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Posts from the ‘Encouragement’ Category

Eyes on the Road

“Still round the corner there may wait, A new road or a secret gate.” – J. R. R. Tolkien

“Still round the corner there may wait, A new road or a secret gate.” – J. R. R. Tolkien

“And now we welcome the new year. Full of things that have never been.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

Glance only but for a moment in the rearview mirror;
Keep your eyes on the road ahead;
Holding the wheel;
Taking in the scenery;
Open to possibility, the promise of things that have never been.
New trails, some detours, some culdesacs.
Mountains, valleys, curves and flat.
Make your way out, around, through.
Eyes on the road.
Keep going, present in the journey, in this day.

“Live your questions now, and perhaps even without knowing it, you will live along some distant day into your answers.” – Rainer Maria Rilke


"Nature always wears the colors of the spirit." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Nature always wears the colors of the spirit.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“The most authentic thing about us is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love and to be greater than our suffering.” – Ben Okri

You are greater than circumstances and struggles.

“The future enters into us, in order to transform itself in us, long before it happens.” – Rainer Maria Rilke



“What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.”
—T.S. Eliot

“Not in his goals but in his transitions man is great.”  —Ralph Waldo Emerson

In our own struggles, we not only gain insight with time and distance, empathy can be fruit we bear as well. When we allow vulnerability and share struggles together, we create connectedness and “us”ness rather than aloneness.

In conversations recently, I’ve referenced a few anchor points that have held me in and through difficulty. In Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’ seminal book On Grief and Grieving, she frames the five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. She never presented the stages as linear but more circular, completed in due time with acceptance. These stages are not only relevant in final death but the many deaths and transitions we experience in life. Two years of a pandemic have presented a lot of deaths to the collective whole of humanity. In 2020, co-author of On Grief and Grieving David Kessler wrote a new book adding the sixth stage of grief – meaning. When we know meaning is the destination, we can tolerate and keep moving through the rough parts of the journey.

The next reference that has fostered a deeper understanding and foundation of assurance is Bridges Transition Model identifying the three stages of transition – ending what currently is, the neutral zone and the new beginning.

“The essence of life takes place in the neutral zone phase of transition. It is in that interim spaciousness that all possibilities, creativity and innovative ideas can come to life and flourish.” – Susan Bridges

The winters of life serve their purpose which we rarely see or understand in real time. Be assured – spring never skips its turn. Sharing that assurance with others. Cast light, hope and connection.

The Whole Damn Sky

“Excuse me while I kiss the sky.” – Jimi Hendrix

When you it all feels small, look up at the sky.
When it all feels too big, look at the petals of a flower.
Big and small, surface and deep, and mostly everything in between.
Be a part, immersed, buoyed, detached, attached and aware of it all.
No need to label or change each moment, move through it and simple be present.
The whole damn sky.

Permission to feel it all by Kate Bowler

“I feel things big. And for the longest time, I felt so much shame because of it. I need reminders that my emotions are not bad or good. They’re just information.

You feel angry because this is unjust. You feel sad because this is awful. You feel tired because this is exhausting.

Your emotions are not wrong or bad or lying to you or the full truth. They’re giving you a bit of data that you shouldn’t ignore. We love and lose and fall and get back up and fail and try again.

This is what it means to be human, to feel the pain, the grief, the stress, the risk, the fear, the heartbreak. So you, beautiful creature, you here is your permission slip to feel it all, to feel the joy and delight and excitement and the sorrow and fear and despair.

All the yellows and pinks and violets and grays, because you are the whole damn sky.”

The In Between

“We ought to do good to others as simply as a horse runs, or a bee makes honey, or a vine bears grapes season after season without thinking of the grapes it has borne.” – Marcus Aurelius

“Nothing great is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig. I answer you that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen.” – Epictetus

Allow time to do its work.
Slowly but surely and then suddenly.
Patience, ease and acceptance.
Struggle, release, take hold.
A process, a cycle, a completion.
In the waiting, rest in gratitude, do good, keep going.
Enjoy the in between, the space between seed and fruit.
Blossom to fruition.
Full circle.

Walls to Windows

“You are on a soulful path that asks you to step into the greatest version of yourself. It is a sacred gift to shine your brightest light, not just in your moments of glory, but each day.” – Debbie Ford

“There is a vastness that quiets the soul. But sometimes we are so squarely in the midst of life’s forces that we can’t see what we’re a part of.” – Mark Nepo

May your walls become windows.
Inviting the light in, exposing your soul, broadening your view.
See the expanse of the universe and your place in the vastness woven in this very day.
Beyond circumstances, distractions and swirling thoughts into the rich soil of life.
Let the light in, open the windows, plant seeds, harvest joy.
Someday is today.
Fully participate in it.
Walls to windows.


“Be like the bird who, pausing in her flight awhile on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her, and yet sings, knowing she hath wings.” – Victor Hugo

“This is how Heaven works. They’re practical. We are always looking for rays of light. For lightning bolts or burning bushes. But God is a worker, like us. He made the world — He didn’t hire poor Indios to build it for him! God has worker’s hands. Just remember — angels carry no harps. Angels carry hammers.”― Luis Alberto Urrea, The Hummingbird’s Daughter

Discover your wings
Allow the path to unfold, walk softly into the unknown
Witness God’s handiwork in your life, in this day, all around and within
A slight shift, a different angle, new eyes
Gratitude, grace and generosity
Enjoy the journey, carry a hammer, take flight.

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” – Marcel Proust

Garden Tending

“Your minds may now be likened to a garden, which will, if neglected, yield only weeds and thistles; but, if cultivated, will produce the most beautiful flowers, and the most delicious fruits.” – Dorothea Dix

“We become what we behold. We shape our tools and then our tools shape us.” – Marshall McLuhan

What to weed out, what to water
Choose your tending well
Be aware of what you behold
Time provides the necessary distance needed to gain perspective
Struggle gives way to calm
Ease and acceptance
Healing and restoration
Lay down the nonessential
Shape and be shaped
Malleable and permeable
Tend your garden

“A garden requires patient labor and attention. Plants do not grow merely to satisfy ambitions or to fulfill good intentions. They thrive because someone expended effort on them.” – Liberty Hyde Bailey

Soul Music

“The mountains are calling and I must go.”- John Muir

“When we try to protect ourselves from the inevitability of change, we are not listening to the soul. We are listening to our fear of life and death, our lack of faith, our smaller ego’s will to prevail. To listen to your soul is to stop fighting with life–to stop fighting when things fall apart; when they don’t go our away, when we get sick, when we are betrayed or mistreated or misunderstood. To listen to the soul is to slow down, to feel deeply, to see ourselves clearly, to surrender to discomfort and uncertainty and to wait.”― Elizabeth Lesser

May you find:
Joy in waiting
Peace in struggles
Faith in the desert
Hope when weary
Strength to keep going
Kindness for self and others

Let go of control
Allow your soul to drive
Your spirit to sore
Your heart to embrace
Soul music – listen

“It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves.” – Edmund Hillary


“It is the hopeful, buoyant, cheerful attitude of mind that wins. Optimism is a success builder; pessimism an achievement killer.” – Orison Swett Marden

“Namaste means that my soul acknowledges yours –
not just your light, your wisdom, your goodness,
but also your darkness, your suffering, your imperfections.
It is a recognition and acceptance of the inexplicable
divine absurdity, the miraculous woven into the ordinary,
light and darkness intimately entwined in magical, messy humanity.
It means that I honor all that you are with all that I am.
So, namaste, my fellow travelers.
I’m so glad we’re on this trek through the universe together.” ― L.R. Knost

May you harness your thoughts to find the magic in simple moments
The depth of your soul
The expanse of your heart
The power of your intentions and attention
The energy of gratitude.

“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts: therefore, guard accordingly, and take care that you entertain no notions unsuitable to virtue and reasonable nature.” – Marcus Aurelius

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