce dash

Doreen: Until next time, have an amazing rest of your day. And remember, yes, you can have an amazing life after divorce.

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