Before and after

You have points in your life where everything was going in one direction, then “this” happened, and your life headed off in a new direction. You know what I’m talking about? Those big “before” and “after” moments.

For me, this would include the day in 8th grade I decided to try out for cheerleading which changed who I hung out with in high school, what I did with my free time, and how active I became in my class.

Another big turning point was my decision to go to the University of Virginia. This meant I met certain wonderful, life-long friends, chose a certain major, and hated being at the University so much I chose to go hiking for 3 months with an Outward Bound program. This, in turn, was another HUGE turning point because that’s where I met the person I married and had children with. Continue reading

Things I’ve learned so far

I’m in a brainstormy mood tonight and decided to jot down things I’ve learned so far… Twenty was easy so I went to 30. Then I got to 33 which seemed like an odd number so I went to 35. The list was getting a little long but 35 seemed like a weird place to stop, so I rounded up to 40.

Thanks to all of my guides who are behind this list. Here we go. Continue reading

Wishing v. Working

When people tell you to “follow your passion,” it sounds so easy. “Just follow your passion and everything will turn out great.” Make a wish and it will come true. Right?

What you don’t hear is that it takes work to make your wishes come true.

I don’t want to downplay wishing. Dreaming big schemes is the first step to creating a new reality. But once you come up with a terrific vision, how do you get from “energy bubble” to “done?” Continue reading

Taking the first small step

I had a big, cool idea in the 1990s. I wanted to write a novel. I decided this at a crazy-bad time. I had two little kids at home and a demanding job. But I thought about writing all the time. I had to figure out a way to write a novel.

My first baby step was to make a list of novels I loved and characters I wanted to meet in real life. I gave myself a week to brainstorm all of my favorite books and characters.

Then I took another week to think about common threads. What appealed to me most in my favorite novels? And what types of characters was I most drawn to? Continue reading

Making a Big Decision

When you’re faced with a challenge, you feel it first in your gut. Something is up. You think and think about it, but how do you decide when so many factors seem to weigh in equally? Back to your gut. This isn’t an intellectual problem – big decisions come from your gut. You want to be decisive. Why is making a choice so hard?

  • You don’t want to make a mistake.
  • You don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings.
  • You don’t want to flip-flop on something you decided before.
  • You may not want to stick out in the crowd – or within your friends and family groups.
  • Habits are hard to break; it’s hard to start a new routine.

So look for common threads. Continue reading

What are you leaving at the door?

“We all want to belong and to love each other.”

The Rev. angel Kyodo williams was one of my favorite speakers at the Good Life Project camp a few weeks back. Thoughts from her talk continue to roll around in my head.

Most of us give up something in order to belong. We dress a certain way. We speak a certain way – and don’t speak a certain way. We don’t want to offend anyone and we don’t want to make anyone angry. It’s all really civilized but it isn’t always real.

What would it be like if when you entered a room, you brought in your whole self? What if you brought everything in with you? Continue reading

Words can start a revolution

“Every conversation won’t change your life. But any conversation can.”

Like much of what I’ve posted for the past week, this idea came up at the Good Life Project camp last weekend. I’ve been thinking about this in a couple of ways.

  1. Listen – new ideas and insights can turn your head.
  2. Start a conversation – you never know what you’ll learn.
  3. Speak up – your voice is a gift and it’s important to speak your truth.
  4. The world is mysterious. And being open to the idea that new thinking can come from anywhere is one of the most delightful mysteries.
  5. You don’t always plan change – sometimes it just falls on you.

Continue reading