Wednesday Words

I want to move through the next week as if I had diamonds on the soles of my shoes. Literally and metaphorically.

Joyful, light, sensitively touching the ground, quick, direct, easy, connected: moving powerfully as part of a group and always a unique individual, responsive and playful.

What about you?

Enjoy!

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Come on 9!

For some people things come in threes, but it seems that 100 is my number.

I just finished 100 Days 100 Breaths, and now I’m just nine people short of 100 folks on my One and Only List. Will you help me get there?

More than reaching 100 (which would be cool), I want you to on the One & Only List because I know the free workbook Permission Granted: Move Into Change with Your Own Approval can help jump-start changes that will make your life more joyful, free and balanced. There are simple exercises in it that may help you think in new ways about old stuff. I worked hard on it, and it’s good.

I want you to have access to tips and tools for self coaching that you won’t find on the blog, and advanced notice about classes or workshops before I announce to everyone else.   This is my way of making more of what I know available to you. It may not be the time for one- on-one coaching for you, or you may not even want it. If you’re perfectly happy hanging here on the blog, it’s all good.

So what else might come my way in groups of 100? Please not Dalmatians. JOIN HERE

Please share with your friends, thanks.

Not THAT Kind of Gratitude

When I first started hearing about the benefits of gratitude from the world of positive psychology, I resisted. In my childhood home, gratitude was spoken about in the same breath with “selfish” and “myopic.” Gratitude was a “should,” like those apologies I faked. Insisting I feel gratitude for what I had when I wanted more was manipulative and resulted in me questioning my confidence, dreams and ambition.  Who would want that?

I was also worried that there was an inevitable progression from gratitude to contentment and from contentment to laziness and complacency. I’m not alone in this thinking. It’s ubiquitous in our culture. You need only look at those around you (probably sitting close by) who have difficulty acknowledging their strengths or achievements for fear they won’t want to improve if not found lacking. This stems partly from a variety of societal influences (Judeo-Christian guilt, Calvinist ideas of moral living, Freudian distrust of our powerful unconscious desires, etc.) which evoke a lack of trust in ourselves, a version of fear.

When, I recommend gratitude practice for clients and practice it on my own, this is not the type of gratitude I mean.

For gratitude to be positive, it’s important to look at motivation for wanting “more.”  At the risk of over simplifying, there are generally two types of motivation.

One type has an edge. It has a grasping driven quality lacking joy; be more, get more, do more, have more than someone else! This type of motivation is often about the lack of belief in ones own worth. It’s driven by “I’m not good enough.” The “more” that gets generated from this source often doesn’t satisfy in any meaningful way and requires constant feeding to stave of feelings of emptiness. And, it also gives desire for “more” a bad name, because it breeds greed and the lack of empathy that goes with it.

Wanting more is fundamental to the human condition. In its purest form it’s the desire to express creation by blooming; by metaphorically and literally planting seeds to create more of what we love. It is recognition that life is always moving forward. Moving forward means “more” is coming. Until we are no longer breathing,there’s a “next.” If we believe this  inclination for more is something bad, something about which we should feel guilt or shame,then we shut down our life force.

More can come about because we recognize that a new expression is needed. Perhaps a truer manifestation of who we are now as we continue to grow. It could be in the areas of  how we work; a refined definition of purpose; a change in life balance; the desire for a new skill or, the way we are in our relationships (to name just some). This fresh something is what comes from connection to our innate creative nature as members of a generative universe.

So where does gratitude come into all this? Harvard Psychologist, Daniel Goleman, reminds us that gratitude requires awareness, recognition and acknowledgment. If someone gives us flowers, we must first be aware that we received something, recognize that it came from this other person who was thinking of us, and then acknowledge to them that we appreciate their gift. If you give something to me,  I see it, I feel it in my heart, and I give back to you by acknowledging your gift. We can be grateful to people. And, we can  open our awareness to the small and large everyday gifts that are always around us.  When notice those and acknowledge them, we can reach a levels of joy that’s often described as, spiritual.

Gratitude and the desire for “more,” are sister lakes watered by the same spring.  When we drink in the gifts around us, we become more aware of the unique gifts we bring to, and receive from, the larger whole. As we create ourselves we find more, we want more,  we want to give more, we desire to make more so we feel our impact on the world in whatever ways that has meaning for us.  Feeling gratitude for what we do have gives us access to the joy and grounding for that expression.

Wednesday Words

chooseauthenticitybadgeIt is a choice and the door to joy and freedom. You can download this badge here. If you don’t know know the work of Brene Brown, go now and listen to her TED talk or better yet, read her books.

If you like what you read here, please share with your friends. And, you can go to moveintochange.com to find out about coaching and coaching with me there.

Yes, That Was Me

Yes, that was me skipping.

If you were in Manhattan somewhere near 77th street on the east side you might have seen me (red cowboy boots, black coat and hat) step-hopping like a six year old.

Smiling too. Really, how can you skip down the street without a goofy grin?

Someday I may reach the level of freedom where I can skip for absolutely no reason at all, however today, I had reasons:

(in no specific order)

  • It’s fun to be me.
  • I spent the day working with uncommon, courageous,  and clever people – my clients.
  • The sun is shining.
  • A man sitting on the corner liked my boots.
  • A Buddhist monk, bowed to me, put a bracelet on my wrist and wished me peace.
  • I get to help people identify what is essential in themselves and give them tools they did not have before (or had but didn’t know how to use) to make that gift their compass.

And, I made my train.

If you’re the type of person who can skip in public, will you share, here, those things that inspire your skippy self?

If you aren’t into that kind of thing, what makes your heart (if not your body) leap for joy?