“If ever there is a tomorrow when we’re not together…
There is something you must always remember.
You are braver than you believe,
Stronger than you seem,
And smarter than you think.
But the most important thing is, even if we’re apart,
I’ll always be with you.”
~A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh~
Have you ever been on an off-road adventure?
You might have gone to a place that specializes in these unpaved experiences. There may have been a guide, a padded vehicle, a helmet, etc. If you’re an adventure seeker, you might have heard laughs and screams of delight as the driver intentionally steered off the road where things got bumpy on r...
A few years ago, I started setting a theme for each year. I'm not exactly sure how I backed into this practice, but it has become a signficant - and fun - exercise to integrate into my personal visioning and planning.
As you prepare for a new year and, inevitably, think about what the year holds for you, I'd like to suggest that you adopt a theme that reflects what you want your year to represent.
Let me explain....
A theme is a recurring idea you'd like to invite. It might be thought of as a central idea, subject or issue. As you imagine a theme for yourself, allow it to become a reference or decision point for the year....
To pass through a mountain, we have to go through a tunnel.
Recently, I was driving to and from Nashville, Tennessee and I had the joy of driving through the Cherokee National Forest.
It was gorgeous and there were tunnels - lots of them!
As I approached each tunnel, I got nervous for some reason.
I had to come to terms with the fact that I don't like tunnels. I know they present an efficient route through a mountain but, for me, they are dark and scary - unlike the picture I've included above (it's how I like to envision tunnels now).
I realized that when we're in a tunnel, we don't exactly know how...
Many years ago, I was sitting in front of the television watching Anne of Green Gables - a favorite from my childhood.
As I recall it now, I remember Anne getting ready to start a new adventure that would bring her away from everything and everyone she knew. Her loved ones, naturally wanted her to stay. Liking the consistency and predictability of the daily life they had lived together her sister offered, "Things don't have to change."
Anne, excited for the new adventures ahead, gently looked at her sister and without he...
I often hear leaders say, "That will never work." This type of certainty is based on data collected in the past. The sentiment can make us feel stuck. Sometimes energy is devoted to what cannot be - instead of what can be. Conclusions based on old data may not be true. What if we imagined a new possibility for our lives? What if we imagined that something just might be possible - if we tried. It is true that we may try and that it will not work, but it is also possible that with the right kind of proactive effort and positive thought, we can promote new beginnings. If you are encountering resistance at your workplace, in...
This week I cut a 4-inch, 40-pound foam mattress into small pieces with an electric knife. I know it sounds crazy but it was strangely satisfying.
I had been dragging this mattress around my house for at least 6 months – I dragged it off of the bed onto the floor where it rested for several weeks. Then I dragged it upstairs – then I dragged it downstairs again. Last week, I finally disposed of it in a crazed, spontaneous and determined moment. I even videotaped the whole thing – knowing that this brilliant impulse moment would be my viral launch to fame.
Although one of my mottos is "I don't backtrack," there have been times in my life when I have been "stuck in replay" and have found myself rewinding the past - landing in old way of thinking, feeling, acting or speaking. The past is important - find your productive path forward by asking the key question: "What is the lesson I am to be learning from this situation?" When we master a lesson, we get to move on to the next - life is our greatest teacher - and off-road moments (the ones that deliver unexpected twists and turns) are our curriculum. Our job is to show up - get the lesson - initiate change - and grow to the ne...
Yesterday as my husband and I were driving back from a day-trip to the beach, there was a terrible rainstorm accompanying us on the interstate.
It was the kind of storm that made me drive slower, open my eyes wider, sit forward, grip tighter and put my hazards on. It was raining so hard that I couldn’t see the cars in front of me. I told myself, “Just put your hands on the wheel and drive.”
Sitting in the passenger seat was my navigator who helpfully informed me that it was raining very hard. (By the way, he too was sitting forward in his seat. Nobody rests well in that kind of storm.)
We are fueled by the stories we tell. You are worthy of your dreams and visions and they can unfold with ease before you. In my own life - and in my work with clients - I have observed that way we offer resistance in our communication (e.g., the dream of being in a new job is interrupted by the talk time we devote to obstacles and reasons that it is not unfolding). It is all too easy to get caught in this treadmill of talk - the treadmill locks us into place. Examine your language. Does the story you speak align with your dreams and visions? Where can you make subtle adjustments to the words that you choose to say?...
Are there any weeds in your life (i.e., things that drain your positive energy)?
Yesterday I weeded my front garden for the first time in months. Typically this is something I enjoy doing but for some reason I have neglected this maintenance task and it showed. On this cool and sunny day, I took my time and decided to play with weeds.
As I searched for the hidden culprits who were secretly and quietly squeezing the life out of my garden, I thought about how weeds easily creep into our lives, in our communities and in our organizations. In my line of work as a communications and organizational development specialist, I find...