Start responding to your life instead of projecting it. ~ Caroline Myss

All life is knowing, being, becoming. ~ Alan Watts

Mensch tracht, un Gott lacht (Man plans, and God laughs) ~ Yiddish saying

It’s easy to be consumed with all that’s happening in the world these days, and with social media, it’s ever-present and can feel quite visceral. And unfortunately, the truth is often distorted, hidden or framed in certain ways to evoke certain responses. But we need to be realistic about what we can and can’t control; we need to be knowledgeable and aware but not be drawn into a drama that is not ours or be distracted from our own lives. We must be discern when to take action and when to be an informed observer. I’m not saying this is easy; it takes practice and constant reminders, lest you get sucked in to the vortex!

It has always been my philosophy and mantra that “personal transformation is the key to social transformation.” Because ultimately, if we all focus on ourselves and cleaning up our own environments and spheres of influences, both internal and external, we will actually be doing our part to contribute to the collective versions as well.

When thinking about what I wanted to say as we enter a new year and new decade, I found the above silly Instagram story pic from a couple of months ago, and it seemed like a logical one to use. But the truth is, I don’t really set New Year’s goals or make resolutions. Every year my process is a little different – it’s more like intentions, themes and a general direction to move in with some specifics. But come Dec 31, I always review the previous 12 months to see what transpired. And if I didn’t achieve my “goals,” I can see very clearly what happened – and there is always growth, so I’m OK with that as long as I know I’m doing the best I can and at least progressing on some level, trusting that all is evolving as it should, as I like to say, “in time and on time.” (By the way, it’s not too late for you to do this exercise if you haven’t already!)

With this approach, you don’t have to start the year feeling bad or beating yourself up as long as you’re getting closer to rather than further from your desired aspirations and life trajectory. Some years are built for bigger moves than others – and remember that any change first happens on an internal level – so maybe that’s been the focus for you as it’s been for me. And the fact is that the outer stuff won’t happen if we’re blocked with inner stuff, so it’s just as productive, if not more so, to work on that. It can be less tangible, but no less significant or essential.

Or perhaps your “goals” have changed along the way. Because we may think we know what we want at some point – and may actually get it – but it isn’t always what we expected, or there may be some detours, decluttering, detoxing and/or healing along the way that prevent you from getting over the finish line when a calendar and culture says you should, but instead that sojourn is exactly on track with your own organic process of unfoldment.

In other words, when you’re in tune with your own rhythms and pay attention to what’s happening around you, you can respond minute by minute, hour by hour, and day by day accordingly. That way, you can shape the outcomes in collaboration with something greater than yourself that is moving you along in a direction you might not yet perceive or understand, but is ultimately for your highest good.

This is why it’s so important to be intentional about an overarching goal for your life, which really is just to know and become the best, most expressed version of who you are. And then everything else takes care of itself more effortlessly and clearly from there.

So be compassionate with yourself if your 2019 goals didn’t quite manifest. As long as you were taking action in the direction of your own becoming, trust you are exactly where you need to be and do what you can to continue that journey in 2020, which as we can see, is going to be a wild one.

And as I say in all my talks, you need to strengthen the security within yourself in order to adapt and adjust to the many changes taking place at this point in our history. Being in harmony and at peace with yourself and your own world would be a huge accomplishment to aim for this year and beyond as we make this transformation from microcosm to macrocosm – so remember to exercise those muscles as well as the ones at the gym!

Click here for the PGG with photo

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If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!  

Click here for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

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Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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At the end of December 2009, I felt unusually annoyed with so much chatter about New Year’s resolutions – mostly having to do with diet and exercise – when the timing was just not right for so many reasons. Because of our consumer, materialistic society, especially here in NYC, the majority of folks operate out of harmony with the flow of nature and give in to the pressure and/or blind credence to an arbitrary calendar and overall commercial hoopla to their detriment. For some reason, that year it pushed me over the edge!

Back then I had been coaching professionally for just over two years, which overlapped with running The Women’s Mosaic, so I hadn’t spent much time or effort marketing or creating my own coaching/speaking brand, but it was getting to the point where I should have at least had some sort of newsletter. I basically decided to channel my frustration with the New Year’s shtick by saying, OK I’ll write this down and send it out. And that, my friends, is how PGG was born on January 5, 2010, with the essay New Year’s Message: Don’t Believe the Hype (which you can see didn’t make it on to my website until April 4, when I finally realized I should have one!).

I never thought of myself as writer. I’m somewhat dyslexic, barely read books, have terrible grammar/syntax and a limited vocabulary. (Looking back, I did like essay writing and research papers in school, although those seem very different to me.) But I had something to say. I had a built-in audience from my clients/TWM and needed content. So I wrote. And got some positive feedback from that initial blast.

I kept writing each week. Each one took me a long time – initially I gave myself a limit of 500 words. (Clearly I gave that up after a couple years!) The topic had to be relevant to the season or what was happening in the world. Every essay took me a minimum of 8-12 hours to write and edit, and it could be painful! It became the only thing I did without fail on a weekly basis; it turned into a discipline – something I never had before. And the more I wrote, the more I found my voice, and a certain kind of format. I began to think of them as my art, and I still do.

Then an interesting thing started to happen: People I considered good writers, wordsmiths, bookworms, aficionados and literary-type folks reached out to tell me I was a good writer. This puzzled me greatly because, like I said, to this day – although scratch that, for 2020 I am claiming it! – I had never called or considered myself a writer.

Then, after maybe four or five months of sending out the weekly PGG, I went to an event with over 75 people in the audience. We were instructed to introduce ourselves to the person next to us, and after I said, “Hi, I’m Kristina,” the woman I met responded, “Leonardi?” Shocked and bewildered since she did not look familiar at all, I said, “Yes?” and she said, “I get your emails. They really help me.”

So, like my public speaking, which I also do because I have something to SAY, not because I’m very good at or comfortable presenting (I’m actually an introvert and more of a behind-the-scenes kinda gal) – even though I feel these are not my core strengths, I kept getting such positive feedback I couldn’t ignore the fact that people were benefiting, so I kept doing it.

After not missing a week for two years, I realized I could repeat PGGs and reduce my original writing to about once a month. (I think I’ve only skipped once or twice due to extenuating circumstances.) After four years I thought, Hey I have enough essays, I should compile them in a book – mostly for myself so I could hold something in my hands to represent all of the time and energy I spent on them! Nearly five years and 131 essays after that fateful January day (since then it’s 10 years and 167!), I published them in a very beautiful, fun and useful book, which you can buy on Amazon or take out from the New York Public Library.

I won’t repeat myself here about my process, which I described in last week’s PGG Year in Review, but know that even if I am not writing an original one, I am very thoughtful and intentional about the PGG that lands in your inbox. I want it to be relevant to the what you may be currently experiencing and provide an aha, hope or hmm, chuckle, useful tip/tool, or perspective that is enjoyable to read and helpful to digest and implement.

The most common feedback I get is a simple reply to the PGG email thanking me because it’s exactly what they needed to hear that day, with a sentiment of “how did you know that’s just what I was gong through??” It’s uncanny. Those responses make me so happy because someone took the time to affirm my intention to be meaningful and inspire:

“I love your messages, Kristina!”
“I love the Friday updates!!”
“Thank you for all your articles.”
“Love this! Grateful for you and your wisdom
.”
“Your writing inspires me to think and write myself. I like seeing how the week’s events get incorporated into your musings…”
“I love your PGG newsletters – one of the only ones I actually read in its entirety. They are excellently written, and spot on.
Thanks for being so inspirational and reflective!”
“It has the perfect pick-me-up stories; they keep me centered or inspired.”

“[love] the uplifting, inspiring messages!”

Over the decade, I’ve also heard how a particular PGG has helped you, how it might have spurred you to take action: Like a client who told me she reached out to an old friend she hadn’t been in touch with after she read People Who Need People; or a client who said Leap of Faith was the affirmation she needed to make a big move. Several people tell me they now hug for Six Seconds. Others say they journal because they read Write or Die. Several African-American women thanked me for my understanding and articulation of a difficult topic in Carte Blanche, long before the term “white privilege” was in the vernacular.

Some of my favorite PGGs are just because I love alliteration and making random connections like: Moonies, Mormons & Muslims; Batteries, Bunkers & Bonding; and Zombies, Xenophobia & Xanax.

Many pay tribute or reference historical figures or recent passings: You Say You Want a Revolution, They Might Be Giants, For Weddings and a Funeral, An Unlikely Trinity, or Shake Your Groove Thing.

Other favorites are the ones that describe how I understand life: The Rhythm of the Saints, It Takes Two to Tango, Tangible Schmangible, or Something’s Gotta Give.

There were also some extremely personal PGGs, like Peace Out, about when my mother passed; or political ones, like Bubble Burst, which so many people said helped them process the 2016 election; or my anger and frustration at current events like Beauty and The Beast; Get Up, Stand Up; Rage Against the Machine; or What Lies Beneath.

Some fan favorites are: Thank the Turkeys, Too! | Smile in Your Liver| Truth No. 2 | Don’t Worry, Be Happy | Election | The Fog of War | Happy | Let Love Rule | And S/he Was | Polar Shift | Labor Pains | The Present of Presence | One Day at a Time | All That You Can’t Leave Behind | Wherever You Go, There You Are.

And last but not least, of course there are the ones that talk about my work as a coach: Fruits of Our Labor | All Roads, Same Place | And Now, A Word from Our Sponsor | Strong Medicine | 10,000 Hours | A Decade of Doing What I Do | Express Yourself

There are so many PGGs to choose from – like 167! – which meant compiling this list was not easy. How do you choose your favorite children? It’s an interesting thing to look at your body of work. Yes, I have a body of work! As I write this, I realize that’s a pretty cool thing to have. Over the past decade, I have gotten a teeny bit faster/better at writing/editing, have gained more confidence about expressing myself in all areas of life, and have excavated a whole part of myself I didn’t know existed.

So THANK YOU, dear readers, for being an integral and essential part of this journey. I wouldn’t be here without your encouragement, and I look forward to having you along with me for the next leg of the adventure!

As always, I welcome any comments and suggestions, and don’t forget to see below for 5 ways to show your support and interest in my work and keep PGG going and growing!

CLICK here for this PGG eNewsletter

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If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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Be a rainbow in somebody else’s cloud. ~ Maya Angelou

Life is, well, LIFE, and it’s getting more extreme and complex as the days go by. Each week my intention is to provide a metaphorical rainbow to your journey through my PGG essays (which now include an introductory note with a complementary Instagram post and YouTube video 😉 )

I take a look at what’s going on in the world, my life, my clients’ lives, or usually a combination of them all, and I think about what theme might offer a little help, hope and/or happy to your day. Perhaps it’s some food for thought or a new perspective as you head into each weekend. Or maybe it’s just knowing that you’re not the only one experiencing and feeling the things that you do at that moment.

And this last week in December is when I do a review of all the new PGGs I wrote over the past year and YIKES, it looks like there were only two?? (However, since last year I do write new content with a specific message in the “Note from Kristina” section above which counts a bit, plus I am working on my second book …. okay I don’t feel so bad now!) Anyways, I can’t believe that we are here.

Regardless of the lack of “new” PGGs in 2019, the fact is that there are folks being added to my list all the time, so the approximately 150 essays in rotation will always be new to many of you, and for those of you who are getting a rerun often didn’t read it the first or second time around, or maybe you did but now is when it really resonates and makes sense for you. It’s pretty cool how that works, and amazing I can republish so many that feel as relevant today as when I first wrote them.

And guess what?? Next week will be PGG’s TEN YEAR ANNIVERSARY! That’s nuts, but true. January 5, 2010 was my first PGG email blast. More on that next week, and I would love for YOU to be a part of the celebration!

Throughout the decade many of you have shared with me that a particular PGG was exactly what you needed to hear, or it inspired you to take action or it helped you feel better somehow. I would love to hear from as many of you as possible so that I can share some PGG stories in my anniversary email next week. Here is the survey link for you to let me know how you have benefited from PGG 🙂

I’ve also included a section below for all the ways you can show your gratitude and support for me and my work; any or all of the suggested items would be much appreciated.

Below are the two original PGGs from 2019, but please know that you can always go to my blog to see the archive from every week/month/year, and there are also several on my Medium page, which are great for sharing 🙂

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

From Tiny to Mighty

I’m always saying “the acorn doesn’t become an oak tree overnight,” but I never really thought about what it takes for that oak tree to continue to grow and withstand the multitude of external forces once it becomes a tree.

Click here to read more

Major League Player

When asked what her secret is, she says it’s not about the number but about how young you are in spirit. And also, a big key is to be interested in others: “In order to be interesting you have to be interested in other people.”

Click here to read more

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Thanks for all your interest throughout the year and don’t forget to see below for 5+ ways to show your support and interest in my work and keep PGG going and growing!

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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Read over fifty 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

Join Mailing List

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In case you haven’t noticed, change is in the air. It has been for a while now, but the pace is accelerating faster than you can say Speedy Gonzales.

Whether we are experiencing change via technology, elections, economic shifts, loss of loved ones, the effects of global warming, natural disasters or, in the most extreme cases, living in the midst of or fleeing war and/or genocide, it’s important to have as much clarity and strength as possible to weather such turmoil, and to have an inner resolve of peace and harmony that can carry us through when all around us has been anything but.

I recently saw the films The Promise and Their Finest, which take place during some the most tumultuous times on our planet, World Wars I and II, respectively. Although they are set in the past and in foreign lands, unfortunately the themes and similarities are all too close for comfort in the current political climate. Watching them only confirmed my sense of urgency about doubling down on living in the present, stopping even more to smell the roses and appreciating all that we have while we have it. Essentially focusing on our positive feelings, which at the core helps to maintain a state of peace in all its relative forms.

This is why practices like mediation, yoga, affirmations and other mindful activities I often prescribe to my clients are so important, now more than ever, not just for wellness, sanity and self-care, but for building up a muscle you don’t even realize exists until you are required to flex it in times of crisis and chaos. This is what will sustain you when the goin’ gets tough.

Another way you can build up that foundation of calm, centeredness and strength is to be continually conscious of the present, and really feel each good, joyous, peaceful moment as you experience it — not just by observing or having a positive attitude, but by integrating and absorbing them into your cellular memory so they can be recalled as needed down the line, and when you might least expect it.

Take advantage of every glorious encounter — even small but meaningful things like soaking in the sun on a warm spring day or having a good laugh with your bestie — by staying awake to your own existence, absorbing its essence and expressing gratitude for it on every level. This creates a storehouse for when the storms and stress arrive — as they inevitably will, such is the cycle of life — but you can then be more fortified and less influenced by the accompanying toxicity and dis-ease when they do.

Become hyper-aware of when you are enjoying moments of pleasure, connection, joy, love, beauty, justice. Although they, like everything in life, are always temporary, when you allow yourself to experience them more viscerally on all levels of mind, body and spirit, you are building up an internal stockpile that will serve you when they are in short supply.

Be sure to rest whenever you have the opportunity, and be disciplined about recognizing, seeking out or making it possible when you don’t.

Embrace and savor fully music, dance, food, conversation; listen deeply to your friends, kids, parents, spouse, partner, neighbor, strangers. Really hear and interact with them with every cell of your being. This is what builds up your reserves for those more isolated or disorienting and dehumanizing times. Remember your humanity.

Clean up and stay clear of any emotional, mental and physical clutter, so when situations and crises arrive, you can be fully present and deal with them by standing in the most enlightened, compassionate version of yourself.

Sink into the present as if the past and future don’t exist, because technically, at this moment they don’t. Learn from and then let go of the past. You cannot change what has already transpired, so no reason to regurgitate and relive it over and over, especially if it was a painful or negative situation — this is where forgiveness comes in!

Get out of your head so you can be open to and grounded in the possibilities at hand. Therein lies our empowerment and salvation: our current thoughts, words and deeds are our building blocks, and the more aligned and aware you can be in your present intentions and interactions, the more fulfilling and peaceful your destiny will be, since you are the one creating it.

By being fully present, we can weave a future to be proud of and comfortable to live in, even in our darker hours. In other words, liberate yourself today by being in the here and now, and you will ensure a better tomorrow, even if it’s only your ability to cope more easily and successfully with whatever that future beholds.

In need of a little Ray of Light to illuminate the positive and keep it from flying by? Give me a buzz and I’ll help you slow things down and focus so you can feel like you just got home to enjoy the universe of goodies contained within it!

(Today’s PGG was originally published on April 20, 2017)

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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Read over fifty 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

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Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace. ~ Jimi Hendrix

If you have been receiving PGGs for a while, worked with me individually or come to one of my group sessions, you know that I talk a lot about love. But the love that I talk about is not some airy-fairy, namby-pamby, hippie-dippy notion one that has been misused, watered-down, misunderstood, or simply lost its meaning with lip service.

Real love is the real deal. As Mahatma Gandhi says “Love is the strongest force the world possesses, and yet it is the humblest imaginable.” Fifty years ago we witnessed an era where our civil rights leaders and all those who were part of that struggle dug deep and called upon this force within themselves to withstand the immense opposition and cruelty they experienced on a daily basis in order to transform society as it existed at the time.

More recently we could not have had a more immediate, direct and tangible example of this phenomenon when one single woman, Antoinette Tuff, used it to save the lives of over 800 people, most of them children, from a lone, heavily loaded mentally ill gunman in Decatur, Georgia. If you do not know the story, or haven’t seen this extraordinary woman talk about what happened, you must learn about her. (Google the numerous stories, or watch one of many interviews and listen to the 911 call)

As humans we are all built from the same stuff. Love doesn’t know race, sexual orientation or religion – if you are human you can love. If you are human you respond to love. As Antoinette and Michael Stipe say, Everybody Hurts sometimes. Everyone needs connection and affection. Compassion and empathy are palpable and are the best antidotes to fear and pain.

If you’ve seen me speak, you know I am always mentioning the fact that the root of the word for courage is Latin for ‘heart’. Which means that true bravery is about connecting to that part of yourself, knowing its innate power, and having faith in a force greater and wiser than yourself (or beyond your ego/brain).

So the next time you find yourself in a challenging situation or being attacked in some form, whether it be mental, emotional, or yes, sometimes even physical, instead of using violence to counteract violence, why not call upon the most powerful weapon at your disposal: L.O.V.E.

Need a little help harnessing the heft of your heart? Give me a buzz and I will show you how to give it a good work-out, because at the end of the day love like is a muscle – the more you use it, the stronger it will become – and who knows what miracles will occur in your life or the lives of others because of it!

(Today’s PGG was originally published on August 23, 2013)

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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Read over fifty 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

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This time of year, with its emphasis on excessive merry-making and gift-giving, combined with cold weather, shorter days, and a challenging economy would cause even the jolliest of Santas to pack his sled and head back to the North Pole to hibernate just like their grizzly neighbors so wisely do.

Our focus is on parties and socializing, yet our natural tendency is to go inward for the winter; we are pulled to do all of these external things in a very short amount of time when we should be winding down and checking in with ourselves and preparing for the New Year. As a result, we find ourselves off balance in a big way. It’s no wonder anxiety and stress levels skyrocket and we just try to do our best not to crack under the pressure of the ho-ho-ho!

So how to make it through the holidaze intact? We need to be extra-mindful, stay centered and connected to ourselves, and not go to extremes or make any major decisions. Have an extra dose of patience with yourself and others; take deep breaths; laugh it off; do lots of yoga, tai-chi and meditation; use Rescue Remedy; have a massage; make soup; get some fresh air; spend quality time with good friends; cuddle with your loved ones; and most of all be kind and gentle to yourself.

Another idea is to give yourself the gift of having a session with someone (like me!) who can offer an unbiased, positive perspective; someone to help put you back on track and in balance wherever you need it. Because being able to identify what’s is going on in your head and ridding whatever is ho-ho-holding you back will enable you to enjoy a truly peaceful and joyous holiday season and beyond!

(Today’s PGG was originally published on December 7, 2010)

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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Read over fifty 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

Join Mailing List

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All I wanted this past birthday was to spend time with my very special friend Angie. She’s the great-aunt (but we just use the very fitting moniker of Great Angie) of one of my oldest and dearest friends, Michele.

Michele and I go way back. We met because our alphabetically assigned lockers were next to each other in middle school, and we’ve been experiencing the ups and downs of this journey called life together ever since, even though our lives have taken very different paths. She is the yang to my yin, the Roy to my Siegfried, and yes those were both costumes we dressed up as for Halloween years back … but I digress.

When I first met Angie about seven years ago at a family member’s wake, we hit it off right away, talking like we’d known each other for years. We “spoke the same language” and just “got” each other. We’ve had several in-person interactions since, and we keep in touch with cards and the occasional phone call.

At one point early on, when I was lamenting about something that I can’t quite recall now, she admonished me not to be worried by much or bothered by most people because I was in the “major leagues.” I just remember it was a big aha lightbulb moment and pivotal perspective for me that also became a special bond between us: We are on the same team.

I never knew my maternal grandfather and could count on two hands the number of times I visited my paternal grandparents. My maternal grandmother was around until I was an adult, but she was not that warm and didn’t share much of herself. (Years later, I realized this was likely because she was chronically depressed…) Both my parents passed young and I barely have any extended family. So Angie certainly fills a void for me in having any elders to relate to and connect with.

But she’s way more than that.

On May 1st (my aforementioned grandmother’s birthday, as fate would have it), Angie will turn 100 years old.

Angie lives by herself and has no real health issues except for recent declining eyesight. Before that, she walked to church every day and taught catechism for decades. She is sharper than most people I know and still has a feisty spirit that I imagine must have been intimidating when she was a younger woman. She’s been through and seen a lot in her near century on this planet. Her brother, whom she worked for and adored, was famous, or should I say, infamous, in his day. On my most recent visit with her last Saturday, the 50th anniversary of JFK’s assassination, she retold us of the time she met the handsome President and how beautiful Jackie was at the inaugural ball!

When asked what her secret is, she says it’s not about the number but about how young you are in spirit. And also, a big key is to be interested in others: “In order to be interesting you have to be interested in other people.” Which totally explains how she is so hip and able to talk not only to me and Michele, but also to Michele’s 13-year-old daughter, Fiona, without skipping a beat!

But to me her greatest “secret” and special sauce is her profound faith; her unrelenting belief in and connection to something bigger than herself, which she calls God, and I call the Universe. To me that is what has given her the fuel and fortitude to be so wise and vital at the 99+ inning of her game. I can only hope to be as amazing and inspiring in the second half of mine.

Looking to improve your game at any level? Gimme a buzz and we’ll get you up to speed and in the right uniform so you can make the most of your times at bat and win the World Series of Life!

(Click here for the original Instagram post to see more pix of Angie, Michele, Fiona and me 😉  Be sure to follow me there for inspirations posts throughout the week!)

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If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

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Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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Whenever the fourth Thursday in November rolls around, we are meant to reflect on all the blessings in our lives. Traditionally, that would imply appreciating all that is good or positive, everything that brings us joy and happiness, or that we could not live without.

While that is certainly warranted, why not also be grateful for the funky, not-so-positive, annoying and pain-in-the-you-know- where stuff — the people, things and situations that challenge us, push our buttons or make us feel uncomfortable.

As the saying goes, “There are no problems, only opportunities.” Our crises and difficulties are chances for us to test our mettle, see what we’re made of, and become stronger and wiser for it. They are occasions for us to make course corrections, adjust, fine-tune and put ourselves back in balance or on track — or perhaps a different, better track.

If life went smoothly all the time, you wouldn’t have to dig deep, really look at ourselves, search within for answers, or find new, creative ways of doing things. Innovation is problem-solving at its most basic level (just watch those Dyson commercials), so where would we be without all the problems we’ve had?

Whether you’re unemployed, having a health crisis, or having trouble in your personal or professional relationships, take a step back and see what is the Universe trying to show/teach you. Remember, those carbon atoms wouldn’t become diamonds without extreme high pressure and heat.

So this year, be thankful not only for the bird that you are about to eat (or Tofurky if that is more your style), but for all those “turkeys” in your life — the folks and circumstances that gave you stress and grief but also compelled you to overcome those obstacles and become the person you are today.

Need a little help seeing how the cr*p in your life is really cool? Give me a buzz and we’ll figure out what should be basted and tasted, and what is simply a little fat that needs to be trimmed….

(Today’s PGG was originally published November 23, 2010)

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If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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If you are like me, my clients, family, friends and the rest of the world, you’ve been through some stuff the past six months (well more like the past two years, oh heck, since the Fall of 2008!) that has tested, stretched, stressed and made you confront some not-so-pleasant realities about yourself, your life and the people in it.

This meant lots of changes, whether forced upon you from the outside – i.e., having no choice but to move; getting laid off from your job; dealing with a divorce, breakup, or loss of a loved one – or internally, i.e., you were so sick of yourself or your situation that you had to do something, not the least of which was to change your perspective, or finally accept the reality of how things are, rather than how you imagined or wished them to be.

The more challenges you have and the more you resist, the worse things get. This has been a time of “go with the flow,” so whatever you’ve been through, know that it is exactly what you needed to make you stronger and get you to where you need to be next.

A lot of my work is about teaching you to trust yourself, have faith in the process and possess the patience to let life unfold as it should – even with those bumps in the road and unexpected twists and turns along the way. As long as you are intimate, honest and honoring with and of yourself while consistently being in action (which is sometimes non-action), whether internal or external, have confidence that things will shake out the way they are supposed to, in time and on time, in whatever form the Universe deems is best for you.

It all starts with knowing and owning who you are, where you’re at, what you truly want, and realizing you have the power to be the fullest, deepest expression of yourself if only you make it your responsibility and yours alone. It means we have to grow up.

One of the tools I gave these ninth-graders – which I referred to it as a superpower- was to be grateful whenever things get a little rough. Like those magic words “Open Sesame!,” by simply focusing on something you can be thankful for, all of a sudden the pressure is lifted and a metaphorical door or window opens to let in a cool breeze, provide an answer to that riddle, or reveal a hidden treasure.

So no matter what you’ve been through recently, make sure you see the gift in the gristle, which is GROWTH. Give it up with a great big letting go of the past, and exhale heartfelt gratitude for whatever life handed to you, having gotten through it, and embrace all the good you’ve gained and have yet to experience as a result.

Need to survey the lay of the land as the dust settles to sort out who’s who and what’s what? Give me a buzz and I’ll help you thank that unexpected messy house guest who disrupted your home, but in the end left it better off than it was when he got there.

(Today’s PGG was originally published May14, 2014)

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If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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Read over fifty 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

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A good friend would often quote a Yiddish sayingto me: Mensch tracht, Gott lacht. Man plans, God laughs.

The renowned Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh offers another perspective: “People sacrifice the present for the future. But life is possible only in the present.”

In this era of instant everything and a world of answers literally at our fingertips, one of the hardest things for us to do is live in that space where we don’t know what will happen next. With the unemployment rate at record highs [2010], more and more people are learning the hard way how to experience life in this manner.

People in career transition, artists and freelancers have to operate without knowing where their next paycheck will be coming from. People in new relationships are at often at sea in uncharted emotional waters. Whenever we put ourselves in unfamiliar social territory or a take a trip to a place we’ve never been, we journey into the unknown — which is why it’s so important to travel; it’s one of the most natural ways to be in the present.

An easy way to add anxiety and stress in your life is to allow yourself to be overwhelmed by all the things you think you need to accomplish in the near or not-so-near future. The reality is that you can’t possibly know what tomorrow will bring, so you may as well trust that the right decision or action today will lead you where you need to go, even if you don’t know where you’re ultimately going.

So when your life is a big question mark or an empty slate, or if you find yourself in terra incognita, I can help you fill in the blanks and navigate your way through, or simply show you how to be okay with where you right now. Give me a buzz and I will be the lighthouse in the fog, the compass in your pocket, to help guide you to your most authentic destination, in time and on time!

(Today’s PGG was originally published September 14, 2010)

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

Click here for a video that explains some ways I can help you as a coach

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter for up to date posts, helpful articles and inspirational thoughts.  Slowly building my YouTube channel so you check that out and subscribe too!

Text CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to be added to my mailing list and be in the loop with my coaching and workshops as well as have these essays delivered to your inbox!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final seven minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.

Click here to watch video

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Read over fifty 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

Join Mailing List

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