Dear Mr. President,

We have never met. And I am willing to bet we never will. It's not my practice to belittle or demean anyone, but, gee whiz, sir, that seems to be all you do.

You are a big deal and you need to respect that if people are going to respect you. Leadership is a responsibility. Please take it seriously and think about what you say and how you say it. I hope I am not too late, with the North Korea thing going on, but I still had to say, please, please, please try to:

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New, True, and Beautiful story

Maybe this is a tool you can use. I am printing a bunch for myself because I need to PLAN! So many things to do...so little focus.  Am I alone here?

I found my calling again this weekend at the Daring Way Midwest Conference. A room full of love and energy and inspiration. Throughout this time together, I reminded myself of my true purpose: To help women live and create with self-compassion.

I am working on becoming more vulnerable and sharing my wisdom - yes, miles on the tires wisdom gathering - with a PLAN. Your will be seeing more of me....Get ready.

How about you? What's your big scary PLAN to live with PURPOSE?

You can let me know that you want a PLANNING PAGE for your office - or your refrigerator - by email and of course, you can call me to help you love yourself through your new, true, and beautiful story anytime. 

Kathy@KathyLarsonCoach.com

https://drive.google.com/drive/u/0/folders/0B7p9IMFxojPWQjMtT1RzZUVXaEE

My Passion is Karen Putz

 Buy this book by Karen Putz.

 Buy this book by Karen Putz.

Last year, at a writer's seminar, I had the joy of meeting one the most remarkable and passionate people on the planet. Yes..the planet.

She was writing a book about passion. She knew a lot about the topic. Karen began barefoot water skiing in her forties - even though she lost her hearing in a water skiing fall decades earlier. She never let go of her passion and has followed more dreams than most of us can claim.

You might imagine my surprise (WHAT?)when she called to get my take on passion and even greater surprise when I saw our interview (ARE YOU KIDDING?) in her now published book, Unwrapping Your Passion: Creating the Life You Truly Want . 


Chapter 19

When Passion Wanes

“If you have the courage to begin, you

have the courage to succeed.”

~ David Viscott

When was the last time you had a spark?

When was the last time you had a change and it was wonderful for you?

Those are the questions life coach Kathy Larson uses when exploring a client’s desire for a life of joy and meaning. Kathy trained with Brené Brown, and she is a certified Daring Way Facilitator and Life Coach.

“Most people are looking for their next thing,” says Kathy.

“They’ve had some awakening, a breakthrough. They get to a point where they say, ‘Enough of this crap! This isn’t working. I need help!’ They realize they need something different. That’s the starting point.”

It comes down to what you value, Kathy explained. What do you value? What are you about? How do others describe you—does that fit with what you know to be true about yourself? Dig deep enough into your values and you’ll find your passion.

“Passion is a deep sense, almost like a longing. It’s something that’s really, really hard to control—it’s strong—almost like a yearning, a strong feeling that pulls you. It will grab your attention. When you find and define your passion, you can’t ignore it. It’s a love for something so strong you can’t let go of it.”

“I believe we are born curious,” Kathy explained. “We are born seekers. We are figuring out how to be alive—and our purpose is to learn and discover from that curiosity. When you are clear about your purpose, you can move ahead to fulfilling your purpose with passion. Your passion creates connections in the world.”

“But,” I asked Kathy, “what happens when passion wanes? What happens when we lose that spark—how do we get it back?”

“With passion,” Kathy replied, “many people find it during a crisis. ‘Fight or Flight’ is turned on. When there’s a crisis, that’s where we will stand in our strength. And there are times during our life when we step into our purpose, fulfill it, and move on.”


There you have it... 

Memorial Day

How has this day transformed from sunburns, sand and laughs to another hurried and extra day to get sh*t done...like laundry, for instance? As a child, Memorial Day was always the kick off to summer. The pool was open. The fresh green grass welcomed bare feet.  The beach beckoned. We debuted our new bathing suits and greased our pale bodies with baby oil. 

Now, there are sunspots and the regular trips to the dermatologists. Hats and long sleeves. Sunscreens with SPF 50.

And....THE LIST.

I awoke this morning to the rumble of THE LIST in my head. The dogs were dancing and anticipating their walk. The cats were howling and demanding full bowls. I pulled on my jeans, and still in a stupor, began to hurry. I had a VERY BIG LIST.

I stepped outside and left the house with two leashes in hand. The dogs tugged and gave me no choice but to follow. I took a deep breath and smiled. There was no sand but there was beauty. I didn't hear laughter but I felt great joy. There was only breath and the scents of flowers and newly mown grass.

I revised THE LIST as I ambled and the dogs sniffed and did what dogs do. By the time we headed back home, the most important things - the only ones, really -  that needed to get done were now at the top:

  1. Bask in the beauty that surrounds me.

  2. Embrace the path without resistance.

  3. Breathe.

  4. Exhale.

  5. Work.

  6. Repeat. Every. Damn. Day.

How's your list? You may want to take a walk today...Happy Memorial Day!

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Your Wild and Precious Life

My favorite poet, Mary Oliver closed her poem “The Summer Day,” with a challenge:

Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

That is the question, isn’t it? The same question. Every damn day. What is the plan? Is this the life I want? After years and years of asking the questions, here’s what I know about that:

Your wild and crazy body, mind, and spirit drives your bus. If you don’t grab the wheel, you can’t know where you’ll end up.

So, let’s explore this. I know that you don’t have to think about becoming alive every morning. You just are. You don’t have to think about breathing. You just do. (We really don’t need to mess with bodily functions to continue this path of reasoning, do we?)

The thing is that those are processes we need to survive. Living? That’s something far juicier.

We get to take bites of the forbidden fruits of fun and excitement and fear and love. If we want to live our wholehearted and magical life, let’s begin our days with “Why not?” instead of “Of course not!”

Wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. It means cultivating the courage, compassion, and connection to wake up in the morning and think, “No matter what gets done and how much is left undone, I AM ENOUGH. - Brené Brown

Yes, you are. So what will we do to fire up the bus, plan a new route, and drive towards your wild and precious life?

These are the last days of April and National Poetry Month. I thought you would enjoy reading Mary Oliver’s entire poem. Namaste.

The Summer Day

by Mary Oliver

Who made the world?

Who made the swan, and the black bear?

Who made the grasshopper?

This grasshopper, I mean-

the one who has flung herself out of the grass,

the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,

who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-

who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.

Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.

Now she snaps her wings open and floats away.

I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.

I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down

into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,

how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,

which is what I have been doing all day.

Tell me, what else should I have done?

Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?

Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life?

A Self-Compassion Exercise

It's the end of the month. Where did the time go? And - Where did the money go? Calm down. Let's be wise. Let's take care of body and mind with breath and kindness.

"Easy for you to say, Kathy," the Gremlin says. "I can do this. I have been here before." Kathy responds. "Well, stupid. Why does your money fear return, then?" Gremlin says. "Gremlin, I don't have fear of money. I am simply human." I say.

Yes, we are human and our real fear lay in the fear of the unknown. What if I don't have enough? Food, heat, gas, clothing, television - well, we don't really need that - or shelter?

My guess is, for most us, that ain't gonna happen. That is, unless there is a true disaster caused by fire, wind or water. chances are we won't lose everything at once. So again, the Gremlin says, "Easy for you to say." Well, actually it is easy for me to say. About twenty-five years ago, I had to give up my home, my business, my savings, and my great credit score. I was forced to learn that losing everything was bad, but just because that happened, it didn't mean I was bad. I had to learn to think differently.

I had to learn to be self-compassionate.

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I wasn't a bad person...A bad thing happened to me. That's a BIG difference!

Now, the most important part of that story is that because that happened, and that I still make mistakes (no kidding!), I learned how to help myself and others practice self compassion.

Try it:

Take a breath.
Let go with a long exhale.
Now, repeat to yourself:
May I be safe. 
May I be peaceful. 
May I be kind to myself. 
May I accept myself just as I am

Remember: This is all we really need. Belief in ourselves and our common humanity. Money can't buy it. You need to believe it. Namaste.

Wowza!

I just got off the phone with a world shaker, my coach for the next six weeks. How do you know when you are with a World Shaker?

  • She is fearless.  It takes courage to get people to look behind the story they are telling themselves. My story was that no one needed to hear my story. But guess what? I am reminded that our stories are what form us! As human beings we are in the business of sense making and reflecting back before we jump forward. It’s what we do with our coach.
  • She is fun. Laughter is an icebreaker of the highest form. We take things way too seriously. I really know this because I am a Self-Compassion Coach. Sometimes the most compassionate thing we can do for ourselves is to laugh at even the most bleak, complicated and seemingly hopeless situations.
  • She’s smart. There is an art to knowing and asking permission to share. When someone shares before checking in, she is usually armed with assumption. “I am going to tell her this because she probably doesn’t know it.” That ain’t fair. Being smart is to give credit generously for the other person’s life experience and to look for places where yours intersects.

So, thank you, Coach. You shook my world free of fear and confusion. It was fun and I am armed and curious to meet the week ahead!

Good stuff this coaching thing…

Hello...Is that really you?

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could always show up as your true self? The one that’s tired, joyful, energized, scared, confused, hurt, excited, celebratory, accomplished, curious, bored, slow, fast, hungry or any other human condition feel at any time on any day.

I was reading an interview with David Letterman today as I sipped my morning tea. I drink strong black tea with lots of sugar and coconut milk. I talk a lot about healthy eating, but the truth is, I love caffeine, raw sugar, and tortilla chips. That even sounds like a meal to me.

Back to Letterman. If you remember, he was always self-deprecating on his show. His “What do I know and what does it matter” routine served his TV persona well. In this interview, and now that he’s retired, he’s still the same way. There’s a crabby old guy, but with humility now. He still made me laugh. And he wasn’t even trying. Letterman is real and vulnerable.

In my job as a coach, I am always looking for that person. That’s who I want to share space with...the person that is really there.  So, please:

  1. Be Honest. I won’t judge you. Not my job description.You can learn to speak freely. You will be safe just tell me what’s going on right now.

  2. Pay attention to your assumptions. Phrases like, “This is what is going to happen,” are for fortune tellers.

  3. And then there are interpretations. “When this happened before, I lost my job, so, I know that I am going to lose this one, too.”

  4. Stop judging yourself for feeling this way. Popeye says, “I am what I am.” You are who you are. I want to know you.

  5. Be vulnerable and courageous. Show up as your authentic, tired, joyful, energized, scared, confused, hurt, excited, celebratory, accomplished, curious, bored, slow, fast, hungry or any other human condition and don't allow anything to prevent you from showing up.

You don’t have anything to prove...you are fine just the way you are.