• A Time to Breathe – An Invitation

    “To pause is to go on a pilgrimage into ourselves. We discover something new every time.” It’s never been easy being a woman. These days, it’s beyond challenging. Women have become caretakers on overdrive. We’re negotiating profound changes and heightened emotions, along with the logistics of caring for home, family, our professional lives, and our communities. Our well-being and sanity are being undermined daily. Let’s face it, does self-care even make the list? Where do we start? When do we even get the time to breathe? Yet, here’s another fact. In order to cross the gauntlet of our current reality and make it to the other side, we need to stay strong and healthy. We need to look beyond the obvious, keep our priorities straight, and turn self-care into a daily practice. We can’t possibly access our compassion, stay present with difficult emotions, and show up when we’re needed, when we’re exhausted. It takes determination, faith in ourselves, and the willingness to renew our commitment to our well-being … every single day! I’ve been through…

  • Sacred Space

    Your sacred space is where you can find yourself over and over again. Joseph Campbell Lately I’ve been waking up even earlier than usual. Fall has already made its entrance and I find that I need more quiet, alone time with myself. It’s dark outside when I make my way downstairs. The light begins to faintly arrive around 6 am. Nature comes alive when we’re going to sleep and the animals wrap up their activity as the morning light announces itself. The coyotes are having a howling convention in the late evening hours. As I tip toe around my kitchen in the early morning hours, I’m treated to glimpses of activity I wouldn’t have noticed otherwise. Today, I counted five skeins of geese flying overhead, heading West. A fox ran through the backyard and into the woods, while two red tail hawks chased each other and landed on the tree outside my kitchen window. I make myself a pot of tea, ginger with lemon. It feels good to hold a hot cup of tea at…

  • On Strength, Health, and Sanity

    The day after Paying Attention was published, I received a thoughtful email from a friend and faithful reader of my posts. She usually writes back to let me know what the post meant to her, ask me questions, and at times challenge me to go deeper. These email conversations have become our little ritual and I love it. After I posted Paying Attention, I sat with what I had written. I felt that the post was incomplete. There was more to be said about how each of us is handling the tremendous stress and pressure we’re experiencing. There’s nothing simple or straightforward about our current, collective experience. When I received my friend’s reply to the post, something she said gave me pause. I asked her permission to share one of her comments and decided to jump-start a conversation based on her experience. This is what she said … I have found lately that I have wanted to be less introspective. I think I am less willing to look inward now even though the time is…

  • On Resilience

    These days I often catch myself contemplating resilience. I think about it as I observe the variety of responses to the pandemic and the restrictions that were put into place. Times like these bring out the best and the worst in us. I watch my own reaction as the days begin to blend into each other. I find myself reflecting back to my years as a child and a teenager in Greece. Memories of my parents, family members, teachers, and neighbors sharing their experience during World War II are vivid. The aftermath of the war defined my generation after all. I grew up at a time of cultural and political upheaval. I watched people persevere through adversity and hardship. My own journey as an immigrant has given me a unique perspective on issues. I tend to draw strength from my past. There’s this deep seated belief that, as long as I have my health, I can find my way through. This doesn’t mean that I don’t come up against my limitations or I don’t feel…

  • The Eye of the Storm

    We're being hit by a powerful storm. We're asked to take cover and wait it out. We're trying to care for our family and keep healthy, while working from home. We're trying really hard to keep our perspective and maintain hope. Staying calm, sane, and present with ourselves in the midst of chaos is not easy.

  • Saying No: An Act of Self-Care and Self-Respect and It Doesn’t Have to Be Hard.

      Imagine a stream of water. Its source begins at the top of a mountain. Down it travels toward the sea; its water supply renewed by rain and melted snow. The stream winds through villages and towns and soon it takes the form of a strong, plentiful river. The people who live along its banks use the water to grow their crops and sustain themselves. They’re grateful, but soon, they begin to take the river and its abundance for granted. They’ve come to believe that the river will be there forever, filled with cool, clean water for them to use and support their lives. Then, things begin to change. There’s a long period of drought and the river is not renewed. In the meantime, the villagers continue to draw water as usual. Their needs are met. This goes on for some time, until the river becomes a stream, a trickle, and finally dries out. Now what? What if I were to tell you that you’re the river? And . . . if you’re the river, whose…

  • Saying No and Meaning It!

    I never thought I had a problem saying no until I had kids. Along the way, I realized that my kids were born to not take no for an answer. It looked familiar . . . did they get that one from me? Nah!! It must have been a long lost relative or something. One could argue that not taking no for an answer is a good thing.  It may even be one of the keys to success. Yet, knowing when to take no for an answer is also a sign of wisdom and respect. Perseverance and stubbornness are two sides of the same coin. One is good, the other foolish! I was venting to a friend one day when she turned and asked me: “Is there anything in the way you say no that makes it feel like maybe?” It was as if a lightning bolt had hit. My friend was right. No matter what, I went soft inside after I said no. Not only that, but when I sat down to reflect, I…

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