Blog

Poem: Be

July 26, 2017
and when the roar
in your head is finally
quiet
and you are unnerved
by the stillness,
good
 
exhale
 
let the nerves be, quiet
 
then you are able
to be
to just be
 
inhale
 
and
realize
everything is as it should
be
 
we are the being
and not
the doing
 
exhale
 
in ...

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I wrote a poem a day. Sometimes a few. And it was...

April 19, 2017
Transformative. Inspiring. Quiet. Calm. Beautiful.
As I headed into my first artist's retreat the past week, I had no idea I would find inspiration and groundedness and stillness and joy in committing to writing poetry every day.
The way it stilled my mind, made everything else go away, focused my thoughts and feelings, and make me feel more alive via the creative process was a huge awakening and gift. 
All of that ...

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Are you hiding? Some thoughts on how, and why, to stop

March 8, 2017

Hiding starts out feeling like safety... then becomes a trap
Do you hide?
I sure have at times in my life. 
Okay, recently.
And I realized it was an old habit from childhood.
And I realized it kept me from... everything. 
Especially myself.
Ah, paradox, you fox.
Hiding from myself - big problem/not possible!
(Hello: Everywhere you go, there you are...)
(Hello: Denial. Which only human animal ...

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New meaning to the old song:

February 11, 2017

"Love the one you're with..."
There's an old Stephen Stills song that I'm taking to a different level.  
 
Who are you always with? You.
 
Before we can love others, make a difference in the world, make changes with ourselves, do just about anything, we must love ourselves. 
I heard that eyeroll from some of you.  Please bear with me.
There's a whole lotta difficult-maddening-confusing-frustrating-horrible-vio...

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Choosing wisdom over fear

January 22, 2017

Which will you listen to, which will you feed...
There is a beautiful parable out there whose original source is unknown but often attributed to American Indian lore, the Tale of the Two Wolves:
 
A grandfather is talking with his grandson and he says there are two wolves inside of us which are always fighting with each other. 
 
One of them is a "good "wolf which represents things ...

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An inspiration from the Minnesota prairie

December 8, 2016

I haven't shared an interview in a while, so I'm absolutely delighted to share this inspiring one of my dear friend, Sandy Olson-Loy.
 
I had the great fortune to meet and work with Sandy at the University of Minnesota Morris campus, a small, undergraduate liberal arts college in west central MN that is part of the large U of MN system. Sandy is the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs; her full bio is here; ...

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Am I the only one that thinks words are weird?

November 30, 2016
Words are really important. And sometimes unnecessary, useless.
This, from someone who loves to write, who loves to use my words to comfort and inspire and educate and connect.
We have all had that experience when words fail us, like when someone has experienced a death or loss or horror. Where everything sounds shallow or hollow or useless or trite or worse, the words are misunderstood and suddenly we've made a bad ...

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Thanksgiving is perhaps the favorite holiday...

November 21, 2016

I hear time and again that Thanksgiving is the holiday people enjoy the most.  A lot of it has to do with the food, a singularly American meal, whether you eat turkey or Tofurkey or your own special main dish passed down from your relatives.
Thanksgiving doesn't involve the gift-giving of all the December holidays, so that pressure isn't there.
I've heard that the night before Thanksgiving is the busiest night ...

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Holidays or Hellidays?

October 31, 2016

Gif courtesy of www.popsugar.com's
17 Important Life Lessons You Learned From A Christmas Story
Christmas often arrived early for me...
My father, dear Alvin, had this annoying habit of mailing Christmas gifts early.
We often did not spend the holidays together, for a variety of reasons, but even if we did, he would mail them (yes, it's true) ridiculously early.  
Like in August.
(Perhaps this ...

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That time I made a big mistake, and how I dealt with it

October 2, 2016

I made a mistake with someone.
 
A big one.
 
In processing it, I realized I had a very narrow focus going into the situation, which was a huge miscalculation on my part. The whole situation come into focus for me once the mistake was made and the someone reacted so negatively.
 
I felt horrible, HORRIBLE, for impacting someone this way. A guiding principle for me has always been "do no ...

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I love fall. I love falling, too.

September 23, 2016

Have you heard of trust falls? I first did in my graduate program in counseling. The professor asked someone to come up to help him demonstrate, and no one wanted to. My friend Penny was the brave one to volunteer. 
The professor asked her to stand in front of him a few feet, put her arms out to the side parallel to the ground, close her eyes, and then fall backward. He promised he would catch her and ...

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How to honor a change in plans?

September 16, 2016
 
A few months ago in my newsletter, I mentioned that some big changes were ahead...
and that I didn’t want to share about it quite yet and would in time.   
 
I have been through many significant changes in the past few years, gratefully.  Though all of it was not easy by any means, some of it was joyful, some life-changing, and all of it was important ...

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Taking orders from the body not the mind: My body walked me today

August 26, 2016
Before I knew it, I was outside, walking in the beauty of morning.
I often start my Fridays with my nose to the keyboard, working away (after morning quiet time, lemon water, coffee [yup, switched from tea], stretching, and required cat-petting-while-she-purrs-in-my-lap). 
But this morning, something propelled me to change into workout gear and my Chacos, and go outside to walk in the beautiful morning cool ...

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John Armich - An entrepreneur for the new economy

August 1, 2016

John Armich is a commercial photographer, a host of a beautiful farmhouse and acreage, and also a real estate agent.  
 
I’ve known John since the early 2000s, when I was living and working in Eastern Pennsylvania at a large camera store and photo lab.  He was one of the first pro photographers I worked with closely to help with his photo processing and the promotion of his work through ...

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Do you ask for what you need?

July 29, 2016

I never used to ask for help.  
I have been independent from a young age. Being self-sufficient, capable, getting things done well and on time while taking care of a whole house (cooking, cleaning, laundry) after my mother died resulted in my father's approval. 
Having your only parent's approval meant safety and security; I also thought that meant I was loved and valued.
If I did all that ...

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Summer Soul Searching

July 14, 2016
What's your soul telling you lately?  Take time to ask, and time to listen...
How often do you stop and contemplate how you're really feeling, what your life is about, what you are really desiring in your inner and outer life, what your heart and soul are trying to tell you but doesn't often get through with all the busyness of life and challenges of every magnitude all around?
I encourage you to get pen and paper ...

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“How YOU doin’?”

July 7, 2016
Have you ever noticed someone checking you out?  
 
I just walked by a 20-something woman and smiled at her as I do most people I pass in my hallway.  She didn’t really smile back at me, however, it was a sort of half-acknowledgement, and as soon as she made eye contact, her eyes immediately averted and traveled down my body to my feet as she passed.  
 
Hmm. ...

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Let's honor the dads

June 22, 2016
(This was originally published in a special Sunday edition of my newsletter, in honor of Father's Day 6/19/16.)
If you've followed my newsletter, you know that I've told stories of some not so pleasant memories with my own father, and hopefully you also heard me say how much I value all the lessons I received from him as a result.  He has been critically important to my life, and for that I will always ...

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Change our words, change our brains, change our inner and outer world

June 9, 2016
I found this easy to read article about brain chemistry and the power of words:
Speak with kindness: How (our) words literally restructure (our) brains. (The image is from this article, from thespiritscience.net.)
A few salient quotes from the article:
 “A single word has the power to influence... physical and emotional stress.
(Side note: This is why mediation using one ...

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Help for releasing toxic thoughts from toxic relationships in your life and regain your energy and self-regard

June 6, 2016
 Do you have someone in your life who likes to point out your flaws, mistakes, someone who disapproves of your actions, choices, beliefs, clothing, food, whatever it may be, and you find yourself believing those opinions and beating yourself up with them?  Does that someone attempt to manipulate you by being conditional and threatening to withhold their love or friendship or not even be in a relationship with ...

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There's nothing wrong with you

June 1, 2016
There's nothing wrong with you!  (And me?  Working on believing it**...)
 

 
Is that possible, there's nothing wrong with us?
Please read this beautiful excerpt from a yoga teacher's blog below.  (We've never met; I saw this on a coaching group I belong to on Facebook.)  
 
"There is nothing wrong with you. You are human. You are capable of great joy and great ...

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My recent commonplace book entries - daily inspirations

May 18, 2016

Have you ever heard of a commonplace book ?  A commonplace book is a central resource or depository for ideas, quotes, anecdotes, observations and information you come across during your life and educational pursuits. The purpose of the book is to record, and if so inclined, organize these gems for later use in various parts your life.  I use some things in greeting cards, my writing, emails to friends, ...

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How to ground yourself in times of stress (or all the time. All the time is good.)

May 12, 2016
The term “grounding” may be foreign to some and very dear and familiar to others.  In brief, in this context it is a means for reducing stress in the body and mind, for returning to a calm state, to better handle whatever is happening with us in our lives..
 
Let’s take a journey to the dictionary first, a great place of curiosity and learning and opening.
 
Ground: ...

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Big life changes: A swirl of thoughts

May 10, 2016
I have a lovely community online in which we support each other in learning and practicing self-care for our bodies, minds, and spirits.  One day I decided to ask them what would they like help with right now.  
 
One dear soul stepped up, was willing to be vulnerable (a huge part of self-care, actually), and asked about, to paraphrase, ‘the challenges of dealing with recurrent big ...

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Zula, Sadie, and Evelyn. Love. Love. Love. #mothersday

May 8, 2016

Evelyn, Zula, and Sadie...
Are those not beautiful names?  And look at those faces.  Are those not beautiful faces?
My mother, Evelyn, is on the right, my dearest Aunt Zula is on the left, and grandmother Sadie (short for Anastasia - is THAT not a beautiful name?), is, of course, in the middle.
I think this photo pre-dates my arrival on the planet, or, my mom might be pregnant with me.  (Sisters, ...

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Thoughts on The Biggest Loser NY Times Article

May 3, 2016
This article published in the NY Times yesterday broke my heart a bit.  
 
I never liked the Biggest Loser franchise.  Screaming at people, false environments, extreme actions to drastically lose a lot of weight in a very short time to “win”...  
 
I always wondered what happened after the contestants left the show.  But I didn’t need to:  It ...

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Words of inspiration from Julia Cameron, author of “The Artist’s Way”

May 2, 2016
I have multiple friends in my life who have been positively affected in big and small ways by the writing and exercises of Julia Cameron.  I have benefitted, too, dutifully writing Morning Pages, and I cherished seeing her in Boulder, CO on her book tour.  
 
We are creative beings, and she taps into that part of us that is often neglected because we’re Too Busy with all the Important ...

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Nancie Hines, Reflexologist, will melt your stress away

May 2, 2016
Nancie Hines of Portland Reflexology is a nationally certified Reflexologist (one of only a handful in Oregon, a licensed massage therapist, and has a masters degree in marriage and family therapy).  Full disclosure:  I've had many Reflexology sessions with Nancie, and urge you to experience this profoundly healing and relaxing form of bodywork.  I've felt my energy shift, my stress lifted, ...

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Running from yourself, or to yourself?

April 30, 2016

I found myself running recently
Not something I do or have done very often (not my cardio of choice, nor possible when I was really overweight/for most of my life).
Yet, my body enjoyed it.  My lungs reminded me they need some attention, the kind running requires.  Noted.  
>>> The rose.  Has no connection to running.  As yet.  It's just there for beauty's sake.  We all ...

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A standing desk, getting smaller, embracing vulnerability: 7* of the best things I ever did

April 7, 2016
Loved people as they are and got out of their business (did that ever take pressure off I didn’t even realize was there, and gave freedom and respect to everyone).
 
Shared life with dogs and cats (whatever it is about their sweet souls that gets into our hearts and stays there just can’t be spoken of highly enough).
 
Lived in 6 different states and 4 different time ...

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Revisiting courage and vulnerability: Shining a light on hiding and how to come out of the shadows

April 5, 2016
Last fall, I wrote about courage and vulnerability.
 
I reread it today for the first time in a long time; I admit that right now I need to remind myself of my own messages.  Like little children who want to hear fairy tales over and over to understand more and more from each telling, I need to go deeper with this information in the current circumstances I am facing.  
 
Life ...

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12 Things To Focus The Day

April 1, 2016
When the list is too big, the feelings too much...
Here are 12 questions to help you improve and focus your day, or maybe simply the next two minutes.
If you’re lost, stuck, overwhelmed, uncertain, overstimulated, bored, apathetic, worried, scattered, scared and not sure what to do next from the list of things on your to-do list or bouncing around in your head, ponder these questions.
The questions ...

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Thoughts on the challenges of love

March 22, 2016
The difficulties we encounter in loving others are just as important as the bliss we experience - they both make love stronger in different ways.  Here are quotes reflecting on the challenges that present an opportunity for love to deepen.
 
“Once the realization is accepted that even between the closest human beings infinite distances continue, a wonderful living side by side can grow, ...

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How letting go of stuff improved my life:  3 ways to begin decluttering

March 21, 2016
I kept a 10 foot by 20 foot storage unit in rural Minnesota for 13 years.  I didn’t live in Minnesota any of those years; I was busy exploring other parts of the country and didn’t want to bring everything with me until I felt like I was going to settle somewhere.  (Ha.  I’ve lived in four states and three different time zones since loading it up and leaving the lovely Land of 10,000 ...

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How to change your language to lower your stress

March 14, 2016
“I’m so stressed out!”
 
“I can’t handle all this stress.”
 
“If only I didn’t have all this stress, life would be better.”
 
“My _____ (kids, husband/wife, boss, employees, debt, weight, commute, insert what fits for you) stress/stresses me out so bad, I don’t know what to do!”
 
...

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Help from some famous people for dealing with stress

March 13, 2016
The truth is that there is no actual stress or anxiety in the world; it's your thoughts that create these false beliefs. You can't package stress, touch it, or see it. There are only people engaged in stressful thinking.
-- Wayne Dyer, philosopher, author
 
What happens when we're willing to feel bad is that, sure enough, we often feel bad - but without the stress of futile avoidance. ...

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5 Less-common tips for reducing stress: Sleep naked, for one

March 8, 2016
There are a lot of lists all over the web for how to reduce stress, and most include the ones you’re likely familiar with:
 
Eat healthier, get more sleep, get regular exercise, meditate, don’t overbook your schedule… we tend to tune out these recommendations nearly as soon as we read the first one.
 
I thought I’d search around for more ideas for lowering ...

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Jennifer Anllo - Caring for our skin and our hearts

March 7, 2016
I had the good fortune to become friends with Jen when we worked together several years ago.  I watched as she followed her passion and pursued her dream.  She's an expert in her field, and she is a leader - she took the leap and started her own esthetics center, and it's already thriving after a short time.  She loves helping women feel good about themselves, and her magic is with skincare.  She ...

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How to get inspired

March 1, 2016
 
Get curious and ask questions, lots and lots of questions.  Let one lead to another.  Be like those darling (or not) 4-year-olds who continually ask “why?”  Seek to understand things to new depths, seek things you’ve no clue about to expand your world, and seek deep within, opening and listening to yourself in new ways.
Go outside and appreciate everything you see ...

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Play more to stress less, and get more done

February 29, 2016
I hear the phrase “Work Hard Play Hard” frequently, and I’ve usually had a knee-jerk reaction to it.  A negative one.  It’s with the word “hard”, a word I try to avoid as much as possible.  I like the word “ease.”  Even just saying "ease" makes me slow down a little, and helps life not to feel so, well, hard.  
 
I’m ...

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What leap do you want to make?

February 29, 2016
Leap Day, Leap Year 2016.  
 
It sure has been a leap year for me, and will continue to be so.  I'm taking leaps professionally and personally toward my goals and dreams in many different ways:  I’m writing more, a lifelong dream; I’m deepening relationships, which makes me feel so good and connected to the world and my true self; my coaching practice is growing, and ...

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An Act of Courage: Accepting - and Loving - What Is

February 24, 2016
If you’re not familiar with Byron Katie, read below to get a sense of the gift she has brought to the world in the form of tirelessly encouraging us to stay present, accept, and love what is. 
 
“Don't believe everything you think.”
 
“When you argue with reality, you lose, but only 100% of the time.”
 
“There’s only one ...

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Bingeing to swallow grief: The frozen chocolate cake

February 24, 2016
Most binge eating patterns develop to stuff feelings and thoughts.  This was certainly true for me:  Grief, fear, anxiety, shame, sadness, anger, confusion, lost-ness, isolation, all got stuffed away as the effects of the food took over my body, mind, and heart.  At least temporarily.
 
When I think about when bingeing started for me, I remember the freezer in our house after my mother ...

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How to improve your relationships: Say what you mean

February 23, 2016
A lot of communication issues would be solved by people speaking directly, meaning truthfully and without manipulation. That may sound obvious, or it may be confusing, depending on where you fall on the continuum of speaking directly or indirectly.
 
To get more granular, if you start a conversation, are you being clear about what you want to talk about? If you have a question for someone, do you come ...

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How to create a gratitude practice

February 18, 2016
Gratitude is being researched by scientists, and it has been proven to have significant benefits for us.  The list of benefits below is from the Greater Good Science Center at the University of California, Berkeley which intends to “expand the science and practice of gratitude.”
 
- Stronger immune systems and lower blood pressure
- Higher levels of positive emotions
- More joy, optimism, and ...

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The Power of Snuggling

February 16, 2016
Recently my cat, Moon Star (read some of her wisdom here), has become more of a snuggler.  She’s over 13, and I adopted her when she was about ten and a half. Her breed is the Dilute Tortoise, which tend to run on the anxious side, the don’t-get-too-close-too-long variety, so this is news, significant, if only to me.  
 
She’s never been one to really like being held, she ...

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Woman with Moxie Dill Ward - Connecting women entrepreneurs, and helping people find their home

February 15, 2016
Dill Ward is a realtor and an energetic connector of women entrepreneurs.  I met the force of love that she is last year at a Women with Moxie Mixer, and have been impressed with her unflagging support of women growing their businesses and themselves into their most vibrant true selves ever.
 
You've developed an amazing network for women entrepreneurs to connect and support each other in a very ...

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Earl Dizon, Writer and An Inspiration

February 10, 2016
Earl Dizon is a lover of all things related to books, a writer, blogger, illustrator, a champion of volunteerism, an inspiration, hilarious, and wants to make the world more kind.  I was fortunate to meet Earl on the very first job I got in Portland, at a bookseller, and we have been friends ever since.  In my goal to bring to you interesting and inspiring people from all over, I think you will find our conversation ...

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Musings on Mystery

February 10, 2016
I am finding life a bit mysterious right now, in a very good way, so I went in search of wisdom, thoughts, ponderings about it to see what I could learn.  I don't have a neat little package of understanding and wisdom about it to share... just confirmation that sometimes life is beautiful and wonderful because of things we can't explain, and that is more than okay.  Melt into that, and live the mystery to see ...

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10 Decluttering Tips

February 8, 2016
 
I confess:  I love love love to declutter and downsize and rearrange and find a better way to organize it all!  (Okay, I'll calm down.)
 
I get deep satisfaction from creating more clear space, having better functioning space, and especially from having less to manage and clean.  The more I have pared back, the more I have learned what’s most important to me, which has been truly valuable ...

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Switching from caretaking others to taking care of ourselves

February 4, 2016
On January 1st, I created a private group on Facebook for anyone wanting information and support on self-care of their minds, bodies, and spirits.  In it, I post tips, questions and musings on a variety of aspects of taking care of ourselves, because to really be effective at self-care we must make it a daily habit or practice, and that’s really hard for a lot of us.  I’m so honored to have ...

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To stuff or not to stuff… feelings, that is

December 29, 2015

To stuff or not to stuff… feelings, that is
 
I’ve had some feelings come up lately that have brought old habits back knocking on my door to see if I want to let them back into my world.  I don’t and won’t.  Not for a second.  
 
I was a world-class stuffer of feelings and negative thoughts with all things sugary and carb-y and chocolate-y and cheesey and ...

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The beauty of emotions

December 23, 2015

The holiday season brings up a lot of feelings for a lot of people in a lot of ways:  Happiness in giving and receiving gifts.  Sadness for those no longer with us whom we miss.  Ambivalence about time with family because we’re “supposed” to be together per our culture’s pressures, despite problems and strained relations.  Delight in the decorations and lights that show up ...

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Two tips for the next two weeks: Water and pauses

December 18, 2015
For those who celebrate a lot during the last two weeks of the year, we can really tax our bodies with processing a lot of food and drink, and often richer food and drink, than we are used to.  We can also run ourselves ragged, overscheduling, too tightly scheduling things, feeling the pressure to do it all and perfectly, as well dealing with a lot of emotions that always seem to charge the holidays in one way or ...

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Bradley Will. Yes, he will.

December 16, 2015
Bradley Will.  I'm not sure how your Learn to Blog course found its way into my online world, but I'm so grateful it did.  
Thanks to your low key yet energetic leadership and encouragement, I've blogged every day for 30 days. I had only dreamt of blogging regularly prior to this, and now I feel a lovely, solid habit of writing every day inspiring my life and my work.  
Bradley Will.  I've wanted ...

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Courage in the face of vulnerability

December 15, 2015

I just did something pretty vulnerable the other day, and the outcome turned out better than I could have expected (not meaning to be vague or provocative, I do believe in keeping personal things personal at times because, well, it’s mine and I get to pick whether to share or not, unlike the oversharing segment of our culture that seems to think everything must be shared or demand that everything be shared).  I ...

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The bliss of Rumi’s and Hafiz’s poetry

December 14, 2015
I have loved Rumi so long I don’t remember how I got introduced to his poetry.  Hafiz (sometimes spelled Hafez) came a bit later, and similarly swept me off my feet.  Why am I sharing this?  Just because.  
 
Let yourself get taken along by it, let it wash over you and within you, speak it lovingly out loud, and see how you feel afterward.  See how it moves you, about God ...

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Tips for managing personal transitions successfully

December 13, 2015

We all experience change in our lives. The old and true paradox that nothing is constant except change affects us all, so learning to flow with the transitions rather than resist them or make them worse makes all the difference.
 
Are you ending a relationship? Did you just find out you will be a parent? Is a good friend or close family member moving far away, or are you? Are you switching jobs, or careers? Are ...

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Relationship Tip: Improve Your Relationships by Being Attentive

December 12, 2015
In this era of most heads bent down while looking at a screen of some sort, primarily mobile phones and tablets, it's becoming commonplace to see a couple or a group of people out socializing together but focused on their phones or laptops rather than each other. Are you guilty of this, and/or do you have a method for disconnecting from technology and actually talking to people?
 
This relationship tip ...

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How doing less feels like doing more

December 11, 2015
We’re now two weeks from Christmas and three weeks from New Year’s Day.  The slow run that began in early November is now a full sprint into parties and gatherings, wrapping up the end of the year, planning for the new one.  
 
I hear many colleagues and friends list all the things they have going on in the next two and three weeks, and I hear their exhaustion already.  What ...

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Ty Boice, Theatrical Force & Inspiration

December 10, 2015
I’m beginning a series of interviews with people from various fields to discuss inspiration, creativity, resilience, motivation, and more.  
 
I decided to start with Ty Boice, an actor, artistic director, and producer.  He’s been in the theatre scene in Portland for several years, and is moving on to new opportunities in Seattle and Washington.  I first met Ty when the theatre ...

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Staying present

December 9, 2015
We live in a highly distracted culture (at least here in the U.S.). The number of things vying for our attention in any given minute is in the hundreds (truly, if you look around right now there are hundreds of items in your view asking you to notice them, and some are really powerful and beckon, demand you to act on what you see every second).  It’s a culture that places great value on thinking ahead and ...

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Thoughts on Trust

December 8, 2015
Every day I pick three words to help guide me.  Today, “trust” came forward.  I couldn’t remember when that had come up before, so I went searching for some inspiration and hopefully context as to why it came to me.
 
"Forget all the reasons why it won’t work. And believe the one reason why it will."
-- Unknown
 
"Have enough courage to trust love ...

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Meltdowns and self-care

December 7, 2015
I got brave the other night and headed to the mall.  I am not a mall person.  I was hopeful, though, and started out confident and happy to hear the Christmas music.  
 
That began to ebb, however, after the countless trips to the dressing room, the frustrations of sizing being so different between brands meaning doubling and tripling up on things to save trips, and a whining crying ...

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Three steps to an effective to-do list

December 6, 2015
I don’t know many people who don’t keep to-do lists of some kind, though I know they exist; some are amazing and get everything done, others, well, a lot of nothing often gets done, which I think is okay with them (and more power to ‘em if that works for them).  I have been guilty of having ridiculously long lists of things to do and then ridiculously getting overwhelmed, and then a lot of nothing ...

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Overcoming obstacles, deciding on joy

December 5, 2015
I have adored the late Gene Kelly forever.  His exuberance, wide smile, seemingly more emotionally close than Fred Astaire (whom I also adore), and his brilliant, brilliant dancing, choreography, direction, vision, everything.  
 
When I need a lift, I watch the video of him performing "Singing in the Rain."  My understanding of this performance is that he was sick as hell, it was summer and sweltering, ...

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How to make a quick shift in thinking

December 4, 2015
You’ve got a problem that has you stuck, you’re mulling over a decision, you’re generally just feeling a bit uncertain about something.  Here is one of the fastest ways I’ve found to shift something in my thinking to move me forward rather than spinning wheels endlessly:
Pick your messiest drawer.  It could be a kitchen drawer, a makeup drawer, a desk drawer, your underwear and sock ...

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Eckhart Tolle: Wisdom for living in the present moment

December 3, 2015
If you’d like inspiration for how to live in the present rather than the past or the future, it doesn’t get better than spending time with Eckhart Tolle and his books and videos.  If you’re not familiar with him, or if you are and would like a refresher, here are some wonderful quotes from him to help you look at things differently when it comes to past, future, and present.
 
“Some ...

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Set your holiday season intentions

December 2, 2015
Day 2 of December.  Most of us have a lot on our lists and schedules for the next few weeks.  Most of us are already complaining and stressed about how much we have to do, and all the decorating and cooking and baking, and all the relatives coming or the travel ahead, and the dread of shopping for all presents, and…. stop.
 
If this is you, let’s approach this differently.
 
Pleas...

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What to do when overwhelmed

December 1, 2015
Do nothing for a moment.
 
Pause.
 
Close your eyes.
 
Tell yourself, “I am okay in this moment” repeatedly, to stop the obsessive thoughts, and let those words really soothe you.
 
Do not make any decisions right then.
 
Take a walk, preferably outside, if even for a few minutes.
 
“Wait”, ...

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How to manage - and enjoy - the dark weeks of winter

November 30, 2015
We’re heading into the darkest time of winter, the weeks before the Winter Solstice on December 22.  It’s a time of contrasts as so many around the world are actively preparing and excited for the Christmas and New Year holidays, and at the same time so many experience the negative effects of less light during the day.  
 
There are many in depth articles in the world about seasonal ...

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Embracing Change

November 29, 2015
 Note: I wrote this article for the Portland Chapter of Women with Moxie and it was posted on their site Nov 25, 2015.  This version has been modified slightly for this audience.
 
In the last two years, I’ve moved, changed jobs, completed a life coaching program and started my own coaching practice (while employed full time), seen the end a 15 year relationship, and ...

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The power of touch improves relationships and health

November 28, 2015
Regular, healthy touch does wonders for us. We all like a pat on the back, a hug, a handshake, a touch on the hand, to receive acknowledgement for what is happening with us in that moment, or simply the connection we have with another person.
 
Touch has been proven to be therapeutic, critical to the development of newborns and young kids; important to true intimacy in relationships; for reducing symptoms of ...

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Holiday Joy or Overwhelm:  A Lesson from a 5 Year Old

November 27, 2015
Several years ago, a colleague returned from the Christmas holiday with this story about his daughter.  He, his wife, and small daughter daughter had moved from the East Coast to the Midwest just three weeks before Christmas.  This was a big life event for a five year old, and so their extended family decided to send her lots of gifts, and he and his wife went over the top to make their house festive for Christmas ...

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Gratefulness, gratitude, plenitude, grace…

November 26, 2015
Today I walked the beach on the Oregon Coast for hours, giving thanks, feeling full, feeling abundant, humble, expansive, awe, and so many other things.
 
I had a day with no set time for anything, no time pressure or to-dos, a day simply to be present and give myself the gift of beauty all around me.  I realized how truly luxurious this is, how precious, how needed, how it replenishes me.  
 ...

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Gratitude - Earth, Wind & Fire

November 25, 2015

Ahead of TBT, enjoy this beautiful, funky song by Earth, Wind & Fire from the mid-70s:  Gratitude.

 

Go ahead, dance if you like.  

 

Happy Thanksgiving Eve everyone!

 

 

 

 

 



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Letting go

November 24, 2015
I’m letting go of a couple big things in my life in order to make room for what’s next.  Letting go of material things is often connected to our inner lives, if we’ll only stop and make the connections.  
 
Look around.  What owns you (another way of looking at the things you have) that takes a lot of your energy, space, money, time but you find yourself complaining ...

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More Gratitude

November 23, 2015
This Thanksgiving week, I am feeling the gratitude fully.  On a previous post,  I suggested you start a gratitude list.  Today, I’m giving you the gift of some quotes and poems on gratitude from some of my favorite sources.  Sit and enjoy, savor them slowly, and let the words really reach you inside.
 
From the most marvelous poet ever, Rumi:
 
“Gratitude ...

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100 pounds ago

November 22, 2015
I couldn’t cross my legs.
 
I was that large person no one sat by on the bus until it was the very last seat available.
 
More than one flight of stairs and I began to breathe heavily.
 
Clothes shopping was an exercise in frustration and humiliation.
 
People looked right through or past me as if I wasn’t there.
 
I ...

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Gratitude

November 21, 2015
 
With Thanksgiving a few days away here in the U.S.A, my focus is shifting to all for which I’m grateful.  The list is long, and it takes my breath away to contemplate it.  
 
It’s so easy to forget all we have living in a culture that constantly pressures us to want more, consume more, to be unsatisfied with what we have, to compare what we have with what others have, to ...

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A few reminders from my cat

November 20, 2015
This is Moon Star.  She’s quite lovely, queen of the house, very vocal, and has this to share with everyone:
 
Stretch your whole body several times during the day.  
 
Sit and do nothing.  It’s very powerful stuff.  People think you’re thinking important things.
 
Be curious, about everything, all the time.  Inspect everything, ...

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Take a stillness break

November 19, 2015

 
I invite you to take a five minute stillness break with me right now.  
 
Set a timer.  
 
If you have a lovely view of nature or an image of nature or piece of art to gaze at, that would be ideal.  If you don’t, close your eyes, picture your favorite place to be in nature, and put yourself there will all your senses.  
 
Take ...

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Get Inspired to Make Changes

November 18, 2015
I have found some wonderful quotes on change over the years and share them with you today.  Change is what life is.  Allowing it to inspire us versus resisting it makes all the difference in our lives.  
 
One I quote frequently that I love:  "Life is paradox, humor, and change."  
 
Enjoy, and you are welcome to share your favorite quotes on change in the comments.
 
 
“Yeste...

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How to recharge in 3 minutes or less when stressed

November 17, 2015
Our work and personal lives often overwhelm us:  We have packed calendars, to-do lists, suffer from the fear of missing out, our screen time continues to rise and rise, we have goals, objectives, plans, we mustn’t let anyone down, we must cram one more thing in during lunch… and we wonder why we’re anxious, irritable, have short attention spans, and exhausted and unhappy with our lives.  
 
[e...

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Small

November 13, 2015
As I have released the weight and body issues that have been such a present and uncomfortable companion most of my life, it has been fascinating to observe my continual readjustment, recalibration to myself and my world.  
 
There have been so many milestones along this road those who have never been overweight may not understand.  Being able to cross my legs at the knees again.  Leaving ...

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How to approach change from the inside out

November 8, 2015
I've said many times that one of my favorite phrases and guiding principles is Awareness Precedes Choice, and Choice Precedes Change.  I need to alter it, though, as through my training as a life coach, I've learned that there's another step in there, a really important step, that makes all the difference in how we stay motivated to do the daily work of making change in our lives.  
 
And that is to feel.
 
You ...

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Courage in the face of doubt

October 25, 2015
When we're facing difficult things in our lives, we often stay in our rational minds, trying to figure things out logically, wanting answers to impossible or challenging questions and a clear course of action to emerge to help us out of our discomfort as quickly as possible.  
Meanwhile our hearts are trying to reach us above the din, to suggest there's other ways that might work much better. ...

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Musings on integrity, with Martha Beck

October 11, 2015
 
I recently participated in a course on integrity with Dr. Martha Beck, my mentor.  To say that it was inspiring doesn't do it justice.  To say it was challenging doesn't reflect how intense and profound and thought-provoking it was.  To say it was wonderful in ways I didn't know possible is completely accurate.  
I'd like to share with you some of the quotes from Martha during the class that ...

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Recent Entries

Decide

August 24, 2016

The power is in the decision.
We make decisions all day long.
Some are made unconsciously by habit.
Some are made in haste out of raw emotion, and later regretted.
Some are well thought out, after hours or days or weeks or months of planning.
Want to make a change? You have to decide to do it, and to do the work day after day; each day after you have made a decision, you have to decide again to act on it.
Not deciding ...

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Feel it's all too hard some days? Me, too.

July 22, 2016
I'm the first to admit I have been hopeless at times...
Too many to count, really.  You, too?  Let's take a breath, and honor ourselves for being honest.
 
It's important to honor our feelings and fears and doubts and confusion and lostness and anything else when we're not feeling all is right in our worlds, inner and outer. It's a normal part of being human, just as much as feelings of joy and optimism ...

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Trust and courage in times of great change

July 1, 2016

My word for the year has been trust.  We're halfway through 2016, and I've learned a lot about it, and marveled at how life unfolds by continuing to trust, trust and trust some more.
Many, many good things and new understanding have come from surrendering and trusting in the face of great change, uncertainty, failures, and fear, and with successes, insights, joy… everything.   
I’ve ...

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