Archives for the month of: January, 2022

Rules are mostly made to be broken and are too often for the lazy to hide behind. ~Douglas MacArthur

There are no rules here — we’re trying to accomplish something. ~ Thomas Alva Edison

One of my all-time favorite films is Strictly Ballroom for a variety of reasons, one of which is how the main character, a world class ballroom dancer wants to use his own steps in competition and the outrage and, ultimately, delight this causes. I’ve always loved to dance but hated formal exercise. Since I’m not out at the clubs much these days, Zumba and cardio salsa at the gym have filled the gap; but I never was into doing exactly what was presented — I generally stand in the back enjoying the music and sort of go along with the group.

I recently found a new class called Nia, which is perfect for me — it includes sections for “free dance” and encourages you to “dance it your way.” It kind of looks like hippie dancing, or what you might do if you were in your room when no one was watching; it’s a great workout that speaks to my body in a way that makes me feel good.

This time of year especially is filled with many traditions and routines, along with thoughts about the changes we want to make in the New Year. My mom has always made the holidays extra-special with borderline excessive (but not at all tacky) decorations around her home, and this year she just wasn’t feeling it. When I suggested she could put up the tree up with a few accent pieces instead of doing the whole Winter Wonderland/Santa’s Workshop, she thought it was impossible — it had to be all or nothing.

I insisted it could be done and took some of the items she put in the same place every year and used them differently. She fought with me tooth and nail, until I proved they would indeed fit in spots she said they wouldn’t. The house looks festive and the mission was accomplished; it feels like a maximum amount of decor with minimal amount of effort! But it was her resistance to change and incredulity that several options and alternatives existed that were the hardest parts to tackle — she simply couldn’t see any other way than how she’s done it year after year.

Tradition can be a good thing, but it’s important to know when those traditions and routines are serving or restricting us. Sometimes you just gotta break the rules, think out of the box, do it “your way”. Where we would we be without the hundreds and thousands of rule-breakers both known and unknown, in every field — especially the arts, science, fashion and civil rights?

But the truth is that often our most fervent rules and regulations have been totally self-imposed, and/or are no longer necessary. It’s easy to get caught up in doing the same old thing just because that’s the way we’ve always done it. Sometimes we need a fresh eye, another brain, to look at the same situation and come up with a new solution, a new way of doing things that we couldn’t see because you were too close or it was too engrained in our psyche.

Wondering if change will serve you better than reinforcing the “rules” you have in place right now, or which walls need to come Tumblin Down and be replaced with some new Moves Like Jagger? Give me a buzz and I’ll be the law enforcement that looks the other way and the instructor that helps you create the right combination of funky steps you can dance to the beat of your own drum!

Today’s PGG was originally posted on November 29, 2011

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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.

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Hello

I love myself

I love myself

I love myself

We are so happy to be alive

I love my life

Our lives are great

We love ourselves

We love being alive

“I Love My Life” ~ Song & lyrics by my special friend Zachary Miles Lefkowitz, age four and a half, September, 2013

When at a wake recently with my 14-year-old nephew, I recalled to him the time he was about to turn four and I asked if he was excited about his upcoming birthday. He began to cry hysterically saying he didn’t want to have any birthdays. This was because he spent a lot of time around my ailing grandmother who had just passed away in her 80’s and he made the very astute observation that getting older means you are one step closer to dying.

I asked now what it was about death that bothered him most. He did not hesitate for even a second and simply, and very seriously, said “Because you won’t have the exhilarating feeling of being alive.”

I thought this was a profound answer as folks around us were suffering with the loss of our loved one; Jake homed right in on the crux of the matter: We are alive, and we should experience and treasure every moment that aliveness brings us.

Over the weekend I had my first massage in over two years, and it really brought home to me these conversations in the most basic and visceral of ways. Being alive means we are here, in a very physical body in a very physical world. Our body is our vehicle to experience all that life has to offer, so we need to love, appreciate, and take care of it — and, we are also here with other human beings we are meant to love, appreciate, and take care of in a physical way.

Most of us tend to live in our heads and are quite disconnected from our bodies and/or emotions. Getting a massage — whether by a therapist or having a friend or family member give you a little hands-on tender loving care — affirms our beingness, our aliveness, and our connection to and need for one another. Numerous studies have documented the necessity of touch, especially for newborns and the elderly; it is literally what keeps them alive and determines their health and longevity.

Diana Ross famously sang, “Reach out and touch somebody’s hand / Make this world a better place, if you can.” If you’re lucky, you have close relationships where you can exchange physical, affectionate touch on a regular basis. If not, there are lots of alternatives like hugs and various forms of bodywork you can receive from others in appropriate ways and settings.

And sometimes the most special touch can come from a stranger , like from the tourist in Bryant Park over the summer who, while having her photo taken nearby sensed/saw me distraught and crying (even though I thought I was incognito with my sunglasses, hair covering my face and downward glance!), and in one of the most generous, kind moments I have ever experienced, gently put her reassuring, healing hand on my shoulder for a few seconds as she walked by, saying with that one gesture, “I see you, I feel your pain; I don’t know you, speak your language or know why you are upset, but I am here to offer you what comfort I can as a fellow human being.”

So as we go further down this technological highway with its isolating side effects and embark upon the holiday season with the increasing commercial madness it brings, remember the basics: you are here, we are here, let’s love our lives and love one another, and demonstrate that love and compassion in the most tangible and meaningful ways possible.

Not quite sure how? Give me a buzz, because like Robin Thicke reminds us: I got it. You got it. We got the magic touch.

Today’s PGG was originally posted on December 3, 2013

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CLICK HERE FOR FULL PGG ENEWSLETTER WITH INTRODUCTORY NOTE ABOUT CURRENT EVENTS

Get essays like this delivered every Friday to your mailbox as my PGG newsletter by texting CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to join my mailing list.

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

CLICK HERE TO BOOK ME AS A COACH

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

**CLICK HERE FOR MY PODCAST-STYLE INTERVIEW WITH RICK YOUNG OF WHAT’S IN YOUR HAND RADIO SHOW**

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 100 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

Join Mailing List

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Read more about me and my work in these past PGG’s:

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

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 posted on August 23, 2013

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

CLICK HERE FOR FULL PGG ENEWSLETTER WITH INTRODUCTORY NOTE ABOUT CURRENT EVENTS

Get essays like this delivered every Friday to your mailbox as my PGG newsletter by texting CLEARLYKRISTINA to 22828 to join my mailing list.

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

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

CLICK HERE TO BOOK ME AS A COACH

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

**CLICK HERE FOR MY PODCAST-STYLE INTERVIEW WITH RICK YOUNG OF WHAT’S IN YOUR HAND RADIO SHOW**

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

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

Read over 100 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

Join Mailing List

Facebook
Twitter
Instagram
LinkedIn
YouTube

Read more about me and my work in these past PGG’s:

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

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