Lead with your vulnerability

Lead with vulnerability

When working with coaching clients, whether to help uplift and transform their lives or bring their book to life, the theme that constantly emerges is Vulnerability.

Lead with your vulnerability, I so often say. Open your heart and share what is there. That is where the magic begins. That is where others will connect to you.

Easier said than done, I know because today it’s my turn. My turn to lead with vulnerability.

Today is my turn to speak about the sadness I’m feeling.

We took our boy to college this past weekend. I didn’t think it would be a big deal. After all, he spent all of last year on a gap year in England and now he’s just a five-hour drive away.

And yet…something is different. 

He is not here. With us. It kind of feels like a light has gone out in our home. I keep looking to replace the burned-out bulb, but it seems the entire lamp is missing.

I know it will get better. I know we’ll find our way and get used to the more dimly lit rooms and find other ways to bring in the light. But today, I’m just going to allow myself to feel all of this and lead with my vulnerability.

Today and in the coming days, I’ll practice what I preach – giving myself the self-care support I need. I’ll meditate and walk and read and rest and feed my body, soul, and mind, as I find my way down this new path.

I will allow myself to be vulnerable and receive support from others.

Which has already happened, for just as I was writing this, a dear friend and ongoing parenting mentor, happened to call. After we spoke, she sent me this –

Welcome Blessing

She advised me to have tissues. Glad I did.

So… not only do I have a kid off at college, but a daughter heading into her senior year of high school and looking for the college where she’ll end up next year. Sigh.

How can you lead with vulnerability today?

You Have Permission to Take Care of Yourself

Give yourself permission to care for yourself first.

With kids home for the summer and the house feeling wonderfully noisy and chaotic, I was just thinking back on the days when the kids were little and even more noisy and the house was even more chaotic.

There were days when I was so exhausted, my eyes wouldn’t focus properly. Yet even on the rare occasion when the kids were napping at the same time (miracle!!), I wouldn’t dare lie down.

Not because I had too much to do – I always had too much to do. Instead, I was afraid someone might discover me napping!

How dare I? I used to think.

So I’d force myself to “suck it up” and keep slogging through my to-do list, all the while becoming more exhausted, resentful and angry.

You have permission to take care of yourself, even when you're a mom! Paying attention to self-care can mean the difference between total burn out and a wonderful day. #selfcare #momlife #motherhood

Boy have I come along way!

Today, when I’m running on fumes and not showing up as my best self, I ask  – How dare I not?

Best of all, I don’t care what anyone else thinks!

And I certainly don’t need permission from anyone.  And neither do you!

I simply pull out my Magical Living Daily Planner (hint, hint) and right under the Soul column, I write in big and bold letters – NAP.

And later in the day, when I’m feeling like a little rest is in order, I take a nap. Happily. And so should you!

Nap, or do whatever feeds your soul and allows you to show up in the fullness of you.

Go ahead, give yourself permission! Maybe take it a step further and write yourself a permission slip – giving yourself permission to take care of You!

 

Photo by Kinga Cichewicz on Unsplash

A Summer Snow Day

Summer Snow Day

There’s nothing I love more than a snow day.

When I was a classroom teacher, I’d listen to the radio announcements with my fingers crossed – willing the announcer to say the name of my school.

Then when my own kids were in school, I’d say a little wish before opening the computer to check.

Last week, we had tremendous thunderstorms here in New Hampshire, both kids were sent home from their outdoor jobs (lifeguard and mountain bike guide).

I was so excited to have them both home unexpectedly and declared it a Summer Snow Day!

Tuck used the day off to visit the chiropractor and get a haircut, but Andie and I decided that a rainy day called for a matinee.

We went to see the documentary about Mr. Rodgers, Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

I am so deeply glad we did.

What a special movie. What a special man. What a special message.

A message we need more than ever in this world.

Spread kindness.

Care for others.

Love is at the root of everything.

Listening is an act of love.

The development of our children is of vital importance…

and so many others.

Andie never really watched Mr. Rodger’s Neighborhood, but she was deeply moved by the movie.

I loved our time together and felt so grateful for the thunderstorms that made it all possible.
But it reminded me, that we don’t have to wait for the “snow days” to play.

We can give ourselves permission to play and take time for ourselves, regardless of the weather!

I’m going to try and do so more often, and I hope you will, too!

Won't You Be My Neighbor

 

Photo by Jake Hills on Unsplash

Raising Kids and Renovating Houses

photo credit Nolan Issac unsplash

“Release your attachment to how things ‘ought’ to be and instead surrender to how they actually are.”
Dr. Shefali Tsabary

My husband and I are serial house renovators.

We’ve owned four old homes and our kids have never known one without crooked doors or slanted floors.

Obviously, we love old houses. But the problem is, there’s always work to be done. In other words, the work is never done. As soon as one project is complete, we’re already looking forward and preparing for the next.

The other day, my husband and I were outside walking around the house when he said, “We have so much to do.”

And that simple statement stopped me in my tracks.

For a moment, I knew he was right. But then I looked all around and allowed myself to see all that we had done, rather than all that we hadn’t. It was time to appreciate that. And I asked him to try and see our house through those eyes.

And he did.

We stood in our yard, side by side, looking around like we’d both put on new glasses.

Rather than seeing the landscaping we’d hadn’t done, we saw the aluminum siding we’d torn down and the beautiful clapboard that now took its place. We laughed about the dark brown garages that were now clean and painted white, and as we walked toward our new front porch with the two rockers just waiting for us, my husband let out a big exhale. He was seeing the Magic in what we had created.

As I leaned back in my rocking chair, I started thinking about how we need to do the same with our kids.

In this busy world we live in, we tend to look at all the things they’re not, rather than all the things they are.

Our children are not their spelling tests, SAT scores, soccer games, piano lessons, play dates, prom dates or to-do lists. They’re funny, wondrous, beautiful, amazing beings growing and learning right before our eyes. We just have to slow down, let out a big breath, shift our perspective and allow ourselves to see that.

To see the Magic of who our kids really are – not who they will be someday, but the amazing beings they are right here, right now.

Because the reality is, we’re all renovations in progress.  And from time to time, we need to stop, look around and appreciate all that we’ve accomplished to get to where we are right in this moment. We also need to do the same with our children, so we can model for them, how to do that for themselves.

That’s where we find the Magic.