September 25, 2013


READY... “It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.”  ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

AIM…  “Why can’t you just listen to me?”  Ugh!  It’s extremely frustrating to me when my children do not listen when told to do something.  Most days I just feel like the only thing coming out of my mouth is the droning sound of the teacher in Charlie Brown comics, “Whaa – Whaah,  Whaa – Whaah – Whaah.”  (I know you just sounded that out so you could recall the voice yourself.  LOL!)  But seriously, I just want my words to be heard and acknowledged.

It is just as frustrating, if not moreso, when adults don’t listen.  Humans have an innate need to be heard; whether it is to voice an opinion or to provide instruction. However, the receiver of that information must decide to hear what you are saying. Your need to be heard will never override a person’s decision to hear what you are saying. After all, we can choose to listen to music with explicit lyrics, or we can choose not to listen to our co-workers gossip.  We can choose to listen to the sounds of birds singing in the morning, or we can choose not to listen to the cricket chirping in the corner of the basement.  Listening can be good and listening can be, well, not so great.  What we do with what we hear makes all the difference too.

So, are you a good listener?  When having conversation with another person, do you look him in the eye?  Are you engaged in the details of her story or do you check out and look around the room?  If you desire to be heard when you speak, I urge you to become a good listener to others.  Perhaps you will find they will return the favor. (Now, how can I convince my kids to LISTEN to my advice??)

FIRE!  Today, instead of checking your email, texts or Facebook updates on your smart phone, give your friends, family members and colleagues your full and undivided attention.  You’ll be surprised at the positive connections made through this simple act of respect and good listening skills.

Be Excellent!

September 3, 2013

The Pain of Change

READY  "There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that's your own self.” ~Aldous Huxley

AIM…  Until the pain of change is greater than the pain of staying the same, people will choose to do what they know.  Sigh.  I know.  I have realized that I am no longer a spring chicken.  I’m starting to feel my season in life: emotionally, physically and financially.  I guess that means I need to make some changes in order to feel differently. 

Change is hard, though.  I don’t know about you, but I like it when I feel comfortable with my life, my routine, and my environment.  I don’t like it when my schedule gets shaken and stirred.  However, I do know, that when my life starts turning upside down, it’s time to embrace the new change that’s about to happen.  Yes, this mid-life mama has got to take time to care for herself and tackle some of these necessary changes head on.  What are you facing in your life that is pushing you to embrace a new change?

As we step out of our comfort zones to grab ahold of our new changes, remember it’s often helpful to enlist a friend who wants to change too.  Sure, it’s easy to tell yourself you are going to make the necessary changes to move ahead, but the accountability of another partner might be just the key to push you into making the next step forward and maintaining your commitment. So how ‘bout it?  Let’s stop procrastinating and start today making a baby step in the right direction for the positive changes we need in our lives.

FIRE!  Ask a trusted friend to help you start, and maintain, momentum toward achieving a new goal in your life.  Give her permission to ask you regularly about your progress.  Whether it’s making a career change, adjusting your budget, starting an exercise program or simply taking time each day just for yourself, you are worth every step that places you that much closer to victory.

Be Excellent!