Tag Archives: Enthusiasm

Enthusiasm is Childlike (and the New WOW)

With my enthusiasm level running on empty this week, and since I’m learning to take cues from my feelings, I encouraged myself to disengage from my regularly scheduled life.

My office looks out over the apartment pool, and I love seeing the palm trees sway and hearing the soothing drip of the water spray.

The office view – but on a cloudy day, the chairs are empty!

I look, but I never venture OUT there during the week.

I’m something of a machine when I’m in work mode, and I don’t take kindly to interruptions when the highlight for me is crossing off items from my “to-do” list.

It was lunch time, though, and I was weary. Nothing on that “to-do” list beckoned me.

So I broke from tradition, put on a swimsuit, grabbed a towel and sunglasses, and gave myself a half-hour to refresh.

Within five minutes, I was sound asleep.

Those of you who know me understand that I am a world-class napper, and can zonk out in even an upright position.

After what was about 15 minutes, I felt a tickle on my foot.

It was as gentle as a feather, and I didn’t awake with a start. No, it was more like a sleepy eye-opening that revealed the culprit.

The most adorable three year old boy in the history of forever.

I actually thought HE was a SHE at first, because his hair was halfway down his back, all black and curly. He was trying to get from his mom’s chaise lounge to his dad in the pool, and I was in the way.

So he held on to my foot to find his own footing.

When I looked at him, he just grinned.

I was in love.

I then observed him splashing with abandon, and I couldn’t help but smile.

Next, a family with four little blonde babies came strolling in.  Three were little girls with bows in their hair to match their swimsuits…and Jack.

Jack was ALL boy.

Once he was fully entrenched in his safety gear, he proceed to jump.  Up and down.  And up and down again.  Then into the pool, squealing with joy.

There was no second-guessing or self-conscious “Who’s looking at me and do I look/jump/sound okay?”

This was pure, childlike enthusiasm.

Jack flirted with me as he splashed around the pool, knowing he had me at hello with the mischievous glint in his eyes.

But he didn’t know how he affected my heart.

Oh, to return to that place of childlike glee!

Did I ever even have it?

I remember being so self-aware of my 100-pound self as a child, I don’t think I ever HAD a moment that I wasn’t self-conscious.

But my word of the weeks  – and my word for the entire YEAR is ENTHUSIASM.

And by George…or, by Jack – I want to be like a child in my approach to life.

Children were my teachers this week, as you can see and hear from this week’s video:

In the spirit of authenticity and NOT being self-conscious, I am less than a week away from my first-ever open-to-the-public event in Sarasota.  I have 80 seats to fill and think that three tickets have been sold.

GULP.

But whether there are three or three HUNDRED, I’m going to give it my all, with childlike enthusiasm.  If you are in the neighborhood on August 11th, please come!  Even better, make my day and secure your seat by visiting:  https://www.sarasotacenteroflight.com/event/running-on-empty-raise-your-vibration

Most of all, if you have the chance to sit it out or dance, I hope you dance!

xoxoooox

Brenda

Share This:

Expecting a Beautiful Life is My Birthright

Just to put you all on notice, I’m expecting an amazing year.

For years, I’ve said, “Watch out.  When I turn 55 my world is going to explode (in a good way.)”

And today, I turn 55.

For years I’ve been setting myself up for a rip-roaring year and I believe that outrageously wonderful things are ahead for me!

No, I’m not “psyching” myself up.

I’m just AM up.

There’s a real reason why I can so boldly say that 55 is going to be one for the record books.

I believe that my world is surrounded by well-being, underpinned by love, and fueled by a Divine love that is FOR me.

And you are too, by the way (but we’re talking about me right now.  ‘Cause it’s my birthday.)

I believe that any and everything I ever wanted shows up like a series of birthday presents, because God/Source is not stingy. There’s plenty of blessings to go around for everyone, and when you are loved unconditionally, you get rescued when you fall.

God breaks the fall every time.  I count on it.

Further, like a magnet, everything good is coming my way and even if things appear to be “off” they ultimately work out for my good.

I love how bold this is!  It’s invigorating to bask in a good feeling and to choose to live EVERY day expecting great stuff.

Now, you might be reading this and feel truly annoyed.

What about all the BAD stuff, Brenda?

Annoyed people, my head is not in the sand. 

But really, when did focusing on the bad ever help anyone?

C’mon!  You know my story!  We could mention all the low-lights here, but when I look over my shoulder, they all led me RIGHT HERE.  To this amazing point of happiness in my life.

And I’m not turning back.

Nor am I looking back, ’cause that’s not where I’m headed.

And I wrote and felt all of this BEFORE I picked the new WOW, which I also selected intending it to be my word of the YEAR. And even though all of the words that preceded this video were about my approach to life, I so hope the same for you.

That would be the best birthday present of all.  For all of you lovely people to fall madly in love with yourselves, to boldly believe that you deserve good, and by expecting it, to attract so much good stuff that you feel like you’re living in heaven on earth.

That’s what I’m going to wish for when I blow out the candles later today.

In the meantime:

Oh yes – now THAT’s a word I can sink my heart into this year.

Have a beautiful week, everyone.

You make my heart happy.

xoxoxox

Brenda

 

 

Share This:

Enthusiasm is to be Taken Seriously (& the New WOW)

Enthusiasm is NOT to be taken lightly.

It’s not for the fainthearted (or boring, for that matter.)

Knowing this has helped me stand up a bit straighter this week and walk in a little more power than usual.

I have ALWAYS lived an enthusiastic life and my zest for even little things like greeting cards and puppy dogs is sometimes met with a head shake.  Really?  C’mon Brenda, it’s not THAT exciting, is it?

I once interviewed an elected official in my previous job as a Public Information Officer, and I found one of her answers to be so interesting I responded, “WOW!”

She literally (on camera) said, “Wow?  What’s there to wow about?”

Fast forward 15 years and I’m still “WOW-ing” with my Word of the Week.

Only on a few occasions have I considered ramping down my approach to life a bit – particularly when it is met with an eye roll – but this is the way God made me and I’m sticking with it.  

And, if I need further reinforcement, here are a few good ones:

quotation-bo-bennett-love-happiness-enthusiasm-fear-hate-worry-meetville-quotes-8774

none-are-so-old-as-those-who-have-outlived-enthusiasm-quote-1

And one final kicker:

opportunities

Why do we curb our enthusiasm?  It’s the old “Don’t get your hopes up and you won’t be disappointed” scenario.

In my early teen years I lived that way and it didn’t work for me.  Since then, I’ve always got my hopes up.

Each week, I literally EXPECT to win the lottery.  (I haven’t.  YET.)  When I check the numbers I say to myself, “Oh…not this week.” (With full enthusiasm that it MIGHT be next week…)

I could list a million things that make me enthusiastic…but one of the tricks in life is to summon enthusiasm for what OTHER people find thrilling.  Instead of accompanying them under duress, it doubles their joy if you get into it, too.  So while at first, the band YES was a no for me, I am now completely taken in by Jon Anderson’s voice and wouldn’t miss a chance to see him in concert.  (YES is definitely a Duane thing.)

No, I don’t like to eat blue claw crabs.  But I am enthusiastic about the picnic tables at Peace River Seafood where you sit with strangers for hours.  Duane gleefully tries to beat his world record and I make friends.

I will never be enthusiastic about the Dallas Cowboys, but I’ll gladly go to a game (enthusiastically wearing my throwback Randall Cunningham jersey.)

Some of my greatest experiences in life have been those where I swallowed my LACK of enthusiasm and just joined in (parasailing, zip lining and snorkeling come to mind.)

Interestingly, all of the above involved my friend Anita.

You may not be enthusiastic about WHAT you’re doing, but if you are stoked about who you are doing it with, it can still fan your happy flame.

So no matter what this new WOW will be, let’s keep the fires of enthusiasm stoked (and stay stoked about life.)  It just may be the fountain of youth!

Here’s the reveal of the new #WOW:

With all of your sweet comments about Duane’s special guest appearance last week, THIS week is a bit more subdued.  (Hopefully we can get him to come back in the future and jazz things up.)

For now, may it ALL COME TOGETHER – for all us this week.

Love,

Brenda

Share This:

Joy, Silliness. Enthusiasm (and the New WOW)

We went off the rails a bit in this week’s recording of the WOW.  A special guest appearance by Snoopy and my HUSBAND escalated into silliness  – but we went for it enthusiastically.

Silliness is underrated, don’t you think?  

There’s a lightness and freedom to being goofy that my husband has mastered.

I haven’t always appreciated it.

Sometimes, I find it downright maddening.

But when I take a step back and see that deep crevice of a dimple in his cheek and how it lightens up the world around him when he makes stuffed animals talk or contorts his face like Jim Carrey or jumps into quoting lines from Young Frankenstein, I know he is the exact yin to my yang; the peanut butter to my jelly…and the much needed cream in my coffee.

One time during the holiday season we were at the Christmas Tree Store and a particularly rousing carol came on.  He started a flamboyant, broadway-worthy dance in the aisle.

I first observed this with caution : “Was anyone watching?”

My second impulse was to join in…and next thing you know, Fred and Ginger were having at it with the abandon of slightly crazy people.

If you’re going to go for it, do it ENTHUSIASTICALLY, whatever it is!

Here’s what I love best about the word enthusiasm:  It’s wrapped up in bows of joy and freedom (and if you’re lucky, silliness.)

I’m ALL for giving and receiving gifts like THAT this holiday season, how about you?

So, without further ado, my regularly scheduled Word of the Week with a surprise guest (or two):

My mother BEGS Duane not to make silly faces in photos, but it appears that he was fairly well-behaved in this recording.

Unlike this:

14572913_10154170722811785_669021684145556842_n

Or, when dressed in our best for a recent wedding:

14650464_10154125592726785_3604304372099052349_n

No, life is never boring with Mr. Viola.

And I look forward to another ENTHUSIASTIC week.  How about you?

Love!
Brenda

Share This:

Compassion is FEARLESS (and the New WOW)

I had an “AHA” this week when I considered the connection between being fearless and being compassionate.

This was the springboard:

7ce070cd67383ab8f8cf1c9043871f32

So where does intolerance and judgment come from?

Yep. Fear.

So the next time you are faced with an ugly attack of intolerance and judgment, take a step back.  (This is what I am doing.)  Find within yourself the compassion that can ask (probably not verbally) “What are they afraid of?”

Too often, in my own life, when feeling the attack of the self-righteous or intolerant, I become defensive and argumentative.  

Oh, I also get insulted and appalled and equally self-righteous.

Why?

Because I’m afraid, too.

Aren’t we all?

That we are sometimes is a fact.  But what we vote with is our choice.

I go on a little bit of a rant about this, but I hope you find it encouraging as we head into a new Word of the Week:

Well hallelujah sisters and brothers!  I LOVE the word ENTHUSIASM.

(In fact, I’d rather you be flaming hot MAD at me than lukewarm.  Blech!)

What makes you feel enthusiastic?  Do some more of THAT.  Please tell me in the comments what trips your joy level into overdrive (because I think enthusiasm and joy are kissing cousins.)

Let’s have ALL the fearless feels this week – and my hope is that we enthusiastically count our blessings heading into the Thanksgiving holiday.

Be safe and enjoy!

xoxooxoox

Brenda

Share This: