walking down the street

hole in sidwalkThis is one of my all-time favorite stories on self-discovery.  Sometimes it is easier to understand concepts when they are told in the form of a story.  I often think of this when I am learning new things about myself.  It helps me to see where I am in the process.


Autobiography in Five Short Chapters
by Portia Nelson

Chapter One

I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I fall in.
I am lost …. I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter Two

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in this same place.
But, it isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter Three

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in … it’s a habit … but,
my eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.

Chapter Four

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

Chapter Five

I walk down another street.

It is amazing when that day arrives and you can clearly see the hole in the sidewalk and consciously make the choice to walk down another street.

Yours in transformation,



green, green grass

green grassYou’ve all heard the saying, “The grass is greener on the other side”, and I suspect that most of you have found that to be true as you’ve gone from one patch of green grass to another.  At first, you may think your new patch of grass is greener, but one day you notice it has lost some of its color.  It doesn’t seem as green as it used to be and you start dreaming of what the next green patch will look like.  From your current perspective, that next patch will definitely be better.  What is it that makes us think this over and over again despite proof to the contrary?

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ahhh…the spa

foot soak1Last week at work was very busy with all the Positivity Week festivities.  Residents and staff enjoyed watching the conga lines going through the halls, and the art festival was a big hit, bringing people together to create something positive.  The week has left me feeling tired from all the extra work and stress of having to organize some of the activities.  Something I’ve learned about myself when organizing events is that I tend to be a perfectionist.  I have a picture in my head of how everything will look and it causes me stress when things don’t go that way.  I am learning slowly, over time, that things will be fine even if they don’t measure up to my level of perfection.  So, in order to release some of the tension from the week, my friend Springy and I treated ourselves to a morning at the spa.  It was the perfect way to end the week and recover my soul by way of my feet.

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positivity week

be positiveThere is no shortage of information on the power of positive thinking.  Many books have been written on the subject and many people have been quoted on their statements of positivity.  Optimism is a way of life for some and you can always tell who they are.  Optimistic people stand out from the crowd, they radiate positivity, and make things happen.  Many are leaders in today’s world.  If there is so much information available on the subject, why is it so difficult for us to remain positive?  Our attitude easily falls prey to the daily struggles we all face.  We then become part of a stream of negativity that works its way from one person to the next.  It is like a toxic river flowing through the land, poisoning each thing it touches.  This week we will celebrate positivity at my workplace to remind us of the power of a positive attitude and how it can make a difference in our day.

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crossing streamYou’re walking through the woods on a warm, bright Spring day.  Everything is a lush green color highlighted by the sunlight’s rays streaming down through the branches.  The path is grassy and wide and curves down a small hill.  At the foot of the hill is a stream, running full and strong powered by the heavy winter’s snow melt.  The water runs over the pathway, and the grass that is covered by the water sways with the current.  There are several large rocks carefully placed by nature to allow pedestrians to cross.  You carefully step on each of the rocks as you make your way across the small stream.   You stop to watch the water flow and reach to touch it.  It is cold and clear and rushes past your hand.  You can see everything beneath the water:  the rocks, the grass, the leftover fall leaves, and other small plants that hold on tight to keep from being swept away.  The scent is intoxicating, fresh and clean.  The sound is mesmerizing and your senses struggle to take it all in.  When you are ready, you continue past the brook and up the hill leading in to the woods.  Where will you go today?  How will you know when you’re there?

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monitor thyself

observe yourselfWhen my children were young, I asked them to learn to become monitors of themselves.  As a parent, I wanted them to become aware of their surroundings and their feelings so that they could keep themselves safe while away from home.  I wanted them to think for themselves because I would not always be there to do it for them.  I asked them to notice their behaviors and monitor if they were being appropriate in situations.  I knew they would act a certain way around their friends, but they needed to learn to adjust those actions when out in public.  It was important for them to learn boundaries and respect for others.  I also told them to trust their feelings and if they were at someone’s home and felt uncomfortable, that they could take the steps they needed to remove themselves from the situation.  I wanted them to learn to trust their higher voice, to be able to monitor their emotions and use them as guides.

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constant vigilance

awarenessMy boss is always using the term “constant vigilance” to remind us to keep our eyes out for issues that would cause us to get a tag in a state survey.  Once a year, the nursing home must undergo a state survey, where a team of surveyors come into the facility and check on all our systems.  It is a stressful time, but if we always do our jobs in accordance with the rules, then we know there will be no worries when survey comes.  Constant vigilance is needed year round to ensure that the needs of our residents are being met and that we are operating under proper procedure.  It is also needed in our personal lives to ensure that we are making choices in accordance with our values and what we want for our future.

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