Jan. 18 ♥ 5 Lessons Learned from Living without the Internet

I had every intention of posting a blog last week, but I involuntarily had to quit the Internet. This is the story of the lessons that I learned. There had been a severe ice storm over the weekend and the tower that delivers my Internet connectivity was damaged. That tower lives on the top of an 11,000’ mountain, so the environmental conditions meant that it took 5 days until crews could safely ascend and make the necessary repairs. And during those long five days I had no Internet, social media, Netflix, electronic news, email…well, you get the picture. I had tried using my phone as a hotpot and depleted my data plan. I felt completely cut off. The first day wasn’t so bad, just a minor inconvenience. By day three I was actually feeling withdrawal. So much so that I drove the 25 minutes into town and camped out in a coffee shop multiple days. I was miserable. However, there were lessons to be learned once I began paying attention. A slower start to my day. I could wake up in a more relaxed manner since I couldn’t reach for my iPhone or iPad to catch up on what had happened in the last eight hours. I didn’t rush to check my email. Social media didn’t consume me. I actually started my day on my own terms rather than adopting the vibes out in the ether. More focused attention throughout the day I could maintain focus on what I was … Continue reading

Dec. 27 ♥ Celebrate and Complete 2016

So many people have looked upon 2016 as the worst year, ever. And yet… There have been really good times, right? This is the time of year when many of us hunker down, stay close to the fire and wait for the wintry blasts to end. And yet… We want to feel hopeful for the bright New Year. I’m recommending that we all — me included — take some time for reflection on this past year, taking stock of what occurred in our lives. It’s really important to find the gifts, lessons, challenges and blessings from the year that is ending. In this way we can truly celebrate what has come before and release whatever needs to be so we can start fresh with clarity as our New Year arrives. Along this lifetime path of discovery you will come to deeply know yourself, grow in wisdom, and rejoice in sharing your own, unique gifts, which the world sorely needs. You need to review this past year to recognize it happened to you for a reason. You may totally understand that or maybe the meaning is hidden in a cloudy mist right now. Either way, it’s OK. What’s important is the process of introspection and celebration that will help you clear the debris so that beautiful, gorgeous you can make room for the new possibilities that will be coming in your New Year. And so, I am offering a gift to help you examine this past year and set your intentions for … Continue reading

Nov. 23 ♥ Finding Gratitude when Bad Things Happen

Most people find it fairly easy to find gratitude for their blessings But how many of us can find gratitude for the bad things that happen to us? Or for the things we don’t want in our lives? Too often we respond as the victim when something bad happens to us. Or we concentrate on all of the things we’d like to be eliminated from our lives. Fair enough. We get to be human. We’re allowed to fell anger, jealousy, maybe even resentment. Sometimes our world gets turned upside down and we become totally numb. But the problem comes when we choose to stay in that mode, as angry, resentful, victim. My first husband died unexpectedly at a rather young age. I was lost initially in the throes of anger, disbelief, and traumatized shock. And I could have chosen to stay there. Everyone around me would have understood. I admit I was locked into this state for many months, and then barely able to function for many, many months after that. If someone had asked me to be grateful for the experience, I would have raged and sworn like a stevedore. Being grateful felt like insanity — for an extremely long time. And yet, over time as I processed my grief and came to terms with what had happened, I also began to open up to other opportunities: helping other women plan for surviving their spouses, which turned into empowering women in all aspects of their lives, which turned into … Continue reading

Oct. 12 ♥ Why You Must Let Go of the Past

How many things are you holding on to “just in case”? How many clothes still hang in your closet just in case you lose the weight that keeps hanging around your midsection. Or maybe you’ve kept those shiny black stiletto heels just in case you once again go to a classy wedding? Or maybe you’ve hung on to those casual Friday combinations that are no longer necessary for your lifestyle? If you’re really honest with yourself, you know these will likely never happen again. And yet you cling to the possibilities. I’ll bet you’re just afraid to let go of the past — because these things represent parts of you, the good times, memories of who you were — back then. Yet your past is not who you are now. True it helped you become who you are at this moment, and you need to be grateful for that. But nostalgia can weigh you down — and fill your closet. Hanging on to the past keeps you tied to what was and stifles your forward motion toward who you are becoming. So, let go of material things from the past. Maybe even consider a farewell ceremony to mark your goodbyes. And donating these items will make you lighter and help others who can use them. Consciously choose to live in the now of who you are, keeping only the things that represent her. Now It’s Your Turn: What do you hold onto that ties you to your past? How might these … Continue reading

June 22 ♥ Do You Know What’s Really Important?

Many of you have probably heard of or read about the raging forest fire in central New Mexico. On day 8 it’s still not completely under control and has displaced many people and animals while destroying homes and acreage. That fire came far too close for comfort. There was a day last week that filled me with great anxiety and helped me to understand what is truly important to me. As the fire grew in intensity, gobbling up more and more of the miles between it and my home, I realized that I seriously had to consider what would go or stay if we were called to evacuate. It was easy to include the humans and the pets. But what about things? I quickly learned my definition of “valuable”: legal and financial documents, computers and electronics, vehicles, photo albums, and things I couldn’t part with or replace. Yet that left so many things to fend for themselves. My husband and I eventually drew up a checklist and pared it down so that everything would fit into our two cars. And we had to reconcile ourselves to the fact that we might have to start all over. Luckily, the gods were with us, and we didn’t have to evacuate after all. And I’m grateful for the lessons in this experience. Things can be replaced, people and beloved pets cannot. I knew that intellectually but now I get that in my heart. I know memories, particularly those associated with objects, are durable … Continue reading