How to Dissolve Ironclad Obstacles

eggs cooking in iron skillet

My intention when I began to dismantle massive clutter in my basement was to carve out a clean, comfortable spot to work during The Heat Wave That Never Ends. I didn’t expect to discover a metaphor for dissolving in obstacles in life. Most of the stuff in my basement was delivered by the movers. Fifteen […]

Stop Chasing Work-Life Balance. Look for the Red Threads Instead

three spools of thread red white and pink

While working on a project tentatively titled Five Fallacies About Work-Life Balance, I discovered a simple, powerful way to up your joy quotient in every domain of your life. It comes from Marcus Buckingham and Ashley Goodall’s new book, Nine Lies About Work. Instead of thinking of work and life separately, it’s designed to help […]

What Are You Growing?

garden of green plants with rust colored building in the backgrouns

Without really understanding why, I felt compelled to start volunteering one morning a week at a vegetable garden this spring. Learning, being outdoors, exercising, connecting with lovely people, all while serving an organization I care deeply about. I absolutely love it all.  So many lessons, not just about gardening, but about life. Transformation It takes […]

When Good Enough Truly Is Good Enough

curtains blowing from the breeze through an open window

This is the first summer in ten years that I’m happy, productive, and comfortable in my home office since I started using it – ten years ago. I complained for a decade that the insulation-free attic and southern exposure made my office freezing in the winter and stifling from late spring through Halloween, even with […]

Summer Reboot

firefly on orange flower with green leaves in the background

It’s funny how we tend to repeat the same patterns even after the circumstance that led to the pattern in the first place has ended. When I was teaching full-time, the first weekend of summer looked something like this: mostly passed out on the sofa for two days waking up long enough to take in […]

The Antidote to Psychic Pollen

bees and pussy willow catkins covered in pollen

It’s been a tough couple of weeks. Spring, in all its loveliness, is in full bloom: warmer days, constant birdsong, countless blossoms. And pollen. So. Much. Pollen. Its effects nearly led me to re-route from the grocery store to the E.R. last week, in spite closed car windows and humming a/c, because the pollen made […]

Start with What’s Right

bee flying with sunflower petals behind it

If you’re like most people, you’re really good at noticing what’s wrong. We’re wired to take in the negative. And how can you problem-solve if you don’t start with what’s wrong, right? Nope. We do better when we start with what’s right. Whine, Moan, and Complain Anyone who overheard the conversation among my colleagues and […]

Grow Resilience Like the Daffodils

There’s a townhouse a few doors down from mine that’s been empty for nearly all of the 15 years I’ve lived here. It’s kind of creepy, except this time of year, when the cluster of daffodils next to the front step burst into bloom in spring. Robert Herrick used daffodils as a metaphor for the […]

What Will You Do With Your Glorious Years

white birthday cake with one red candle and red flower

I’m going to a 50th birthday party later this week, and I’m pretty excited about helping the honoree to celebrate what Harvard Business School professor Howard Stevenson calls “the glorious years.” Mature and childlike, filled with wonder and wisdom, bursting with huge, infectious energy, this person makes 50 seem like the antithesis of old. Not […]

Good Over Perfect

broken seashell and blue flower

A key focus of my work in the world is helping people notice, celebrate, and grow the good without burning energy trying to pretend away the bad. Asking powerful questions is key to good coaching. Great for me, what with my tons of training and practice, as well as my natural, almost impossible-to-harness curiosity. But […]