"Tell me, what is it you will you do with your one wild and precious life?" ~Mary Oliver


"I Might Forget and Call You Joy!"

You know those things. The ones that hold you back? We ALL have them. Big. Small. Annoying. Even life-threatening for some. Of course, I'm no different. Precisely 33 years ago, I let go and faced mine. Addiction. Cunning. Baffling. Powerful! There's a big story here (the stuff that books are made of---stay tuned!). But, here's the back story/ upshot for starters:

I had a life that looked really great. Wonderful new husband. Great job I loved in a field that really mattered. Lived in a very cool, old "rowhouse" in a funky neighborhood (just the way I liked it). Even a puppy! 

But---and here's the kicker...

I couldn't feel the happiness. Something was missing. And there was a sticky, repetitive mantra in my head...which went like this...

"Where is the joy?" 

Now, fast forward 33 years. I'm in full-blown recovery. Reaping the rewards. Self discovery, claim, life, hope, serenity, promises...bunches and bunches of possibility and juiciness in every day. The terrain I now live in is super verdant, super rich, and incredibly laced with----you guessed it, JOY!

In fact---I've been known to give hand calligraphed stones (a hobby of mine) to strangers as random acts of kindness---with one word on them. JOY. They are, literally, scattered all over the globe---including on the southernmost tip of the Cape of Africa. 

And in fact---JOY has become my e-signature! Anyone who has written to me by email in the last several years has seen this. So much so that not only do I know where the joy IS, I celebrate it, am grateful for it, live it almost every day (even in the hard stuff---more about that later). And, as a coach, I even have the great, divine privilege of helping people access their very own flavor of joy. The joy that for many, feels missing. (Or, maybe they have intermittent dashes of it---but KNOW in their heart there is more!)

Get the cosmic joke? The girl who went from wondering "Where is the joy?" is now the holder of the joy, the speader of the joy, and even at risk of being mistaken for Joy!

These are the kind of bold, audacious breath-taking life changes and leaps I'm interested in! This is the life that is so, so, possible. Really, right here in this moment. For everyone, I believe. Really----everyone. (Some of the greatest joy has been accessed in surprising places---concentration camps, the lips of prisoners.) 

So this week, when a young woman I'd just met said what she did, you now understand. Life simply doesn't get better than this!

"I might forget and call you Joy!" 

p.s. Did I do ANY of this alone? Not for a minute. I'm surrounded by courageous people who showed up, loved me, supported me, shone the light for me, cheered me---the whole shabang. That's what WE do as humans---we care, struggle, fall down, get up, believe, have hope and approach each moment as the gift of life that it is. I'm thrilled to be one of those welcomers now. And for anyone who might be struggling, hurting, challenged, hitting the wall of their own personal "block" (be it alcohol, drugs, sex, gambling, spending, numbing, eating, trying too hard, working too much, caretaking without ceasing, looking good, endless fear----whatever!) just know three things. You're not alone. There are people waiting to help---you just have to ask. And...

Joy lives on the other side----and is closer than you think!!


Feast and Play

It's about SEEing.

Seeing life. All of life.

Without judgment. 

On my run this morn---beauty raw splayed death enjoyed nourishing. Fluffy downy fur of squirrel---so fauwny, gently moving in the morn's fresh breeze. The softness of body, still. The pavement its rest. The entrails so purely pinkish freshest red. The powerfully bold black, azure and white magpies purely the banquet table. Savoring. 

All of this true. 

All of this real.

All of this.

My mind wanted to categorize----"Oh, I thought it was so lovely, then realized!" And I knew better. It is all whole, real, present, alive, dead, rhythmic, cyclic. Needn't land into my mind's puny sorting categories of good and bad. Nice and awful. Way. Too. Small.

A mile going the other direction. A pair of tiny bunnies---teenagers I'm guessing. I almost didn't see the shadow of the small pine. Dusty greys. Ears sheer pink/white sun dashed. So still. About two feet apart. Gazing into each other's eyes. I know---my impression---but honestly, it felt meditative. Holding the connection. I run by...and there, out of the corner of my eye...I see it. One pounces on the other. Leap. Pure play. Delight. 

Just as real.

Just as whole.

Just as present.

My/our privilege is to...

See it all.

Be with it all.

Embrace it all.

What an outrageously delightful joy----squirrels, magpies and bunnies. My earbuds bringing new thoughts. The barriers in my mind shattering minute by minute, step by step. And I haven't even had breakfast yet. 


Cooking Music

I Love to Cook.

The real question, though, would be "How often do I cook?" We all know that gap. The things I love---and how long it's been since we've done them!

Well, lately I've been cooking more. As the spirit moves me. With the stuff in the frig that's saying, "It's NOW or never!" To eat more healthily. (Yes, I'm happy to report that the whole plants eating continues! Yes...of course, a teensy bit of this and that have gone in...but mostly, I'm loving grooving in this new, clean way of eating.)

You know what else I love?? Trying new things? Cooking up new recipes. There are two tricks I've discovered which have made all the difference---which I'll gladly pass along to you. 

Secret Trick #1: Make sure the "recipe" sounds good to you in the first place!

YOU know your tastes. So---while being willing to stretch a little, make sure to also connect with your intuition (also called your "gut"--kind of perfect for this anology) and see if you're really eager to taste it! If the answer is no---pass on that recipe!

Secret Trick #2. Your Flavor of Music!

Your own flavor of music that makes you move and groove and light up as you swerve and jive across your kitchen floor. Now---this is as unique as there are people! I'll tell you mine shortly. Maybe it will be yours, too. Or----maybe there's some secret, hidden musical sauce in you that will lube what you are up to. Don't be shy. Let those tunes out! And you'll be on your way.

Paris Cafe Accordian!

That's it. For me----the Paris Cafe accordian vibe puts me right there. I'm a softie for accordian music. Maybe because my mom played when I was little. Maybe it's the reediness. I. Just. Love. It.'s what's really working for me. First, I fire up my Jawbone Big Jambox on my counter (my super-cool portable tunes player that looks like a hot red lego brick that would be equally as happy in the Metropolitan Museum of Design!). Then, I fire up Spotify and search for "Paris Cafe" or "Accordian". Easey Peasey! Turn it on--and a grin instantly lands on my face. Wry. Like I'm going on a date. Fun. Like I'm on an adventure---which of course I am...with food! I play it nonstop til it's time for dinner. Then, it MAY be the right music for dinner, too----or you can slide into something else.

Here's the truth: YOU will know. WHAT you want to cook up. WHAT the just right music is for you.

And----if for some reason you don't know on either question---well, then, simply begin experimenting! I guarantee you'll discover your secret flavor. And that's what will nourish you!

Pssssst. In case you think we've only been talking about food. Ahem. The very same tricks apply to discovering and cooking up your own unique, succulent life! 

What's your favorite cooking music?? I'd love to know in comments. Who knows--it just might inspire the incredible dish that emerges in someone else's kitchen---or life!



It Didn't "Just Happen"


Yesterday began with a trip to the dentist for a filling. Better to fill than fall out, I figure! And, in a deft move of efficiency, I cruised my little Fiat Convertible right over to Discount Tire, for a little swaperoo of my snowtires to summer. (Yes, a little seasonally late---but an impromptu trip to Europe bumped this bit of lifecare---of course!)

And you know what happened?

What could easily be a drudge was joygasmic! I'm not kidding.

How did that happen? (Because it didn't "just happen".)

Here's the secret.

#1. Don't expect it to be drudge. If you do, it will! No kidding...I sort of looked forward to it! 

#2. EMBRACE the  S  P  A  C  E.  Notice that there's opportunity right here. Everywhere, really! IF we can see it!

#3. Be prepared. When I was little I was in Girl Scouts. Our motto: Be Prepared. We each made something called a "Situpon". Vinyl folded over a big magazine and stitched. Kept our bums dry in the rain. Well---I guess that learning stuck, because there I was---prepared! (Less dry though---read on!) I'm a big reader so I had a book with me. One I'd grabbed and was about 3/4 of the way through. Busy days...and well, you know, it had sort of shuffled to the bottom of the pile. So----out it came!

#4. CHOOSE your environment. Notice the options! Expand what's possible! I'm not an inside girl. Not drawn to the sound of mechanics and the scent of burned coffee. That's the norm for most people. And I know it's not for me. Outside---well, it was a clear, sunny, blue sky Colorado day. Were there benches/chairs out there? No. Ahhhhh, but there was a slice of green grass. Now, I have to say, the first thing I noticed was a woman who took her little dog onto the grass---and he did his thing. Well--------gave me a teensy pause. But you know----what won out was another stretch of grass (not freshly watered and scented by a canine creature---to the best of my knowledge!) I went for it. And---as I laid down, oh did it cushion me. Ahhhh. AND was still damp from being watered. The old me would have leapt up, not wanting to get wet. But, as I relaxed into it, I realized it was perfect. The day was hot. The dampness cooled me. Just right. And there I was, on my tummy, in the grass, in my body, and so able to enter INto my book.

#5. Let it flow. The pages flew by. Just what I needed. Rich and resonant. Connecting me with memories, aspirations, myself, and things long forgotten. In the still grass of Discount tire I found myself. After awhile, I realized I was getting close to the end---and the time was longer than they'd said it would take. Choicepoint. Had they called my name? I decided to just keep gift myself with this moment, right to the end...even if my car was done. Finish the arc. Like licking the plate. I did. Closing the book and inhaling one last time. 

#6. It's OK if you get stiff. I realized it was hard to move! Getting up was tricky. How surpising and real and funny! But, it was fine....just fine. Sort of a reading "athletic injury"! 

#7. Celebrate. Take a moment and realize that you created this gift of space and time by your willingness to see it. To step into it. To receive it.  It's true. I came prepared. I have the gift of shifting perspectives which makes all the difference. I love that about me. And want it for you...for everyone, really.


That's how the dentist and the tire shop became joygasmic! What about you? Remember a time you made this shift----and were transported from drudge to joy? Leave it in the comments right here! We'd love to hear about it here. What's YOUR SECRET?? 

Juice. Joy. In it ALL. Even the dentist chair! (Someday, I'll write about the meditation I did there! Or the time I got a flat tire...or...)




Masculinity, Femininity, Headphones and a Mic! 

A few weeks ago I did something new! It even required new apparel---this time, headphones and a big wand of a microphone! It was my pleasure to dance in the moment as a guest on the Dr. Laura Ceil Show. I breathed a little more deeply. Smiled broadly. Leaned in...and wondered what would come next! Together with Laughing Leader coach Greg Giesen, we delved into a rich topic---which took us surprising places. Ones I hadn't imagined I'd go to---and when I did, came so naturally.

Here's the link to the show:

We leaned in, listened deeply, sometimes laughing, sometimes I could feel the wholeness of my being rising, eyes wide open playing hard as I rose to the real.

It's a wild, exhilarating thing---to get real in real time on real airwaves reaching real people. Every word vibrated and mattered.

Which is really true for all of us, in each moment really, isn't it?

We just don't (if you're like me!) realize it and live from that truly alive place!

I'm curious. You---a unique flavor of masculine and feminine combo of juiciness. What's there? Comment freely---in the space of discovery and claim. That' a verdant land! Happy spring (to the Norhern Hemispherians!)