A Matter of Balance: A Woman's Quest for Health, Harmony & Kick-ass Heels

Monday, November 26, 2012

Use your words!

The leftovers have been gobbled up, the Black Friday crush has thinned and folks are immersed in Cyber Monday surfing. We SAY we should keep the spirit of gratitude alive all year long, now as Nike says "Just do it."

I have actually been thinking about this for a few weeks now and have been jotting down lots of random things that come to my mind. These are things I always THINK of doing, but don't necessarily take time to make them happen.   Now I am slowly but surely taking action each day. 

Over the weekend I heard my sister-in-law say to my little nephew "use your words!"  And I thought, hmm, that's not such as bad idea!I I have always believed the old adage that 'actions speak louder than words,' and while I still agree, your words hold power too.

So when something I like or appreciate or am grateful for strikes me, I chose to take deliberate action. Turns out it takes practically no time at all!

For example here are a few of my efforts the last few days:
  • Tweeted to a producer about one of his movies I'd just seen (and how much I loved it).
  • Submitted a restaurant review on Trip Advisor of a place we enjoy having dinner
  • Wrote an email to an author whose book I just finished to thank her
  • Dropped a line to someone who inspires me with her example

My intention is to put more goodness and gratitude out into the world.   By no means do I wish or need any thanks or acknowledgement.  Expecting that would be a contradiction.  But, sure enough, when you put good stuff out there, it comes back tenfold. 

I received a beautiful reply today from someone I had emailed...and the last line speaks volumes:

 "Thank you, again, Kristen, words matter - and yours just made my day!"

Use your words.  They matter.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

What's on my list this Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Eve hanging with my buddy

Today is a day for giving thanks.  Though I believe every day should be a day of thanks.   In the US we gather for stuffing and cranberry sauce and football.  (Although the Steelers aren't playing today, I'll be most grateful if they get rid of those god-awful uniforms!) 

It's one of my favorite holidays since it's all about family and food.

In my newsletter this week I issued a challenge.  Make a list of 100 things you are grateful for (no doubt there's more, but write down 100).  Then take a deep long breath.  I made my list yesterday. 

Today also marks the beginning of week eight of my recovery from some unexpected and extremely intense surgery.  I have tried to practice gratitude through the process and have also had a few mega meltdowns along the way.

I am, however, especially grateful for two of the many gifts that have come from this experience.

Surrender and support.

It has been a challenge to practice surrender during this process. But I find when there's a lesson to be learned, life has a funny way of making sure we learn it.  

Also over the past weeks, the gift of support from family, friends, associates, customers, acquaintances and even strangers has been overwhelming and humbling. 

So on this day of thanks, on my 100 list (which just scratches the surface), I give thanks for the gifts of surrender and support.


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

What are you waiting for?

Last night I caught a glimpse of my husband putting a bottle of wine in the frig. Not an unusual sight. He does his best to ensure there's always a chilled bottle on hand.

We generally stick with low budget vintages, but this one was a bit pricier, purchased for a special event dinner a year ago, then set aside when guests brought bottles we chose to open instead. So I placed it back in the rack for the next special occasion.

It's kind of like the bottle of scented lotion I received as a gift from my dad on what turned out to be his last Christmas. I was saving it for a special occasion. Not that I can really think of a special occasion for moisturizing. I recently tossed it after nineteen years. The bottle was pretty darn dusty and the lotion....well not so good. 
Have you worn your nice lace undies lately? Served dinner on the 'good china' ? Dabbed on your luxurious perfume?

Are you waiting to start living?

As hubby nestled the wine bottle into the door of the frig,  I said " hey isn't that the special wine?" 

"Yes," he answered, "don't you deserve special?" 

I paused considering what a particularly rough day it had been.  Hell yeah, I thought!

"I guess so," I answered.
"Then what are you waiting for?" he asked.

Good question.

In fact, a random Tuesday night just might BE the special occasion!

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

4 Questions to get 2013 off to a roaring start

When I read Pamela Slim's latest blog, I was immediately exited to begin thinking about 2013.  Maybe some of you share the sentiment that I'm ready to put 2012 behind me!  I heard Pam speak a few years ago and was inspired by her energy and point of view.  

She graciously agreed that I could share her blog here.   I'm going to begin reflecting on these questions and invite you to do so as well.  Thanks for the food for thought Pam!

From Pinterest, originally found on charlestongirlblog.com

4 Questions to get 2013 off to a roaring start
 Pamela Slim, Cubicle Nation 

I love planning.

It could be a Virgo thing, since the smell of flip chart paper and new pens is almost as sweet as fresh leaves on a Fall day.

With November at our feet, it is a great time to start to plant some seeds for your 2013 career and business plans.

(You can read Pamela's blog, plus check out her newsletter and additional video here)

To do this exercise, I suggest getting nice and comfortable, and grabbing a paper and pen. Answer these questions:

I am at my very best when ...
What conditions bring out your very best work? What kind of work are you doing when you are kicking major bootie? What people bring out your best work? Without overthinking it too much, brainstorm the factors that bring out your best work.

From this list, circle one thing that you will AMPLIFY in 2013.

These things drove me crazy in 2012 ...
Have you been spinning around with the same annoying patterns in your head? Do you have any people in your life that make you nuts? Are you sick and tired of feeling sick and tired? Brainstorm the things that have really made you batty this year.

From this list, circle one thing that you will ELIMINATE in 2013*
*If this thing is a person, I am not suggesting homicide. Maybe something less dramatic like unfriending on Facebook.

I really want to make/do this in 2013 ...
Is there an experience you are dying to have next year? Do you want to run your first marathon, write your first book, have your first baby or make your first product? Brainstorm the things or experiences that you would love to accomplish next year.

From this list, circle one thing that you will CREATE in 2013*

*If "making a baby" is on your list, the homework is really fun.

Even during tough times this year, I appreciated ...
Even the most optimistic life coaches have really crappy days. Life can be hard sometimes. If you had a whopper of a year, what are some things that you appreciated as the proverbial doo doo was hitting the fan? Brainstorm the big and small things that kept you grounded in 2012.

From this list, circle one thing that you want to APPRECIATE in 2013*
*Since one of the things I have appreciated in 2012 is a plant, I am going to make sure to send waves of gratitude. I think plants have feelings, but you be the judge. 


With these four key elements you want to bring forward into 2013, now you can start to work on the nuts and bolts of planning your career or business. Stay tuned for more video updates on the topic, although I can't promise a musical intro to each one. Unless you request them, at which time I will be happy to comply.

Have fun!

Thursday, November 01, 2012

"Restoration WILL take time"

Taken from the window pre-Sandy as we began to batten down the hatches

These were the words said by our Mayor on one of the many voice mails left to keep us informed of the happenings of our City as Sandy left her mark. 

How true.  The devastation is unimaginable.  My heart and prayers go out to those who have lost and those who are still dealing with the many challenges brought by Sandy's aftermath. 

Amazing how it gives you some perspective.  No internet, or a few days of playing "Little House on the Prairie" are mere inconveniences compared to what many are facing. 

When I played the Mayor's message update for my husband, I said to him, I think he might be talking to me.

Restoration WILL take time. 

Today is a month since I've begun recovering from surgery and there's still a long way to go.  My doctor says it will be another two months until I can expect to get 'back to normal' whatever that is.   I had begun to get a bit discouraged with this lengthy healing process, but then I remember, it's all a mere inconvenience....restoration WILL take time.

Blessings to all those who are beginning the recovery and restoration process!