My Perfect Facebook Life? HA!!!

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

My life is not Facebook perfect. Personally, I don’t know anyone who does live a Facebook life. Yet it seems that every time I open my page, the whole world is on vacation or celebrating something special. There are lots of smiles and hugs and sunsets and rainbows. Be honest, don’t some of those photos and messages just drive you crazy!

For me, Facebook is one small snapshot of my life. Along with that comes stress, feeling overwhelmed, and yet another pair of pants that just don’t fit. However, we don’t post those images on Facebook. We don’t tell the world about our struggles and disappointments. Heck, that wouldn’t be as much fun to read about.

So, I caution you about Facebook and the messages you read there. Yes, I know it’s a great way to connect and share messages, but please be aware that everyone else experiences the same anxieties and doubts as you do. You are not alone. So, if you find all those accomplishments and perfect selfies depressing, I encourage you to close your computer, put your phone down, and call a friend. Find some comfort in the knowledge that you are human and everything does not have to be perfect in your life. I could not have said it better than the insightful Steve Jobs:

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”

 

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
Tags: , ,

Ageless Beauty

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

You are as old as you choose to feel. Really, I mean it! Of course, there are some factors that come into play as we age: a few more aches and pains, not as much flexibility, maybe a bit of a memory lapse now and then. I’m not denying that there are challenges as we get older. One of the biggest ones? People telling you: “you’re too old for that.” After some time, you begin to believe it yourself.

A perfect example of this is the hilarious movie titled Book Club. It’s a hysterical story of four “older” women who refuse to let their age dictate the way they want to live their lives. Each of them have chosen to write the final chapter of their life the way they want it to be. And you know what? You can do the same. You, also, can write the story of your life so it will bring you all the happiness and joy that you can possibly handle – with no judgment. After all, there are many limitations that are placed on us as we get older, but never let the number of your age be one of them

Recently, I was lucky enough to meet a wonderful woman named Jodi Lyon-Grams who started a series titled Your 50 Forward Story. I am honored that she included me to tell my story.  I hope it helps you feel comfortable with your age and enjoy every single minute of it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rvHtQr2twew.

 

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
Tags: , , ,

Lean Into Joy

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

How do we bring more joy into our lives? How can we feel more fulfilled?

That is the 64 million-dollar question. And it’s a difficult one to answer because joy means something different to all of us. One thing is certain, though: I’ve never known anyone to experience joy unless they find purpose in their life.

You know, we all have jobs that pay the bills. Some of us are lucky enough to find passion and purpose in our career. But if that’s not you, then you need to find something that does bring you joy in addition to your work. If your day job feeds your family, you must find something that feeds your soul.

Here’s an example: for years I went to a chiropractor. She helped me recover from a car accident and cured me from a neck pain that I thought would haunt me for the rest of my life. She was the best darn chiropractor I ever had. Then one day I noticed her earrings and complimented her. She said she made them herself, then led me into her back room that was filled with beads and wires and clasps. THAT is what she loved doing in her spare time. Her chiropractic business fed her family; her hobby of making jewelry fed her soul.

The website Etsy is filled with homemade wares that fill someone’s purpose. I’ll bet you that most of the people selling their handcrafted items have full time jobs that are not related to what they are selling on Etsy. Yet they have found a way to cultivate meaningful work. They have found a way to bring purpose into their life. And if arts & crafts isn’t for you, what about volunteering? What club or organization can you become involved with that brings joy into your life.

So, maybe it’s time to let go of “supposed to.” You’re supposed to be miserable at work or you’re supposed to work only at what brings in money. What else can you do, in addition to your day job, that makes your life meaningful.  What else can you do to lean into joy.

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
Tags: , , ,

I Salute You, My Dear Friend

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

I didn’t want to write this blog. I mean, I was really trying to avoid it. I didn’t want to talk about that life lesson we’ve all heard a million times. You know which one I mean:

Hug the people you love because you never know if this is the last time you will see them.

No matter how many times we hear it, we all seem to fall back into our old habits of taking each other for granted.

So that’s why I didn’t want to write about my dear friend, Jill Morganthaler.  I didn’t want to fall into that old cliché.

But I couldn’t help myself because I can’t seem to think of anything else…

Some people told me I screamed when I heard the news. Jill had suddenly and unexpectedly died while scuba diving.  She was on vacation with her husband. I refused to believe it, even after someone showed me the Facebook message that her brother posted.

“It must be a mistake,” I said. “Someone is playing a sick joke on us.”

But my kind, caring friend, the one holding the phone up for me, shook his head slowly, whispering: “It’s not a joke.”

Jill was a retired Army Colonel who served 30 years in the Army. She was an Iraq vet and had a stare-down with Saddam Hussein as he was leaving the courtroom. She was one tough woman. Over the years I heard stories of her triumphs and her defeats; of her happiness and her fears. We shared victories when we won the Toastmasters contest together and drank martinis before heading to our meetings. She was powerful and forceful – you always knew when Jill was in the room. She was bigger than life itself.

So, I’m not going to tell you to hug the people you love – you already know that. Instead I am just going to be content with the memories and lessons that Jill has etched in my heart. She lived life to the fullest. Even in the last hour of her life, she was doing what she loved – scuba diving. Even in her death, she is leaving behind a story to be told. We are all better for having known her.    I know my life will never be the same.

Rest in Peace, my Dear Friend.

 

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
Tags: , ,

The Power of the Mind

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

Last week I talked about dealing with the unpredictability of life.  For me, it was my husband’s surgery and waiting to hear how my life could possibly change.  I’m so happy to report that everything turned out fine.  It seemed like the anticipation and the “getting ready” phase were far worse than the actual surgery itself.

Now that I can finally breathe a sigh of relief, I am reminded once again of what helped me through this very difficult time.  Like all the other times before, it was my friends and family who were there for me.  With their constant calls, emails and texts, I never felt alone.   

One day, as I talked to a friend in a frantic voice, she calmly asked me: “How do you envision it?”   

Without hesitation, I answered: “That everything will be all right.”

Now, as I reflect on that conversation, it reminds me of this picture I have hanging on my bedroom wall.  It was created by Jason Kotecki and I love the possibilities it holds.  One box, the same box, can be anything you want it to be.  You can picture an outcome that you can work towards.  This concept truly helped me keep my sanity during an extremely stressful time.

So, take a minute to look at this picture, embrace all the different possibilities, then ask yourself:

“How would I fill in the blank line at the end of this picture?  How do I envision my life?”

 

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
Tags: , ,

Your Life Can Change in an Instant

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

One phone call, one email, one word can change your life forever – in an instant!

So, this morning, as I sit in the waiting room of the hospital, barely breathing as my husband is in surgery, I wonder what one word or phrase or sentence the surgeon will utter when he walks up to me.  What will be the expression on his face?  The look in his eyes?

Bottom line is – I’m scared.  I’m trying to stay positive.  After all, isn’t that what I share in my presentations?  Just like I’ve told so many people in my audiences: I’m writing my gratitude list, using the word curious and envisioning every positive picture I can think of.  But it’s so hard.  This experience is too fresh; too new.  I’m right in the middle of it.  So, for now I’m going to embrace the uncertainty and believe that everything will be ok.  After all, what other choice do I have?

One thing is for certain: life will change.  The quote I share here brings me some peace.  Maybe it will help you when you face some challenging times of your life.  Here’s to being strong and believing in yourself.

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Speaker
Tags: , ,

Hello – Is It Me You’re Looking For???

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

I don’t get it.  I mean, I truly don’t understand what is so important that everyone is constantly on their phone.  And I’m not just talking about the young people who grew up with this appendage attached to their ear.  It’s also the “older folks,” people my age, who can’t seem to survive 15 minutes without checking their phone.

Now I know I sound like an old lady – like a GET OFF MY LAWN old lady – but I can’t be the only one who feels this way. 

A few nights ago, my husband and I planned a “date” night.  We chose a lovely venue that offers a unique dining experience called The Vignette Dining Club.  The idea is to make you feel like you are dining in someone’s home.  They entertain small groups of approximately 16 people with an intimate atmosphere that celebrates good food, connecting with old friends and making new ones. 

As we were all seated and enjoying the delicious food, I turned to my right to hear what the chef was saying.  He was describing the dish that was in front of us and how he prepared it.  To my surprise and irritation, there were three people who were on their phones.  REALLY!  The teacher in me wanted to grab the phone from the woman next to me and scream: “You’re being rude!”  Of course, I restrained myself, but it was really, really hard.

I truly understand that there are valid reasons that people need to be available – babysitters, aging parents, and many more.  But checking your emails when someone else is talking is not one of them.  That blaring light from your phone affects the experience of those around you.  Can you go one or two hours without checking your email?  If not, maybe you should stay at home.  (Yikes – there, I’ve said it!)

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
Tags: , , ,

Find Your Safe Space

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

We are having an artic blast in the Midwest.  I’ve been born and raised in Chicago, so you would think I’d be used to the cold.  But I swear, it has never been this frigid.

As I sit in my home, wearing flannel everything and still feeling chilled, I couldn’t help but think about my trip to Churchill, Canada.  I traveled there a couple of years ago to see the polar bears emerge from hibernation and meander to the Hudson Bay, looking for food.  It was truly one of the most amazing experiences of my life.

Looking at the pictures, I was extremely touched by this one of a mother bear and her cub.  They both seem so content and comfortable and trustful.  Yes, that’s the word I’m looking for – trustful.  They have both found their spot where they feel safe.

That’s what I wish for you – and for me.  To find your safe space, your snuggle-up-and-believe-everything-will-be-alright space.  It’s nothing that can be ordered on Amazon or researched by Alexa.  It’s a place you have to discover on your own.  One that makes you feel all cozy inside with a belief that all is right with the world.

Yes, that’s what I wish for you on this cold and frigid night.  Along with a hot chocolate and a belief that warmer weather IS coming.

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
Tags: , ,

Starting with a Blank Page

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

Sometimes we can get overwhelmed with all the possible choices we have.  Think about it.  There was a time when you ordered a cup of coffee – that’s it.  Coffee.  Now??? We have an infinite number of decisions to make.  Let’s see: I’ll have a blonde latte with soy milk and only one pump of vanilla, please.  And that’s considered an easy order.  I’ve heard others that are far more complicated.

And it doesn’t stop there.  We make choices when it comes to color and price and health and so much more.  It’s no wonder we get overwhelmed and often paralyzed with the infinite number of possibilities we face every day. How do you get past this? 

Here’s the way I see it – When we start with a blank page we can create anything at all , we can decide on whatever is possible, and that can be very daunting and downright scary.  Everything, both large and small, is a decision to be made and we become paralyzed.  So, to help get through this, I’m trying to limit my list of choices.  I’ve decided to pick three of whatever it is.  Three – that’s it.  Then I research those three and make my decision at that time.  It’s tempting to check out everything that pops up on the internet, but I’ve gotten a lot better at hitting that delete button.

So, the next time you are planning a vacation, deciding what to make for dinner or researching a new car, pick three, limit your choices, and research those.  Don’t allow yourself to get bogged down with all the details.  See if that works for you.  It might make all those decisions a little bit easier.

Now, back to my blonde latte with soy milk and only one pump of vanilla.  This barista even wrote my name in the foam.  Nice choice!

 

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
Tags: , ,

I Ain’t No Quitter

Professional Speaker-Personal Development-Positive Attitude

National Quitters Day.  Have you heard of it? 

Apparently, it’s a day that has been set aside to recognize when most people abandon their New Year’s resolution.  Yes, they’ve actually done research to show that your motivation begins to waiver on the second Friday in January. This year it was January 12th.  So, all those goals you set, all those promises you made to yourself, are discarded.  Whether you vowed to exercise more, spend less money or take more time for yourself, you leave all that behind and fall back into your old habits.  It takes only two weeks to surrender to your old self.

Well, if you fall into the category of resolution quitter, all is not lost.  Let’s think about this in a different way:

What if we stop thinking of our resolutions as goals.  Instead, envision them as patterns that need to be tweaked.  What if we committed to 1%.  That’s it – only 1%, to being better every day.  That’s doable, isn’t it?   Not overwhelming at all.  Think about it.  Just 1% better at:

  • Losing that extra weight
  • Saving more money
  • Being kinder to our neighbor, our family, ourselves! 

I’m going to start my 1% tomorrow.  NO – I’m going to start RIGHT NOW.  Yes.  I envision a healthier lifestyle for myself.  I’m packing my bag for the gym tonight and won’t let excuses get in my way.  Yes, my 1% starts right now.  What about you?  Want to give it a try?

Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
Tags: , , ,

Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Recent Posts

Recent Comments

Categories

Archives