Tag Archives: mindfulness


Spring is here!

I woke up to sunshine, bird chirping, an easy breeze, and a feeling of renewal.

Do I mean to sound all “love, peace, and hair grease”? Yes, I do – and here’s why…

I just returned from a four day summit with Martha Beck and about 310 Martha Beck trained coaches. If you know Martha’s work – then you can imagine large energy particles shooting off every person – causing the next person to generate a mega-abundance of more energy. (If you don’t know Martha’s work…well, I invite you to check it out.)

As the beauty of the of the four days rolled on – I was a bit worried about reentry into my multigenerational home life and getting back to writing (yup, behind on my eBook), coaching clients, and prepping for workshops. I wanted to hold on to the joy, magic, serenity, and renewal I was feeling during the summit. Instead of getting my panties in a wad about forcing my life flow go exactly the way I wanted – I decided to create a manifesto of how my reentry into life would be…I shifted my thoughts and energy.

I will focus on calm energy. I will stay open. I will not force myself back into a frantic pace. I will sit and listen more. I will practice deep breathing. I will notice when my mind goes into its faced paced – mental spin cycle. I will pay attention to what I’m paying attention to – and ask myself, “Are you expending your energy or protecting it?” I will connect my humanness with my divine brilliance. I will stay in the moment.

I read this manifesto out loud to myself – while I was in Arizona. I read it while I was on the plane returning to Colorado.

When I arrived home, late on Sunday, here’s what greeted me:

  • Calm energy and warm hugs
  • Hubby suggested I take Monday off to regroup
  • Mother-in-law providing eucalyptus for a relaxing steam shower
  • Relaxed and happy children with all their “school stuff” ready to go for Monday
  • Space provided for me, by my multigenerational family, to do whatever I needed to do – at my own space
  • No one asked me to do anything
  • Love

If you find yourself wanting to shift energy or recalibrate – I encourage you to write a manifesto. You can even record it on your mobile phone – if you aren’t able to write it down.

The manifesto can be simple and as long (or short) as you need it to be. Focus on what you need, when you write your manifesto. Be clear and specific. Tap into your core values.  Use simple language and select powerful or vivid words.

I’d love to read what you write for yourself – so please leave your manifesto in the comments section.


Communication + Humor = Awareness for the future

When you live in a multigenerational household, having a good sense of humor is a must! I think effective communication is equally important as the humor.

So yes, I did put that important note on our refrigerator, on Hello Kitty paper no less.

Because I spend so much time in my work life listening, organizing, directing, creating, and counseling – those skills have a way of creeping into my family life. I can honestly say I have good communication skills (and this is feedback I’ve received), but I still have a long way to go; I can do better.

When our multigenerational family is well functioning, everyone is contributing, we all feel honored, and our communication and humor are in perfect balance. We grow and thrive, which makes love flow easily.

When we hit our patches of dysfunction, humor is low, communication is disjointed, and we are all struggle to piece things back together. This is the time when one of us (including the three-year-old) calls our attention to our less than happy state. The “calling out” usually happens at the dinner table.

As I look ahead to 2011, I’m reflecting on 2010 with an honest lens. I’m looking at ways I can be more aware, present, mindful and nurturing of how I fit into our multigenerational family. I’m not setting any resolutions on how to be better at this, but I am taking *Sarah Susanka’s lead by going through a year-end review.

Susanka describes the year-end review as, “…an annual tune-up, when we bring awareness to our lives.  The key is to make this an enjoyable process during witch the faucet can flow…”

-Whole Living, December 2010

I will invite my family members to conduct their own year-end review based on a structure that works for them and honors the ways they communicate with themselves.

In the next few days, I plan to make a journal for everyone (repurposing project for my 2010 calendar), and provide Susanka’s guiding questions as prompts.

Happy New Year!

*My mother-in-law turned me on to Susanka’s book, The Not So Big Life: Making Room for What Really Matters, about a year ago.


Mindfulness + Crafting = joyous holiday season and new Advent calendars

I love this time of year, the crisp cool air, holiday music, festive events with family and friends, and taking time to honor traditions – or create new ones.

A good friend and I took some time today, after work, to go for “holiday kick-off” pedicures. We talked about being mindful during this holiday season and spending time doing joyous things – things that are meaningful, simple, and creative.

The theme of being joyous is also something my multigenerational family has taken up. We decided early in 2010 that we would focus on “gifts from the heart” for December – gifts that showed our love, appreciation, and gratefulness for the receiver.

I set the goal, for myself, to try and make many of my gifts this season. This meant I had to start my projects early so I could stay relaxed during the creation process and potentially finish on time (the “on time” part was not a big priority, but I love a good challenge).  I also wanted to force myself to slow down and not get frantic during the holiday season (so far so good).

My mother-in-law has been very supportive in helping me improve my sewing skills. I appreciate her patience because I often go in spurts when tackling real sewing projects. (I plan to dedicate a big chunk of 2011 to learning how to sew for real. Stay tuned…)

The first project my mother-in-law helped me plan was Advent (count-down) calendars for my kids. We have an Advent calendar that was purchased for my daughter when she was born (1999). When her brother arrived (2007), she had to share her Advent calendar and really wasn’t consulted about this. So, now was the time to let the kids have their own, and I thought this project would be fun and not send me over the edge.  I was also inspired by the Advent calendars I saw in Pottery Barn’s catalog.

Hubby and I had a mini-date at the fabric store shopping for supplies (we also stopped for a quick happy hour). I enjoyed talking with the other shoppers about their project plans as we waited in line to have our fabric cut. The sweet thing was many patrons were a mother-daughter pair or a mother-daughter-granddaughter trio.

My mother-in-law helped me map out the dimensions for the Advent calendars, gave me tips on measuring the fabric strips, made recommendations on the best ways to construct pockets, and she let hubby and me use her sewing machine (our machine needs some maintenance).

I’m happy to report, hubby and I finished the calendars before December 1 and we were excited to hang them on our children’s bedroom doors. We can’t wait for them to see their calendars on December 1. I anticipate some joyous reactions.