Connecting Coaches, Creatives, & Curious Folks through what's emerging in this moment

yin_yang_treeThis has been a pensive couple of weeks for me as at this time two years ago I was hanging out in the ICU of Marquette General Hospital learning a lot about living, dying, choosing, and how important oxygen is.  At this same time last year the thoughts were actually too overwhelming for me to sort through and write about, so I let the date pass by barely noted.  I took it so far as to let blogging pass by altogether and only wrote 3 posts in 2012.  Now I feel just that much farther away from the experience that if feels like a good time to capture some of the memories and begin to share some of my learning.  Bear with me please, as this is likely to get long.  I’m giving myself full permission though, as pivotal moments in one’s life should not be forced to meet our tweet-sized attention spans.

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It is an incredibly frightening thing to not be able to take a breath.  I have easily accessible flashback images in my mind of my body bucking, eyes wide, wrists in restraints, as I struggled to suck oxygen into pneumonia-filled lungs.  “This must be what it feels like to drown”, I thought.  “If I could gasp harder, maybe I could get enough.”  But there was no room at the inn… no place to put a breath, even if I could manage to coax it into my crowded lungs.

And then… Read the rest of this entry »

For 17 years I’ve been coaching clients and keeping my private coaching practice nicely filled ~ in spite of not having a website, not having a declared niche, waiting 13 years to get a business card,  and never attending a single official networking event.  In reality, I do network like mad because I lead workshops that train people to become Co-Active Coaches and Leaders, I lead and attend retreats and conferences, I go to exotic places (like the grocery store), and Facebook is a 24/7 networking party begging participation.  In the last few days, I’ve been linking random thoughts to share with you as a way to think about things to make getting clients natural and easy.

Believe it or not, my thinking starts with a little iPhone app called ‘Sleep Cycle’This is the most fascinating thing!  For those of you not yet enamored with it, here’s how it works:  Set the alarm for when you want to wake up and choose a window of time prior to your wake-up time within which you’d like to be awakened.  I like 30 minutes.  Then place the phone face down on your bed, under the sheet, and fall asleep.  Feel free to fall asleep to the sound of waves or rain and such if you like.  The phone feels the vibration of the bed and determines how deep your sleep based on its sensing system.  It graphs this for you and gives you a nice little read out of your sleep cycle.  The coolest part is that it determines when you are the MOST awake in that 30 minutes prior to alarm time and ever so gently wakes you up right then.  It doesn’t rip you out of your deepest sleep, but rather it whispers you awake when you’re on the verge of awakening.  It’s hard to wake up crabby when sweet bells are chiming and cheering my nearly awake self on!

https://encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTYaGh1vJdVPYo3C8VMDEGa2gM_EEivv23C1Y76ZZR7qEfNcRVMugThe next thought is inspired by something I’m studying that I’m totally not qualified to teach or explain just yet!  Rather than give you the language or try to share the teachings, I’ll give you my very over-simplified language for it.  (The terms have been changed to protect the innocence of the true brilliance of the teachings from the newbie I am!)  People can be divided into two basic categories: those who are walking the Earth but not yet awake… and those who are WIDE AWAKE or fully conscious.  Let’s call the first group the ‘Sleep Walkers’; those who go through the motions of life, but have not yet awakened to the full potential of life and their role in it.  ‘Awake Humans’, on the other hand, are wide awake and understand that they are part of something larger than themselves… perhaps Divine in nature.  They pay attention and know the path they’re on is one of evolving consciousness.

So…. I was thinking…. as coaches we need to be looking for those ‘Sleep Walkers’ that are the most ready to awaken and just give them a gentle tap… a whisper… a simple ‘chime’. Too often coaches market to those who are in their deepest state of sleep by marketing always to the ‘need’ or ‘lack’ in people. They wonder why it’s hard to get a yes. (Think of how hard it is to awaken a child from a deep sleep… it’s nearly impossible!)  If we catch folks who are on the brink of moving from ‘Sleep Walkers’ to ‘Awake Humans’, and we catch them when they are at their peak of wakefulness in their sleep, they will hear the call!  If we whisper or chime the bell in the ears of those who are in their Awakened Humanness already, and again we look for when they too are most primed and ready, they will heed the call.  And man-oh-man, are they fun to coach!

If nothing else, I say it’s way more fun and satisfying to look for awakeness in the world than try to awaken people from their deepest sleeps.

What say you, oh wise ones?  I’m always eager to dialogue with you!

Psssssst, are you AWAKE?

Peace,
Helen

With a little help, the Robin was victorious!

In April, I helped a Robin who seemed a little shy of being the sharpest tool in the shed build her nest on my back porch.  She kept trying to get her materials to stick on the top of the support post, but nothing was working.  She brought endless bits of last year’s flower stems to that spot, sat on them, watched them fall, and looked around seeming dumbfounded at the fact it wasn’t working.  She kept trying.  For two days she did this to no avail.  So, I stuck a branch up there for support, wove some of her stems in to give her a foundation, and she went to town.  She built a fine nest for her future family in a day or two and sat proudly in it each day.  When she was away worming, I snapped photos inside the nest to watch her family’s progress.  First one egg, then another.  She never reached the usual number of four, but she diligently sat on and turned over her two prized eggs each day.  I was mostly proud of her and how I’d helped, though a little concerned I’d helped further a gene pool that nature was trying to stop. Read the rest of this entry »

My new theory:
People don’t ever really change, and that’s exactly as it should be!

If you’re a coach or client, you may think I’m crazy to type that out loud.  You may be grimacing at your computer, coming up with loads of examples that prove me wrong.  You stand by to feverishly defend your websites that boast magical abilities to support clients in living into their potential.  We are, after all, in the business of evoking transformation, aren’t we?  If so, how can this be true?

Last month, I got to hang out with my mother and three of her childhood friends.  For 10 days I didn’t really talk to anyone under the age of 83.  These are 4 very accomplished, out-spoken, well-educated, liberal, fun women.  I was the Sherpa and chauffeur on their annual reunion trip, this time to the Florida Keys.  Throughout our trip,  I felt I could see them across time at ages like 4, 8, 13, 19, 26, 35, 47, 56, 64, 72, and now in their 80s.  I could see how, though hips and bits may get replaced, some things truly never change.  Best of all, I could see how GREAT that is! Read the rest of this entry »

Assumed Blessings

The day we met - 9/26/91

It’s natural to assume that a mother being handed the most beautiful baby boy imaginable would feel blessed.  Add to the equation the fact the mother couldn’t bear children of her own, and of course this is an extraordinary blessing.  One by one, people showered their well wishes and gaped in awe at how lucky we were.  They brought the cutest little clothes and said things like, “You must be so happy” and “Amazing!  What a miracle!  How fortunate you are!”  Trouble is, a part of me was miserable. Read the rest of this entry »

Misleading Previews

Imprisoned by my own thoughts and feelings

It’s time to change the movie trailer in my mind.  For far too long, some of the images that I’ve carried around just don’t support the truth of who I am and who I’m becoming.  The painting above is a great example of that.  This is a mixed-media piece I did back in about 1987.  For lack of a better title, and since it reflected how I felt when I painted it, I called it ‘Self Portrait’.  If this were an image in the previews to the movie of my life, imagine the film that would follow.

Though most previews intend to lure one in to want to watch a film, the movie trailer in my mind to the film of my parenting life is loaded with all of my most horrific parenting moments.  Every metaphorical explosion, chase scene, stinging word, monster mama bits – all those snippets run over and over again in my mind and remind me of a film I’d never want to see, let alone star in. Read the rest of this entry »

Though today is Sunday, the poem ‘Monday’ is in my heart and on my mind.  This poem is for my brother, Pat, whose birthday is today.  He’s a poet who doesn’t know it.  He is a man who has always had a window to look out of… to sip his coffee by… to see what the rest of us can not see.  To see as Pat sees, one must spend a lot of time at their window.

Monday

The birds are in their trees,
the toast is in the toaster,
and the poets are at their windows. Read the rest of this entry »

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