Monday, June 30, 2014

It's The Little Things

I really can't complain, but sometimes I still do!

Have you ever noticed that it's the little things that make you crazy?  Dishes in the sink, spills on the counter (and floor for that matter), the TV left at the Guide screen or the remote being hijacked by someone who goes through every station never landing on one. How about someone who interrupts their conversation with you to answer their cell phone, leaving you waiting as they have an entire conversation with the caller while you're left hanging in mid-sentence. Then they return to your conversation as if nothing "Excuse me", no "I'm sorry". These are just some of the things that irritate me.

Add to that list people texting and driving, texting and walking (apparently believing others should move for them), and even worse, texting while talking to you. It's enough to make me scream.

The good thing is we all have a choice about how to respond.  We can carry small irritations with us, or we can choose to take a breath and just let them go, remembering the only person we can control is us.  So the next time something bugs you, think about you react is totally up to you.



Monday, June 23, 2014

The Unholy Trio

This post first appeared in It's All In Your Head on September 16, 2013

As with any good book, I flipped to the last chapter and began reading. The subject was fear, and the "Unholy Trio" comprises indecision, doubt and fear. The book is "Think & Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill, which is one of the best motivational books I've ever read.

The Unholy Trio is alive and active in most of us. Indecision is the first inkling you have that you

Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Computer Gremlin


When you realize the power in your thoughts,
you will become very careful where you let your mind wander.

This post was originally published on June 20, 2013

Our brains are always turned on—even when we’re sleeping. We’re always giving ourselves feedback or self-talk. And that self-talk comes from 2 different voices in our head – our spirit which nurtures us with kind,

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Follow Your Roadmap

(This post first appeared on June 12, 2013)

"What you get by achieving your goals is not as important
                             as what you become by achieving your goals"
                                                                   ~~Henry David Thoreau

I was watching "My Cousin Vinnie", which still cracks me up even after seeing it for the  umpteenth time. One scene that sticks in my mind is when Vinnie's car is stuck in the mud. He tries rocking it and flooring the gas pedal, but it just sinks deeper. It occurred to me that sometimes life is like that...we're spinning our wheels and going nowhere. We work so hard and so long on something and end up feeling frustrated because there is so little to show for our efforts.

If this happens to you, I suggest you think about your know, the roadmap you're following to reach your goal.  What's that you say? You have no plan" You just know what needs to be done? No wonder you're frustrated.  

Without a plan, it's difficult to accomplish anything. Would you dream of going on a trip without using a map or your GPS?  Of course not! Well, your plan is the roadmap to your goal. If you don't know where you're going, any road will do.  But "any road" will probably not take you in the direction of your goal. At best it will lead you through several detours first.

Here are some tips I've found that help me reach my goals:

1. Write your goal down on paper or in your phone. Putting it in visual form works wonders and gets it out of your head.  Use sticky notes, and post it in several places...your home, your car, your desk at the office.   When you can see your goal, you're more apt to work on it.

2. Make sure your goal is SMART -- Specific/Measurable/Achievable/Realistic/Time-bound. For example, "I will lose some weight" is not a good goal because it's not SMART.  However, "I will lost 10 pounds in six months" meets the criteria.  It's specific, can be measured, can be achieved, is realistic and has a "by when" date.

3. There's a saying that you can eat an elephant as long as it's one bite at a time. This applies to goals too. Breaking a goal into small manageable steps make it less overwhelming. Go from A to B...not A to Z.

4. List all the steps needed to reach your goal and give each one a "by when" date. Then check each step off as it's completed. One very important thing to remember here is...don't chastise yourself if you don't complete a step by the assigned date. You're not a're a person who has things going on in your life. When you're driving, the GPS will tell you it's "recalculating" if you miss a turn. It's okay to do your own "recalculating" to get back on track.

5. Find someone you trust who supports you and your plan and will remind you of your goal, especially during those times when you lose sight of it or want to quit.

Following these steps will help you move forward.  Have you used other strategies to help you reach a goal? Please share them in the "comments" section of this blog. I'd love to hear from you.



Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father's Day Challenge

Our relationship was rocky, 

but you did the best you could with what you had to give.

Today is Fathers Day so for all you dads out there – have a great day.

My father died in 1970 just before his 53rd birthday. I hadn’t spoken to him for five years prior to that because I hated him. (Harsh words, but all too true for me at the time) He was an alcoholic who was mean when he was drinking, and I finally decided I’d had enough of the yoyo cycle of anger and forgiveness. So I chose to stay in anger mode until after he died.

I wasn’t sorry he was gone. It just made my life easier because it was one less thing to deal with. But after many years of soul-searching and self-examination, I have come to terms with our relationship. While I know nothing of his childhood, I believe that my grandparents factored heavily into who my father became because they were not warm and loving to any of their children. So I think my father gave my brother and me what he knew how to give – which wasn’t much. I believe he had his own demons chasing him and that he gave us the best he knew how to give.  

I forgave my father years ago because I needed to free myself. You see, forgiveness is always about you and never about the other person. But I often wish he were alive today because I would love to know what went on in his life to make him who he was. Our relationship today would be much different, although I don't know if it would be better.

To those of you who have loving relationships with your father, congratulations. Take this day to honor them. And for any of you whose relationships are built on fear, distrust, and hate, believe that you can work through the bitterness and find peace. Forgiving doesn’t mean condoning what someone has done. Forgiving doesn’t even mean that you have to let the other person know that you forgive them. It means that you push the hatred out of your heart, and you do it for your own inner peace so that you can be a better person.

So today, honor your father. And if your relationship was similar to mine, believe that if he knew better, he would have done better.

~~Weekly Challenge~~
Forgive someone in your life who has caused you pain. If you’re not sure how to start, write them a letter telling them exactly how you feel. Let your heart spill out on to the page.

When you’re done, re-read the letter. If you choose, go ahead and mail it, knowing that you will be opening the door to more pain until all the issues are resolved. If you choose not to mail it, tear it up and throw it away.

Either way, you will have made a start to clear bitterness from your heart.

It IS All In Your Head!


Friday, June 13, 2014

Key to Success

Find joy in all parts of your journey.

I found the following post on my Facebook page this morning.  It's from Author and lecturer, Marianne Williamson, and I liked the brevity and focus of the message:

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Sky's The Limit!

This post first appeared in It's All In Your Head on June 16, 2013

Helen Keller said that "life is either a daring adventure or it is nothing". For your life to have meaning, you must take risks. They allow you to grow and move forward. Life without risk isn’t living at all—it’s just staying in the same place doing the same thing.

I’m no stranger to risk taking. When I was 41, I went back to college to get my degree – I took the risk. I retired early from General Motors – a huge risk for me. And, when I was asked to be the keynote speaker for a conference, I said “Yes”. I said “Yes” before I gave myself the chance to say “No” because I wanted to take the risk. 

What are you afraid of? What opportunities have slipped through your fingers because you couldn’t bring yourself to take the risk to get started? There’s something very comforting in the status quo.

We wrap our lives around us like a blanket that is safe and warm. It becomes our cocoon, and it slowly

Monday, June 9, 2014

5 Simple Rules

Rules are made to be broken...unless you spread lies that can hurt someone.

I often receive emails that have been forwarded many times over.  Their outrageous claims can only serve to upset and inflame me and others who probably forward them on to their mailing lists giving these emails a life of their own. Sometimes I respond to the sender and ask if they checked the "facts" they are sending.  Most often the response is "No".

With that in mind, here are five simple rules to follow before blindly passing on misinformation:

1.  Question everything.  Just because something has been posted on the internet does not make it true.

2.  Think for yourself.  Take a moment to pause and consider the information, especially if it's something to make someone look ridiculous.  Don't believe it just because you want to.

3.  Research the information yourself.  There are internet sites such as that can help you determine if the information has any merit.

4. Follow the evidence wherever it leads.  If you have no evidence, do not pass judgment.

5. could be wrong.



Friday, June 6, 2014

Happiness Void

What is happiness?  Look inside your heart for the answer.

How often have you thought to yourself "I'll be happy when..."  Lasting happiness is an inside job.  All the other things we think will make us happy probably do...temporarily.  The new house, new car, or new job become old rather quickly.  When the thrill wears off, we're right back where we started.

Instead of trying to fill your happiness void with things, practice this technique daily: stop what you're doing

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Lesson of The Tangle

"The tangle is a flashlight that draws our attention to what needs to be sorted and clarified. The tangle is our teacher, our guide and friend."
~Wren Ross (fiber artist who designs and knits gorgeous sweaters, hats, etc.)

I remember the summer my grandmother came to live with us. It was the summer she taught me to knit. As with any new thing, knitting occupied most of my time that summer. Through the heat and humidity, I would sit on the porch and knit – scarves mostly because they were the easiest. Knitting made me feel calm and relaxed – and I was excited when I finished a scarf and was able to give it to some lucky family member.

Every so often, my yarn would tangle, and I would become frustrated. I didn’t have much patience back then, and I suppose I’m not so different today. As I look back now, I realize that the tangles in my yarn were there to teach me a lesson about the tangles in my life – how I get into them and out of them. The tangles weren’t problems; they were opportunities. Why didn’t I take the time to put rubber bands around my yarn and put it in a plastic bag to keep it neat? Probably for the same reason I don’t give myself time for all the different parts of me.

I’m always in a rush. My afternoon walk with the dogs has turned from a few moments of relaxation into a race to see how fast we can walk to the field and home again. I have a list with so many “to do’s” on it that I know I’ll never get to half of them. There’s no time to stop and relax. I only have one life and I’m going to cram in as much as I can. But, this can’t be good if I’m not really experiencing what I’m doing.

If your life is hectic and you’re “doing” but not “experiencing” then take some time to disengage from all those extraneous doings and find a quiet place to just “be”. Use the time as an opportunity to learn more about yourself. What can you learn from the “tangled knot” of your life? How can you use the tangle to your advantage?

~ Weekly Challenge ~

If your life has areas that are like tangled knots, look for the lesson. What caused the tangle? Were you pulled into someone else’s problems? Visualize yourself finding a solution by gently untangling the knot – unraveling the mess one small step at a time.

It IS All In Your Head!


Monday, June 2, 2014

Sticks and Stones

A million times "I'm sorry" can never erase the scars.

I do an exercise in my Assertiveness Class to make an important point...words matter.  I have each student take a blank sheet of paper and write a name on it.  Then they talk to the paper saying things like "You're