Which Comes First the Pleasure or the Passion?

Hi There

I’m sitting in the sunshine on my back deck soaking in the warmth as I write this note. After living in New England for over forty years, it still feels like such a treat to have warm weather in November. It’s one of the simple pleasures in my life.

It’s these simple pleasures that fuel my passion for life, or maybe it’s the other way around my passion for life allows me to appreciate the simple things.

Either way with the holidays upon us along with the joy and fun of the season it’s bound to get busier, people can get a bit crabby, and it’s easy to slip into ‘should’ mode (you know where you do what you think you should instead of what you really want). It’s a good time to pause and take stock of where you are and what’s going well for you.

No matter where you are in the world, I hope that you take a moment today to connect with all the blessings in your life.

Here is a short gratitude poem and a heartfelt thank you for being a blessing in my life.

Grateful Am I

Honoring, Appreciative, Joyful, and Reverent
Gratitude
for personal growth and expansion,
for laughter and for tears both symbols that emotion is alive and well within me,
for the deep soul-full connection with family and friends,
for the solid sense of who I am,
for the intellectual and creative interaction with my colleagues,
for the beautiful ocean and beach that nourish me daily,
for the crazy completely “get you and got your back” support and honest feedback from my friends,
for the love, big dreams, and kinship that is fostered in my tribe,
for the opportunities to share my gifts and give back to my community,
for the easy access to fresh local food,
for the dolphins that play offshore reminding me to play more,
for the sunshine that warms me when I step outside,
for my clients who inspire and teach me and allow me to share my gifts thoroughly,
for love and unconditional acceptance,
for my beautiful little cottage oasis that I call home,
for who I am, who I have been, and who I am becoming,
and for You and all that you contribute to this magnificent dance we call life
Grateful Am I

Please remember to honor yourself in your gratitude, YOU matter….a great deal.
I would love to hear one thing that you are grateful for just leave a comment in the comment box  below

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How to Make Changes That Really Last

In the last newsletter, I shared my yearly practice of choosing a word for the year. I hadn’t quite landed on my word but promised to share when I did. 2016 was spent clarifying what I really wanted(some legacy work going on there) and healing the things that were holding me back. This year I’m ready to move forward again. So here it is my word for 2017 is Action. Webster defines it as “the process or state of being active” and “an exertion of power or force.” As I wrote the word on my whiteboard and in my planner I created a 6 part list:

 

A – Allowing – to take action, I must first allow.
C – Courage – action can be scary remember to use my courage muscle.
T – Trust – always trust my gut.
I – Imperfection- imperfect action is better than stagnation
O – Open – open to possibility, collaboration, new ideas, new formats, new structure.
N – Never let go of my Why.(more on that next time)

This little list embodies what my word symbolizes for me and helps to anchor it in place. There are many reasons that anchoring it is important, but the most important one is invisible. It shifts your energy. The thoughts you think affect your behaviors, that is pretty obvious for most people. If you’re thinking the guy across the room is creepy your behavior toward him will be very different than if you thought he was a well-respected talk show host.

Thoughts also affect cellular function too. Stress-related illness and the placebo effect are good examples. By anchoring in a word every time it is seen, thought about, or heard it registers in your body and brain. The repetition makes your cells and brain react differently, new neuropathways form, and you behave differently. The word begins to resonate in your energy field, brain and your body as movement toward your desired goal. This supports you in subtle but powerful ways. It’s the secret sauce so to speak that helps you move past the old patterns and into a new way of being.

If you haven’t tried the word activity I highly recommend you do, you can find it here.
Questions are always welcome just enter them in the comment section below and be sure to leave your word in the comments as well.

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New Year – New Start Your First 3 Steps

As a new year is birthed thoughts of what to do with it, how I want to show up and what I want to create roll around my brain. Each year I choose a word to help me stay connected to my vision and move me forward. Last Year’s word was E3-Envision-Engage-Express. I used it to help me dig deeper to connect with meaning and passion in a bigger way….last year was full of healing, claiming and shifting. It also helped me choose to go back to school for my Master’s degree with an eye toward some cutting edge research in Energy Medicine.

This year’s word isn’t quite ready to come forward but there is a sense of expansion and transformation…..in pretty much all areas of my life. This process I one I do every year because it works. It focuses me on what I want to create rather than what isn’t working or what I do not like and most importantly it keeps me from becoming complacent. You know the state where it’s just too much effort to actively try and change something.

How can we maximize the energy of possibility, positive change, and dreams to reality that the New Year ushers in?

The dreams we dream, the things we want, and the goals we set all have a common thread. We believe that, in the achieving/having of them, we will feel better. Our natural state of being is happiness(yes it really is!), and we are continually seeking to reclaim more of that in our lives.

Studies show that about 80% of people don’t even think about goals, 16% think about them but don’t write them down, 3% write them down but don’t review them, and 1% write them down and revisit/revise them one guess which group regularly achieves their goals. The revisiting piece is important it allows for adjusting and increases the likelihood of actually creating a schedule not just an end date for the goal.

I’m not much into formalities, no big spreadsheet, no formal computer program, no stuffy ‘should’s’ for me the word of the year is a symbol of those goals (that I have jotted down in the back of my planner and penciled in on my schedule). It’s written in my planner and hangs on the wall in my office a reminder that I am choosing to create the best version of myself, and that takes effort, conscious thought, and action.

So why do we so often sidestep our own happiness? We set huge goals without intermediate steps or don’t set goals at all, and then we take any perceived mistake and use it to beat ourselves up creating a 1 step forward and 2 steps back sort of momentum.

What if instead, you were to have a benchmark, a guiding light to help you move forward and celebrate your progress rather than magnifying your bumps?

Try this: Light a candle, grab your favorite beverage, a pen, and paper, and gift yourself an hour (alright 30 minutes if you must). Make 3 columns on your paper and label them as follows:

  1. Things I love and want more of
  2. Things I don’t like and want less of
  3. How do I want to feel
  • Now list as much as you can think of under each heading.
  • Look at your lists and jot down words that embody what you want to feel and have.
  • Which word feels best to you, test them out, notice how your body reacts, your mind, your emotions.
  • Write down the word that feels the best.
  • Put the pen down and close your eyes, imagine how you want to embody these things in your work, your relationships, your health, your environment.
  • What do you want to create that will allow for more of what you are seeking?
  • These are your goals.

Here is part of mine that will help shape my word this year.

Things I love and want more of

  • Walks on the beach
  • Curiosity/Discovery
  • Connecting with family and friends
  • Great conversations
  • Coaching/teaching
  • Writing
  • Learning new things

Things I don’t like and want less of

  • Emotional drama
  • Overgiving
  • People pleasing
  • Swollen feet
  • Sitting for long periods of time

How do I want to feel

  • Open
  • Connected
  • Inspired
  • Expansive
  • Useful
  • Passionate

I would love to hear what comes up for you. What is your word? Share in the comments below(, and I’ll share mine when I land on it)

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How to Release the Grip of Scarcity

The opposite of scarcity is not abundance it’s sufficiencyThe opposite of scarcity is not abundance it’s sufficiency. We live in a culture of scarcity, where we feel compelled to strive for more because there is the illusion of not enough.

 

The pursuit of abundance itself is a scarcity tactic, creating a low level(sometimes high level) of anxiety that makes it hard for us to relax and appreciate what is. The marketing world plays on this using advertising that hijacks your amygdala and has you looking for ‘enough’ outside of yourself. Using your resources, time, money and energy, in ways that aren’t in alignment with who you are and what you are a stand for.

 

Sufficiency is enough, not just getting by, not less than, but simply enough. Sufficiency does not preclude fiscal responsibility or wealth building, or vacations, or nice things.

It’s about being enough,

The state of mind,

The state of being,

The state of engaging ….. as enough.

 

It’s not a number or a goal. It’s about appreciating what is. It’s about aligning with your unique set of values and commitments. It’s using your resources, time, money, and energy, on the things that are meaningful to you, that bring you joy and a sense of fulfillment. Sufficiency lets the excess fall away and frees you up to focus on what is really important to you.

 

Ironically this is also what opens the way for abundance, because abundance is all about flow. There needs to be movement, a freedom that can organically go where it needs to. Scarcity has us holding on too tightly. Sufficiency loosens the grip and lets us see more clearly what’s really important. When we lose touch with our inner compass it’s easy to get side tracked thinking that the next thing is the answer.

Take a few minutes and look at where you’re plugged into the ‘not enough’ scarcity mentality. Is it money? Is it time? Is it resources?

For tips to rewrite your relationship with scarcity click here

 

 

 

 

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Money, Vulnerability, & Limits

Vulnerability and MoneyWho knew that at 50 I would be looking at my financial picture through the lens of a single income earner. I certainly didn’t. I can tell you it is a different view. There’s no fall back income, no one to share the decisions with, all at a point where you’re supposed to have it all figured out.

 

Financial decisions have a different weight after fifty. Retirement looms as an actual possibility rather than an idea existing in the wispy land of far far away. The college costs of kids (if you have them) have eaten away at your net worth. The job market is narrower and more limited, alas ageism is alive and well.

 

There is of course an up side. There is no one to argue with over what to spend where. (for me this translates into guiltless shoe purchases)The pressure of being the sole provider steps up my game. I’m taking risks in a more calculated way and consciously choosing where to invest my money. But best of all vacation costs are cut in half.

 

One of the biggest surprises that came up for me was my story about money. It is the background noise that runs pretty consistently. I thought I would simply adjust my lifestyle, cut a few corners, and earn a little more to balance things out and WaLa things would be right as rain. Not so true…..It was kinda crazy the things that came up – my money set point, the beliefs about wealth and wealth accumulation, the ideas about the ‘right’ way to earn money. All those limiting beliefs that were in many ways counterbalanced by my ex came up front and center.

 

I discovered that I’m exceptionally good at generating money for other people. One of the kids needs a new computer, my ex wanting a motorcycle, my grandsons tuition. Easy for me, I just set my intention, tuned in, and took action. It worked every single time.

 

Not so for myself. Even in the writing of this I’m getting a little squirmy, I pause at this point because the story in my head says polite people don’t talk about money. And in this moment there it is another limiting belief to untangle. Another layer to look at.

 

For now this is enough, maybe there’s something for you to mull over until next week , I’ll share one of the tools I use to help me untangle. I would  love to hear  your thoughts in the comments  below.

 

 

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Big Changes, Transformations, and Midlife Crisis (part 2 of 2)

a woman’s greatest vulnerability is autonomy.I listened to a podcast last year (try as I might I can not remember which one it was) the woman being interviewed was researcher who studies women and desire. She talked about women being wired for connection. It’s basically in our DNA to create community. This is proven out time and again with foreign aid donations women have a much higher likelihood  do what is best for the family or community.

What really fascinated me was that her research showed that a woman’s greatest vulnerability is autonomy. This struck me very deeply as a truth.

In my own process of sorting through what my next chapter would be I had the yo–yo effect of stay –    no – go –    no – stay and most of it centered around how my actions would effect everyone else, my ex, my family, friends, clients, and colleagues. It wasn’t until I began to focus on what I truly wanted that clarity and certainty started to bubble up.

 

Peeling back the layers of what others wanted and expected and what I truly wanted took some time, some work and a lot of self-exploration. It was scary, exhilarating, fun, sad, and enlightening.

 

There is a lot to be said on this subject and this article touches the surface only. Change is uncertain whether it’s a change in job, a change in relationship, living situation, or health. The unknown can be scary and intimidating. The innate urge to foster connection and community can make it even more difficult to get to the core of what the right choice for you is.

 

Looking back here are the top 3 things that helped me:

 

rockclimbingLearn to trust yourself – sounds silly but the truth is for most of us we’ve been thinking of other peoples needs for so long we’ve turned the volume down on our own wants and desires. Trusting that the pull I was feeling was to nourish my soul and each step in that direction was a celebration

 

 

 

rp_nurse-frustrated-150x150.jpgFeel what you need to feel– It’s messy and uncomfortable and absolutely necessary. And , specifically for women we need to know – anger is okay; really it is , there are healthy ways to express it. Bottling it up, squashing it down, and pretending it doesn’t exist is a recipe for unhappiness, health issues, and staying stuck.

 

rp_kitty-perscpective-150x150.pngStretch yourself – try new things, test new ideas, step outside your comfort zone …even a little bit to help you grow and expand into the woman your longing to become

 

 

 

Know you are not alone millions of women reach crossroads and choose where they want to go, finding their unique path.

I believe in you.

I believe in your deepest dream.

I believe in your amazing possibility.

Today do 1 thing that celebrates that spark inside of you.

Share in the comments below.

 

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