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Ingrid Martine and Rick Maurer - The Un-Game Book Interview

Be Patient with Yourself : You Are a *Chef-d’Oeuvre in Progress

Un-Game Principle: Self-reflection and self-observation are the keys to our personal power and the freedom to be ourselves.

Do you get excited about people seeing and acting on new possibilities? Like when you glimpse the wonder in a child’s eye the moment they see… yes, they can!

And are you generous with children as they’re learning to make their way? I imagine you probably are.

I’ve spent a lot of happy energy and time learning to make my way and to shed the burden of self-talk that hinders me from designing my life and the goals that light my fire. That’s why I was a teacher (I taught French, German, English, and Spanish) and now am a coach having spent the better part of 35 years as an educator/consultant/trainer in various business environments. And of course it’s no accident that I wrote The Un-Game: Four-Play to Business As Unusual; how people learn, including how I learn, is a source of endless fascination for me.

Many people I meet through coaching are very, very (did I say ‘very’?) hard on themselves. They want to get things right away. They are impatient and self-condemning. They have a lot of self-limiting chatter, much of which catches them unawares. When learning how much this self-limiting chatter dominates their thinking and action, people attempt to get rid of the chatter and to change what they’re doing (or not doing). In trying to get rid of it, people get to see just how familiar and seductive their pattern of self-condemnation is. They condemn themselves for not succeeding to rid themselves of self-condemnation!

Sounds like a bad dream, doesn’t it? No exit.

I’m not promising you an exit from self-limiting chatter. If you’re willing to consider the possibility that your self-limiting chatter is your biggest opponent on life’s playing field, and that you actually need it (After all, if you have no opponent, can you even have a game?!), what I can promise you is that you can learn to outplay your opponent. And it can even be fun. After all, who doesn’t love to win?

To outplay your self-limiting chatter (Our Buddhist friends call it monkey mind. Don’t you love it? It’s so visual.), you need to be willing to become self-reflective and self-observant. If you’ve been reading my blog, you already are. But self-reflection is a relationship with yourself that you keep deepening. And to self-reflect means to have something to observe about yourself. That’s why I like to challenge my (and your) thinking. It gets us to our unexamined assumptions about how we are and how life is. And that’s where the change we’re looking for is hiding.

To facilitate challenging yourself and your standard and customary thinking and your monkey mind (self-limiting chatter), I will be including links to some of the interviews I’ve had on my book. Good interviewers, like good coaches, know how to ask good questions. Whether you’ve read The Un-Game or not, the interviews are likely to make you think about the most fascinating subject in the world: YOU! I’m not saying this to promote narcissism on your part. Being self-absorbed is not at all the same thing as being self-reflective. But that is a different subject for a different day. In the meantime, be patient with your impatience. You’re a chef-d’oeuvre in progress.

*Chef d’Oevre  = Masterpiece

Photo by Dutch artist Peter Klashorst, entitled “Experimental”

Ingrid Martine, MA, PCC, Coach and author of The Un-Game , Four-Play to Business as Unusual, a show, not tell tool for coaches, managers, and “will do” teams, works with organizations and individuals to empower them to move their lives from a 7 to 10 at work, home, and play.  For her FREE report, “Reap the Harvest of a Quiet Mind:  Empower Self, Empower Others”, or “Management Training for Business as Unusual”, visit:, or connect with Ingrid at: and

One Response to Be Patient with Yourself : You Are a *Chef-d’Oeuvre in Progress

  • susan eberspacher says:

    I make a concerted effort to scan myself and as my observer, I find a lot of my thoughts are in the past. I ruminate and analyze my every action and thought, replaying and perfectionizing,(if that’s a word) always seeking a way to have said it better, or try to view it from a different perspective.
    So now I have read about thought addictions, which says that by focusing on a recurring thought you can avoid painful feelings – mood altering addicted to abstract thinking.
    Lately, when I find myself doing this, I ask myself what present feeling I am trying to avoid. What emotion is trying to be recognized? I am better at catching my sadness or anger, etc – emotional stuff- and go quicker into my head. This living in my head stuff pulls me away from the present moment of pleasant things like outside walking in nature or cooking a good meal and focusing on the ingredients.
    Of course the answer is the balance and being patient with myself with self-compassion, but I thought you would graciously, as usual, give me some additional feedback. Looking forward to the links on interviews. Thank you

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