What makes you blush?

Is it when someone gives you a compliment?screen-shot-2016-09-26-at-10-15-25-pm

Is it when someone points out you did not keep your commitment?

Is it when a public figure says something anathema to your belief system?

Whatever it is that makes you blush, it may be an indicator deserving of your attention. A blush deserving further personal exploration.

In that compliment someone may be noticing a gift or talent the world needs more of.

In that criticism, a reflection of a barrier you may have unwittingly created to prevent yourself from realizing your full potential.

In those comments that are out of alignment with your values may be an invitation to get involved with an issue or an organization.

The next time your perfectly perfect self blushes, that outward response may be a reaction to an inward yearning.

Photo source: narscosmetics.com

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The Amazings

Recently I had dinner with two phenomenal women – amazing women actually. Each exceptionally accomplished. Yet firmly grounded in the reality of living – the good, the bad, the important, the yucky, and all matters of chaos, messiness and muddlings that get mixed throughout the living.

What was wonderfully striking about our dinner was the absence of chit-chat. We immediately engaged in the sincere discussion of living lives. The values we bring to the living. How those values challenge and enlighten the living. Where we find support for living our values. The values that matter and how we go after more of those values.

1484324430_7581e20f50_nAs we said our good byes, I was reminded of author Sophfronia Scott’s quote, “Build your ark before the flood.”

Yes, absolutely build your ark before the flood. And absolutely, positively stuff it to overflowing with Amazings.

Amazings who honor and value you. Amazings who care about perfectly, perfect you with all of your glaring imperfections and foibles. Amazings who stand arm-in-arm with you on your ark or around a dinner table.

Who are your Amazings on your ark?

 
photo credit: ARK via photopin (license)

Stop the show

Before understanding right from wrong, being good from being bad, we knew as young babes how to effectively advocate – so much so, sometimes requiring the attention and action of multiple adults.

As we begin to learn how to speak and learn societal norms – the yes pleases, the no thank yous, the yes sirs and no mams – the trade-off for some, seems to be less effective advocacy.

Not the case for pre-teen Nina Simone as shared by the National Women’s History Museum:

Nina Simone - Singer, Pianist, Civil Rights Activist, Journalist (1933–2003)

Nina Simone – Singer, Pianist, Civil Rights Activist, Journalist (1933–2003)

In 1945 when singer and pianist Nina Simone was just 12 years old, her parents tried to sit up front to see her piano recital. They were moved to the back to make room for white guests. Simone refused to play until her parents were moved back up front and her lifelong involvement with civil rights was born.

It takes courage and fortitude to advocate for your values whether you’re 12, 32, 62 or 102. Advocating for your values is not for the faint of heart. You will lose friends. You will be called names. You will be ridiculed. You may be threatened.

Having the courage to stop the show insures the music you value will play on for a lifetime and beyond.

Let your perfectly, perfect voice sing your beautiful song because no one can sing it like you can!

 

(Photograph by Jack Robinson, the Jack Robinson Archive, LLC; www.robinsonarchive.com)

No one’s watching

Commitment.  Some are made publicly and some are made privately.

How do you treat your commitments when they’re just between you and your beautiful self?  Will you carry through or give yourself a break because after all, who’s really watching?

Be true to yourself!

 

 

 

 

Mirror image

What happens to your big dream when you go along to get along?

What happens to the outcomes of your first high profile project when you go along to get along?

What happens to your personal values when you go along to get along?

When you go along to get along, who do you see reflected in the mirror? Is she your perfectly, perfect brilliant self or someone else?