Finding your tribe

Yesterday, I drove 4-1/2 hours to Presque Isle, Maine for a one-hour class. Then I drove home again.

Why? Because John Cariani, a Broadway actor and author of the #1 most rented show in 2016, Almost Maine, was teaching a Master Class in writing. I knew I wouldn’t learn a lot in an hour of teaching, but I wanted to make the connection because John is part of the tribe I like to hang with.

One of the best pieces of advice I’ve gotten as an entrepreneur is to find other people who do what you do and figure out a way to hang out with them. If you like someone’s blog, read it, comment on it, and engage with the author at a conversational level. If you want to act, find other actors and figure out a way to hang out with them. If you want to write, join an association of writers or find people in your area who write and ask if they want to get together to talk. Continue reading

A clan gathers

In the past, clan members from different nations and cultures would walk for miles and even days to show off new children, play competitive games, drink, and eat. And we’re really no different from our ancestors.

Remi is our newest clan member

I was thinking this morning about how important it is that our “clan” gathers at least once a year at the beach. I always think I’m going to get a lot of reading and work done, but most of our time together is spent relaxing, hearing stories, cooking together, and having fun exploring new towns. In our family, there’s a silent commitment to set aside our differences for the week – which is really important. And we make an effort to be sure everyone feels included in whatever activities are going on.

Think about times in your life when you’ve gathered with your clan. Births, weddings, funerals, family trips. You spend some time reflecting on the past – telling old, funny stories. But you also spend time getting re-acquainted and strengthening family bonds. Continue reading

So I happened on a joyous razor clam…

I’m visiting in St. Augustine, Florida this week and was walking the beach yesterday morning. I was surprised there weren’t many shells when I happened on five beautiful razor clams. They looked like potential flags on a sandcastle and I carefully gathered them up.

Once I found the five razor clams, my walk shifted from random to focused, and my eyes moved from seeing very little to seeing patterns, colors, and textures. I ended up collecting dozens of razor clams along with a few olives, a couple of cat’s eyes, some pink barnacles, and even a beached, nearly complete purple and orange sea star. Continue reading

Get happy = get healthy

I’m traveling in Virginia this week, and a good friend told me about a study out of UCLA that explains four ways to make you to feel happier. The Dalai Lama worries that Americans don’t feel they have a right to be happy and that being happy shouldn’t be a goal. He says that’s nonsense, and if the Dalai Lama says “Go for it – it’s okay,” who are we to argue?

Here’s what’s important about happiness as explained by UCLA neuroscience researcher Alex Korb:

Continue reading

Tea, tea, tea

A few years ago, I decided to reduce my caffeine intake as part of an overall plan to cut back on acids in my system. I wasn’t a huge coffee drinker but knew I’d miss hugging a warm mug in the morning and decided to switch to lightly caffeinated green tea for my morning brew.

I’ve been very happy with the switch AND during the last Food Revolution Summit, was amazed to hear about many of the health benefits of green tea. One of the speakers this year said there wasn’t anything wrong with coffee except that if drinking it meant you were drinking less green tea, then you were missing out!

What’s so great about green tea? Here are some facts from Dr. Dean Ornish’s book, The Spectrum: Continue reading

The Creamer Dinners

A few years ago, it occurred to me that I had said the same phrase several times without taking action on it: “We should get together sometime.” Mostly this came up in the theater where I met folks in a show, got to know them, and then didn’t spend time with them again until I worked with them on another show and would once again hear myself saying, “We should get together sometime.”

As much fun as theater is, you don’t get a lot of time to talk and I was hungry for a good conversation with many folks I had met.

And I got to thinking about other friends and family I saw often but always in big groups. Big groups are fun but aren’t always great for conversation. Continue reading

100 Days of Wellness

I’ve been looking for a local meditation class and stumbled on this site with 100 wellness exercises. The videos are short, 4-6 minutes each, and focus on different aspects of feeling better – by being more grateful, clearing clutter, getting more sleep, beating sugar, and… you get the idea. It’s a great list.

Being a “get it done” kind of girl, I was like, “I’ll do all of these today,” and started to click through one to the next. But I decided instead to stop and spend a day on each one. I’ve tried to remind myself lately that I have time. I don’t have to get everything done right away. It’s a huge temptation for me to think, “Yes. Check. Got it done. Move on.” And rarer for me to take the time to deeply contemplate a thought or idea – especially if it’s a challenge or something negative about who I am or how I think. Continue reading