life coach rona 17 07 23 spartan siblings

 

Both my brother and my sister have completed Spartan Races––a racing course that is comprised entirely of obstacles. The thrill and challenge of the sport are in overcoming these obstacles––and having fun in the process!

During training, the racers know that each obstacle conquered is building the perseverance, resilience, and endurance necessary to complete the course.

On racing day, the obstacles encountered are not a surprise. They are not viewed with fear or resentment nor as something to be avoided or somehow gotten around.

Instead, the participants run boldly toward the obstacles and attack them with vim and vigor. Each victory along the path is proving to themselves that they can accomplish more than they thought possible.

As I settle into a relatively quiet period in my life, I look back at some recent challenges in hopes to alchemize my journey into to something positive.

Going forward, one aspiration is to approach my life as my brother and sister approach Spartan Races:

* Train well - hone virtues of optimism, courage, and peace so that I can handle any challenge in life with grace, fortitude, and equanimity.
* Don’t be surprised or agitated when I encounter either internal or external obstacles - they are all part of the game of life.
* Face challenges head on and with an awareness that each obstacle cleared makes me stronger and grittier, and prepares me well for the next one.
* Have fun in the process!

Here is to honoring the little Spartan within each of us as we strive to live our lives as fearless warriors!! ––Spartan Up!

 

life coach rona 17 07 16 amor fati

 

(For those of you who reached out to say that you missed my posts––thank you––I’m back! )

This week marks 6 months since my dad became ill. He went into a hospital mid-January and never returned home. During that time he bounced among hospitals, rehabs, emergency rooms, and ICU.

Despite being told repeatedly that his prognosis was grim, Dad worked hard to rehabilitate so that he could go back to independent living. He fell just shy of his goal.

Last week, Dad moved into a nursing facility. In the end, he decided his home was not the best place for him to be. It was his decision; he did it on his own terms––very true to form.

The grace by which my dad accepted his fate across these 6 months has been (and is) astounding to me. “Amor fati”––love of fate––was always the thought that would come to mind after I spoke to or visited with him.

During that same 6 months, my family had our own health crises. By comparison to my dad, I did not accept my fate quite as gracefully. Dad was stoic. I wavered between that of a petulant child and a victim.

Dad accepted his fate and moved on. I resisted and got stuck. Dad worked to get stronger. I numbed out to books and blogs. Dad exuded a certain peace with his circumstance while I waged a mini-war against my reality.

Though I practiced meditation and mindfulness, sustaining my center remained elusive until one morning while journaling it hit me: I admired Dad *so* much for accepting his fate, yet, I was not accepting my own.

“If it’s happening, it’s supposed to happen––embrace it.” became my new mantra. I began (rather quickly!) to feel an internal shift. The energy that had fueled my resistance was suddenly freed up to create, contribute, and serve––a big source of happiness for each of us.

We all have the power to choose to embrace “what is”––to love our fate––and to experience greater peace and contentment in the process. That is my wish for each of us.

–Amor fati, my friends!

 

life coach rona 17 03 27 interwoven tapestry of life

 

Each of us needs the rest of us to make the life we are living possible.

While driving last week, I passed an 18-wheeler traveling slowly with its oversized load. The truck seemed to be tilting left and it looked dangerous. I felt bad for the driver whose job it was to ensure safe delivery. I said a prayer that the man arrive safely and that his journey is an easy one.

I began to think about all the men and women who do jobs that are dangerous, dirty, tedious, or physically demanding so that I might enjoy the things I take for granted: a highway to get me to where I need to go; indoor plumbing(!); garbage removal; clothing; food, etc.

As I reached for my coffee mug, I thought about the infinite number of people necessary to make the simple experience of enjoying my coffee possible.

I thought about those who dug the trench where pipes would be laid to carry the water to Starbucks, and the worker who would use the water to pour over the beans that someone had planted, and another had harvested, and yet another had delivered to the store… (I could go on but I think you get my point. ;) )

It then occurred to me that every person is doing something in service to another: the mom, salesperson, truck driver, CEO, plumber, politician, gardener, engineer, teacher, factory worker, artist, farmer, etc. are each contributing to our lives in direct or indirect ways.

Although we often feel separate and at odds with one another, the truth is our lives are inextricably intertwined into one beautiful tapestry that we call life.

As we go out in the world, may we hold in our hearts and demonstrate only love, respect, and gratitude for one another!