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Archive for the ‘Moving Forward’ Category

When I reference Groundhog Day, I can’t help but think of that hysterical 1993 movie starring Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell. If you have never seen it (although I would question where you’ve been!), Bill Murray’s character experiences the same Groundhog Day over and over again. Each time the day starts again, he adjusts based on what he knows will happen so he can get it “just right”.

This movie has me reflecting on two lessons I have learned over the years that look a lot like this Bill Murray’s character’s experience:

  • My days of living the Groundhog Day life in my career and business are over. I learned early on in corporate to save everything- every file, every document and every email trail- because invariably the senior leadership team would reposition an old project or initiative as a brand new, enterprise-wide opportunity in which I could be put in charge. Common practice was to pull out those saved files, relabel them and start over again. It got so bad in 2002 that I bought my entire team a copy of the movie! (VHS of course) Today as an entrepreneur everything is new -every day. No reusing ideas for me. It is all fresh and exciting. No more slapping another name or spin on an initiative and calling it new! Phew– However, I am free to reuse those fabulous corporate ideas at my corporate clients all day long!
  • The Universe will continue to put similar people, situations and opportunities in my path until I learn the lesson I am here to learn. And it is often equal parts frustrating and hysterical.  Like the movie Groundhog Day, I just keep coming back to the scenario over and over again, adjusted a bit each time, until I make the major shift. The most recent lessons have been painful and tear-filled but the “other side” is looks like days of endless rainbows compared to the ways I was living tied to those toxic people, places and things.

Where is that happening in your life?

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Coffee Location:  My sofa watching the NY Giants on SNF
Today’s Beverage of Choice: Coffee and chocolate protein shake

 

 

 

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Have I Been a Modern-Day Rip Van Winkle?

Have I been sleeping?
Sleeping though part of my life?

I feel like Rip Van Winkle. I loved that little story from my childhood.
My mother would tell me that when there was scary thunder that I did not need to worry because it was just Rip Van Winkle bowling.
However, recently I actually read the story again after all these years and learned that Rip is described in many of the versions by creator Washington Irving as a “henpecked husband who loathes ‘profitable labor’ “.

Now that is really taking the comparison of Rip and me a bit too far.  I am neither a henpecked husband nor a person who loathes profitable labor… but walking around constantly exhausted from living in indecision and not working or living as my very best self certainly makes life and business less profitable. So, looking a little like a modern-day Rip Van Winkle.

On Sunday, November 12 it changed. I woke up and came down that figurative mountain as Rip did in the story and basically declared,  “I CHOOSE ME!” Made the decision.Immediately slowed down the wondering, worrying and spinning!

  • I choose me.
  • I choose to see my life as it really is, not a warped version of how I wish it to be.
  • I choose to forge ahead as the best self I can be today.

This new decision has had an immediate impact on my business model, my relationships and my home. 

In future blog posts, I will talk about this in more detail (all a part of my 40 day vulnerability challenge).
However, for tonight I just wanted to pose these questions…

  • Where in your life are you “sleeping”?
  • Where are you looking at life in fantasy rather than reality?
  • Where are you acting like a modern-day Rip Van Winkle?

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I cry every time I vote.

Presidential election. Mayoral election. Local elections. It doesn’t matter.

I cry.

Proudly.

I don’t hide it.

Right there at the polls. Tears streaming down my face.

 

 

The sheer overwhelm of it all:

  • That there are women in the United States still old enough to remember when they could not vote. Before 1920. Before the 19th Amendment to the Constitution. Less than 100 years ago.
  • That there are women around the world who were granted that right in MY lifetime or still cannot cast a vote in an election specifically because they are women.
  • That men and women of the military are fighting this very moment to allow me to retain that right. The right to voice my opinion and vote without fear of retaliation for my family or myself.

And here is what I know about me. When I cry, it means that there is something there for me to learn. Something to look at.  An issue that is moving me to tears and demands my attention. Time to study something new.

Full disclosure: I have bookcases filled with books, arranged by category (my own little Dewey Decimal system) and just waiting to be read, studied and poured over. There is certainly a “women’s rights section” (do you have one also?) Certainly there are a few books in there on the women’s suffragist movement here in the United States and around the world.  Heck, I went to Wellesley College,  grew up in Rochester, NY- home of the National Susan B Anthony Museum and House and right down the road from Seneca Falls and the National Women’s Hall of Fame– so there ought to be more than a few books on the topic in my collection.

I have interest. I have motivation. I have desire. I have emotional connection. I have resources.

NOW… and you will have to hold me to this… I must make TIME. Don’t get me wrong- I have time. I must simply choose to use it in this way.

 

 

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(written 10/30 but posted 10/31)

There are not a lot of situations more vulnerable than a disaster in your backyard.

I suppose I should view this as no coincidence –making a decision to blog about vulnerability for 40 days on the eve of Hurricane Sandy.

There is a lot to say but currently having a hard time putting my thoughts about the hurricane and its devastating impact on the tri-state area into perspective. My home did not lose power. I was safe and warm last night unlike many people in New York and New Jersey. Just plain worried about my friends and former neighbors in the horrific flooding. Many still trapped. Many have lost so much.

And I struggled all day- unfocused, craving community and wanting to check in on everyone I loved—calling it “hurricane brain”.  Then, I realized I feel a lot like I did 11 years ago. September 11, 2001.

I thought I would share a bit of writing that I did about that day but I can’t find it and that makes me sad. It’s an emotional piece I wrote for the Wellesley alumni magazine that was never published but spoke of my first hand sighting of the traumatic events and the community building I experienced that day.  Maybe I can’t find that essay for a reason because now, instead, I will focus on today and the people I love and determine what ways I can support them. Even just a text or a call. Feeling helpless and unable to make an impact is such a vulnerable feeling. Need to believe that love is enough right now.

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I moved. It’s official.

  • New apartment.
  • New neighborhood.
  • New community.
  • New possibilities.

This move, like every other move of every other person I know in life, brought with it anxiety, fear, lessons learned and opportunities for growth (not that I was looking for any more of those but there they were in their full glory!)

Moving stirred up such big emotions for me. That is why they call this life event one of the top stressors in our lives. No surprise there.

What I did learn about myself is that moving – on the whole- did not make me anxious. In fact, it is really quite a methodical process that lends itself nicely to lists, checkmarks and post-it notes.  The “unknown” and the “unplanned” makes me anxious.

For example, I was far more concerned about the fact that there was only one elevator in my new building to be used for my move and 80 units of people going about their daily routine than I was about packing up my entire apartment. Very telling about me. And super uncomfortable to look at. Did not want to rock the boat or make waves. Did not want to get started on the wrong foot with neighbors.  Wanted people to like me. But everyone moves.- I know that.  Everyone uses the elevator all day to move at least once.  The anxiety came in not knowing what would or could happen until it did on moving day. There was really no post-it note process I could attach to this. I just had to dive in and move. Although I will say that my dear friend and fellow entrepreneur (an expert in the area of organization) Jennifer Zwiebel had some fun ideas that helped to calm me down- most of which included baskets of muffins!

Fast-forward. Every single person in my building was welcoming, upbeat and understanding.  And I got another one of those great insights into myself on a deeper level. (yeah me!)

Ready for a little irony? All this worry, and after living here for a month, the elevator broke and has been out of service for a full week. I now essentially live in a 5 floor walk-up. 

**Grateful that I am healthy enough to walk those stairs effortlessly several times a day.

**Grateful that I am not the cause of the inconvenience.

**Grateful that this week was not moving week!

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It is Back to School time and there in nothing that charges me more and sends my creativity buzzing! (other than a little snow!)

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First of all- Blog Community. This note is an apology for my MIA attitude over the past few months. Lots of changes. Lots of introspection. Holding in and not writing it out. Just processing and taking the necessary forward actions to get myself to this place. It is all good. It is all another fabulous growth opportunity.

But now it is time to share.

Over the next few weeks, I want to reveal many of the lessons learned in life and business throughout the inner work I did this summer. All to prepare me for this Back to School season.  And all hopefully of help to you in your own personal transformation (we are all in one now, aren’t we?)

Changes were plentiful.

Some really obvious to all– I moved.

Some much more under wraps– I struggled financially as my business model shifted.

Some even hidden from me until I could see them– I got crystal clear about what my big dream is.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

I want to say that I will commit to 90 days of daily blogging as my friend and fellow blogger Payson Cooper did- but instead I will start with 7 days. 7 days of continuous blogging and we will see where that goes. Stay tuned!

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This time of year is filled with it. Can you feel it all around?

It is palatable in the air… Nope, “it” is not happiness or hopefulness. “It” is not positive attitude or determination.

It is fear. Fear and regret.

Oh it is veiled in the smile and happy announcement of someone’s New Year’s resolutions. Or it is buried beneath the announcement of “2012 will be the best year ever!”

But I can hear it. It is not that I am looking for fear and regret. It is not that I wish it on anyone. Maybe I am like a dog that can hear sounds no one else can hear- but I cannot deny I hear it as the underlying message this time of year especially. Heck, I have done it a time or two myself.

  • Belaboring on what did not get done the year before
  • Focusing on what you don’t have and how you will get it this year
  • Looking around at what everyone else is doing
  • Devising the elaborate plan (that you are not even sure you can pull off) to meet that goal- a goal built on fear and regret

I am sure you can see how this just sets you up for feeling like you are already behind the 8-ball and that you better dance faster and faster until you spin out of control…

Okay, wait- maybe I am just talking to myself. Have you already figured this out?

This year, I want things to feel different. Definition of insanity, right? Keep doing the same things over and over expecting different results. Time for Bryn to shake things up.

Time to STOP THE INSANITY!

My New Year really begins this week, not last week with the 1st of the year. Yesterday was my birthday. Today is my company anniversary. Great week for celebration. Great week to leave fear and regret in the dust.

In fact, I will let you in on a little secret…

About 2 weeks ago, I made the decision to CHOOSE JOY. Always. In every scenario.

Joy. Find joy in every encounter. See joy in every interaction. Discover joy in each opportunity.

I have always been a positive person but this shift is about CHOOSING joy. Choosing to see it, find it and create it…rather than falling back into fear. And wow everything has shifted so quickly. I am still building the “choose joy muscle” but for me it is all in taking the action and waiting to see what joy will fill my heart. Could it really be that simple?

Could I really build an entire business starting from JOY?

Could I really have all the things I want in life, love and business by choosing JOY?

Well I really believe that I can…in fact, it is happening right now!

And as a member of my community, you will have a front row seat to the transformation. As with everything else I do, I will be completely transparent with this part of my journey…to inspire, help, encourage and challenge you and others. We are going to have so much fun CHOOSING JOY!

Join me?

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