Take time for a respite

Yes, always.

I don’t follow this advice frequently enough.

But last weekend, I took off to the hills of Western Massachusetts and made time for some refreshment… with new people, new conversations, and a welcome opportunity to refine my own thinking with some like-minded folks.

Mary Catherine Bateson and Mel Buckholz, both 73 (I was in good company), were our leaders in conversation about the extended longevity afforded this generation of post 60 folks, and how we might productively use ourselves to both contribute AND feel worthy and satisfied.

Mary Catherine has written extensively about Adulthood II, and the Active Wisdom of these years and how one might “compose” a full life.  While of course, doing of what one loves.

Ahhh, yes.

It does take time.  Pulling together the perspectives of life past, naming and recombining your gifts,  exploring what really matters, and giving yourself permission to recreate yourself, is a worthy endeavor.

Personally,  I’m yet again going through the process of reconfiguring my life and “work” post a long transitionary period.  This is not the first time for me.  Getting bored, stuck or tired are the signals that it’s time once again to regroup.   It’s really satisfying to stop take a fresh look at one’s purpose and possibilities and get reenergized, particularly in the company of others. I look forward in the near future to introducing you to the “new me.”

For now, I invite you to take the time for this kind of respite and this kind of refreshment and to seek the outside perspectives you need.

CLICK HERE  to read more about  the services I offer as support for this reflective task.

REFRESH                REFRESH                    REFRESH

Take Time to “weigh” things properly

Life lessons come from unlikely places.  A Weight Watchers instructor taught me something 40+ years ago and I’ve never forgotten it.

canstockphoto5585250She taught me how not to “weigh.”  Her example related to the tough decisions about eating well that we all face.  Should we eat a piece of cake (candy, coke, second serving, etc. etc. etc.) or not?  On one side of the scale put ‘have the cake’.  On the other side of the scale, put ‘don’t have the cake’.  On that basis, having the cake wins.  The thought of being without cake is too painful, the cake very pleasurable. For that moment I want my cake.

However, she said we are improperly assigning what belongs on either side of the scale.  If you put having the cake on one side, and instead put achieving your goals and feeling good about yourself on the other side, you have a better chance of deciding in your long term best interest. When you factor in the bad feelings of guilt, self disappointment, and anger the moment I would  have that accompany eating the cake, you have a real downer.  Those feelings that I don’t really want to experience, do have weight.  I can feel the weight of them now.  Best I put them on the scale and factor them in properly.

Why do I bring this up? Continue reading

Take time to reflect on your “brand”

Who are you, anyway? What’s the total package? What would your friends say about you if asked those questions?  Let’s not assume that “branding” is just about business.   Who you are comprises what you do, what you say, how you look, how you parent, how you show up in good times and bad. It’s what people, including your children,  have learned to expect from you.  It’s the behaviorally expressed promise about what you stand for and the implied purpose for your being on the planet.

Whether you’ve ever thought about it or not, you have a brand,  and you are a brand. Others can see it clearly, or not so clearly.  The more clear it is, the more reassuring it is for others. They know what they can count on you for. Continue reading