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Monthly Archives: March 2007

Is Positive Reinvention in the Wings for You?

As many of you know, I’ve been on the road of reinvention for more than five years now, and it’s been a fascinating, exciting, and often bumpy ride. As I have endeavored to let go of habitual thoughts and actions that no longer support me, I’ve released many negative and limiting beliefs about life in general, as well as my own capabilities, strengths, gifts, and talents.

I’ve also come to know more intimately what I value and hold dear, both personally and professionally. In the end, I’ve come to understand and live from the knowledge that each of us is here at this time to fulfill a very important purpose, but until we get “real” with ourselves, that purpose remains unclear at best.

Do you know your unique purpose? Do you feel you’re on your own path of finding fulfillment, meaning, joy, and expansion in life? If the answer is “yes,” I’m sure that your clarity is inspirational to you as well as to others.

If the answer is “no” or “I don’t know,” your acknowledgement of this is a great sign that positive change is in the wings. I know from experience that it is indeed possible to discover all that you need to by getting to know yourself intimately, once and for all, and accepting and honoring your uniqueness. Your specialness–what makes you who you are–is not an accident. You are a perfect combination of history, experience, wounds, traumas, triumphs, joys, and brilliant wisdom and knowledge. All of this coalesces to create the special filter through which you experience life.

If you know who you are, and act from this knowledge every day, then reinvention is not necessary. If on the other hand you’ve lost touch with yourself, as I had, I hope you’ll consider getting on the path to reinvention and reclaiming your life direction, in whatever manner inspires and excites you.

There are so many great resources, books, courses, etc. available to jumpstart this reinvention process. One book I’ve found transformational is The Four Agreements, by Don Miguel Ruiz. This small, practical guide to personal freedom unlocked something immensely powerful in me — the idea that we must use our words impeccably (without “sin” or going against ourselves or others.) In order to support and love ourselves, we must express this love and support outwardly with our words and actions.

This little book helped me walk away from using my words to attack, criticize, demean, judge or go against others, and in doing so, go against myself. I slip up all the time, of course. But my awareness has been heightened as to the tremendous power of my words to move mountains, or conversely, to tear them down if the need emerges to do so.

Reinvention is a life-giving process. When we reinvent ourselves for our own greater good, we heal generations ahead of us as well as those who came before.

If you would like to share your stories of reinvention, or of how books like The Four Agreements have changed your life, I’d love to hear them. Please feel free to contribute here. Your story will inspire others, and help us all remember that embracing ourselves fully, and walking into our own creative power instead of fighting against it, is all that we truly require to experience the creation of a life of great meaning, growth, and joy.

Thank you very much for reading and sharing.

Relaxing into What Is – Why It’s Essential

This month, I am endeavoring to crystallize the important key findings that are emerging from my interviews (47 conducted to date) with women nationwide who have overcome professional crisis and transformed their lives and work (the study is Women Overcoming Professional Crisis: Finding New Meaning in Life and Work, co-sponsored by The Esteemed Woman Foundation). These interviews have been so inspiring, and have deeply expanded my love and admiration of women the world over. It has become even clearer to me all the many ways women strive to expand their lives, and to support and improve the life experiences of others.

This week, Laurie, a dear friend and colleague, was reviewing my research findings. In doing so, she shared with me a process that she has found to be essential in thriving through change. Her words were very meaningful (and true!) for me, so I’d like to share them with you.

Laurie shared:

“I have discovered that it is critical to trust that the circumstances in which you find yourself are exactly where you are meant to be. It seems that this experience [of embracing fully where you are] is precisely the catalyst for change. There is tremendous power in not resisting where you are, and in relaxing and being ok with not knowing what your next move will be, or where it may take you. Often in the midst of desperately wanting to make a change, it is very challenging to create a list of meaningful goals, objectives, etc., especially when you really don’t know where to “go from here.” My personal discovery was that when I didn’t think too hard, and just let it go and trusted that the universe would help me to see, I was in a far more liberating space.

There is great power in rewarding yourself for not knowing what’s next. This experience of not knowing perhaps might even be one of our goals. This open space allowed me to continue to “talk out loud” until I led myself to the path that was right for me. If I tried too hard to make a change it never came to fruition, because it wasn’t from my heart.”

What helpful advice Laurie gives. I, along with Laurie and many others, have found there is great positive energy and power in being OK with the present, even (especially) in the chaos. This “not knowing” state represents that we are willing to fly by the seat of our pants, be authentic in our words and actions, process our experience fully, and firmly trust in ourselves and in the creative power we share and hold.

I would add that when we move too quickly to reduce our own discomfort of the moment, we often bring about our own suffering, and our actions misfire. I have lived this experience quite a few times in the past. Now, when I am deeply uncomfortable or worried, I allow myself to feel it fully. I DO NOT take concrete action until I feel more able to move forward from a sense of balance, acceptance, and understanding of what is.

Both Laurie and I agree that being OK with not seeing the next step requires daily practice. The wonderful news is that the more we practice, the easier it is to own it and when necessary, realign and correct our path and our thinking, so that it continually comes from the heart and from a rock-solid belief that there is an ultimate perfection to all of it.

Thank you, Laurie, and all my colleagues, research participants, friends, and fellow transitioners, for your wonderful insights and wisdom. What a brilliant and inspirational group you are!

So…what is difficult for you to “relax into” right now?

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