Posts In: mindset

Don’t “Just Do It”

January 18, 2020

I’m guessing you’ve heard of the “Just do it” slogan. Who hasn’t? Sure seems to work well for Nike. After all they’ve been using it since 1988.

But I don’t think it works well as an approach to change. In fact, I think it’s one of the common mistakes we make when facing a transition.

I’m not saying you don’t need to take action to live your purpose. You do. But we’re told as we plan and dream for the future that moving into action is key. I hear people say things like “massive action,” “fast action,” or we need to “jump into action.” More and quicker activity seems to be the focus.

To everything there is a season

But there’s a time for rest, for a pause. To regroup.

Look at nature. I don’t stand on my deck in the rain yelling at the deciduous trees in my woods to get their leaves on.  Those oaks and maples are in resting phase right now.

Sometimes you need a resting phase too.

Sometimes “just doing it” is inappropriate for where you are in your process.  Jumping into action, especially random action, often causes more harm than good.

If you’ve been putting off working on your dreams because you’re afraid or you don’t know where to start you may think I just gave you permission to rest, to do nothing. Not so.

Discernment

Can you see how useful it would be to know when you should move into action and when you should pause? Is that a skill you’ve honed?

Can you also feel how important it is to know how to spend that precious pause? You might think it’s solely for Netflix binging, but it’s not.

Your thoughts?

Don’t be a hostage

January 17, 2020
photo from past

Have you ever found yourself excited about a new venture? You dream about what it will be like when you open your new business. Or you visualize finishing your book or celebrating at your first art show.photo from past

But then you start doubting yourself. After all, you failed before, right? Might not even be the same project, but you start pinning your current likelihood of success to a past failure.

You become a hostage to a past that might not even be accurate. Our memories are slippery. I feel like I have a good memory so was surprised to learn that I might be deluding myself. Have you seen the recent research about memory? Turns out most of us trust our memory more than we should. So it’s especially sad when we get stopped by a story from our past that has warped with time.

When change happens (or you want change to happen) you might feel triggered remembering past experiences, disappointments, and fears. As seductive as the past can be it’s the now that is rich with information that can lead you toward your purpose, toward your dreams.

Coming back to the moment and knowing how to gather those nuggets is a skill to hone.

I’m curious. Do you feel like you’ve let the past (real or imagined) keep you from your dream and goals?

Call Me Bigfoot

January 15, 2020

You don’t get to choose if you’ll have change in your life. Yes, you can be intentional about inviting it in or holding it back.

But at some point, in some way, your life will shift.

More than once.

And when those transitions come you get to decide how to dance with that change. Sometimes it can feel graceful, a thing of beauty. And other times it’s painful, even embarrassing.

Would you swipe right?

So what’s your relationship with change? Would you select something new if your life choices appeared on a dating app? If you’re like me, it probably depends upon what is transforming, what those choices are.

Right now I’m looking forward to different weather when I head to Mexico for my annual retreat in a week and half. It’s in the 30s-40s here with some snow. But in a week I’m headed to 70s-90s and sunshine.

I feel differently about the changes that arrived along with having broken my ankle several days ago. I was helping my mom move from her longtime home in the Midwest to an independent living facility. On my last trip out of the house I missed the edge of a little plastic step into the garage that had been moved and fell.

Making friends with change

I’m not fighting the changes brought by my injury. I’ve done that plenty of times and it’s not very productive. In fact, it’s delayed healing and created more suffering for me.

So instead, I’m embracing the change that my temporary disability brings. I’m feeling my feelings. Of course I’m disappointed I can’t drive a car, walk on the beach in Mexico, or in my woods right for some weeks. But I’m mostly feeling grateful. Here are a few of the things for which I’m feeling appreciative.

  • Minor break and that will heal completely in weeks.
  • Little discomfort
  • Support of strangers who helped me in the airport as I flew home with crutches and an aircast.
  • My spouse, Theresa, and friend, Paula, who picked my car and me up in Portland since I was planning on driving home.
  • My healer friends who’ve sent energy my way.
  • My clients who have all been understanding of me cancelling their upcoming appointments.

I can’t say that moving into appreciation right away has been my go to when it comes to change. One of the advantages of struggling with it is that I’ve gotten good at recognizing some of the common mistakes we make whether hurtling or shuffling toward something new and different. I’ve learned (and continue to learn) how to embrace change rather than struggle with it. Over the next few days I’ll be sending you some articles about change and some of those common mistakes.

I’d love to know your thoughts. Where do you struggle with transition in your life? Do you relate to any of these mistakes?

Holiday Sanity?

December 9, 2018
holiday-wreath


How’s your holiday season ramping up? A few years ago I ran into a yoga teacher I know and we talked about the stress of the holidays. I mentioned that next year I would be doing things differently by choosing fewer things to participate in. Her response? “But by next year you’ll forget.” 

Was she right? I made a pact with myself right then not to forget. I’ve always felt like at the time of year when we naturally want to hibernate, when the days are darker, when our natural rhythm invites us to be more internal, we plan even more gatherings. I decided to be really selective and choose only a couple events each December. 

This year I’m going to Regina, a local sound healer’s event on December 21. Then on Christmas morning my partner and I are volunteering at an event that brings breakfast and some essential items like socks, garbage bags, and flashlights to the local homeless population. That’s it. 

Want to know the other thing that created ease in my holidays? A few years back my sister lived in London and even though I sent my packages weeks ahead she didn’t receive them until after the holidays. In fact, she didn’t receive any of the gifts from my family in time. I felt terrible. The next year I mailed my gifts a month ahead. If I was going to get hers in the mail I might as well send the rest of my families gifts at the same time. 

That was the most restful December I’d had in years. It worked so well that, even though my sis now lives in Washington D.C. area, I’ve continued the tradition. My gifts were in the mail by November 26 this year. I’m not telling you this to pat myself on the back. I find plenty of ways to stress myself out. But I’ve gotten good at keeping the holidays restful and special. 

My challenge to you? Take one minute right now and list the one thing that’s most important to include in your holiday season.  Then take another minute to make a note of some obligation you can let go of. I bet there’s at least one. You really don’t have to attend that staff party you hate or make cookies for the exchange or do the secret Santa thing. Unless you really want to. Be mindful about what would feel good to you. 

By the way, I have two remaining spots in my February Purposeful Yoga Retreat in Mexico. It would make a great holiday gift, don’t you think? You can get the details here. 

Trust is an issue for me.

Actually I have a lot of trust. I trust that my car will get me to my destination. I trust that my friends and family will be there for me. I trust in the goodness and kindness of people. I trust my credit union. I trust in the power of wholeness.

My trust issues are with myself. They don’t haunt me every moment. In some circumstances I completely trust my abilities, my knowledge, and my skills.

But at other times lack of trust in myself will throw me off balance. Or maybe I’m off balance and the negative thinking seizes the opportunity and slinks into my brain and finds it’s favorite chair.

My job is to fill every seat in the auditorium of my brain with happy, supportive thoughts. And if a slacker thought like lack of trust files in, my job is to quickly displace the loser.

One way I do this is with affirmations. The right affirmations calm me. Even if I don’t believe them 100% in the beginning, I know at some level that they’re true. I know that they support my best self, the self that I’m interested in hanging out with, the self I’m interested in sharing with others.

And I know to be 100% committed to my path, to be of service in the way I want to be of service I must trust what I’m here to offer. I know that to be true for you as well.

I’d like to share an mp3 affirmation recording with you. It’s a quick two-minute invitation to more trust—trust in your guidance, trust in your body, trust in your skills…

You can listen to it here. Trust2

Or you can put it on your phone and then, like me, listen when you’re on the go.

Is trust an issue for you as well? I’d love to know if you find my recording useful.

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