• How to Navigate This Season of Change and Possibilities

    There is a vast difference between willingness and willfulness. Most often willfulness is based on fear. We try to make the world the way we want it by forcing solutions. Compensating for the uncertainty inside us, we become motivated by power instead of participation. Then we find struggles instead of solutions because force is often met with resistance. We stay emotionally hungry yet cannot be fed. We ask for more and more and receive less. Willingness, on the other hand, allows life to show us the way. Gunilla Norris from Becoming Bread It is late October, and the glorious rituals of Fall are in full display. Living in New England means…

  • The Power of the Questions We Ask Ourselves

    Is it necessary is a question that has been with me for a while. I have been asking this question of myself and my clients. It was the theme of this month’s gathering, and it is this post’s focus. We are approaching the Fall equinox and the season that ushers and celebrates change in a most spectacular way. I believe this question can be extremely useful as we try to figure out our next steps. What prompted the question? It all began as I was scrolling down my Twitter feed. I came across comments that people were making on a specific thread. The comments covered a range but what struck me was…

  • Saying No: An Act of Self-Care and Self-Respect

    Imagine a river. Its source can be found at the top of a mountain. It travels toward the sea; its water supply being renewed by rain and melted snow. The river winds through villages and towns, and along the way, it becomes strong and plentiful. The people who live along the river banks use the water to grow their crops and sustain themselves. They are grateful, but soon they begin to take the river and its abundance for granted. They have come to believe that the river will be there forever, filled with cool, clean water for them to use and support their lives. Then, slowly, things begin to change. There is…

  • Continued Lessons on Boundaries and Finding Balance

    We are well into June, the garden is blooming, and I have resumed my hand-to-hand combat with the Queen. What is that supposed to mean? You may ask. Allow me to take you back to the beginning. When we bought our house twenty-six years ago, there were no established gardens, and I was still a novice gardener. There were mature trees and bushes, an abundance of rosa multiflora (wild rose) which is an invasive dense shrub, a 90-ft weeping willow, and pachysandra, hostas, and periwinkle growing along the stone walls and near the house. There was a stream cutting across the backyard and into the woodland beyond. The property was wild,…

  • How to Navigate the Flow of Change Mindfully

    Our culture moves fast and is outwardly focused. We are driven by our goals and our to-do lists. Sometimes it feels as if we can’t see the forest for the trees. We tell ourselves that we will rest when we complete what we have set out to do. Of course, not everything goes smoothly, no matter how diligent, disciplined, or organized we are. Things can turn out differently than expected, and life takes us on detours. When this happens, what matters is how we manage ourselves. For example, you may be well into your new beginnings. You waited a long time to change a few things and step onto a new…

  • Your New Beginnings and How to Take That First Step

    The seasons of a year. The return of spring.The heart grows glad when it can leaf out,when light and shadow are known to belong toone another. – Gunilla Norris We are constantly in a state of reinvention, and never is that more apparent than at the onset of spring. Every day, as we look out our window and step out our front door, we are reminded that a new beginning is already underfoot. I was talking to a friend recently who mentioned how much she loves waking up early in the morning, so she can stand in front of her window to watch the sunrise. Each morning the sun rises, marking…

  • The Storms That Define Us

    When the post on The Sun Always Shines After The Storm was published, some of the readers emailed me with comments that touched me deeply and inspired me. I thought to myself … Wouldn’t it be great if I wrote a follow-up post that included other people’s thoughtful insights and wisdom on the ways storms define us? At the same time, I happened to come upon and watch “An Evening with Patti Smith” that took place at the  Marie Selby Botanical Gardens in Sarasota, FL. Something that Patti Smith mentioned about her experience with grief and loss made me search for an interview she had given many years ago. Here is…

  • The Sun Always Shines After The Storm

    A few weeks ago, we were hit by a snowstorm. A friend on Twitter mentioned how she loves the sun shining after a storm. I replied by saying, “It reminds me of an essay I wrote in High School, “The sun always shines after a storm.” I was 16. Sometimes I wonder how I would write it today.” She followed up with this: “Why not write an up-to-date version for who you are today?” Invitation accepted! It was the mid-70s, and I was in High School. My favorite Greek Literature teacher had instructed us to approach the essay as a metaphor for life. After we handed in our papers, we had…

  • The Edge of New Beginnings

    There was a full moon last night. I woke up early and went downstairs to make myself a cup of hot water with lemon. I fed the kitty and stood by the kitchen window, waiting for the water to boil. The house was quiet. Outside, the full moon was casting its light on the snow-covered yard. I stood there, breathing, looking up, and in this precious moment, my heart was full, and my mind at peace. When you regain a sense of your life as a journey of discovery, you return to rhythm with yourself.When you take the time to travel with reverence, a richer life unfolds before you.Moments of beauty…

  • Beginner’s Mind

    We are well into November, and Thanksgiving is around the corner. I have been moving along, following the established rhythm of life and work, but a few days ago, it hit me. We are approaching the end of this year. This is usually the time when my creative thinking kicks in. It is also the time I feel the urge to step on the brakes, look back, and take it all in. Traveling through the dark time of the year affords us this opportunity for self-reflection. Looking back and evaluating becomes the foundation to setting clear and focused intentions for moving forward. It is easy to settle into habits, behaviors, and…

  • Homecoming

    I drove through town today, a drive that I have probably done thousands of times in the last 27 years, in all kinds of weather. Today’s ride was beautiful, with trees putting on a spectacular and colorful show. New England knows how to dress for fall, no doubt. I drove slowly, leisurely, taking in the colors against the grey autumn sky. As I looked at various buildings and corners of our small town, I found myself going down memory lane. A lot has changed in the last 27 years. Places that I used to love and frequent, alone and with the girls when they were growing up, are not here anymore.…

  • After the Storm

    I love fresh herbs. I think they make just about every dish taste better. In the summer, I grow basil, oregano, parsley, sage, and thyme. When it comes to basil and oregano, the more, the better. Oregano, whose scent and taste always transport me back to my childhood in Greece, grows with abundance. I use it fresh and also dry some to have through the year. I grow basil right outside the kitchen, on the deck, and I keep seeds going throughout the season. We love pesto in this house. I make as much as I can through the summer and always freeze some for winter. If you would like to…