Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

mindset personal growth Aug 03, 2020
Photo by Doran Erickson on Unsplash

A good friend of mine set an extremely ambitious goal for herself this year: to walk 100 kilometers in 24 hours or less. That’s a little over 62 miles, for our American friends. 

Why, you may wonder, would someone choose to do this? 

There are any number of reasons, but the most compelling to me, and likely the one that is motivating my friend, is simply to extend the boundaries of what is possible for her. To see what she’s made of; to see whether she can push through beyond whatever limitations she might have previously placed on herself.

Yesterday, my friend walked 80 kilometers over 16 hours. She set out at 5:30 am, and completed her trek at around 9:30 pm. I have no doubt that, come September, she will complete that 100K walk, as planned.

When was the last time you set a goal that seemed unattainable? Or perhaps one that seemed attainable for others, but not for you?

I’m going to argue that you should be doing this...

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History Repeats Itself. And That's a Good Thing!

mindset Jul 27, 2020
Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

A week or so ago, on a whim, I pulled a book off the shelf that I’ve never even cracked open before. It’s one of those Reader’s Digest compendiums of which my parents were ever so fond: “Kings & Queens of England – Murder, Mayhem, and Scandal, 1066 to the Present Day”. Published in 2003, it’s just a tad out of date now, but no matter.

The only reason I kept this book after my parents died, is that I learned absolutely NOTHING about the British royals in all of my school years, and I figured someday it would be good to acquire some knowledge on the subject, especially given that my mother hailed from jolly old England. 

Why, you ask? How would this knowledge help me in life?

Well, I didn’t think it would. I just thought it would make for interesting conversation at parties.

“You know, they called King Richard I ‘the Lionheart’, but he managed to go and get himself captured...

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Unlearning What Our Parents Taught Us

growth mindset Jul 19, 2020

I had a rough week.

Not because of anything anyone said or did to me; and not because of anything that happened to me.

It was entirely because of the way I reacted to something that happened.

I submitted a document I’d created to my coach, for a critique, looking for advice and suggestions on how to improve it. But I had a preconceived idea in my head of the type of feedback I expected to receive (aesthetic improvements I could make to the document), and when the suggestions didn’t fit those parameters, I took it personally.

The feedback was mostly about the substance of the content itself, and that shook my self-confidence to its core. I put my own spin, my own interpretation, on the suggestions I was being given, and instead of viewing it as positive information I could use to make improvements, I let myself believe it meant I had done a lousy job.

I had failed.

I was a failure.

I might as well just give up.

Do you see how that escalated? And it all happened within a...

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Do You Know What You Want?

mindset Jul 13, 2020

Do you know what you want?

We live in a society filled with choice, and North Americans are truly blessed.

Store shelves are packed (and yes, I know there is some scarcity right now due to COVID-19 and disrupted supply chains, but realistically, other than toilet paper, have you actually run out of ANYTHING important?) Perhaps your particular favourite brand was sold out, but for the most part, we are still extremely well-supplied despite the pandemic.

With online shopping, virtually anything we want or need, and can afford, is at our fingertips.

Social media, the world wide web, and television provide us with an instant and vast array of information sources.

A teenager in high school is faced with an incredible assortment of possibilities for a career. And they are warned early on that their choice of study subjects in those tender years will lock them into a certain career path, or out of one. That’s a lot of pressure to put on someone who isn’t yet even allowed to...

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How Does Your Garden Grow?

Uncategorized Jul 05, 2020

Do you have a green thumb?

I’m one of those people who’s very hit-and-miss when it comes to taking care of plants. My favourite type of gardening is “plant it and leave it” – spring bulbs, perennials, ground cover, ornamental grasses…you get the idea.

But this year, on a whim, I decided to try my hand at growing cherry tomatoes and bell peppers in containers in my back yard. And, to my pleasant surprise, it’s working! No sign of peppers yet (although I’m told it’s a bit early, anyway), but I have a number of tiny baby tomatoes on the way, and I’m beyond excited:

As I watch these little tomatoes slowly develop, I realize it’s like a metaphor for what we go through as human beings.

Our physical bodies renew themselves completely every 7 years; that’s how long it takes for every single cell in the body to be born, live out its life cycle, and die, to be replaced by a brand new version. You can literally become a...

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Connecting with Ourselves

coaching mindset Jun 28, 2020

Are you feeling more introspective than usual these days?

It’s been said in various places, including social media, that the COVID-19 pandemic is making us all take stock of our lives, both individually and as a society. For many of us, it’s forced us to slow down the frenetic activity that we pack into our days. Not being able to gather together with our friends and extended families has given us extra time to re-connect with ourselves (whether we wanted to or not!)

For some, this has been a welcome opportunity to go inward, and to really ponder whether we like the trajectory we are on. I’ve heard a number of people say they want to make changes going forward – some minor, but some quite significant.

Spending more time at home is leading some to rediscover the joy of home-cooked meals eaten together as a family. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a few new bakeries open up when all this is over, if the amazing photos of sourdough bread, cakes, pies and...

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Moving Forward - Safely

mindset Jun 22, 2020

In most jurisdictions in North America, we are slowly moving towards re-opening our economy and our society in the new COVID-19 reality.

Not all of us will react in the same way in response to these changes, and not all of us will welcome the changes.

Here are my thoughts on how we can enjoy the additional freedom we now have, while remaining respectful of our fellow citizens.

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The Sound of Silence

communication mindset Jun 15, 2020

Sometimes the best way to connect is to just SHUT UP.

I'm serious.

We love to talk. We hate long pauses in conversations, and we're addicted to commenting on social media.

But that very tendency can be our worst enemy when it comes to understanding others, and being understood.

In these days of #blacklivesmatter and the fight against systemic racism and white privilege, it's absolutely critical that we learn how not to widen the divide between us, but rather, how to truly connect and engage in REAL dialogue and communication.

In this week's vlog, I explain how we can take the first steps in that process.

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The Different Ways We Crave Connection

mindset Jun 08, 2020

Introverts and Extroverts are coping in very different ways (and to very different degrees) with our forced semi-isolation due to COVID-19.

It's probably fair to say the Introverts are having a much easier ride than the Extroverts.

In today's VLOG, I share my thoughts on why that might be, and how we can help each other to get through this time on a more even keel.

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Being Authentic When It's Uncomfortable

mindset Jun 01, 2020

It can be frightening or disconcerting to speak out on a controversial topic, or in a situation where you've never let your true opinions be known previously.

But sometimes speaking out is not only the right thing to do, but also the path to inner peace.

If we believe one way, but let others think we feel differently (or even that we don't have an opinion one way or the other), we will always have to deal with a certain degree of inner turmoil.

Let your authentic voice be heard - be congruent with your beliefs and values.

Your life will be so much better for it.

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