Personal Development

Phil, Fired? Say it Ain’t So

I received a great email tonight from my editor at Liberty Press. She was updating us on our deadline for the March issue, but what she said made me laugh.

We all know that the wonderfully gregarious party maven (pooper) Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow last week resulting in six more weeks of winter. (I think Kansas City failed to take the notice with high 60′s yesterday but snow today. Maybe we are still in winter? I digress.

My editor’s seven-year-old was posed a question: What if Phil was replaced? Interesting. Sadly, in this economy many people are being forced with that very proposition. Some view it as a negative, others as a positive. I can’t really tell you what to do. All I can do is offer help. From the articles and blogs I’ve been reading there are a few constants that come through all the suggestions.

1) Relax. Enjoy the time off. I know it’s hard to do when you’re stressed about health insurance and making rent, but use the time off to re-focus yourself. (And pick up a book! A few suggestions.)

2) Research. Even if you were let go from your job, was it a job you loved? If not, use this time to find out what you really love. (Focus on your Goals.)

3) Re-visit. This time can be used to re-network yourself and re-acquaint yourself with lost friends in your circle. (Focus on People.)

4) Revamp. Add to you! Take a class at the local college or just do something you’ve always wanted to do but didn’t have the time. You have it now; use it wisely!

5) Re-give. Seinfeld made this word a part of our language, but this word has new meaning here. For the purpose of this blog, I mean that you should give some of your time to an organization or group you care about. Use the skills you have to help them out.

These of course are just suggestions. Staying under the covers sounds good to me too!

For days my editor’s seven-year-old thought about Phil getting fired as children do. He came to his mom and said he didn’t want the groundhog to be out of work even if he is only right 40% of the time! A great laugh for stressful times. Good luck!

No Problem: 2.55 Miles

I proved it: I can eat five Girl Scout cookies at two in the afternoon and still run 2.55 miles at four in the afternoon! It was a completely random number and I’m really proud I was able to do it! I stayed optimistic throughout the whole run… even when I was almost hit by a car! No joke.

Here’s proof of my accomplishment:

I ran 2.55 Miles today!

What is something you think you can’t accomplish right now? Here’s a thought for you: What if you just changed your attitude towards the possibility of accomplishing it. that’s half the battle–between the ears! Don’t beat yourself. If you slip and fall along the way, so be it. But don’t stop yourself!

It’s a Whopper!

Yesterday in Kansas City was a beautiful day! I even went running for the first time in weeks. (I’ll let you know how my body responds in my next post.)

I also was fortunate enough to get a huge laugh around noon. I stumbled upon the Whopper Sacrifice website and it got me thinking. It’s a simple application you can add to your Facebook profile and then you “sacrifice” ten friends to get a free Whopper.

So, I got to thinking, “Who should I sacrifice?”

Just kidding! Actually, I got to thinking how important people are to my daily life. Some days it is my boss. Some days it is a friend, a co-worker, or a random re-connection. The coolest thing happened this week: I received one of the most random emails (which I will share later), but it reminded me that no matter how many miles separate us, we are all connected. We don’t know how. We don’t know when the dots will connect. But we are all, one.

Instead of “sacrificing” ten friends today… what ten friends can you re-connect with?

30,000 Miles

This week my car hit 72,000 miles, but not all of those were from me. I bought the car in February 2006 with 42,000 miles and now, 30,000 miles, what has changed?

Well, I live in a different city. I’m writing a book now. I’m three years older. Hopefully three years wiser.

In those 30,000 miles, what could I have done?

-Traveled around the world along the equator once
-Driven across Iowa almost 64 times
-12.5% of the distance to the Moon
-0.00008% of the distance to Mars
-“Run” 1,145 full marathons

What could you have done? Where will your miles take you this year? What can one mile mean to you? To others?

What will you do it your mile? Tell me!

Gratitude Day Seven – Life!

Over the last six days I’ve written about six things I am grateful for: Dreams, Opportunities, Challenges, Laughter, Health and Family & Friends. The list could have gone on and on. Today is the National Day of Thanksgiving. It’s impossible to not think of things that you’re grateful for today. Think deep. Dig below the surface of the usual. What in your life are you truly grateful for? For me, it’s pretty simple:


I will always be thankful that I’m alive! I’ll always be thankful that I get to share my life with so many wonderful people, family, friends and boyfriend. Today I am celebrating with my family… but my heart is in a hundred different places.

When I speak to audiences, I always speak of lessons I’ve learned and relate them to everyday things and events they may have experienced. One of my lessons is simple: Being alive is being alive… It’s a good thing.

Our dreams are always large. Our opportunities are endless. Our challenges seem like huge mountains and deep valleys. The laughter can help give us energy. Our health can be a blessing or a burden. Our family & friends can be that final puzzle piece.

But when all is said-and-done, we’re alive. Live it. Love it. Be grateful for it and don’t let a day go without letting those around you know it. Do it two ways: First, tell them! Second, live the life!

I’m off to live!

Gratitude Day Six – Family & Friends

Over the next seven days I’m writing about seven things I am grateful for. They aren’t really things, but more thoughts and attitudes I believe we all need in life. Please take some time this week to think and remember what you are grateful for.

Family & Friends

For me, my family and friends are the true life-blood of me. Each person in my life has touched me in some way, has challenged me to be better, has fought with me and has held my hand.

We all need our families. They are the ones that in tough times, will always be there. Plus, at least in my family, they are the ones who have those embarrasing stories that only they can tell. And believe me, in my family, they are told over and over! That’s always on the top of my list when I go back to my parents and spend time with my brother and sister… and now my neice!

And my friends. They are my true fuel. Just like my family, they have been with me through thick and thin and I’m finding that as I grow older (I’m almost 25!) I struggle to stay in touch with people I played high school tennis with, but when I do, I laugh and I smile. I know I have those friends to enjoy good times with and lean on when things are tough.

Please take some time today and thank those family & friends that make a difference in your life. You all make a difference in mine!

Gratitude Day Five – Health

Over the next seven days I’m writing about seven things I am grateful for. They aren’t really things, but more thoughts and attitudes I believe we all need in life. Please take some time this week to think and remember what you are grateful for.


I know it sounds cheesy, but it’s true! With all the things I’ve done in my life, I’m healthy! Running for office could have killed me, but I made it through. The numerous falls while on roller blades and ice skates only bruised (sometimes more than others.) Oh, and I may have dislodged a rib once… but who’s counting?

I’ve really been lucky in that in my life I’ve really only had three ailments. I had stitches when I was three. I had to have an MRI when I was 21 (a back injury that will be with me for life). And this afternoon I am having a (very!) minor procedure.

All told, I’ve been lucky. Especially because I know I beat my body up. I work too hard and when I play, I play too hard. But I enjoy my life and I’ve been lucky. There really isn’t much advice I have for this gratitude day, but I will say this: enjoy your life! You only get one!

Gratitude Day Four – Laughter

Over the next seven days I’m writing about seven things I am grateful for. They aren’t really things, but more thoughts and attitudes I believe we all need in life. Please take some time this week to think and remember what you are grateful for.


The last three days I’ve written about dreams, opportunities and challenges. That’s the normal ebb-and-flow of life. But what is the thing that is in between all of that? I hope it is filled with smiles and laughter.

Laughter is medicine for the soul. We all need it. I have resigned myself to the truth that I will not be the funniest person on the planet. In fact, I’m 99.9% sure that I will never do stand-up. Of course, I want to leave that dream alive!

I have found that even in the darkest moments, it’s laughter that can ease the troubles and lighten the weight we feel. Laughter is the fuel that gives me the energy to keep going. On any given day I have someone asking for something; asking for my time, my talents, my ear and anything they can get their hands on. That can add a lot of stress to my life. But it’s the laughter in those off moments, when I’ve taken time for me that fills my tank. Laugh today and laugh often!

Gratitude Day Three – Challenges

Over the next seven days I’m writing about seven things I am grateful for. They aren’t really things, but more thoughts and attitudes I believe we all need in life. Please take some time this week to think and remember what you are grateful for.


But with every dream and opportunity comes challenges. As I said in my dream post, even though I just started my own company, I’ve already changed the name. That was a challnege, but it was good because, no pun intended, it challenged me to think about what I wanted out of my dream. See how all these things are interconnected?

With challenges we are shown how strong we really are. We see who we have in our corner. I believe that only when we are challenged do we truly see us and what we are made of.

One challenge I have in front of me is growing my business. Somedays this is a burden because I have such a big dream. But then I remember why I’m chasing it. I remember that I want to affect people in a positive way and the challenge becomes a great journey again.

The key to the challenges in life is not letting them keep you down. We all have those bad days and tough weeks. Remember the challenge will pass… the moment you are at your lowest, you’re already on your way up, you just don’t know it! The challenges are the things that make us – us!