life coach rona 17 08 06 joy

“Happiness doesn’t exist on the far side of distant mountains. It is within you, yourself. Not you, however, sitting in idle passivity. It is to be found in the vibrant dynamism of your own life as you struggle to challenge and overcome one obstacle after another, as you clamber up a perilous ridge in pursuit of that which lies beyond.“ ~Daisaku Ikeda

I love the image this quote conjures up: that we are all heroes clambering the perilous ridge of our lives with an inner happiness in knowing that as we navigate, we are becoming a stronger and greater version of ourselves.

This little bit of text makes me grateful for my problems. (––Did I just say that?!   )

Yesterday, I attended our annual family reunion. As I caught up with my cousins it occurred to me that each of us has struggles and heartaches, AND times of great pleasure and feelings of deep hope.

As I drove home I felt proud of my extended family. We live well, we hurt, we work, we love, we stumble, we grow, and we laugh.

I began to wonder: do we love and laugh despite our problems, or do we love and laugh because of our problems? ––Perhaps it is a little bit of both, and perhaps that is the beauty and point of it all.

Joy is in the contrast––in the interaction of the different forces in our lives that cause us to have a perspective and an appreciation for what is good and right––right now.

The contrast of what breaks our heart, against the little things that warm it, is what makes those little things so sweet, meaningful, and of great import in our lives.

“...Happiness is found in the vibrant dynamism of your own life…”

Embrace the climb and feel the joy!


life coach rona 17 07 31 rabbit


We have all been in a foul mood, but have you ever been in a fallow mood?

Lately, I have been in kind of a foul mood. (Argh! ????) This happens to me when I am feeling unproductive, unmotivated, or uninspired.

Rather than go down the well-worn path of berating myself, I practiced a little self-compassion instead. I stayed curious and began to question what might be going on. I discovered that if I could drop the judgment about it, where I was felt good and right.

I decided to embrace the fact that decluttering, organizing, hanging out with my daughter, reading, felt way more appealing than anything work related.

So I did those things without guilt. And you know what? My foul mood gave way to a sense of peace.

A client once used the word “fallow” to describe her week. I had never heard of the word so I looked it up. defines fallow as 1. (of land) left unseeded after being plowed and harrowed to regain fertility for a crop; 2. (of an idea, state of mind) undeveloped or inactive, but potentially useful.

It occurred to me that part of me is always supercharged about evolving my work, but there was another part of me that had the wisdom to know that laying low to replenish is sometimes necessary to cultivate fertile ground for what lies ahead.

––Sometimes, doing nothing is exactly what we are called to do! (Yay! ????)

So the next time you feel in a funky mood, check in with yourself to see if you, too, don't need to lie fallow. Then give yourself permission to rest, restore, and recharge so that you can once again be and give your very best––to yourself, your loved ones, and your work.


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!