Feeling Matters When You Envision

As a woman morphs from one decade to another, her dreams also evolve. Sometimes goals are met and then we move on. Other times we need to just move on.

Creating a vision board helps focus efforts and define goals. With pictures, words, and symbols, one can imagine that which she wishes to experience. Often the process supports attainment. Sometimes the goals remain unreached.

When we let go of a dream, it can leave us feeling empty and lost, you know – ineffective. To get through disappointment or perhaps avoid it altogether, rather than focusing on a particular outcome, hold the “feeling” you’d like to have –that is what you are chasing.

It matters that I feel like I matter–that I make a difference. I’d like to feel a sense of accomplishment, triumph. This can come from work, home, running a race, or a multitude of goals that can be chased in an effort to capture and re-capture the feeling.

Along the journey, let me feel love. Ah, love. It can be found most readily by giving it to your self and to others. And, when someone lovingly touches your heart, be open to it. Love emerges in the appreciation you feel for what you do, who you meet, where you go.

The desire to feel good is a shared urge across the decades. Feelings can help define goals. For help in your future planning, consider signing on for The Desire Map.

While feelings can be fleeting, the goals or mode of achieving feelings are many. Enrich your life by feeling your way through. Follow your heart.

Time Travel

Setting goals can be daunting. Finding direction sometimes leaves me lost. Still, I must look to myself for my answers. And if I find a plan that works, I must share it in the hopes it will help you, too. So, here’s one to ponder.

If you could go through time and ask your self – many years in the future – a question, what would it be? Hmmm, I think mine would be “what should I start doing today to be on the ‘happy dance’ track?” She would know regrets. From her perch, could see opportunities I might overlook. In this interaction, I will see the me I wish to be and she will be my guide to getting there.

I could ask her about my career, my relationships, my spiritual self, my sense of style, even…. So imagine having this conversation. Listen to the advice from the future you – the you you aim to be.

Next, look back to your self, many years ago. Ask her what she needs. Send her some encouragement. Ask her what she thinks (and hear her praise for how well you handled things with the knowledge you had at the time). Find out what she would avoid going forward.

Come back to now. Look yourself in the mirror. Embrace today. It is the only one you have. Tomorrow you will morph one day closer into the you you aim to be.


Death & Taxes

As you step through each day in this experience called life, you will encounter many events. In addition to death and taxes, you will surely endure guilt, fear, and failure during your life. But, the good news is that you will also find adventure, earnings, innocence, audacity, and attainment in the mix. Which is more prevalent? It’s a matter of perspective.

That 90/10 rule is in effect where you are in control of 90% of what happens to you based on how you respond to life and the 10% of it that just happens – you will never be able to affect. Ultimately we all wish to feel good, yeah? What are the specific good feelings you wish to experience? List your yearnings and let those become your guide.

A wish to feel affluent might result in giving money to a homeless woman, or donating time for a cause. The desire to feel attractive might be filled by primping and then greeting others with an authentic smile. A craving for connection might lead you to lunch with new friends. And thankfulness in these moments reinforces the universe to “bring it on.” (Crave a plan, check out The Desire Map for inspiration and a program to help you chart out yours.)

So even if that raise didn’t come through, be thankful that you’re paying taxes (and thus, earning an income). Every morning when you wake, do so with joy that you have time to spend. When you meet with failure, ask “what is my lesson here?” Throw yourself a lifeline. And feel your life unfold just as you need.

A dear woman with whom I worked would respond to “how’s your day?” with “woke up, no box, all good!”

To Boldly Go …

I can be my own best friend or my worst enemy. You know, sometimes my dreams just carry me; other times I get lost in a blur of “what’s going on?” Finding clarity can be tough. Looking for a role model. Someone I can climb up next to and find “my” place.

Imagining life one year from today, I will not be happy if it’s the same as it is right now. I wish to experience adventure and passion, challenge and achievement, the journey and the arrival at the goal. And sometimes the way is not clear.

So, girlfriends, if you’re standing at the peak of a mountain, send encouragement into the wind that it may carry to the heart of your sisters who are making their way along the path. And if you are standing at the base of a goal, take a step in the direction of your dream — if your dream isn’t clear, follow the voice in your heart.

I’ll pause now to meditate upon my breath and to find the path that calls. And I’ll look to you, my sisters, for inspiration.

PS as soon as I find the source for this photo, I shall give credit where due. The topiary women were designed by Topiary Joe of Tellico Plains TN. The giant Topiary Women reportedly stand at the Las Vegas Nove/Playboy Club/ Palms Resort.

Practically Perfect in Every Way

Measure up with a tape, just like Mary Poppins. And adopt her mantra, too!

In my quest for fitness, I took to heart the recommendation to get off the scale. Instead, I am alerted to my results by the way my favorite jeans fit (or getting back in them). Another tool I like is the tape measure. Get the circumference of each bicep (they might vary), your chest just above the breast, your waist at the belly button, your hips across the widest part, and each thigh (they can be different). Then add up the inches. This number is the one to watch.

If you are working to whittle, you might find that you don’t lose weight but you do lose inches. Muscle is more dense than fat so it weighs more and takes up less space. So for the past month, while I didn’t see a drop on the scale, I did find a drop of an inch. My weight shifted from fat to muscle. Theoretically, this will help boost my metabolism, too. I’ll keep you posted.

At the same time, while measuring my flesh and bone, I have embraced the Mary Poppins perspective. Practically perfect in every way, I repeat to myself in the mirror. I thank my body for working with me here. Enough of the judgment. On with getting stronger and healthier. I recommend it – talking to your self with the same encouraging perspective you would share with a friend.

Share your ideas and tips – what works for you?

Apple or Pomegranate?

A question asked often since the long lost days in The Garden. I suggest, neither. Let me attempt an explanation. In the tradition of storytelling and to help explain complex concepts, symbols are used to paint a familiar picture. This way, the idea can be translated by the most people in some way.

We do not harvest a “tree of knowledge” (nor a “money tree” unfortunately) growing in the garden offering orbs of “forbidden fruit.” However, there is the opportunity to experience in a way that gives focus to time and space rather than the ethereal world of All That Is. This focus branches out and takes root, as a tree would. And in this human realm, one is limited to the five senses through which we can get a “taste” for the physical. There is much to explore in this tale and many have found a facet of understanding to share. What is your interpretation?

Still, if one wishes to take it literally, take your pick – apple or pomegranate – but pick wisely (the one you least favor) as it will forever be “the forbidden fruit.” Though I would not want to ban either the apple or the pomegranate as they both offer wonderful nourishment to the body.

Me, Myself, and I Are Having Another Brilliant Day!

We can all use a little boost. This is an exercise I found somewhere and thought I should share before I forget all about it!

I went to the mirror this morning and said to my self “Good morning, girl! What are we going to do today?” My self looks back with a glean in the eye and I know we are best friends off to journey through another time-space adventure.

As I recall, this is an inspiration from Karen Salmansohn who challenges all to “teach your old brain new tricks.” In any case, her stuff is entertaining and enlightening.

Get down with your bad self today! Enjoy.


HALIKILAH (My Palindrome)

Gotta start somewhere. My lasting dreams across the years could be summed up in a palindrome: HALIKILAH which stands for Healthy Athletic Likable Interesting Kind Intelligent Lovable Artistic Happy.

So my renewed commitment to me begins with my body – working on Healthy, Athletic and Happy. I wish to be healthy and to feel strong, energetic and well in my skin (être bien dans ma peau).

After “a certain age” we are often told that changes are inevitable and that we have to accept it. But, as I said before, I could not embrace the bulbous body that was pouring out of my jeans. Jogging my way through the Malibu half-marathon put me on a path of fitness. I am realizing results slowly (especially compared to earlier decades). But, the results are promising.

Searching for role models, I found Earnestine Shepherd who began a body-building program in her mid-50’s (not that I wish to be a body-builder, just that it’s possible). Madonna continues to harden her body (with more resources than I am willing to procure). Jamie Lee Curtis remains healthy and vibrant (and encouraging). I found many inspirations among women 50 and older.

At every age, we can look for role models to drive us. It is easy to spot the current success stories of Jordin Sparks, Jessica Simpson, Amber Riley, Pink, etc. on the cover of celebrity magazines. Let them motivate you to be healthy (and as fit as you desire).

I also look to my friends who are doing incredible things. Liz has taken up boxing and is winning a battle with sleep apnea. Marianne is in her favorite jeans. Paula works it with her hubby. Lauren who is walking the walk. Let me know what moves you!