1. “I WISH I HAD MORE TIME”
If you’re constantly saying this, you need to reflect on what really matters to you. “Be clear about the purpose of your life, and spend your time on things that align with your values,” says Ho Shee Wai, psychologist and director of The Counselling Place.

Helen Lee, principal coach and founder of Lee Heiss Coaching, says that people who find themselves always short of time usually have problems with prioritising. But it’s also possible that deep down, you could be using this excuse to avoid spending time with certain people. If that’s the case, you’ll need to examine your relationship with them.

2. “I’M TOO SHY OR SCARED TO TRY NEW THINGS” 
Helen says this happens when you’re afraid of appearing stupid, feeling embarrassed or failing. Fight this fear by thinking of why the new endeavour is important to you and your loved ones – for example, if your child is asking you to try a new activity with him. 

Shee Wai says it’s normal to be anxious about new things. But keep in mind that physically, fear and excitement feel the same – so use this feeling to take the next step.

3. “I DON’T HAVE ENOUGH PATIENCE” 
If you are a Type A personality, you generally don’t have a lot of patience. You are less tolerant of people’s shortcomings, including your own, says Helen.

When you feel yourself getting impatient, practice breathing deeply and empathising with the other party. Shee Wai adds: “Think about whether you have control over what’s happening – take a breath and let go if it’s not within your control. Know that everything has its place and time.”

4. “I CAN’T GET MY POINT ACROSS CLEARLY” 
To get your points across better, you first need to be clear about your thoughts. Helen suggests writing down in point form what you want to say and practice saying it in front of a mirror or to a good friend. 

If you often get carried away by your emotions, “focus on the main point, think through the logic of your explanation, and keep it as clear and concise as possible”, suggests Shee Wai. Don’t be distracted by the other person’s reaction. If necessary, ask for space to finish what you’re saying before the other person responds, she adds.

5. “NO MATTER WHAT I DO, THERE’S ALWAYS CONFLICT”
Try to see things from the other person’s perspective and be open to a compromise. “Search for common or shared goals in this disagreement. The goal is to move so that the two of you are on the same side,” Shee Wai advises.

In some cases, the conflict can be due to an unconscious desire to sabotage yourself, caused by your own feelings of unworthiness, says Helen. “When women are constantly plagued by conflict in their lives, they need to look at their own internal conflict and ask themselves what they are conflicted about,” she says. Spend quiet time alone to discover what is truly bothering you.

This article was originally published in Simply Her January 2015.