Posts Tagged ‘Laughter’

When I Grow Up I Want To Be More Like My Dog

Monday, October 25th, 2010

I’ve decided that my dog knows quite a bit about living life to the fullest. When he’s tired, he simply heads to his favorite spot in the sun and takes a nap. When he wants his belly rubbed he comes and makes it clear just what he wants. When Indy’s hungry there is no doubt that he would like a meal. You know when Indy’s in the mood to play because he simply starts playing. Smart guy!

Because Indy is so clear about what he wants he is seldom disappointed. Indy is a brilliant life coach! He’s teaching me lessons every day and I’m doing my best to learn from him.

When I work with clients, whether life coaching, Reiki or meditation, I am always encouraging them to practice excellent self-care. While I may forget to practice this myself from time to time, my buddy Indy offers gentle reminders. If I’m a bit too serious, he reminds me that life is to be enjoyed by showing my just how much fun there is to be had in a short wrestling match.

One of the life coaching lessons I continually strive to learn better is to embrace and express certain emotions. While laughter and joy are very easy for me to share other thoughts and emotions are more difficult for me to express. Fear, anger and grief are very difficult for me to share with others or to simply release. In the past I have found that I had a tendency to stuff or simply deny these feelings. Here’s the thing, although I may prefer to deny these emotions they do still exist. The body, mind and spirit has a full range of emotions, and whether I like it or not, my body, mind and spirit will find a way to express these emotions. They are not intended to be denied, bottled up or stuffed. They are there for a reason! A full range of emotions keeps us healthy and it’s vital that we each find a non-destructive way to express these emotions.

What do you do? For me, writing is therapeutic; digging in the dirt, walking and of course being with my buddy Indiana is extremely helpful. When Indy’s sad or upset he doesn’t hesitate to come to me and indicate that he simply wants my company. Sometimes it’s enough for him to just hang out with me, other times he needs some real exercise. I have a lot to learn from my dog.

I am learning, though to be honest I am sometimes a slow learner. 🙂 At the very young age of 49, I am slowly becoming more comfortable sharing feelings, thoughts and emotions that I have always accepted in others easily. Life coaching, Reiki and meditation have all helped me to understand that being sad or angry is no more destructive or negative when present in my life than they are in anyone else.

This is a good time to acknowledge and appreciate not just my resident life coach Indy, but also dear friends and family. These folks not only allow, but at times even gently prod me to share as much as I feel comfortable. I’m so grateful for that. Equally as important, they do not demand that I share; they simply hold the safe space and remind me that all emotions, thoughts and feelings are welcome and safe. That’s powerful stuff and I can’t say how grateful I am.

Indy reminds me every single day that it’s okay to have a full range of emotions and to share those emotions with others. You will have absolutely no doubt when my buddy is happy, that nub of a tail wags so hard that I’ve often thought how remarkable it is that it’s still attached.

What do you do to express yourself? Do you dance? Perhaps you retreat to a private place with your thoughts…maybe writing is your thing. There are so many ways to express yourself, talk to a loved one, call a friend, laugh and or cry at a movie. Exercise or take a bath, read a book and let your emotions pour themselves out. I don’t know what’s right for you and you may not know at this moment either. If you can’t figure it out by yourself, give me a call and I’ll be happy to help you figure it out.

I’m going to keep studying and allowing my own personal life coach to assist me in this growth, Indy’s really quite good at this whole process. I encourage you to find discover what allows you to express yourself. In the meantime, I will continue to strive to live life more like my dog. In the moment and expressing all emotions to the fullness that is appropriate this very moment.

Namaste,

Sandy

What did you Expect?

Monday, November 16th, 2009

IMG00061My co-host and wonderful new friend, Melissa Heisler and I welcomed a group of five (5) women for our Relax and Recharge Retreat this past weekend.

We had talked about  our hopes and plans for the retreat and created an outline to guide us as well as letting the participants know what to expect. That plan pretty much flew right out the window, and it was to the benefit of all of us.

Everyone came for their own reason and of course those reasons and personal stories will remain confidential. What I found most interesting though was that all of the participants had desires and intentions in common, even if they were not aware of these desires and intentions went they registered for the event.

The weekend seemed to fly. Bonds were quickly and firmly established. Some ladies slept in, getting some much needed and well earned rest. Others spent those early hours in quiet talk. We walked for miles while we shared precious stories, sometimes all of us together, other times one on one. There was opportunity for Psych-K and Reiki and we all participated in guided meditation, taking our own private journeys in our mind while listening to our souls. We even spent some time creating our own vision boards. And do these ladies have vision! Each vision board was of course very different from the others. Another step toward creating the future that each is bringing about in her own life.

We ate well, nurturing our bodies while we nurtured our souls. It was a weekend of discovery and remembering. Recalling the laughter and pure joy of youth and simple pleasures.  Life coaching went on almost constantly, and some of it was even offered by the coaches; Melissa and me. The support and positive suggestions offered by each of these women to one another was heartwarming and genuine. They were positive, supportive and kind, most of all they were right on point, time and again.  Tears flowed, but there was also laughter. So much joy, I can hear it even now.

Can you bend spoons? Me too!  But Melissa shared this skill in a whole new way. Instead of using force to bend the spoon, she taught how to make the spoon pliable and easy to bend by using your heart and mind. Love that! And yes, it worked.  I was smart enough to buy some extra spoons from the accommodating diner down the road or I suspect I would be looking for new spoons for my lake home even now. They bent easily and it was just so cool to see the looks of amazement and happiness of the faces of the amazing ladies. They were always powerful but now they realized it in a whole new way. Very exciting stuff!

While it was our original plan to include Reiki, Psych-K, meditation, life coaching, etc., we soon realized that the schedule was not important at all. The days and nights unfolded perfectly. It’s pretty tough to ask for more than that.

I’m grateful to each of these women for sharing and participating. I’m also grateful to them for reminding me of a powerful lesson. I had certain expectations and plans when Melissa and I were putting all of this together. And while I still believe it’s important to have expectations and plans, I was gently and wonderfully reminded that it’s very important to let go of expectations when something much better comes along.

I wish you a week where your expectations are not only met but exceeded in surprising and most fabulous ways.

Warmly,

Sandy

A Good Deed

Saturday, November 7th, 2009

DSC01004I’ve posted about this before, but every time I think about it I become very excited, so I thought I’d share with you.

Our mother’s taught us that we should be nice to others because it’s the right thing to do; I tried to teach my kids the very same thing. I remember from time to time one of my boys would ask why they should help out their brother, what was in it for them? Well, I was the grown-up in the house, so in the most gentle, loving manner I could muster I would calmly explain that what was in it for them was the opportunity to sleep inside the house that night and with any luck the next night as well! I tried hard to be a generous and helpful mom.

I wish I had known then what I know now. It turns out that every time we do something kind for someone else, from helping them find their shoes to untying them from the railroad track just before the speeding train arrives, raises our serotonin levels. In short it makes us feel good. Here’s where it gets even better. You would probably expect the formerly tied up on the track person to feel pretty good about the new situation. But guess what, you will too! That’s right not only are you doing just what your mama told you to do (rest assured, Mom’s feeling pretty good at the moment now as well) but your serotonin levels go up just as a result of your doing the right thing. Hot dog, you’ve got to love that. But wait, it gets even better!

This is not just a win/win for both the good deed doer and the good deed recipient, but it turns out that anyone witnessing the event also experiences a rise in serotonin. How cool is that? That explains why I felt so good when I would watch one of my boys help the other to build a snow fort. They thought they were simply doing it to protect their corner of the yard from the opponents on the other side of the yard, and in truth that’s what they were doing. But they undoubtedly felt good as a result of the kindness, their brothers felt good and I now realize that this act in full view of the neighbors probably made them smile and feel just a bit better as well.

Now the life coach in me realizes that even if I didn’t intellectually understand this all those years ago that I probably intuitive understood it and that others probably do as well. But how cool is it that we now actually know intellectually what we felt all along?

I’ve had conversations with other Reiki people about this from another angle. For instance, while I give myself Reiki frequently I most feel the wonderful effects of Reiki when I am offering it to another. That is definite motivation to be sharing Reiki with anyone and everyone who is open to the experience. It just feels good and makes me happy.

What to do with this information? Perhaps just knowing it is enough to make you smile and feel good. You might share the info with others and hopefully motivate them to do an extra  kindness.

In truth I don’t care just what the motivation was that made my little boys help one another out from time to time. They did and clearly they got something from the experience as they are all now adults who don’t hesitate to assist others cheerfully. I feel better just having that knowledge.

I wish you a fabulous week, offering, receiving and observing kindness and good deeds.

Warmly,

Sandy

Apple Mystery

Saturday, October 24th, 2009

I don’t cook or bake very often anymore, my husband John likes to do it and he’s really very good at it as well. Hooray for me!

Today I decided that I should do a bit of baking. It’s a lovely autumn day, the rain has finally stopped, the dog has been walked and John is outside chopping wood for the fireplace. It seems like the only thing left to do is bake, so I decided to make an apple slab cake. Yummy.

I meandered off to the kitchen, found a recipe and started working on the apples. John came into the kitchen and we chatted a bit, disturbing my rhythm a little, but I didn’t get too far off track. After all, this is one of the things I used to be able to make without a recipe, so I went back to work.

As I got a bit farther along, I realized I didn’t have one or 2 key ingredients. So, I looked at 2 or 3 other recipes. John came in offering suggestions and thoughts before I finally chased him away for good. In the end I wound up making something that I’m going to call apple mystery. I have no idea what this is going to taste like, in fact I’m not even sure what it will look like. But I’m a bit excited to find out.

As I was finishing cleaning up the mess I made while making my apple mystery it occurred to me that this is just what my life is like, and I suspect it’s a bit like yours. So the holistic life coach that lives inside of me decided I needed to share this epiphany with you.

We make plans for where we are going or how we are going to spend our life. But stuff happens, we find out that the plans need to be changed or that we may have to operate without a plan at all. Our lives are an apple mystery.

The fun part of this is that we never know just what today or tomorrow are going to look like. We may have a pretty good idea what we expect but if a few ingredients change, it can all change in a moment.

Is there a lesson here? Sure, but I doubt very much that it’s new to either of us. Go ahead, make plans, set goals and live your life. But when changes occur, when your plans are altered without warning, roll with it as much as possible. Enjoy the apple mystery.

Warmly,
Sandy

Smile to Feel Better

Sunday, October 11th, 2009

DSC01050One of my favorite movies is Mary Poppins, I’ve watched it countless times and I always tried to get my kids to watch it with me while they were growing up. Of that entire movie, my favorite scene, hands down is the scene where Uncle Albert is floating around near the ceiling laughing. You see his laughter has literally lifted him up! As the main characters watch him, they begin laughing, it’s so contagious that very soon they are all hanging out near the ceiling, telling awful jokes and having a jolly time. It makes me smile and begin laughing even to think about it. Of course the song they sign is ‘I love to laugh’.

I’ve got to agree! I love to laugh, it make me feel fabulous. Sometimes I swear that my mind is absolutely determined to make me smile no matter where I try to take it. For example, the other day I was participating in a group meditation. The atmosphere was quiet and peaceful. The woman who was leading the meditation had a calm, soothing voice. I was expecting an ‘ohmmmm’ experience. Didn’t happen. Instead I had a really tough time repressing outright laughter. I kept seeing cartoon characters, speeding along, hopping and even poking out from the trees. It was absolutely delightful! I’ve never had so much fun during a meditation, I could hardly wait for the next time.

While it’s true that I smile, giggle, chuckle or even belly laugh when I’m happy, I also try to do one or more of those things when I’m not happy. Invariably it lifts me up, somewhat like Uncle Albert. It seems that I simply cannot stay depressed, angry or horribly sad if I smile just a little bit.

I’m not trying to say that a smile will take me from a wrenching sob to euphoria, but it will help me to feel incrementally better when I’m ready to make that first shift. If I need to express that sadness or grief than I stay away from old Abbott and Costello movies or Donald Duck cartoons. They change my mood very quickly.

So, what does this have to do with Reiki or holistic life coaching? Actually it goes directly to something I chat with each and every Reiki or coaching client about, and we do it during every single Reiki or coaching appointment. It goes right to self-care.

I am responsible for taking the best care of me. No one else can ensure that I eat right, exercise enough or de-stress so that the top of my head doesn’t come off. That’s my job. I’m the only person who knows when I need to have some quiet time, take a nap or visit friends. I expect my husband to respect what I tell him I need, but it’s my job to take care of me first.

Part of taking the best care of me is getting Reiki on a regular basis, speaking to other life coaches supports me as well. But everyday I need to laugh. It’s an absolute necessity for me. If I’m feeling low it lifts me up, if I already feel good, it helps me to feel terrific.

I raised my boys with the message that no matter how low they felt, a smile would make them feel better. In fact, I do recall that there is actual research that supports that theory. Love that!

So, for this week, I encourage you to give it a whirl. What have you got to lose but the blues? My favorite thought when I’m trying to muster a grin? I think of a sweet four year old child, trying to tell a knock-knock joke. Invariably they burst out laughing before they deliver the punch line. Just thinking of their gales of laughter always brings a smile to my face as well. Go ahead, give it a try. I bet you’re smiling already.

Warmly,

Sandy

Attitude Adjustment

Saturday, July 18th, 2009

I seem to recall that in the 80’s the phrase ‘attitude adjustment’ was used again and again. I’m not sure why it went away.

In the real estate world, I’ve learned that agents, buyers and sellers say that everything is location, location, location. I’m convinced that in the real world everything is attitude, attitude, attitude.

This is proven to me again and again. One of my favorite clients just announced that she has just completed her best fiscal year ever. She isn’t devoting more time to her business, she’s still the most devoted wife and mom and her church isn’t seeing any less of her either. What’s changed? Her attitude! She expects to bring in more abundance and prosperity, in all facets of her life. And she is doing just that. We continue her coaching sessions and she has added Reiki to her sessions as well as she has also discovered that self-care makes her more relaxed and more productive as well.

On a day to day basis life happens. We always have two options regarding any situation, no matter how dire or fabulous the situation may appear at first glance. We can celebrate the good, or positive aspects of the circumstances or we can bemoan the negative. This applies in all circumstances.

Yesterday, just about every bit of electronics that I own broke down or mal-functioned in some way or another. I couldn’t seem to find the directions to forward calls on my cell phone, then a few hours later it crashed altogether. No cell. My son had completely crashed and reconstructed my laptop less than a week ago, all cleared of viruses. Yesterday it was struck by another virus. It kept going down. For the life of me it seemed that I wasn’t able to figure out how to work the DVD player or the VCR. Two options. Get frustrated and upset, which wouldn’t have solved any of the above. Or enjoy a cup of tea and read one of the books I have around from one of my favorite authors. Guess which I decided to do.

Today, I am assured that the cell phone is covered under insurance and my virus protection found the virus for my computer, isolated and removed. Getting upset yesterday would have made me feel lousy and it wouldn’t have changed the situation. In other words a rotten attitude would simply have resulted in a rotten evening. Instead I enjoyed my book very much, and the tea eventually became a relaxing glass of wine. A quiet evening spent doing one of my favorite things with the dogs. Just what I needed. I woke up refreshed and relaxed today. In fact, I felt so good that I decided today would be more of the same. The only electronic time today is spent writing this blog. :)I am feeling blessed and grateful today.

We are always with the options of attitude regarding our circumstances. It’s that simple. My step-father, the man I’ve always called Dad, broke his neck and became a quadriplegic at the age of 29. He and my mother decided that wasn’t the end of life. He recovered enough to come home and raise children. She went to nursing school, something she had wanted to do all her life. They used the opportunity to benefit all of us, in fact my dad still refers to each day as a bonus. My parents are amazing life coaches.

This doesn’t mean that there are not frustrations, aggravations or grief in our lives. However, we have the choice to move through these emotions and reach for a slightly better feeling every time we experience them. Attitude counts.

I would encourage you to stop several times a day, notice how you are feeling, what sort of thoughts are going through your mind and what words are coming out of your mouth. If they are harsh, unkind or simply negative I would encourage you to take a few moments. Think and feel your way to a slightly better feeling, a slightly kinder approach. Adjust your attitude and I’m willing to bet your entire life will become just a little bit better.

I wish you a fabulous day and it will be if you choose to see it in just that way.

Warmly,
Sandy

Saying Good-bye

Saturday, April 11th, 2009

I spent time with a friend of mine today, I’ll call her Cindy. Cindy’s mother is dying, Cindy knows it, her mother knows it and the doctors confirm it.

As I chatted with Cindy it was clear to me that she is at peace with the situation. Now don’t get me wrong, Cindy loves her mother and expressed her feeling that sixty-seven is simply too young to expect her mother to die. On the other hand, she told me that she feels her mother is done with life. Recently she has expressed as much, she misses her son who died very young, most of her dear friends have passed and with the exception of her beloved husband, most of her relatives near her age have passed away as well. She misses them dreadfully and feels as though she is simply done with what she was supposed to do here in this life. She’s not depressed; she’s just ready to move on. The disease that is ravaging her body is simply the vehicle that is taking her on this final journey.

Cindy is determined that her mother enjoy the time she has left. Cindy has learned so much from her mother. She was a loving, fun mom to grow up with and has become a trusted friend to the adult Cindy. She showed Cindy that it was possible to not only love her husband but that it was possible to like him and to enjoy being his friend. And now she is teaching Cindy that it is possible to die with grace, dignity and joy.

Unfortunately, Cindy is getting a bit of flak from some people. Apparently there are those who have hinted that Cindy is doing something wrong because she is not crying, wailing constantly and pushing her mother to accept painful treatments that will extend her life, but not improve or even preserve the quality of what is left of her life. So, Cindy asked me for my point of view.

Oh boy. It was time to not only think and feel as Cindy’s friend, but to think this through as the holistic life coach and Reiki master that Cindy knows I am. So, we continued to talk. I asked her how she was dealing with all of this. She told me that she is definitely heartbroken to be saying good-bye to her mother, but that she is saving the tears and grieving for her time with her husband and a few trusted friends. She’s not stuffing her feelings or denying them, simply expressing them to those who know and love her best. Because her mother is determined to enjoy the time left, Cindy is determined to enjoy it with her. She’s told her and will continue to tell her how much she loves her, has enjoyed being her daughter and they talk about the fun they’ve had together. They laugh, tell stories and simply spend time together being happy. Cindy has made it clear to visitors that her mother has requested the time remaining be happy and so she has asked visitors to honor those wishes, in fact she’s insisting on just that. She’s taking special care of her father, again honoring her mother’s wishes and doing what she simply feels is right.

The truth is that both Cindy and her mother are at peace. Her mother is getting ready to meet her God and Cindy is very appreciative of the opportunity to spend this time with her before she passes, she’s now learning how to say good-bye to loved ones and to die with grace, dignity and joy.

Before I left, I gave Cindy a long hug, told her that I would pray for her, her mother and all of her family and friends and I thanked her. While Cindy is learning one more lesson from her mother, she is teaching many of the rest of us as well.

I hope that if I’m ever faced with a similar situation that I am able to move through it with the same peaceful heart, love and gratitude that is demonstrated by Cindy and her mother.

This week, I wish you all the opportunity to express your love and gratitude for the special friends and relatives in your life. I am grateful for Cindy and I thank her for the lesson of love and gratitude.

Warmly,
Sandy

Tiling Adventure

Monday, March 2nd, 2009

If you are a loyal follower of my blog, and I know you are, you will undoubtedly realize that I’m a bit behind this week. Why? Because I, your humble holistic life coach and Reiki practitioner was trying my hand at something new. Tiling. Never fear, I’m not changing professions (though it was suggested during this process) but it did keep me busy the entire weekend.

In the 60’s my parents bought a modest starter house in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. They moved in with 2 kids and thought about the home they would someday move into. Life didn’t work out the way they planned. They are still in that same house, but now it is the beloved home in which they raised 4 kids and where they have lived for over 40 years. Recently, my dad’s wheelchair requirements made a bathroom remodel necessary. My mom is a smart woman, she decided to take advantage of this situation and use it as an opportunity to make the bathroom into the bathroom she has always wanted.

That’s sort of where it got interesting. It became a family project. My brother Steve and two of my sons, Bill and Mike were very enthusiastic about the destruction process. And they were very good it! They beat the living daylights out of that old cast-iron tub, smashing it to bits and then pulled off the old tiling with the sort of enthusiasm that might make you think there was pepperoni pizza hidden behind the walls. For the record, there was no pizza or any other treasure behind the old tile. 🙂 They did it with an awful lot of laughing but it turns out that it didn’t damage the quality of work at all. Thank goodness for my lovely daughter-in-law Felicia and my mom who were right behind them cleaning up the dust and bits of garbage. Steve and the boys then carefully installed the shower pan. They did an amazing job even though I’m not sure any of them had the slightest idea what they were doing until they began.

Along came Saturday. Mike and I went over, thought we’d take Grandma to the store, pick up tile and have it all installed by dinner time. After all, we are completely equipped for this work. Mike is a machinist and as a holistic life coach and Reiki practitioner, who could possibly be more qualified to tile the walls of a shower? Turns out we were slightly off in our calculations. It took 3 hours to select the tile, a couple more hours to run around town and get everything. Did you know that some stores, who shall remain nameless actually think it makes sense to keep a maximum of twenty pieces of trim tile? Naturally that’s the trim Grandma liked, so off we went 20 miles to get the remaining 2 pieces. Never fear, we thought ahead and purchased extra to cover any oops events that may happen. We actually began the work by 3pm. You guessed it; it took Saturday and Sunday to get the tile up on the walls. It was actually an awful lot of fun! Mike was great to work with. He made all the cuts on the tiles, with very few errors. Laughed at me as the tiles would slip and used that eagle eye along with a level to be sure the lines stayed straight.

This evening I will grout and will seal it all up in a couple of days. I still have to repaint the room, but Grandma and Grandpa will be able to finally use their shower by this weekend.

Is there a lesson here somewhere? I think there might be. Once again my parents have reminded us that it’s important to look for a positive resolution to a problem. I applaud the efforts of my family, they didn’t hesitate to jump in and make it all come together. None of us came into this project with any of the skills to pull this off. Think of the professions involved, holistic life coach and Reiki practitioner, two machinists and a security guard. Even in Milwaukee, Wisconsin this doesn’t add up to professional tile talent. But it worked out. Because of a can do attitude the necessary changes were made on a very limited budget, even better, it looks amazing.

Now, how do I break it to my husband that our kitchen and bathroom floors are going to be tiled as well as our shower walls and all he has to do it move the very heavy items?

This week I hope you have the opportunity to find out that you can do something you never imagined you were capable of doing. I know it will make you feel fabulous.

With warmth,
Sandy

Teachers

Saturday, December 27th, 2008

I was thinking about my parents the other day when the most obvious conclusion came to me, they are and have always been awesome life coaches.

From my earliest memory my parents have taught me to try to find the positive side to almost any situation. They never denied whatever circumstances existed, they simply put their efforts into improving that situation and they taught their children to try to do the same.

Back in 1973 my dad broke his neck in a diving accident. The result was that he became a quadriplegic. During the next year, my mom split her days, going to the hospital for several hours in the morning to be with my dad, learning about his new disability and being his strongest supporter. She would then come home to be with us four kids, my elder brother was fourteen at the time, I was 12 and my two younger sisters were 8 and 3 years old. My mom would supervise homework and dinner and then taking one or two of the kids with her she would return to the hospital until 9 at night. She kept this routine day in and day out. While I remember her crying and being naturally upset, she didn’t dwell on it. I don’t remember her ranting or carrying on, I simply remember that life changed and she rolled with it well. She kept in close contact with my aunt and uncle who lived nearby, accepted and appreciated their amazing support. My mom is a terrific life coach.

When I would go to see my dad he would smile and laugh as he always had. He showed us how he was learning to do wheelies in his wheelchair, telling us all about the physical therapy he was going through everyday as he learned to walk again and making sure that we got to know the other men in the ward, all of whom had suffered some type of spinal cord injury. He did all he could to put us at ease and to teach us that while everyone there had some sort of injury, each one of them had plans to go back to his life and family as soon as possible. In short life goes on and he taught us to look forward to it with optimism and enthusiasm. My dad is a fabulous life coach as well.

As the years went by, my mom went to nursing school to become an LPN, she always told us that my dad being disabled gave her this opportunity as he was now home with the kids. She took positive action and made positive strides forward, again showing all of us that she was a great life coach.

My dad accepted his new found limitations, taking on the roles of head cook and chief babysitter. He always told us and tells us to this day, that every day is a bonus. As the years went by my dad continued to work hard to keep the mobility that he had gained in the year after he got hurt. The doctors told him that he would never be able to walk again, but he did, showing us that having a goal and a positive, determined attitude makes anything possible. I told you he was a terrific life coach.

Time has gone on. In 1973 my dad was told that he had an outside chance of living for another 15 years. I remember that he used to laugh at that, and I think he’s still laughing. It’s now 35 years since his accident. He no longer walks, using a wheelchair to get around now as his condition has deteriorated in recent years. But here’s the thing, my parents are still showing us how to move forward in a positive manner. They are not a sweet, cuddly couple that’s likely to gush about one another. Instead they are loud, friendly and sometimes crabby, but underneath all the noise as they laugh, tease and make good natured fun of one another, there is no doubt about the respect, optimist and love that they still demonstrate very clearly. Each of their children and grandchildren has been blessed to be witness to this behavior and attitude and I have to believe that we are all the better because of their teachings. I’m very grateful to have been raised by amazing life coaches and teachers.

Wishing you a day filled with optimism, enthusiasm and wonderful life coaches.

Warmly,
Sandy

Goals, Plans and Dreams

Saturday, December 6th, 2008

Do you have goals? What do you hope to accomplish? Where do you intend to go? What are your dreams?

I encourage you to take some serious time to think about these questions. After all, how can you possible work out a strategy for achieving goals if you don’t know what they are? I encourage you to shoot for the moon, truly. Sit down with a piece of paper and pen, or at your computer, whatever works for you. Jot down every desire, everything you dream of doing, everything you hope and intend to be, everywhere you plan to go, all that you intend to bring into your life. Brainstorm. Write it all down. You might be very surprised at some of the things you discover about yourself.

A few months ago I decided to make a vision board. I really thought this would be a very simple process. I’m a grown woman after all; I have a pretty darned good idea what I want, where I want to go, etc. And so I sat down thinking I’d have this done in very short order. Not so much. It took me half of forever. I used magazines, newspapers, etc.

The idea was to cut out pictures, words and phrases that appealed to me. This helped me to focus and define my goals and dreams. Then, using a glue stick, apply these pictures, words and phrases to my posterboard, creating my vision board.

The first evening it took hours. For some reason almost none of the pictures spoke to me at all, however words felt as though they were practically jumping off of the pages at me. I found many words describing feelings, thoughts and ideas that truly spoke to me. I cut them out and glued them to vision board. It took me hours. The next day, I felt a need to go back to my vision board. I pulled out the magazines again, but now the pictures seemed to speak to me, not the words at all. I found myself pulled again and again to pictures of water of all sorts, gardens of many types, etc. I let instinct guide me and I truly enjoyed putting my vision board together.

What does a vision board have to do with goals? Well, my vision board was about the places I intend to go, the gardens I intend to have, etc. My intentions are my goals. It’s been proven again and again that we are much more likely to reach our goals if we write them down and place them somewhere that we can see them daily. A vision board can be a list of goals, pictures, or whatever speaks to you. I encourage you to make one soon, or 15 if that’s better for you!

A few days ago I was chatting with a client about vision boards and realized that I need to work on a new one. Except that now I don’t want one board. I want or perhaps more correctly, I need to make several. One is about travel, the trips that I intend to take. Another is about the home that I intend to live in; a third is about personal health and fitness. I think you get the idea.

I would encourage you to set some goals, really allow yourself to think as big as your heart will allow. Imagine yourself accomplishing these goals, think about how you will feel when you achieve them and enjoy the feeling. Get excited! Then write them down, draw them, take photos, cut out pictures, whatever speaks to you. Put them on one or more vision boards and keep this board somewhere that you are able to focus on it for at least 5 minutes a day. Keep it somewhere that you are able to see it frequently. Read the words aloud and allow yourself to feel the excitement that you know you will feel as you drive that amazing car (if a new car is one of your goals), smell the fragrances, feel the elation, hear the sounds, really immerse yourself totally in the success that you intend to experience.

The fact is that we are much more likely to achieve that which we are able to visualize, feel and experience in our hearts. So give it a shot.

Wishing you a fabulous time as you discover all of your goals, plans and dreams.

With warmth,
Sandy