The Year of Love

Last night a big number rolled over in the calendar. As the new year started I found myself sitting on my couch starting to have a pity party for one. Then I remembered that being alone on this day was actually my choice. I was offered a plane ticket to New York for New Years. New *freaking* York! But I made a choice. I decided to spend New Year's Eve at home in favor of a trip out a bit later when it coincided with a work event. Though it's much more cool to be in New York when the ball drops I made a choice that supports me for the longer term. Um, does this mean I've finally reached adulthood?

As I sat pondering all of this I found myself doing what I'm wont to do when there's something on my brain. Turning over word combinations in my head I decided to write. Although most of what I write never reaches anyone else's eyes I thought I'd share it with the hopes that maybe you'll relate to it. I'm not going to pretend that I have something novel to say about the new year. It's just really me talking to myself as the appointed 2013 hour arrived.

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Dear Suz,

Remember a new year started--not a completely new life. Sure, you can go ahead and make those resolutions to run climb another 14er and save 20% of your income. In addition do something that’s really powerful. Something that will power everything else in your life.

Let this be the 365 days that you really love yourself. Love yourself enough to:

Take small, reachable steps rather than HUGE leaps.

Let go of stress of any form.

Save more than you think you need. This will give you more options and freedom.

Appreciate every scar, crease in your face and every single failure. This means you're really living.

Be kind to yourself.

Allow yourself to be upset from time to time.

Just be upset. Don’t get upset about being upset.

Not worry about that other shoe. It's dropped many times and you're still here.

Be willing to face others disapproval, especially when it means you earn your own.

Remember to stand strong for what you want.

Cook more often. Despite what your first boyfriend said--your food is edible.

Smile more often. It really does make things easier.

Not worry about those little rolls of flesh that pop out over the top of your pants.

Focus on what you have in your life. Practice being grateful every day.

Be unabashedly you.

Be open to love from wherever it comes.

And most of all remember this. You don't have to all of these at one time. Just do one little thing each day that brings you more love and happiness.

Love,
me

Are Your Dreams as Big as Amsterdam?

I'm not on Facebook very much these days (more of a Twitter girl myself) aside from getting news from friends in far flung places. Well, those places became even more far flung this morning with the Facebook announcement that a couple I'm friends with are moving to Amsterdam for her dream job. It was shocking. Thrilling. And thought-provoking.

After working until 1am last night this got me thinking. Am I dreaming big enough? Are the fruits of my efforts bringing me closer to my dreams so that a year from now I can say that my life is much better and my dreams fulfilled or at least on the horizon?

Here's a smattering of the big dreams my friends have accomplished just since the New Year.

  • Next weekend I will attend the wedding of a friend who was dreaming about finding the right person just two years ago. She did meet him--just mere weeks later.
  • Two friends moved to NYC to pursue their startup.
  • A girlfriend and colleague of mine is always dreaming big and having an impact on her local community. This time with an event next weekend, Tellerpalooza.
  • Another friend has been traveling the world for two years, recently checking Dubai and Nairobi off his list.
  • A couple finally sold their home in another state and bought a place in their new city--something they'd been dreaming about for over 2 years.
  • Australia was the destination for a couple of co-workers who married and had kids. 
  • A good friend of mine finally finished the book he's been writing and is submitting it to book publishers.

And finally, to bookend the dreams...a friend is working from Amsterdam this month just because he wanted to see if he could do it.

All this stupendous news has me pondering. What are my dreams? Are my dreams big enough so that if you stacked them up they'd reach the sky? Am I working towards the exciting lifetime dreams or just grinding through the to do list for the day?

While I know all this big news isn't every day and won't continue at this pace, it excites me. It makes me want to go after my dreams and make sure that if I'm working until 1am that it better be on something that's moving me down the football field to my goal line.

What about you? Are you dreaming BIG? Are you actively pursuing your goals like a dog with a bone? Are you working on your own dreams or those of someone else?

A Simple Question

It's that time of year. Yep. New Year's Resolution time.

If you're anything like me let me tell you what's going to happen. Feeling fat and loathsome after a long holiday of eating, being sedentary, spending too much and not doing much you...

Step 1: Make a whole bunch of resolutions that are largely unachievable.

Step 2: Break all of them within a month.

Step 3: Feel like crap about yourself so go back to eating, being sedentary, spending too much and not doing much.

Step 4: Feel guilty. Berate yourself.

Step 5: Go back to Step 1. And repeat.


Don't do this. Now, let me offer you something that really works. Something I also do randomly all year-round is to ask myself a very simple question.

Is my life better or worse than a year ago?

It started as a random wandering of my brain many years ago and has evolved into a practice. This barometer check allows me to quickly break things down in a very black and white way so that I can assess and take action. It's like my very own Timehop but with action.

I did it reflexively today. My mind wandered back to what I was doing a year ago today. At that time I was in an unhappy relationship. I didn't know what I wanted to do next. Trust in myself. Pretty close to negligible. This year? I'm happily single, I'm doing work I love and I trust myself to make decisions that put myself first. Also? I trust that everything I need will come to me.

Like my assessment today the answer is generally yes. On the rare occasion I can't honestly answer in the affirmative it means it's time for a reinvention, refocus or double down.

So...Is your life better or worse than a year ago?

One Word

I'm participating in a cool event called Reverb #10.  The goal of this event is to reflect on the past year in order to get clear about what you want to create in the coming year. Being a coach and into all this kind of cool stuff I thought this was a great opportunity to do something online that I normally do just for myself.  So I will be posting on my blog throughout the month of December. I hope you will find it inspiring and useful for you. If you'd like to follow along, feel free to sign up. You can also follow the blog of one of my dear friends, Cali Harris who is a writer, one of the creators of Reverb #10 and an all around cool chick. OK. So on to the first post for Reverb #10. Today I received the first prompt by email from Gwen Bell. Here's what it said. One Word. Encapsulate the year 2010 in one word. Explain why you're choosing that word. Now, imagine it's one year from today, what would you like the word to be that captures 2011 for you? I love this prompt. One word is a concept I've been using for a number of years. For those of you who don't know--instead of resolutions I focus on a word for each year. This word is really a theme that I want to focus on for the coming year. My word for 2010 was Align. This year was all about aligning my life with myself, my inner most desires. Although I actually chose it at the end of 2009 (as is my tradition) I feel that it's still the right word. Alignment is something I feel. Because of this alignment I have attracted many wonderful things in my life that I hadn't been able to create. Here are just a few things I've done in the past year--all because I was practicing alignment. - Spoke in front of 900 people at Ignite Boulder. - Helped co-found Fourmile Heroes, an organization whose goal is to thank and provide funds for local Boulder firefighters. We've created a poster and stickers that are for sale with proceeds going to Boulder County Firefighters Association Fund. We also helped organize a parade to honor the firefighters of the Fourmile Fire (most of whom are volunteers).

- Learned how to snowboard--one of the things I wanted to do when I moved to CO. OK--still learning but I'm out there! Photo: My friend Lisa and I hitting slopes at Breck.

- Nabbed my very 1st 14er (actually two in one day) which I wrote about here. - Manifested great clients who are up to cool stuff. - Renewed my passion for travel. I visited: Topanga Canyon (L.A.), Telluride, Aspen, Santa Fe & Taos and Austin. And...I'm off to New York and the Bahamas. Photo: The venerable Continental Club in Austin. Yes--that's a bear singing.

- Started writing again after a very long 5 year absence. This culminated in this blog, writing two other books and selling more copies of my Grow Your Intuition book than ever. - Re-ignited my passion for tech and decided to start my own tech company. Now I'm looking for a tech co-founder and finalizing my idea so I can apply for TechStars next year. Those are just a few highlights of my 2010. Your turn. What's your one word for 2010? As for 2011, I've already selected my word. I'm going to keep it to myself for now. I want to savor 2010 for the moment before I focus on what's next.