“We spend January 1 walking through our lives, room by room,
drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched.
Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk
through the rooms of our lives…
not looking for flaws, but for potential.”
~ Ellen Goodman

I love this quote by Ellen Goodman because it stirs up unfinished feelings and thoughts in all of us. Longing, ideas, and “I should, but I’m too busy. I can’t , because I don’t know how. I’d like to, but how can I manage something like that?”

It’s amazing that most of us use only 10% of our potential. Where is the rest? Hidden in our fear? Dormant in our dreams? Buried in a “to do list” that doesn’t really even matter? After years of listening to clients, I’m convinced people know (some of ) their potential but it’s too much trouble to uncover the brilliance of their own true light. Decisions have to be made, changes need to occur, relationships may be affected, and most importantly — it’s uncomfortable to address our innermost desires, and then make a plan and stick to it, to make our dreams come true.

As we start the New Year, and you make plans for 2011, I’d like to ask you three simple questions:

  • Where are you now?
  • Where do you want to be?
  • What does your perfect life look like?

When answering these questions, be open for what comes up for you. Journal if you like. Chew on it a bit. No judgment. Be brutally honest with yourself and look at your life –every part of it. Then ask, “how is this serving me?” You’ll be surprised that sometimes the answer is “not so well”. Listen to your intuition. Part two of the question requires further thought. “And, what are you going to do about it?” If the answer is “nothing”, or a “hmmmmm” then it could be you aren’t willing to risk living at your fullest potential, for whatever reason (or excuse), and sometimes that’s OK for where you are in your life. I’ll be perfectly clear. Risk is involved if you want to change. That’s just part of the process.

Here’s the good news. We all have greatness. We all deserve to live in the light and share our gifts. If you are aligned with your true purpose then you are living in some way to serve – not always through your day job, but through your daily life. It all starts with a decision. To be more, to do more, to live more, to have a more amazing life, which in turn will help someone else along their path. It’s funny, one small gesture, or kind word, or phone call can be the catalyst toward making someone’s day a bit brighter – or can be a lifesaving comment to change how they look at the world. I’ve been witness to it many times, and it is humbling.

Your words and your actions are all dots that connect to a much bigger picture. When you aren’t being your glorious self, and living to your maximum potential, you’re not only doing yourself a disservice, but also not being who you were meant to be. You know those “tingles” you get? That’s your connection to what’s really happening in life. Follow those tingles, and your intuition, and take a real look at who you are now, and peek into the future of who you were meant to be. I can assure you, that you are way cooler than you ever thought you could be, and here to make an enormous difference in this world. I’m tingling as I write this now.

Happy New Year!

“A man without a plan for the day is lost before he starts.”
Lewis K. Bendele

Have you ever thought to yourself, “I know that I am meant to do this with my life, but with all the things I have to do, when will I have the time?” Sometimes, the real challenge is not finding your dream, but finding the time to dedicate to your dream. Our lives are full with work, family, friends, technology and more. De-cluttering your day may be just what you need.

De-cluttering your day is not a lot different from de-cluttering your closet or your desk. You have to go through all the ‘stuff’ (or in this case, ‘stuff that needs to be done’), get rid of the stuff that no longer serves you, and streamline/organize the rest. It may mean that you let go of obligations that no longer make sense for you. It may also mean that you let some things go.

Maggie was in a small, cozy book club. Several women from work got together once a month to have a glass of wine and discuss the current book. It was fun, but Maggie wanted more time to pursue her dream to paint. Giving up book club would not end contact with anyone in the group, so Maggie told her friends she would be moving on, to take a painting class. Her decision was met with complete support. “I was nervous that they’d be somehow insulted or hurt, but ‘the girls’ have cheered me all the way. They even came to my first art show in the city.” Maggie is on her way to earning a full-time income from her painting, and her friends are very proud of her.

Chores take time too, and they just won’t go away. I’ve checked, and there is no ‘laundry fairy’, but that doesn’t mean we can’t streamline things a bit. Start with the tasks that are your responsibility within your family, work, etc. Are your kids old enough to take on more responsibility at home? Maybe it’s time to delegate a few tasks at work to someone who would like more responsibility. If finances allow, it may even be time to hire a little help. According to Dr. Donald E. Wetmore, time management expert and author of Beat the Clock, “Hiring a college student to do routine tasks (grocery shopping, yard work, household chores, etc.) will free up as much as 20 hours per week for the average person to devote to more productive uses.”

Take a long hard look at how you use technology as well. Tell the truth — how often do you check your email? How much daylight are you burning on social networks and forums? It’s important to be in touch, but not to the point that you can’t get things done.

Spend some time this week paying attention to how you spend your time. Find those ‘lost minutes’, gather them together and use them for the important work that is your life.

Expect the best from people, situations and plans, and watch your attitude, your results — even your life — change for the better.

Expecting positive outcomes puts you one step closer to manifesting what you truly desire. Why not give it a try? Day by day, expect the best and know that you can have it all.

After all, don’t you deserve it?

Two weeks ago, I cleaned out my garage with a client who’s a professional organizer, and I told her how I’m making room for a convertible next Spring. We laughed a bit, but after a few giggles, and the look on my face, she knew I was serious.  We emptied out all kinds of boxes, and made several trips to the dump.  We measured the space where the car would go, and I told her how I made the decision to have  a jazzy convertible, and how I “felt” driving it, without it even being here.  We talked about the wind blowing in my face, described the kerchief on my head (and how the curls would look), and even talked “shop” a little on what kind of car I might like, perhaps an older model Mercedes, but I wasn’t sure of the color.

When I mentioned this “desire” and “subsequent clean up” to my Abundance Group the following week, a woman approached me with a smile. One of her friends who was a guest at the same meeting told me about her boyfriend who was selling his car, a 1985 Mercedes convertible, all restored, and ready for some “lovin”. I couldn’t help but smile to myself,  knowing that the “Big U” does listen.

Today, my new friends Bonnie and Tony drove the car from Maine to Boston, and I took it for a test drive. Naturally, I took a picture of the car  in my driveway. I even measured it to see if it fit in the garage. I smiled knowing that if you ask, if you listen, if you’re open to receive, you can manifest.

Manifest On, Big U!  Seeing it is believing!

Now, whether to buy. I’ve always looked good in red!

“Being an optimist after you’ve got everything you want doesn’t count.”
Kin Hubbard

Have you checked your general outlook lately? Do you catch yourself expecting the worst of situations? Do you have faith in others? It may be true that failure is a better teacher than success, but, it’s important to keep a positive outlook on life.

According to the Mayo Clinic, your outlook on life –- whether you are optimistic or pessimistic -– can affect your quality of life in many ways. Optimistic people enjoy longer lives, less depression and distress, higher levels of psychological and physical well-being, better coping skills, healthier hearts –- even a higher level of resistance to the common cold!

Have you noticed that people who are optimistic seem to get more done? Maybe a little part of it is because they live longer and they don’t get sick as often, but think about things like body language, tone of voice, vocabulary. When you believe that things are going well, it is reflected in your posture, the words you say –- even the amount of eye contact you have with others. And, because people tend to reflect what they get, your optimistic outlook ‘rubs off’ on them. When you believe in yourself, others believe in you too.

So, what can we do to increase our optimism? According to the pros at the Mayo Clinic, it’s important to pay attention to your self-talk. Do what you can to remain positive -– if you’re telling yourself, “I’ve never done this before”, remind yourself that you have an opportunity to learn something new. Give it a try, and expect a good outcome. Be willing to laugh at the situation -– or even at yourself. Surround yourself with positive people, and encourage others every day. Fuel your body with beautiful, healthy foods and clean water, and energize your outlook with exercise. With a little practice and a little time, you really can become more optimistic.

Listen to that self-talk this week. What are you telling yourself? How willing are you to step out from your comfort zone and try new things? Are you cheering yourself on, or talking yourself out of success before you even get started? Think about what you can do to increase optimism in your life. Spread enthusiasm, get lots of fresh air and look forward to all the adventures that await you.

Most of us work at least 40 hours a week, but our bodies (and minds) beckon us to rest.

Burning the candle at both ends can lead to burnout, so remember to take a break now and then.

Laugh, play, have a wonderful time — and come back refreshed and rejuvenated. You’ll not only find that you’re more productive — you’ll also have a sense of peace, and be ready for what life offers you next.

“The more you seek security, the less of it you have.
But the more you seek opportunity, the more likely it is that
you will achieve the security that you desire.”
Brian Tracy

Sometimes you’re just guided — to stop at a coffee shop and ask directions –to help a stranger in distress — to make plans with an elderly person who needs company — to get involved in a community organization and make a difference — to make a decision that will change your life. Life offers each of us endless possibilities. If you aren’t open to them, possibilities pass you right on by.

If you give yourself permission to be open to possibility — if you’re willing to stay open and stray from your ‘plans’ — you’re off to a great start. Add in being aligned — from head to heart — and I know for a fact , that amazing things can happen.

Opportunities abound. People show up just when we need their knowledge and wisdom. Life becomes different, without the usual struggle. With the right mindset and the knowledge that you truly do create your life, you can flip your internal switch at any time and propel yourself forward. I like to call it Manifesting on Demand®.  It’s not always instant, but it’s a process that works, and can be accelerated with practice.

Manifesting on Demand® means putting your desired outcomes ‘out there’. Think about what you really want and how it will make you feel. Put your dream down on paper… talk about it… hope for what you want and begin to expect it! When you’re in a good place mentally, emotionally, physically — feeling happy about realizing your dream — you are on your way. It may take time to get what you want, so place your ‘order’ today! Then, move forward with good intentions and a sense of gratitude that your dream is already being realized. It’s all about the feeling you have in the NOW and expectation that your dream is on its way — which it is! Positive thoughts and openness to possibility produce positive results. Find that positive, open place within yourself, then you are able to manifest the life of your dreams and it will be delivered.

This week, I’d like you to notice how open you are to possibility. Do you wake up dreading another day, or are you open to what the world has in store for you? Are you going to bed at night praying for rest from the madness, or are you creating the life you’ve always wanted? I’ve lived both ways and from my experience, the way to go is to be open to possibility, because there’s so much delight in the unexpected!

Live the life you deserve. Isn’t it about time?