I love to sing. I’m not very good, but I do it anyway.

I have a “belting” playlist and periodically sing my guts out for an audience of none;  I keep my earphones on so I can’t even hear my own off-pitch rendition. Sometimes I’ll be walking down the street or sitting on a bench somewhere and sing slightly out loud, much to the amusement of passersby. Or I’ll blast music in the car and sing at the top of my lungs, much to the dismay of my tween nephews who were with me during a recent episode.

Singing releases pent-up energy and allows us to express emotions in a way that words without rhythm, harmony and melody simply cannot. The marriage of thoughts with a tune is a powerful, healing one and when done honestly and authentically, it can connect us to our deepest center, the very core of our being.  As one of my favorite vocalists, Jill Scott, says, you can study music theory and employ various techniques, but when you come on stage “you gotta sing with your soul, play with your soul.” Those who do are the performers who move us the most.

Like the Muppets and their friends, it’s generally best to “Sing of good things, not bad/ sing of happy not sad“, but they can allow to us process darker feelings too, so it’s okay to use corresponding songs according to the situation…just remember the purpose is to release and heal, not get to stuck and wallow.

You never need a reason to sing, but what better excuse to get your grove on than the holidays?  There is no other time of year when it’s more common and acceptable to round up some folks and do some caroling or sit around the dining room table and sing a few festive tunes.  Of course there’s always karaoke, your own bedroom mirror and plenty of choirs and live acts should you need some extra inspiration.

Need a little push to exercise those vocal chords and activate your own personal Glee?  Give me a buzz; we’ll start at the very beginning of your Do Re Mi‘s and find the song that helps you Dream On so you can fa la la la la throughout this holiday season and beyond!

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on December 6, 2011)

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Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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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!

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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 ten 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 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. 

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I always like to remind folks who attend my talks that we are living in extraordinary times. Now more than ever we need to listen to our hearts and march to the beat of our own drum. Yet we are not solo performers on this stage – but more like duets, with the Universe as our partner – in what I like to think of life as the dance of life. There is ebb and flow, push and pull, reap and sow.

In our technologically advanced, left-brain evolved world, we think we can do more and know all the answers in making things happen for ourselves. But the truth is that we are only half the equation: the Universe, with its great unknown and unseen power, process and nature, is the other half.

There is a sublime order to things in our world if we only allow ourselves to honor it, regardless of how long our journey takes or what form or shape the fruit of it bears – and the Universe always knows better than our little pea brains. There is a method to its seeming madness and oft-lengthy timeline, but the more we resist its infinite wisdom, the more we suffer, the more mess is made, the more there is to clean up, and the longer it can take to get back on track.

Instead, we must learn to go with the flow – not in a loosey-goosey kind of way, but with faith and confidence, like a farmer planting his seeds, in knowing that the sun will rise tomorrow and that what comes up must come down.

Any artist, dancer, musician or athlete understands that practice and technique will only get you so far; at some point you have to let go and allow the Universe do its thing. In other words, no matter what you are working toward – getting a new job, growing a business, reaching health goals, or improving relationships – you need to simply “do your best and surrender the rest.”

If you haven’t seen the external results you desire, take a moment to slow down and reflect. If you’ve been paying attention, you’ll notice you’ve been undergoing some major inner reconstructing and re-arranging of molecules, experiencing a deep emotional and mental detox encouraging you to let go of the past in order to move forward; this too is part of the dance. Sound familiar? If not, and you’ve been feeling blocked at every turn, ignoring the call to do this type of internal work is probably to blame, and is easy to correct.

The beauty of dancing with the big U is that that once you get in sync with it, things actually get in sync with you, and stuff starts to happen, as I always say, “in time and on time” – and often more miraculously than you could have ever imagined.

Not sure of what steps to take next or feeling like you wanna rock right now?  It Takes Two to make a thing go right, so give me a buzz and I’ll help you to make it outta sight!

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on November 12, 2013)

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Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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

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 ten 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 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. 

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

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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

I recently attended the funeral of a good friend’s father.  He was Ukrainian, along with most of his relatives and friends, so everything was conducted in his native language.  At the brunch after the burial, a woman stood up and read with great emotion what she had written on a few sheets of loose-leaf paper while many of us choked up.

I saw her by the ladies’ room soon after and mentioned how beautiful her speech was. In broken English, she went on about how she messed up and it didn’t come out the way she wanted, etc. I stopped her mid-sentence and said, “I don’t speak a word of Ukrainian.”  Puzzled, she replied, “Well, I just spoke from my heart.”  And I said, “Yes, that’s why it was so beautiful. ”

I often begin my seminars reminding the attendees that someday, hopefully in the very distant future, they will die.  Perhaps it’s morbid, but like change and taxes, death is one of the few certainties in life. When you look at your existence through that lens, before a crisis forces you to do so, it can be extremely powerful in helping to organize your thoughts and actions in a way nothing else can.

When we can accept it, our own mortality, or that of those closest to us, really puts things in perspective: What is it that we value? What and whom do we hold dear? What is real and meaningful for us?  And when you look back on your life, how do you want to have used your time and energy while you were here?  What is the mark that you want to leave on the world? How do you want people to remember you when you are gone?

Death and dying remind us that when all the external stuff falls away, what’s left?  You can’t take that designer bag, fancy car or impressive job title. It cuts to the core and brings us to the one essential thing that every human being desires – to love and to be loved in return.

At the end of the day, all you have is the impact of the life you led, mostly found in close connections with others and memories you’ve shared. You may never know the effect you’ve had on strangers, and family dynamics can of course be complicated, but remember, you choose your friends, and true friends who have been a part of your journey are precious; they are there regardless of too much time having passed or petty misunderstandings.

A crisis will always give us clarity as to what’s important and what we can offer one another.  If you let them, all that comes to the surface are love and compassion.  And to be there for someone, to have the opportunity to be a healing presence in whatever form that may take, is a gift for both the giver and receiver.

As we start to wind down and reflect on this past year, think about which parts of you can bite the dust, allowing for a rebirth accompanied by a deeper commitment to honor and cherish your relationship with yourself and the healthy ones you have with others, to cultivate new connections that will enrich your journey, and to reaffirm your relationship to life itself.

Not sure what you would want to hear when you go or simply want to develop more fully all that you can’t leave behind?  Give me a buzz and I’ll help you Walk On, and be able to feel good about it all, here and now.

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on April 4, 2012)

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Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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

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 ten 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

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

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. 

Read over fifty 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

I always have a hard time explaining to folks what I do, even as I enter my [11th!] year of coaching professionally.

Over time I have come up with some language that helps, but last year I happened to catch the end of one of those PBS specials where the speaker, Lissa Rankin, author of Mind Over Medicine, was talking about how a doctor’s communication is critical to the healing of the patient. In fact, the physician can have a placebo effect, and therefore become the medicine itself. That sparked an a-ha moment for me – I realized that I’m not a doctor, but through my writing, speaking and especially coaching, I am medicine, and strong medicine at that!

I like to call myself a “holistic career coach” or “life chiropractor” because an individual’s work is my entree into looking at their entire life. This is because our jobs/careers are generally where we spend the most time and energy, so if that’s “off” many other things like health and relationships will be “off” as well, and vice versa. When I meet with clients, I get in there with my x-ray vision and supersonic hearing and connect the dots, see what is out of wack and give you an adjustment along with tools and resources to put you back in alignment.

“Treatment” could take the form of specific tasks and homework, my prescriptions so to speak, but sometimes it is simply me seeing you in a way that you’ve never looked at yourself before, which gives you new insights about who you are, where you should be going and how best to be using your time and energy. Most folks come away with a different perspective that is profoundly healing and motivates them to move forward in a positive direction, however long a process that might take.  Everyone is re-awakened to the person they know themselves to be.

In other words, you get a good dose of special sauce to do the things you need to do that will create purpose, meaning and balance in every area of your life!  Often this is a one-time injection and you’re re-calibrated and on your way; other folks are in the midst of a deeper transformation and need more guidance over a period of time.  Although there are most certainly phases when we all need outside expertise and support, it is always my goal to empower you to ultimately become your own coach and trusted counsel.

We are humans, and we bring our whole human selves with our entire characteristics, experiences, limitations, talents, stresses and passions to wherever we are, whatever we are doing and whomever we are with. This resonates now more than ever with our 24/7 accessibility, increasingly virtual workplaces and the overall blurring of lines between our personal and professional lives, so we need to learn how to manage, balance and integrate it all!

I’m here to help. Yes, I’m strong medicine, but I always deliver with a spoonful of sugar, so don’t be afraid to contact me whenever you’re ready for a little remedy to what ails you.  And, this week I’m sweetening things up even more with this special one-hour session offer so be sure to click here to check it out!

Whether we work together directly or not, I’m so very glad you’re here and hope you enjoy my regular PGG essays which will be back next week.  

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on January 8, 2016)

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Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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

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 ten 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

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

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. 

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

Join Mailing List

 Like us on Facebook    Follow us on Twitter   View our profile on LinkedIn  View on Instagram                 

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

When author and self-help/relationship guru Iyanla Vanzant was asked what her prayer is, she answered that she had three. The first one is “Help!” The second is “Help Now!” And the third is: “Thank you.”

Especially during stressful times, it’s good to keep that superpower (as I described it to my ninth-graders in Life Class) in your back pocket to use throughout the day and cultivate and attitude of gratitude as part of your overall MO.  Many studies and notable folks have promoted the benefits and magic that the energy of gratitude unleashes; whether writing a daily list, speaking it to others in your life, or silently acknowledging everything you are thankful for as they arise in and around you, gratitude opens your heart and is the best way to celebrate your life, stay grounded and reduce your stress no matter what.

Yes, we all know that Oprah keeps a gratitude journal, but even tough guy media mogul and bison king Ted Turner, in some of his darkest hours in the midst of a huge corporate mess and painful divorce, said that’s what kept him going. Every night before he went to sleep he would think about everything in life he was grateful for, and that helped get him through to another day.

Of course it’s easy to be grateful when things are going your way, got lucky or you prayers were answered, but what about in the midst of a difficult situation or for the things we take for granted and hardly even notice anymore? It’s not always easy when you’re in the moment, but just try breaking out some appreciation when dealing with serious challenges and/or their aftermath (i.e. taking care of a sick/aging parent, being laid off from your job, breaking up with a longtime partner, facing a debilitating illness or physical disaster), and focus on whatever good the situation is allowing you to experience right then and there. Remember to think about other hard times you’ve gone through in the past – in hindsight you were always glad they happened, right?

There are so many ways and moments that we can use gratitude, not the least of which is in our everyday interactions – whether with friends, family, foe or stranger, the common courtesies of “please” and “thank you” go a long way and are indeed deposits in the gratitude account. And the little things and everyday surroundings we take for granted are not to be overlooked; this truly is the stuff of life: “Thank you for the roof over my head, my functioning brain, my ability to dance and listen to music, all the work I’ve done on myself to get to this point. The fresh air, sunshine and easy access to the ocean as well as to the mountains; the rain that makes the leaves green and the air that those leaves create so I can breathe; for the good friends and people who support me and make me laugh…” you get the idea.

It’s even become automatic now that when I sit down to eat a meal, I briefly pause to silently give thanks for the fact that I have food before me and appreciate the nourishment it provides, the miracle of Nature, the variety of options available to me; for all the hard work it took to get it here; the people at the farmer’s market and grocery store; the fact that I had the money buy it and my ability to cook, see, smell, taste and digest it; for the pleasure it gives me. It takes only a few seconds to encompass that recognition and all of those thoughts into one acknowledging feeling, because when you really think about it, it truly is a blessing. (P.S. I LOVE food.)

And, as a professional coach, I am beyond grateful to all my clients, who trust me with your time, energy, journey and dollars, and allow me the opportunity to do something I truly love that helps you grow and heal your lives, which in turn has helped me to grow and heal mine.  And for my PGG readers who allow me to express myself in a creative way that you find beneficial and entertaining:  Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

It’s true that ” What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” so if you can’t quite see the silver lining in the clouds around you, give me a buzz and I’ll help you taste the rainbow of your life.

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on July 8, 2014)

Wishing you and your family peace and abundance this Thanksgiving and beyond!
thanksgiving card

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Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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

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 ten 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

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

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. 

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

Join Mailing List

 Like us on Facebook    Follow us on Twitter   View our profile on LinkedIn  View on Instagram                 

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

When I was in sixth grade, my elementary school presented the Norma Gold Human Relations Award to three students from our class of about 100. To my shock my name was called, and to this day it’s one of my proudest achievements — mostly because I had absolutely no idea the award existed or that I had done anything special that warranted attention. I was just very involved and gave my all to whatever I did; at that young age I unconsciously expressed the best version of who I was and got recognized for it.

I am not a competitive person and although athletic, I never wanted to play school sports for that very reason. But sometimes we need to have that extra bit of eyes-on-the-prize attitude to take us to the next level. In the movie Remember the Titans, a racially integrated football team came together to be undefeated champ of its division, a victory that was symbolic of so much more in a newly desegregated South. Prior to the final game, Denzel Washington, playing Coach Boone, declared, “I’m a winner. I’m going to win.”

Every field has its pinnacle of achievement and earned recognition, so why not set your sights on one? In the midst of this season with the Grammys and Academy Awards on their way, it’s a good time to consider: What is the equivalent of a Superbowl, World Cup, Olympic medal, Emmy or Tony in your life? What’s your version of the Nobel or Pulitzer Prize? What would your criteria be and what would you call it?

Define in every area of life what your standard of excellence is that makes you a champion. Set that goal for yourself this year or for your bucket list — even if you never attain it, raising the bar for yourself can only make you better in every way.

The next step is to believe that you are worthy of the accomplishment. When Tango Diva held a contest for their 2007 Diva Visionary Award, at the last minute I decided to nominate myself. I then found out after the fact that -gulp – I would have to ask people to vote for me in addition to being judged. The whole process made me incredibly uncomfortable, but I realized at some point I had to decide that I wanted to win — and that decision took but a minute. I figured I deserved it as much as anyone else and had to just go for it. And lo and behold, I WON!

Sometimes you have to seek the recognition (remember producers run Oscar campaigns), make the commitment to it and push until you win, and sometimes it’s a surprise that just falls in your lap. Regardless of how the victory comes, it won’t occur without the intention of doing and being your best. And as you prove yourself and are honored along the way, remember that once you win it, you must own it.

Don’t think you have any horn to toot or mirror ball trophy to win? Everyone excels in some area, so give me a buzz and I’ll help promote your hidden superstar and find an arena for your unique MVP to shine!

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on February 8, 2011)

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Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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

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 ten 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

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

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. 

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

Join Mailing List

 Like us on Facebook    Follow us on Twitter   View our profile on LinkedIn  View on Instagram                 

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

There’s a saying that warns about not seeing the forest for the trees, a metaphor for when one is too mired down in details to recognize the big picture of whatever a particular situation encompasses, or your life in general.

These days, it is easier to get lost in the trees in the most unconscious ways. Now more than ever we are sucked into dealing with all the daily minutiae of responding to emails and texts, updating and reading tweets and Facebook posts, paying bills, cleaning out/up our homes/offices etc.  – all of which are, to a certain extent, are necessary and make us feel productive, but they are not moving us forward or getting us closer to our goals.

Fairy tales often center on the woods and the mysteries they appear to contain or reveal. Be sure to make regular visits – not just once upon a time – to a forest near you (and bring your journal!) to experience its magic and wisdom. But keep in mind that in those fairy tales, the “enchantments” that accompany the journeys always point to the fact that the answers, tools and courage our heroes seek already exist inside them, and as a result transformation occurs.

So the irony of that famous saying then is that being literally surrounded by trees is one of the best places you can be in order to see the forest!

But if you can’t make it upstate or to the woodsiest part of Central Park for a few hours, give me a buzz and I can be like one of those Ents from Lord of the Rings that shepherds you with a bird’s eye view to help you live happily ever after all the way through!

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on July 13, 2010)

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Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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

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 ten 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

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

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. 

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

Join Mailing List

 Like us on Facebook    Follow us on Twitter   View our profile on LinkedIn  View on Instagram                 

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

The opposite of collective joy and collective pain is dehumanization, and we are in a time of rampant dehumanization.~ Brené Brown

… [T]he truly free individual is free only to the extent of his own self-mastery. While those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern over them.~ Steven Pressfield, The War of Art

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle. ~ Sun Tzu, The Art of War

A couple of weeks ago I realized that my phone was not lasting very long once charged, and instead of having to get a new one, I found out I could bring it in for a battery replacement, as it was indeed dying. It became more involved than just dropping the device off at the Genius Bar for an hour – I ended up having to go back three days in a row to have it resolved – but the two hours straight without it was unnerving to say the least: It was as if my link to being alive was cut off, and this was incredibly disturbing to me. Of course, I now have a new battery and my phone is refreshed and ready to text, email, photograph, talk, and mostly take on whatever Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook want me to pay attention to … #notaddicted?!

Prior to this tech episode, I had been through a pretty long stretch of very little interaction with folks who know me well. Of course there are clients and daily neighborhood exchanges (although my banker, whom I’ve hugged every time I go into my branch, just left!). These can be helpful points of human connection in their own ways, but connecting with a good friend or family member brings a different kind of nourishment that is generally much more nutritious and satiating

When I get into these cycles and start to feel relationally malnourished, one friend and I have a code word for saying “I know you’re busy and don’t have time for a long conversation or catch-up, but I really need to at least hear your voice and connect for a few minutes.” (Relationally malnourished, by the way, is a perfect metaphor I just came up with since loneliness is a condition as primal as thirst or hunger, and is now just as dangerous a health threat as smoking or alcohol, if not more.) That code word is “charge” – as in the bars in my soul are running low and I need to plug into another familiar human in order to get that percentage out of the red. I will text her and ask when she might be free because “I just need a charge.” It could be a 5-, 10-, 15-minute call to vent, discuss a particular issue, or anything, really, simply knowing we are linking up through our direct energy. It’s like taking a power nap – and then I can go back to my life feeling refreshed until a more luxurious, deeper sleep. It really helps.

I also have a deal with one of my brothers who doesn’t live in the city but works within walking distance of my apartment. He is extremely busy with his job and family, and he travels often, but he is one of my favorite people to hug, due to both his big size and big heart, and is the balm that I need from time to time to feel connected and loved. So sometimes I make a date to meet him outside his office or before he gets on the train for 10-20 minutes for the explicit purpose of getting a charge in the form of a big fat hug! #grateful

Just like monitoring your intake of food, drink and oxygen, connection is essential to human survival. We are an inherently social species and are becoming endangered in more ways than one because of this increasing perversion to our core DNA. And the condition of loneliness – which is a lack of consistent, meaningful connection, and a transient or temporary condition whose causes and effects I believe are more situational and physiological than mental – is becoming an epidemic; so much so that the UK appointed a Minister of Loneliness to study its pervasiveness and address it as a serious public health issue.

It’s the great irony of technology that so many people are feeling alone and isolated, because we have the appearance of being, and indeed are, more connected than ever, but generally only superficially. As with anything else, the internet and its accoutrements are a tool that can either enhance or hinder our lives, but the current reality is that many people are falsely assuming their “social” media consumption is like eating a home-cooked or delicious farm-to-table meal, when it’s really more like several stops a day at Mickey D’s. And just like our bodies would suffer on a diet made up mostly of Big Macs and fries, so goes our emotional selves and psyches that are chronically ill from these often crappy and distorted fumes of discourse and sharing that masquerade as genuinely satisfying relationships and interactions.

One way we can prove we are biologically wired to need human connection for our existence is by studying orphanages where children’s basic survival needs like food and shelter are met, but who are devoid of emotional attention, touch and interaction, and they become sick, autistic or even or die as a result. As adults in the modern world, we have to be more cognizant of and vigilant about this, as we can generally feed and clothe ourselves, and hence feel “fine,” but when we’re not connecting with other humans outside of the online world on a regular basis, we can find ourselves consciously or unconsciously depressed, anxious or sick at the least, and suicidal, brainwashed or radicalized at the worst.

We can see how this is profoundly affecting the fabric of society and creating even more “lone wolves” and people getting their sense of identity and belonging from an online tribe, especially if compounded by mental health or socio-economic conditions. It’s basically a tinder box for anyone on the outside who wants to manipulate us, and can foster extreme and irrational acts of violence and hatred.

Brené Brown, in this powerful guest sermon, talks about how we are living in a time in which “we have sorted ourselves by ideology into bunkers … and factions,” yet “the more sorted we become, the lonelier we are.” As it turns out, she says, “Behind the barricades of belief is not real connection – I think we just hate the same people.”

My life’s work, whether through The Women’s Mosaic or my coaching, writing and speaking, has been about helping people know, understand and connect to themselves and each other in order to create both inner and outer peace. There is no more urgent time for you to do the work to know yourself –  who you are and what you’re supposed to be doing, as well as what you need to care for yourself, and take action or seek help when you need it. To acquire this self-knowledge requires introspection, which actually requires time ALONE; you just need to be mindful about using the alone time you have in a healthy way; to check in with yourself – your own thoughts and feelings – and separate them from what you’re shown or being told about how to think and feel, whether overtly or subliminally. This solitary activity is essential so we can come back to others and socialize in a meaningful way, and also be aware when we’ve crossed into the realm of loneliness.

Also, if you haven’t taken that time to build a firm foundation of knowing and checking in with yourself, the extremes of the religious and political spectrums, or even the cultural mainstream through Hollywood and advertising, would rather spoon-feed you with their agendas than have you think for yourself or question them – and you don’t want to be fertile breeding ground for anyone to grab hold of your mind or money. Besides, you gain a certain sense of dignity, self-sufficiency and confidence by doing your own observation and analysis, integrating what you know to be true for you rather than buying into someone else’s perceptions of what is right or wrong or makes someone dangerous, successful or powerful.

Only when you are solidly connected to yourself can you truly connect with another, and this is what the world needs now more than ever. Not quite sure how to charge your battery in order to cut through the BS and better bond with yourself and your buds? Give me a buzz and I’ll help you plug into the genuine juice that will make you both eclectic and electric, so instead of enabling the enemy, you’ll be able to excel in every way!

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Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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

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 ten 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 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. 

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

Join Mailing List

 Like us on Facebook    Follow us on Twitter   View our profile on LinkedIn  View on Instagram                 

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

Throughout the Halloween season we are bombarded with spooky images and haunted houses to remind us it’s that time of year to face our deepest fears . But the majority of things that frightens us isn’t conjured from external forces. Like the creepiness that comes from being in a house of mirrors, what usually freaks people out the most is seeing themselves multiplied a hundred times!

When in your own personal house of horrors, no matter how many cobwebs and shadows you find, know that we all have darker aspects of our personality, and we’re never confronted with anything we can’t handle, so we should never be afraid. Whether your fears and ugly parts are real or imagined, the key is not to run from them. The only thing to do is to shed light on the source of our anxieties and perceived inadequacies, get to their roots and make adjustments that will bring us closer to the most fulfilled and peaceful versions of ourselves.

And like the end of a scary movie, it comes down to you and only you to fight for your life. There is no magic formula or genie in a bottle, no Calgon or knight in shining armor to take you away. Taking responsibility for your life centers you in who you are and what you want – fantasy and illusion, or simply ignoring things, move you farther away. It’s up to you to create your own happiness and what you want in your life, and ask for help along the way.

So if you need to do a little exorcising of your inner ghouls and goblins, who ya gonna call? Like Ghostbusters or those meddling kids in Scooby-Doo, I will expose and expel the real cause of your heebie-jeebies and things that go bump in the night so you can move forward and make the changes you need to be all of who you are in the bright light of day!

(Today’s PGG was originally posted on October 26, 2010)

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Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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

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 ten 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

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

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. 

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

Join Mailing List

 Like us on Facebook    Follow us on Twitter   View our profile on LinkedIn  View on Instagram                 

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

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 posted on May 14, 2014)

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

Click here for some testimonials from past clients 

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

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 ten 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

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

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. 

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

Join Mailing List

 Like us on Facebook    Follow us on Twitter   View our profile on LinkedIn  View on Instagram                 

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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