Risk and Reward

I’ve recently learned of the passing of a few people who touched my life.

Over the years I’ve developed friendships with some women who were much older than I, and saw them as honored, trusted friends and advisers. These women had good, happy, long lives – cause to celebrate! Yet I feel just as sad as I would if the circumstances had been different. In one case it was different. One of the people was a man I ‘saw’ only on Facebook, although his being a contemporary of mine made it harder to accept. It was so unexpected.

Are you someone who is comfortable speaking about death, eternity, transitions, goodbyes, or does the sense of loss and unknowing cause you so much discomfort that you ignore it? I don’t know if it’s something I’ll ever feel comfortable doing, but it’s a necessary part of living a compassionate life, isn’t it? We have to learn how to comfort each other – or at the very least, simply be with someone in need of support.

Transitions and goodbyes are not always about death, although some of us treat them as if they are and are just as scared to experience them. Do you construct strong walls around your heart in order to save yourself from the possible heartache of a relationship ending? Do you believe that the pain you will feel will be so intolerable that you couldn’t possibly bear it, so you decide you’d rather not risk it at all? The unfortunate thing is what you are actually giving up is not the pain of separation, because you don’t know for sure it will end – and end badly at that. What you are absolutely losing out on is the joy you would experience by being in the relationship! I am willing to bet that would outweigh the sadness, but you’ll never know it.

What if the emotions you fear having down the road are actually not as intense as the suffering you are subjecting yourself to now, in anticipation? What if an emotion in its pure form, without the resistance that adds an extra weight, is actually more bearable than the angst you envision that makes you hide?

How would your life be different if you take action from anticipation of joy rather than assumption of sorrow?

When I had the honor of being a full-time foster mama I took that baby out for a walk every day, and every day, as I was pushing that stroller I met women who said that they’d always wanted to foster. When I asked each of them why they weren’t doing it, 90% of them said, “I could never become attached to a baby and have to let it go.”

Our lives are a series of meetings and partings, with various time intervals and intensities of association in between. After the baby went to another home I cried for a week. One week. If I’d decided ahead of time that a parting would be too much to bear, and that I couldn’t engage as a foster mama at all because of it, I would have missed all the joy and laughter I experienced for four months– and that is what I will carry in my heart for the rest of my life!

After a while when you protect yourself from ever feeling negative emotions you’ll also be insulating yourself from experiencing all the good! You need to feel some discomfort in life in order to appreciate, understand, experience, the contrast of the good. Allow in the love, laughter, joy! Right now, take a moment and affirm to yourself:

Emotions enrich me and I am willing and able to feel all the emotions that a full life brings!

Your True Self Can Shine!

Wow, here I am about to write my second post in a row. Really in a row, not with a year separating them. I’m on a schedule and I’m stickin’ to it!

I’ll admit to you, I’m feeling trepidation. Not because I don’t want to write to you, because I am taking a huge step across the valley of fear that in the past has stopped me from achieving my goals and dreams. That voice in my head (I call her Nellie) is screaming, and my heart is pounding. Writing per schedule rather than per inspired whim is one way to show up for myself.

What if, rather than letting it stop me, I allow myself to feel all the feels and keep on going? What might happen? I guess we’ll all find out at the end of this post, now won’t we? ‘Cause I’m going forward, with or without Nellie’s approval!

What will it take for you to make the changes necessary to have the life you want? This was a question I asked myself over and over before I ever sought out personal coaching, and when I figured out the answer I was able to take action.

There were two pivotal points for me to finally make a start – the first was the moment I realized that I had lived in three different states and had many, many different jobs and friends and first dates. I had changed all of the circumstances in my world over and over, and I was still having the same results. It occurred to me that if my life were a science experiment I was the only constant, and in that moment it clicked – if I wanted my life to be different I had to be different. If I wanted my life to change I had to change. And this led to the second pivot –

I didn’t have to change “myself” as if there was something wrong with me. That thought scares off a lot of people from ever self-examining at all – “Nope, can’t look in there, I might find something horrible, so I’ll stay over here and believe I’m perfect and my life is in the hands of other people.” It keeps people scared and sad and stuck. And I don’t believe it’s true. There isn’t anything wrong with you, although there may be something in the way you are presenting yourself to the world that is giving the world the wrong impression of you.

I used to display behaviors that were simply not supporting the way I wanted to be in the world. And they weren’t even truly mine, they were things I’d picked up from others and allowed to overlay the person I truly was. Rather than changing “myself” what I really needed to do was shed the weight of this wrong behavior and allow “mytrueself” to shine.

Remember, I believe that you are in exactly the right place and this is exactly the right time. So right now, take a moment and affirm to yourself:

I am creating positive change in my life right now.

Take Affirmative Action Toward Love, Dating, Marriage

Welcome back! You’ll see by the dates, that I am writing this, my second blog post, pretty much one year from the first. This was not an intentional marketing strategy 😉 – but sometimes you have to follow your own heart. And sometimes you get to ask for a do-over. So… may I please have a do-over on my start?

The past year has been one of immense laughing, learning, creating and unfolding. It’s also been one of crying, failing, demolishing and hiding. And that’s okay. Actually, it’s better than okay. Why? Because I’m here, feeling stronger and more ready to move forward toward my goals than I’ve ever felt in my life – and even through all the seeming turmoil of the previous year I achieved one of the most important goals I’d ever set – I was a foster mama!

I awoke this morning thinking about love and gratitude and knew that today was the day to begin again, because the ideas I’d like to share with you in the coming weeks and months are all about that – love and gratitude.

What if, rather than falling into the trap of allowing your unguarded thoughts to be filled with fear and judgment until one day you wake up in a life you don’t like, you consciously decide to fill them with love and gratitude? I don’t know about you, but that’s a life for which I would gladly jump out of bed! Every. Single. Day.

You’ve probably heard of the word affirmation, although you might have either no idea, or the wrong one, about what it is and how to use it.

An affirmation is not a magic word like “abracadabra!” that you say once and suddenly there are bunnies spilling out of hats. It is not a magic phrase like “You get three wishes, and no wishing for extra wishes!” and suddenly you find yourself riding a silk carpet like a sled through the stars.

Affirmations are statements of possibility constructed in the present tense. Their intention is for you to practice replacing the unbidden, habitual, negative thoughts that whisper to you all day and make you believe you’re negative with intentional, fresh, new, positive ideas that will elevate your thoughts and affirm your right to be happy, healthy and whole. Replace those negative whispers with positive shouts of joy and affirm who you truly are!

Loving, expressing gratitude, affirming your right and ability to have joy in your daily experience – none of these is a one-time thing, each is a daily practice.

Our daily habits help us maintain the status quo. I want your days to be better than average, because days grow into weeks, that grow into years and then a lifetime. I want you to make conscious choices to allow you to live the life you want, rather than settling for the life you got. So right now, take a moment and affirm to yourself:

All of my choices allow me to live the life I want.

Define Success in Romantic Love and Marriage

Welcome to my first ever blog post! My intention is to share ideas and inspirations in a way that may bring you a different perspective. And a smile.

I want all women and girls to step up and stand out for who and what we are. I want to help women and girls succeed. How do we as women succeed when for generations success has been defined by men? What if more women aren’t considered successful, not because we can’t achieve the same success as men, but because we don’t want to?

What if we get to define success for ourselves rather than trying and failing to fit our round selves into society’s square holes? The generally accepted measure of success is the acquisition of large sums of money. The bigger the pile the greater the success. Are you turned on by the idea of accumulating money just for the sake of accumulating money? If so, go get it! Go get lots of it! I’m not, and I know other women who aren’t.

What I AM excited about is what I can DO with the money I accumulate! As a matter of fact, I already know who my foundation serves (women and children who have left abusive situations), and who it’s named for (my parents). That’s motivation; having a strong why. Why do you want to be successful in your business? (for me it’s so that I can help as many women as possible through my work and fund my foundation). Why do you want to start a new career? Why do you want to change your job? Why are you getting up at 5 AM and writing for an hour before you take your child to daycare and yourself to work? It’s probably not just so you can be sitting on a bigger pile of cash than someone else. For a lot of women money is simply the how to get to their ultimate why. What motivates you? It’s allowed to be different than what motivates other people.

I’m passionate about women creating massive amounts of success. We each deserve to live fully and abundantly in our purpose. And women make up approximately half the population of the planet. Would any sports team succeed if half the players were held back from playing their best game? When women succeed we elevate all of humanity. The first step on the ladder of success is for a woman to define it for herself. The second step is to hold up a mirror so she can see that there’s an area of her life in which she’s already succeeded and she’s really close to doing it again. Success tools are transferrable.