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inspired choice?

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  • Ready to make an
    inspired choice?

    Get my FREE guided meditation
    and start your journey.

  • Martha did WHAT?

    A few days ago, I woke up early and was scrolling NY Times articles and came upon Martha Stewart on the cover of Sport’s Illustrated. WOW! I was definitely intrigued to say the least. Why? What? How? Reading about her mindset around doing this at 81 was fascinating and inspiring.

    Now, I am not in my 80’s but lots of folks I speak with, particularly women, including myself are noticing and focused on what getting older means. There are so many ways to experience aging.

    The experience of the passage of time in the body, mind, and spirit. Such as:

    • Living the way in which one feels rather than by the year of their birth.
    • Fighting it with cosmetic surgeries.
    • Resistant attitudes- which deflate rather than enhance a sense of self.
    • Staying active, eating healthily in order to remain as physically flexible as possible.
    • Doing the same to stay mentally and spiritually flexible.

    To name just a few.

    Martha, if I may call her Martha, had some interesting answers to both serious and frivolous questions. My favorite:

    “Are you posing in a swimsuit to counter an image that once seemed starchy, even downright intimidating? Are you rebranding?

    No, this is part of my ongoing self-creation — I call it education. One of my mottos for many years has been, when you’re through changing, you’re through.”

    Martha, I totally agree!

    My motto: Enjoy every day. If that’s a stretch, find one thing, one piece of art, one tree, one comment, one article, one cartoon, one person that inspires you.

    If you’re feeling self-critical, reframe. Instead of something you don’t like, find one attribute you do appreciate.

    Decide to have a positive moment. They add up.

    I’d love to know your ideas of how you bring change, growth, or simply a feel-good moment into your day, into the process of changing, or the process of aging.

    Sometimes it’s a struggle but embracing the moment keeps me feeling ageless.

    Find another meaningful article quote, my thoughts about it, and the NY Times link below this fun image of Martha and me.

    “I can do this. I don’t have to give into convention.” 

    Martha’s quote is a great reminder that we shape our own journey by exploring new possibilities, embracing change, and defying the stereotypes associated with growing older. When we approach each day with a sense of purpose and a willingness to break free from expectations, we are free to celebrate the richness of our experiences. 

    Photo: Liz Goll Lerner with Martha Stewart. It was lovely to have Martha share her pearls of wisdom on life during this Carnegie Hall event a few years ago.

    Click here to read more of Martha’s interview.

    How to Make an Inspired Choice

    So many people have experienced change over the past year – myself included. From scary medical procedures to moving cities. So how do we all remain resilient in the midst of major upheaval whether it is personal, familial, governmental, or cultural?

    For me, and what I teach all my clients – coaching, psychotherapy, and corporate – is that when we begin to feel like a leaf in the wind, we are sunk. That’s not the good part, the meaty part. That is the human condition. So, what to do about it? Here’s a tip that is part of my QPT® (Quantum Presence Technique) process and is a quick way to get centered.

    1. Breathe and put your attention on your feet.

    That’s what I do, and that’s what I teach because it’s impossible to handle any stress, big or small, if you are not present in your body. Putting your attention on your feet and breathing is a shortcut to getting back to home base- You, your own body.

    Emotion follows thought.

    Have you ever noticed that when you have a seed, just a little seed of information that is or could be true, suddenly the brain is off and running with a story about it? Depending on your inclination that could be scary or wonderful. Either way, it is just a story.

    It is not true because it has not happened. You notice I didn’t say “happened yet”. That’s because there is no yet under these circumstances. We actually have no idea what is going to happen.

    When we are present in our bodies, we are not being run wild by our thoughts and the emotions that follow our storyline. We can actually make a clear choice about who we are and what we want to choose to feel and do in the moment.

    2. Make an Inspired Choice

    What makes an inspired choice? The first is step is # 1 above. When you are experiencing presence, full embodiment, you are connected mind, body, spirit, and heart. You realize that you are safe in this moment and that you have come into your body fully with your attention and your breath. You may have a sense of solidity, of feeling grounded, connected to the earth. It comes from having made the decision to be still and notice that gravity is holding you steady. Your intention is all you need to experience the pause that allows you to make choices from your true self, unimpaired by extraneous thoughts.

    From this position you can activate the ‘you’ ‘you know is there. The ‘you’ that is not a leaf in the wind. The ‘you’ that you can depend on. It is the same ‘you’ that you’ve depended on when making important decisions, helping someone in crises. All aspects of you working together to take your next step. That is how an inspired choice is made.

    Try it. Let me know what happens. Is there more to this? Of course, but this is a great place to start.

    For a bit more guidance, click the video below:

    It’s Election Day Let’s Stay Centered

    I get a lot of emails. I delete a lot of emails, but this morning I woke up super early. Since I don’t usually wake up at 4am, I felt like something important was needed. So, first thing, I meditated with the intention of being a participant in creating balance in myself, humanity and our beautiful planet.

    I opened my email and there was a newsletter from Nick Ortner’s The Tapping Solution. I didn’t delete.

    He spoke about the fact that some percentage of the US population will be disappointed, once the tally is eventually in on who the next United States president will be.

    Along with using our one vote to assist in the evolution of our country, he spoke about the fact that we have  only one vote for ourselves as well. He shared an uplifting video about how to have clarity on what you want to manifest in your life and for the greater good. I was interested in what inspired him  and I am sharing the link below in case you are too.

    How we go forward with elation or disappointment depends on us.

    We can stay centered if we are careful about where we put our attention.

    I love testing this out. If I am feeling stressed or focused on something worrisome, when I put my attention on what I actually can do instead of what I don’t have control over I feel better. Even feeling down can be shifted if we decide to focus on what we are grateful for…even just one thing. It could be as simple as a tree outside the window.

    Staying present in the moment, breathing deeply, meditating or using a meditation APP, getting outside for a walk, are all great ways to get centered and feel uplifted.

    But sometimes it’s really hard to shift the way we feel. Especially if it’s on the negative side.

    I have found tapping to be super helpful in shifting perspective in the moment and in the long term if you make it part of your routine. Melanie Moore in the UK who specializes in EFT-Tapping has shared several videos to guide people through tough times. These can be a resource to handle emotions that come up during these unpredictable times.

    So, after you vote, feel proud to have made your voice heard!

    And then feed your soul with an inspirational video of your choice.

    See what inspires Nick Ortner by clicking here.

    He also offers Tapping 101 in case you’ve never tapped before, click here to access Tapping 101.

    Tap along with Melanie Moore:

    Click here on feeling worried or desperate.

    Click here on feeling isolated (COVID related).

    Click here on creating a great day.

    With love,

    COVID Loneliness-An Unexpected Challenge

    Loneliness during COVID-19 has become an unexpected challenge for many. Even if loneliness was never previously a concern  for people surrounded by friends and family, or  for people who have lived alone for years without discomfort, it seems to be one now.

    I’ve been speaking with clients, friends, and family and have even experienced it myself. There is a difference between simple aloneness and COVID-19 loneliness.

    What is this about? Why is it different?

    Some say it is the unknown. The uncertainty about when things will get back to normal can cause feelings of disconnection. Some say it’s about how they personally are handling the experience. For example, some have said they simply feel left out because they’re being more cautious. Some report they haven’t reached out enough and that’s why they’re alone more than they want to be.

    The feeling of loneliness is difficult because often it can seem like nothing really helps — or only helps for a bit. For example, talking with a friend is uplifting in the moment but the relief doesn’t always last.

    What tends to have a longer loneliness-reducing effect are activities like taking a walk outside, which can truly shift our mood if we take in our surroundings and breathe in the fresh air; or working on a forward-moving project like de-cluttering, which shifts us into an active state, which is super helpful, because it gets us doing rather than moping.

    What’s also different about COVID-19 loneliness is that there’s not only a sense of separation, but actual separation — and that real separation from others can really amp up feelings of loneliness.

    Groups that used to get together in person may still do so but more infrequently on Zoom, and, given what is required to go out into the world, many people now simply find it easier to stay in.

    In short, it’s the complexity of sustaining contact with others, combined with the fact that it’s so difficult to be spontaneous and spur-of-the-moment, that makes COVID-19 loneliness so different.

    Here are a few tips that may help you or someone you know feel more connected:

    1. Respect for how people are managing their safety during COVID-19 is a top priority but communication is the key. So, don’t assume what someone else’s COVID-19 contact rules are and rule them out of an invitation to a group get-together. Check it out with them. Their rules may have changed, or they may have found a way to feel safe and still participate that is mutually respectful of you and your other guests.
    2. If you tend to invite-only couples or only singles to certain get-togethers, consider mixing it up. Your single friends may appreciate an evening or afternoon invite during this time even if everyone else is coupled up, and couples may enjoy a break from the couples-only get-togethers they are likely typically invited to attend.
    3. Don’t assume that all your friends or relations are doing fine because you haven’t heard from them. Reach out. Find out what they are up to. Maybe they’ve discovered some fun COVID-19 safe activity, or maybe they could really benefit from a conversation pick-me-up right now.
    4. Send friends, family members, and/or associates you haven’t reached out to for a while something that lets them know you’re thinking about them — getting flowers, an ecard, or even a voice memo can literally make someone’s day and keep them uplifted for longer than you might imagine.
    5. Invite your friends and perhaps their whole family out for a hike, paddle, or other active outings. Creating shared memories through these types of experiences feeds our connective tissue.
    6. If you’re feeling isolated, get involved in safe volunteer activities or with community action groups. The added benefit is the consistency of contact with others these types of opportunities naturally provide.

    Giving of ourselves is the most enriching way to feel we are part of a greater whole. And you never know- you might just change someone’s life.

    Create Aliveness in the Holiday Season

    The most transformative moments in our lives are those moments when all of a sudden something important is illuminated.

    When we have those big Aha’s!

    The trigger could be a simple or profound insight, or a life-changing event – like a birth or a death, a marriage or a divorce – or the trigger could even be an experience like the one we might have standing on top of a mountain for the first time.

    What we are feeling is ALIVENESS!

    And it is in these trigger moments, good or bad, that we actually are the most alive. We feel a certain type of energy in the air. We feel the skin on our body and the beating of our heart. We feel totally connected.  We are present in the moment. It’s electric – it’s what some call a peak experience. Because in those moments and during those life events we know we are really HERE! It’s visceral!

    And that’s just it, we feel these peak experiences so intensely because, during them, we are smack dab in the middle of the power of life.

    What’s happening the rest of the time?

    We’re still alive, of course, doing our thing, going through the motions, perhaps even fairly consciously.

    But what if every moment in our lives or at least lots more of them felt just as electric as a peak experience? What if we were fully tuned in far more of the time? What if we could have that heightened “electricity-in-the-air experience” all the time?

    I remember when my son was born. We were given a book titled “On the Day You Were Born”. It showed every aspect of nature, on our own planet earth, and our own planet in motion with everything else –  the entire universe. And all of it was welcoming our baby into life … into the world, into the motion of everything … into the flow.

    It was such an exciting feeling to see these connections so clearly in that pivotal moment.  We are all part of the flow. We ARE the flow.

    Everything is connected, and everyone affects all things at all times.

    Those momentous peak experiences simply remind us of this fact. But in reality, we are always in the flow. And even more, we are directing it all the time.

    We just don’t know it or notice it.

    But here’s the thing:

    We DO have the ability to be present to that connection daily. And WOW! What an opportunity that is.

    To wake up, grab our life force, and really show up in our lives. No matter what we are doing. To take off the filters that cloud our connection and, with the intention of being fully present, step into the aliveness of the moment.

    And intention is all it takes to begin to learn how to feel that aliveness every day and to learn how to keep that feeling going.

    Here are some simple ways to practice …

    Right now, as you’re listening to me, notice if your brain has taken you to the next item on your to-do list, taken you away from being where you actually are in this very moment. Are you here? Or are you thinking about what’s next? Or what happened earlier today?

    In order to be present in this moment, I’d like you to do a quick experiment. First, find your feet. And put all of your attention/concentration in your feet. Feel them. I’m doing it too. Second, Feel your feet connected to the floor or ground. And now BREATHE … breathe all the way into your feet … and, as you do, feel your breath move through the rest of your body.

    Perfect! Thank you for doing that with me. You are now in your body. And once you are in your body you are on the road to being present.

    The more you breathe into your feet and feel that you are actually connected to the earth, the more the rest of your body will start to show up too. Because what you are doing is taking your energy and attention out of your head and bringing it home into your physicality – into your physical being … into the present moment. And it only takes a minute.

    Once we are in our bodies we can really see where we are. Our focus is fully on what is around us, our vision is zeroed in on the now.

    Our culture makes multi-tasking seem attractive, but when we are doing one thing and thinking about another, or doing multiple things at once, it’s pretty hard to breathe and be in your body … and, therefore, it’s difficult to truly feel alive or to simply enjoy the present experience of being fully engaged in a task.

    To build on the exercise we just did and help you become even more present, walk around the room you are in or, if you are outside, even better.

    First, connect to your feet, take a breath, and walk slowly forward. As you do, feel your footsteps … the bottoms of your feet connecting to and releasing their connection with the floor or earth. Then, as you walk, begin to name aloud or silently to yourself every object or being you see, taking each in fully.

    Really notice what is around, you …

    The lamp with the burlap shade, the wooden table, the striped cat, the woman with the red coat, the mirror with the gilded frame, the crazy patterned pillow, the tree fallen in the path.

    With every object or being you name as you walk, you will become more and more present to the moment, more and more grounded … feeling more and more alive.

    For those of you who feel anxious from time to time – this exercise alone is a great anxiety reducer. Again, just a few minutes spent doing this exercise will make a world of difference.

    We’ve all heard the phrase, “stop and smell the roses.” And most of us take that saying as a caution to slow down, to take the time to enjoy life, to stop doing too much. It might be just the ticket.

    It’s good advice at times… and it may sound a lot like what I’m talking about – but it’s not.

    And perhaps it’s not the most helpful advice for today’s fast-paced world or in times of real stress.

    We need to realize that at whatever speed we’re moving, no matter what is happening – good or bad – and regardless of how much we have on our plates, we can and need to be fully present and we want to feel fully alive.

    Aliveness has nothing to do with stopping. It has nothing to do with how much we have going on. If we stop to smell the roses, we might not actually be smelling them if we’re thinking about what we have to do next.

    And in fact, sometimes the most alive we feel is when we’re moving at lightning speed …

    As long as we stay in the present.

    So, don’t stop and smell roses … instead learn how to get into the present regardless of how fast you’re moving or what is happening (and yes you may need to slow down to do that at first), but after you practice and learn it …

    Move fast, move slow, do a lot, do a little, take breaks, get back to it … and through it all … BE PRESENT … LIVE YOUR WHOLE LIFE IN THAT ZONE – fully connected, fully in the flow, fully alive.