Little steps. Big life.

October long lost blog

I figured it was time to resurface after a nearly two month blogging hiatus. And especially when my last post was about the hot-messness of life. As I typed that sentence, I just heard this song lyric on one of my Pandora stations: “no regrets…everything will work out right…”

And I do believe things will work out right. Since late August, I’ve cleaned my current home for open houses and showings approximately 857 times (well, it feels like it anyway) and we actually had an offer and a contract — ba-bam!

Then the buyers got cold feet after inspections revealed that, by damn, I am living in a 75 year old house. Sigh. They backed out. But they backed out late because they were dragging their feet and we said “thank you very much for your time; we’ll be taking your good faith deposit for not rolling with your end of the deal during this time of transition.”

So it goes. And so I have a lovely 3000 sq. ft. home to offer you if you’re in the market for a new place…

Here’s what I can offer you from a personal and professional standpoint if you find yourself living in a space of uncertainty or transition in your life that doesn’t always feel good: When I came to a place of acceptance and surrender that we were going to be in a process that is an emotional and financial roller coaster ride, I felt a greater sense of steadiness than when I tried to anticipate pitfalls and envision worse case scenarios.

When you can be proactive (meaning, give a shit about your situation and do what you can to move forward with a positive mindset) and not keep a stranglehold on the outcomes you want, then you allow room for things to unfold the way they need to…and maybe even unfold in a way that seems downright miraculous to you.

Even in the face of our potential buyers backing out of their contract, we got some serendipitous and miraculous news in the middle of it all. All I can tell you is that I believe my my charming, eccentric, kind and loving late father-in-law has his hand in things. And I can just see him doing that breathless, soundless laugh of his and bellowing “Yessss, Jesus loves me!!!” as we turn every corner of this experience.

I haven’t been actively writing or communicating via my newsletter or my blog in the past seven weeks and in some ways I feel a pang of regret about that because I love to write so much; but I also know that my written absence was the result of asking myself what I needed during this time.

What did I want and need that was proactive and energy-fueling versus what I might tell myself I “should” or “had to” do?

How was I going to take care of myself with all of this stuff going on? How could I find steadiness when I wasn’t sure where my home would be in November? Or January?  So the rest of this post is a list of those things. Some are solid practices I’ve had in place f0r a long time. Some are just plain fun because I’ve got to have fun … pretty much every day. Some are new discoveries or adventures that I’m into right now or working on for the future.

These practices make up a life — the one I choose. I can’t tell you how many clients I’ve worked with hour after hour these past couple of months where I’ve helped them step into an understanding that sometimes changes and realizations of a passion or purpose don’t always come in grand, sweeping moments. Yes, those moments can and will happen, but most often, it’s all in the details.

If you’re putting pressure on yourself to figure your life out, take a step back and just start with being curious each day. Ask yourself what you’re interested in or consider what intrigues you. Decide who you want to spend your time with. Create habits that you want to grow old with.

So these are practices, habits, people, places and things that are my jam right now — feel free to try on, borrow, steal or consider or share some of your practices in the comments below.

  • Two books I’m reading and recommending: 
    • Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself: How to Lose Your Mind and Create a New One by Dr. Joe Dispenza – This book is BLOWIN’ my mind. It’s an awesomely accessible work written by a man with a background in neuroscience and biochemistry who offers his knowledge on how to recalibrate your mind. It’s all parts brain science, the quantum field, creation vs. survival, being vs. doing and meditation. So much of the work that I do with people is about using the power of their mind and mindset to create their lives. There is nothing that makes me more hot-damn-happy than sitting across from a woman who has let her mind open up to all that is possible for her life. She is choosing her thoughts and beliefs on purpose, articulating them and acting on her life from an inspired place. When I get to witness those moments, it’s almost like I can see energy happen — I know that sounds kind of weird, but that’s the only way I can explain it. If you’re looking for some personal development reading of the highest order, I recommend this book with all my heart.
    • Playing Big: Find Your Voice, Your Mission, Your Message by Tara Mohr. When executive-turned-life-coach Tara Mohr asked the female readers of her blog what the biggest challenge of their lives was, the response that trumped work-life balance, health, stress, time management, finances and relationships? It was this: “I’m playing small.” I’m 1/4 of the way into it and it’s proving to be a powerful, deep, transformative and practical book about womanhood and leadership. More on “playing big” under “Friendship and Connection.”
  • Piloxing – Yes, I’m still the Zumba lady, but I teach a lot of other stuff now, too. I’m always curious about what’s new or what I haven’t tried before that feels fun, challenging and works with how I can and want to move my body as I age. I came across Piloxing via one of my Zumba friends and decided to try it this month. It’s a combination of Pilates and boxing along with the grace and beauty of dance movements. Seriously. I’m in love. I might be so in love that I’ll get licensed to teach it some time soon…you know, while I’m trying to deal with two houses, two kids and all of that. I love sharing something I’m really passionate about that moves other people, both physically and emotionally. And the music…I’m all about my music in a class and the Piloxing mixes are killer.
  • Travel – Do yourself a solid and click the link I’ve connected to the word “travel.” Breathe it in. Beautiful, huh? I thought so, too. I’ve become a woman who loves to travel. It’s not that I didn’t care for it in the past, but it just didn’t fit with my work and family life a few years ago. Life has changed and I’ve been collecting a lot of frequent flyer miles lately. This week, I’m nostalgic for my favorite city, Paris, since that is where I was exactly one year ago. I love traveling on my own as a woman alone. I like meeting up with people when I get where I’m staying (like the women who were in Paris with me last year), but there is something so adventurous and hopeful about embarking on a solo trip. I think we can see what we value in our lives by looking at where we put our time, attention and money. Lately, that has been traveling for me. Next April, I will be staying in the villa you just looked at for a week. One of my friends is hosting a retreat for a small group of women in Italy on the Amalfi Coast.  I’ve never been to Italy. I have a shit-ton of stuff happening right now and for the foreseeable future. It requires a significant investment. I know all of this. And I also know that it is my great desire to be there. I am supposed to go. It’s intuitive and unfounded as far as facts and reason go, but I’m making it happen with every roll of quarters I deposit and every payroll check I write myself. It’s a big leap and I can’t wait to see what I learn.
  • Friendship and Connection  – Last month, one of my dearest friends had a birthday party for his partner where all of the guests showed up wearing white — I had on white dress and my false eyelashes and it couldn’t have been a more perfect night. I had no idea how fabulous everyone looks in white — like a bunch of angels walking around…with cocktails : ) I also had two evenings at Louvino last month that were so lovely; women who didn’t know one another at all showed up and made connections with others that had way more soul than sliding a business card into someone’s hand. Two weeks ago, I started to cry over lunch (don’t worry — this is good) with another friend when she told me about an upcoming professional gig and how lit up she was about it. I cried because the person who brought her into the fold of that job was someone she met at an event I created and hosted at the beginning of the year. We can’t really know the impact something we say, do or create is going to have on people. I am sitting alone in my beautiful office on this fall day and it can feel lonely some days as I do my thing. I think “playing big” for me — starting now — will be womaning up to calling to bring women together and helping them create personal happiness, meaning and good health a lot more than I already do. I’m really good at that and I’ve been “hiding” a bit as far as that goes. Hiding behind my perfectionism. Thinking I don’t know what I have to offer or teach (all lies : ) . Or that it’s not enough.  I can touch many people with my one life  —  maybe even more so than when I’m sitting across the room from one person in my office or on the phone with my headset on, pacing the room and coaching.
  • Beauty – One of the first things I do with a client is to have her name her values. It’s from there that she can change and create a life that’s congruent with what’s most important to her. I walk my talk, so I check myself frequently on what’s important to me, as well, and whether I feel like I’m living that out each day. From the first time I worked with a coach seven years ago until this very day, the word “beauty” always surfaces. Sometimes I kind of beat up on myself for this, because I love beautiful things and that’s involved some shopping. Or — and I’m being really vulnerable here — I decided this year to encourage the beauty of my face by dabbling in some Botox. (I wonder how many people will judge and unsubscribe to my blog upon that admission — I hope not. I hope people can be open to seeing that each woman needs to live her life and make her choices as she sees fit.) I spend a lot of time in the gym and I’m fascinated by the beauty of our bodies — we’re all just a bunch of walking miracles, really. It’s amazing what we can do when we challenge our bodies and our minds. We are so much stronger than we let ourselves believe. Stronger emotionally. Stronger physically. And with this new house, I’m doing something I haven’t done in any of the other three houses we’ve lived in (or any of my apartments before I got married): I’m intentionally choosing the look and feel of our new home. It’s everything from the selection of a sofa to the subtleties of paint color and the choice of a light fixture. I want to create a beautiful space, not just slide into into it with odds and ends. I’ve never really let myself want that before and it feels good — different and good. I even hired a lady to help me and she said I left little work for her because my “exquisite taste” (haaay now) and elegant instincts were on point. I just have to trust myself that my eyes and my heart know what is beautiful.

I hope the cool color of October inspires you to embrace or create beauty in your own life. Cozy up with some books. Spend time with your friends. Move your body. Travel out of your comfort zone — even if it’s just to another part of town. Create your own little steps for living a big life.

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