Welcome to This Week's 5
... home of your Friday opportunity to quickly connect and reflect on the different ways that life lights us up. Sometimes inspiring, sometimes informational, but always fun, I'm inviting you to take a moment, pause over a special topic, and consider something new. Join the conversation on Instagram, and share your own perspective and thoughts.
5 Inspiring and Uplifting Movie Moments
The success of Last Week's 5 has encouraged me to think more about inspiration. I found myself sharing a favorite inspirational movie quote with a friend this week, and it prompted me to take a little time and review some of my favorite movie scenes. And, that's where this post was born.
Narrowing this list down to five was not easy. In fact, there may be future lists along this same line because there are so many memorable moments that could be included.
Here's where we begin.
1. Groundhog Day - Breathing in the moment transformation begins.
There is a very short scene in which Bill Murray's character, Phil, is sitting in a diner reading. He hears Mozart’s Sonata No. 16 playing in the diner. He looks up, smiles, looks around the coffee shop, and breathes in the moment. If
you've see the movie before, you know this is the beginning of his transformation. In fact, the next scene is his first visit to a local piano teacher seeking lessons. No words are spoken in this scene, but the combination of Phil's serene demeanor and the beautiful music produces a moment of sheer joy and hopefulness.
2. It's a Wonderful Life - The raw emotion of pure gratitude.
As you might have guessed, I've chosen part of the closing scene of this iconic movie. However, I'm not going to focus on the singing of Auld Lang Syne, Clarence getting his wings, or some of the other moments that often are pointed out. I relish the moment the telegram from Sam Wainwright is read advancing $25,000 to George Bailey. George and Mary exchange a look that is so heart-warming and memorable. I especially enjoyed this because it is part of a long procession of townspeople coming to honor and help George. The viewer knows that Mary had started this movement. In the earlier scene she was faced with great uncertainty. She had no idea what had led her husband to lash out at the family. But she took a breath, straightened her shoulders, and began to reach out for help. Take a look at this scene. The looks of pure gratitude that you will see on the face of actress Donna Reed in her portrayal of Mary will make your day.
3. The Pursuit of Happyness - Hold on, believe, keep moving forward.
This movie is full of memorable scenes -- moments where Will Smith beautifully portrays Chris Gardner's journey from homeless father and unpaid intern to newly selected Dean Witter broker. One of the moments that has remained with me is when Chris Gardner and his son attend a San Francisco 49ers game. As they share the corporate box with a prospective client, Chris is told that he is not going to get the firm's business. He likely felt as though he had taken a punch to the gut. But in that moment, like Mary Bailey above, he squares his shoulders, takes a breath, and offers his son a positive and encouraging smile. (How Chris meets this corporate connection and gets invited to attend the game with them is quite an interesting series of events.) He keeps moving forward in the face of great adversity.
4. You've Got Mail - A beautiful line that changes lives.
As Kathleen Kelly makes the decision to close her store, she sits down to tea. Her mother's dear friend tells her - "Closing the store is the brave thing to do. You are daring to imagine that you could have a different life." This statement changed my life. As I was going through one of the biggest transitions of my life, wondering if I was doing the right thing, and knowing that I needed to dig deep and find a new level of courage and belief, I felt like she was speaking to me. Kathleen was daring to imagine that she could have a different life. And, so was I. Thank you, Nora Ephron -- the fabulous and talented writer behind this movie.
5. Erin Brockovich - A beautiful financial moment set to music.
This is another movie filled with many inspirational moments. As I round out this list, I thought of the closing scenes of Erin Brockovich. A woman, similar to Chris Gardner, is unemployed and struggling at the beginning of the movie, travels this journey, and is rewarded in the end. And, I appreciated that. This is a serious movie and documents a tragic situation of the families of Hinkley. It's a movie about litigation, class action suits, environmental toxins, and more. But, the movie wraps up in a rather light-hearted way. Erin temporarily believes she is going to receive a bonus check for less than she proposed, but in the end she is given a check for 2 million dollars -- and the music of Sheryl Crow plays us out. Don't you love perfectly placed music in a movie?
I'd love to hear about some of your favorite memorable moments. Join the conversation on Instagram.
5 Inspiring and Life Changing
Rumi was a 13th Century Persian poet, theologian, and Sufi mystic. His full name in Persian was Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī. I don't claim to be well versed in the life of Rumi or his influence over centuries of civilizations. But, I do know that translations and interpretations of his work are seen around the world. There is much to be said and studied about his life's work and legacy. This Week's 5 post is a simple look at 5 of my favorite Rumi quotes, how they impact me, and how I often use the wisdom and teaching of Rumi with my clients.
1. What you seek is seeking you.
In my work as a life coach, the majority of my clients are seeking something - a new job, a more successful business, greater self confidence, life balance, and more. As I begin my work with a new client, a cornerstone of our work together is to find peace right where she is even as she seeks this something new. We work through a couple of specific processes to reach that place of peace -- some simple and some more complex. You can pause on this Rumi quote to begin to find your place of peace.
If you imagine that the object of your desire is also seeking you, that there is a another realm at work bringing the outcome closer to you, do you feel yourself relax into a state of calm? Does this thought encourage you to release your grip on the outcome, and feel more patient and calm? A few moments of peace as you reflect on this quote can be a valuable part of your personal development journey.
Without finding this peace, the road toward that something new will be littered with obstacles, struggle, and self-doubt. Find peace and the road becomes more smooth with delightful discoveries and growth opportunities along the way.
2. Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I will meet you there.
There is so much happening in the world that we can label as wrong and divisive. I often label it that way, too. It is a daily practice to relinquish my need or desire to do this. In that practice, I turn to this beautiful quote. Even if you have people in your life who you believe are wrong in their stance on current issues, and you have been judging and labeling, you can keep this in mind. There is a place in our Universe where none of these earthly conflicts matter. See yourself there with others in this field as you choose to seek the light.
3. Respond to every call that excites your spirit.
In this beautiful translation of Rumi's words, we are being reminded to become aware, to listen to what our spirit is calling us to do. This can be simple decisions like choosing a meal to larger undertakings like choosing a career path. As my mentor, teacher and healer, Robin Hallett taught me many years ago, place your hand on your heart and ask --- what do I want? If you've lived in service to others, taking care of their needs, and have forgotten how to listen to your own heart, this may seem foreign. Take this moment and ask yourself -- what do I want? Or, to use Rumi's words - what excites my spirit?
As I met with a client this week, we decided that she will ask this question of herself each morning as she begins to plan her work for the day. Making sure that the majority of her time is spent on tasks that excite her spirit can lead to a day spent in joy, passion, and purpose. (Watch for my upcoming post on 5 Ways to Align Your To Do List with Joy and Purpose.)
4. There is a voice that doesn't use words. Listen.
This is a beautiful quote that builds on #3 above. I find two messages from this quote. One message is an urging to seek silence and listen. Whether I choose a specific meditation practice, carve out time to "sit for ideas" or simply remain open to other moments when inspiration strikes, my practice is to intentionally be in silence so that I can receive - messages, inspiration, and ideas.
The second message for me is to acknowledge that the inspiration and ideas I have received so far have not been in a voice that says words to me. I often hear people recount how, in a moment of silence and reflection, they hear a voice with a clear message. Here's how it works for me. I have a recurring thought, a moment of clarity about my next steps, a vision of where I am headed, or a deep soulful resonance that I am on the right track. Indeed - the "voice" that speaks to me doesn't use words. And, I rather like it that way.
5. The Universe is not outside of you. Look inside yourself; everything that you want, you already are.
This quote might be a little deep for This Week's 5 - Friday's fun and informative look at life. But, I can't not include it in my 5 favorite Rumi quotes. So, let's ponder this for a moment.
Do you believe life is about allowing the real, vibrant and beautiful soul that is you to shine, and to share that brilliant light?
I DO. And, I believe this quote embodies that sentiment beautifully. As I said to a client early on in my coaching days, you are taking steps to allow who you really are to shine through.
This 5th and final quote seems like the perfect segue to additional writings on the power of the inner Universe and the delightful results that come from our inner work. This is the work that is required for us to live the life that we truly desire. Stay tuned.
Until next Friday, may you take the steps to allow who you really are to shine through.
5 Instagram Accounts
to Check Out Today
I'm an Instagram user and fan. I love scrolling through and being inspired by beautiful photos and vivid colors. I am drawn in by the patterns and images of a beautifully designed brand. And, I love seeing and meeting people who are doing amazing work in this world.
There are millions of accounts to scroll through, follow, like and engage with -- from corporate favorites (@postit and @seejanework) to travel destinations (@visit_coronado and @nantucketphotos) and so much more. I am beginning to carefully curate a group of accounts that I follow.
If you enjoy Instagram in the way that I do, I invite you to check out these 5 particularly noteworthy accounts.
Who doesn't love seeing an adorable Teddy Bear in yoga poses? Cute as can be, Teddy's mission is to help kids around the world lead healthier, more mindful lives through yoga and meditation practice. You can even purchase your own Meddy Teddy on his website.
Why I'm drawn to this account. Adorable, for sure. But this IG account is so much more. Meddy Teddy -- who is pictured alone or with friends -- does all sorts of yoga poses. And, he does them in beautiful locations. You will see him on the beach, near a tree, in the park, at the Getty, visiting an elementary school -- I love that. You will also see him sporting awesome yoga leggings. And, Meddy Teddy's captions perfectly capture the moment, the mindfulness, and the practice. Called a fluffy yogi by Fitness magazine, you will quickly fall in love with this little guy who has a big message for us all.
One loveable hashtag: #littleandbrave
This IG account features daily handwritten inspirational quotes, three words at a time. Delightful, simple and profound, as you visit the page, you will be encouraged to pause and really consider what has been written and shared. This is such a cool concept. The words are center stage, but the lettering, the backgrounds and the photography definitely contribute to the appeal of this IG account.
Why I'm drawn to this account. I love inspirational messages - the shorter the better. I can count on the posts from 3words to be consistently and dependably reflective. Interaction and engagement are encouraged. 3words regularly asks visitors to submit their 3 word suggestions so they can be featured in a future post. I did that when I first found the account, and my words were hand-lettered on "the board" a few weeks later. Very cool, (We Are One, pictured below.)
A featured hashtag: #threewordsareenough
Little Blue Canoe is a beautiful IG account that showcases a balance of Canadian imagery and products from artisans, craftspeople and designers. Created by Kelly, who describes her work on her website in this way: "My passion is in making people feel appreciated, celebrating their milestones and acknowledging their achievements. As I began to explore the different avenues in which I could express this sentiment, I realized that I had to look no further than my own backyard." I think Kelly's personality and her passion for this project shine through in her IG posts.
Why I'm drawn to this account. Little Blue Canoe has a beautiful and consistent brand presence. The blue and red styling is peaceful and brilliant. (Who doesn't love red Converse tennies? And canoe-shaped cookies?) Visit this account and you will see breath-taking views of Canada, cool products available on the Little Blue Canoe website, travel and on-location photographs, and fun and interesting people. It simply feels like a beautiful gathering of all things in life to appreciate and love.
A featured hashtag: #canadaloved
From gorgeous sunsets and snowy roads to a chocolate lab puppy and the Chicago skyline. Bouquets of flowers, road trips, scrumptious looking meals and snacks, a nautical theme welcome mat, a rise and shine mug, and a co-pilot named Theo. Sending Happy Vibes is a charming and likeable IG account filled with hundreds of things to admire, and a few good vibe messages along the way. It is created by Patty who is dedicated to passing along everything happy and fun she sees in the world.
Why I'm drawn to this account. Sending Happy Vibes is a great collection of beautiful everyday sights and unique and memorable moments. I love being able to see all the different things that Patty notices and records for this IG account. It's just plain fun to peruse and that's why I love Instagram so much.
One happy vibe hashtag: #kindnessmatters
Ryan Foland is a talented communications strategist. I dig his message and teachings, and am just getting familiar with his personal branding material. In addition to images of his life (speaking, traveling, radio interviews, etc. which I love), Ryan's IG account is highlighted by daily hand-drawn stick figure illustrations. These illustrations convey significant messages -- reminders about public speaking, communicating, and living life in a fuller and more robust way. Sometimes they include words he has heard during his interactions with others, and sometimes they are all Ryan. He draws the connection to his own messages and teachings - straightforward yet powerful messages like, "Become a better speaker... by speaking more".
Why I'm drawn to this account. I love the combination of the illustrations and the messages they carry. As I looked closer, I appreciated his captions with the back story of the message and sometimes, the creation of the illustration. I loved his depiction of Perspective is Everything (seen below) and was further amused when I read that he was on a sailboat and created this particular piece with a Sharpie on white Duct Tape.
One fun hashtag from Ryan's sister: #hashtaggedout
Until next Friday, enjoy your time on Instagram and connect with me there.
As you get ready for your holiday weekend, you may experience some mixed emotions. Perhaps, you are making great progress in your business or you're in the middle of a big project that you don't want to walk away from.
Do you have holiday travel ahead of you? Are there parties and get-togethers, house guests, or children to keep busy? Or, are you beginning a quiet weekend to do exactly as you please?
No matter what your weekend looks like, you may find yourself wondering how to keep moving toward your goals within the flurry of activity and expected "downtime". You may be even thinking about how you can take the extra time of the holiday weekend and parcel out some focused time for your business or your big project. In fact, if you are working full-time and have a
5 Ways to Keep Moving Forward Over the Holiday Weekend
side gig you are nurturing, you may see the holiday weekend as a great opportunity to make progress.
Here's a 5-step plan to keep you moving forward.
1. Figure out what's possible.
Take a look at the activities and schedule for the weekend. Does it allow for some time to work on your project or business? Is it important for you to have that time? Or, are you interested in stepping away fully and reveling in this much anticipated weekend of fun and relaxation?
2. Make a plan (together).
Whatever you desire for the weekend, start now by making a non-negotiable plan with yourself and your companions. Consider a Monday morning focus session while others sleep or go out to breakfast. Maybe you like the idea that afternoon naptime for the kids means social media planning for you. Have a conversation with the others to make sure your ideas can be met alongside what they have in mind for the weekend. This will be especially helpful if your partner is concerned that you are bringing work with you on the weekend getaway. If you have a conversation and agree that you will skip the morning zoo outing to spend two hours creating your opt-in sales funnel or editing your book manuscript, but will be taking the kids to the pool in the afternoon, you leave no room for guessing or resentments. Let the kids know about this plan in advance, and you eliminate surprises, disappointments, and battles. Communicate with the other adults in your party, too.
3. Be present.
Now that you have your plan and others are aware, you can relax and you won't feel like you need to multi-task your way through the weekend. Make the most of your time with family and friends. Put your attention on the kids, the conversation, the fireworks, the fun, and put your phone away. Fully soak it in, and know that you are being refreshed by the people, the fresh air, and all the good stuff that goes along with it.
4. Prepare to UNPLUG.
And, speaking of putting the phone away, are you planning to step away from your device over the holiday weekend? Would you like to fully unplug, or even lessen your screen time? Many people are doing that and benefitting from the break. Be intentional and make a plan. Leave your phone behind on at least one outing. Or, put it on silent. Take a social media break or check it only at night. Let clients know you will be away from email and will respond to messages when you return. Communicate that date with them -- set up your out of office message.
5. Finish Friday strong.
Whether you are taking some work with you or are stepping away completely for the weekend, choose at least one task to finish Friday strong. Take a look at your to-do list. Choose something that you can complete. Make that important phone call. Write that blog post. Fix the links on your website. Create and schedule your social media posts for the weekend. Make your to-do list for the day you return and clean off your desk.
With intention, planning, and communication you are ready for a weekend that will support your efforts and your progress.