It’s NOT Always about You…

A few years ago, I got a protective hairstyle to guard against the Chicago winter and let my stylist talk me out of my plan and into longer hair. I immediately realized my error and went back the next day for a corrective cut. In response to a query from another customer, I explained that long hair did not fit my life style, which she interpreted as a knock against HER long weave.

It is human nature to interpret external data through our personal lens, but it was fascinating that a person I did not know would react to my decision about me as somehow reflecting on her. I immediately thought of the second of “The Four Agreement”s by Don Miguel Ruiz:

1. Be impeccable with your word.
2. Don’t take anything personally.
3. Don’t make assumptions.
4. Always do your best.

Inhale Perspective, Exhale Personal…
Inhale Global, Exhale Naval-gazing…
Inhale Universal, Exhale Individual…
Just Breathe…

#ReflectionsWithRenita

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Knowledge

Each of us has different gifts and talents…things that we’re naturally good at that can be used to serve our purpose. To attract those who might offer a perspective that could be beneficial to our growth and achievement of our purpose, we have to be open to the notion that there some things we do not know, some tasks we’re not good at and some people with legitimate and different perspectives.

Because…“If everyone is thinking alike, then no one is thinking.” ~ Benjamin Franklin

Inhale Difference, Exhale Conformity…
Inhale Diversity, Exhale Uniformity…
Inhale Disagreement, Exhale Homogeneity…
Just Breathe…

#ReflectionsWithRenita

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Bonds

We sometimes struggle trying to force family connections not of our creation fit some expectation of what we think they should be, ignoring the reality of what they are. And the reality is, the bonds that bind us together are often blood but could be shared backgrounds or might be based on similar interests and experience.

If your tribe is your family, that’s great. But if your crew is created with those who have chosen to co-journey with you, that is grace.

Friendship isn’t about who you’ve known the longest, it’s about who walked in to your life, said “I’m here for you,” and PROVED it.” Author Unknown

Inhale Bonds, Exhale Shoulds…
Inhale Bonds, Exhale Have-tos…
Inhale Bonds, Exhale Musts…
Just Breathe…

#ReflectionsWithRenita

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Discipline

Do or do not, there is no try.” ~ Yoda, Star WarsThe Empire Strikes Back

Most people only decide to make a lifestyle change when some aspect of their life becomes too painful. Once the pain subsides, they often revert to the original behavior, only to experience the pain again, sometimes even more severely than before.

Making a change that sticks requires the belief that you can do it, the commitment to your choice and the daily discipline to do what you’ve committed to.

The road to life is a disciplined life; ignore correction and you’re lost for good.” ~ Proverbs 10:17 The Message

Inhale Resolve, Exhale Regret…
Inhale Tenacity, Exhale Regret…
Inhale Resilience, Exhale Regret…
Just Breathe…

#ReflectionsWithRenita

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Growth

“Are your painful experiences stumbling blocks or stepping stones?” ~ Bruce D. Schneider

One of the forever lessons I learned from my Air Force career is the ability to see the lesson in every experience. When I had great leaders, I took notes and unapologetically copied any behaviors that fit my leadership style. When I had not so great leaders, I learned some things NOT to do and how to exorcise those behaviors in my leadership.

When I had a positive leadership experience, I tried to understand what went right and build on it. When I had a negative leadership experience, I took the lesson and course corrected.

My goal was to never be complacent, never stop learning and never stop growing.

Refuse good advice and watch your plans fail; take good counsel and watch them succeed.” ~ Proverbs 15:22, The Message

Inhale Growth, Exhale Stagnation…
Inhale Renewal, Exhale Regression…
Inhale Expansion, Exhale Complacence…
Just Breathe…

#JustBreathe
#Development

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Intention

I start any workshop I do by asking the participants to think of their intention for our time together. I remind them we are co-creating the experience we’re about to have…and if they want, expect and intend for our experience to be great, it probably will be.

Because it doesn’t matter how flawlessly my words flow, how important the topic or how we came to be in the same space, what they take from the workshop is as a much a function of their preparedness as mine.

“But the seed in the good earth—these are the good-hearts who seize the Word and hold on no matter what, sticking with it until there’s a harvest.” Luke 8: 15, The Message

Inhale Intention, Exhale Inattention…
Inhale Consciousness, Exhale Carelessness…
Inhale Deliberation, Exhale Disregard…
Just Breathe…

#ReflectionsWithRenita

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Essential Love

This week I’m trying to focus on the love….

Love is the essential existential fact. It is our ultimate reality and our purpose on earth. To be consciously aware of it, to experience love in ourselves and others, is the meaning of life.” ~ Marianne Williamson, A Return to Love.

Inhale Love, Exhale Fear…
Inhale Life, Exhale Fear…
Inhale God, Exhale Fear…
Just Breathe…

#ReflectionsWithRenita

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Works

Now is not the time to grow weary, get distracted, become cynical, or loose hope. Now is the time to put into action that which you have been purposed to do….

“…You can no more show me your works apart from your faith than I can show you my faith apart from my works. Faith and works, works and faith, fit together hand in glove.” James 2: 18 The Message.

Inhale Conviction, Exhale Fear…
Inhale Confidence, Exhale Distress…
Inhale Certainty, Exhale Insecurity…
Just Breathe…

#JustBreathe

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Ignite Purpose

Our dreams can ignite a passion for a cause that reveals our purpose. We all have a purpose…our reason for being here. When we don’t fulfill our purpose, things come undone or don’t get done.

Our purpose is sometimes revealed in an unexpected way when we experience something personally or something happens to someone close to us and we feel compelled to act. Candy Lightner founded Mothers Against Drunk Driving after a drunk driver who had a history of arrests for intoxication hit and killed her daughter.

misty4secondpositionOr sometimes we’re exposed to something for the very first time and we don’t understand how we’re going to live with out this in our lives. Think Misty Copeland who wasn’t introduced to ballet until the relatively late age of 13.

Every now and then our innate and obvious passions and talents are nurtured and developed from the beginning of our lives…we call those people prodigies. Pablo Picasso’s passion and talent for drawing were evident, encouraged and expanded from an early age by his art instructor father.

Unfortunately, not everyone gets that kind of early, sustained support, but that doesn’t mean we can’t act on our desires and use our talents to fulfill our purpose as soon as we know what it is. It doesn’t matter how or even when we get to our purpose. It only matters that when the discovery is made, we strive to live in and on purpose.

Our light is revealed as we strike our gift against the needs of the world…” ~ Mark Nepo

Inhale Dreams, Exhale Delusion…
Inhale Discovery, Exhale Discouragement…
Inhale Development, Exhale Abandonment…
Just Breathe…

#ReflectionsWithRenita

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