Rules–what are they, who made them, who gets to decide and should you follow any or all of them.  I have been thinking about this a lot lately, and in fact, talked in a graduation speech about how we should not be intimidated by others people’s rules.  Of course, there are some we can’t get out of–getting a ticket for going over the speed limit, stealing from a store.  In essence, laws to which we will be held responsible no matter are thinking.  Then there are rules and ways of being that others establish but are made up by them based on there sense of what is right and what is wrong.  How does one decide if those ways of being are justifiable, make sense, and if you should follow them.  At times, others will decide you should follow them lest you hurt their feelings, or step outside of the bounds that they have established are “correct.”

I would like to offer this.  At times, you will hurt others feelings by not following their rules.  This does not mean that you have violated any code of conduct.  You will at times play games by different rules, so your boundary lines will be different but I can think of a lot of games that people play with different rules;  none of which are harmful to others (spades or what fun is, for example)

My suggestion:  decide for yourself what the rules are, your way of being and where the lines are drawn for you.  Authenticity is the name of the game–whatever that means for you.  You simply have to be willing to endure any consequences of your way.  You might find at times this will cost you loss of friendship, frustration,   and even grief.  And yet, you might also find that it will bring you new friendships, excitement, and enlightenment.

Be you!  

Simply Said

Hunger Games

If you haven’t had a chance to read or watch the Hunger Games, I recommend that you do.  yes there is some violence but the movie and book are not about that.  Thgere is so much to unravel.  I would like to focus on the part that asks this question:

How do you maintain integrity in a system that requires (and there is no choice) you to engage in behaviors that you think are wrong so that you can survive another day?

I am not going to write about it but I would love your thoughts about this?

What I do know, however, is that in someone way, we all do this to some degree everyday–

Simply Said

Aleph by Paulo Coelho

I am currently reading the book Aleph by Paulo Cohelho (if you haven’t read anything by him–do!)  He requires you to ask yourself a lot of questions.  In this book, he does not feel at peace with himself and the life that surrounds him.  He goes on a journey to see if he can recapture that sense of oneness with himself.  He notes that the search for peace has a price.  The question is are you willing to do do what it takes to be at peace.

All of us, I believe, want to live at one with ourselves—to be at peace.  However, we cannot do it unless we take time to reflect, question and act on the messages and signs we see around us.  And, yes, we do see them.  The question is do you pay attention to them;  or do you rationalize them away, finding a hundred and one reasons to explain why you think and feel the way you do—which momentarily makes you feel better and justified–but that ultimately return once again with more fervor.  When you have reconciled where you are, what you think and how you feel,  the signs of complexity and confusion disappear and peace returns.

Peace by definition is:  a state of tranquillity or quiet, freedom from civil disturbancea state of security or order within a community, freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions, harmony in personal relations.

Your question might be how do I attain peace in my life? In his book he suggests that it is only with “the ability to love, forgive and have courage on your travels” that will lead you in that direction.   I agree!—Otherwise, we are left with too much baggage that clouds our ability to see clearly and have a sense of calmness…oneness with ourselves and the world around us.  It is not easy, and does not end on one journey.  There will be multiple journeys–You must travel them, look into them, and let them go.  The past is that, the past–unchangeable.  The future is that, the future–unable to predict.  The present, however, you can control–it is constant, live.   The Aleph invites you to ask yourself, “are you where you want to be?”  If not, look inside, love a little bit more, forgive a lot more and have the courage to make it different.

Simply Said


I was watching Morgan Freeman last night on Oprah’s Master Class episode and realized that life IS what happens to you while you are busy making plans.  And if you pay attention to life, your dreams are more likely to come true.  He wanted to be an actor from when he was a young child and he stayed focused and listened for the signs in life that helped him become who he is today.

What I learned from Mr. Freeman:

1)  Do you really want your dream to come true.  If so, keep reading.  If not, go take a nap 🙂

2)  Identify something everyday to work towards your dream–and pay attention to the signs along the way.  What are they telling you?

3)  Be careful of Paralysis through Analysis—If you want to write a book, start one page at a time.  If all you focus on is the final product (and I am not saying to forego your vision)–you will become overwhelmed and pessimistic about the possibilities–Think J.K.Rowlings

3) Be open and cautious about saying NEVER.  I am currently in a job that I once said I would never do. It has been the best and most rewarding job I have ever had–(Thank you providence.–Fortunately I acted at the right time!–I listened)

4) Remind yourself that dreams change forms along the way.  You can’t be too overly specific while searching. Better said, if you are overly specific, at least be flexible to providence and the willingness to alter as life happens.  My sister wanted to give back to the world and help people feel better about themselves.  She is now a Pilates instructor helping many people not only become fit and healthy but using this as physical therapy for those that need it.  She loves it!  Being a Pilates instructor wasn’t specifically her dream.  She took risks along the way, did many things that related to giving back and, now at the age of 49 is one of the most well known Pilates instructors in Spain.

5)  Be patient, persistent, courageous and committed.  Without these things….your providence has the chance of prospering as much as winning the lottery.

FYI–Morgan Freeman became an ACTOR, from his description at the age of 50.

Simply Said

Attitude of Gratitude

Why is it hard to find Attitudes of Gratitudes at work?  I have heard on occasion that being “too” thankful can be seen as “brown-nosing.”  (First, I want to know why we call it brown-nosing but I will leave that to another blog posting.).  We must monitor how often we say things like thank you, well done, what an inspiration, cool or awesome.  Apparently, if we are grateful “too” often, we are not authentic and have ulterior motives.  Who decided this?

We have concluded that those things that “should” be done don’t warrant gratitude.  In essence, if the trash needs to be taken out once a week or reconciling the budget is due and these tasks are completed, a thank you isn’t warranted.  It was expected that you do them, hence no need for gratitude.

I would like to offer that we create a different approach.  One in which we are grateful much of the time. Everyone knows that positivity and appreciation instill positivity and appreciation.  Most of us aren’t expecting gratitude for the things for which we are responsible, and don’t expect praise and appreciation. And yet, it is also true that none of us like to be taken for granted.

A good friend told me last week that none of us are promised to be here tomorrow.   Think about how often you are grateful for those around you and the work that they do.  Do you have an Attitude of Gratitude?

…thank you for reading my post…

Simply Said

Changing Habits

I completely missed last Monday’s blog posting,  In fact, i didn’t even remember until Thursday that I hadn’t written one.





Wikepedia defines Habits as:

routines of behavior that are repeated regularly and tend to occur subconsciously.  Habit formation is the process by which a behavior becomes habitual.  As behaviors are repeated in a consistent context, there is an incremental increase in the link between the context and the action

How do we go about changing habits so that they become subconcious…automatic.  Here are five easy  steps you can take to make it happen.

1.  Enlist someone else to hold you accountable and to help you remember.  Although your habit change should be for you and because you want to change it, not for someone else. And because you believe it will enhance your life.

2.  Write it down–on a post it note, your calendar, the mirror in your bathroom.  It doesn’t matter where–except that you must see it without having to look for it.

3.  At the beginning, it might be wise to pick a scheduled time to change the habit.  While flexibility is good, it makes it harder to change the habit.

4.  Identify ways to celebrate the success of your habit.  For example, you might want to set a goal that says, “when I am successful for three months, I…., whatever it is that makes you feel rewarded.”

5.  Give yourself a break if you make a mistake.  Everyday is a new day.  Just because you mess up, doesn’t mean you can’t begin again.

Simply Said

Playing Politics

play politics; defined

a.  to engage in political intrigue, take advantage of apolitical situation or issue, resort to partisan politics,etc.; exploit a political system or political relationships.
b.  to deal with people in an opportunistic, manipulative, ordevious way
Why do we do this?  From my perspective it is exhausting, lacks transparency, is dishonest, and requires you to be someone you are not.

Play office politics without getting dirty is an article that I only half agree with.  From my perspective the first part of this article is all about power, control, and self-advancement.  There is no commitment to a collective effort of the work or movement of the organization.  At the end, it tells you that somehow you can “play politics” with integrity–not sure about this statement.  And that, ultimately if you must change your entire self, then perhaps the organization isn’t for you – that is about all I agree with.

What’s my point?  I have found that my success, and I do believe I have been successful in my work, has not come from playing politics.  My success has come from sharing my agenda, my thoughts and opinions, uncensored and with authenticity, i am trusted and believed.  I am not viewed as someone with ulterior motives.  Certainly one should be tactful and respectful in the way you share —-Of course, many will tell me that i am unrealistic, naive and the list goes on.  I say, you can decide to be and make it different.  You can play the game or change the rules of the game–it is your choice.

Alas, however, we are a society of playing politics, creating strategies to win, making sure we don’t disclose our strategies or risk “losing.”   I would like to advocate for something different.  Full disclosure in an attempt to move forward collectively and inclusively.  Leave the game-playing to the sports industry.

Simply Said