your failure

2925094345_624e28f5e1_bYour failure is to get up everyday and say you are going to do something and then not do it.

Your psyche will soon believe it and will give up on you too. Your self-sabotage will win.

Every day you wake and think – I want to be healthier, I want to write more, I want to volunteer, I want to… whatever it is that you say to yourself – if you continue to say it and never do it – that’s failure.  Stop thinking – start doing. A lot of people will say there is no such thing as failure and part of me thinks that is true, but we can’t always be gentle with ourselves when we want to get something done, when we want to do something meaningful, when we want to heal our own lives. Sometimes we need to kick our own asses and get up off the couch and change something.

That small voice needs to be heard and listened to – believe it just onceand then again.

Sometimes the fear of following through is actually the fear of success – stop thinking – start doing.

Your failure, my failure, our collective failure is to not even try. And then again – there is always tomorrow.

Stop? or GO! – GO!

Accidents_lead to breathing

This morning I got up was thinking I didn’t want to go to the gym – was mopey about some things and while driving the car to the Max station I ran over something, a medium sized animal of some sort. A gasp fell out of my mouth, uncontrollable sobs and sniffling came next. Through the side mirror, I saw whatever it was run away, it didn’t look hurt, but I just hit it.

Should I stop? Should I get out and see if it’s okay? There is traffic behind me. I can’t stop crying – there is no way I can go look.  Instead I pull to the side of the road and cry for a minute and try not to think of the thud and the crunching sound. My heart hurts.

The things that make us stop are the places I like to pay special attention.

Life is interesting that way, the moment  you think you’ve got it, you’re good, yep this is it. You run over some small furry animal and it makes you take a longer look at things.

It’s almost the end of another year and a good time to pause, a good time to let my heart hurt if it does and to let myself breathe.

Sometimes breathing is difficult.

I can’t get enough air in between the must do, must have, must think about, must provide clarification, must get better at.

I can’t breathe.

So, today – I’m breathing, that’s the goal for today, just keep breathing. No need to do anything else. I’ll think about the future tomorrow, I’ll make goals and plans when I’m finished with pausing.

I hope that little furry guy is okay.



Verb: 1. Cause (someone) to lose confidence or enthusiasm.
2. Prevent or seek to prevent (something) by showing disapproval or creating difficulties

People will not always understand you or believe in you. Some will even try to discourage you. People who want to take your courage are lacking something themselves. It’s okay – let them talk, but don’t pay it much attention.

You can choose to let it stop you, you can choose to let it in or choose to let it go.  That’s the greatness of being you. You can choose to let people’s advice in or not and sometimes it might be the exact advice you need to hear and yet you still don’t have to listen.

When you’re trying to build yourself up and you’ve not quite gotten to the point of having courage about it – there will ALWAYS be someone willing to say STOP, DON’T GO, YOU CAN’T, BORING, DUMB, whatever else they might say. It might even be you trying to discourage yourself from moving forward, taking the next step, believing.  Don’t listen.  Keep going, keep being you, keep believing you can, make your own mistakes. And don’t take any I told you so advice.


8254174933_dd536912a2_bI try not to get bogged down in being sentimental.

I read this book years ago Conscious Femininity – Interviews with Marion Woodman and this passage stuck with me.

On how sentimentality robs us of our feeling:
Woodman: To me sentimentality is not genuine feeling. Sentimental people tend to ignore their own shadow, their own darkness. They cover up real suffering with self-pity, for example, and stultify their own growth. Or they may focus their energy on another person who is trying to deal with genuine feeling, perhaps genuine evil, and because they’re unable to face that in themselves they say, “Poor thing.” They take a condescending attitude toward people who are fighting for their lives trying to get to their integrity. Sentimental people refuse to suffer. Real anger or real grief are put into cotton wool that smothers any possibility of transformation because they cannot stand the fire, and real feeling is tempered in fire.  Real feeling moves into the conflict and hold the opposition until the new is born. Sentimentality fears the heat of passion. It takes a holier-than-thou attitude and pretends it knows no evil, feels sorry for anyone trapped in compulsive behavior. Nazis were sentimental. Children are not.

Today, I’m being sentimental about my life and feeling sad for myself and at the same time taking pause for where I’ve been, what I’ve learned and where I’m going.  In a way maybe it  is not actual sentimentality, but a remembering, an honoring of days gone by. Not wishing them different, not passing them off, but feeling them the way they come through to me.

Sometimes, okay most times, when I hear a Christmas song, it brings a lump to my throat or I see a family in front of a Thanksgiving table, it turns me to tears. I used to push that aside and not deal with it at all, thinking it was because of the wonder of the season, the magic, the miracle of it all, but it’s not.  It’s grief for what I missed. What I’ve lost – my mother, my father, my two brothers and all the other things – we all have things that make us sentimental.

So, while I’m feeling sad, I remind myself – I’m no “Poor thing.” I fought life for my integrity, my authenticity and I can be okay just grieving – what might take a thousand more days to grieve, but I know if I keep  letting it come in, come through – things will change. I’ve seen it. Instead of avoiding what’s going on, I ask – what am I avoidingAm I being sentimental or am I willing to really feel what’s going on? and then letting whatever that is in, without sentimentality, might change your life.

Marked or governed by feeling, sensibility, or emotional idealism
Dig into sentiment when you need to, DON’T forget to dig your way back out.
What are you avoiding? What’s asking you to suffer? What makes you sentimental?

the right words at the right time

7505372906_226767c8f5_bIt always happens. The right words come at the right time.

I’m just about to give up an idea, a spark, a thought of what I want to do or be doing or how to do something differently and someone says something that urges me on, causes me to change, or to not listen at all and keep going – because it’s the right thing to do for me.

And then sometimes it’s not about hearing the right words at the right time, it’s about listening to whatever question I have at the moment.

In letters to a young poet, Rilke says the questions we have of ourselves may be the answer themselves.

…have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer. 

I don’t often like when things are challenging and yet I love the challenge. I say I want things to be easy, but I’ll never be happy if things are always easy. I say that I don’t want to question myself but to just keep going toward what I said I was going to do and then I love to question it.

Not everything that is “worth it” is challenging, but most times, for me, anything that is challenging me is “worth it”. It’s worth taking the chance to see what comes from it – what new information is about to blow my mind. It’s the difference between living and being alive. It’s a small risk in becoming more of who I am, to take the challenge to see if it’s worth it and to learn along the way.

In the last couple of weeks two people have said something to me that stopped me in my tracks, that validated my thinking in a way that surprised me that it was true to them. Are they talking about me or just an image of what they believe me to be? And then I thought to myself, it doesn’t matter, they heard something from me at the right moment in time that maybe helped them live the answer to something they were questioning, or challenged them, or was whatever it was they needed to hear.

That to me, is worth it. The challenge is to keep going.

The right words come at the right time as do the right questions.

Keep going, keep doing, keep questioning, keep listening, keep being more alive.