Saturday, October 24, 2009

Please now visit my new blog postings on my websites:

And visit:

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Kim's Guest Blog Posting on www.AdHustler.com


Please visit Ad Hustler's site to see my Guest Blog:
http://www.adhustler.com/big-selfless-simple/

Monday, September 14, 2009

Kim's Top Picks #1 of One: Best Hair Stylist & Makeup Artist: New York's Own Lydia Fierro


This is the first in a series I will be doing on my Top Picks.

I've been going to Lydia for over 7 years now. For me the most impressive thing about her is that she really "gets" what I want when I'm there. I believe that her listening skills are the key to her success as a stylist. Lydia's abilities as a colorist are extraordinary. Her attention to detail is unparalleled. She is a true artist and a perfectionist. Her eye is a sharp as it can be - she sees every hair on your head and never settles until she is sure everything is as it should be.

I've asked Lydia to allow me to post her professional bio, which is below. If you are interested in getting in touch with Lydia please email her at Lydia511@mac.com or call her directly at 917-363-9618.

Lydia Fierro has been a hair stylist since 1990 and in New York City for 13 years. She has been trained by some of New York’s hairstylists including Mark Garrison, Nick Arrojo, and Rodney Cutler. Always staying on top of the latest trends she attends the Loreal academy for advanced color classes and the Tony and Guy Academy for both cut and color classes.

She currently works at on Madison Ave on the Upper East Side at the Yossi Hair Salon. There she attends to a loyal clientele where she cuts, colors and styles hair. No matter how long you have been a client of Lydia’s she will always takes the time for a full consultation.

She encourages her clients to bring picture of styles they like and carefully listens to their suggestions and concerns. When not in the salon she is most likely working on TV shows like NBC’s The Today Show, TLC’s One Week to Save Your Marriage. She has also done commercials such as, Stride Gum, Bank of America photo shoots for magazines like Parent and Child, Quince. She also works on live events like New York Times, Arts and Leisure. She has styled celebrities such as Martin Short and Larry David.

Creating up-styles and glamorous evening hair is one of Lydia’s favorite parts of her career. When not in the salon she can often be found at weddings and other special occasions.

Lydia welcomes new clients with an initial free consultation prior to booking that first appointment. From there your relationship will develop and you feel like you are visiting a friend.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Thermostat & The Hole

~This is my first posting as a guest blogger on AdHustler.com

A few years back I made a slew of cash in a very short amount of time. I was working at a hedge fund and I received a sign on bonus as well as two more generous ones over the year.

Having grown up with a mom who always struggled with money I remember feeling a little unusual about all the money I was making. Not that I didn’t love every minute of it; because I did. It was remarkable to not have to bring out a calculator every time the urge to purchase something came about. Yet I found it to be somewhat unfamiliar and even at times a little nerve-wracking grappling with the question, “How did this change in circumstances just like that – occur?!”

And I was also aware of my concern that it might all disappear – just like that. Other people who receive a lot of money at once sometimes have an opposite reaction they start to feel as though it will always continue and they will never run out. But I felt more of a kinship with the infamous stories of lottery winners that within a short time ran through their money. Why was that?! I sure as heck didn’t want to be one of them.

Being an affiliate marketer you might be experiencing some of these thoughts yourself. Shocked, excited, and or anxious and nervous that it won’t last so you are spending it like a little kid in a candy shop – scooping up all the candy you can carry home. Who can blame you? It’s new and it feels good to show off in front of your buddy what you have created for yourself. I’m all about celebrating yourself and your wins but as a life coach I’m here to make sure that you also keep earning the money and that you don’t go and blow it all at once on candy that will just get you sick of in a few days or months.

Back to the lottery winners who in a short amount of time go right back to an empty bank account. I now know that the reason this happens is that what is believed in our unconscious is what will determine our circumstance. There is a pre-set thermostat that lives inside all of us which is our self-image. If we want money and abundance to continue in our life – we need to examine the beliefs we have about it being in our life in the first place. We have to take a look at our self and see if we truly feel having it feels like it fits, is familiar and/or is what we have perceive as normal and if it doesn’t; than no matter how much external effort we exert – including will power - will ever be able to keep it from slipping through our hands. Eventually our pre-set thermostat will take us back to what it considers our “setting” unless we re-wire the setting on that thermostat. As a coach this is one of the first things that I ask people to take a look at, what are their limiting beliefs? Having those beliefs brought into the light has a remarkable ability to stop them dead in their tracks.

Additionally what is also interesting is that in spite of the money and any new found bling -we might find that we feel empty inside. You hear about it all the time someone buys a hot new car and has a fab new apartment and yet they still don’t feel good about themselves. So they keep numbing out either with shopping, food, drink, drugs and/or sex. They aren’t even enjoying any of those things –it is just this fruitless attempt to fill what feels like a hole inside. Again this is about our self image. As Maxwell Maltz, MD says, “Self image - it is the common denominator.” In the book, The New Psycho-Cybernetics he discusses that “To really live and find life satisfying you must have an adequate and realistic self-image that you can live with. You must find your self acceptable to you. You must have a wholesome self-esteem; a self that you can trust and believe in; a self that you are not ashamed to be and one that you can feel free to express creatively rather than hide or cover up.”

So if indeed you struggle with feeling inadequate or unacceptable realize you are in the majority. We all struggle against feelings of inadequacy but our peace of mind is closer that we realize. It will take some effort but not nearly as much as one would imagine. There are terrific books available to help you to get clarity; as well as personal development courses and even one on one coaching. All of them will on differently levels make you aware of your limiting beliefs.

If you feel you have identified with some of what this posting is addressing the first thing I want you to do is celebrate yourself and acknowledge how self aware you are and that you are indeed “awake.” It takes courage to admit it to yourself; now you need to take the next step. Whether it is buying a book taking a development course or hiring a coach; the key is to keep going. Don’t stop. You are more than half way there. Winston Churchill said it best; “If you find yourself going through hell, keep going.” It might get hot but you will have your thermostat permanently re-set where you want it for the rest of your life. And that is worth more than any bling I’ve ever seen.

Thanks again to Brandon Hoffman aka Ad Hustler for letting me be a guest blogger on www.adhustler.com. Brandon is the King of Affiliate Marketing - if you want to know more about affiliate marketing check out www.adhustler.com

Soft Soft Soft

Want him to be more of a man? Try being more of a woman.
~Coty Perfume Ad

I've had a few experiences recently that have troubled me. I've been witnessing a lot of women telling their men what to do. At parties, on the subway, and even in public on the street. And not in a "Hey this is what I need and what do you need from me, honey?" sort of way but in a "This is HOW you do it, if you want to do it RIGHT" sort of way. It's brutal. And I find it emasculating. It's as though these woman are their man's mother; not their partner.

Last week walking down the street I asked a couple who were pushing a carriage for directions to a restaurant. I happened to direct the question to the guy. He started to tell me how to get there, when his wife interrupted him to tell me the "better" way to go. I looked at her thinking; "Are you serious?" But she didn't notice. Then I looked at him and saw a look on his face of resignation and apathy. Clearly he had been through this before and wasn't surprised by her interruption.

Now I realize this isn't every woman out there. And I also know that there are men that do this very thing to their women. But I've been surprised at how many women seem to be doing this to their men. I believe this is due to what is known as the "Wonder Woman" syndrome. I first learned about this from author Laura Doyle years ago. She wrote an amazing book (which I featured in my first blog posting) called The Surrendered Wife.

Women are incredibly capable. We keep so many balls up in the air at once. We are always juggling and are so good at it, that sometimes we ride rough-shod over our man because we are so busy being busy and doing it all. We start to act as if it ALL depends on us. And sometimes it feels like it does. But in actuality, it doesn't. But living as though it does - we create a very lonely world to live in as well as a world where we do all the work.

When you think that your way is the right way - or the only way, who wants to come up to bat when it's guaranteed that their contribution will be shot down. Ask yourself - and be honest - is it possible that you are blocking the very contribution you seek? Have you pushed help away because it didn't show up in exactly the way you wanted it to show up?

How about compliments? Do you receive them? The last time your man offered you a gift did you gracefully receive it? Or tell him he couldn't afford it? When he offered to help you with a errand or task, did you tell them him e-x-a-c-t-l-y how he should do it? When he complimented your hair, dress or figure? Did you respond that it really wasn't all that? These are some examples of not receiving. Try stepping into receiving and gratitude. Take it all in -as it is given - and enjoy it without critiquing it or him. Don't control it - just let it arrive and softly land.

So what comes first the chicken or the egg? What if you are walking around with the belief "It all depends on me!" You know the saying about self-fufilling prophecies, don't you? Perhaps if you let it go and surrender - he will organically start to do what he needs to do and I wouldn't be surprised possibly even more.

Nobody likes to be bossed around. Everyone resists it. Nobody likes to be told how to live; not to mention how to clean the dishes. Stop trying to fix and make everything perfect around you. If your man won't do something then let it not get done. You don't have to fix it.

Let those socks sit in the living room. Let the chips fall where they may. Eventually it will need to get addressed and who says it has to be you? Do you really want to go down in the history books as the Town Crier of the family? You already know darn well that nagging doesn't make it happen.

If you let things go - here is what you will discover: More time for yourself. More baths. More relaxation. Less worry and stress. And more love. You will start to see change. It might not show up immediately but it will come. If you surrender; and let go it will come. Alliance is the opposite of dictatorship. Align with your man and reap the rewards. And if you find that receiving is actually too difficult to do on your own then consider bringing on a coach to help you access it.

Some Do's


  • Do let your man play, change the diaper, feed, talk, be with, the children his way. He isn't ever going to show up with the kids the way you do - nor should he. He has his way of showing up. Let him be himself.

  • Let the guy drive when he is driving. No short-cut advice. No, "we should have taken that highway" recap. Let it go. Relax. Get to the party 15 minutes late. It isn't worth the price of telling your man that you don't trust him to get you there all on his own.

  • When your man shares with you his distress or confusion regarding a choice he must make at either the office or with his friends, resist the urge to solve it, instead tell him you trust his judgment and will support him in his decision. And then do so.

  • Read the Surrendered Wife by Laura Doyle and learn what it is like to surrender and receive all that you are saying you really want!
  • Tuesday, August 18, 2009

    A Nice Shout out from Ad Hustler

    Brandon Hoffman aka Ad Hustler is one Righteous Dude. We met at the Affiliate Summit East 09 here in Gotham. He has written a nice piece about me on his site. I will be featured as a guest blogger and looking forward to giving some good juice to his peeps!
    Read it here:
    http://www.adhustler.com/introducing-kim-ann-curtin-adhustlercom-life-coach/

    http://www.adhustler.com/

    The Coach Shoppe's TV Debut on Blip TV


    Click here to view: http://blip.tv/file/2453935




    Kim's next Workshop @ 24 Seven 8/24/09




    Tools & Tactics To Help You Stand Out In This Tough Job Market
    August 24, 2009
    6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
    Soho Office, 120 Wooster St. b/t Prince and Spring, 4th Floor

    24 Seven is hosting a workshop with TheCoachShoppe.com’s Founder & Life Coach Kim Ann Curtin. Having worked previously for 10 years as an Executive & Personal Assistant to CEO’s Kim excelled at making the impossible happen time and again.

    Known to her friends as “Kim Possible;” she will share her most unusual techniques for standing out in a tough job market; negotiating a lower credit card rate; getting past gate keepers; charming decision makers; negotiating “long wait” appointments; securing hard to get show tickets; as well as how to secure a cab in the rain! Learn how to open doors for yourself in all areas of your life.

    You will engage in group participation as well as individual exercises such as:
    1) Phone Seduction
    2) Physical Invisibility and Notice-ability
    3) How to Get Past Gate Keepers
    4) Charming the Decision Makers

    If you feel stopped by the word "No" and think that only the lucky people win at this game of life than this is the workshop for you. If you are ready to create an extraordinary and exciting life then bring your current challenges and learn how to approach them in a brand new way.

    You will have fun; learn new techniques and find out the secrets of successful people everywhere. In this Hands-on workshop Kim will do “Solution Solving” for a select group of participants. Everyone will participate in powerful and creative group exercises. If you are ready to open all the closed doors in your life, this workshop is for you.

    Sunday, August 2, 2009

    Kim's Workshop: Are You What You Want to Be Now That You've Grown Up?







    Are You What You Want to Be Now That You’ve Grown Up?
    August 03, 2009 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
    Soho Office, 120 Wooster St. b/t Prince and Spring, 4th Floor

    24 Seven is hosting a workshop with TheCoachShoppe.com’s Founder & Life Coach Kim Ann Curtin. Having worked previously for 10 years as an Executive & Personal Assistant to CEO’s in banking & finance; Kim will share her journey of how she found her new career after 40; and teach you how to discover your true path.

    You will engage in group participation as well as individual exercises such as:
    1) Discovering Your Wants & Needs
    2) How to Hear Your Calling
    3) When & How to take the First Step

    If you are not doing what you love or settling in some way; if you are tired of replacing X with Y in your job search; if you feel stuck and unsatisfied then it’s time to get off the hamster wheel once and for all.

    You will learn how to listen to yourself in a new way so you can be the Hero of your own life. Kim will explain how to begin your Hero’s journey and what it will require of you. Bring with you a list of the jobs you’ve loved and hated and why.

    Kim will lead group exercises that will be informative, fun and facilitate powerful breakthroughs. This workshop is for those who are tired of settling and ready to live the life they’ve been waiting for.

    **Please note: Be sure you check your schedule and can attend the class and/or workshop before confirming registration. 24 Seven workshops and classes are non-refundable and non-transferable. Thank you for your cooperation.

    $30 for Premier Members$35 for Members



    Can't wait to read this book! The Other Within by Daniel Deardoff





    Daniel Deardorff knows otherness firsthand. This highly regarded “singer” in the old sense of that word—musician, storyteller, maker of ritual—had polio as an infant and has used a wheelchair most of his life, giving him a lived perspective that deeply informs his views on this subject. In The Other Within, Deardorff starts with a radical notion: to disclose the blessings of outsiderhood, the many gifts and insights contributed to culture by the marginalized and outcast. Unlike studies that stress the plight of the outsider, this one asserts that to be cast down and out of the consensus-worldview affords a difficult yet significant opportunity: to encounter oneself, not as defined by society but as one actually is. An eloquent spokesman for “the man or woman on the weird road,” Deardorff presents dozens of powerful examples from myth and literature to illustrate his message in a richly allusive, complex series of essays. Drawing on the work of mythologians, poets, psychologists, and scholars, The Other Within takes readers on an initiatory journey, uncovering the roots of human identity and imagination and offering insights–including “trickster wisdom”—revealing the mythic underpinnings of everyday life. This second edition includes updated text, a new introduction, and a helpful glossary. ~Amazon Review

    Thank you Charles Lawrence for this wonderful rec!

    Sunday, June 28, 2009

    I'm Angry





    "Our feelings control us when we subvert them and are no longer aware they exist." ~Theodore Isaac Rubin, MD

    I'm Angry. Yep, really angry. Seething; furious; upset; frustrated. I'm filled with disgust and disdain. These are feelings I'm not used to; nor comfortable with. Most of you know me as Little Miss Sunshine, Happy-go-lucky and Rebecca of Sunny Brook Farm.

    Anger scares me. I feel as though I'm ill equipped to cope with this emotion. I'm afraid it will take me over in some way. Yet, I'm not going to deny it or ignore it or push it away this time. I feel like a foreigner in new country experiencing strange customs and bizarre encounters. And I'm uncomfortable and somewhat exhilarated to see who I will be and what I will experience on this new journey.

    Anger is a part of being human - one thread in the tapestry of the human experience. Of course I've known this intellectually for a long time. But have I let myself embrace my anger? No. Thanks to my own work with my coach, I'm intentionally creating a space in my life for my anger. It is taking some effort because it's so new for me to stay with it not ignore nor deny it. I'm also up against centuries' of cultural conditioning that has labeled anger; wrong, bad even evil. For women especially to feel anger not to mention express it - is still taboo.

    Anger Insight #1
    You don't have to actually DO anything about your anger.
    Oh you may, of course:
    *Take a knife to a huge watermelon
    *Scream into your pillow every curse word you know
    *Throw plates into your fireplace
    *Listen to loud head banging music
    *Dance/Thrash/Exercise it consciously through your body
    *Journal with a red pen
    *Watch Clint Eastwood movies


    But creating a space for you to be with your anger doesn't mean you have to tell your boss off, curse out a relative or tell your lover to go to hell. All you need to do is feeeeel it and not rush past it. It won't be pleasant and that's okay, you'll survive.

    That belief was one of the reasons I've kept mine at bay. I thought you had to act when you felt anger. That it required an external response in some way, a sort of "announcement." This is a misnomer. On occasion we will be called to act and express it, you betcha! And yet most times our anger will ask of us to simply give it room and time to process. So let it. Let it breath, seethe, flare and flame. Acknowledging it, allowing it and accepting it will do you a world of good. And like a storm at sea it will pass. No emotion lasts forever.

    How do you do with your anger? Do you make it wrong or feel guilty or bad when it shows up? It's the bastard child, we've all been taught to disown and abandon. We shut it up and out with overeating; drinking; drugs; TV; sex and overworking. And we wonder why we have violence in our streets and our homes. To deny it causes either a slow toxicity within creating disease or an explosion of verbal or physical hostility.

    In this angry mood today I rode the subway and met Deidre. We both shared our anger about the subway system and the impending fare hike; we complained about our politician's in Albany. We ranted and moaned. If I had over-heard this conversation in the past I'd have judged it as "negative" or made it wrong in some way. Meanwhile it helped us to both "clear." Feeling our feelings, and expressing them enables us all to both move forward with our day not to mention our life.

    Anger awakens us. You feel alive after you've fully experienced it. And what's so amazing is that no one need know. It's yours and yours alone. Just like being in love. Or experiencing grief. Or joy. Or relief. Taste your feelings even the ones that you've denied....let them sit on your tongue and savor each one. This is what it means to be alive. What it means to be human. There's bitter and there's sweet. And they all have a place on the palate of our life.

    In The Angry Book by Dr. Theodore Isaac Rubin he opens with this quote from Joseph Conrad; "There is no rest for a messenger 'til the message is delivered." Allow the messages your Being needs to deliver to yourself to finally arrive. Bar none. And finally you will rest easy.

    Saturday, June 27, 2009

    Spiritual Enlightenment: The Damnedest Thing by Jed McKenna

    Stake life upon truth. ~Juvenal

    This book is sublime. Truth after truth after truth. Your foundations will be shook and you probably won't be happy about it; at least not initially. But truth ain't about happy; it's about truth.

    Some Jems:

    "Enlightenment isn't when you go there, it's when there comes here."

    "You're either awake or you're not."

    "I'll tell you what I wish someone had told me when I was feeling confused and alienated. I wish someone had told me that there wasn't something wrong with me and that I shouldn't be trying to make it right; that I should stop trying to pound a square peg into a round hole. I wish someone had told me that I wasn't like everyone else not because I was defective, but because I was designed for other things. Being different might seem like a curse, but the important part is that it's also a blessing. I wish someone had told me to stop trying to fix the curse part and start figuring out the blessing part."

    Wednesday, June 24, 2009

    Rule #1 When the Going Gets Tough, The Tough Relax



    "Don't let fear undermine your chance to do that one thing you've wanted to do." ~Alan M. Webber

    Yesterday afternoon I spent over three hours with the one and only Alan M. Webber. Alan is the cofounding editor of Fast Company magazine and former editorial director of the Harvard Business Review. His new book is titled, Rules of Thumb: 52 Truths for Winning at Business without Losing Yourself. My dear friend, Alex von Bidder arranged our meeting. Alex knows that my journey as an entrepreneur challenges me at times and he knows this man is a Jedi Master.

    I was a nervous wreck as I entered the lobby of his hotel. Where do I begin? How should I be? Do I ask a lot of questions? Or do I just be quiet and sit in awe? This is a once in a lifetime opportunity, I'd said to myself; I'd better not blow it. Then I remembered his Rule #1: When the Going Gets Tough, The Tough Relax and I started to calm down.

    In this 52 potato-chip size chaptered book, Alan's Rule #1 is definitely one of the more important rules. In it, he speaks about a critical interview he is about to give when at the last minute he realizes his anxiety about how it "should go" is about to sabotage the way it "will go." In addition to each brief yet powerful vignette he concludes each chapter with a "So What?" And Rule #1's "So What?" is this:
    "W. Edwards Deming is famous for his fourteen-point program which includes: "Drive out fear, so that everyone may work effectively for the company." What he didn't say is that the place to start is with you. Anytime you approach a task with fear you are at least a double loser. First, you color the work with fear and increase the chances of failure. Confidence and composure trump fear every time. Second, you guarantee that you won't enjoy the experience. Whether you succeed or fail, wouldn't you like to remember the experience as one you enjoyed, not one you suffered through?"

    This rings through my ear as I wait. And I promise myself that I will enjoy myself and this amazing man, and let go of how I "should be" and just be me and enjoy this time with him. And boy did I enjoy my time with him! Alan is incredibly down to earth, has an incredible wit, all in addition to being a genius. (He also does a mean imitation of Don Corleone.) He put me instantly at ease and thanks to that; I was able to learn so much. I don't know about you but the only teachers I've ever learned from in school were the ones that put me at ease and made me feel as though I was capable. That is another one of Alan's gifts; his ability to hold you as though you are capable of anything.

    And as I asked him how to take my coaching to the next level and how to approach new opportunities, I felt like I was with an old friend. What's so amazing about Alan and his Rules of Thumb is that you feel his warmth and clarity. How he is in the book, is how he is in person. A combination of sage-like wisdom, great humor along with powerful story telling and coaching.

    A few other favorite chapters from the book:
    Rule #6 If You Want to See With Fresh Eyes, Reframe the Picture
    Rule #9 Nothing Happens Until Money Changes Hands
    Rule #11 We've Moved From an Either/Or Past to a Both/And Future
    Rule #16 Facts are Facts; Stories Are How We Learn
    Rule #21 Great Leaders Answer Tom Peters' Great Question: "How Can I Capture the World's Imagination?"
    Rule #24 If You Want to Change the Game, Change the Economics of How the Game is Played
    Rule #29 Words Matter
    Rule #31 Everything Communicates
    Rule #46 Tough Leaders Wear Their Hearts on Their Sleeves.

    And then there is Rule #53 which is where Alan invites you to write your own rule. My Rule #53 is: Be Your Own Hero. And the greatest part of that rule is that being your own hero doesn't mean you can't have other heroes. Alan M. Webber is one of mine. And I've no doubt that after you read Rules of Thumb he will be yours as well.

    Sunday, June 14, 2009

    Space Clearing Your Life


    Kim's Space Clearing Altar

    "It is your work to clear away the mass of encumbering material of thoughts, so that you may bring into plain view the precious thing at the center of the mass." ~Robert Collier


    Some of you know that I got rid of a lot of papers of my mom back in January. I shared how letting go of them was huge for me, a physical and spiritual letting go of the past. What I didn't tell you is that there was one box of papers I couldn't and didn't let go of. It was the only one I felt unready to release for a myriad of reasons. I'm happy to report that I have finally let that box go.

    A friend had suggested I do a Space Clearing in light of this release. She introduced me to Felix Conradi, a professional Space Clearer and his business, http://creatingspaces.com/. Felix was trained by the world famous Feng Shui expert, Karen Kingston. He is one of the most powerful yet gentle men that I've ever met. Felix's Space Clearing for me last Saturday was a profound experience and it continues to be so. I've been wanting to write about it but felt unable to even articulate it until now.

    This was more than just a space clearing of my living space, this experience, ceremony to be more accurate, was really a psychic, emotional, spiritual and physical clearing of my life as well.

    What is a Space Clearing? Feng Shui is the ancient oriental art of enhancing and harmonizing the flow of energy in your surroundings. Karen Kingston pioneered the study of a specialized branch of Feng Shui called Space Clearing. By applying these principles you enhance the flow of energy, clear "stuck" energy and create sacred space in your home and/or workplace which of course translates into your life.


    Two Steps to Clear Out Clutter:

    1.) What does this item do for me energetically?
    Ask yourself this question about everything in your space, including pictures and furniture: "Does my energy lift or does it drop when I think about it or look at this item?" According to Karen in her book, Sacred Space with Feng Shui, Learn The Art of Space Clearing and Bring New Energy into Your Life, what usually stops people from clearing clutter is the phrase "just in case." "Just in case, I can never afford or find this again." Which really means preparing for a situation of neediness in the future, it sends a message to the Universe that you don't trust it to provide for you. If you haven't used it in a year or it pulls you down, clear it out; don't let the fact that it's an heirloom, a gift from a favorite relative or friend, stop you! Give it away, throw it away or have someone come and take it away. This will open up space literally and figuratively to allow the things you DO want in your life to show up. You must open up space so that what you want will have room to arrive. "Realize that everything you own holds your attention." Ask yourself is THAT really worthy of your attention?


    2.) Give yourself space to do this
    It's emotional, getting rid of old letters, photos, knick knacks, framed pictures and mementos. Sifting through will bring up lots of emotions. All of what we own reminds us of the emotions that have lived and still live within us, be it past relationships, family dynamics, regretful decisions, happy and sad events, love found and love lost. Doing this will take a lot out of you. Be gentle with yourself, and give yourself the space to feel your feelings when they show up. Do what you can, one drawer at a time if you need to break it down and do take breathers that are either hours, days or weeks long. Just keep at it until you're done.

    After the ceremony, I found myself the next day clearing out even more! I was able to let go of things I thought I'd never let go of. I've released so many things including a slew of books! Now I do LOVE my books and yet I've pulled over 100 of them from my shelves and am ready to let them go. Now others will enjoy them. I also cleared out my cell phone of phone numbers and text messages whose time had come to let go of. And I deleted thousands of emails - either sent or received. What a huge relief! I can describe it as a new energy in me and in my apartment. A sense of lightness and buoyancy. All these cobwebs I didn't even know where hanging round, are now clearly GONE.

    It's been quite an emotional road, I won't kid you. I still feel exhausted from the ceremony and not quite on steady ground. I'm adjusting to a large wide open sacred field that is now within me and my home. Having been away from that for what I believe has been years, at first feels overwhelming. So I'm being gentle with myself as I adjust to this new sacred space that I've created within myself and my life. I'm being careful about how I speak to myself; and what and with whom I welcome into it.

    And there is more to be done. There are some files of my business that I still need to sort through and toss what is no longer necessary. But my body and spirit will tell me when it's ready to do that. And there are a couple of other boxes of old mementos, meaningful letters and pictures that I haven't had the heart to go through yet either. But this is about a new way of living and that doesn't have to happen over night.

    They say that Gandhi could fit all that he owned in a shoe box. Well I might not qualify for a shoe box yet, but I'm a heck of a lot closer than I've ever been before and it feels like I've lost a thousand pounds.

    Karen mentions Stuart Wilde's book, The Secrets of Life, where he has this passage, "On making life sacred": How does something become sacred? It becomes sacred by people saying, "This is sacred." There is no other way. So how do you make your life sacred? You say, "This is sacred," and you treat it that way.

    Here's to your sacred space and your sacred life. Namaste.

    Sunday, May 17, 2009

    The Soloist



    True friendship isn't about being there when it's convenient; it's about being there when it's not.

    What I enjoyed most about the Soloist is that it let's us see that true friendship isn't about "fixing" the other one or the situation they are in -but about showing up and really being there. This doesn't mean we don't pitch in where and when we can! But it does mean that even after we've done that - don't be expecting some sort of fairytale ending. Life takes time to shift, and sometimes it's so slow and subtle that we think nothing is having an impact and it's easy to lose heart - but that just might be when the seeds are about to sprout.

    There are more then a few moments in my own life, especially when I was without a home, when friends easily could have given up on me. Said to themselves - the life this girl is living is too much; too convoluted, confusing, messy, overwhelming and walked. Actually, some friends did. But the ones that stuck around - well they are the reason, I'm still here. I survived, because in spite of there being no easy solution, eventually solutions and answers were found. If it wasn't for them being in it for the long haul, I don't know if I could have made it through myself.

    Who has helped you, in spite of there being no quick fix? Who has stuck by your side and just sat with you when you needed to cry? Who has listened to you, without advice, holding only space for you that allowed you to express your pain, your questions, your rage? Can you remember the huge impact it had on you? Do you remember feeling empowered afterward? As though - now you could go on?

    When was the last time you did this for someone? Just BEEN THERE. It truly is a courageous act to not fix, not solve, just be with someone in their need. To sit with someone in their pain, feel it and wait. Waiting it out with them is not easy, it's hard. If you're not sure how one does this effectively, then see The Soloist and learn from Mr. Steve Lopez as he demonstrates what it looks like. It's a gorgeous sight to behold.

    True friendship is of course about doing, just remember that sometimes it's about being.

    Sunday, May 10, 2009

    Honor Your Self-Mother Today



    An Open Letter for those with less than ideal Mothers or no Mother at all:


    I loved and still love my mother, don't get me wrong. But she wasn't an ideal mother. This takes a lot of courage for me to admit, even to myself, because on so many levels I felt love from her and with all I now know about her, I still would not trade her for anything, but in these years since her death I've had the freedom to slowly come to grips with just how mentally unhealthy she was and because of this how much wounding this caused that I continue to heal from.

    So if your mother was less than ideal or if you grew up motherless, would you be willing to celebrate yourself today? Would you be willing to honor your own ability to self-mother yourself? (Male or female, we all have mothering qualities within us.) Because YOU are what has gotten yourself through all these years without one and that is one amazing feat and I say it's about time you honor yourself.

    Buy yourself a beautiful bouquet of flowers today, take yourself out to brunch. Walk in the fresh golden air of this lovely day, in your favorite park and praise yourself for all you have been through and risen above, doing it all without the ideal mother's love. Allow Gaia, the Mother Goddess to cradle you. Honor and allow any pain, anger disappointment and grief you feel in the midst of this day as you watch what appear to be "perfect" mothers around you. Allow yourself to feel what you do without making any of it wrong or feeling guilty in any way.

    For those unsure about what an ideal mother's love looks like here are some basic rights that we all have in every relationship, including with our mothers:

    To feel safe in the relationship
    To be treated respectfully
    To not be abused verbally, emotionally, or physically
    To be heard
    To be appreciated and valued
    To have your privacy and boundaries respected
    To have your needs met
    To feel good about yourself in the relationship

    If these rights are not or were not honored by your mother, then I ask you to begin to honor them for yourself, in your own heart and with your own love.

    I honor and give thanks to the amazing mother within you!

    Wild Geese by Mary Oliver
    You do not have to be good.
    You do not have to walk on your knees
    For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
    You only have to let the soft animal of your body
    love what it loves.
    Tell me about your despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
    Meanwhile the world goes on.
    Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
    are moving across the landscapes,
    over the prairies and the deep trees,
    the mountains and the rivers.
    Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
    are heading home again.
    Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
    the world offers itself to your imagination,
    calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting --
    over and over announcing your place
    in the family of things.

    Saturday, May 9, 2009

    the experiment, Wed. May 13 6-9pm in NYC



    Do you consider yourself a Right Brainer or a Left Brainer? What's the difference? A Right Brainer is usually known as creative, intuitive and holistic: designers, inventors, teachers, storytellers. Left Brainers are known as more linear, sequential, analytical: lawyers, accountants, software engineers.

    Dan Pink in A Whole New Mind, says we are now in the midst of a seismic shift moving from the logical to intuitive empathic world. Slowly, but surely, it's on its way, ready or not folks here it comes!

    That's why I'm so excited to invite you to an amazing event that my friend and colleague Gina Rudan http://www.genuineinsights.com/ has created for us here in NYC ~in fact I've never heard of anything like this before!

    It's called the experiment and it happens this Wed. May 13 from 6-9 pm at 1 River Place 3rd Floor, (42nd Street btwn 11 & 12th Ave.) It will be a multi-sensory collaborative experiment to engage creativity, innovation and co-develop. Left and Right Brainers will come together and help each other tap into our juice so we both benefit from one another.

    It will be part workshop, part game-playing, part learning seminar, part networking. There will be an art exhibit, wine tasting, co-creation of ideas, game playing and cupcake eating all while a hip DJ spins music. All your senses will be stimulated.

    You will leave learning how to harness and leverage your creative abilities; strengths and attributes from a personal branding perspective. You will walk away with Personal Branding strategies and ideas for garnering visibility so you can get the competitive advantage!

    Inspired by Dan Pink and his book (He is a supporter of the event!) Gina will be airing her interview with him where he will share his personal ADVICE for all of us at the event.

    The fee is $25 for my peeps. RSVP here http://www.genuineinsights.com/resources.php
    (that's a 50% discount folks!) (And for you Lost fans - this ends just in time for the season finale!)

    Email me for more information: kim@thecoachshoppe.com or call me if you would like to attend: 646-373-1282

    Thursday, April 30, 2009

    World Laughter Day is May 3



    "Laughter can play a major role in reducing stress in the workplace," Dr. Madan Kataria says. I first learned about Laughter Clubs in Dan Pink's A Whole New Mind. Dr. Kataria noticed patients getting better faster when they laughed so he thought if laughter was so good why not start a laughter club?

    And don't forget the famous Norman Cousins who is know for "laughing his way to health," a simplified explanation of the healing method he employed when diagnosed as having ankylosing spondylitis. Almost paralyzed, given only a few months to live, Cousins ordered himself checked out of the hospital. He moved into a hotel room and began taking extremely high doses of vitamin C and also exposed himself to equally high doses of humor. "I made the joyous discovery that ten minutes of genuine belly laughter had an anesthetic effect and would give me at least two hours of pain-free sleep," he reported. "When the pain-killing effect of the laughter wore off, we would switch on the motion picture projector again and not infrequently, it would lead to another pain-free interval."

    This is why I advocate laughing! Well that and it just feeeeeels so good! Come and join me on World Laughter Day, this Sunday, May 3, Me and the NY Laughter Yoga Meet Up Group will meet at 12:30 pm at Union Square, at Broadway & 14th St, NYC (across from Whole Foods.) Shoot me an email if you want to go together! Kim@TheCoachShoppe.com

    Here is the link to join the Meet Up Group: http://yoga.meetup.com/502/calendar/10243087/ Not in NYC? Info for you: http://www.laughteryoga.org/

    Sunday, April 26, 2009

    Career Transition



    I spoke at the Learning Annex's MoneyFest this past Saturday. I was asked to speak about Career Transition. Suze Orman was there as was Donald Trump. I found out when I arrived that me and the Donald would both go on at 4 pm, so I had a little competition or should I say Donald did. ;-)

    Here's some highlights:
    When was the last time you woke up like a 5 year old does when they wake up in the morning? With that energy and excitement!? They exude over just being able to do this thing called life ALL OVER AGAIN. It's like they wake up and they are ready to GO!

    When was the last time you woke up that way? Or even remember feeling that way? If it's been too long -then it's time to do something about it.

    Here are my three suggestions:
    1.) Write a needs list. Write down all the things you "need." Some Universal Needs: Connection, Acceptance, Affection, Integrity, Play, Movement, Consciousness, Independence, Freedom, Choice, Trust, Love, Sexual expression, Air, Rest, Safety, Beauty, Order, Reciprocity. For more see http://www.cnvc.org/

    2.) Identify the things in your life that you are currently doing that you despise. Get really clear on what these things are and how often you are participating in them.

    3.) Identify the things you love to do so much that you would pay someone to let you do them.

    Start here with these steps when you decide it's time for a career or any transition. Having clarity over these 3 items will ensure that when you do step into something new -you will be sure to be able to do it in a way that will honor your needs and values.

    One participant asked how to stand out among a sea of applicants. My advice was BE YOU. Being authentic is so powerful today since we see so little of it. If you show up and confidently be who you are - that alone will make you stand out in a crowd. As Oscar Wilde says, "Be yourself everyone else is already taken."

    Monday, April 13, 2009

    50 min for $50



    I was interviewed by CNN Money last week and what did I tell them? I told them I want a world where coaching is available to everyone who wants it. I want it to be affordable. So do you know what dawned on me?!

    "I must be the change I wish to see in the world."

    If you email or call me in the next week I will offer you a 50 min coaching session for $50. A 75% savings.

    PS I have over 700 people on my email list so there are just so many I can do - reply quickly if you're interested in a 50 min coaching session for $50. A 75% savings.

    Saturday, April 11, 2009

    Mallomars Are Easter



    Let me explain. My mama was one of those mama's that really DID up the holidays. Every Easter my sister and I would get ourselves a beautiful pastel wicker basket filled with good jelly beans, quality chocolate bunny rabbits, yellow marshmallow Peep chicks, a brand new stuffed animal (my sister would get a aqua blue ribbon trimmed one and I a pink trimmed one) along with our own box of Mallomars. Back then they came in two cardboard boxes and I'd usually have polished off an entire box, feeling slightly ill on the way to church.

    We would also search in the morning for the Paas decorated hard boiled eggs that our mom would have hidden the night before.

    A new purple or white dress from Sears my sister and I would be excited to wear along with the white patent leather Mary Jane's, since officially as of Easter Sunday, white shoes could be worn again.

    Those times were like Normal Rockwell in so many ways. Of course things weren't perfect, but my mother had the ability to create tradition such that whatever was going on these holiday times were magical.

    I appreciate these traditions, now more than ever. There isn't a box of Mallomars or a package of the yellow Peep chicks that doesn't fill my heart with the love my mama had for me and my sister.

    Easter, Passover and Spring Equinox have this all in common: New Life thanks to Love.

    We all have choice every day we wake up, to live our life anew. As the flowers begin to blossom, as the leaves begin to grow back, bring your favorite memories with you into your New Spring, into your New Life. Spring is a fresh start. Where in your life do you want that fresh start? It's yours for the taking! So go for it.

    And while you're at it -bring along those mallomars!

    Mallomars
    In the US Mallomars [19] are produced seasonally at Nabisco. A circle of Graham cracker is covered with a puff of extruded marshmallow, then "enrobed" in dark chocolate, which forms a hard shell. Mallomars were introduced to the public in 1913, the same year as the Moon Pie (a confection which has similar ingredients). The first box of Mallomars was sold in West Hoboken, NJ (now Union City, NJ). Nabisco discusses it with a short story printed on Mallomar boxes.

    Because Mallomars melt easily in summer temperatures, they can become difficult to find during the summer: they are generally available from early October through April. [20]Devoted eaters of the cookie have been known to stock up during winter months and keep them refrigerated over the summer. Seventy percent of all Mallomars sold are sold in metropolitan New York.

    Thursday, April 9, 2009

    Please listen to this man: Gary Vaynerchuk



    Go past the lanquage, Web 2.0 and the wine...What this man is talking about IS YOUR LIFE!

    Kim the Columnist

    Kim is now a columnist for The Mann Report and Mann on the Street.

    Here is what President & Executive Editor Jeff Mann has to say about Kim:

    "We've added a new Contributing Columnist to Mann On The Street. Kim Ann Curtin, CEO and Founder of The Coach Shoppe, will be your dose of inspiration each month. With the style and ease of a friend, Kim will steer you in a positive direction when it comes to bettering your life. This month, Kim tells us that, despite the worries that surround us, we should remain positive; and finding that will to proceed and succeed in life is within us." ~Jeff Mann, Mann Publications

    For more info: http://www.mannpublications.net/magazines/mann-on-the-street/

    Tuesday, April 7, 2009

    A Line for Coaching Today on Wall Street



    Today was colder than I would have liked it to be but all the rain last week kept me from my almost weekly coaching gig down here on Wall Street. So many people today wanted coaching, that I actually had a line at one point.

    Today was interesting as well because a CNN Money film crew interviewed me and some of those folks that were coached. They wanted to interview those I coached to find out what the experience was like for them.

    Folks are so nice to me down there. I see the same people all the time now and they wave when they pass me by. I even know the cops on the beat there - and they want to know where I've been when I'm not down there. It's like a little community down there. I love coaching down there. For me it's easy.

    This is easy for me because I love coaching.

    May I ask you what you love to do? What is easy for you? How could you give back right now, to those who are stressed out, that's easy for you? Things that come natural to you - giving back doesn't have to be a big deal or big production - but the impact it will have on another will be more profound then you realize.

    Here's an example of an impact someone had on me, two weeks ago I met a woman at an art show and within 5 min of speaking with me, she looked me up and down and said, "You've got one beautiful shape on that body of yours!" And she wasn't hitting on me either - just giving me a compliment. BOY OH BOY she made my DAY! I'm still leaning into that compliment! I can't tell you how good it made me feel and still makes me feel. (Especially since I was feeling upset over the recent 5 pounds I've gained.)

    We really have an impact on one another. So I ask that you be intentional with that impact. And easy and simple is all it needs to be.

    Saturday, April 4, 2009

    Lars and the Real Girl



    I'm late on this bandwagon. Two years late. But I can tell you that in spite of seeing two of my fav actors in this film (Paul Schneider & Patricia Clarkson) I didn't feel that drawn in by this trailer. I had heard a little something way back when about it from one or two people but nothing remarkable. Then recently someone really WENT OFF about how amazing it was. I watched it the other night.

    This is a GORGEOUS film. The message is profound. The acting is superb. Ryan Gosling is spot on brilliant!

    I love it so much because at the heart of it - nobody makes Lars wrong. That is what is so profound about it. He receives unconditional love and acceptance. What would it be like if everyone around us didn't try to change us or our peccadillo's but just let them be? And when you were ready to move on you would. Not out of guilt or shame but because you were ready.

    What if every one loved and supported you until you were ready? What would that be like? What would it be like if we threw away all the labels we use? Would all of us breath easier?

    This movie shows us that we do know what we need to heal. And trusting in that. This movie is also about mercy, love and laughter. Who could ask for anything more?

    Suze Orman, the Learning Annex & Me!








    I've been invited to present at Moneyfest where Suze Orman, author of Young, Fabulous and Broke, will be speaking! I'm very EXCITED! The Learning Annex's Moneyfest is an all day event on Saturaday, April 25.

    Click here for more info: http://www.moneyfest.com/course_detail.tml?course=careers_for_people

    I will be on a panel discussion of Career Transition for 45+ but ALL career transitions -no matter the age- will be discussed. If you want me to address any of the issues this topic brings up for you, let me know in an email kim@thecoachshoppe.com.

    The Learning Annex will be featuring a slew of other panels all day as well on all sorts of money making ideas. I hope to see you there!

    Thursday, April 2, 2009

    Meeting Bill Murray; Deep as well as Funny



    I was having a drink in the Time Warner Center tonight when in walks the one and only Bill Murray, I heard his distinct voice before I even saw his face and recognized it immediately. As he and his friends were waiting for seats at the bar, I caught his eye and asked him if I could buy him a Santori. (The Japanese whiskey his character promotes in Lost in Translation.) He laughed and said, "Now that would be something!" since finding it anywhere out of Japan is nearly impossible.

    As my friend and I were leaving, I decided to thank him on the way out for all the joy he has given me - so I hesitatingly approached him and he graciously stopped the conversation with his friends. I thanked him for all the laughter he had given to me and how grateful I was to him for it. Then I told him that I thought Lost in Translation was one of his best films. He was so kind and engaging! I even told him when I was in Japan I'd visited so many of the places that were featured in his film.

    As I was about to leave I handed my business card to him and as he looked at it and turned it over he read the back out loud: The Privilege of a Lifetime is Being Who You Are. And he thought for a moment and then said to me, "Actually, being who you are, is the obligation of a lifetime."

    Whoa. Yes indeed, he is quite right. It is the obligation of a lifetime.

    Thank you Mr. Murray, not only your wit but for your wisdom. Thank you for living up to your obligation of being who you are. We are all the better for it.

    (SIDE BAR: When I was visiting The Park Hyatt Tokyo's New York Bar -the one featured above - to have my glass of Santori Whiskey, I was very fortunate to hear the one and only jazz singer Angela Stribling. Angela has performed there for the past four years. Lucky for me I sat down that night next to her handsome boyfriend, now fiance, and he invited me to join them. Angela is one talented lady! Check her out! http://www.angelastribling.com/ Love to you girl!)

    Tuesday, March 31, 2009

    Mary Oliver, Poet & Liberator

    I can't wait to get my hands on the new Mary Oliver book of poems called Evidence. She is one of my ALL TIME FAVORITE poets.

    The Journey by Ms. Oliver helped me to peel myself away from my mother. Her care taking was beyond my ability and in spite of the many long years of it -my guilt over her entry into a nursing home was legion. This poem gave me the courage to do what I knew I had to do. It helped facilitate my freedom.

    THE JOURNEY

    One day you finally knew
    what you had to do, and began,
    though the voices around you
    kept shouting
    their bad advice--
    though the whole house
    began to tremble
    and you felt the old tug
    at your ankles.
    "Mend my life!"
    each voice cried.
    But you didn't stop.
    You knew what you had to do,
    though the wind pried
    with its stiff fingers
    at the very foundations,
    though their melancholy
    was terrible.
    It was already late
    enough, and a wild night,
    and the road full of fallen
    branches and stones.
    But little by little,
    as you left their voices behind,
    the stars began to burn
    through the sheets of clouds,
    and there was a new voice
    which you slowly
    recognized as your own,
    that kept you company
    as you strode deeper and deeper
    into the world,
    determined to do
    the only thing you could do--
    determined to save
    the only life you could save.

    Monday, March 30, 2009

    Is a MFA better than an MBA?



    According to Daniel Pink it is! In his book A Whole New Mind, Why Right-brainers Will Rule the Future, he speaks about how left brain skills are continuing to be outsourced while the right brain skills are becoming more and more sought after. Want an example? A North London football club has its own poet in residence.

    Here are the three questions that he suggests we ask ourselves and our organizations:

    1. Can someone overseas do it cheaper?
    2. Can a computer do it faster?
    3. Is what I'm offering in demand in an age of abundance?

    He says that if your answer to 1 or 2 is yes or your answer to 3 is no, then their's deep trouble up ahead.

    His book has opened the door on so much for me personally, I highly recommend it.

    For more about Daniel Pink visit: www.danielpink.com


    Sunday, March 29, 2009

    Where the Hell is Frank...er I mean Matt?

    I know this video has been circulating for a while but I want to dedicate this to my friend Frank who has courageously said, SAYONARA to the corporate world and is about to embark on a four month trip around the world. In honor of his courage and integrity I salute him! And look forward to asking Where the Hell is Frank? for the next four months!


    Saturday, March 28, 2009

    Jospeh Campbell Part 3 of 3



    The place I love to focus on in my coaching is to help folks see that the map of the Hero's Journey is there for them to use to help them navigate the things that show up in their life. It's discussed in the Power of Myth but truly delved into in Campbell's other masterpiece, The Hero With a Thousand Faces.

    In it he discusses the Adventure of the Hero. There are three main parts: Departure, Initiation, Return.

    Within every Hero's Departure these occur in one way or another:
    1. The Call to Adventure
    2. Refusal or Heeding of the Call
    3. Supernatural Aid
    4. The Crossing of the Threshold
    5. The Belly of the Whale

    Then in the Initiation these:
    1. The Road of Trials
    2. The Meeting with the Goddess
    3. Woman as the Temptress
    4. Atonement with the Father
    5. Apotheosis
    6. The Ultimate Boon

    And in the Return:
    1. Refusal of the Return
    2. The Magic Flight
    3. Rescue from Without
    4. The Crossing of the Return Threshold
    5. Master of the Two Worlds
    6. Freedom to Live

    Now of course some of these show up in different styles and experiences but these are the general outline all the hero's of time have found themselves in.

    I believe that sometimes there are years spent on a Hero Journey's AND sometimes we can experience a journey in days, if not hours. Some of our journey's are epic and some are minor. But they are all important.

    Here is what I want you to know. You can refuse the Call. You can turn away from it, at least temporarily. And no one might even know that you refused it. Or perhaps you were talked out of it by someone (most likely someone who ignored their own.) But here is the thing, one day you will have to heed it, all of us will. So the sooner you heed it, the sooner you will live the kind of life you've dreamed of. A life that is full of possibility and transformation.

    You are who you've been waiting for. The Hero is you, isn't it time you save yourself?

    www.jcf.org

    Friday, March 27, 2009

    More JC




    I remember the first time I watched Bill Moyers interview Joseph Campbell in The Power of Myth on PBS in 1988. I was mesmerized. Every story he told drew me in deeper and deeper. My family and I went right out and bought the cassette tapes of the interview and listened to those 6 hours of his interviews again and again. It was imaginative, eye opening and empowering.

    I felt affirmed actually. I didn't know that was what it was doing for me at the time but now I am old enough to realize affirmation was one of the gifts the interviews gave me.

    My yearnings to follow my own path were being validated by the stories Mr. Campbell told. And the frustration one has setting out on that lone path, was also addressed. He was telling MY story! And YOURS. This is why it became such a hit. He was addressing all of OUR stories. Yes of course it was a different wardrobe, set, cast of characters, a different landscape but the journey from fear to power is always the same.

    Finding out that not only was this call I was hearing real and important to listen to, I discovered that other hero's had been called before and also were afraid to heed it. The feeling of having company was a relief. Instead of feeling like some odd-ball freak, I learned that I had some damn good company. And Luke Skywalker was the least among them! Also there was a map. There were particular markers that were the same for every hero - and now I had been given that map. And everyone knows when you are lost you want either a guide or a map to show you the way. With JC's Power of Myth - I was given both.

    Part III tomorrow.
    www.jcf.org

    Thursday, March 26, 2009

    Happy Birthday Joseph Campbell!

    "Your bliss can guide you to that transcendent mystery, because bliss is the welling up of the energy of the transcendent wisdom within you. So when the bliss cuts off, you know that you've cut off the welling up; try to find it again. And that will be your Hermes guide, the dog that can follow the invisible trail for you. And that's the way it is. One works out one's own myth that way." ~Joseph Campbell, from Pathways to Bliss

    This man! Joseph Campbell! Well, where to begin? This might just have to be my first in a series of blog postings. I don't know how to express just how much this man and his work on mythology has had on my life, my coaching and my healing. His work has been so incredibly life changing for me that I feel as though words might not adequately express what his writings have done for me not to mention his legions of fans. And the best part is that he has impacted people who don't even know him by name. That's right. Want an example? Star Wars. Ever heard of that? Then, guess what? YOU have been a beneficiary of HIM.

    As simple as his writings are, they leave you with an essence of wholeness in their wake. His writings transcend the day to day. And it's all because he is one helluva story teller. And who among us all doesn't like an incredible story!? In my new most favorite book in the world, A Whole New Mind by Daniel Pink, he speaks of Mr. Campbell: "In his 1949 book, The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Campbell argued that all myths-across time and across cultures-contain the same basic ingredients and follow the same general recipe. There are never any new stories, he said-just the same stories retold. And the one overarching story, the blueprint for tales since humankind's earliest days, is the "hero's journey." The hero's journey has three main parts: Departure, Initiation, and Return. The hero hears the call, refuses it at first, and then crosses the threshold into a new world. During Initiation, he faces challenges and stares into the abyss. But along the way-usually with the help of mentors who give the hero a divine gift-he transforms and becomes at one with his new self. Then he returns, becoming the master of two worlds, committed to improving each. This structure underlies Christ, Homer's Odyssey, the story of Buddha, Muhammad, the legend of King Arthur, the story of Sacagawea, Huckleberry Finn, Star Wars, The Matrix and Campbell would have argued, just about every other epic tale."

    Part Two of Three tomorrow!
    (That's right, yesterday's posting was done with no relation to JC's birthday today so technically today is Part One.)

    For more information on the late great Joseph Campbell please visit: http://www.jcf.org/

    Wednesday, March 25, 2009

    The Hero's Adventure

    Furthermore, we have not even to risk the adventure alone, for the heroes of all time have gone before us. The labyrinth is thoroughly known. We have only to follow the thread of the hero path, and where we had thought to find an abomination, we shall find a god. And where we had thought to slay another, we shall slay ourselves. Where we had thought to travel outward, we will come to the enter of our own existence. And where we had thought to be alone, we will be with all the world. ~Joseph Campbell

    Today a conversation with my coach about my Hero's Journey took a surprising turn. And the first thing that I thought of afterward was this quote. When we travel on our Adventure - we will at times be so certain that we are there for one reason and yet hero's journey after hero's journey shows us that it rarely is the case. What we had thought was_____turns out to not be what we thought at all. The good news, as Campbell says, is that we do not have to risk the adventure alone, for the heroes of all time have gone before us. What honorable company we keep when we walk our Hero's Adventure!

    Are you walking yours?

    Tuesday, March 24, 2009

    Everything's Amazing, Nobody's Happy



    This four minute monologue is both profound and hysterical. Can't find that every day!

    Monday, March 23, 2009

    Thank God for Strangers

    For the Sake of Strangers by Dorianne Laux
    No matter what the grief, its weight,
    we are obliged to carry it.
    We rise and gather momentum, the dull strength
    that pushes us through crowds.
    And then the young boy gives me directions
    so avidly. A woman holds the glass door open,
    waits patiently for my empty body to pass through.
    All day it continues, each kindness
    reaching toward another- a stranger
    singing to no one as I pass on the path, trees
    offering their blossoms, a retarded child
    who lifts his almond eyes and smiles.
    Somehow they always find me, seem even
    to be waiting, determined to keep me
    from myself, from the thing that calls to me
    as it must have once called to them –
    this temptation to step off the edge
    and fall weightless, away from the world.

    Sunday, March 22, 2009

    It's Not How Good You Are, It's How Good You Want to Be

    Paul Arden is the author of this blog's title. This book shoots straight from the hip, is clever, and leaves you with a feeling of "I should have known this!" And it's a FAST read. Some excerpts:

    When it can't be done do it. If you don't do it, it doesn't exist.
    A NEW idea can be either unfamiliar, or silly or both. It can't be judged by description. It needs to be done (made) to exist.

    It is unlikely that anyone will sanction the cost of something they don't understand, therefore you have no choice but to do it yourself. At whatever cost. You may have to beg, steal and borrow to get it done. But that's for you to work out how you do it. It's exciting. It's difficult and it's fun. If it was easy anyone could do it.

    The film Citizen Kane is a very good example. It was stolen not sanctioned. Orson Welles could not find any backers, but he did raise a small sum for casting. He begged, borrowed and cajoled people into building sets and shooting full-blown screen testes which eventually formed a third of the film.
    IT EXISTED. Backers could see that they were getting. He got the money.

    Without him doing it when it supposedly couldn't be done, it would be another in the endless list of ideas that never happened.


    The PEROSN Who Doesn't Make Mistakes Is Unlikely to Make Anything

    Benjamin Franklin said, I haven't failed, "I've had 10,000 ideas that didn't work."

    Thomas Edison said, "Of the 200 light bulbs that didn't work, every failure told me something that I was able to incorporate into the next attempt."

    Theater director Joan Littlewood said, "If we don't get lost, we'll never find a new route."

    All of them understood that failures and false starts are a precondition of success.

    At the last company I worked for you would not be fired for being wrong, but you would be fired for not having initiative. It had a positive attitude to mistakes. It was a great company. Failure was a major contributor to its success.
    *

    What would it be like if you approached tomorrow with these two attitudes? Doing the impossible and happy when you made mistakes. What could you apply this to? Your career? Your relationships? Actually what couldn't you apply this to?

    * Excerpts from It's Not How Good You Are, It's How Good You Want to Be, by Paul Arden

    (#18 of 100 in 100 Blog Posting Challenge)

    Saturday, March 21, 2009

    The Looking Glass

    My mother was my Catechism teacher when I was a young girl. One day in class she announced that at our next meeting, she would be showing us God's most precious gift. All the kids after class asked me how the heck did my mother get a hold of such a thing. I was as baffled as them. I had no idea and in spite of my pleading through out the week to please please pleeeease, tell me what it was, she refused and insisted I wait along with the rest of my classmates until the following class.

    The day finally arrived and in the apartment we lived in we had a very long hallway in which each of us were instructed to walk down it, one at a time. When I arrived she asked me to close my eyes and when I opened them I would be looking at God's most precious gift. Excitedly I closed them, and opened them up to see my own reflection in a mirror. And she said in a solemn voice, "Take a close look, for what you see is God's most precious gift." I remember being speechless. Staggered even. It was a profound moment for me - as I believe it was for the rest of my class. Each child came back utterly silent and sat still until every one had completed that journey down the hall. We were at most 12 years old, but this profound message wasn't lost on a single one of us.

    Early this morning I thought I would share in the blog posting today, an exercise that I had heard about and started but didn't continue. It was to say I love you to yourself every time you looked in a mirror. For either an entire week, month etc. Those who did it reported extraordinary results. I started it a few weeks ago and found it more challenging than I expected and at some point "forgot" about it. Until this morning. I didn't have time to write my posting this morning, so figured I would let the day guide me as to what to write.

    Interestingly enought, tonight I had plans to attend a Wiccian ceremony for women to honor and welcome in the Spring Equinox. We also would be welcoming in the Goddess, Artha, the mother of fire and light, who comes to ask us to acknowledge the Goddess within. After walking through a Labyrinth we were then asked to look in a mirror to see and acknowledge the Goddess within.

    I thought it so serendipitous that I would walk into this very ceremony tonight hours after feeling called to write about the I love you mirror exercise. And as I sat in front of the mirror this night looking through my tears for the Goddess within me not only was I blessed to see her if only for a flash, but I was also brought back to my 12 year old self in front of that mirror my mother held up to me so many years ago with it's powerful message.

    Would you be willing to look in your mirror today and tell yourself that you are God's most precious gift? Would you be willing to look in the mirror and see your God/Goddess with in? Would you be willing to tell yourself that you love you? If your response is yes, to even one of these, then realize you and your journey here, won't ever be the same. Namaste.

    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.” ~Marianne Williamson

    Friday, March 20, 2009

    Give it if you got it, Get if you don't

    If I ever find truth I'm gonna let you know
    If I ever find faith I'm gonna sit in every bit of its afterglow
    If I ever find a way to bring love here today
    You better bet your life that this is what I'll say
    Give it if you've got it
    Get it if you don't

    Take my hand in the meantime
    And let's walk into the sunshine
    Everybody got something that they want to sing about, laugh about, cry about
    It's true
    For me it's you

    Give it away, give it away, give it away
    If it's something that you got layin' round your house
    Man let me tell ya if ain't a kiss
    It's something you'll never miss
    Give it to somebody that don't have a thing layin' round like a prayer or a sweet sound
    Give it if you've got it
    Get it if you don't

    Take my hand in the meantime
    Let's walk into the sunshine
    Everybody got something that they want to sing about, laugh about, cry about
    It's true
    For me it's you

    Give it to somebody that don't have a thing
    Ain't got socials to dis or a love song to sing - no
    Get yourself on the right track
    Let somebody ride your back for a while

    If I ever find truth I'm gonna let you know
    You better bet your life
    if this is what I'm gonna say
    just give it away
    You can't take it where you're goin anyway

    Take my hand in the meantime
    And let's walk into the sunshine
    Everybody got something they want to sing about, laugh about cry about it's true
    For me it's you
    ~Train

    This song by Train, captures the essence of what friendship does. The thing about friendship is that it isn't the place where people are always raising the bar for you or asking you to strive. Of course on occasion it happens but it isn't the standard. Friendship is the place where they accept you as you ARE and it's enough, in fact it's more than enough. True friendship is the place that feels like a well-worn pair of jeans. It doesn't mean true friends won't on occasion kick your ass however for the most part it's like coming home. The place where you can exhale.

    I am the first to suggest folks have themselves a coach, mastermind team or as Keith Ferrazzi's advocates, a lifeline so you are "called forth." But we all need to have those friends in our life who will let us "sing, laugh, and cry."

    I am so blessed, because I've always had incredible friends. They have loved me unconditionally in more ways then I ever knew was even possible to be loved. They have accepted my shortcomings, odd behaviours and peccadillo's with aplomb. They have given me loyalty worthy of royalty, rained generosity upon me, guided me with the wisdom of Solomon, shown me acceptance as though they were a parent and held me as though I were a sibling.

    The value they bring to life is legion. Thanks to them, we are able to get out of bed on hard days, or shift out of a dark funk in the blink of an eye. Thanks to friendship we can find the strength we didn't know we had. True friends make us take a second look at ourselves and remind us when we forget - that there must be something there, if indeed this wonderful person chooses to have us in their life.

    If right now you're feeling like you don't have these kind of pivotal relationships then like the songs says "Get it if you don't." How?

    BE A FRIEND. The next time someone needs to talk, listen without solving anything. Be still and present and give them empathy. Soon enough you will find your life being showered with new friends. It does start with us, accept and love those in your circles for who they are NOW and not who they should BECOME. Love them in their fraility, confusion, uncertainity, insecurity and frustration.

    Just take their hand and walk with them in the sunshine. And it will be enough, I promise you.
    (#16 of the 100 Blog Posting Challenge)

    Thursday, March 19, 2009

    Rule #6

    Two prime ministers are sitting in a room discussing affairs of state. Suddenly a man bursts in, apoplectic with fury, shouting and stamping and banging his fist on the desk. The resident prime minister admonishes him: "Peter," he says, "kindly remember Rule Number 6," whereupon Peter is instantly restored to complete calm, apologizes, and withdraws. The politicians return to their conversation, only to be interrupted yet again twenty minutes later by an hysterical woman gesticulating wildly, her hair flying. Again the intruder is greeted with the words: "Marie, please remember Rule Number 6." Complete calm descends once more, and she too withdraws with a bow and an apology. When the scene is repeated for a third time, the visiting prime minister addresses his colleague: "My dear friend, I've seen many things in my life, but never anything as remarkable as this. Would you be willing to share with me the secret of Rule Number 6?" "Very simple," replies the resident prime minister. "Rule Number 6 is 'Don't take yourself so damn seriously.'" "Ah," says his visitor, "that is a fine rule." After a moment of pondering, he inquires, "And what, may I ask, are the other rules?"

    "There aren't any."


    Ain't that a gem? Sometimes I do take myself too damn seriously. I am stressed lately because business is slow. I've had to get creative and s-t-r-e-t-c-h myself in ways unexpected. One of the things that usually goes right out the window when I start to get uptight is my sense of humor. And that is so tragic because I really do have an excellent sense of humor! The bottom line is I need to remember that no matter what is going on: I'M ALIVE & I'M HEALTHY. And to not take myself or the sitch I'm in so seriously. That reminds me of this quote I heard the other day from a fomer POW: "Any day you wake up and you have a doorknob on your side of the door is a good day."

    Like Julian of Norwich says, All will be well. All will be well and all manner of things will be well.

    Rule #6 is from one of my ALL TIME FAVORITE BOOKS, The Art of Possibility by Rosamund and Benjamin Zander. This book will make you feel good no matter what life is dishing you. And I've no doubt what life is dishing you right now is more challenging than usual. Every chapter will give you a paradigm shift that will blow your socks off. I read it about a year ago and find it showing up again recently in my life. Maybe that is the Universe's way of telling me to re-read it.

    It's profound without being "heavy" or "deep." It will provide laughter and turn lightbulb's on. It will shift something within your spirit that will wake you up, turn you on and clear your line of vision in a whole new way.

    Remember Rule #6.
    (#15 of the 100 Blog Posting Challenge)

    Wednesday, March 18, 2009

    The Hero Dog - It's About Taking the Time to Have Someone's Back



    I know that it's so much easier to think about helping others when you have some extra. Be it time or money. It's normal. First let me get myself set up and then my house will be in order and THEN I'll have some "extra" for those around me. And I really want to clarify that I am not making anyone wrong for thinking this way. But since very little is ever black and white in this world, I was struck how sometimes self regard is all but thrown out the window for another especially after re-viewing this video.

    I watched it again yesterday and realized for the first time that this Hero Dog - was "without" in as many ways as the dog struck down. This Hero Dog - was a stray - he wouldn't have been there in the first place if he had a home and owners who cared for him. He was on his own and still found himself risking all for another that he technically had no connection to at least in the way some folks would view it.

    It reminded me of the experiment Malcolm Gladwell referenced in the Tipping Point. In this study, students at a Presbyterian theological seminary were asked to prepare a short talk on a biblical theme, then walk over to a nearby building to present it. “Along the way to the presentation, each student ran into a man slumped in an alley, head down, eyes closed, coughing and groaning. The question was, who would stop and help?” There were three variables measured in the experiment: the reason those students were studying theology in the first place, the topic they’d been asked to prepare, and the time they thought they had to get from one building to the next, to give their talk. Who stopped to help the man in trouble? Most people guess that the students who were entering the ministry to help people would stop . . . or that students who were on their way to speak about the Parable of the Good Samaritan (!) would stop. In fact, the study showed that only thing that mattered was whether the student was in a rush. 90 percent of the students who’d been told they were late ignored the man in trouble and went on their way. Of the group who knew they had time to spare, 63 percent stopped.*

    Now those who didn't stop weren't "bad" or "wrong" in any way. But it is a place to look and get curious. What is it that we are all rushing to? What is it we are all really here for? What does it take to stop and really see what's important?

    Every time we step out our door, every day -we take a risk. And it's so easy to not make it back to the place we started from in the morning, we all know that. Are we only here to walk out the front door and walk back in? I think not.

    Thanks to this video this morning, I found myself in a conversation with a man I probably wouldn't have been in a conversation with under normal circumstances. We were both from different worlds, dare I say different castes (because really who are we kidding - we all know damn well that like it or not, we do seem to have that horrible system here even if we denounce it - we have the tendency to stay "within" our types. Be it race, ethnicity, gender, financial, or age. )

    He started to lose his balance on the subway and I went to grab his over sized jacket to steady him from falling. Now I like to think that I would have done this regardless of this video and yet who knows! We both nervously laughed afterward and then I told him how I had just watched this video this morning and thought to myself, I think I'm being trumped by a doggie. And I don't like that! Stopping him from falling seemed to fall way short of what I had just witnessed a little dog do. We both spoke about how brave this dog was and how we both were unsure if we would have had the courage to have done it ourselves. He said he would look for the clip on You Tube when he got home later. And I swear every one around us was going to as well! We had a bit of a captive audience, these two people with nothing seemingly in common. It was a good subway ride! Not only for me and him but for everyone around us!

    Yes, a dog is teaching me. And that's fine by me. I'm listening.

    PS Keep in mind he isn't using his teeth - he is using his two front paws to drag him with.

    (* from the Tipping Point) (#14 of 100 Blog Postings in 100 Day's Challenge)