Tag Archives: Elizabeth Gilbert

A Serious Nudge from the Universe (the WOW for 2.14.16)

I have so many thoughts about our new WOW, let’s just jump right into it.  And please forgive my momentary bursts into song.

It was just that kind of day:

Seriously gang, we’ve gotten the word RISK THREE TIMES since I started pulling a word of the week!

I have to say, too, that I always put the cards back in the bag sort of strategically (around the edges) because truthfully, I like getting NEW words.

So we make plans and God laughs.

And the universe is nudging.

I remember back in the 70’s I was hugely into roller skating. Every Saturday my Dad would drop me off for my beginner lesson followed by a “free skate” matinee.  After the matinee an intermediate-level class was scheduled (They jumped!  And spun!) that I LONGED to go to.  My best friend, Chrissy Johnson was in that class, and on this particular Saturday I was staying through her super-cool kids class so I could go home with her for a sleepover that night.

I sat in one of the benches in the perimeter just WISHING I could be in the class with her.

After a few minutes passed, I got the brilliant idea that if the teachers could only see how Dorothy Hamill-ish I was (on wheels, not blades) they would surely stop everything, roll over to me and invite me to join in.

While those in the rink were practicing their turns and leaps, I began trying to do the same outside of the railing.  I even had the hand movements down, flailing my arms in what I thought were artistic and inspired ways.


So I did a few jumps (a bit loudly) to show I wasn’t afraid of being airborne.


I positioned myself right in front of the windowed booth where the “DJ” and management were stationed and did a thrilling demonstration of an arched-back stop, directly blocking their entire view and ending with a head toss and blinding smile in their direction.

All that was missing was a “ta-da!” and wild applause.

As I waited for the inevitable “Where have you BEEN all our lives?” instead it was announced over the loudspeaker that if you were not a student in the intermediate class to please be seated as the perimeter was not intended for performances, which were distracting to the REAL skaters.

Okay, they didn’t say it exactly like that, but I got the point.

By now, how many of you are saying to yourself, “Where the heck is she going with this story?”

Well, I’ll tell ya.

It has occurred to me that much of my life I have been waiting to be DISCOVERED.  Maybe you have, too.

Surely if we perform well enough, some benevolent soul will see what the world has been missing and give us a platform (or rink…or a stage with spotlights..or a raise…or permission to move…or a  – well, fill in the blank for whatever you’ve been longing for).

What has struck me is that this is a very passive (aggressive), but weak approach to getting what you want out of life.

I don’t want OTHER people to hold the power for my destiny.  Why should my sense of happiness and fulfillment be contingent on someone other than me believing in me?!

Instead of the theatrics or exhausting performances (which never got me much, how about you?) perhaps this RISK word is saying, “Um, why don’t YOU just go for what you want out of life?” Or (shockingly) just ask for it!

We fear putting ourselves out there because of the chance of rejection.  But hearing the word no, last time I checked, wasn’t a fatal blow.

Had that nine-year-old girl risked it and just ASKED if she could participate in the class, who knows, they might have let me!

Or, they might have said no because of a very good reason.

Instead, my takeaway was that I just wasn’t good enough.  Because in my little girl mind, had I been good enough they would have made an exception for me.

My 52-year old self knows how ridiculous that sounds. But if I transpose that experience into the  present-day, I consider that some of my takeaways in life have been based on faulty premises; premises born of dancing around my desires because I was too afraid to claim them for my own and head squarely in their direction.

Even with this blogging venture, there has been this little part of me that has thought, “Maybe if Elizabeth Gilbert or Oprah would somehow see and like something I’ve written and share it with their respective 5 billion followers, I can…”

…I can what?

Hmmm…good question!  After a moment’s fear about the answer, here goes:

I can fulfill my dream of encouraging people full-time, writing a book, speaking around the country about life lessons, helping people give themselves a break, make them laugh and in the process bring some joy into their lives.

Yep.  That’s my dream. But I can’t pin my hopes on Liz or Oprah (though hey, ladies, if you’re out there…) riding in on a white Mercedes to make my dreams come true.

Here’s one thing I believe – our dreams are planted in our hearts from the time we are born. They are Divine.  They were never deposited in our hearts to be a thorn or to frustrate us through life.

Your dreams, my dreams – they were meant to bloom.

So I say to all of us this week, don’t abdicate your dreams. Let’s not dance around our life’s vision.

Oh!  And for some of you, please give yourselves permission to HAVE a dream…to want something. Whether it is your health, a husband, a new car or an artistic outlet…let it breathe this week.

Take the risk of admitting what you want. And with risk as our nudging WOW, maybe even ask for it. 

One reader at a time, one day at a time, I’m practicing what I’m preaching.

And I’m cheering you on all the way.



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WOW (Word of the Week) for 9.6.15

Happy Labor Day weekend!

I set a new world’s record for napping this week, which is one of my favorite things to do, along with reading good books and meeting new people. It was a wonderful vacation, though not at all what I expected when we booked this cruise to Alaska. (You’ll find out why when you hear my preamble to this week’s video reveal…)

Last week’s word was TRUTH and I realized the importance of stepping away from the daily routine and unplugging my electronic devices to come to terms with what was really going on INSIDE of me.

We can blame our frustrations on other people and their behaviors, but this course leads to no resolve. Instead, taking the time to reflect and ask questions like, “WHY does this person annoy me so much?” or “Why do my buttons always get pushed in this particular scenario?” resulted in valuable answers.

My TRUTH revealed this week is that I have been trying to be superwoman to prove my worth in my professional and personal life. Anything that seems to shine a light on imperfection or a failure flares up a turmoil that results in responses that are LESS than my best me.

And really, is my worth wrapped around how quickly I respond to e-mails? Sounds silly when written out…

I was UNPLUGGED this week and the world didn’t end.

This inflated sense of self is really the other side of the coin of low self esteem.

I have decided that henceforth I can only do my best. Anything more or anything less is just me trying to compensate for fears…

…and signals that I’m not voting with LOVE, which is my highest aim.

I’ve felt a low-level anxiety leave this week, and it’s not invited back. I do not want to be driven to produce. I want life and projects and friendships to FLOW as spillover of my love tank being full.

Note to self:  If you’re love tank is empty, FILL IT.  Stop looking to other people to do it for me!

So THIS week’s WOW is a great opportunity to put all that I learned into play. Here we go!

What’s that?  I think I actually heard some of you thinking, “Well, I’m just not a creative person…”


Every time you’ve thought “outside of the box” or dreamed a dream for your life, you’ve been creative.  Every imagination that led to an action was YOU, creating your life.

This week, I’m going back to the best book I ever read about creativity, The Artists Way by Julia Cameron.  My sister recommended it highly; my niece, Deena created the cards we pull each week after reading it, and my friend Renee surprised me with the book, workbook and a daily meditation based on the book one Christmas.  So rich with insight, I’ve picked it up and put it down again a multitude of times in recent years, and I discover something new each time.

So from the chapter “Spiritual Electricity:  The Basic Principles” is a great foundation from which to begin our week:

How do you know if you are creatively blocked?  Jealousy is an excellent clue.  Are there artists whom you resent?  Do you tell yourself, “I could do that, if only…”  Do you tell yourself that if only you took your creative potential seriously you might:

  • Stop telling yourself, “It’s too late.”
  • Stop waiting until you make enough money to do something you’d really love.
  • Stop telling yourself, “It’s just my ego” whenever you yearn for a more creative life.
  • Stop telling yourself that dreams don’t matter, that they are only dreams and that you should be more sensible.
  • Stop fearing that your family and friends would think you crazy.
  • Stop telling yourself that creativity is a luxury and you should be grateful for what you’ve got.

Brenda speaking here:  Have you heard those voices in your head?

Me too.

I shout through the computer:  IT’S NOT TOO LATE!  YOUR DREAMS MATTER!

And yes, let’s be grateful for what we have, but never diminish the part of you yearning for more.

Let’s nurture our creativity this week; make some messy stabs at building something new; applaud our missteps as they lead us closer to our dreams…

The biggest concept around our WOW is that WE are the creators of our own life story.  Our free will, our imaginations, our choices; the respect given to our dreams and heart’s desires…they all combine to write the novel that can be our happy ending.

Yes, I believe in the grace of God (oh boy, do I!) and Divine intervention.  But too often we hide behind these truths and never get about the business of doing OUR part.

So let’s do our part this week, and write an exciting chapter in our lives.

How do you see creativity playing out in your life this week?

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