I Am Breathing

be less stressed Aug 16, 2021


I Am Breathing 

August 16, 2021

I Am Breathing ---

  • 7 deep diaphragmatic breaths;
  • 7 specific times each day;
  • 7 days a week.

This is my Keep It Super Simple, 7x 7x 7  Formula for engaging the Relaxation Response and escaping the Fight or Flight Response. As we know, the Fight or Flight Response is hard-wired and automatic in all of us -- it it triggered in our autonomic nervous system. More importantly, we have a choice -- we can use deep diaphragmatic breathing to take back control. We can train our mind-body to relax. The value in the 7x 7x 7 Formula is that we are training, in a very disciplined way, to know what it feels like to relax our muscles and clear our mind. 

As crazy a ride as 2020 was, this summer of 2021 is an even wilder ride -- at least for me!  I put some major lifestyle changes into motion and then other events with family, friends and pets added to my personal and professional challenges. WOW! I am practicing what I coach in my stress...

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June 11, 2021


Truth: I got side-tracked. I started this Blog, "Know Thyself", in May. Let's just say this Blog has  been marinating -- as I was living this maxim and coaching friends and clients on this very theme. Yes, my writing got side-tracked by my coaching. While I am a planful person and almost always meet my deadlines, like a monthly Blog, I  stayed true to my Purpose -- coaching -- and that is exactly the value of knowing your Purpose. One never has to apologize for living their Purpose -- and that feels good to me. 

Then my writing was further side-tracked by my incorrigible tendency to do the research behind the quotes I feature in my Blogs and FB posts.  Was "Know Thyself" first written by Plato, or Socrates, or by  one of the Greek Seven Sages, including Thales, Solon, Chamaleon and Chilon, or by the legendary Oracle of Delphi, Pythia, dating back to the 8th century B.C.? Or does "Know Thyself" date back even...

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A Coaching Framework for Your Hero's Journey


A Coaching Framework for Your Hero's Journey  
April 22, 2021

I sincerely believe we are all heroes in our unique Hero's Journey.  And the Hero's Journey does not, typically, start at the peak -- it starts somewhere in darkness, with challenges, and with a sense that there is more -- more potential and possibilities -- more we can contribute to ourselves, our family, our relationships, our community, and to the bigger issues confronting our world.  

Joseph Campbell is the authority and famous author of The Power of Myth, The Hero's Journey: Joseph Campbell on His Life & Work, and many other books and documentaries. Here is what he has to say about the hero's path: 

We have not even to risk the adventure alone
for the heroes of all time have gone before us. 
The labyrinth is thoroughly known...
we have only to follow the thread of the hero path.
And where we had thought to find an abomination
we shall find a God.

And where we had thought...

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Always Do Your Best

Always Do Your Best 

March 29, 2021

We are continuing our journey to explore the deep meaning of Don Miguel Ruiz’s The Four Agreements and the path to personal freedom. 

I like to transform The Four Agreements into a personal statement, creating a prayer which explicitly incorporates freedom and a positive intention. 

  1. May I Be Impeccable with My Word.
  2. May I Be Free from Taking Anything Personally.
  3. May I Be Free from Making Assumptions.
  4. May I Always Do My Best.

This month we dive deeper into The Fourth Agreement: May I Always Do My Best.

As Ruiz writes: 

“The first three agreements will only work if you do your best. Don’t expect you will always be impeccable with your word. Your routine habits are too strong and firmly rooted in your mind. But you can do your best. Don’t expect that you will never take anything personally; just do your best. Don’t expect that you will never make another assumption, but you can certainly...

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Don't Take Anything Personally

be happy now Feb 17, 2021


Don't Take Anything Personally

February 17, 2021

We are continuing our journey to explore the deep meaning of Don Miguel Ruiz’s The Four Agreements and the path to personal freedom. 

I like to transform The Four Agreements into a personal statement using the word “I”, creating a prayer which explicitly incorporates freedom and a positive intention. What I say:   

  1. May I Be Impeccable with My Word.
  2. May I Be Free from Taking Anything Personally.
  3. May I Be Free from Making Assumptions.
  4. May I Always Do My Best.

This month we dive deeper into The Second Agreement: May I Be Free from Taking Anything Personally. As Ruiz writes: 

"Nothing other people do is because of you. 
It is because of themselves.
All people live in their own dream, in their own mind; 
they are in a completely different world from the one we live in."  

What other people say is more about them. Try saying this out loud: May I be free from taking anything...

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Be Impeccable with Your Word

be happy now Jan 20, 2021


Be Impeccable with Your Word

January 19, 2021

In this New Year 2021, I have been reflecting on the themes of transformation and freedom. Reflecting on how much I have learned and changed in the past 10 years -- and how much more I have yet to learn. 

There were several conversations with friends over the holidays which brought me back to the wisdom of don Miguel Ruiz’s internationally acclaimed book, “The Four Agreements.”  I love the exquisite simplicity of this book which I read many years ago and has a headline  “A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom. The Four Agreements are: 

  1. The First Agreement: Be Impeccable with Your Word.
  2. The Second Agreement: Don't Take Anything Personally.
  3. The Third Agreement: Don't Make Assumptions.
  4. The Fourth Agreement: Always Do Your Best. 

Many of you may have read this book. Perhaps you are like me – I savor revisiting this book every so often and refreshing and relearning the...

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On Joy and Sorrow

be happy now Dec 13, 2020


On Joy and Sorrow

December 13, 2020


Last month we delved deep into the "Heartset of Gratitude." I trust and know from your emails, we are all working on expanding our heartset of gratitude in ways that fit our journey. I believe as our gratitude grows, it gives rise to joy. I dearly want to close this last Blog of 2020 on the upbeat theme of Joy. 

However, there is a dissonance that must also be acknowledged. The year 2020 -- a year defined by the COVID-19 Pandemic, a Stress Epidemic, and Emotional Contagion -- is a year filled with challenges, hardship, loss and sorrow. The loss of loved ones, of free time, of hugs, of financial security, and on and on, is very real. It can be frightening. It is certainly humbling. I see and feel the pain.  

I asked myself how does one reconcile Joy and Sorrow? I turned to Kahlil Gibran's masterpiece, The Prophet, for wisdom. What follows is an excerpt from the chapter, "On Joy and Sorrow:"


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The Heartset of Gratitude

be happy now Nov 29, 2020


The Heartset of Gratitude 

November 29, 2020

I look forward to this November Blog on gratitude every year. Writing on gratitude brings a smile to my face because it is an opportunity to reflect and share how my gratitude journey has evolved and progressed over the past ten years. In this newsletter, we are going deeper and will explore, what I call, The Heartset of Gratitude. 

I choose the word “heartset” with intention – because gratitude is an emotion and comes from the heart. “Heartset” changes the focus from the mind and the ego to our heart. More importantly, “heartset” also brings to the fore our passion for how we are living our life – how we are seeing our own reality – as we move forward on our own unique journey.

As Ralph Waldo Emerson observed almost 200 years ago,  

“People only see what they are prepared to see.
If you look for what is good and what you can be grateful for,

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Fierce Focus



October 30, 2020


There are 62 days left in 2020. That is just about the amount of time we need to change a habit! We used to think it took 21 days to create a new habit. More recent research suggests it takes 66 days before a new behavior becomes automatic. Let's start Now! 

What is your focus to close out the year? How do you want to remember 2020? What can you do -- what is under your control  -- what will you choose to do? 

Let us each decide from our unique perspective and circumstance.  When we Fiercely Focus -- we can do anything! 

Indeed, this is One Big Decision.

Mary Oliver's poem, "The Summer Day," puts our decision in high relief: 

"Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean --
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down -  who is gazing around...

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Honoring Courage


Honoring Courage

October 9, 2020

In this October Blog, I feel strongly it is important to speak out and honor our collective struggles and honor courage in facing the unprecedented challenges of this 2020 year of pandemic. 

Initially, I had a very different message in mind … something like Fierce Focus, with an eye to closing the year strong. Honoring Courage is the message that sang to my heart. May it uplift and inspire you – and support you in moving forward. 

Our focus in this newsletter is on courage -- acts of courage to face our fears and move forward in the midst of uncertainty and during what can appear, at times, to be a chaotic landscape. 

I want to start with a solemn prayer and tribute to the 211,844 people in the USA and the 1,056,493 people worldwide who passed over this year after a struggle with COVID 19. (Data from Johns Hopkin’s University as of October 8th.) This is a personal and universally shared tragedy.  I mourn...

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