Tag Archives: positivity

10 Life Lessons from a Couch Olympian

I love watching the Olympics, like everyone else.medium_4379618393

The few individuals in the world who have devoted their lives to the pursuit of athletic perfection in their chosen field is an inspiration.

You rally behind them – rooting for your country’s representative to do their best, even if this is the first time you’ve ever heard their name.

You hold your breath during their performance, gasping if they fall.

But what does it take to become an Olympian?

Personally, I haven’t a clue – my favourite sport is channel surfing.

But for 16 days every two years, I am taken back to my childhood when I imagined I could be Nadia Comaneci.  (Btw, did you see her during the 2014 Sochi games? I would still like to be her!!)

One of the Canadian women athletes (and I am ashamed to say that I can’t recall which one – if you know, please post it below) said something that I thought really summed up what sets Olympians apart from the rest of us mere mortals.

She said, (and I am paraphrasing),
“The Olympics aren’t something you can dream about coming to.  You have to believe you will get here.”

It’s been almost a week since I heard that, and it has stayed with me.  Not because I believe that one day I will get to the Olympics, especially if I put zero effort into training for …well, anything.

But I resonated with that statement because it could be applied to each of us, in whatever our life’s pursuit.

For me, my career goal is to tell the stories of people and businesses who are making a difference in the world so they can gain the recognition and support they need to continue their great work.

I could go about making up ad campaigns and marketing strategies to attract companies to my website.  I could cold-call prospects.  I could network and schmooze my patootie off, but if I don’t BELIEVE that I can do this work, I will never reach the ‘Olympic’ level I’ve dreamt about.

Why? Because something in me – in the way I speak, in how I present myself to clients – will convey that I don’t believe in myself – so why should they?

Of course I can’t just cross my fingers, close my eyes, click my heels and say ‘I believe, I believe’ – even if I feel that belief in my soul.

The belief has to be accompanied by action.

There is work to be done to attract the clients, just as the athletes need to train vigorously for hours on end.

I will compete against others vying for the same clients.  And I will win some and I will lose some.  That’s part of the game.

I have heard that athletes that win a silver medal are often depressed becausemedium_2723280142 they were so close to the gold; that bronze medal winners are thrilled because they made it onto the podium; and that fourth place winners are driven to train even harder and often return to win a medal themselves at the next Olympics.

The psychology of competition is complex and interesting.

Often our biggest competition is against ourselves.

We question our very value and self-worth.

Can I do this?
Will anyone find me in the vast webosphere?
What can I offer that is different from the next person?

While I won’t be presented with ribbons or medals for each of my wins, I will consciously acknowledge and celebrate each victory, no matter how small, because with each step I am learning what it takes to be champ.

Here’s what I believe:
To have a chance at winning, no matter the race, you have to:

1. Find what you love to do.
2. Learn all you can.
3. Practice every possible moment.
4. Set firm and realistic goals.
5. Set your intention.
6. Believe you can do it, no matter what others may say.
7. Do it – as many times as it takes, over and over again.
8. Surround yourself with coaches and cheerleaders.
9. Celebrate each and every milestone.
10. Never stop believing.

And every now and again, look back at the starting line and see how far you’ve come.  

Because every victory along your journey is a gold medal win.

Share your latest victory below.  
(Tooting your own horn is like playing your personal anthem.)

Photo credits:
Couch Olympian: photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/sonnetofthemoon/4379618393/”>sonnetofthemoon</a&gt; via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>cc</a&gt;
Doggie winners: photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/geckoam/2723280142/”>geckoam</a&gt; via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>cc</a&gt;
Advertisements

Positive Ponderings: Words That Serve


What three words would you use
to describe yourself?

Now ask three people what three words 
they would use to describe you.

*  *  *

Then think about:

How many of those twelve words are similar?

Do you agree with all the words?

Are you surprised by any?

Do these words change
your perception of yourself?

Seriously.  Try this!

Share your words and your discoveries below. 

Why Is The Sky Blue?

medium_483158331 The age-old question which scholars and school children have answered with equal thought and insight is one in which I have my own theory – simple yet obvious – and one in which I am sure to be nominated and ultimately win some worldly award for Questions Yet To Be Answered To The Satisfaction Of All Mankind.

So, why is the sky blue?

Simple. So we can see rainbows.

Brilliant, right? Think about it.

If the sky were red, the rainbow would be missing a stripe.

Same goes for yellow, pink and orange.

Also, had the sky been white, how would we know if it were cloudy?

Brown or Green? Mountains and trees would vanish, camouflaged.  Millions of people would be walking around smacking into things.

So why does blue seem the perfect choice?

Blue sets off all the other colours so that we can see and appreciate their beauty.

Now stay with me. I have saved the best for last; the indisputable, award-clinching part.

If, as I say, the sky is blue so that we can see rainbows, why does that matter?

What good are rainbows?

Rainbows symbolize hope.

An end to the storm.

The light at the end of the tunnel.

That tomorrow is a new day.

And as long as we all have hope, we’ll keep our chins up, our eyes on the horizon and keep searching for that elusive pot of gold.

And what better reason is there than that?

Would you agree? Comment or nominate me for the world award below.

Photo credit: http://photopin.com
flickr.com/photos/marthax/483158331/

Is A Chance Meeting Really Just Chance?

Years ago, a chance meeting left me yearning for more.medium_7864852790

The first encounter was brief but I have never forgotten it.

Something left an impression on me.  What was it?

The voice on the phone perhaps?

The feeling that I had found that perfect match?
You know…when your values are validated.

When someone else thinks the same as you.

And I don’t just mean you both like vanilla ice cream with butterscotch sauce.

I mean your core values;
the ones that when challenged make you angry,
unable to believe that someone would have a differing opinion.

I had such an encounter — 5 years ago
and have longed ever since to see if my intuition was correct.

Lately my intuition has been strong.  In fact, I have been surprised how it is serving me.  So you can imagine both my excitement and trepidation when I decided that today I would have my answer.

I’ve imagined it all – the smells, the lighting, the views, the location, the sounds, the ambience, the people milling about.

Could I be expecting too much?

Thankfully, my intuition served me again.  In fact, it offered me a full course of overflowing ‘You Were Right!‘  Love when that happens!

Five years ago, I was working on a project to bring bird nesting boxes to schools across the country, working in conjunction with Bird Studies Canada and I wanted to send appropriate gifts to businesses who were donating their services to aid in the project.

Surfing the net, I stumbled upon a place in Toronto that sold ‘certified bird friendly’ coffee.

One call to the owner and I knew I’d found my match.

He owned a coffee shop by the lake that not only sold organic sustainably farmed bird friendly coffee, but all their snack and meal offerings were organic too.

Touted as a neighbourhood hang-out, on the shores of the lake, playground near by, jazz on the weekends – I was hooked.

Buy gifts of coffee for the donors? No-brainer.  Done.  Check.

…but there had to be more.  This could not be a one time encounter. 

I had to see this place in person.

Since I don’t live in the neighbourhood, I once sought it out when I thought I was nearby, but to no avail.

Today however, I would be nearby – very nearby – so I plotted and planned to go.

The small building, one side completely covered with a mural of an underwater scene with the undercarriage and feet of a duck gracing the surface, the facade painted cream with garishly red-trimmed windows and mouldings, made it hard to miss.

I entered with anticipation, ready to meet a soul mate.

Large windows filled the shop with light, it’s squeaky door announcing one and all.  Two bay windows offered cozy nooks to read or people watch.

An old wooden church pew allowed for plenty of seating with iron and marble tables small enough for intimate chats or a laptop.

The back room with diner-style booths and more cozy chairs in small groupings took advantage of the windows overlooking the playground and lake which although partially frozen now and cold outside, I was tempted to get a ‘to-go’ and stroll the boardwalk.

Instead, I selected a spot on the pew and watched the regulars come and go, some being addressed by name and chatting with the efficient staff.

‘A regular’ sits beside me on the pew – his favourite spot, he shares, telling me why mine is not quite right.

Jazz plays on the stereo.  Aromas of freshly ground coffee and healthy soup fill the air.

The wooden planked floor and burlap coffee bags used to cover inventory on the shelves add to the old charm of the place.

Gorgeous photographs of birds hang gallery style on the wall behind me.

Organic coffee in bags for home brewing and 5 kinds of organic chocolate tantalize me.  I’m already considering what to buy to relive the experience at home, (or on the way home as in the case of the chocolate).

It is places like this that bring together my value of ecology and ethical farming practices.

The connection of like-minded people, where small things we do on a daily basis to support local initiatives, which in turn support a larger cause and bring awareness to environmental issues, make me feel that there is hope for what I hold dear.

It is a place in the world, albeit a tiny place, where I feel the fight has been won and all is right in the world.

A place where my soul is rejuvenated.

And that, my friend, was not chance, but destiny.

Is there a place in your world where you feel your values are supported?
A place you love to go because somehow it resonates with your soul?  Share it below.

Bird-Friendly coffee shop in Toronto, Ontario, Canada: Birds and Beans
Another of my faves for very similar reasons: CoffeeEco, Kingston, Ontario

photo credit: Linh H. Nguyen via photopin cc

One Simple Way To End It All

garden June 6-06 035 (1)Tired of wishing things were different?

Sick of hoping things will change?

Discouraged by events not happening as you had imagined?

Me too.

Well I know one simple way to end it all.

I’ve been doing a lot of mindset work lately with a kind and wonderful woman named Therese Skelly.  She is a business coach, heck person, like no other I’ve met.

If you, like me, believe in the Law of Attraction, well we are likely babes in the cradle compared to Therese.  Therese embodies and imbues the Law as if she wrote it herself.  What’s more, she can extract from you deep-set beliefs like you wouldn’t believe and turn them on their head.

We’re complicated creatures, us humans, and it is surprising what makes us tick.

One of Therese’s lessons is to teach you to own your value; something many of us let others bestow upon us (often which are false messages rooted in jealousy, ignorance or fear) and then wear like a suit of armour shielding us from other more realistic heartfelt honest messages.

It was with this lesson that this next message came my way.

While perusing the blogs I follow, a recent post struck my eye; Tracie Louise’s post entitled “Giving Up Hope.”

Concerned, what I read imparted a startling message; her solution to end her turmoil.

Her philosophy, so simple and humble, struck my heart and mended the tapestry of lessons past.

Her message: she is tired of hoping for things to change, for ‘hope’ gives you an ‘out’.  I hope this will happen, but if it doesn’t, that’s ok because I can always fall back on blah blah blah. 

Instead, she is making the conscious choice to give up ‘hope’ and replace it with ‘Intention’.

Wow.  Think about it: Replace ‘Hope’ with ‘Intention’.

Aaaaaaaaaa! Do hear the angel chorus?

That one simple shift: Replace ‘Hope’ with ‘Intention’.

Simply change the way you look at the situation.

“I hope one day to be able to travel to Europe” changes to “I’m going to travel to Europe” and suddenly the planning begins.

How can I afford it? Start socking away bits of cash, get a part-time job, sell un-used items on eBay.

Where will I go? Start the mental planning, pour over maps, google travel deals.

When will I go?  Pick a date and write it on your calendar.

By simply making the mental shift, you have opened the door for new possibilities (my new favourite word).

The Law of Attraction is strong, my friend, so be sure your intention is clear.

I’ll bet you’ll be surprised how things start falling into place.

Giving up Hope for Intention. Are you with me?

photo credit: Carolin Grandin
All rights reserved.

Climate Change & Extreme Weather – The Conclusive Connection.

Some camps are still trying to debunk the connection between Climate Change, a.k.a. Global Warming, and the extreme weather events that are occurring with increased frequency and intensity across the globe.

While storms, tornadoes, hurricanes, tsunamis and droughts engulf, destroy, and devastate cities, towns and villages, the discussion continues.

“Can we prove that climate change and these recent severe weather events are related?”

REALLY?  {Hand-to-forehead} AAHHHH!!!

Eminent scientist and environmentalist (and I’m proud to say Canadian),
Dr. David Suzuki, explains the undeniable link.

The question now should be:

“What can we do to HALT this process?”  

Do you believe there is a connection between climate change/global warming and extreme weather events?”
Leave your comments below.

David Suzuki Foundation website: www.davidsuzuki.org
Video credit: http://www.vimeo.com

Bright-Side Of The Web: Environmental Solution?

In this time of environmental crisis, we need many solutions.

And the more problems that each solution can address the better.

Akinori Ito, a Japanese inventor, has developed a machine that addresses three of our top environmental issues:

  1. over-abundance of plastic garbage
  2. CO2 emissions
  3. need for oil

Watch and be amazed.

What do you think? Is he on to something?

Stop sharing those silly cat videos and share this one! 

video credit: YouTube