Archives for the month of: January, 2012

There is a Yiddish saying a good friend used to quote to me often: Mentsch tracht, Gott lacht. Man plans, God laughs.

On my collage from a past Visioning Workshop, the renowned Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh more eloquently elaborates on this as: “People sacrifice the present for the future. But life is possible only in the present.”

Especially 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, 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 before we journey into the unknown – which is why it’s so important to travel, as it is 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 with all the things you think you need to accomplish in the near or not so near future. The reality is that we can’t possibly know what tomorrow will bring so we might as well trust that the right decision or action today will lead you to where you need to go, even if you don’t know where you are ultimately going.

So when life is a big question mark, a blank 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 where you are.  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.

P.S. For more thoughts on this topic check out my post: The Present of Presence

P.P.S  Create your own collage at our next Visioning Workshop on 2/18/12!

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on 9-14-10)

This past weekend I attended a double-feature of documentaries at the Explorer’s Club, and was particularly moved by the film Man on a Mission, which follows the lifelong journey of multi-millionaire video game celebrity/genius Richard Garriott and his dream to become the first second-generation American astronaut.

Now, I’m not a ‘space cadet’ (as I learned such enthusiasts are called) but I did become enraptured by this extraordinary man’s quest, despite several obstacles, millions of dollars, and intense physical and mental training, to manifest his desire to follow in his father’s footsteps. Like any other person with their eye on the prize, he just did whatever he needed to make things happen, and it’s a truly inspiring real-life, albeit super-sized, tale.

But besides making ground-breaking history and removing barriers to space travel, Garriott described his experience as transformational – as many who return from orbit do – because of what is called the overview effectseeing the Earth from outer space and the internal shift and revelations that transpire as a result.

Yet you don’t have to endure zero gravity or eat freeze-dried goop to get a similar perspective if you just take a step back from time to time and simply imagine what your life would look like if observed from the International Space Station, and how it fits into the rest of the Big Blue Marble we inhabit.

If you can’t quite get there on your own, then give me a buzz so I can reflect a little moonlight on you and have our session be the launch pad to a life that any Earthling or extraterrestrial would envy!

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on 6-15-10)

Click here for details on my 2012 Special New Year Coaching Discounts & Offers!

 “Life’s most urgent question is: What are you doing for others?”  Martin Luther King, Jr.

One of the most common desires I hear from clients when embarking on a new career or making a transition is that they want to be doing something with meaning, something that helps people.

My approach is to ask them,  “What is the thing that makes you, you? What you are passionate about; when do you lose track of time?” I inquire as to what their fantasy job would be, and very rarely does that answer have to do with becoming a social worker or joining the Peace Corps.

You don’t have to become the next Mother Teresa, Gandhi or MLK to make a difference and live your life in service to others. Perhaps that may be your path, but as Dr. King also said, “Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve.” Running for public office or volunteering on a regular basis can certainly fill that role, but service can be expressed in a myriad of forms that aren’t always so obvious or grandiose. Just being yourself and doing your best at YOU allows us to benefit from whatever unique gifts and talents you possess. 

When one’s work is done with love and integrity, every job is one of service. MLK day is also about celebrating diversity, which can refer to many things including occupation.  We all have jobs that make the world go round. Whether it’s the super taking care of your building, the bus driver making sure you get to your destination safely, the guy who makes your coffee and bagel every morning, the janitor that cleans the public restrooms you use, the designer of the clothes you are wearing, the comedian that made you laugh last night, the singer whose song you enjoyed on your Ipod, writer whose novel you devoured over the weekend – no occupation is too insignificant, as long as it is done to the best of one’s ability, you can see how any of those people have served you on some level.

And regardless of your job, there is also the service you can provide by smiling at someone when you’re walking down the street, or showing a kindness to a stranger, and notice how for moment you made someone happy or uplifted them in some way.

The thing that I enjoy most and lose track of time doing is talking to folks about their life’s work and helping them make their everyday existence as meaningful and peaceful as possible. I would love the opportunity to help you connect the dots of your life, create more work/life balance and recognize the value in whatever you do,  so just give me a buzz as I am always here, at your service!

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on 1-18-11)

 REMINDER:  Take advantage of the opportunity for group coaching and support THIS WEEK at my Thursdays at Three session on 1/19.  Contact me or click on the above mentioned link for more details!

Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted in something, and that this thing, at whatever cost, must be attained. ~ Marie Curie

Genius is two percent inspiration, ninety-eight percent perspiration.  ~Thomas Alva Edison

Marie Curie spent four grueling years in her laboratory without any guarantees that her work would not be in vain.  As Albert Einstein commented, “The greatest scientific deed of her life – proving the existence of radioactive elements and isolating them – owes its accomplishment not merely to bold intuition but to a devotion and tenacity in execution under the most extreme hardships imaginable, such as the history of experimental science has not often witnessed.”

As a result of her conviction, patience and fortitude along with the support of her husband and partner Pierre Curie, Marie Curie became the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, and only one of two people ever to have been bestowed the honor more than once!

It’s important to note that the word laboratory contains the word “labor” which means ‘to work’.  The word experiment contains within it the same root of the word experience, which is defined as ‘practical contact with and observation of facts or events.’  In this great laboratory called Life we are most alive and creative when stretching ourselves to make discoveries, determinations or testing hypotheses of our own or others’ making.

The only way for evolution and growth to take place is to step out of our comfort zones, find out what works and what doesn’t – whether it be with your health, career, relationships – what sticks and what is more suitable for the literal or metaphoric trash can?  We must have a myriad of experiences – good, bad and everything in between – as they are our best teachers.  As I often tell my clients ‘you need to get your hands dirty’ – get out there, out of your bubble, out of the theory/fantasy in your head and interact with life to see what it has in store for you, how it can mold and shape you, see what you’re made of, what are your likes/dislikes and what new vistas it contains, all of which serve to make you ever stronger and wiser.

This is especially true when at a crossroads, a point of no return; when it seems like you’re at the edge of a cliff and the only option is to jump off to get to your next destination.  As scary as that feels, the fear of moving forward is far better than the dread of staying where you are at or turning back, knowing that failures, both big and small, will always beset you on this new journey in order to learn, just like an infant who at some point has to take those first steps – and fall many many times – before he’s able to confidently walk on his own.  Remember that Thomas Edison never failed; he just found 10,000 ways that didn’t work!

Just as the Founding Fathers called the formation of our nation “greatest social experiment in history”, which continues to have its share of both successes and failures since its birth, this year why not commit to seeing your life, or at least one aspect of it, as your own experiment with new actions based on sound information or solid intuition as knowledge is gained – keeping in mind that some of us are more introverted so we need to explore more outwardly, and those of us who are more extroverted, would experiment with being quiet and exploring our internal worlds.

Need a little help with your own personal or professional life research?  Give me a buzz and I’ll be the scientist that collects, analyzes and assesses the data you’ve accumulated so far, as well as take inventory of your inherent traits in order to discover (or re-discover) that which will bring you the most fulfillment and success in 2012 and beyond!


SPECIAL NOTE: In keeping with the spirit of experimentation, I will be changing up the frequency/format of Personal Growth Gab. I will be offering an original long version message like this one only once or twice a month. Don’t fret! In the interim I will continue to offer a  ‘weekly dose of thought-provoking, inspirational and entertaining helpful tidbits to keep you connected with yourself and make sense of this journey called life’ via repeats of relevant past posts interspersed with other creative pieces.

Feel free to contact me with your feedback and suggestions at any time so I know if you are diggin’ it!

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