Category Archives: My Story

What I’m giving Thanks for

It’s that time of year.

The time of year when all, or at least most, of us give thanks. We gather around tables with people we love (or sometimes, people we tolerate) and acknowledge all we have. And stuff ourselves.

I try to give thanks every day. Or nearly every day.

I’ve found that when I notice what I have, I feel better. When I call out what’s working, I feel better. When I appreciate the big and the little, I feel better.

Do you sense a theme?

Most days I list my good things in my “good year box” list on my phone. I counsel clients to write three things they’re grateful for each day, and what they did to contribute to those things. This highlights gratitude and self-efficacy, both of which strengthen our souls and minds. As often as I can, I stop and notice…and notice…and notice all the beauty and ease and light in my life and my day. And I feel better.

I am giving Thanks for so much.

For my family. For my older child home from the Midwest. For the amazing dinner my amazing husband has prepared. For the fact that I got to cook what I wanted to cook, and I got to opt out and put my feet up and rest when I didn’t want to cook. For my younger child who’s spent some quality time with me recently. For my friends and the multitude of people I care about. For the fact that I’ve found long-lost friends and made new friends.

For the fact that this time next year, my book will be out. Did I mention that I’ve signed with a publisher and my book will be out?

I have so much to be thankful for. I want to focus on it all.

Happy Thanksgiving!

I’d love to hear your thoughts, and please share this post with others if it resonates with you!

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Why do I lift heavy weights?

I was at the gym again this morning, lifting heavy weights.

Often I will stop mid-workout, turn to the guy next to me (not to be too gendered, but in the room where I lift, with the rack and the benches and the heavier weights, it’s mostly guys around me) and laughingly say, “Why do we do this? I mean, it’s kinda weird. We pick up heavy weights, move them around a few times, and put them down. What do we accomplish?”

The guys in the room generally laugh and say something witty back. And, in retrospect, I guess they’ve been kind because none of them have said to me, “Your weights really aren’t heavy!”

They’re heavy to me.

So, why do I do it? I was thinking this through this morning after my workout. Why do I push my body so hard? Especially as I get a little bit older and a little bit shorter – and any of you who know me know that getting a little bit shorter is probably not the most desirable thing on my agenda – and the heavy weights can’t help but push me in the wrong direction. Why do I do it?

Why have I deadlifted more than my bodyweight? And bench-pressed way more than my body weight? (Got that bragging in well, didn’t I?) Why do I?

Well, first off, it’s fun. I love lifting, and I love lifting more than people think I can. Second, when I started lifting I was in business school, and it was way more fun than studying. Then I developed muscles, because I have the type of body type that does. And that was fun too.

And third, and probably deepest and therefore probably most “important,” it makes me feel powerful. Being physically powerful makes me feel completely powerful.

As someone who was, I guess at least in some ways, somewhat of a victim when I was young – or at least somewhat victimized – lifting heavy weights makes me strong and makes me feel strong. Maybe it’s like when my oldest child, who only saw themselves as a “smart kid,” became a varsity athlete and began to see themselves as an athletic kid.

Maybe it’s changed how I view myself. Or maybe it’s given people a chance to view me more how I view myself (and less how my size might lead someone to view me). Deadlifting 115 lbs. reminds me of how powerful I am. As does bench-pressing 120. (I’ve now successfully bragged and told you roughly how much I weigh. ☺)

I like being strong. I probably was always strong on the inside, and I like being strong on the outside too. I like the way it feels, and I like the way I feel. I like reminding myself – as I’m learning more and more we all have to learn, or relearn – that, as Christopher Robin once said to Pooh, “You’re stronger than you think you are.”

I think that’s why I lift stupid heavy weights.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, and please share this post with others if it resonates with you!

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Everything counts

It seems that my yoga instructors are hell-bent on reminding me of life’s guidelines. Just the other day, the instructor reminded me (us) that everything counts.

Every thing counts. Every breath I take is an opportunity to breathe deeply and breathe in joy and love. Or to miss it. Every yoga pose is a chance to build my mental, physical and emotional muscles, as is, actually, every moment in my day. Every transition – from yoga pose to yoga pose or mundane activity to mundane activity – has the possibility to teach me more, ground me more, help me remember what I want to remember more.

I don’t mean to put added pressure on myself to always be on. I don’t want to put such emphasis on being present and aware that I’m mad at myself when I’m not present and aware. I don’t what to use my humanity as an excuse to beat myself up.

But I do want to remember that I can let every moment be a moment that matters. I can choose to enjoy the moment I’m in, learn from the experience in front of me, and suck the life juices out of my life – and my day.

I don’t have to let it be pressure; I don’t have to let it pile on stress. But I can show up as much as possible in every moment possible. The stranger on the street? I can smile and say hello and have a human connection. The wait for the delayed train? I can read something I want to read or text someone I want to connect with or just be in the moment with nothing to do but breathe and look around. The blog post I’m writing? I can pour my heart into it. Or I can decide to practice doing this thing less than perfectly and let whatever I write be enough.

Each moment, each task, each encounter, each space and to-do in my life is an opportunity. Because everything counts.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, and please share this post with others if it resonates with you!

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