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Posts Tagged ‘women’

 

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Well here we are – it’s 2013 and I although I haven’t written on my blog in over a year, it seems that somehow the amazing world wide web has continued to bring people to my site.  As I received my blog stats via email, I started to reflect on the past – when I started this blog, why I started it, and why I stopped writing.

I think it was a mix of things… I got busy (coaching)… I got very busy (moved, got engaged)… and then I got even more busy (work, travel, wedding planning).  In fact, being busy is the exact reason I have for stopping most things in my life that I probably should keep doing.  I’m not saying that writing a blog should continue forever,  but there was something very important and perhaps cathartic in expressing my thoughts, feelings and ideas.  Maybe it was simply creating something that I could reread, or getting thoughts out that I had pushed away in the process of being productive.  but I think that more likely, it was taking a moment for myself- to leave the outside world for just a moment, and create a little world by myself in a small cafe.

I’ve tried to fill the gap with things like yoga, running and lazy days watching Madmen, but in some ways these relaxing endeavors have taken a life of their own and have become sweat sessions at Bikrams Yoga, half marathon training, and a little too much online shopping to find outfits like Betty and Joan.  It’s funny how “productive” these little moments for myself have become!

So here find myself in another cafe being “unproductive”… and it feels awesome!  As I sip on my americano, and watch the misty rain drizzle on the window, I can’t help but reflect on this past year of successes, and announcements, triumphs and tears.  One thing is very clear- it was an awesome year!  It wasn’t perfect, but I grew and I changed.  And to be honest, it’s taken me till Jan.1, 2013 to really appreciate and think about that.

My resolution next year is to take all of my goals and ambitions and plans and relationships, and find ways to create moments to reflect on and appreciate what is happening with them right then.  I’m not sure exactly how this will change any of the outcomes, and maybe it won’t… but I do think that in the moments of craziness and busyness, if I deliberately take time to reflect, I will be reminded to stop, breathe, and notice that there is goodness and beauty in all of it.  The wins and the losses.  Because at the end of the day, it’s all about learning and growing.

 

I’ll leave you with an amazing little 5 step program! A daily resolution of sorts 🙂

 

The Five Reiki Principles

BY DR.MIKAO USUI

 

I – Just for today, I will not be angry.

Anger at others or oneself or at the whole world, creates serious blockages in one’s energy. It is the most complex inner enemy.

Letting go of anger, brings Peace into the Mind.

 

II – Just for today, I will not worry.

 

While anger deals with past and present events, worry deals with future ones. Although worry is not always a negative phenomena, endless worries may fill one’s head, and each one bores a small hole in one’s body and soul.

Letting go of worry, brings healing into the Body.

 

III – Just for today, I will be grateful.

Be grateful from your hart inward. Inner intention is the important element in this principle. Simple things as thanks, forgiveness, smile, good words, gratitude can improve others life and make them happy.

Being thankful brings Joy into the Spirit.

 

IV – Just for today, I will do my work honestly.

Support yourself and your family respectably, without harming others. Earn a respectable living, live a life of honor.

Working Honestly brings Abundance into the Soul.

 

V- Just for today, I will be kind to every living thing.

Honor your parents, honor your teachers, honor your elders.

Being Kind brings Love into the Will.

 

Happy New Years and all the best in 2013 – something tells me that this year is going to be a special one…Unknown-1

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So I was in Edmonton this past week and it was awesome.  It’s really true that home is where the heart is.  I mean, I love the ocean, the mountains, the city, the sand… Edmonton has none of this but for some reason it felt right.  Some of my best friends, my family, and good ol’ wholesome values live in Edmonton, and as I grow wiser (note that I didn’t say older 😉 ! ), I see how important these things are to me.

I spent some major time with a couple of my best friends, who are married with kids.  Their perspective is really unique to me because almost all of my friends in Vancouver and LA are single, and spending almost all of their time building their careers and lives and looking for someone who fits into the picture.  As we grow older, we have become fiercely independent, exceptionally choosy, and are constantly seeking “the best”.  And yet we are looking for romance, for the total connection with another person, for that butterfly feeling that lasts all the time and a relationship without compromise.  Because if it isn’t all perfect, it’s not “meant to be”.  So why am I talking about this?  Well, it became painfully clear to me that this is not the way a relationship works.  In fact, this isn’t the way life works!  And for some of you, me making that statement is super obvious and not that impactful.  You know this.  Maybe because you have seen it in your parents or perhaps because you are in or have been in a long term relationship that has worked, or maybe you apply this to your career already.

So my friends were really honest and real about what they think it takes.  Which challenged some of my beliefs, including that a relationship should be based upon a feeling.  Their side is that it should be based upon a choice.  I started to think about how this applies to the rest of my life.  In volleyball, I have a goal – to be a Gold medallist.  So from there, I go backwards, figuring out the steps that it will take to make this happen.  Train hard, train smart, eat well, get the best coach and partner etc. etc. etc.  When there are days (and there are many!) that I don’t want to get up and put my running shoes on, and where I want to stay out late and have drinks with friends, it’s my commitment to my goals, and not honouring how I feel in that moment, that keeps me on track.  Is it a sacrifice?  Maybe, in the moment it seems like it.  But long term it’s not a sacrifice at all because my goals and my plans are far more important to me than sleeping in or getting a little tipsy.  With experience I have figured this out and I think it’s the reason that I am truly happy right now – my life and choices are aligned with my goals and values and I am committed to them.

The truth is that commitment hasn’t ever been my strong suit.  Passion and purpose are, but without commitment I’ve noticed they are simply pipe dreams.  I had an amazing conversation with my mom and her one biggest piece of advice for me with volleyball was to choose a team, choose a plan and just go with it.  Win or lose, know that I did everything I felt I needed to do with the information that I had, rather than thinking that something better was around the corner, or that there was a “secret or advantage” that was out there somewhere.  Because it doesn’t work that way.  There are a lot of ways to accomplish this dream- not just an elusive “best” way, and the key is to focus on whichever one I choose and commit to it.

Which brings me back to relationships (ha, I’m sure you saw this metaphor coming!).  If I actually looked down the road at what I wanted and went back from there, rather than starting from a feeling, would my choices align and would this all seem simpler and more fulfilling?  So let’s say (and this is just an example for the record!) I want a husband, 2.5 kids, a white picket fence and a minivan in the suburbs.  If that is the vision, then who would I choose?  Probably someone on the same journey, with values and goals that align with this.  Because no matter how cute and funny and exciting a person is, that goes straight out the window if I have to spend my life convincing them to work harder to afford those things, or to move out of the city, or to commit to me.  If I looked at a person to see how they aligned with where I wanted to go, then looked to see if we had chemistry/attraction etc, then it would be clear if it was something worth investing in.  I certainly have had feelings about someone who is on the opposite path and the feelings got in the way of what I knew I wanted. These guys were my friday night beer or my saturday morning sleep in when I should have been training.  I wanted it, but did I really? To take this back to sport, I was sitting in front of the TV watching the 2012 Olympics and knowing I could have gone for it and didn’t, would I feel like staying home and resting  instead of going out with friends was a sacrifice or would I think that choosing not to train was the actual sacrifice?  It’s all a matter of perspective.

So my final answer is this.  Life is a game of choice.  Chocolate or Vanilla, choose.  There is no right choice, no wrong choice, no best and no worst… just choice. Fulfillment comes with aligning choices with your vision and goals.

So I choose the game of vanilla.  I commit to vanilla – even though chocolate will keep showing up, looking all creamy and exciting and different… As long as my vision is aligned with vanilla, I will keep choosing vanilla, honouring my commitment to vanilla, and keep finding ways to remember how much I love vanilla. And I mean, if you think about it, even if I started one day eating chocolate, wouldn’t vanilla start to seem creamy and exciting and different anyways?

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Okay, so I rarely write 2 blogs in a weekend… or even in a week but I feel inspired 🙂  Maybe it’s the Easter chocolate I’m not supposed to be eating!

I was talking to a good friend on mine and he was telling me all about his latest girl.  They dated under the pretense that it was casual, that they were just having fun and that they would date other people, and a few months later, she changed her tune… she wanted something more and had fallen in love with him.  His frustration?  This has happened before- many times before. So I got to thinking about some of my recent situations…

I think I am a 21st century woman – not only because I am clearly living in this era, but I think that I represent how far women have come.  I am lucky enough to be able to play a sport for a living, to do what I dream, to be 30 years old and not pressured to be married or have kids (well, except for the odd comment from my grandma!).  I can be in a relationship, or casually date without judgement.  I can go out without any makeup on, never own a dress, and learn to fix my own tire.  And the next day I can wear a lacy red push up bra and cry during a cheesy romantic comedy.  To me, that is what the women’s movement is all about – choice and freedom to be.

With dating, if feels to me like we are now expected to take a big part of us – our femininity and our emotional needs and put it to the side . So that no matter what we want deep down we are just as okay with a hook up as we are with a relationship.  And we are okay with however a guy chooses to pursue us – text, emails every 2 weeks… whatever.  And I want to know, since when did our choice, freedom and power come from just being okay with whatever we  get?  Why, as my brother so eloquently puts it, can’t we just let a guy “court” us?  It’s a part of the process that we are ignoring and if we were getting results, then I’d say stick to what is working, but I don’t think we are…

A lot has changed with dating, especially in the last 5 years – some that I’ve noticed are:

1.  Women no longer get asked out-  they get texted, IM’d, facebook messaged, pof/lavalife emailed.

2.  There is no date planning.  It’s last minute, it’s super casual and the invite often comes late at night.  I swear its a booty call but I don’t know how that works… is there a certain time that signals a booty call like my dad’s 10:00 no phone call rule?

3.  Dates are usually preceded with a bunch of googling.  And if we don’t find them via google, they are not to be trusted 😉

4.  We no longer date people that we know, as there are so many more options out there, so we are out with people who we have no information or history about.  Like, for example, the guy I dated from San Diego who had two ex wives by age 27 and slept with two guns under his pillow- solid…

5.  The bill is split, the phone calls are split, the first move is split.  And I am constantly confused… about what to do.  All the time.

6. Friends with benefits has become the starting point to a relationship.

Here’s the thing…  Regardless of the type of relationship people are looking for, I truly believe that there is a natural energy exchange between men and women that isn’t being met .  It’s the instinctual hunt.  It’s how we are wired.  This is not to say that women aren’t equal, just because we are being pursued.  In fact, to put so much emphasis on the supposed lack of power that  happens when somebody opens a door or foots a bill  is such a misinterpretation of what power and freedom are.  My sister, who is such an amazing and strong person, has debated this point with me by saying that she can open her own door – and she can!  We all can!  But I can also paint my own nails and this fact doesn’t stop me from getting a manicure.    The thing is that she is great at painting nails and I appreciate and respect that.  And she respects that I am willing to invest in having polished nails. I know that this metaphor is obviously pushing it a bit, but by using the same logic for dating, then both parties are getting their needs met right?

And you know, it’s not to say that we will never pay for a date, or give our guy a gift or be the outer spoon once in awhile 😉 (well,  maybe not that!) , but to not allow a person to give to us  seems kind of like we are taking one of our choices away… and isn’t that the opposite of womens liberation?

And maybe I’m too far the other way, I’ll admit that, but I think that if a guy wants my attention and wants to be with me, it will be obvious.  He’ll call, he’ll plan dates, he’ll invest in a date with his time, his attention, his money, his blackberry away in his pocket – At the end of the day, I want my relationship to be like that and I don’t trust that if it doesn’t start that way it will end up that way.

I keep trying to convince all of my friends to do this, but they are resistant.  I’m not sure why but I kind of think it’s because women think that if they have these expectations and “rules” then guys won’t be interested and they’ll end up alone.  Yes, some guys will peace out.  Actually, I think most will. But I think they are the same guys that will peace out a month later, after you are emotionally and physically involved and man, is it harder at that point!    Why not just let them weed themselves out at the beginning when it doesn’t matter to you?

And guys, correct me if I’m wrong – won’t you do all of these things for a girl that you are crazy about?  And the others- not so much, right?   It’s obvious when we look at the information – how a person communicates with you, how often, what they say they want, what they ask from you.  All the information is there, and we just need to listen, and not to waste our time hoping that it turns into something different than what it started as.  It’s hard to change expectations mid-path, which is what so many girls do to guys.  They say they are fine with casual, fine with infrequent, and then what happens 3 months down the road?  I think we all know!

Anyways, I digress 🙂  Thanks for reading – and please comment.  I’m curious about how everyone else feels- pretty sure my friends have some insightful ideas and thoughts about my perspective 😉

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