Just a little “Wacky”~~

Anyone who knows me, really knows me, would not be surprised if I said I was just a little “wacky”  🙂  I love all things bright , bold, and shiny.  I love a little bling on most of my clothes; even my workout sweatshirts!   I love my little red Volkswagen bug convertible, and I have entered contests for over 15 years ( and I win!). So, a tiny bit “wacky”~

My mother, embracing my personality, bought me a Calendar last Christmas called Dare to be Wacky…go figure!  As I read through the calendar I came to a few paragraphs that I loved and wanted to share them with you.

This is the year, and now is the moment. Rekindle your passions, and multiply your talents.  Embrace your inner wackiness and redefine your world.  Stand up for something worth fighting for, and confront the challenges that come your way …especially if they cause you to be afraid.  Make a difference in someone’s life, and in the process, you’ll change your own.  Don’t wait for a “better time”.  It’s your life and your story. So dare to be wacky…and truly live a life worth loving.!”

index

Sending a little whimsy your way hoping to encourage you! 🙂

It starts with a ” Yes!”~

Last weekend I got to be part of a beautiful group of women who had a vision to bless those experiencing life challenges: a Day of Pampering.  The incredible woman who initially had the idea that this would bring value and blessing to many is not devoid of challenges of her own.  However, when the idea (need) was birthed in her; she said YES!

index

Out of her “YES!” she was able to passionately involve numerous other women to share their gifts and talents to bless and encourage others; it was impacting on us all.  It started with a “Yes!”.

Two weeks ago Greg and I had the joy of heading to Louisiana to spend time with a courageous group of men and women who are dedicated to pursuing their faith.  All of them, at some point in their lives, were faced with the challenge of whether or not they would say “YES!” to their calling.  The “Yes!” has meant hard work, willingness to learn, and a life spent making a difference in the lives of their communities.  Due to their ‘YES!” they have impacted the lives of thousands for the good; bringing hope, healing, and faith to many.  It started with a “Yes!”

images

This week we had the honor of spending time in Nashville, TN with the Cutco/Vector Company and learned again of the value of “Yes!”  The President actually took over a failing company, invested all he had, applied ingenuity and creativity to build the strong, sustainable company they have today.  The greatest impact of the “Yes!” however is not only their world class product but rather, the incredible impact on young people.  Their sales force is built on college students whom they teach to sell, public speak, lead, and live life and leadership with intentionality!  This great company has impacted and continues to impact thousands of young people to grow and learn skills they could never learn in the classroom!  It all started with a “YES!”

images

Saying “YES!”  always has some risk attached; some personal cost ~ time, finances, a move, willingness to change, etc.  Yet, if we look at some of the greatest people, greatest ministries, greatest companies, there is a legacy of someone who was willing to be brave and say “YES!”

What about you?  Do you have an idea burning in your heart? An opportunity on the horizon? A dream still unexplored?  Need a tipping point that will drive you to a brave “YES!”?  Focus on the impact of your choice! Lives that will be changed! The legacy you’ll birth!

It starts with a “YES!”  🙂

Time to sail away from the shore~

images

During the past week I came across a quote that caught my attention right away; I felt that it embodied how I feel about this season of life.

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

As a young girl I don’t think I would have called myself brave or daring, rather I was most comfortable with things that were steady and safe.  Certainly I could get excited about the “idea” of taking big, bold action but in the end I would always stay safely on shore!

I believe that my fear of failure kept me on tasks and in situations that had fairly sure outcomes, no real risk or adventure involved. I never wanted to feel the weight of personal disappointment nor did I want to disappoint anyone. Thus, I did very little that was competitive in my early years.

In High School I branched out and joined the Swim Team; practicing hard to prepare for the swim meets on the weekends.  I remember one particular swim meet where I realized no one was in the lanes next to me and I felt a twinge of excitement that, perhaps, I was going to be the first one to the finish line. As I pulled to the edge of the pool with all the speed I could muster I popped my head out of the water to find that, actually, I was the last one in! That was my last swim meet.

Today, with years of hindsight under my belt, I fully recognize the value of taking risks, challenging myself, throwing off extreme cautions that choke my ability to dream, and giving myself permission to “fail forward.” Without being free to “sail away from the Harbor” I would never have had the life I have full of rich memories, opportunities, relationships, and fresh challenges!

Everyday I learn that life is short, mistakes only cause me to grow, challenges strengthen my resolve, and risk makes me depend more on God in every way. So, 20 years from now I don’t want a laundry list of things I should have done; wanted to do~yet feared exploring! Rather I would love to have a journal full of memories, experiences, and adventures to recall with satisfaction!

What about you? Playing it safe, hugging the shoreline? Perhaps today is your day to explore what it would look like to “catch the trade winds in your sails.”  Dream big! 🙂

Good Questions~

images

Powerful questions can challenge us, help us move forward, and give us the opportunity to assess our lives, motivations, helping us to understand how & why we sabotage ourselves and how & why we are motivated!!! As a Coach, questions are so incredibly important!!

Here are some good questions:

  • 1.  What do I want?
  • 2.  What is the difference between a wish and a goal?
  • 3.  What keeps me going?
  • 4.  What do I need in order to reach my goals?
  • 5.  What am I choosing this week?
  • 6.  If I were at my best, what would I do right now?
  • 7.  What is it to be exceptional?
  • 8.  How can I recharge my batteries
  • 9.  What am I grateful for?
  • 10. What have I learned about myself?

Ask these questions of yourself, ponder them. What is being revealed about YOU? What helpful truths have you recognized that could help you grow; move forward?

For me, answering these questions is both humbling and clarifying!  Good questions can create fresh understanding.  Ask yourself GREAT questions and watch yourself grow in fresh ways!!

images

I am a Millionaire~~

I am on vacation with my family…On the island of Kauai. This fact alone is enviable and I apologize if it even remotely appears I could be bragging.  However, this trip is not what makes me a millionaire! Rather, it is the people I am sharing this experience with that makes me feel incredibly rich!

535810_10151533735751513_1051378676_n

Today we spent 6 hours on a lovely beach; the sun, palm trees, and amazing, warm waters were sincerely lovely BUT the sweet conversations, deep laughter, family banter, rough housing, and the love expressed remind me again, I AM RICH!!

933947_10151533735796513_283750607_n

My family fills my heart.  These individuals are kind, smart and interesting. Watching them interact, respond kindly to those we encounter, and listening to their thoughts and engaging ideas, make me a MILLIONAIRE! It does!  I am deeply grateful and I do not take this precious family for granted!

I pray that when you experience your own families you feel so rich, so fortunate, so blessed~~ Aloha, my friends! 🙂

STOP Rushing Me!!!

My mother is a wonderful artist and has painted some amazing pictures for me. Most recently is a fantastic European setting that is so beautiful and inspiring.  Deserving a perfect framing job; I took the large painting to Micheal’s Craft Store to be professionally framed.  They do a good job!!

However, I walked into the building passing all the summer items on sale, 75% off…When in the first week of August is Summer over??  Stunning and sad news to me!!

index

As I passed a few aisles I encountered pumpkins, goblins, Bats, and Apple Cider Candles…seriously? Why are we setting up shop for next October??  This is August, it’s Summer, C’mon people!!!

images

And then the biggest stunner of all…..an aisle full of Christmas Ornaments!!! Are you kidding me??  Why does retail PUSH us so quickly??? Arrgh!

index

Then I began to think..how often to we live for tomorrow, a better season, a new day?  What would it look like to be fully present and appreciative for this day?  I love Summer and when it IS Fall I will love it. When the Holidays arrive I will enjoy every sweet minute of it!  But Today, just don’t rush me!!

” Choose happiness by taking life day by day, and being thankful for all the little things that mean so much!  Ritu Ghatourey

ENJOY THIS DAY!!!

Lessons From Misery Ridge~

As a Coach I meet so many wonderful people. Janelle is one of them. Janelle lives in  Canada and after a year of coaching she came to Bend to visit with me. I wanted our time to be full of fun, good conversation, and activity; yet also inspirational.

After pedicures, shopping, good food and laughter, it was time to venture out!

Misery Ridge!!

It was early as we loaded up with water bottles and headed to Smith Rock. I told Janelle the hike would be challenging yet the view from the top would be well worth the climb. I think she believed me until she actually saw Misery Ridge and recognized just how difficult it would be.

944714_10153030073825013_20949567_n

When we stood at the base of the mountain I told Janelle that we would break this hike into thirds and that we would think about different life challenges we were facing as we headed toward our goal to reach the top; imagining ourselves successful in facing those challenges as we conquered each phase of our hike!

We started out at a fairly fast pace; excited about moving forward! It wasn’t long before the altitude began to labor our breath. I asked Janelle if she wanted to turn back; we had made some good progress but were still far from the top. Should we go on or turn back?

7498047602_5c3e363423_z

We discussed the value of the ultimate goal of reaching the top yet we realized it was going to be a greater challenge as the path got steeper; the footing more unsure.  This second part of the hike would require us to pace ourselves, to take longer breaks to catch our breath, and to be intentional with where we placed our feet. Off we went! Partway through this phase of our hike a big snake slithers out onto the path catching us off guard! Do we turn back?

Finally we reached place where we would begin the third part of the climb; the steepest part! Janelle was amazed at how far we had come yet still feeling caution about where we needed to go. Do we continue? Do we turn back?  Was this view really worth this effort?  After some good discussion we committed to the goal of reaching the top and pressed on.

images

During this last phase of our “journey” the altitude was making it hard to breath and the shale on the path caused us to feel our feet slipping. We realized that this last push would require extra sure footing, that we would need to hold each others arms to prevent us from falling and getting hurt. Slowly and intentionally we made our way up the switchbacks towards our goal. Closer and closer, steeper and steeper! With a final push we rounded the corner and gazed at the glorious view from the top! Amazing!!  The success was thrilling! We were seeing a view from the top that many people will never see! We did it!!

1043990_10151472557086513_1781550928_n

Our lives are a lot like a hike up Misery Ridge.  You start out full of excitement, goals, dreams~ ready to take on the world!  You can imagine your goals, you can visualize  conquering your challenges. Yet life starts to get hard, to required more stamina, or make you feel uncomfortable and there is a desire to abandon the very goals that mean so much to you.

As challenges come it’s important to pace yourself; catch your breath. Often times we expect so much of ourselves not recognizing the impact of “climbing higher”. We forget to nourish and replenish ourselves so that we can press on….one foot in front of the other. Often times, just like our surprise snake, obstacles make come out of nowhere~~Do we abandon our goals because of them?

I wonder how many people get to the last third of the Misery Ridge hike and turn back because they are too tired or afraid to climb higher? Right before they have the joy of that unprecedented view!!  How many of us get so close to reaching our personal goals, facing life long challenges, creating healthy relationships, or stepping into fresh dreams, and abandon them because it just feels impossible, right before we see success?

As Janelle and I learned; as it gets closer to the top, as the challenges get harder; you need the support of your fellow “climbers” to keep you from losing your footing, to encourage you to keep climbing; to press on! I would never climb Misery Ridge alone for that very reason!

I have to say that the BEST part of the climb is the celebration at the top! The joy of reaching the goal and the satisfaction that we didn’t quit!  Every person I have led to the top of Misery Ridge has been so glad that they didn’t turn back before seeing the view from the top!

Do you have dreams, goals you want to attain, challenges you must face? Are you halfway there? Turning the last difficult corner? Or have you just begun? Remember these few lessons from the mountain:

Pace yourself, stay hydrated, place your feet carefully, catch your breath, stay committed to looking forward; not back, and surround yourself with fellow climbers (healthy support systems) who can hold your arm if you slip and celebrate your WIN at the top!

You’ll never know what you’ll miss if you are afraid to “climb”.

8000_10153030073880013_971788515_n

Dr. Desiree Margo~~

This past weekend my family had the pure joy of watching my amazing sister receive her Doctorate!  We are all so proud of her! At graduation we shouted, hooted, and clapped with all our might to show her how proud we are of her. Following the graduation we gave Dr. Desiree Margo gifts to further show how proud we are of her!

988655_10151501892893857_1577201620_n

However, the graduation ceremony was only a tiny reflection of the cost of earning this degree! The work, commitment, sleepless nights, numerous papers, and the dreaded dissertation required every ounce of energy she had.  While accomplishing this goal, Desiree also worked full time as a school principal of a thriving elementary school!

Why is this significant to me?  Attaining goals, especially big goals, requires commitment and sacrifice!  To move toward a fresh milestone in our lives we may have to assess our current commitments and allow ourselves to say “no” to some involvements for a season!

I am certain that late at night while working on her degree my sister must have wondered “what have I gotten myself into?”! Yet, the look on her face at graduation made it was easy to see that it had been worth the work to receive an honor given to only  1% of the population.

What about you? Are there goals you want to achieve but are afraid of the “cost”? Could focusing on this new goal (s) force you out of your comfort zone for a season? Whether attaining education, building a quality marriage, starting a business, getting healthy, writing a book, or any other goal that would be important to you; there will be adjustments needed.

Oh, but the JOY in accomplishing your goal will be so worth it! Once you begin; stay your course, dig deep, lean into your support systems, and celebrate every WIN!!

What milestone is ahead of you? No better day to get started than today! Thank you Dr. Margo for you inspiration. 🙂

970556_10151438210376513_1314568020_n

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”  C. S. Lewis

What would it be like to work for YOU?

Soon after Greg and I married, we headed to Modesto, CA for a teaching role  Greg had been offered.  Teaching, having his own classroom, & getting to know the kids was really enjoyable! However, the school principal was really difficult and uninspiring.He lead the school with and iron fist and left the staff continually discouraged.

index

Since that time we have worked with and for many different types of leaders; we’ve learned a great deal.  Under certain types of leaders we have flourished, under others we’ve have experienced discouragement.  Leaders can vary from person to person.

Not too long ago we started our own company and had to ask ourselves the question “what would it be like to work for us?”.  What kind of leader caused us to feel inspired and purpose filled? What kind of leader left us discouraged?  How can we take our experiences with leaders and do our best to build a strong, vibrant team?

In a recent article by Geoffrey James, he gives a quick list of the traits of inspiring leaders, and the traits of uninspiring leaders:

Inspiring leaders are motivated by helping their team to be successful.  Uninspiring leaders are motivated by their own personal satisfaction.

Inspiring leaders feel an obligation to “give back” to their team and the community. Uninspiring leaders feel no real obligation to “give back”; rather their focus is on having more money/buying physical objects.

Inspiring leaders are grateful people; they appreciate the opportunities they have and the people who have worked alongside them.  Uninspiring leaders are fairly self-satisfied.  They secretly believe their success is a natural result of their clever, smart work.

Inspiring leaders are people of deep convictions. They don’t necessarily wear them on their sleeve, but their beliefs affect everything they say and do.  Uninspiring leaders are opinionated about what they believe and expect others to adopt their beliefs as well.

Inspiring leaders care about people. They look for ways to impact those in challenging circumstances.  Uninspiring leaders have a tendency to find people challenging, even irritating.

Inspiring leaders share the credit, uninspiring leaders spread the blame.

Most inspiring leaders have many, if not all, of these traits.

Do you lead a team (or a family)?  What kind of leader are you?  Do you inspire others? Does your leadership style cause your team to say “Gee, I’m sure glad I work here!”  Aspire to be a leader others want to follow. 🙂

Lead well.