AND Each Light Has a Role in Lighting the Way

April 30th, 2017

The fog was dense. Trees looked like shadows, vaguely outlined against the thick soupy background. I noticed that the thick fog caused me to drive more slowly and pay more attention to the space immediately in front of the car, since I could not see far ahead of me on the road.

In that moment, I was struck by how life can sometimes be like driving through fog. The headlights are not really much use for navigating in fog. Fog lights, which focus on the pavement immediately ahead, offer the needed clarity to continue, as they light the road just ahead…much like moving forward in life one step at a time. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Look to Nature for Insight

April 23rd, 2017

On a walk past the marsh last week, I could see the beautiful blue heron, as it blended in with the colors of early spring. The grasses are still more brown than green in the marsh and everything is only slightly more colorful than a painting done in sepia ink. Yet with conscious focus, I could make out the majestic profile of the heron against the distant sky.

AND I found myself wondering what this wonderful bird had to teach. The lesson of blending in with surroundings, not standing out while still standing strong seemed a worthy insight from this beautiful bird. Often associated with unconventional logic, since its structure might suggest this bird would have difficulty flying, the blue heron is, indeed, a magnificent sight when it spreads its wings and flies. Yet, it blends in so well with the colors of its habitat, it is free to roam about without much fanfare. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Rise Up

April 16th, 2017

Easter is a holiday celebrated by people of the Christian faith worldwide. The spirit of the holiday is about rising up, going beyond the world of suffering and carnage, in order to shine light that might guide its people to do the same. Without too much attachment to the religious reference of the holy day, people of any faith, including faith in life itself, can recognize the call to rise above behaviors and ethics in this world that do not feed our oneness and humanity. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Attune to the Rhythm of Nature

April 9th, 2017

Anne Morrow Lindbergh wrote in her book, Gift from the Sea, that the ocean teaches patience, constancy, and faith. In our crazy and turbulent times, a little patience, constancy and faith might be just what the doctor ordered.

No matter what crazy tweets, news reports, or political agendas fill the media, the ocean continues its rhythm of ebb and flow. Each new wave moves towards the shore. Each undertow returns the water back to its source, after it has deposited its treasures on the sand.

Beachgoers, who have slowed the pace of their lives to align with the pace and breath of nature recognize the rocks, shells, and seaweed for the treasures they are and often pause to pick up a memento to take home as reminders of a quieter, natural rhythm of life. Each treasure is recognizes as temporary, something the tide may take back on its next visit, and the time to pause is now, while they lay open on the shore. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Add a Little Madness for Fun

April 2nd, 2017

March Madness is a term used to describe the crazy pace of tournament games for collegiate basketball, both men’s and women’s. And as a fan of Connecticut women’s basketball, I have been enjoying the frenzy of games, complete with anticipation, excitement at the possibility of new records and success for talented and hardworking athletes, and thoroughly enjoying the insights into the people behind the athletic accomplishments. The whole thing is just plain fun! Read the rest of this entry »

AND Fill Up Your Heart

March 26th, 2017

If you pause to notice the pace at which life seems to whiz by these days, it is really quite remarkable. Our lives are scheduled almost continuously, especially if we don’t consciously pause to ask whether the activities we are choosing to engage are the ones we truly choose to invest our energy in.

Sometimes the choice is to not do something. Other times, it may be to do something very different. And still other times, the choice may be to do what we tell ourselves needs to be done only to do it differently, in a way that is more nurturing of our hearts. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Find the Courage to Pursue Your Dreams

March 19th, 2017

I have spoken with several women, in the past weeks, who have either left or are in the process of leaving big jobs. All of them are primary breadwinners. Some have been at their companies for more than a decade. All talked about the pain of leaving unrealized dreams at their companies.

I have also talked with many who are underpaid, passed over for promotions after making major contributions, and working more hours than their health will support. AND as I reflect on the dreams and dilemmas, the words courage and devotion keep appearing. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Sing Your Song

March 12th, 2017

One recent chilly morning, I looked out the window to find four of my favorite little birds sitting on the deck rails singing. Oblivious to the lingering winter that periodically dumps the big storm and then vanishes, these little birds took their place on the railings and caused me to smile and stop what I was doing.

Their red heads and pinkish-red breasts add color to an otherwise unremarkable grey plumage. AND their song is just beautiful. No matter what thoughts or worries about shoulda, coulda, and woulda beens might have been in my mind, I was pulled back to the present. AND in that moment I celebrated with gratitude for the humble little finches that chose to grace me with their presence. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Rise to the Occasion

March 5th, 2017

I was thinking of the expression rise to the occasion recently. Watching contestants on The Voice give the best they have, pouring their dreams into their performances, and listening to them declare the music profession to be their ultimate dream caused me to think about what we mean by the phrase rise to the occasion.

It is easy to get buried in the moment of overwhelming workloads or immediate personal pain, whether emotional or physical. The moment can be overwhelming, as we tell ourselves a story about our pain or troubles, and then look for immediate consolation or relief. As powerful as the pain of any given situation may be, and as powerful as the desire of immediate relief in whatever form is available, we are also invited to rise above the pain by asking ourselves and what else is true? Read the rest of this entry »

AND Trust Your Direct Experience

February 26th, 2017

A week after shoveling snow and finding the plow had piled it way over my head, I looked outside to find a beautiful blue, cloudless sky. The weather reports were for temperatures in the high 40’s and low 50’s F, which I took to be quite mild for winter. My car registered 55 degrees F. So I decided to go for a walk.

Based on outside guidance, I abandoned my winter jacket for a lighter fall jacket over a wool sweater. I wore no hat or mittens. AND when I walked, I was cold! The air was cold. My hands were cold. I buttoned my jacket to the top and turned my collar up. I walked more briskly. AND still I was chilled. Read the rest of this entry »