At the beginning of April, we moved in to our new fixer-upper of a house, that is still pretty heavy on the fixer side of the equation. The living room windows still don’t have sills, the bathroom doesn’t have a mirror yet, the basement is still a field of boxes, the yard is still debris-strewn. And yet, we all love living here. Primarily because of the yard. Oh, the yard! <Swoon.>
For the first time in their young lives, my kids have ridiculously easy access to the outside, and they are out there as much as they possibly can be. Just last week, my 5-year-old daughter climbed her first tree–the enormous rhododendron that anchors our far corner. My son has been hiding rocks he smuggles in in his pockets all over the house. And the two of them have dug more holes than the gopher in Caddyshack. I love that I can say, “Outside until dinner!” It’s clear that spending time outdoors grounds my kids; they’ve been sleeping great, eating like champs, and we barely noticed any bumps in the road during the transition of moving. But I have also been craving a couple of ideas for ways I can use our newfound outdoor freedom to expand their wee minds. Enter Early Childhood Activities for a Greener Earth. Read more…
I feel I must warn you. I’ve been thinking lots of big thoughts this past week, and I’m feeling called to share them.
Primarily, I’m really present to the fact that life is precious, and finite. See, I’m just back from traveling to Alabama for the funeral of a high school friend. Teddy was a huge piece of my formative years – a hilarious, daring, larger-than-life piece. And he wasn’t just important to me; I was only one of the 2,000 people who came to his service — his wife, daughter, and mom among them. There were so many signatures in the guest book that they spilled over on to the inside covers.
I made the decision to fly home to for the services in an instant, and I’m so thankful I did. (Thanks, Hubs, for graciously single parenting while I was away.) Being able to visibly show my support for his family and spend time with others who loved him felt 100% right. What I didn’t expect was how great it would feel to be around old friends. It was like no time had passed. And yet, of course, it had. Almost 30 years since we graduated. And Teddy’s passing was a clear reminder that none of us know just how much time we have left. Read more…
Here is the recording of my recent teleclass, “The Most Important Two Minutes of Your Life.”
I hope it sparks an insight or an idea for you. If it does, please share it in the comments below! Sharing gives those thoughts power.
Video #3: What Matters Most
I’m all hopped up this morning on life itself. Three nights ago, my husband and I had a car accident that was – thankfully, blessedly – minor in the grand scheme of things and sheer terror in that actual moment. I’m still processing it, honestly, so I don’t want to go into it too much just yet. But the Cliff Notes version of my takeaway is this:
Life is precious.
We all know this deep down, but we need periodic wake-up calls to keep it front and center. I got mine three nights ago. I hope this post and the information it contains will be yours. Because we’ve all got important stuff to do while we’re here! Can I get an amen? Read more…
And over the years, that love of comfort has done me some disservices. For example, when I graduated from high school at the ripe old age of 17 and my wise Dad counseled that I take a year before going to college to travel and work. I didn’t even truly consider it. “Nah,” I said, in favor of a dorm room and a meal plan. Or the college summer my roommate invited me to drive cross country and go work on an Oregon resort. “Think I’ll stay home and lifeguard,” I replied.
Here’s something I’ve come to learn: Getting out of your everyday environment is crucial for your growth. See, the people we spend the most time with may love us and want the best for us, but on some level they’re invested in us staying the same as we ever were. It’s not malicious and something they’re likely not even aware of, but that doesn’t mean it’s not true. A very big percentage of us are scared of change—change in ourselves, change in the world, and change in the people we love.
“Every thought we think is creating our future. ” ― Louise L. Hay
In the photo you see here, there is a large spaceship hovering menacingly in the sky while innocent people run for their lives. That spaceship is the approximate size of the sty I developed a few weeks back. Seriously. It was BIG.
Why am I telling you about my sty, you may be wondering. Well, before I tell you, I want to remind you about my newsletter from last week, where I talked about the cost of keeping your true thoughts locked away inside your head, and how exploring and sharing your truth will always get you exactly where you need to be. Because there is a direct parallel between my monster sty and my own personal truth.
“One of the greatest moments in anybody’s developing experience is when she no longer tries to hide from herself but determines to get acquainted with herself as she really is.” — Norman Vincent Peale
Raise your hand if you’ve bitten your tongue, decided not to think about something unpleasant, or otherwise kept your true thoughts from entering your consciousness or exiting your brain in the last 24 hours.
Oy. Will you please stop doing that? Let’s take a vow together right now: No more half-truths or tight lips. You up for it?
I know it’s hard to open your mouth and say what you really think. I know you were probably raised to be nice. You probably even learned some very powerful lessons when you were a kid about how saying what was on your mind was not cool, or even unsafe. I get it. Really. (I got the same message.)
Stuck. Stymied. Spun out. Stressed. Sick. Silently (or perhaps not so silently) freaking out. We’ve all been there; we’ll all be there again. Because, sadly, personal development isn’t a tidy, linear, upward moving arrow. It’s a curlicue, a doodle. At times it loops back on itself and shoots you somewhere you never expected to be.
This is an incomplete list of what to do in those moments when you need an energy boost, stat. And you can probably already tell I’m not talking about the energy that means physical stamina or strength, or how tired you are or aren’t. I’m talking about how you view, interact with, and show up in the world. It’s your own personal frequency, and when you learn how to access the higher energy levels, that’s when the inevitable detours stop feeling so hard and avoid becoming cul de sacs.
After my second child was born, I gave up a 13-year mind-body practice cold turkey. I just didn’t have time to do one thing that wasn’t directly related to keeping those kids fed, rested, housed, and cared for. At least that was my rationale. And it felt so true.
So I stopped going to yoga class, doing yoga at home, or sitting and meditating. And that’s when my overwhelm got so much worse. That’s when I started requiring two or three glasses of wine a night to take the edge off. Which then interrupted my sleep (which was already pretty out of whack with a newborn in the house). Which then impacted my mood. Which had me snapping at my husband. Worst of all, I totally lost touch with any greater vision for myself. I am not going to lie, it was awful. A real low point.
So when my clients and potential clients and readers tell me, “I just don’t have time for any kind of self care at the moment, and I can’t handle the thought of adding something else to my to-do list,” I get it. I really get it.
My almost 3-year-old boy is Mr. No these days. “Teddy, it’s time to put on shoes.” “Nooooo!” “Teddy, it’s time to brush teeth.” “NOOOOOOO!” “Teddy, it’s time for school.” “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO,” accompanied by high-volume crying. He is resistance personified.
When my daughter, who is now 5, was in this phase, I was sure this meant that she was just a control freak who would fight us every step of the way for the rest of her life. (A little reactionary, I’ll admit, but this is truly what I thought in the midst of those epic tantrums.)
Now I’ve come to see resistance in a different light, that’s pretty much summed up by this quote:
“Your resistance is a sign that your system is reconfiguring itself toward success.”
-Todd Herman, ThePeakAthlete.com