Created: Friday, 27 December 2013 16:14
Bob and I joked about rating our Christmas cards and giving people feedback on them. The joke was how inappropriate rating and ranking can be - and how inhibiting. Imagine how many cards we would get next year if we told people they came in tenth or thirtieth in our Christmas card evaluations!
When we enjoyed the cards together before bed, we actually did "rate" them with a very sweet tone. We saw each card in terms of its essence, and what award it could get. The most personal card, the most clever card, the most nostalgic card.
His sister underlined words in her card for emphasis, which is a family practice, so her card got kudos for family traditions. It wasn't really a ranking, it was a celebration. It was praise. It was communion with the sender. We feel closer to our community for doing that.
Created: Friday, 27 December 2013 03:39
Lily finished massage school less enamored with massage than when she started. Massage school is so clinical these days, and there can be little respect for massage as an art. But Lily found a place to work where she can be herself, and she loves massage again. I felt that in her hands.
Angela can't stop smiling. She apprenticed in nutritional counseling with Bob. She has great respect for him. She is not like him. She can't compete in his field with his approach. But recently, Angela dropped her comparisons and discovered her own voice. She celebrates her sense of being "free to be me." She has her own approach and her work has become a joy since she came home to herself.
"It's hard to shake of someone else's model," she told me. That is so true. In fact, SpeakStrong is necessary for that reason. It's easy to say "be yourself". But shaking off years of programming isn't as easy as deciding to. It's a balancing act to be enriched but not defined by others.
A lot of us are coming home to ourselves these days and feeling freer than ever to be who we are. It's exciting to see it. It's even more exciting to live it.
Created: Wednesday, 25 December 2013 14:21
Evan Hodkins helps me see the odd perfection in everything - even brokenness.
Mike Rother teaches me rigor and precision in creative discovery.
My elder parents have shown me how patience with limitations and the diminishments of aging fosters love.
Angela Thompson shows me the oak trees in my acorns.
Cassia Powell pulls me out of the ethers and plants me back on the ground.
Becky Lane models how powerful teaching and tools can be in conscious and capable hands.
Bob Rose gives me a foundation that allows me to soar to new heights. His greatness is revealed to me in new ways each day.
Linnea Lundeen - my newly rediscovered best friend from childhood gives me something I will post about later.
And you give me a reason to keep sharing my discoveries, my process and my insights. You give me community.
Thank you, every one.
Created: Tuesday, 24 December 2013 02:48
Christmas Eve 2013 I decided to limit my commitments and shift my focus to foundations and maintenance. I set out to sort, straighten, shine and standardize my world. Clean up my messes. Stop being so random and start developing stablizing routines. Change habits that don't serve me. I started out thinking I'd let myself have a whole week to do this. Then I gave myself two. Eventually I realized what a Herculean task I had taken on, and gave myself a year. Much of it wasn't pretty. Hercules began his mission by cleaning stable dung. Well, you never know how much dung there is until you stop reaching out and instead, turn in and start cleaning.
That year ends now. And guess what! I need six more months!
It's exciting to look back and see how much I accomplished. It's humbling to see how far from my goals I still am. I had a bad digestive attack today. That was one of the things on my target list to correct. On the other hand, when I want a clothing item I can find it pretty fast. Actually, I can find most anything I want quickly now. No digging. Yay!
Goals give direction to decisions we make day to day. And my goals did just that. I don't have the level of order I hoped for. Some metaphorical dung still remains to be cleaned. But my world has transformed. I did that! And I am giving myself another six months of building foundations as priority. I'm also nurturing my inner Achiever a little bit at a time to prepare myself with the warrior energy I will need for the next chapter of my life. But foundations still trump. I'm getting a bit tired of being so responsible. I'm looking forward to the next stage. But I am called to complete this stage before moving in to the next.
I'm doing this for me. I'm also doing it for everyone else who was affected by the "dung" and disorder that my outward focus ignored, and for everyone else who will be served by the next chapter of my life, offered from strong, clean foundations.
We're going to a candle-lighting ceremony and that will feel like a celebration of this amazing year. It makes me feel like getting out the little guitar and my red striped pajamas and singing. I am grateful to myself for the gift I gave myself over the last year. Thank-you, me! It just keeps getting better. Wishing you blessed new beginnings, on track and in tune with your calling.
Created: Monday, 23 December 2013 00:38
When Bob and I were thinking about doing our next retreat at home, something about getting the word "stay-cation" crystallized it for us. I was concerned that we might dliute our time off, being a 30-second commute to our offices, but having the word anchored the focus for us.
Another word has been very helpful in focusing our time. Bob was talking with our mentor Evan about how taking care of a problem in the evening forced him to pull himself together which "kept him from dissipating". Somehow that struck him powerfully, and he honors the sacredness of relaxation time since.
Of course, the word holiday comes from holy day, and that also means whole-y day, which is what we use the time for. Renewing our wholeness with ourselves, our worlds and each other.
I wish you wholeness.
Created: Saturday, 21 December 2013 22:23
First, for my Feedburner subscribers - so sorry about the errant posts going out. We're doing a lot of work on the blog, and that seems to confuse the feed. Someday it will be sorted and well worth the kerfuffles.
Bob and I are taking a real holiday. Pulling the plug. Not going into total silence, but close. We used to go to Santa Fe for spa intensives a couple times a year, but this year the spa is coming to us.
It hasn't started yet, but it already feels like we're being enveloped in beauty and ease. We're preparing things so we won't have to come out of our massages, cranial sacral, reflexology, etc. to take care of things. We're creating a sacred and beautiful environment.
As I settle in, I find my heart welling up in gratitude for so many things. One, of course, is to be able to pull back and dive into complete relaxation like this. Another is the incredible teachers I've had over the years. Evan Hodkins is my main one, but there are so many others.
Last year Bob and I set out to create "space for grace" in our lives. We still have a ways to go, but the transformation over the last year is gratifying. That journey started on Christmas Eve. Seeing how far we've come inspires me to create a vision for next year. What will it be? What will yours be?
Blessings to you all. Thanks for being a part of my journey to me.
Created: Saturday, 14 December 2013 13:25
I'm reading Carl Jung's last book, Man and His Symbols. Unlike my former habit, I am starting at the beginning, with the forward. I never used to read/experience books in their wholeness. Now I do. The forward is providing context.
This forward is by Coordinating Editor John Freeman. Jung insisted on Freeman being the editor. Freeman quickly found out he was chosen because Jung considered him to be an "average reader".
I found this very exciting. Why? Because it shows the perfection of imperfection. Freeman was the perfect choice because he lacked expertise. He "spoke strong" throughout the process to make sure the authors explained things in simple, intelligible ways.
Too often, we try to look like we get it when we don't. Too often we try to cover up our struggles, confusion and judgments. Freeman helped Man and His Symbols be readable by not doing any of that.
I love it when someone on my team goes "huh?" Well, I hate it first and love it second. I also love it when some on my team goes "wow." I need that, too. But what I really need is the inside story of how my work is received. Jung had that with Freeman. Who do you have that with? Who do you give that to? Do you know that your doubts and confusions can be exactly what others need to hear at times?
Created: Thursday, 12 December 2013 14:14
(Note to subscribers - there were a few bugs in the site and an older post went out yesterday. Sorry about that! We're hoping it's corrected now.)
I met "Lily" before she went to massage school. She's a new graduate. When I scheduled with her, I asked if she would be willing to come to my home. She lives closer to me than her office and I have a table, so all she needed to do was show up. She started talking about what they told her in massage school about charging for home visits.
I replied that I didn't care as much about what they told her in massage school as what works for her and works for me. With everything being set-up already, if it was just as easy to come here, why charge more?
Lily agreed. This is our transaction. The school gives good advice based on experience and is worth listening to; however, every situation is different and to apply an external rule without considering the situation makes no sense.
I'm looking forward to my massage.
Rules are great. So are common sense and relationships. Where are you applying rules instead of relating?