Yes!! Change is in the air and all around us. I have changed my website.Take a look and tell me what you think, and give me any feedback for clarity or improvements.
I want to thank you all for reading my writing and for your feedback as I go forward. I want to write more frequently and while I will continue to write articles on health and wellness and life, I want to write more articles on spiritual wellness and share some of my story. So stay tuned and feel free to write to me and let me know what you enjoy about my writing and what you would like more of or less of. What are your biggest health, wellness and spirituality questions. Have a cup of tea and join me in this transition and in the meantime enjoy this article on CHANGE.
LIKE IT OR NOT CHANGE IS IN THE AIR
The most successful people are those who adapt to change, go with the flow, and use their creativity to become an active part of a changing world. Rigidity, a tight fist crossed arms have no place in a changing world.
Physically you can stand still and not move, but the universe is changing all around you. How you adapt to those changes will determine how you handle stress, loss, and adversity. Those who adapt to change and enjoy variety in life, do best when faced with a major shift in their routine. However, those who like to stay with a familiar routine, avoid risk, and like the security of staying where they are, can be quite frazzled when faced with an interruption in their routine that comes with change. And that means that those people will be frazzled a lot, since change happens all the time.
You may be stuck in your ways, but the world does not stay stuck. There are climate changes, technological changes, economical changes, changes in politics and changes in health care, AND WHO KNEW THERE WOULD BE A PANDEMIC?! Change occurs when we suffer a loss. This could be the loss of a job, or the loss of a loved one, or the loss of something as simple as the familiar way you watch TV now that we are in the digital age. Change also occurs when good things happen. It’s not all bad news.
There are people who change jobs every three years and there are those who stay in the same job for years or until they get laid off. If you can’t handle change a job loss can be devastating. I once lost a job and in my pocket was a message that read, “The universe is supporting your dreams and goals.” And that is exactly what happened. It was time to move on, create new avenues and grow. This is a time for contemplation more than strict planning or visioning.
If you are someone who finds comfort in keeping things the same, and has remained rigid about moving in a different direction, the world will pass you by as you stay in the rut that will feed your extinction. We like the familiar. It makes us feel safe. Venturing into new territory can be scary and trying new things does not come natural for many of us. However, like it or not change is in the air.
Here is an exercise I do with clients who are faced with change:
1. Take a deep breath close your eyes and then open them and look at your world.
2. Look around you and ask what you can do to make one change in your life.
3. If you could imagine yourself doing something different, what would you do? You might really enjoy this exercise. Nothing has to change yet. Just imagine.
4. You may have kept your creative juices frozen but now you need to thaw them out, get out the crayons and color your world.
5. What does it look like? Who are you? What do you need to do today to go with the flow?
Whether you like it or not something around you is going to change and the sooner you get excited about it, adapt to it, and become responsible in it, the sooner the world will spin in an ever changing, ever growing direction that can be delightful, freeing, and exciting.
My friend Janet and I with her red convertible. Notice the basket of wine and chocolate.
A friend of mine owns a red convertible. She got it over 18 years ago and it still looks great. She is now in her late 70s but as vibrant as her car. Her license plate is Joy 4 All, and she lives that every day of her life from her vintage clothes and hats, to her thoughtful gifts and notes. This friend recently lost her oldest son to early dementia so it’s hard for her to have that joy all the time. In fact, as she feels her grief and experiences her body aging, like all of us, she has occasional meltdowns. But not for long, for something will come along that not only delights her but delights someone else.
Recently one of her neighbors was celebrating their mother’s 94th birthday party. One of the things on her bucket list was to drive around in a red convertible. The son of the birthday girl was trying to figure out how to make this dream come true. He called several rental car companies to no avail. No one had an available red convertible for rent. He thought of borrowing one from a car dealer, but unless you put a down payment on the auto, you are out of luck. Then an idea came to him. He said to his wife, “ Doesn’t our neighbor own a red convertible?” Light bulb idea!!! He called my friend and said he had an out-of-the-box favor to ask. Could he borrow her red convertible? My friend, joyful as can be, thought this was a great idea and would be happy to let him use the car for the day.
On the day of her birthday, the son surprised his mother by picking her up in the morning for a day of celebration and driving around in a red convertible. She was so delighted and could not believe her dream came true. They had a day out to brunch, then took a ferry ride to Maysville and toured the home of Rosemary Clooney followed by a celebration dinner.
Later that day they returned the car, full of gas, with the utmost gratitude. My friend told me this story with a smile on her face -“Oh! It was so much fun to make someone’s dream come true!”
I have another friend who recently celebrated her 77th birthday in hospice. Two weeks ago she was walking my neighborhood and now has weeks to live due to a malignant and aggressive brain tumor. I went to visit her. It was 11:30 in the morning and there she was sipping a small bottle of Sutter Home Sauvignon Blanc. I said, “ Are you drinking wine?” I was smiling as I do love wine and thought, why not? Glad they let you have it here. I think I might want to do the same thing. She turned her head to me and said, “Yep! All day long-that and chocolate. What else can I do?” She explained that she chose not to have any treatment, but rather to take the path of palliative care, which assures comfort and allows her to spend what time she has left with her family and friends and enjoy her wine and chocolate. She said if anyone asks what to bring-wine and chocolate!
A group of us put a basket together for her. Each person contributed something based on the theme, wine, chocolate, and comfort care. We brought her a basket full of wine, chocolate, cookies, books, and more. I think she appreciated the thoughts as well as the things. She died about 10 days later at peace and surrounded by her family
One never knows how much time we have left to age and then to die. We don’t all have the same dreams or the same joys. We don’t all have the same experiences, but what we do have is a choice to live as full a life as we can and to be there when someone asks for an out of the box favor and to give with an open heart. It is healing for all.
It has been awhile since I wrote this and I want to add that we all should imagine just for a day that we are in hospice with only 6 months to live. How will you live those days? Angry? Afraid? At peace? Have you had those important conversations with loved ones and friends? Don’t wait to suddenly be told you only have weeks or months to live. We all are on a time line. Life is precious.
Enjoy these two interviews I conducted 6 years ago for my Blog Talk Radio show, The Middle Way Health. Now that I am retired these two interviews were even more meaningful to me today. If you plan to retire within the next 5 years, I highly recommend these books.
Retire With a Mission by Dr. Richard Wendel.
Listen to my Blog Talk Radio interview with Dr. Richard Wendel on Retirement. Dr. Wendel is a retired urologist who has both written the book Retire With a Mission and has given many lectures on retirement.
Your Retirement Quest by Alan Spector and Keith Lawrence
Listen to my Blog Talk Radio interview with Alan Spector and Keith Lawrence. Alan and Keith are retired P & G executives and enjoyed writing the book Your Retirement Quest and have given many seminars on retirement.
This is a photo of my niece and I at Brookfield Zoo. I love that we are holding hands, enjoying each other as we pass under this great sign that symbolizes the power of coaching.
Recently a friend thought she was being funny by joking about coaching, by asking, “Do you die if you don’t have a life coach?” At first I noticed I got a little defensive and quickly responded with the definition of a life coach and how we help people move forward with their lives by listening to what they really want, what they want to change, and serve as a partner and someone they are accountable to for their progress.
I thought about it later that evening and in a way, we really do help people to live, and sometimes we do have clients who feel there is a part of themselves that has died and they want to awaken in that area. Sometimes you just need a partner to remind you of your inner strength and power.
The other thing this friend said is, “ Well, I am a really good listener and I think I could be a good coach.” This is probably true, but it does take a special kind of person with skill, experience, and intuition to listen with a curious, non-judgmental mind, and then when appropriate ask powerful open-ended questions that allow our clients to gain a deeper perspective for the issues in their lives.
You may be a very good listener, and you may be a very good coach to someone, but it’s important to know that coaching is more than listening. Becoming a good coach, takes time in training, practice coaching, and is a continuing journey of learning how best to help people make choices in life without thinking we know what’s best for them or the answers to their deepest questions. As a coach, our role is to help our clients reach their greatest potential in their personal and professional lives.
As a wellness coach, I help my clients with lifestyle changes that enhance their health and wellbeing and reduce their risk of disease. We are still very much a life coach, because wellness is not just about absence of disease and living a long life, but being able to enjoy that life with a sense of energy, contentment, and inner peace.
Coach training programs are all over the world. The training can take years or months, but learning to be a great coach is a never ending. I am a member of The International Coach Federation, an organization of coaches that is working to standardize the profession of coaching. My coach training was with Wellcoaches, a coach training organization working closely with the ICF to collaborate on the credentialing process that assures that coaches are well educated and trained to help people “live” their lives and prosper to their fullest.
If you are interested in learning more about coaching feel free to call me 513-309-8377, send me an e-mail and visit my website.
Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I love cooking, I love eating, and most of all I love having family and friends together. This year we have all of our children with us. They are grown now and we have two granddaughters six days apart. Our youngest daughter is single and lives in Boston and she is with us this year too. It's wonderful.
The books in the picture are on my Thanksgiving table. It's fun and full of joy.
My sister from Chicago and her family will join us and the house will be full.
I hope all of you enjoy your Thanksgiving.