“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” – Lao Tzu
The capacity to hold love for something or someone, that deep sense of affection and care or wellbeing for another and then the capacity to let others hold that for us is far from a simple endeavor.
As I have been reflecting on this past year and the moments in which love has emerged or has been lost, I'm cultivating a deeper curiosity of how to become a better steward of love in all aspects of my life.
The word stewardship implies an active intention to care for and take care of, so, what does stewardship of "love" look like? I imagine it might look like keeping the fire lit for what feels most important and cultivating a deeper connections versus maintaining transactional relationships with ourselves, with others, with our work and with our environment.
As we immerse ourselves in this season of giving, receiving, and engaging in...
This Tuesday (12/21) will be the Winter Solstice- our darkest day of the year.
It is my favorite time of the year to bring closure to the past and set intention for what we want to create and experience in the year to come. As a practice, I like to incorporate the following "mini-retreat" recipe:
1. Prepare to honor the darkness and welcome the light. Life is full of dark, scary, painful times. We must take time to properly honor and grieve what has been lost and cannot be recovered. We must also acknowledge that darkness can be a time for rest and when we are rested, we are more prepared to welcome the light of new experiences, opportunities and possibility. How can you carve out some time to honor the darkness and welcome in the light?
2. Acknowledge the role of winter in the natural change cycle. How some beings must shut down and hibernate to save energy while some plants and...
You have the right to love....
I think that is a message that is getting buried right now and yet it is the power of love that is going to help navigate whatever challenges we are facing.
So, a simple reminder again- you have the right to love....
Exercise that right...love it up and be open to receiving it from others who are exercising too :)
We studied Systems Theory as part of sustainability curriculum in graduate school. One of the foundational concepts is that the "whole is greater than the sum of its parts."
Take the human body for example - we are made up of several complex systems (nervous, respiratory, circulatory, musculoskeletal, digestive, etc) and together they create one heck of a unique human (the whole). It's not just these parts that make the human... it's how they work together, in connection. If one of those parts is not functioning well, it impacts the whole system.
Sometimes when we are feeling burnt out in business or life in general, it can be helpful to examine the connectedness of our "systems" and energize and deepen the connections that might not be functioning as well as you want them to be. Such...
My family loves to go river rafting. This summer we hired professional guides and paddled in the Grand Canyon. It had been awhile since we were in someone else's boat, following their commands, and we did so willingly as it felt like the stakes were high.
I loved watching the Guide read the water ahead and then tell us to paddle forward two strokes or four or paddle hard or take a break. Each of those commands represented a strategy to navigate the moment - fully knowing what's coming up around the riverbend.
Taking a break becomes a super important strategy to be able to sustain the paddling through the big waves.
It's no different in navigating business.
We know that success comes from showing up, doing hard things, and building systems over time that will make your operations more effective and efficient.
We make waves on purpose and sometimes by accident- and if we are following the river analogy, we won't be able to sustain our work without...
Chances are if you are feeling burned out in your business, you have some thoughts or belief systems that aren't helping you.
I think it's important to remember that no product, service or system is created without a vision and a belief that it is possible.
If you are struggling to believe, it's time to tackle those limiting thoughts and make a choice of what you want to believe on purpose.
Why? Because our thoughts and feelings determine our actions and behaviors which lead to our results.
If what and how you think is paramount to your future desired state, don't you think it's crucial that you "mind your mind" and change it if need be?
The first step in this process is to track your thoughts and become more aware of the current beliefs that are swirling around up there.
What thoughts or beliefs do you have about your business - that might not be serving you?
As you track these thoughts, notice the sensations or feelings that come up for you.
Then, make a...
Some goals are measurable and some are intangible and hard to quantify but are just as important to plan for and to track their success.
At the beginning of each week I set the intention for where I want to put my time, energy and focus both in my personal life and in my business. At the end of the week, I reflect back and see if my actions followed my intentions.
This routine allows for some closure to the week and some clarity around where I am on track toward my larger business and life goals.
These are some of the key questions I ask:
What went well this week?
What went off the rails and why?
What did I learn?
How did or do I move forward?
Who am I grateful for this week?
How did my actions create a positive impact at home, work or in the community?
What is one tiny way I can celebrate (however big or small the accomplishment)?
This weekly practice has a cumulative impact over time as it helps to create new intentions and...
Thinking about the end of your business while you are starting it or navigating its growth can seem counter intuitive, but it can actually be one of the most powerful planning strategies. This process can be just as much fun as planning an adventure, road trip or vacation.
In each of those scenarios, you are likely to have a purpose for your adventure, a destination and some idea of what you want to experience, right? And at the end - you can picture getting home safely, having some time to decompress and unpack, and then having memories to return to.
Your business is no different. All things eventually come to an end and it can bring great peace and joy to know what that desired state looks like ahead of time, so that you can make decisions along the way to support that end.
While some of these ideas have been interesting...