Tapping Into Your Well of Power

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In just a few hours I will be presenting my Resolve to Evolve talk at Beyond Rubies.

The swag bags are ready and though they don’t compare to the swag the Oscar presenters received, my hope is the value the participants receive will not be in the things themselves but in the experience.

I’ve known about this gig for months. I have presented this topic before but each time I’m different, the audience is different, and as the title of the talk suggests, the presentation evolves.

I tried to have all the materials ready for the presentation before I went to New Mexico so I could relax and enjoy my time there. But a funny thing happened on the way out west.

I started listening to some new material on being a charismatic presenter and tapping into the power of the lower chakras. The information blew my mind and totally revamped by talk.

So with just a few weeks before show time, I scrapped the original outline and started over.

Risky business, but I’m banking on it paying off.

The thing I’ve learned about taking risks – or leaps, as I like to call them – is that “the calling will always be absurd” to paraphrase Joseph Campbell.

When we’re called to do something daring and new and original, it will always seem risky. To others it may seem downright absurd.

But we know there is a truth to it that burns through the BS and compels us to take action.

Every time I get on stage in front of people, whether it’s 5 people or 50, there is a part of me that questions why anyone in their right mind would choose to do this for a living or even a hobby.

But when I am able to get over myself and into my audience, the magic happens. It’s not me naked on the stage or me attempting to calm myself by imagining them naked. (That whole notion freaks me out way more than it could ever calm me. Who ever suggested that strategy as a way to get over the nerves of speaking in public was seriously disturbed. Just saying.)

When I tell myself that the audience wants me to succeed and wants to hear what I’m about to present, it goes better for all concerned.

Today I’ll be sharing the small steps to consistently move life forward. And for the first time, I’ll be sharing a technique called tapping or EFT that I’ve found to be really effective.

I’ve known about it for years but never practiced it. But when the student is ready, the teacher appears. I tapped my way all across New Mexico and Arizona and will soon be tapping my way through three days in Boston at Margaret Lynch’s Ignite Your Power seminar.

Even though I don’t know how it works, I know it works for me. So I’m adding it to my toolkit.

Maybe because I’ve been getting acupuncture for the last couple of years, the notion of tapping into acupuncture points to activate change makes sense to me.  And possibly after years of attempting to use affirmations to affect change, being able to voice my fears and negativity first allows me to diffuse their potency and clear their power over me.

If you’d like to find out about tapping, you’re in luck.  This week you can join The Tapping Summit and listen to some great teachers for free and see if it works for you.

Okay, time to go own my throne and share some ideas.

What really calms me down is knowing you’re out there doing the same in your own way today.

Let’s go save the world, shall we?

 

 

Here to the New Year in Good Cheer – Have At It!

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Today’s tip in the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge is to start thinking about 2016 the way you would a dear friend who is celebrating a big birthday.

What can you recall about the year that made it so spectacular or noteworthy or different? Where did you go? What did you do? Who did you meet? What products or experiences changed how you do things?

Here’s a template you can use to think about the highlights of your year. I’ll share some examples from my year to get you started. Since it’s a long list, I’ll start with half the list today and finish up tomorrow.  Then on Friday I’ll provide you with a new (and different) template for Naming and Claiming what you want to create in 2017.

At the top, I’d love for you to give the year a name.  Maybe it is the same one you started the year with or maybe it morphed into something else as the year progressed.

For me it was The Stretch Year.  I ventured outside my comfort zone and made a couple of tv appearances, gave a few big presentations, invested in video equipment, and participated in coaching programs and challenges that stretched my vision of what’s possible.

Next, come up with six words to summarize the year. It will lend a laser like focus to the year. My six word summary for 2016 is “Leap and the net will appear.” If you don’t like six words, then change it to a theme song or a book or movie title. Just something that succinctly sums it up.

Where did you go in 2016?  Recall the places you went, the people you met, and the way these experiences changed you.

I traveled a lot early in the year. I wanted to go to Red Mountain Resort in St. George, Utah, for years. I finally got there in February. Of course, I wanted to move there immediately and work at the resort. This could be why I didn’t dare go there right after I bought my house.

In April I traveled to Austin, Texas, to a magical meeting of Martha Beck coaches and wanted to move there as well and live among the creatives.

In June I went to another art town, Savannah, Georgia, where my niece graduated from SCAD. Yes, I wanted to move there, too – but only in the winter.

And in August we took a very quick trip to Colorado for a family wedding. You already know I wanted to move there because “the mountains are calling and I must go” whenever I get the chance.

Who is your Person of the Year? If you happen to know him or her, great.  If not, that’s okay too. If you were inspired by several people, you can change this to People of the Year.

The Jake Arrieta bobble -head in my office and the stuffed Jake Arrieta plush toy I got for Christmas are sure give-aways as to my person of the year.

I embraced this Pilates-practicing pitcher for the Chicago Cubs as the poster guy for my How to Get Your Groove Back class because just a few years ago he almost gave up baseball for fear he had lost his groove. I figured if he could have such a phenomenal comeback, maybe I could too.

It really helped boost my credibility with the group that the Cubs went on to win the World Series (so actually the whole team qualifies for People of the Year), proving that it is possible to get your groove back in a remarkable way.

I also have to give a shout out to Nicole at Zappos. She completely restored my faith in customer service. Bob ordered a pair of boots for me as a Christmas gift that I needed to exchange. Or course the pair I wanted to exchange them for were a wee bit more expensive. (Okay, $50 more.)

“Not to worry,” Nicole said, “You know what? I’m going to do an even exchange. This is my favorite part of my job. I get to make these decisions and  I’ll send the new boots out tomorrow.  Just send the other ones back within 14 days.”  Happy Shoe Year, indeed!

What disrupted your life or changed life as you know it?  For better or for worse, what forced you to do things differently?  Hands down, Ruby O’Riley, the red lab puppy changed my life and disrupted my sleep patterns forever.

What were some of the biggest surprises of the year? These can be on a global level and a personal level. Did I mention the Cubs winning the World Series? Or the election?

On a personal level, running into 4 different people from my college years on 4 separate occasions in 4 different locations across the country and Canada was surprising. They reminded me of things I’d long forgotten and made me realize that even when I didn’t think I knew what I wanted to be when I grew up, the clues were there all along.

What were the biggest innovations or experiences that moved your life forward? What catapulted your career, your relationships, your health, or your finances to new heights?

My treadmill desk and standing desk continue to revolutionize the way I work. Creating a  How to Get Your Groove Back Facebook group along facilitating the Get Stuff Done 1×31 and Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenges forced me to learn technology on the fly. Nothing incites innovation more than publicly committing to do something.

Fiverr gave me affordable access to graphic designers. Mad Mimi and Publitas helped me automate some parts of my business that were beyond me until a few months ago.

The Gathering of Wayfinders conference in Austin and the Experience Product Masterclass I just completed changed my business model. Listening to TED talks and attending TEDx Naperville as well as participating in Brené Brown’s Daring Leadership and Leaders Rising courses kept me current on all kinds of topics.

They were also some of my biggest investments of time, money, and resources. Fortunately, they payed off in unexpected ways and unlikely connections.

What about you? What were your biggest investments? How did they pay off?

Epic failures are only epic if we don’t learn from them. What were some of yours?

I bought a lot of stuff I didn’t need in hopes that I would become a smarter, richer, younger, thinner, more confident, total badass version of my current self. I also had a challenging start to the school year that proved I have not begun to master the badass boss thing.

Okay, that should get you started. I’ll finish up with the rest of the prompts on Thursday. You can download the above worksheet here. This link will take you to Publitas where you will be able to download the worksheet by clicking on the download button to the left of the page. Or email me at penny@wellpower.com with the subject Year in Review in and I’ll email it to you.

I’d love to see what you’re coming up with. Share your highlights in the comments below.

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Here to the New Year in Good Cheer – Plan “X-Y-Z”

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It’s not that each of these letters aren’t worthy of their own plan in the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge. It’s just that I’d like to finish the whole alphabet plan this week so we can get down to business next week preparing to ring in the New Year.

Like a well-planned exit strategy from a job or a relationship or a location, a well-thought out exit strategy for the year will yield excellent results.

While you may yearn for a yacht, a yellow submarine, or a career in yodeling, you can’t get from zero to hero without a little strategic planning.

You may zig. You may zag. You may even zip around in order to convince yourself you are getting there fast.  But as Aretha once asked, Who’s zoomin’ who?” Let’s get real about what it’s going to take.

So after we have ourselves a merry little Christmas and make the yuletide gay, we’ll recap 2016. We’ll leverage what we’ve learned so we can leap into 2017 with every intention of 10Xing the results we can expect once we get clear on why we want them.

I appreciate you reading and working through the Alphabet Plan. All I want for Christmas is to hear how these tips helped you or someone you love through the holidays.

Please leave your comments below.  Or just pipe in and share how you are spending the holidays. What are your favorite traditions, foods, presents, places, or parties? I love learning from you and knowing what matters to you.

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P.S. If you’d like to trade in your fruitcake or other interesting gifts for a perfectly-sized Resolve to Evolve journal, just fill out the info below and I’ll send you one.  No need to send me the fruitcake in exchange though. 🙂

Here to the New Year in Good Cheer – Plan “M”

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My oh my, today “M” makes its mark on our memory as we mine, merge, milk, marshal, and maximize all the ways “M” words move us to take meaningful measures to minimize our stress. Manifesting merriment by mingling with macho men or molten hot mamas and  meandering near mistletoe are just a few of many methods to make it from Here to the New Year in Good Cheer.

Moving you to marvel in your magnificence and muster up the moxie to mix things up is what Midlife MacGyver is all about.

When others may be making mountains out of molehills and monkeying around with mayhem, my motivation is to help you maintain a mellow mood and stay in the moment. If that requires playing a medley of musical melodies, doing the maca-reindeer (yes, our disco dancers are back in a marvelous new video), making a mind-map, or manufacturing minions to help you with a myriad of mundane tasks, more power to you.

This holiday season, march to the beat of a different drummer or an entire mariachi band. Your motto might be, “If I don’t mind, it don’t matter,” and proceed to focus on what is magical, meaningful, and miraculous and magnetize it to you.

As much as I’d like to muse about moonbeams, movies, mojitos, money, and Machu Picchu, I must put on my mittens and motor on down to the Maquoketa River (not the mighty Mississippi) with my mischievous dogs.

Mosey on over and meet me in the comments below. Muchas gracias.

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Expect the Unexpected

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It’s Day 29  of the Get Stuff Done 1×31 Day Challenge. It’s hard to believe we’ve worked our way through 29 days of deliberately doing stuff we may or may not have thought about doing only a month ago.

Today’s challenge is to look back and write down three or more things you didn’t expect to accomplish but did this month. Yes, this is a both a feel good and a momentum building exercise to help you finish this challenge strong.

Has it been harder than you originally thought?  It’s been a challenge for me and I love to write!  I can’t imagine doing this in addition to my regularly scheduled life if it didn’t bring me joy or if the payoff was not worth the effort.

Last year during the challenge I decided to donate several items during a Fill the Truck campaign. Unfortunately, by the time I loaded up the items to take to the drop off location, the collection time was over.

Determined to drop off a car load of goods to someone in need, I found a homeless shelter that was happy to have my household items and blankets.

Since most of my things were for women and children, I had hoped to find to find a women’s shelter. As it turned out, when I arrived at the shelter, it was for men. Men who were hungry for a home cooked meal, some comfy blankets, and some kind words.

My initial apprehension quickly turned into admiration for these men who unloaded my car and continuously thanked me for all the items I dropped off. It humbled me and made me incredibly grateful for all I have and often take for granted.

And then things got interesting.

Bob and I stopped at a health food store on our way home where I found some fantastic greeting cards. One was perfect for my eating psychology coaching clients, so I emailed the owner of the company to see if I could order more. I mentioned that I was a writer as well and loved her creative card line.

The owner not only wrote me back but said she read my blog and wondered if I’d like to spend a few days in Miami Beach and try my hand at writing greeting cards.

I did not see that coming.

However, I totally embraced it, got on a plane to Miami Beach, and had the job offer of my dreams within 15 days of completing last year’s Get Stuff Done 1×31 Challenge.

The fascinating thing about the dream job was I hadn’t updated it in awhile. I never expected the fantasy job of getting to be a writer and live on the beach to need updating.

The unexpected reality was this. I was already living the dream

By working an ordinary job in an ordinary small town year after year, a different dream had taken shape.

In this dream I finally owned my own home, could afford to travel when I wanted, enjoyed the company of fabulous friends, regularly wrote whatever I wanted, walked my dog daily, and found a fireman to share it all with.

The great news is I got to write some cards and work with Cardthartic, one of the best card companies around. And I got to take stock of what I’ve got (See Day 15).

The most unexpected thing to happen in all of this was I decided to stay in Maquoketa,Iowa, of all places. Clearly not what I expected or anticipated ever choosing, if given the choice.

But a funny thing happens on the way to getting stuff done. New options open up.

This year it’s been all about welcoming new life into my world.  First with the fish tank. Second with the puppy.  And third with all of you.

My heart has expanded to twice its size this month. Thank you so much for reading and doing such an impressive job getting stuff done 1 x31.

As always, I’d love to hear what you accomplished or what unexpected things have happened to you this month it the comments below.

Here’s a sweet song for your playlist for today by Jamie Lawson.

 

How Does Your Garden Grow?

 

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It’s Day 17 of Get Stuff Done 1×31 Challenge and today’s challenge is to plant the seeds of an idea, a project, a goal, or a grand adventure and watch them grow.

No one was more shocked than me (okay, maybe my parents when they came to visit yesterday) to find these zucchinis and cucumbers growing like crazy in the makeshift garden Bob and I rigged up a month ago.

Growing up on a farm,the rhythm of planting and harvesting has been a constant throughout my life. It should come as no surprise that what we planted and dutifully cared for has come to fruition.

What is surprising is how much joy these veggies give me simply because they exist. Their transformation from a handful of seeds stuck in the mud to these enormous, edible specimens is nothing short of miraculous.

Too often I’m detached from all the hands that make it possible for the food I eat to end up on my table. I love frequenting farmers’ markets but often opt for the ease of the big box store that sells the same stuff regardless of the season.

During the eight months of my training to become a certified eating psychology coach, I thought more about food than I had at any previous point in my life. I noticed how it is grown, manufactured to last longer, distributed, stripped of its nutrients,  and “enhanced” to be more appealing. I paid attention to how much food we consume, waste, destroy, and produce. I became acutely aware of how we use food not only to feed and nourish ourselves but also punish and condemn ourselves,  hide our feelings, or protect ourselves from relentless stress.

The fact that I am growing greens on my own makes me confident that I can do just about anything I put on my Get Stuff Done 1×31 listif I give it some respect and attention.

What about you? What seeds have you planted either consciously or unconsciously over the past few weeks or months?  What signs of success are showing up in your world?

If nothing comes to mind, use your 5-15 minutes for today’s task to think about what you’d like to grow in your garden. And by garden, what I really mean is your field of dreams.

(I realize I can get away with the Field of Dreams reference because I live in Iowa, but I really do want you to grow your dreams.  Or at least something you feel is as fabulous as I feel the zucchinis, cucumbers, and soon-to-be-ready tomatoes and peppers are.)

What have you grown from a spark into something spectacular? I would love to hear what you are growing or see pictures of your bounty. Share your favorite gardening hacks in the comments below or email me at penny@wellpower.com.

 

Everyday Alchemy

 

Union du Soleil et de la Lune sur champ d'toilesIt’s Day 14 of the Get Stuff Done 1×31 Challenge. Today’s challenge is to transform the ordinary into the extraordinary.

While you may not be spinning straw into gold or base metals into unlimited riches, you do have the ability to turn an ordinary experience into an exquisite event.

“Surely this will take more than 15 minutes,” you protest.

Let me just remind you how quickly you have transformed a child’s playroom into a castle, a jungle, a campground, or a pirate ship with just a few props and an ample imagination.

If you’ve ever planned a party, a product launch, a promotional event, or an evening with the in-laws, you know that it all starts with the intent to create something spectacular.

While you may not be able to pull all the pieces together in 5-15 minutes, you can start making a list or sketching out a mind-map or making some calls to reinforcements in order to start the transformation.

Amazon’s 24 hour Prime Day sale is an example of how you can transform an ordinary day into something extraordinary.  What started last year as a way to celebrate their 20th anniversary and promote their prime membership turned into a global event this year that transformed an ordinary Tuesday in July into the biggest sales day on record, outselling Black Friday or Cyber Monday.

Of course there were thousands of details that went into the planning, promoting, and executing of this event, but it started with the idea to make something out of nothing, which is what I’m suggesting you do.

Normally I would not encourage much ado about nothing, but sometimes you’ve got to make your own kind of magic just because you can.

Maybe you want to start celebrating Financial Freedom Fridays to see if you can go without purchasing anything for one Friday a quarter.  Or maybe you want to practice Meatless Mondays where you venture into vegetarianism for a month of Mondays. Or try Tell-a-New-Tale-Tuesday where you rewrite your story with the happy ending you know you deserve. It’s all up to you to decide what you want to do.

Get Stuff Done 1×31 was just a challenge I posed to a few friends last year. This year we’re all in this together and I’m amazed at what people are doing.

How can you turn an evening at home into a something special? How can you make a meal into a memory?  How can you transform a birthday celebration into a brand new beginning, regardless of how old you are? What do you need to alter in order to experience the extraordinary that awaits?

We’re all everyday alchemists. Share  your secrets in the comments below.