My 3 Words – 2015 edition

I stopped making resolutions when I turned 40. All I was doing was setting myself up for failure.  I stopped having carved in concrete goals within a year or two of that.  Because every time I did my life became the epitome of the old saying “want to hear God laugh, tell him your plans”.  Instead, I tried to find something that would give me direction and put structure around my goals for the year without making me carve them in stone and set myself up for disappointment.  Something that would allow me to lay a path that was flexible enough to allow for inevitable change, but clear enough to keep me on the right trail.

Then my wonderful Twitterverse of friends exposed me to the annual My Three Words and I had my blueprint.

My words for 2014  – tolerance, listening and reading/writing – ending up being somewhat prophetic for what the year was going to bring.  2014 required a lot of tolerance, a lot of listening and consisted of a lot of reading, but not as much writing as I would have liked.

Following in the tradition I started in 2013, I let my three words come to me as I envisioned what I wanted from 2015.  They couldn’t be just any three words though.  They had to be words that embodied an overall attitude for 2015 and words that implied or would move me to action.

So here are My Three Words for 2015 –

Words – This is essentially a evolution of Reading/Writing from 2014. I want to absorb and share more words.  I want to read more.   I want to read many different things.  I want to re-read some of the classics and my old favorites.  I want to read the Bible cover to cover again and really absorb it this time.  I want to write more. I want to finally take all the things that are in my head whether it is inspiration, musings, marketing and social media opinions or fictional stories and share them with the world.  Lastly, I want to do more public speaking.  Having spent a year away from it, I realize how much I really love speaking, training and educating.  I have made a commitment to myself to do more of it this year.


Service – I learned this year the difference between saying you want to be of service to others and actually, actively, selflessly being of service to others.  I have always tried to be of service to others, but this past year put me squarely into it.  I realized that making the time and effort and going after opportunities to be of service is different than doing it when it comes your way.  I want to do more of the first and will still accept opportunities that come the second way.

Another lesson that I have committed myself to this year is learning to let others be of service to me.  I have always been the one that took care of everything and everyone, fixed everything, did it myself because it was easier/quicker than counting on someone else to do it.  This year that changes. I will allow others to be of service to me.  I will not rob them of the opportunity to give of themselves.  I know how satisfying it feels to do so.  It is time I let go and give others the space to feel the same way.  I will not stop being a caretaker.  It is who I am.  I will start allowing others to also take care of me.  This one will not be easy, but it is necessary.


Routine – This is one of those concepts that I know what it means to me but it may be a bit hard to describe to someone else.  The last few years have been a unpredictable mish-mosh of being in a routine and not being in one depending on the needs of others – friends, clients, loved ones, volunteer commitments, etc…  This last year has held a completely different kind of routine interrupted by frequent detours.  In 2015, I want to start figuring out the routine that suits me best.  Having a routine of working, speaking, reading, writing, exercising, cooking, sitting still…whatever it is, I want to figure out the rhythm of MY life and then add in all of these other things to it.  I have always worked best and been happiest with a little structure in my life.  For me, routine is not about only being structured.  This year it is going to be about having the time, energy and focus to accomplish the things I set out to do and that still allow me to roll with spontaneity, joy, excitement and a need for stillness.

What are your words for 2015?  How can I help you with achieving them? 



It is an individual and curious quest that sends us each on our path to finding inspiration.  Yet once found, it opens a world that few would have imagined previously.  We all know that somewhere inside of us we have unique abilities, talents, skills, whatever you chose to call them.  I've recently come to believe that it is discovering what truly inspires us that leads us to uncovering those hidden abilities.   I know that there are many different things that inspire me on a daily basis sometimes as simple as a sunny day, a smile on my kids faces or a tweet from one of my friends/mentors/educators on Twitter.  The list goes on and on and at the moment that they pass my consciousness they mark themselves as sparks to be remembered.  My problem is that I forget and become complacent, failing to act on the sparks of inspiration that wind themselves through my daily life.  

In exploring the directions I want my life to take, I am realizing that I really need to start paying more attention to the things that inspire me.   That the failure to follow the occasional flights of fancy that make me sit up and take notice is becoming a roadblock on the pathway to my dreams.  I need to learn to put more faith in inspiration to guide me in taking the correct fork in the road that will lead to the center of my passions.  So that now is my mission – follow my instincts, discover my inspiration and follow them both to my passion.  It will not be an easy road, changing old bad habits never is, but it is one that I hope will make my life an inspiration to others.  And isn't that what life should be about, bringing joy, inspiration and light to others?   What inspires you?  And how can you use it to improve the vision and focus on your passion and dreams?

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Holiday Lists – what do they say about us?

Every year about this time we sit down and write our holiday lists – whatever holiday we may celebrate. Children spend hours pouring over toy ads getting ready to send off their letters to Santa.  Adults, while acting reluctantly, compose a list of things they hope to get rather than the ugly sweater that their favorite great aunt seems to find so amusing and another list of the things they truly dream of having.

Unspoken (unwritten?) in all of this are the things we all wish the holidays and the coming year will bring – health and happiness to our loved ones, a more stable, peaceful world, the ability to make the world around us a happier and brighter place. It is amusing and curious that we often do not actually write these things on our lists, but I have yet to find someone who would not place those things at the top their "wish" list.

Which leads us to a very interesting question about our holiday lists?  What do the items on them say about us?  Have you ever stopped to think about that?  I only did recently when I started putting together a list.  Now, I have to clarify that this list did not start out as a holiday list.  It just started out as a "wish" list.  Things that I would like to have at some point.  Watching this list evolve, I have realized just how eclectic my tastes have become and I guess how varied my interests have become. There are things on this list that I would not have considered wanting a couple of years of ago.  For example, a lot of the techy, geeky things – Bart exposed me to a greater view of that world and as a result, I have fallen in love with gadgets.  My tastes in music have changed – thanks to my sons, their friends and my friends.  The maturity that is coming with age has awaken desires to develop talents that I always knew were there, but never took the time to nurture.  I have also come to face the side of me that loves the finer things in life.   What I find reassuring about these discoveries about myself is that I have not lost anything in this progression, I just have grown.   And that ranks right up there with those other unspoken wishes that we all have at the top our lists.

So now that I have stoked your curiosity, here are some of the things on my Christmas list –

A new HDTV with built in DVD player (just because I want one)

A Canon ESO Digital Rebel XTI with a flash set-up & accessories (to let me start taking the pictures that my eyes see)

A Nintendo Wii (yes, this is for me – not the boys!)

A Macbook  (I became an Apple convert when my love affair with my iphone started)

A silver engraved business card holder (to hold my cards for my new business)
itunes gift cards (for all of the music that my sons are exposing me to – Brooks & Dunn to Breaking Benjamin)

Hairspray the DVD or any of the other John Waters films (to make me laugh)

A set of Rachel Ray's cookware & knives (to encourage me to get back in the kitchen where I love to be and where I feel close to my mom)

An Amazon Kindle   (just because they are so cool!)

And lots of gift cards to the book store  (because sometimes you just want a book that you can keep and re-read)

Any of Rachel Ray 30 minute meal cookbooks  (so I don't have an excuse not to cook)

A blue cashmere sweater (because they are just so soft and I look good in blue)

Knee high black leather boots (they're sexy – enough said)

A chenille bathrobe  (to be all warm & cozy)

Ok – enough – time to stop. I could keep going on, but I think you get the idea.  As I read this list again, I realize that I am not entirely sure what it says about me at this point in my life, but whatever it is, I rather like it – there is enough variety to ensure that I'm not a dull person.

So what does your list have on it and what does it say about you?

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Choices – move or stay

There comes a time in our lives when we realize that we have to make choices.  Many, many different choices, including whether we either move on and up or sit, stagnate and be miserable.   Recently, I figured out that I was at the Make a Choice point.  I need to examine my life and make choices about my future.  There has been a lot that has happened, at lot of it out my control, that has impacted my vision of my future.   What I kept forgetting is that our visions of the future don't mean anything. They are just that – visions, stray clouds floating around our environment.  Until we build a solid base of  dreams & hard work under those visions, we have nothing.  We build our way to the clouds with the passion of our dreams, the desire to achieve them and the hard work we are willing to expend to get to them.  And when that vision has to change, it means that somewhere a rung was missing from the ladder or a brick from the wall. Maybe not one that we forgot, but sometimes one that we gets removed.

So I have a vision of my future that appears to no longer be viable.  The people and places that I had imagined are not likely to be in the new future that I now have to envision and build.  What now?   Thus, I am at my choices.  Do I stay here where I am emotionally?  Letting these feelings rule what my future shall be.  Or do I find a way to navigate through these emotions so that I can begin to move forward and start to build something underneath a new vision of my future.   I know that some people would say that it is an easy decision.  It seems so obvious.  Move on.  Don't let yourself be mired in misery.  But as all of us who have been through this particular set of choices knows, it's not that easy.   I just have to figure out how to do it anyway.  

The question now becomes, how do you go about changing your vision of your future?  Suggestions?

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