|Here’s what I like about you.|
(It’s a long list, so settle in.)
You can do impossible things.
You prove that every day.
You’ve suffered setbacks
in your career and relationships
and learned how to course correct
and declare a do-over.
You’ve experienced unimaginable losses
and a devastating amount of shame.
You’ve lost a parent, a child,
a sibling, a spouse,
a friend, a pet,
or they’ve lost their way,
and somehow you’ve
found the faith to love
and offer support again.
You have taken risks
that nearly broke you
and still struggle with
for not knowing better.
You’ve been misunderstood
and yet you remain
open to what’s possible
even when it requires you
to risk it all again.
You do the necessary hard work.
You go in early,
and shovel snow
even when you know
no one else will attempt
to venture out.
You’ve bought more self-improvement courses
than you’ll ever complete,
but you don’t let this stop you
from seizing new opportunities
to invest in yourself
and build a better world.
Your body has betrayed you.
You may have experienced
a threat to your health
that brought you face to face
with your own mortality.
You’re getting older in spite of
your ageless attitude,
and inimitable shoe collection.
Somewhere along the line you started
working overtime instead of working out.
You occasionally overindulge
and binge watch entire seasons
of your favorite shows
all in one weekend
when you could be
clearing out the clutter,
attending a CrossFit class,
or preparing healthy meals
for the upcoming week.
But you believe Mondays
are like New Year’s Day,
so you begin again
and vow to do better.
You worry about the world
going to hell in a hand basket
and secretly suspect it’s
weapons of mass distraction
that will ultimately lead to our undoing.
You fear that folks have forgotten
how to talk to each other,
think for themselves,
follow their guidance,
or stand up for what they believe in.
So you make sure to vote
even though you know
your neighbor will vote differently.
You smile at strangers even though
they may interpret this small
act of kindness as stalking,
and you speak your truth
even if your voice shakes.
You are brave when bravery is required.
You are resilient even when you are bone tired.
You weave a spell with words that soothe the soul.
And you sing despite your reputation
for making up your own lyrics.
You are more than the sum of your parts –
even though all your parts are perfect in their imperfection.
You are always evolving.
You are still learning.
And so you remain a mystery –
even to yourself.
You see life differently.
You are wildly creative
which makes you
You hug trees,
flirt with babies,
let your dog occupy
the choicest spot on your bed,
let your cat commandeer your computer
(to allegedly manage her Instagram account),
and let baby goats jump on you during yoga.
You orchestrate the elements,
bend time, and defy gravity.
You feel deeply so you hurt easily.
You know intuitively so you act instinctively.
You keep these gifts hidden so you can
blend in and not out yourself as
the force of nature that you are.
Your curiosity keeps you questioning the status quo.
Your attraction to the extraordinary
summons you to sacred sites.
Your generosity makes you magnetic.
Your vulnerability makes you irresistible.
Your dancing makes you legendary.
Your sense of humor makes you the life of the party…
should you ever stray from the sanctuary
of your studio, library, garden, or kitchen.
You bloom where you are planted.
You are a sensual creature who insists on honesty
wherever you can find it.
You are a meaning maker
with an appetite for adventure.
You are a citizen of the world,
a renegade, a revolutionary,
a rebel with a most compelling cause.
You are a visionary, a shapeshifter, a truth teller,
a way shower, and a light worker.
You are grounded in this world
but not exactly of it.
You are a Spark of the Divine.
Made up of stardust and moonbeams, you are.
You continue to surprise and delight.
Because of that, I’m all in.
I’m devoted to helping you get
from where you are now to where you want to go.
Because I want more for you than you dare to want for yourself.
And partnering with people I adore as much as I do you
is what I’m most grateful for thisThanksgiving.
THE “HOLIDAZE” ARE HERE!!
If you are triggered just hearing those words,
then it’s time to tap!
EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) can help you
not simply survive this season,
but quite possibly thrive!
Join me for a FREE tapping session on Friday, November 26th.
We’ll tap at 3pm and 7pm EST.
Or, if you’re super stressed, tap twice!
Register here to get the Zoom link.
You’ll get my
“Top 10 Tension Tackling Tunes to Keep You Humming
Through the Holidays”
just for registering.
April can be a very taxing time of year in the US.
Whether you pay taxes quarterly or yearly, get money back or have to pay money in, there is a general reckoning that always leaves me feeling, well, taxed.
I know it doesn’t have to be that way.
Yet once the dreadful day has come and gone, taking a good chunk of change with it, I forget how urgent and uncomfortable it is to account for it all.
This year I decided to take matters into my own hands. And since writing is what I generally do with my hands, I’m writing my way to a new, empowering money story.
I invite you to do the same.
Last month I participated in an online Millionaire Mindset Challenge that was nothing short of miraculous. The energy of the creative community was contagious, the possibilities endless, and the miracles multiplied by our collective witnessing of them.
So many of my friends asked me about it that I decided to create my own version of it called Pennies From Heaven.
I’m changing up the rules a bit to give you a little more time to ponder your potential and adding a few Angel Investors to guide you to your most magnificent manifestations.
Because your mind can’t distinguish between what’s real and what’s vividly imagined, you’re going to conjure up the most creative scenarios you can for experiencing the kind of wealth and abundance you’ve only dreamed about thus far.
Whether you like it or not, you are experiencing the precise level of abundance you can comfortably handle at the moment. What??? Can that be true?
Let me just speculate and suggest you may have a few money hang-ups that are getting in the way of experiencing the kind of wealth and abundance you desire.
Whether these be unspoken vows, limiting beliefs, or a general distrust that the Universe is conspiring on your behalf, it might be worth looking at your money story and see if you can allow yourself to play your way to prosperity.
“Who’s got time for fun and games?” you ask.
Well, I hope you do! I, for one, could definitely use a little more levity in my life.
After suffering in silence and solitude for decades, I’ve discovered the key to my success is surrounding myself with wise and witty friends who are curious, open to new experiences, and can see things from a different perspective than I can. If I’m going to tackle a touch topic like money, I’d prefer to do it with my tribe.
Consider this your invitation to hop on board the Pennies From Heaven money miracle manifestation train. Even if no actual money shows up during the game, the insights you gain into your money story will set the stage for future windfalls.
Look at it this way. If you were expecting a baby, pursuing a degree, directing a movie, or taking a vacation, you’d prepare for it, right? You’d plan for a nursery, register for classes, hire some actors, or make travel arrangements.
The same applies to increasing your income. You may say you want more money, but if you can’t manage what you have now, how will you successfully manage more?
Pennies From Heaven is your practice field.
If you’d like to play along, just write “Show Me the Money!” in the comments below. The game will be played through our Pennies From Heaven Facebook group, so if you’re on Facebook, just ask to join the group and I’ll add you.
If you’ve already mastered money and want to look at relationships, health, or any other area of your life, the same rules of the game apply. I’d love for you to join me and play your way to whatever you most desire.
Love is in the air.
At least that’s what card companies, chocolate factories, and flower shops would have us believe around this time of year.
Of all things to believe in, love is certainly a noble and worthy cause.
As someone who has never been married and spent my fair share of Valentine’s Days celebrating the unconditional love of my dogs, I could give you a million reasons why romantic love is overrated.
But I won’t.
Because as cliche as it sounds, love makes the world go around.
The problem is not with love.
It’s with our limited view of what it should look like, feel like, or how and when it should show up in our lives.
If you are like me and Hozier, “I fall in love just a little, oh a little bit, every day with someone new.” Or something.
Don’t get me wrong. I love the one I am with. Because of that, my cup runneth over with love..
So I am looking to fall in love just a little bit every day with someone new because there are so many people in need of love. No one may have noticed the tiny tears in a person’s heart. No one may have noticed the way a person is lovable, adorable, vulnerable, creative, generous, surprising, kind, or appears to be broken.
When I do, I let my love open the door.
Whether that be through a smile, a reassuring word, a gentle touch, or just keeping my mouth shut when I might be tempted to criticize or judge. Often times these things can mean more than diamonds, flowers, candy, or over-the-top declarations of love.
And I don’t limit myself to people.
I especially love trees and have no shame in wrapping my arms around their trunks whenever I have the chance.
And, oh, I do love my animals.
I love ideas.
I love art and music and poetry and delicious food.
I love to sleep.
I love my snow pants because they allow me to be warm and comfy in winter weather. And they create a softer landing when I fall off my skis.
I love creating something out of nothing and transforming the ordinary into the extraordinary.
None of that can happen without love.
So I will continue to be a hopeful romantic and believe in love and all the ways it dares to shows up in the world against all odds.
And I will send a whole heart full of love to you.
P.S. I would love to know what you love and what songs about love you love. Please add your playlist of love songs in the comments below.
Our Tapping Into Your Wellpower Retreat is just 9 days away! I’m so excited to be spending a day at the Rickert Lodge in Bellevue with such fabulous new friends.
It takes courage to commit to spending a day doing a deep dive into those areas where most people are content to stay where it’s numbingly comfortable.
Up until now, I’ve attended retreats. Lots of them. This time I’ll be leading one.
It’s a gigantic leap but one I’ve been preparing for all summer. I’m thrilled to put my spin on the lessons I’ve learned from hanging out with some of the best teachers in some the world’s most beautiful places.
I have grand plans to host future retreats in the places dearest to my heart like Santa Fe, St. George, and Monterey. But for my first go round, it makes sense to stay local and start small. I’ll get through 1 day and work my way up to a week.
I couldn’t ask for a lovelier setting than the Rickert Lodge in Bellevue, Iowa. It’s close to home but far enough away from my normal work environment that it feels like a get-away.
The biggest challenge has been to pick just one theme for the day. I remind myself it has taken me a lifetime to integrate the various teachings and experiences I’ve had. As tempted as I may be to throw a little bit of a lot of things into the ring, the last thing I want to do is overwhelm someone coming to me in search of tranquility.
So I will teach something I love (tapping/EFT) that I know can make a profound difference in the lives of others in a very short time.
Today I said to a co-worker, “This is what it feels like to realize a dream.”
And remarkably it feels like another day in paradise. A day where dozens of creative decisions and compromises must be made, people surprise or delight me, others challenge me, and the dogs still demand a walk. (Because they know the walk puts it all in perspective.)
This is the beauty of stepping into your well of power and owning your throne. It forces you to be a better version of yourself. Putting together this retreat has proven the Goethe quote to be true.
“The moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. Whatever you think you can do, or believe you can do, begin it. Action has magic, power and grace.”
All kinds of things came into alignment as soon as I committed to hold the retreat. I have become more of a business person than I ever thought possible for a creatively quirky individual. Incredibly, I now have a YouTube channel, an active Instagram account, and have done several FB Live segments.
Upleveling is oddly disorienting until you realize this is what you were born to do. Then you understand that there really are no mistakes, just learning opportunities, and no matter how steep the learning curve, what’s on the other side is usually worth it.
Doing the necessary hard work is really the only way to appreciate the magnitude of what you are able to manifest.
There is still time for you to join me at the retreat. We have the perfect size group for this kind of transformational work (20 people), but there is always room for you if this speaks to your heart.
Contact me if you are interested in attending or would like to host an event of your own and need a little nudge to make it happen. Click on the Retreat tab above for all the details.
Happy Labor Day, my friends!
Since our Get Stuff Done & Have Fun 21 Day Challenge ended in August, I thought we needed a new theme for September.
I got the idea of Cease Fire September from none other than our Get Stuff Done & Have Fun winner, Gilbert Higuera.
Like Gilbert, I’ve noticed we can all be a little critical of ourselves (and others) when things do not go as planned. So instead of bashing, trashing, guilting, or goading ourselves into submission or compliance, I say we call a cease fire and stop with the incessant shoulda, woulda, coulda’s.
Let’s just let things be as they are for the moment. No judgments.
Think neither good nor bad.
It is what it is.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t try your darnedest to change things or make things better. It just means that when change doesn’t happen quickly or easily or at all like you’ve planned, you don’t ridicule yourself for trying.
In my experience things seldom go the way I think they will or they should or I would like them to.
Sometimes they go even better!
But often times it’s just another day in paradise where I get to learn something new. Like how not to do something. Or how to tweak something just a smidge so it will work better next time.
Freaking out or abandoning the entire project does not contribute to the greater good. Mine or any one else’s. It just gives me further “proof” of my ineptitude at the expense of the innovative or creative thinking that prompted the idea in the first place.
Few things work right out of the gate. Despite what our culture tells us, overnight successes are usually years in the making.
I learn best by practicing and I practice best when I have partners. Since some of you have already been Getting Stuff Done & Having Fun with me in August, I thought you might want to continue on this journey in September with a new challenge.
If you haven’t done a challenge with me before, now is the time to start! You can participate as much or as little as you like.
The best way to do this is to join our Facebook group – Get Stuff Done & Have Fun. If you don’t use Facebook, then just follow along here or on Instagram at pjplautz.
I like to use a catchy phrase so I remember to practice what I preach at the precise moment I’m about to forget it. Something like, “Think twice and be nice,” might work for this month.
What do you think?
Share the ways you are practicing a little kindness, self-compassion, or neutrality in the comments below.
PS – The Tapping Into Your Wellpower Retreat is just 19 days away. If you want to get in on this amazing day away, you still have time. You can even get in on the Early Bird Pricing until September 8th. (We know you are busy and may have forgotten to register by September 1, so we are extending a grace period for registering at the special price through this Friday, September 8th. Call 1-888-336-3907 to register for #187799 or register online at www.eicc.edu/continuing-education/register/). If you want to know more about the retreat, click on the Tapping Into Your Wellpower Retreat tab at the top of the page.
From fireworks to parades to hot dogs, apple pie, and baseball, many Americans will find a way in the next couple of days to celebrate the freedom this country was founded upon.
With the need to be free hardwired into our operating systems, it’s the rare person who willingly gives up that freedom without a compelling reason. Yet, to achieve almost anything worthwhile, sacrifice is usually required. At the very least, discipline is demanded.
Think about the last thing you wanted to learn, do, or achieve that you knew nothing about. Chances are you did not just do it and become an instant expert.
Say you want to get in shape to run a 5k race in October. If you’ve never run anything but late, then you’ll need a strategy, a training schedule, some dietary guidelines, and basic structure in order for your plan to succeed.
Too often we’re seduced by the idea of easy.
Now I’m all for things being easy, but the things that really matter usually do so because of the time, effort, and discipline required to call forth our commitment and courage. When we can conjure up those characteristics, then unlikely allies and opportunities also arise and ignite a spark we may not have even known was in us.
This summer and fall I am taking on a couple of things are way beyond my skill set. I’m making a video series called Sunday Summer Stretch Series (watch today’s episode here) and hosting a retreat in September called Tapping Into Your Wellpower. (Watch for details posted here this week.)
I refuse to let the fact that I currently don’t have the expertise I would prefer to have to boldly go where I have not gone before stop me from heading in that direction. I have traveled enough to know there will be rest stops, restaurants, and resources along the way. Consequently, I trust I will be okay.
If I let the reluctance to start because I have no guarantees I will succeed stop me, I’d never get anywhere. And, oh, the places I would like to go!!
To me freedom is always hard won. While I’ve never fought for my country as some of you have, I fight daily for my dreams and the privilege to help you realize yours as well.
I’d love to hear how you are not just celebrating your freedom, but finding it through discipline and exercising it by stretching your skill set this summer.
Tell us all about it in the comments below. (Accountability does wonders!)
Following the plea from the David Loggins song, I just got back from 4 days in Boston.
I would not recommend it as a spring break destination since the day before I arrived the snow, rain, ice, and wind did, leaving me in a bit of a panic as to whether I would actually make it there or not.
The plan was to attend an Ignite Your Power conference with Margaret Lynch. I was the usual mix of excited/terrified, so when Mother Nature unleashed the blizzard that looked like it would throw a wrench in my plans, I was secretly relieved to let her call the shots and let me off the hook.
But then came the video from Margaret on Tuesday night saying all systems were go and Boston would be ready to receive us on Wednesday. So much for sabotaging my self-development plans.
Now there was no excuse not to pack my bags and conjure up the courage required to head into 3-days of intense personal development work.
I have spent my whole life attending personal growth workshops. Every “vacation” is really me heading somewhere to learn something with a bunch of other people who have similar interests.
While friends and co-workers talk about their unforgettable time in Bermuda, Jamaica, or Cabo, I talk about my adventures in forgiveness, opening my heart, and getting in touch with my lower chakras.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my “vacations”. I have met some of the coolest people on the planet just by being brave enough to go where they are gathered.
But initially walking alone into a room of over 400 people I don’t know catapults me so far out of my comfort zone I’m amazed I can function. I never get over the feeling that I could be the last one picked for the popular team.
So I breathe. And now I tap because tapping (or EFT) is the reason I am at this particular event.
I remind myself I belong here. These are my peeps. This is my tribe.
I remind myself there are others who feel exactly the way I do.
So I take a seat next to someone and introduce myself. And in a few days my world doubles in size.
Who knew the exact right people would be sitting next to me? Who knew they would share my same fears, challenges, joys, and dreams? Who knew that allowing myself to be uncomfortable for the better part of 4 days would yield such immediate and impressive results?
That’s why I went. That’s why I continue to put myself out there over and over and over again.
Because try as I might to go it alone, I can’t.
I need support in order to do cutting edge work.
I need mentors to model success.
I need coaches to hold me accountable.
I need clients to experience the transformative power of what I do.
I need an expanding group of friends from around the globe to help me gain the perspective only they can provide.
And I need water taxis and drivers with that unmistakable east coast accent to shuttle me back and forth to the city and the airport and tell me stories about Boston so that when I get home, I can bring these stories back to you.
What about you? What do you do that leaves you feeling alternately exhilarated and exhausted, excited and anxious, and alive and exquisitely vulnerable? What do you need to continually coax your life forward?
I’d love for you to share your thoughts in the comments below.
I ended 2016 very differently than I have most other years. Instead of going quietly into the New Year with as little fanfare as possible, I experienced a media blitz that had me working harder on my time off than I had at any other time throughout the year.
It was part of my whole alphabet plan to get from Here to the New Year in Good Cheer. It also allowed me to end 2016’s self-titled “Stretch Year” strong by catapulting me out of my comfort zone and consistently into the public arena.
Instead of building on this momentum and jockeying for position in the onslaught of self-improvement programs that January brings about, I retreated. In order to hear the still, small voice among all the shoulding and shouting, I had to get quiet.
As a college administrator, January rivals August as a “don’t mess with me” month. At least not until the students are registered, the faculty is prepped, the staff is informed, and we all get through the first few weeks of classes.
So I’ve resisted the urge to jump into every exciting new program that arrives in my Inbox as well as the temptation to launch my own signature program. It’s not as easy as it sounds.
There is a lot of buzz at the beginning of a New Year. It’s an excellent time to tap into the energy of a fresh start, a new beginning, a clean slate. As much as I wanted to ride the wave and see how far it would take me, I was starting to feel a bit frazzled.
So I asked myself, “What’s the workable plan for now? What’s the next right step to move my life forward at a sustainable rate?”
The answer? Plan my work and work my plan. This, of course, calls for a fabulous planner!
Last year I used Danielle LaPorte’s daily planner, which piqued my interest in planners. This year I decided to try out her weekly planner. Even though this planner works brilliantly for my creatively quirky mind, I couldn’t help but wonder, “Are there other planners out there I might also love?”
Oh yeah. Being organized is big business.
I researched and ordered a few planners that made the top 10 lists. One was the Inkwell 2017 planner. This could possibly be my new favorite planner because of all the fun extras like a habit tracker, mission board, lots of space for notes, colorful tabs, and some pockets in the back to store stuff.
The other was Nourished – the daily planner for a well-fed life. I loved the concept and it seemed like the perfect planner to help me be more deliberate and intentional with my meal planning and fitness tracking. It just arrived over the weekend, so I haven’t worked with it too much yet.
As much as I love each of these planners and are impressed by the details that went into their design, ultimately I have to customize them so they track what I deem important. I need a place to ask the clarifying questions on a daily basis that are just as important to me as knowing where I need to be at what time.
For example, every morning it helps me to ask:
- What is this day about?
- What wants to come forward?
- What needs to get done?
- How do I want to feel?
- What am I willing to do to feel that way?
Every evening it helps me to figure out:
- Where was the magic hiding?
- Where did I get tripped up, lose focus, fall out of integrity, or tell myself something that wasn’t true?
- What was lost?
- What was found?
- What were the HappyThankYouMorePlease moments?
- What brilliant ideas surfaced?
- What thoughts consistently hound me?
- What do I need to sleep on and hope to gain clarity on for tomorrow?
- Where did I excel?
- Where can I improve?
The answers to these questions dictate my actions and determine what makes it on the next day’s agenda.
What about you? How much attention do you pay to your day and how does this attention or lack of attention affect your ability to achieve what you want to achieve?
In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. you may want to craft your own “I Have a Dream” speech today. Even if you don’t have any inkling as to how to achieve it or the specifics of what you truly want, just start by stating what you believe is possible. You don’t have to deliver it to anyone else. This is mainly to remind you of what matters and why.
Or, if you are avoiding resolutions or self-reflection the way year-round exercisers avoid the gym until February, that’s okay. Just breathe in, breathe out, and go about your business. Let the dream, the purpose, or the vision find you.
One of my favorite mantras is, “What you seek is also seeking you.” Somehow the timing is always perfect. Trust wherever you are is where you need to be for now.
You’ve got a whole year ahead of you. Plan accordingly.*
I’d love for you to share your favorite planners and any tips or tricks for making 2017 your best one yet in the comments below.
*P.S. – There will no doubt be surprises and things you didn’t see coming in the year ahead. Don’t forget to leave some room for the unexpected in your grand plan. Keeps it interesting!
When I lived in Santa Fe, I used to housesit and dogsit for people. When a friend’s mother passed away, she asked if I would stay at her mother’s house until she and her sister decided what to do with it.
This was no ordinary house. This was a gorgeous ranch with a guest house in one of my favorite places on earth. I was sure everyone was mistaken and I was really the one who had died because this was my idea of heaven. The days I got to spend in that home among so many beautiful things were unforgettable.
My friend’s mother was a remarkable woman who had crafted an astonishingly elegant life for herself and the friends, family, horses, and canines that kept her company.
One evening as I sat on the porch watching a spectacular sunset the idea occurred to me that I couldn’t hang on to this place or this experience any more than my friend’s mother could. The only thing I could do was fully appreciate the time I had there.
This is why I’m so protective of this time at the end of the year and seem obsessed with making sense of the year coming to a close. I’m acutely aware that, as the classic Seals and Croft song goes, “We may never pass this way again.”
So I want to make sure I’m present for it. That I don’t rush through it in my desire to move on to bigger, better, faster, or flashier. I want to take my time and give it the attention a full year of my life deserves. I hope you’ll do the same with yours.
With that said, I’ll take you through the rest of the Year in Review template and tomorrow I’ll give you a different one to look at the year ahead.
What were the products that rocked your world? Every year there is at least one thing I wonder how I ever lived without. Usually it’s an upgrade or improvement to something I use every day. It could be as simple as a new electric toothbrush, slim velvet hangers, a new skincare product, or an app that reminds me to meditate, move, or feed the fish. What are those things for you?
Who were the people who rocked your world? Just as there are products you can’t live without, there are people who make it all worthwhile. It could be your yoga teacher, your rabbi, a rock star, a writer, your next door neighbor, Alexander Hamilton, or the dog-treat-dispensing bank teller. I was inspired by so many people that this will have to be a separate blog post for me.
What books, blogs, movies, music, concerts, conversations, or workshop/seminars/coaching programs/retreats changed the way you think and feel? The thing I like to remember is I am only one thought away from a new perspective and a few dance moves or dog walk away from a better mood. As much as I like to think about things, I don’t act on them until I feel something. Often times I need a nudge in the form of reading material, listening material, phoning a friend, or giving in to the unbridled enthusiasm of two dogs who think they are going for a w-a-l-k.
How did your relationships change or shift this year? Did you get engaged, married, divorced, have a baby, lose a loved one, start a business, hire a coach, fire someone, rekindle a romance, move to a new neighborhood, or retire from your job? When your circumstances change, usually your relations shift as well.
What health, fitness, food, or spiritual practices did you try, tweak, test out, or keep up this year? Maybe you took up archery or turned into a total foodie, much to your surprise and delight. Maybe you started a hip hop class or became a Buddhist. Maybe you did a 21-day cleanse or tried acupuncture. Or maybe you suffered a debilitating illness that turned your world upside down and forced you to do everything differently. How have these new practices defined you or allowed you to reinvent yourself?
What is the smallest change you made that had the biggest impact? Did you start meditating for 5 minutes in the morning or stop drinking soda? Did you start leaving love notes in your spouse’s lunchbox? Did you take up taekwondo with your kid? Did you give up lattes for Lent and never looked back?
And finally, what were your greatest contributions this year? Maybe you spent a Saturday afternoon being a bell-ringer for the Salvation Army. Maybe you took 3 carloads of career ready clothes to Dressed for Success. Maybe you sponsored a child, saved yourself and your children and left an abusive relationship, or fed some local families during the holidays. Whatever you did, make a note of it. It mattered.
Tomorrow I’ll look at what you want to call in for 2017. But for today, take your time and tell me about your year in the comments below.
This week might be one of my favorite weeks of the year. Not just because I work in education and get this week off, but also because it gives me some breathing space.
I look forward to this time all year to reflect on the lessons learned, experience gained, relationships rekindled or lost, and the unexpected surprises that buoyed my spirits or broke my heart.
Some of these things were in my control and many of them were not. Either way this year provided a continually expanding arena for me to rearrange my perception of my place in the universe.
In an effort to become more visible and accessible, I became aware of how small I’ve been playing for a long time and how safe it is to do so. The minute I risked becoming more visible and having an opinion, an agenda, or an attitude, I risked opening myself to judgment, criticism, and haters.
I can live with that. It appears to be the price of admission to a non-apologetic life.
What I can’t live with is being a writer and censoring myself so as not to offend or otherwise ruffle a few feathers. There were many things that had me worked up this year. It was also the year I embarked on an Integrity Cleanse so not writing about them was not possible.
As a writer, my job is to articulate the emotions underneath the issues so you can feel them in a way you may not have, left to your own devices.
I take this job very seriously. And though I don’t get paid to do it or enjoy celebrity status because of it, it’s the most rewarding thing I do. Because of you.
If reading makes us feel less alone in the world, then writing makes us feel more understood.
The greatest satisfaction I get from writing is knowing that some of you are reading this and thinking,”I know exactly what she’s talking about.” Especially when I describe the crazy stuff or make an obscure reference to something you thought you were the only one who remembered or had an experience of.
After a long day at work, I know I can retreat to my writing room and send something out into the world that will come back with a reassuring, “I hear you, honey. Welcome to my world.”
As I begin my week-long year in review, I want to start with saying thank you for being a consistent source of delight in my world and an incentive to keep pushing the envelope, expressing unspoken hopes and fears, and sprinkling a healthy dose of humor on ridiculous situations.
In between dog walks, reading, and savoring some quiet time at home, today I’m working on a few templates I’ll share with you tomorrow.
In the meantime, please share your highlights from 2016 in the comments below or email them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.