Sunday, April 16, 2006


approach is everything

i recently came across a quote from pat riley, an nba basketball coach, that says this:

"great effort springs naturally from great attitude"
a well stated truth in my experience. it made me think about how i have been approaching some of the goals in my life. what is my attitude about this endeavor or that project?

it's not something we are necessarily accustomed to paying attention to. we plan and strategize, we consult with others about the best methods or the right tools to go after what we want, but we don't always remember to choose the proper attitude.

and even when we do think ahead and choose an attitude that is likely to inspire us and move us forward, it often fades away as we delve deeper into our project and encounter road blocks or u-turns.

if you find yourself dreading working on that project you wanted to add joy and excitement to your life, something might need adjusting. or if the goal you set for yourself last month which seemed like a great challenge now inspires boredom, perhaps your approach is not as effective as it might be.

what attitude are you taking to the current projects in your life?

where could your approach use adjusting?

as always i'd love to hear your thoughts, feel free to post 'em here!

dream big,

Thursday, April 13, 2006


planting seeds

it's spring here in minnesota, and i've already got gardening on the brain. i love planting and watching things grow, it's such a rewarding endeavor. and as i think about the literal planting i'll soon be doing, it also brings to mind the other kind of seeds we plant in our lives.

networking is such a buzz word these days. but to me it seems more accurate to refer the activity of making connections and exchanging information as planting seeds.

it can be amazing to watch these seeds take root and grow. connections we made weeks, months or even years ago can surface in the present blossoming into amazing next steps along our path.

when you notice that this is true, it can change your perspective about meeting new people, about striking up conversations or handing someone your business card. we are so pushed in this culture of convenience to look for instant results that we can find ourselves dissapointed when an introduction doesn't yield immediate results. but if we view these encounters as planting seeds we can approach them in a whole new way.

when we remember that plants don't immediately spring forth in a garden, we can also notice that this is true in life. the efforts, endeavors and undertakings of today may not show their full impact until far into the future.

what seeds are you planting in your life?

what new developments have recently blossomed from the seeds you planted in the past?

where do you want to focus your cultivation for the future?

as always share your thoughts!

dream big & happy spring,

Tuesday, April 04, 2006


keeping conscious

my best friend sent this article along to me today. it's part of the daily om article series, which i often enjoy.

the article points out smartly and succinctly what we so often need to be reminded of - that life can get the better of us unless we actively choose to slow down and stay present.


Keeping Conscious: Staying Grounded In A Busy World

1. Live simply and live deliberately. By choosing not to get caught up in the details of this fast-paced world, you will discover that you have more time to enjoy being alive.

2. Stay in touch with yourself. Soul searching, meditation, and journaling are just a few of the many activities you can take part in to stay aware and learn as much as you can about your emotions, reactions, likes, dislikes, dreams, and fears. Having a solid sense of self gives you a firm foundation for living in this world.

3. Support or teach others as often as you can. This can help you form connections with people while also giving you an opportunity to make the world a better place.

4. Consciously choose what you will allow into your being. The media bombards us with visions of hate, war, and pain. Be judicious about what you read, watch, and listen to.

5. Acknowledge the beauty that resides around you. Whether you live in a sprawling metropolis or a stereotypical suburb, there are natural and man-made wonders just waiting to be discovered by you.

6. Nurture your ties to your tribe. If you don't have one, create a community that you can belong to. Modern life can be isolating. When you have a tribe, you have a circle that you are a part of. Its members - loved ones, friends, or neighbors - can be a source of support, caring, guidance, and companionship.

7. See the larger picture. Remember that the way that you choose to live is not the only way to live. Widen your perspective by exploring other modes of being through research, travel, and discussion.

8. Embrace the challenges that life presents to you, and challenge yourself often. After a time, even the most exciting jobs or lifestyles can seem routine. Never stop assimilating new knowledge about whatever you are doing, and your life will never seem dull.

9. Move your body. In this busy world, it can be easy to live a sedentary life. Movement reacquaints us with our bodies and connects us to the earth in a visceral way. It also restores our vitality.

10. Make time for stillness, silence, and solitude. The world can be noisy, and we are subject to all kinds of noises nearly every waking hour. We are also often "on the go" and unable to relax. Being alone in a peaceful place and making time for quiet can help you stay in touch with yourself.

dream big,

Saturday, April 01, 2006


taking charge vs. taking over

growing up the oldest child of three and the only girl, i learned early on how to be bossy. i spent uncounted hours herding my little brothers around barking commands and assigning them roles in the play that was my childhood. they resented the hell out of me for it. and although being bossy gave me a certain power, ultimately i knew it was a trap.

nobody likes being bossed around, and bossy people don't (at least from my experience) feel good about being the boss either. being bossy, or as we more often call it, 'controlling' is usually counterproductive. we do it in an attempt to be powerful, to make something happen, and instead it often leads to revolt and disappointment.

i didn't learn to be bossy in a vacuum. i was trained. (as i'm sure were many of you.) it was extremely convenient for my parents to have me be bossy - it helped keep my brothers in line. and i watched adults around me use the technique constantly. they bossed me around and clearly they were the people in control, so being bossy looked like the route to autonomy.

having reached adulthood myself, however, i am becoming more and more clear that being bossy is not all it's cracked up to be. my penchant for controlling situations does not lead to the results i'm after. so lately, i've been doing my best to let go of control, stop bossing people around and switch to taking charge.

on the face of things taking charge may seem a lot like being bossy. but here's the difference - taking charge does not mean that you are in charge. in fact, the smartest way to take charge of a situation is often to enlist others who know more than you do. or to bring a group together to fashion a plan drawn from all of your thoughts combined.

taking charge may not result in us getting our way. we might decide that someone else getting their way makes more sense this time around, or that the solution that works best for the whole group instead of the one best suited to our individual needs is the right choice.

taking charge means looking at a situation and seeing how you can best help it move forward in a positive direction. all of us should act powerfully in the world, it's what we were designed to do. but acting powerfully can mean a wide variety of things in the wide variety of situations we encounter on a daily basis.

a mentor of mine recently suggested that i needed to expand my leadership repertoire. "you can lead by inviting, by engaging, by needing, by asking" she said - "leading by bossing people around is good for certain situations, but it has it's limits."

whether or not you have a habit of being bossy to overcome, what would it mean for you to take charge of the situations in your life?

what situations do you want to make go well by acting powerfully?

as always i'd love to hear your thoughts, post 'em here!

dream big,

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