2018 Vision from 2017 Lessons

2018 Vision from 2017 Lessons

Year-end brings a natural inclination to reflect on what we did well in 2017. How close did we come to the vision and goals we set 12 months earlier? What could we have done better? What gifts and lessons did the year bring us? What habits or behaviors do we want to leave at the doorstep of 2018? These are provocative questions we could each ask ourselves, and hopefully many of us do, throughout the year. But as life scurries about and we get caught up in the day-to-day, it is easy to slip into autopilot, to snuggle in the comfy confines of routine and habit. For me, I constantly check in with what triggers me, what causes emotional reaction, whether people or situations. Those are ideal moments to teach me what the wounded child deep inside has stirred up and upset me. As an internal exercise, it frees me from automatic reactions, enhances my desire to learn more about myself and heals wounds that need healing. We each have wounds and shadow beliefs in our subconscious, regardless of how great we see our childhoods.  I have yet to meet a client, myself included, who doesn’t harbor the wound of “not good enough” or “unworthy.” That self-perception commonly has roots in situations or people that made us feel unworthy. The flip-side, however, also rings true. If we are brought up believing we are special, the moment someone finds us not special, the wound of unworthy is triggered. I strive always to see how these wounds tend to surface. When my inner child is wounded, my gut reaction is to strike out...
My Call to Summit:  Kilimanjaro

My Call to Summit: Kilimanjaro

I am writing a book. I never thought about being an author although I always found writing a powerful avenue for self-expression. When I decided to climb Kilimanjaro, I felt a call to write about the experience, not only to share my training and the climb to the summit but also to record the many coachable opportunities I found along the way. These last few weeks following the climb, I have allowed my feelings to evolve and take shape, stepping back and bearing witness to what was and remains an extraordinary experience, a “letting in” as a way of opening and “letting go.” Before the climb, I spoke with my spiritual guide whom I first met in Thailand. I mentioned I was hoping the climb would produce a spiritual experience for me. His sage advice was to stay present and quiet, spend time alone and let my feelings surface without judgment. And off I went. Then the most surprising thing happened. The call to summit and the journey there and back was the spiritual awakening. The moment I saw the sign that announced arrival at the summit, I began to cry, as an uncontrollable and unexpected explosion of joy and gratitude surged through my body. As I walked towards the sign, I continue to cry, for several minutes, until I came to stillness under the sign where I then sat. Those last steps not only broke me open, they also, as I later recognized, opened me to wholeness. I have been on a journey of self-awareness and healing for more years than I care to count, taking both baby...
Happy Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day, unlike some holidays, can provide a chance to reflect and take deep personal stock. I am a mother of two grown sons and the grandmother of three baby girls. I have daughters-in-law who are thick in the midst of raising babies. I coach women in their thirties with children of varying ages and others who want nothing more than to be mothers as their biological clock ticks faster and louder. As I take stock about motherhood, I have much to think about. My mother is alive at 90 years young and I am so grateful to have her. I grew up wanting to be like my mother and I raised my sons trying to emulate her. It wasn’t until years later that I felt the call to be different as I experienced parenting ways that worked for her but didn’t always work for me. Nonetheless, the underlying truth is that she and I both, in our own parenting styles, had the best intentions. The women I coach shoulder many challenges. Women are, for starters, forever questioning themselves and their abilities. Our shadows expand to full bloom, however, when we navigate motherhood. We want the best for our children and to do the best job we can. Like I was in my early mothering days, many woman want to be like their mothers and as many strive for the opposite or at least many degrees removed. Throw into the mix the predominant childrearing philosophies of the day, and it all gets quite complicated. I remember every stage and worry about parenting. I remember the victories and the losses,...
Dear 2017,

Dear 2017,

Dear 2017, Here we are! I am so happy to be here with you.  I spent a good amount of time in reflection as 2016 came to an end. What did I achieve and what do I still want to achieve and how will I get there? What were my lows, and what did I learn?  What were my highs and what did I learn? What am I most grateful for from both the highs and the lows?  I know I worked hard at fulfilling personal dreams and aspirations.  Leaning, growing, working, trying.  Trying and doing and more trying and more doing. I feel like the end of 2015 was just here and I was doing the familiar reflection then and the year before and then in a  blink of an eye, I will be reflecting on 2017 as I step in to 2018.  It is a little scary how fast time moves and how many things I accomplished and yet how many things I haven’t achieved yet.  Obviously, I have more control over some of my intentions and desires and some are still a work in progress as my perceived desires are still in conflict with my underlying commitments and shadows.  For sure I know;  If I desire something but still have not achieved it, then there is still something I am more committed to than what I say I want. I know fear is telling me to protect my heart.  To that end, I never let someone in to the most scared interior regions of my heart and until I can completely let go; I will never...
After the Fall

After the Fall

  I am on the plane heading home from my trip to Thailand.  This trip was unbelievable on so many levels that I am still processing its innumerable elements.  One thing that stands out is how indescribable it is to travel alone.  I am blown away at how long it took me to do this.  All those years of searching for someone to travel with me and feeling more than once like a victim. Once again I see that playing the victim does nothing but limit one’s life. I speak often in my coaching about victimhood.  Just like all the other times that giving up victimhood leads to major AHA moments; this was no different.  I was excited the whole time to be making it work and getting around and I couldn’t believe how wonderful all the people were that I met.  First I was at a beautiful emotional and physical detox spa and I don’t think I met another person from the States the whole time I was there.  That was such a different experience for me.  I felt very international.  Connecting was easy.  I am gifted with the ability to open to others which facilitates their opening up to me.  The fact that most people were there working on something, made it even more intriguing.  A group of us just became a little discussion group, openly discussing what was coming up around our sessions with the most amazing coaches and energy workers I ever experienced.  Unlike most of the people I met, I didn’t come with an agenda.  I came because as a coach I am always...
Loving Yourself is Just the First Step

Loving Yourself is Just the First Step

For most of my adult life I had romantic love, and then I didn’t and then I had it again and so on and so on and so on. Always the having or not having. Always the joy or the heartbreak. Always the quest. I have spent endless hours discussing countless scenarios with my girlfriends. Women can spend more time discussing love and lovers or the lack there of than men, even in their wildest imaginations, could imagine. We collude with each other and conjecture what we should or shouldn’t do or what the man meant or feels or doesn’t.  It’s exhausting and yet we never stop. Endless and painful and yet comforting and familiar.  Recently, I realized I was looking for love in all the wrong places. I realized that love had to come from “within” and not from “out there”. My go to belief was that self-integrity was paramount to achieving self-love. One’s word is not only golden but it is the quickest avenue to achieving self- love. But I know now that self-integrity is not enough. To truly love oneself, we also need to self-actualize. We need to be living up to our soul’s potential. We need to be at least moving in that direction.  We need to understand we have a purpose on this earth, each time we come around. This purpose transcends the drama of our lives. We need to be bigger than our littleness.  These last four years have been an interesting journey for me. A never-ending journey of introspection and learning and growth and self-discipline. I have been learning to love both my divinity and my humanity. My awesomeness and my flawsomeness....
Stepping Up

Stepping Up

    Bucket lists are an interesting phenomenon.  For me, they are more than just a list of somedays and maybes but they stand as a call to action.  They call to me, pull me towards them, shouting at me at times that the only thing keeping them on my list are my own fears. They seem harmless enough when I add them to my list but in reality they act as reminders that I am allowing myself to play small and not live to my full potential.  They leave me feeling disempowered and disappointed.  I put them on my list lovingly, but they mock me and tell me that in order to have the life I envision, I need to move past my fears and play all out. So I have taken steps to move past my fears.  I am consciously choosing to  put my faith into my faith and move forward and play all out. I have never taken a big  international trip alone and yet I give my light away to women who do.  I am always so impressed and always wonder why I don’t do that.  I feel like it is a very important step in my self-actualization.    So I have booked a magnificent trip to Thailand for 18 days.  I am going to do a bike trip, and then a beautiful yoga, meditation and detox retreat.  I am really excited and I feel energized and powerful. My second item that I have taken off my bucket list has been so transformational that I wish I had done it years ago and I recommend it...
Navigating the Big Birthday

Navigating the Big Birthday

  Birthdays are such an interesting event. The date is always special to us-we all think of that “date” and always remember it. It is ours! Some people like to celebrate the whole week but we all at least acknowledge the day. I need to give thanks to the Universe for blessing me with yet another year on this beautiful planet. I am thankful for my life and everything the Universe has been teaching me these last few years. I feel like I am my own emotional science project. Being the observer instead of the reactor is so much more interesting for me. That doesn’t mean I don’t get triggered but they are so much less often and so much less reactive. My initial reaction is the same but I quickly recover as I do my work to uncover the shadow belief or wound. This birthday has really had me in a tizzy because I am turning 60! I honestly don’t know how this happened. Yesterday I was in my forties and running marathons and dancing on tables. (Yes, I have been known to dance on tables). 60 is such a substantial number. I can’t even pretend that I am still middle age. I think I just hit the beginning of old age. I look in the mirror and 60 is not looking back at me but I know it is true. But there is no alternative that beats growing older so I am here to embrace my birthday and my age. The nice thing about having so many friends for so many years is that most of us...
Self-Love; the best gift of all.

Self-Love; the best gift of all.

Valentine’s Day I grew up as the youngest of three sisters.  Every year since I can remember my father would bring each of his four girls (my Mom included) a card and a gift.  It was a loving gesture.  It always made me feel loved and special.  It developed one of my strongest love languages: giving and receiving gifts.  It fed my little girl view of waiting for my loving man to come and shower me with his love and gifts.  That belief and image stayed with me most of my life.  The Universe brought me men who showered me with gifts and that just reinforced my belief: my husband, my boyfriends after and then my grown sons. It has only been the last few years that I have been working on loving myself first and foremost.  It has been a journey of introspection and facing my demons and my shadows; both light and dark. It has been a journey of staying in integrity with my word and staying in alignment with my vision for my future. Most importantly I have learned that the best way to learn about myself is to be in relationship with another human being.  We are all mirrors of each other and the Universe brings us people in our lives to show us what we don’t see in ourselves.  I have quoted for years; “You get what you accept”.  When we say we want a loving relationship but don’t have one, we are being mirrored back our inability to love ourselves first and foremost. I feel like I have come so far to be...
Nature is our playground to face our fears.

Nature is our playground to face our fears.

I believe exercising in nature is a metaphor for life. This week I was in a ski lesson that I knew before I went would be outside my comfort level. The instructor is a kick-ass female who loves to push the envelope. Even when the envelope isn’t hers! These women were all better skiers than I was and even they were apprehensive about the route we were taking down the double black Highland Bowl. I do the Bowl every week or so but always come down one of the easier double black runs; leaving the straight down the middle for those die hard killer skiers. I mentioned at least twice that it might be better if she placed me down one level in to another group. I honestly didn’t need or want to be in the highest group. She may have been listening but she wasn’t granting my wish. Protocol for me and my friends is to take one easy groomer run to wake up and warm up our legs and then proceed to do the climb up to the Bowl with our skis on our backs. Oh, but not this instructor. Two double black diamond runs and one,  which to me, is the hardest run on the mountain. It didn’t help that one of the girls fell and slid and popped her ACL.
I was afraid of this never ending and very steep hill with a double fault line and she told us we had to ski  over the top without stopping to look over the edge and we had to make ten turns before we stopped. Thankfully she...

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