Friday, December 08, 2006

December Nights

While I've been pushing more snow out of the driveway than I care to this time of year, I'm so appreciative of that same snow during these nights of the full moon. Full moon nights are beautiful no matter the time of year. And the additional brightness caused by the snow's reflection makes sleep seem inappropriate. I'm called to move outside in the middle of the night and chase shadows in the snow.

Both December and night are often used as metaphors to describe the end; usually, the end of one's life. After last night, I'm no longer sure the metaphor fits. The woods around my house at 2:00 a.m. on a December, full-moon night is very much alive. The bright moon reflecting off the new snow allowed me to see that there's a lot going on at night in December.

The animal tracks alone were amazing, from the tiniest of mouse tracks to the bigger tracks of the deer and coyote. These tracks were crossing each others’ paths with such seeming purpose that I felt there was some sort of sophisticated traffic pattern I was not privy to. In the open field near my home, I found the wing tracks of what was likely an owl that had swooped down to pluck a rabbit.

In the bright stillness, I could hear every grunt, groan, snap and crack. All my senses were turned up a notch. And I was excited to perhaps see what might emerge from the shadows rather than fearful of what was lurking within them. So that's the full-moon, December night metaphor I'd rather embrace. Enjoy all your Decembers and all your nights.
See you on the flip side of the New Year.
“There will come a time when you think everything is finished. That will be the beginning.” ~ Louis L’Amour

Sunday, November 19, 2006

I Can Do That!

There was a time when I would not have believed it was possible to spend the equivalent of almost 3 months fishing. Now that it has happened, it seems easy and I'm gladly looking forward to more than 100 days of fishing on my favorite lakes in 2007. 

Possibilities are like that. All it takes is a small experience of what can happen, and the seemingly impossible becomes suddenly and easily possible. For me, it starts with taking just one small action and then another, no matter how small, on the possibility. Soon I notice that I'm moving out of the arena of possibilities and into reality. Often, a possibility like 80 days of fishing seems just a little too far fetched in the beginning. More likely, I can't even envision it. So I only focus on taking the little opportunities as they present themselves. I was able to see each opportunity as it came to me, 5 days here, 10 days there. I just took those smaller opportunities and let the 80 day happen in the background.
It does, however, take some practice in order to see and take the opportunities. First, look for the unusual patterns in your life and stay open to those patterns. Is something unusual or unexpected coming up for you often lately? Actually invite that unexpected. Then, when you do recognize an unexpected opportunity, trust your body. Don't let your mind reason you out of the opportunity. For instance, your mind may say you don't deserve another week off. And what you think and believe about yourself and what you deserve determines your emotions and behavior. So you don't take time off. Then that behavior validates what you think and believe about yourself and the possibility disappears. You're body however will likely be excited about the good opportunities. So listen to it and let it lead you.

You can do that!! Just one little opportunity at a time. We contain within ourselves infinite possibilities.
“Impossible is a word humans use far too often.” ~Jeri Ryan

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

The Intimacy of September

How was your summer? Outstanding, I hope.

  • In May, I fished Northern Ontario 14 days in two trips. I mowed the lawn once.
  • In June, I had Jeep failure and didn't fish at all. I picked a rash of blueberries. I mowed the lawn twice. Was a nasty pattern forming here?
  • In July I fished Northern Ontario 12 days. I mowed the lawn once.
  • In August I fished Northern Ontario for 15 glorious days. And I mowed the lawn only once.
  • This month I’ll be back up for two weeks. I've already mowed the lawn.

Ah, September. It's my favorite time of the year. My flower garden has dulled to browns and just a few yellows from the lingering Black-eyed Susan. But the backyard along the creek bank is in full bloom with goldenrod and wild aster. Yellow and lavender grace the perimeter. The Shaggy Manes are popping up in the yard and I'm devouring them as fast as they dare show themselves.

In September, as the yellow school bus once again winds its way down the road, I get the urge to get things around the house and yard completed and put away. As the autumnal equinox approaches here in the northern hemisphere, as the sun crosses the celestial equator and night and day become nearly the same length, I too feel the balance.

There's something familiar and meaningful about September. It's the time of year I feel most intimate with others, myself, and the things around me. The frivolity of summer has ended and with September comes the urge to push my roots a little deeper. I feel warm friendship with those around me. I feel cozy in my surroundings. I'm less interested in declaring my desires, as I had all summer, and much more interested in discovering what my desires want of me.

The intimacy of my September reflections and conversations brings me closer to others as those conversations and thoughts become more intellectual, spiritual and emotional. I'm enjoying those deeper connections. I hope you are too. Trust me, September is safe.

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower. ~Albert Camus

Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. ~George Eliot

Youth is like spring, an over praised season more remarkable for biting winds than genial breezes. Autumn is the mellower season, and what we lose in flowers we more than gain in fruits. ~Samuel Butler

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

It's The Berries, Continued

Suddenly the days are much cooler. How did that happen? One minute we were sweltering in record heat and then the next thing I know, the nights have become wonderfully crisp. The air is dry. Plants in the garden are starting to brown. The summer daisies that lined the country roads near my home are being replaced by the more autumnal Black-eyed Susan. I can hear the occasional chain saw, the first sign that some of us are preparing for fall and winter. Families are scrambling for one more holiday before school begins. The county fair is in full swing. And I'm enjoying evening campfires in the backyard without mosquitoes!

As you may recall, I had ended June here in Northern Michigan with a bumper crop of blueberries picked and frozen. At the end of July I headed for Northern Ontario where I traveled just far enough north that I was back into prime blueberry season. Oh my, I hadn't planned on picking more blueberries. I went to fish after all. But I'm a harvester at heart. And whether it's fish or berries, when the opportunity presents itself I can't help but act. This time, I didn't freeze berries. It was nice not feeling the responsibility to “put up” my harvest but, instead, without the kitchen facilities of home, allow myself to indulge and fill my belly with berries every day. And thanks to all of your responses to my June newsletter, I had plenty of recipes to choose from.

So here's a sampling of my fish camp berry fare. I hope you have the opportunity to enjoy them as much as I have.

From Patt Osborne...
1 cup frozen blues
1/2 cup light rum (or more…depending on the mood and circumstances
1/2 lime-juiced
1/2 cup crushed ice
1/4 cup superfine sugar
In a blender, combine all ingredients for about 30 seconds. Pour into a chilled glass.
My Comment: There was no blender at camp but I did just fine by shaking vigorously.

From Shelly K...
3/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. butter
1 egg
3/4 c. milk
2 c. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
2 c. blueberries
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. flour
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 c. soft butter
Mix topping ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
Beat together sugar and butter. When mixture becomes light, add egg and beat.
Sift together dry ingredients on a piece of waxed paper. Pour half of dry ingredients into bowl, add milk and remaining dry ingredients.
Stir together until combined, do not over mix. Sprinkle berries on top and stir in.
Sprinkle on topping and bake at 350 degrees for 45-50 minutes.

From My Mom...
1 qt. blueberries
1/4 c. water
1/2 c. sugar
1 c. flour
1 tsp. salt
2 tbs. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/3 c. milk
2 tbs. oil
In a 2-quart saucepan, bring the blueberries, water and sugar to a boil. Lightly mix together all dumpling ingredients. Drop dumpling dough by spoonfuls into the boiling berries. Cover and cook for 20 minutes over moderate heat. Serves 4.

From Denise M...
1 stick butter
3 to 4 c. fresh blueberries
1 c. water
1 c. sugar
3/4 c. self-rising flour
3/4 c. milk
1 c. sugar
Melt the butter in an 8 or 9 inch square pan. Put blueberries in pan with water and 1 cup sugar. Leave on burner. Simmer while making crust. Mix the flour, milk and 1 cup sugar together. Mix well. Pour over blueberries. Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees. Check all along to see if juice is cooking out. If so, add a little water to keep cobbler juicy. Serve with ice cream.

From Me...
1 c. blueberries
1 egg
1 c. milk
1/2 c. melted butter
1 c. flour
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
2 tbs. sugar
3/4 tsp. salt
Combine egg, milk and butter. Sift dry ingredients and add to egg mixture. Beat. Drop on lightly greased griddle, sprinkle about 2 tablespoons berries over each cake. Turn when bubbly and browned.
2 cups blueberries
1 cup light corn syrup or maple syrup
dash of salt
Mash blueberries until somewhat smooth. In saucepan, combine berries, syrup and salt. Bring to boil and cook for 7-10 minutes, stirring gently, or until thickened.

And finally, suggestions from Karla K., who seems to have a bit of a blueberry fetish...
"Blueberry yogurt, blueberry custard, blueberry scones, blueberry waffles, blueberry smoothies, blueberry ice cream, blueberry sauce, blueberry jam/jelly, blueberry juice, blueberry crepes, blueberry syrup, blueberry/pecan french toast, blueberry cheesecake, blueberry blintzes, blueberry tarts, blueberry & honey pecan salad, blueberry coffee cake, blueberry daiquiri, blueberry fruit ice, ... and my all time favorite, plain ol' blueberries with milk/cream and sugar (in a bowl) -- that's all from me!"

"Better than any argument is to rise at dawn and pick dew-wet red berries in a cup."
"I am not bound for any public place, but for ground of my own where I have planted vines and orchard trees, and in the heat of the day climbed up into the healing shadow of the woods."
"I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief... For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free."
"We learn from our gardens to deal with the most urgent question of the time: How much is enough?"
~Wendell Berry

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Arriving At Camp

Well, I finally did it. I got the Jeep's transmission problem solved, paid for, and created the freedom to spend 12 days of July at one of my favorite fish camps in N. Ontario. Cameron Lake Fishing Lodges, Inc. Whew. I'm feeling oh so much better.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

It's The Berries

The last week of June my Jeep took a nosedive and I canceled my N. Ontario fishing trip while I waited for a new transmission. Spending a few thousand dollars on something as boring as a new transmission and hanging close to home was not what I had planned for any week this summer. It was the pits! Although, I have had some curious lifestyle insights as I look at things close up and close to home.

Have you heard the term “food miles?” Food miles is the distance a food travels from where it is grown to your plate. The term food miles is used to address the energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions (contributing to climate change) attached with each food we purchase.

And I do my share of adding on the food miles. From my home, it’s a 16-mile round trip to the nearest grocery store. And if I were to count the food miles it takes me to collect the fish I eat all year long, it would be an astronomical number.

But during my week without transportation, I turned to the “groceries” close to home. The area around my home is loaded with wild berries. I’m delighted by just about all berries, straw (last month), blue (this month), and black and rasp (next month) are my favorites. Blueberries in particular, according to those who are more health conscious than I, will keep me living perhaps much longer than I want. Now maybe the anti-oxidant property of blueberries is just propaganda, but if they’re free and they taste great right off the bush, then why not? The rain we’ve had in June has made this year’s crop of blueberries big, juicy and sweet. I’ve already picked and frozen enough to get me through an entire year.

Unfortunately, the dogs are also partial to the berries. I will have just found a nice patch for picking, settle in with my bucket, and one or both of the dogs will come grazing through and strip berries off the plants like they were machines made for the task. What they might have missed, is left all slobbery on the bush. Then my pups sit at an inappropriately close distance to me and not so quietly hack up the leaves that got caught in their throats during their berry pillage.

I was at the bank the other day, rearranging finances in order to pay for my new transmission, when I mentioned to Shelly, my new savior in the transmission incident, that I would be drowning in blueberries if I didn’t get the Jeep back on the road soon. Between the two of us, we came up with seven ways to prepare blueberries; blueberry muffins, blueberry pancakes, blueberry pie, blueberry slump, blueberry cobbler, blueberry crisp and blueberry buckle. I’m looking for more, so feel free to send them on.

All in all, it’s has not a bad way to spend some forced time off.

“I think it's always best to be who you are.” ~Halle Berry

“You can say any foolish thing to do to a dog, and the dog will give you a look that says, 'My God, you're right! I never would've thought of that!'” ~Dave Berry

“Don't let the same dog bite you twice.” ~Chuck Berry

Sunday, June 11, 2006

What's Your Hurry?

I've puttered the weekend away. I weeded the garden, cut some fresh flowers for the house, moved some gravel in the driveway, washed some windows, and spent quite a bit of time in the hammock reading. I must admit I felt occasional twinges of guilt about my indulgence, but not enough to overcome my pleasure. 

Around all this self-imposed down time, I shuttled canoeists who were paddling the Manistee River near my home. The “put-in” was not too bad. They picked me up at my home about 5:30 on Friday evening, bought me dinner, and we drove to their put-in campsite. That night, they camped and I brought their vehicle home with me. Reportedly, they were on the river by 5:30 Saturday morning. The “take-out” was another story. My phone rang about 11:30 Saturday night. They were ready to be picked up as they had decided to do the entire weekend trip in one spurt, 100 miles in less than 24 hours. I got up, dressed, made a pot of coffee and headed for the take-out landing.

It was a beautiful night. The moon was full and casting shadows. It was a crisp night and the fog was settling in. At the take-out, I could hear a partridge drumming. And the deer were everywhere. I can only imagine how beautiful it must have been paddling that river after dark. I've paddled at night before. It's truly an exotic and eerie experience. But most of my night paddling has been out of necessity, to escape a bear who has made my camp his home or because the fish were biting.

And truly, I can only imagine the beauty these paddlers experienced, because they were too tired to talk about it. I'm totally confused as to why a group of good friends would want to spend a whole day and half a night on the river without hardly speaking or seeing each other and subjecting themselves to the food one must eat while moving in a canoe without the benefit of a campfire. They didn't even paddle together as the group arrived at the take-out over the course of the next four hours.

Many of us do the same thing in our daily lives. We push and strive to get somewhere, to get ahead, to beat the clock in some way, to attain something, to make good on a promise. And when we reach our destination we have little or no memory of the experience because we've often taken it on alone or, in our haste, left our partners behind. We're stiff and tired. We are even too tired to share our experience with anyone as the thought of restoration is the only thing that permeates our mind.

Today, I'm enjoying a beautiful Sunday morning with more of the same quiet reflection and small chores ahead of me. I imagine my canoeing friends are sound asleep. Any day, I’ll take the sweet obsessions that wander through my thoughts and daydreams over the mania that now demands their dreamless sleep.

“One of the great disadvantages of hurry is that it takes such a long time.” ~G. K. Chesterton

“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.” ~Winnie the Pooh

“Nature does not hurry. Yet everything is accomplished.” ~Lao Tzu

Saturday, May 20, 2006

The Portage Trail

I named my business Portage because I love backcountry canoeing and fishing. And my favorite part of these backcountry activities is portaging from one lake to another, either to continue my canoeing route or to find the next great fishing lake. 

Portage means carrying a canoe or boat over land to avoid a water obstacle like rapids or a waterfall or to get from one navigable water body to another. I found the definition a wonderful metaphor for what I do as a coach.

As a coach, I help folks navigate their personal transitions, from where they are at the moment to where they want to be and, at the same time, discover and deal with the obstacles they need to go around.

Portaging generally requires unloading the boat or canoe and carrying it and its contents over the portage trail. If it's a portage that many have taken before you, the path can be quite clear of obstacles and easy to navigate. On other portages a trail must be blazed and the terrain can be very difficult.

As a coach, I do the same, helping my clients decide what they want to take with them on their next transition and what no longer serves them and is best left behind. I help you find the path that others may have taken before. And if there is no similar path, I help you blaze a new trail.

To portage efficiently, a tump line on your pack, which goes around your forehead, and a yoke or tump line on your canoe are valued tools. The tump line sounds awkward but with the bearing of your load beginning at your forehead, it helps distribute that weight evenly and efficiently down your spine. It's incredibly more efficient than having your load begin at your shoulders. This is the way the early voyageurs and natives managed their portages.
I guess I could have named my business Tump Line or Yoke as a metaphor for those things that make the Portage easier, but they're not very pretty words. You'd all be laughing and the “yoke” would be on me. But as a coach, I do have a wealth of "tools" to help you transition with the least amount of discomfort.

Portages can be very short as in a few rods or meters to many miles or kilometers in length. And all portages, by their nature, are the result of elevation changes. Either the destination lake is higher or lower than the one you are leaving, or the land between two bodies of water rises and falls, or, as in the case of a river, the elevation of the river changes dramatically creating swift rapids or a waterfall that must be safely portaged around. This results in all portages involving some climbing and/or descending.

This is not unlike a personal transition, although the elevation changes are emotional rather than physical. I've discovered over the years that there are four distinct stages in every transition. First is the stage I call Discomfort where one is reluctant, fearful, uncertain and often reactive and edgy. The second stage I call
Going Internal but it is no less emotional as one becomes more contemplative, protective, spiritual, and often detached and withdrawn. Can you picture the portage trail? So far it's an uphill trek with a heavy load. In the
third stage, Exploration, we begin to feel like we have some direction. We're beginning to crest the peak of the portage trail and we can often look ahead instead of constantly down at our feet in order to avoid pitfalls. We find new reserves of energy and become optimistic, confident and even eager. This is the stage where our vision for the future begins to emerge, much like reaching the peak of the portage trail. And the final and
fourth stage is Renaissance. We become committed and creative as everything begins to feel possible. We move at a faster pace. On the portage trail, this is the wonderful downhill stage where the new vista is clearly in front of you and your load is lighter as you shift from trudging uphill to flowing downhill.

The thing to remember about portages, as in transitions, is that Renaissance feels like it will last forever. But sooner or later we become restless. Then we find ourselves looking for the next portage and the newness it holds at the other end.

"Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." ~Ralph Waldo

Thanks for listening and humoring me this month. See you on the Portage.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006


I'm fresh back from our Life Transitions retreat in the Virgin Islands. What a wonderful group of adventurous individuals we had this year. My co-host, Patt Osborne, and I would like to thank all who attended. This one was the best ever. 

So, as you can imagine, I still had transitions in mind when I sat down to write and so I thought I’d share some of the things we learned at the 2006 Rest of Your Life Retreat.

So in celebration of my 10th year of Transition Coaching...

"It's never too late to become what you might have been." ~George Eliot

Transitions can be as soft as a whisper or as loud as an earthquake.

Sometimes a transition starts as an internal shift, as in a new way of looking at things. Sometimes, a transition is brought on by external forces like a job transfer or loss of someone near to you.

Every transition is accompanied by a shift in the way we identify ourselves. If we plan the transition, the identity shift is often a prelude to the actual, physical changes in our life. If the transition is driven by outside forces, our identity is often forced to catch up. Either way, a big part of every transition is reconciling our old beliefs with our new identity

Using our intuition is critical to a smooth transition. We can transition more deeply and more profoundly by paying very close attention to our intuitive insights, that inner voice of our authentic desires. 

When we allow our desires, and allow ourselves to become one who already has whatever it is we're wanting, we bring more of our authentic selves to the transition. These desires provide direction and clues to our path, a path where what we want includes who we are.

In that moment when we allow our desires to come from our authenticity, our transition ceases to come from us, but rather through us. We must then, be receptive to something greater.

Often, in the process of “acting on” our transition, the creative option of “allowing” ourselves to be receptive to that greater force is missed.

We merely must wait and be attentive to its arrival of that which we desire.

It is far more beautiful, graceful and gratifying to become attractive and receive than to chase things.

Slow down, tune in, and heed the inner call. As you transition, be ready, willing, and able to accept your new identity.

"Any transition serious enough to alter your definition of self will require not just small adjustments in your way of living and thinking but a full-on metamorphosis." ~Martha Beck

Monday, March 20, 2006

A Fly In My House

There's a fly in my house. It has been here for two days. It's smaller and looks different than the house flies I've seen all winter. And it's bigger than a fruit fly, so I know it didn't come from the bananas in the kitchen. I'm excited. It's the first sign of spring! This fly may be a misfit, but I'm pretty attracted to the misfits of this world and thrilled to have it in my life.

So it was a short leap from this misfit, the fly, to this month's newsletter. Hey, no excuses for the strange wanderings of my mind. That's the point.

The Top Ten Ways to Enjoy Being a Misfit:
  1. What causes you to be labeled a misfit is the very thing that makes you an individualist. Explore it! 
  2. Your “misfit-ness” is often your strength. Hone it!
  3. If being a misfit looks like fun, others will follow you. Flaunt it!
  4. Every circumstance in  which you find yourself unsuitable is an opportunity to learn something new. Uncover it!
  5. When you stand out, you have a better chance of being heard. Say it!
  6. People will talk about you. Use it!
  7. Expanding on that which makes you different will elevate you to one of a kind. Enjoy it!
  8. Misfits often look at things from slightly different angles. Notice it!
  9. Misfits tend to question accepted views and to consider contradictory ones. Challenge it!
  10. Just like the fly in my house, if you're the only one out there, the lanes are wide open! Floor it! 
First, ask yourself “Am I a misfit in any way?” And if so, don't concern yourself with hiding or compensating for it. But instead, ask yourself, “How can I expand that to other areas of my life?” Because today's misfit is tomorrow's maverick.

    “Man is physically as well as metaphysically a thing of shreds and patches, borrowed unequally from good and bad ancestors, and a misfit from the start” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Sunday, February 26, 2006

    Fishing Lesson

    Besides being an absolute blast, fishing has taught me a few things about repositioning myself to get out of old habits in order to experience new things. Some fishing days you're right on. You've got the right lure, with the right color. You've found the perfect spot and you're retrieving the lure or trolling at the ideal speed. The day is good. The weather conditions are outstanding (which in the world of fishing could mean high winds and rain). The fish are really biting and you can do nothing wrong.

    The next day you repeat the same activities, lures, timing and location and nothing will bite. You're still feeling the adrenaline from the outstanding day before and so the temptation is to continue to repeat the patterns that worked so well just a day ago. You've just developed a bad habit…sticking with something that rewarded you once but is no longer working. You've got to change if you want to have more fun. You have to experiment with color, patterns and location and let the fish tell you what they want. Yes, you've got to be able to trust your equipment. But more importantly, you've got to trust your instincts.

    If our position is familiar and comfortable, one we know well, and standing in that position has rewarded us in the past, it can be a very stale place if it's no longer working for us.

    Hey, what's not working for you these days? Are you not seeing it clearly? Try repositioning yourself. First look at it straight on and then look at it from all angles. Try some new tools or equipment. Change your schedule. Get messy and use your intuition. Try a new pattern. What's the worse that can happen? New insight and perspective is always a good thing.

    "When you are reluctant to face something, you are not positioned to see it clearly." ~Pam McConnell

    Monday, January 02, 2006


    As I was pondering my thoughts for this New Year in anticipation of writing in January, I found myself reflecting instead on the past. Allowing myself to follow the urge, I reviewed some of my writings over the past six years. And there I found a lot that is still true for me today. Yes, I know I wander. And I know I've admitted to you that my truth is my truth for the moment. I've warned you that I will contradict myself. So I was surprised to see how much is still true for me today.

    So instead of a 2006 New Year article, I've gone back and summarized twelve things that are still true for me today. I'm going to take one each month of 2006 and focus on it as my personal theme for the month. Here the are. Enjoy!

    In January I'm Surrendering:
    Surrender control rather than seize it. Let go and trust. A life full of preparation for situations that are yet only imagined is not much of a life at all.

    In February I Will Step Into the Unknown:
    One of the most powerful things we can do is step fully, freely and without hesitation into the unknown. To become comfortable with the unknown is to experience freedom. To make the leap without all the answers, to step into the darkness without expectation of what is to come, to embrace the unknown as not just a place to begin but a place in which we wallow, rest and soak up our inner essence is incredibly powerful. The unknown is where your imagination can take hold. And it's imagination that transcends time and place.

    In March I Will Focus on Having Enough:
    When enough truly is enough, what we desire moves in and out of our life naturally. There is enough for us; there is enough for everyone. We have the ability and freedom to nurture others and ourselves. When we appreciate the enough-ness in our lives, our enough-ness appreciates.

    In April I’ll be a Child in Nature:
    In nature, I more easily find time to connect with myself. It was only after I grew up and met so many other adults who did not “take to the wilds” that I realized that extracting oneself from nature tends to leave a person a little off. Wilderness for me is an instant transfusion. Nature is authentic. It is exactly what it seems to be. Be a grownup if you must. But be a grownup who knows the secrets children know. Go to the wilds.

    In May I’ll Remember to be Without Goals:
    Stop making excuses. If you're saying, “I’ll be dancing lightly when I achieve my goals,” you're missing out. I say dance lightly now and let your goals come to you out of that joy. Step into your delight, happiness, joy and let success find you. Life is a process, not a product. No stop along the way or altered path is a mistake. Turn your back on the product, the outcome, the goal, and pay attention to enjoying the process, the hunt. Then the elusive will present itself. It always does. It has no choice.

    In June, I’ll Step Into the Flow:
    Flow is not always the shortest path. When the creek encounters resistance, like a rock, a downed tree or the dam the beavers are building just down stream from me, it does not go through that block. The creek is not concerned with keeping the path short. It goes around, over or underneath the resistance as a way to stay in flow. Yes, over time, it wears down the resistance, but that's not its primary concern. So like the creek, when we take the path of least resistance, we too flow. Is your vision something you mentally design and, if done right, leads to flow? Perhaps. But it might take more than a few tries to get it right. I like to believe that vision is something that comes to you when you are in flow. My suggestion—go stand in a creek.

    In July I’ll Hone My Skills at Becoming Lost:
    The price we pay for the freedom of being lost is to be vulnerable. The gift we receive from the freedom of being lost is new, unexpected and random things like unforeseen circumstances, interesting people and odd surroundings. It stimulates us. If we pay the price of vulnerability, we can let go of being threatened simply because we are lost. We learn to not waste our energy panicking about the direction we should take.

    In August I’ll Take On Opportunities Rather than Musing About Possibilities:
    Yes, we can remain on the riverbank and discuss and wonder at the possibilities. But the river is going somewhere. There are trees, streams, rocks and trails on the other side waiting to be explored. There are fish to be caught! There are people along the river who have stories to tell about their own opportunities taken. Find the opportunity in the possibility and take it.

    In September I’ll Relish Being Much Less Than Perfect:
    When we let go of perfection, allow ourselves to do things imperfectly, we come to see how perfect we are, just the way we are. It's a subtle difference but it's true. Our lives can be more perfect when we let go of perfection.

    In October I’ll Explore New Rhythms:
    Our own rhythmic actions have a common thread with the Universe. It would serve us well to note that our accomplishments are not solely a result of our skills and knowledge. Our accomplishments also come from our choice of rhythm. Our rhythm or cadence comes from our use of time, space and motion. As we learn our own rhythm, changing it in a heartbeat when we feel the urge, we learn to listen and know. We listen and know others. We listen and know nature. We listen and know ourselves. And the songs we sing out into the world, each with their own unique rhythm, will continue long after we're gone.

    In November I’ll be Freely Vulnerable:
    What is so frightening and at the same time so wonderful about a new beginning? What excites me is the freedom inherent in every new beginning. What scares me is that I am vulnerable. Yet I can't separate the two. If I'm to be free, I'm to be vulnerable. I become energized by the possibility of freedom that a new beginning brings. When I seek to lessen my vulnerability by trying to cover all the contingencies, I actually diminish my freedom and the new beginning becomes too small for me. Our lives and work must envelop freedom or they come down to nothing more than a means of providing.

    In December I’ll Ride Into 2007 on My Intuition:
    Trust your intuition and your dreams. Be open to possibility. See the unlikely. Think the unthinkable. Imagine the improbable. Life's biggest opportunities are often hidden to all but our intuition.

    "There are many spokes on the wheel of life. First, we're here to explore new possibilities." ~Ray Charles