20 Wisdoms

My one and only daughter is turning 20 this weekend! Wow. Time goes by so incredibly quickly. Since she is turning 20 I thought I should give her some type of wisdom, so here is what I came up with. I figured it truly does have some great wisdom for any age, so I hope you can find something here to spark a little wisdom for your own life.

Take what you need to live your best, happy-filled life.

20 WISDOMS for your 20’s

1. YOU are SPECIAL. If I could give you one thing in life, I would give you the ability to see yourself through my eyes, only then would you realize how special you are.  -Frida Kahlo     You are working towards dreams, finding role models to admire, learning from those around you, finding your wings of independence. You may not always feel very special, but YOU are the one and only YOU of all time. You are striving daily to become that distant dream. Keep going, keep dreaming and as long as you are striving to be better each day by learning and growing–you will get there.  Your dreams will help you see you through. Remember that you are special, divine and began as star dust. That should always be a simple reminder of the brilliance that is within you & always has been.

2. HOLD TIGHT TO THOSE THAT MATTER MOST. When I date someone, I think long term. What is the point of dating someone if you only want them temporarily? College is full of young people confused by who they are or who they want to be. They are still developing, stuck in alternate realities of thinking and still in a very big stage of fitting in and following. Be true to your values and who you want to be surrounded by.  Think about people long term and ask yourself if you will grow old with them? Will they make you a better person? Will your relationship be building and help you grow? Are they aligned with your personal values? Do you honestly see them as a long term person in your life? Hold tight to those friends and people who care and who you can see will be there for you for the long term.

3. CONTINUE TO CHASE THOSE THINGS THAT LIGHT YOU UP.  Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.– Jennifer Lee   Following your internal feelings will always help guide you to where you need to be for your best life. YOU know what excites you, drives you, creates passion and ignites you…follow those things. Chase them with all your heart. They will guide you to those places of flow, purpose, light, love and an overall sense of a vibrant, full and happy life. In the meantime, chase light. Chase things that make you feel alive, passions that fill your soul, ideas and dreams that keep you up at night. Chase things that taste like freedom, that make your mind spin with joy. Chase light in the sense of fostering it within yourself and the people around you.

4. CHALLENGE FEAR. A life lived in fear is a life half lived. – Spanish Proverb  Fear is the opposite spectrum of LOVE. In every instance you feel fear, break through to yourself and challenge your very being with the full intent to go beyond, to step forward in confidence, to channel the great strength you have within you to live fully and not give into the fear that will continually strive to stop, hinder, challenge, scare, intimidate & long to win. DONT GIVE IN. ALWAYS CHOOSE LOVE over FEAR…Challenge the fear and choose love every time.

5. SAY YES  Always say yes, put yourself in danger of something amazing happening to you.  Say yes to those opportunities, incredible people, moments that will help you grow, invitations to learn or try something new…take bold steps by saying yes to things that scare, challenge, bring fear or make you want to run away. Sometimes yes is the best direction. Fear is the opposite of what you want to live, so if saying yes to something scares, it might also ignite something within you. Try, do, [in healthy doses and circumstances] those things that challenge and bring great change.

6. TAKE CARE OF YOUR HEALTH.  Your body is a connection between heaven and earth. You will not get very far in life with passions or pursuits of any kind, if your body is not well enough to get you there. Eat from the earth. Exercise because Movement is Medicine. What is the best medicine for YOU?? Whatever it is you enJOY doing. Just breathe. Get Great sleep . Quiet your mind . Take in the Natural Sunlight–get outside as much as possible .  Constantly read and learn–this challenges different parts of your brain that enhances comprehension, language, and makes you an overall better writer and speaker . Relax & rest . LOL Laughter helps relieve stress, eleviate tension in the body, reduces pain by creating your own feel good endorphins (happy chemicals), brings about connections with people, makes you happy . Let go of negativity & energy drains . Have personal boundaries in place . Be aware of the energy you carry . Let go of anger (remember 90 sec rule) . Surround yourself wth feel good people–Does this person recharge or drain me? Alone time . Compassion & Service . Prayer . Listen to uplifting music . Practice being exquisitely present . Get grateful . Live from a place of love and compassion .

7. LIFE IS ABOUT LEARNING. Always walk through life as if you have something new to learn, and you will. -Vernon Howard Money, people, opportunities, challenges, life lessons…will come and go within your life. Learn from it all–the hardships, the relationships, the lack, the influences, the ups, the downs…will all be lessons to learn something. IF you look at it like you can take something from any situation you are in then strangers can teach you about joy, new friendships can give you new perspectives on life, stories can enlighten and bring clarity, heartache can teach you to be softer or a little kinder with those you love. Life can lift or lessen your grip on happiness.  Always be seeking to be lifted by everything you learn and turn it into a win for your life. Every lesson can make or break you—it is a choice you make in all you do.

8. LIFE IS A GREATER EDUCATION. There is no end to education. It is not that you read a book, pass an exam, and finish with education. The whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning.  -Jiddu Krishnamurti  Life is the greatest adventure. Learning will not end in school, it is lived from the depths of deep emotion, from the feelings that become aroused from authentic relationships, it is the seasons of challenge and change that bring us to our knees and cause us to cry out in a moment of desperate need. Life has its twists and turns, the page turners, the highlight reels, the heartwrenching, soul sucking moments that bring about a greater faith or need to humbly give it to God. Life is the ultimate ride and hopefully we are aware and ready to live it to the fullest and breathe in all its goodness with the hope of living higher, better, more brilliantly in the undending gift of life’s possibilities. 

9. I Live by the ABC’s ADVENTUROUS. BRAVE. CREATIVE -Walter Mitty 

Jobs fill your pockets, but adventures fill your soul.  -Jaime Lyn 

Everybody has a creative potential and from the moment you express this creative potential, you can start changing the world. -Paulo Coelho  

The biggest adventure you can ever take is to live the life of your dreams.  -Oprah  

The goal is to die with memories, not just dreams.  -anonymous

A man practices the art of adventure when he breaks the chain or routine and renews his life through reading new books, traveling to new places, making new friends, taking up new hobbies, and adopting new viewpoints. -Wilfred Peterson

10. LIVE IN LOVE Live for love. Without love, you don’t live. -unknown. It IS either from a place of love or it isn’t. PERIOD. The energy you carry. The words you share. The conversations. The actions. The very essence of your life is in every little thought you begin to believe, every person you surround yourself with, the things you say to yourself and others. Is it positive or negative? Is it fear or LOVE? there is no in-between. You are living in love or not.

11. SEEK YOURSELF  The greatest discovery in life is self-discovery. Until you find yourself, you will always be someone else. Become yourself. – Myles Munroe    Finding yourself will give you a better understanding of what drives your life and gives you better understanding of your purpose. Identify your passions, interests, strengths and weaknesses. Look at your skills and what you are naturally good at .  Always try new things and constantly push your personal limits .  Ask empowering questions .  Ask yourself what is your ideal you or lifestyle you desire . What goals can you come up with to help push you in the direction of your dreams? Accomplishing goals will help your self-esteem grow and you will build a better belief in who you are and what you are doing .  A better understanding of yourself will also help build healthier, personal relationships .  Always create more dreams and ambitions for your life–places you want to see, things you want to try, challenges you want to take on, etc. . 

12. FOLLOW THE GOOD  All good things are wild and free. – Henry David Thoreau    Nature has so many good things to offer. The animals, the plants, the islands, the mountains, the oceans, the reefs, the capes—nature’s beauty holds secret keys to a deeper part of your soul. When you take the time to be still, to walk, to be, to find awe and wonder in all the natural spaces, then you will find some of the richest gifts for your life. Follow the good.

13. SEE DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVES.  Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by. – Robert Frost     Live, move around, try new things, see new places. So many people will just stay stagnet, unmovable in life. They play it safe and never venture to new horizons to explore the greater landscapes within their hearts and mind. They visit distant lands, but short trips dont give the overall experience that life has to offer. Reach for places and spaces that help you grow, see new perspectives, different paths that are not taken by others. There is so much to learn from adventure, risking big life moves, talking to strangers, reading a variety of books, trying & learning everything, listening to podcasts that help you feel and see new perspectives, living experiences, being open to new ideas and fascinations, finding and seeking wonder in all you do. Its the spices of life.

14. FIND HAPPY  I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery – air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, ‘This is what it is to be happy.’– Sylvia Plath     It is the little things that make life worth living. It is the waterfalls you hike to, the walks in wildflowers, the memories you make with those you love while kayaking a lake or enjoying a sleigh ride. Let life guide you to those things that bring you genuine happiness. 

15. FEEL ALIVE   Go where you feel most alive. – Unknown   Dads “Doodle Walks” make him feel most alive. haha     Kate feels most alive at the ocean.  Heather feels most alive in the awe of nature [sunsets, big clouds, sunrays, ocean waves, big trees, star-filled skies–so many beautiful moments that make me feel a deeper connection to God] Find those places, paths, ocean walks, prayer rocks, visual awakenings, stunning sites that seem to awaken a deeper part of who you are. Go there often. Always find a special place that you can get quiet, to pray, to find peace, to go deeper. In these spaces you will feel most alive and connected in all you do.

16. DONT LET LIFE GET AWAY  We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.– Anonymous    Time goes by so quickly and the sooner you can find those important things—the important places, the spaces that bring calm, the spaces within your own mind that need guidance to find peace, the little things that become big things. Don’t let the important things escape you. Seek to find those things that bring meaning into your life. Seek to surround yourself with beauty, positive energy, loving relationships, self love and compassion, deep connections. Life slips by unless we can find the best grip to those things that matter most to us. Hold tight to them with all your heart.

17. ACCEPT YOURSELF  Accept yourself as you are right now; an imperfect, changing, growing and worthy person. -DW Nourish yourself with positive self-talk–no negatives. What you say to yourself really does matter. Be your own best friend because you have to live with who you are for your entire life . Seek out your personal weaknesses and begin to appreciate them for the opportunities of growth they offer [embrace them] . Dont be afraid to do things alone to know and understand yourself even better, which will help your self-esteem . Take on the hard challenges, tough days, and moments of struggle as they come and know they will not be around forever . Always laugh at yourself, the choices you make, the mis-steps, the wardrobes, the styles, the experiences, the life lessons you learned and know it was all part of the journey to get you to where you are today. Just fully embrace and accept you–all of you.

18. DONT BE AFRAID OF SELF-REFLECTION  Time spent in self-reflection is never wasted–it is an intimate date with yourself.  -Paul Wong     Throughout your life it is a good idea to take time to self-reflect and always ask yourself how you can become better. Take time to truly evaluate your personal thoughts, feelings, desires, actions, goals, emotions, motives, interactions in relationships, etc. Ask yourself deeper questions like, “What makes me happy?” “What lights me up or drains me?” “What makes me feel good about myself?” “What am I graterful for in my life?” “When do I feel on purpose?””What can I do to have a positive outlook on my life?” “What am I afraid of?” “What motivates me?” ““What do I value most?” ”What is a favorite quote or motto I strive to live by?” “What do I need to work on?”…

I was listening to a podcast & the guy being interviewed talked about how he asks his wife, “What character trait is my worst? What do I need to work on?” Those who know you best can quickly help you identify areas that you may need to work on or refocus your attention to become better. We are humans, creatures of habit and often fall victim to routine. We need to always be seeking those areas where we become stagnet, immovable and need retooling and direction. We need to take the time to self-reflect to see our personal necessities of improvement. If we dont seek to become better–how do we?

19.  ALWAYS GETTING GRATEFUL I love this thought, “What if you woke up today with only the things that you thanked God for yesterday?” Think about that.  It makes you reflect on those things, the littlest things that you take for granted, that you might miss in a prayer, right? Would you think of warm showers, being able to walk a beach, being able to see someone smile, cuddle with your puppies, eat and savor a delicious handful of grapes, running water in your toilet, sunshine, towering trees that give shade, loving words whispered in your ear, a fireplace to keep you warm, hearing podcasts that inspire, being able to read words in a book, etc. Gratitude helps you pause and genuinely notice the things that truly matter in your life. When you get grateful, you are quietly saying thank you and that is enough.

20. EXPECTING MAGIC DAILY Believe in your heart that you’re meant to live a life full of passion, purpose, magic and miracles. -Roy T Bennett Expecting magic to happen daily.   Hope of finding magic daily is a wonderful way to strive to live. Maybe it is a new found relationship and the excitement that brings. Maybe its noticing the symmetrical details of a fern on a walk outside. Maybe its being in awe of big waves crashing or the mist off the ocean surf. When you begin to seek and notice those things that create wonder within your life, then life becomes something even more to look forward to.  The energy that accompanies a search for surprise is undeniable and with that comes the secrets and magic that life holds.

Hope you can find something in this wisdom. Biggest takeaways: You are a one-of-a-kind, invest and be with those people that matter most, follow those things that energize and challenge you to be your best, embrace what life has to offer, live love in all you do, jump at the chance to discover your greatest asset–YOU, follow those things that lead you to nature, change your perspective, soak in the little things that make you happy and full of life’s best, nourish your self with love, always grow, get grateful and expect magic in all you do. Life is an ultimate adventure. enJOY it fully.

Peace. Love and Light. -H xoxo

Embrace the JOYage

Embrace the voyage…Embrace the Journey…I say, Embrace the JOY in every day journeys! Right!? EMBRACE THE JOYAGE!

It has taken me a lifetime to get to a place and truly understand the true meaning of creating moments of JOY. Hoping to bring about more moments than not of this incredible ingredient life gives and takes. JOY.

JOY: A feeling of great pleasure and happiness. OR gladness not based on circumstance [1 Peter 1:8-9] OR darkness dispelled. The light of everlasting life lit up in the soul. OR the emotion evoked by well-being, success or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires.

EMBRACE ALL the JOY you can get.

Not everyone feels or enJOYs JOY. It is a gift; a desired outcome on the journey of life. We do the daily to do’s in order of hoping we can create the correct dosages or amounts of work, study, conversations, smiles, interactions that will give us something…anything… but hopeful it will have JOY sprinkled in.

Who doesn’t want or hope for pure JOY. There is enough other stuff out there that can be taken in certain supply hoping for some inkling of our desired JOY.

I want the pure, unaltered version. I want the stuff that cannot be diluted or distilled to a various version. I don’t want to be hyped up on illusion. I want real JOY.

I seek it daily. I try too [soo] hard to make each day a little better. I learn new things. I work on my mental toughness. I pray. I get grateful. I try not to be a hater to my physical body. I get outside every day. I kiss. I laugh. I work to become a little better each day.

BUT, even then. JOY can be illusive. It can send someone else in to steal your joy or high-jack your higher place of personal wellness.

Yesterday, well, I should say, on many visiting weekends, my daughter visits from college and we can have a wonderful time. But, also a time of turmoil, struggle, mind bombs of my JOY. She throws grenades that hurt with her eye rolls and her comments that tear down my way of living. She expresses how all I talk about are life lessons, getting grateful, doing better, spreading love….etc. I am taken back every time that I get turned into a battle of justifying gratitude or good life lessons, sharing, etc. I am slapped in the face for good?? What is that?? That is a legitimate hi-jacking of good things that can lead to joy. Who does that?? My daughter?? What??

Well, to say the least, it brings about a reflection of deeper needs. I have always believed that your life is an expression of your living. You are an example to those you love and live with. So, how does this happen??

What happened to her JOY?? How did it get so lost??

My heart soo deeply just wants her happy, finding joy around every corner, living her best life, doing things that lead her to her hearts happiness. Her college experience has been a tough journey, but she tries soo hard every day. It is like she is in a daily battle of wills. Her mental toughness is challenged to the core and her strength seems to weaken with her internal compass teetering in insecurities. She is a beautiful girl who has always been so sure of who she is, where she is going, what she wants for her life, her enthusiasm, her charm, her strength, her positive nature…has slowly been eroding since entering college. She works hard to connect with others and has lots of connections, but no one reciprocates the love and energy she puts out. It has been a tough voyage.

So, what can I do?? How do I help as a mother? How do we help one another in this journey to embrace the JOYage??

Let us jump in to find answers and ideas to help one find and EMBRACE the JOYAGE…

MAKE THE MOST OUT OF IT According to an INC article The secret of being happy is accepting where you are in life and making the most out of everyday. It doesn’t matter how old we are, what we’ve done, or how much money we have. Our journey is a personal one-full of lessons and reasons to be happy. When we stop comparing ourselves to others and realize how full our lives are, we can appreciate our individual value.

Say THANK YOU. I always have loved Wayne Dyer and I remember him always mentioning how every morning when he would get out of bed, he would touch the floor with his feet and say, “Thank you.” Another one of my favorite’s to live by…“If the only prayer you say is thank you, it will be enough.”

GRATITUDE: Find anything you are and can be grateful for. Gratitude has been a staple in our home because I believe in its power to help in all you do. It can change thought patterns from negative to positive, build happiness, grow good things, etc. I have often found myself talking to my daughter about focusing on those things that she can be grateful for on her college campus. One of her greatest wins—being grateful for a spin class to help ease stress. When she struggles to find things—in the end, it may be some of the hardest and most challenging things that bring us to our knees and make us stronger. The funny thing—she has always hated exercise, but finding something she can find JOY in…priceless. Thanks spin classes 😉

Another personal story: moving to Oregon has taken some time to get use to the surprises in the weather here. It can be sunny, then raining, then hailing, all within a half hour. It can have crazy winds, intense down pours, so when the sun comes out, I feel every sense of my being to run to the sunshine. I have never been so grateful for the sun in the dark, rainy winters. BUT, I also reflect on the beautiful rain and the incredible rainbows that constantly grace the wet landscapes. You cannot have the rainbows without the rain. To me that is the sincerest example of gratitude. No matter what, there is always something beautiful that comes. You can always find the beauty in anything if you truly seek to find it. Finding gratitude throughout your life will uncover hidden gifts and treasures you may not even see.

DISCOVER. I do believe variety is the spice of life, so I am always seeking new landscapes, new trails to hike, new desserts to try, new things to learn, new books to read, new beaches to walk…seek and find things that are new to your senses. I guarantee that even if you have lived in the same neighborhood for years that there are new places to find, paths to take, shops to wander, waterfalls to see, classes to take, etc. Find something new to light up your JOY.

TRY SOMETHING NEW. Walking a college campus is a fun way to be hit in the face with all types of things to try. There seems to be tack boards full of upcoming activities for people to join—cooking classes, line dancing, cactus potting, art, martial arts, concerts…the lists go on and on. Trying new things is a great way to get you outside of yourself, connecting with others and learning something new in the process.

I am a big believer in community education. I usually try to challenge myself to take some type of class where I will learn something. This winter I have been taking an Irish group dance class. Because maybe one day, I will be in Ireland and will walk into a pub and know what a Ceili dance is. haha. Smile. Smile. and join in. There are always so many things you can learn. Take a chance. Learn something new. Challenge and grow.

FIND LITTLE JOYS NOW: Find those little things within your life that bring you joy now. DONT postpone your life with the never-ending list of, ‘When I make $$ then…” or “When I finally move to…my life will be better” or “Maybe when I find the love of my life…” you need to work on being presently JOY-filled. You need to seek out those little things in your life that bring you little, even tiny bits of joy now. Maybe it is a favorite sweatshirt you enJOY wearing or a special cafe drink that brings a smile to your face or a friend who always makes you laugh or watering your plants or playing with your dog. Maybe its a sunset walk or a starlight wish. Maybe it is playing an instrument or painting your nails. Everyone has those little things that bring little joys. Seek and find those daily.

STEP BY STEP: Think of a stream with big rocks that are stepping stones to the other side. Be gentle with your journey. There will be mis-steps where you may fall in or you may over-jump in excitement, you may slip when you are unsure, or stand tall with assurance, etc. The journey will have its ups and downs, surprise endings, happy wins, wild twists and turns, but with each forward step you are moving in a good direction. Learn from each happening, whether it is hard or happy, ultimately your life is what you will make out of it. Look at each stumble as a stepping stone towards greatness. Learn from everything you grow through. Begin to trust yourself, your personal footing and the directions you desire to go. It is ultimately your life and your journey. Learn to embrace the JOYS in all you do.

FAITH OVER FEAR WITHIN YOURSELF: Faith over fear is another staple reminder in our home. We have had many experiences that have been personal testaments to the truth of this statement. You must have faith over fear in all you do. BUT, even so within yourself. You must have a greater faith in who you are, the directions you are going, the work you are doing, your personal belief and will that you are incredible and will overcome the fears that try to creep in. We all have insecurities, but seeking to instill a greater mental faith will help deter the fears that will try to push us to our knees. We must always remember one of my favorite quotes: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” Have faith in that! Shine bright and have the faith to do so..for fear cannot live in the freedom of a soul on fire.

GET INTO NATURE: I have a very strong belief in the power of nature and the great benefits it gives. Nature is an untapped resource of rich goodness. We have not even touched the enormous benefits that it holds. We know it is good to get into nature, but “There is mounting evidence, from dozens and dozens of researchers, that nature has benefits for both physical and psychological human well­being,” says Lisa Nisbet, PhD, a psychologist at Trent University in Ontario, Canada, who studies connectedness to nature. “You can boost your mood just by walking in nature, even in urban nature. And the sense of connection you have with the natural world seems to contribute to happiness even when you’re not physically immersed in nature.”-apa. and according to a Yale article Nature is not only nice to have, but it’s a have-to-have for physical health and cognitive functioning.

Get outside and let the sunshine feed your body with nutrient vitamins. I will often be out in 50 degree weather along the coast in a tank top, while everyone else is wearing down parka’s—why? Because I smile at the sunshine and say…bring it! I enJOY feeling the suns rays nourish my everything–body and soul. Get out in nature: take your dogs on a walk, pick berries, hunt for mushrooms, take in sunsets, breathe in the freshest air, walk barefoot, touch the trees, smell the flowers, take in every splendor possible. Seek nature when you look out a window or when you are on a lunch break. Take the long way around a building before a meeting. Have a luncheon outside. Bring a plant(s) to work. Even having a picture of nature will bring you its benefits. Nature gives in all things. Take every moment possible to be in it…near it…basking in it.

LAUGHTER: Oh, the untapped goodness of a good, hearty, belly laugh!! It can take a tense situation and bring a smile. It can make a heart feel so much better. It takes away the edge of stress to leave you gasping in smiles. There is a light and a physical lightness it brings to any situation. So, have a go-to’s of funny comedies, series and movies you enJOY watching. Get together often with people who make you laugh out loud. Always be on the lookout for comedians who you appreciate, jokes you can share, anything that makes your heart sing in comedic bliss. According to the MayoClinic, “A good sense of humor can’t cure all ailments, but data is mounting about the positive things laughter can do. A good laugh has great short-term effects. When you start to laugh, it doesn’t just lighten your load mentally, it actually induces physical changes in your body.

Laughter can:

  • Stimulate many organs. Laughter enhances your intake of oxygen-rich air, stimulates your heart, lungs and muscles, and increases the endorphins that are released by your brain.
  • Activate and relieve your stress response. A rollicking laugh fires up and then cools down your stress response, and it can increase and then decrease your heart rate and blood pressure. The result? A good, relaxed feeling.
  • Soothe tension. Laughter can also stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation, both of which can help reduce some of the physical symptoms of stress.

Laughter isn’t just a quick pick-me-up, though. It’s also good for you over the long term. Laughter may:

  • Improve your immune system. Negative thoughts manifest into chemical reactions that can affect your body by bringing more stress into your system and decreasing your immunity. By contrast, positive thoughts can actually release neuropeptides that help fight stress and potentially more-serious illnesses.
  • Relieve pain. Laughter may ease pain by causing the body to produce its own natural painkillers.
  • Increase personal satisfaction. Laughter can also make it easier to cope with difficult situations. It also helps you connect with other people.
  • Improve your mood. Many people experience depression, sometimes due to chronic illnesses. Laughter can help lessen your stress, depression and anxiety and may make you feel happier. It can also improve your self-esteem.

ENJOY THOSE AROUND YOU: People will come and go in your life, so it is the gifts and lessons that you can learn and take away from the encounters that happen daily. I fondly remember a training I was attending & I had one of the educators call me out and embarrass me in front of the group. I calmly excused myself and broke down in tears in a nearby bathroom. One of the bathroom attendants noticed me crying and approached me. She did not understand English, but did her best to comfort me with a sincere hug. That was all I needed, a complete stranger to connect with me on a deeper level and show me the genuine compassion from another in my time of need. We are all here for one another—in one way or another. If we take the time to treasure those glimpses of another’s heart, a smile, a kind word, a compliment, a gesture…the world would be a better place.

Another personal story: my husband was recently helping with the college level, World Olympic Games in Lake Placid, New York. There were numerous winter, athletic teams from around the world. Many did not speak English, but that did not stop my husband from making genuine connections. By the end of the two week period my husband made many friends, but a special friendship with team Spain. Even though they did not speak English they had a great respect and appreciation for my husband. At the end of the events they gave my husband one of their team jackets & made him an honorary team member. It was such a kind gesture & one that will stay with my husband forever. The genuine gifts of connection when you sincerely enJOY those around you. People FEEL your love by how you treat them. Love and respect above all.

Seek JOY. Dance with life’s gifts. Find yourself along the journey. embrace the JOYage. Life is short. Make it memorable.

Peace. Love and Light to you. -H