The Power of Positive

In Gretchen Rubin’s book, The Happiness Project, Gretchen writes about small steps she took each month to improve different aspects of happiness in her life.

Why?

Because research shows that happy people are more altruistic, more productive, more helpful, more likable, more creative, and more resilient. They’re more interested in others. They’re friendlier. And they’re healthier!

If there was a magic elixir to help you accomplish this, wouldn’t you be tempted? And wouldn’t you like to hang out with the happy people described above? So why not be in that group? Continue reading

When you have a deep urge to try something…

Do you ever get the urge to do something but talk yourself out of it because you think you’ll be bad at it?

Or you won’t do something because someone told you that you’d be bad at it.

Or maybe you have a deep urge to do something, but last time you tried it you really were bad at it.

But you want to do it again. It’s come up a number of times… So do it!

If you think you’ll be bad at it…
Well, you never know until you try.

If it’s something that needs extra learning, you have options:

  • Sign up for a class.
  • Find a mentor.
  • Head to the library and find a book on it.
  • Do a search online to find out more about what you want to do
  • Find other people who are doing what you want to do and see if you can meet them to talk.

Continue reading

The secret life of broccoli

One of the last surviving flowers in my garden before we finally got a hard frost this week was broccoli. I put in six plants this year. I harvested on a pretty regular basis from five of them but decided to let the sixth one go without a trim. I was curious about what would happen. Most of us only “know” broccoli from what we see in the grocery store. What would old, more mature broccoli look like? Continue reading

We are terrible at listening to people we disagree with

“We are terrible at listening to people we disagree with.”

That was the topic of a TEDx speaker yesterday in Portland.

Chanel Lewis was visiting a local flea market, taking pictures for her Instagram account when she met two staunch Republicans who wanted to know what she was doing and why. She explained she was looking for unusual images. Somehow, that evolved into politics and she quickly discovered she had nothing in common with these two men. But she chose to continue the conversation with them because she’s practicing “internal quieting, and radical listening.” That’s where you turn off your inner murmur and just listen. Continue reading

The importance of mentoring

When we started rehearsals for a show I’m directing this fall, I saw the line-up of kids in the show and got a flash from the past. “Oh, my gosh. I’m Helen Todd.”

Helen cast me as Napoleon in The Nerve of Napoleon at the Little Theater of Alexandria when I was about 10 years old. You remember big moments like that in your life. And you remember the person responsible for giving you a break. A person who saw something in you that other people hadn’t seen. Who gave you encouragement. Who showed you how to do something. Who pushed you past your limits.

You had a mentor.

And now you can be a mentor. Continue reading

Work out with a group? Or on your own?

I was talking with a friend over the weekend who said she hurt her hip doing yoga. I tend to do the same thing when I work out with a group – I push things past where I should, and always end up with an achy something.

That discussion got me thinking about the pros of working out with a group v. working out on your own.

Pros to working out with a group Continue reading

Finding your Element

I’m reading The Element by Ken Robinson and am finding all sorts of deliciousness. Here’s a point I was pondering today.

  • Recognizing where you feel most yourself is a clue to figuring out what your “element” is.

If you feel most at home in a library, then loving books and loving to read may be your “element,” and your soul may want to be a writer, editor, or publisher. Continue reading