Tag Archives: big dreams

On Being the Woman You Want Her to Become

Be the change you wish to see in the world. -Mahatma Ghandi

Be the woman you want her to become. During a conversation recently with a friend about girl empowerment I shared what had been bothering me for a while,

“Did you ever notice that we invest so much time in ensuring our daughters pursue their dreams while most of us ignore our own or relegate our truest dreams to the back burner?”

She had noticed the same thing.

“What message does that send our girls and our boys about the importance of our desires and theirs too?”

If you ask any parent (or child), they will confirm that it is what we model in action that sends the most powerful message to young people. Pursuing your dreams wholeheartedly isn’t selfish but is honoring what you are designed to give to the world. It is speaking the truth in action that your life and time deserve the same level of attention and care as each member of your family. What I have also noticed is that as children get older, they express significant pride in their parent’s professional accomplishments and impact on the world.

Take up space in your own life for the world’s sake and to give the girls and boys that are watching permission to do the same.

Reclaim Your Dreams Workbook is available on Amazon.

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Be the Woman You Want Her to Become

Be the change you wish to see in the world. -Mahatma Ghandi

shutterstock_33451507Be the woman you want her to become. During a conversation recently with a friend about girl empowerment I shared what had been bothering me for a while,

“Did you ever notice that we invest so much time in ensuring our daughters pursue their dreams while most of us ignore our own or relegate our truest dreams to the back burner?”

She had noticed the same thing.

“What message does that send our girls and our boys about the importance of our desires and theirs too?”

If you ask any parent (or child), they will confirm that it is what we model in action that sends the most powerful message to young people Pursuing your dreams wholeheartedly isn’t selfish but is honoring Life and what you are designed to give to the world. It is speaking the truth in action that your life and time deserve the same level of attention and care as each member of your family.

What I have also noticed is that as children get older, they express significant pride in their parent’s professional accomplishments and impact on the world.

Take up space in your own life for the world’s sake and to give the girls and boys that are watching permission to do the same. 

Join us for FREE practical tips on {re}claiming your dreams for busy women and girls

 

Why You Should Do It Badly

 

“If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.” C.K. Chesterton
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Recently, a psychologist who I deeply respect sent me an email regarding my book for teens, Take 5 for Your Dreams. Here’s an excerpt:

“I was nearly in tears reading your beautiful book…Somehow you were able to take such huge concepts and bring them into focus for moms and teens in a way that was just beautiful – I love the graphics too!”

OMGosh, are you kidding me?! I respect her work with women and teens and was humbled by how clearly she captured the intent and essence of the book. She also passed the book onto a few friends who run mother-daughter book clubs. Wow. Really? That’s quite an endorsement.

But, in addition to taking in all of her juicy, feel-good encouragements, I felt a little embarrassed that she read my book…and had to resist the urge to enumerate the major flaws and inadequacies of the book in my reply. Not out of insecurity, but because objectively Take 5 could be a whole lot better and a part of me wanted her to know that I knew that.

But I did talk myself out it…that would not serve a useful purpose. As imperfect as it is, Take 5 has also impacted thousands in a positive way. Besides, despite its flaws, I did it – I published a book about a topic that matters deeply to me, all while raising two kids and running a profitable consultancy business. The process was pretty darn messy, but also incredibly rewarding. 

The moral of the story is do something that is so important to you that it is worth doing badly. Please don’t wait until you’re ready. Don’t let perfect get in the way of making your difference in the world and living a happier life. Don’t wait for the perfect timing because we all know when that will be. Most importantly, whatever you do, don’t wait for permission to do that thing you want to do.

Other than newborns and nature, I have never seen any flawless work released into the world. Start today. Do something that it is so important to you that it is worth doing badly.

Love, Paula

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One Reason You Don’t Have Clarity on Your Goals

 

CreativeCommons: BRTeaA firm has been helping me with a new product that I am working on. They are incredible in many ways…but completion is taking much longer than expected. Much, much longer. When they shot a few product photos for me, I realized what the problem was.

They never asked me what I wanted. 

Rather than taking the time (in this case just a few minutes) to ask me a few questions to understand what I needed and wanted, they did what was standard..defaulted to what they usually do.

Hmmmm…. Sounds familiar. I don’t know about you, but I still do this sometimes in my own life. Although understanding what you or I want our lives to be about is a bit more complicated than a photo shoot, the concept is the same. Often we go through our days without taking the time to step back and ask ourselves the big questions.

People – especially busy people – don’t have clarity on their life direction because they haven’t taken the time to ask themselves what matters most, what they really want their life to be about, and then made decisions based on that.

The moral of the story, if you want clarity about your dreams, start by taking the time to intentionally asking yourself what YOU really want. Not what is expected of you or others think you should do or is appropriate for your age or prestigious or easy…but what you really want. And then, act accordingly.


Take 5

If you don’t have clarity on your dreams, here’s a good place to start. Today, take a few minutes to brainstorm a list of what really matters to you….people, issues, causes, and values. Let me know what you came up with in the comments.


If you want an approachable way to ask yourself the big questions, here is a self-reflection road map to help you intentionally reclaim your dreams (and your life), check out the Reclaim Your Dreams Workbook for Busy Women available on Amazon.

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How to Rock Your Life

“When you make a decision the universe conspires to make it happen.” -Emerson.
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Put yourself out there even a little and you may become a rock star …sometimes literally.

Yesterday this popped up in my feed and it made my day.

Two of the singers in this folk/country rock band are Reclaim Your Dreams workshop participants.) Nicole, third from the left, came to a workshop to explore her dreams and design her next move. Nicole is a polymath so her interests and skills were varied from intellectual to creative….always so hard to choose. Almost as an afterthought she shared during one “no limits” exercise that she had jotted down how she would love to sing more publicly …never performed but she sang for us when we asked.

Boy. Did she have chops. The weekly assignment for group was to set up a date to be the person living one of your dreams…An aspiring writer might go to a cafe and write for an hour. Someone considering starting a biz might brainstorm ideas. So why wouldn’t a rockstar sing?!

I connected Nicole with the talented Teresa who was the lead singer for Suppertime, a Reclaimer and a polymath too…and guess what? Teresa’s band happened to be looking for another singer. A few jam sessions later and …here they are.

Follow your heart’s desire, be honest about who you are – even a little if you are scared and “coincidences” like this will happen. Rock your Life.

#‎reclaimyourdreams‬ ‪#‎reclaimyourlife‬

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Suffering, Beauty, and the Dump

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I was so taken by the majesty of nature when I arrived at the dog park today.

I shot this photo but I wasn’t sure if I would share it.

It was early morning and I was up and out by six am.

10 minutes earlier I had been buying a Venti at Starbucks. Since the rest of my Saturday would be full of work and kids’ activities, I decided to grab a cup of coffee to take with me in the hopes of creating an atypical, slower-paced, meditative walking space.

As I was heading out of Starbucks, I noticed the grief-stricken face of a woman on the cover of the New York Times—I couldn’t pass her by. The mother’s daughter had been killed in a terrorist attack and a photographer shot the photo as she bent over her daughter’s coffin.

I took her suffering to the park with me (as I often do).

Then, when I arrived, Nature greeted me with this gift and the anguish and beauty were existing together.

(Until my phone rang.)

My daughter called to be sure I would be back in time to bring her to the dump to sell raffle tickets for her basketball team.

Yup, the dump.

And there it is—beauty, suffering and carpools to the dump.

Some days, life in the ‘burbs can feel so trivial in the backdrop of world events.

And hard to resolve in my head and heart.

But, today it all matters.

That mother was still with me as I soaked in the gift of awe-inspiring nature. And the drive to the the dump was meaningful in all its ordinariness because talking with my daughter is sacred.

I am taking it all in. Being fully in it.

Every bit of it literally exists in my cells.

Today, I am embracing life.

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How to Start Fresh

Start freshI received a thank you note from an early adopter of the Reclaim Your Dreams movement.  Here is part of what she said,

Your enthusiasm, encouragement, and ideas have helped me in setting out on my new adventure…Often when I am strategizing about my new gig, I remind myself that I can start fresh… It was your suggestion to step back and consider what I would want to do if there were no constraints… I am not there yet, but I know this is a stepping stone. I’ve never let myself take the long view of my career. Scary, but so good.

Sometimes, we forget that we can start fresh – pursue a bold dream, scratch one book idea and start another, launch a brand new company, commit to a project that we believe in, make something right when we mess up, build new and deep friendships, create a new family of choice. But we can. It is a choice. It may not be easy, what’s your alternative? Beginning anew starts the moment we decide it does.

No matter where you are in your journey, a new beginning is just a question away. Start by listening to yourself – consider what it is you would love to do without constraints. You may be surprised at how clear your answer is.

 

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Where to Start When You’ve Lost Touch with Your Dreams

 

woman thinking boat shutterstock“I will start by letting you know that I am so out of touch with what I really want that I have to ask my husband what I like.”

That’s how Shannon an independent, put-together and highly successful 50-something business executive introduced herself during a recent Reclaim Your Dreams program.

Although I haven’t ever heard it put in this jarring way before, her sentiment of feeling disconnected from her personal desires and dreams is a reoccurring theme with many of the women that I have met and worked with over the last six months.

Shannon has impressive credentials – an advanced degree in math (way before females in STEM were cool) and a current executive role in the software sector of the technology industry.

The problem was – it wasn’t her impressive. The hours were long, the environment soul sucking, and here is the part that matters most – she lacked passion for the work. Conscientious and skilled at execution, Shannon did her job well even though it wasn’t meaningful to her.

After too many years of staying in line, she was filled with painful regret and felt out of touch with her heart’s desires. Or so she thought.

As it turned out, her boldest dreams didn’t require major excavation – what lit her up was just a few questions away. All Shannon needed to do was give herself time and permission to….dream….without constraints.

She’s not quitting her day job – yet. But after just a few short weeks, she walked into the last workshop looking lighter and oozing with creativity. She’s started her first gourmet chef class and has bold, ambitious plans for taking action on her dreams to fill the world with ascetic beauty through plants and food.

Now it’s your turn. If you are feeling out of touch with your dreams and truest desires, start by asking yourself the big questions.

And by start, I mean take 5 minutes right now, grab a pen and paper. With zero filter or constraints and no requirement to share with anyone, brainstorm your answers to the following:

With no limits, indulge your dreams. For these next five minutes, don’t worry about obstacles like money or time or your age or any other boundary. For just these few minutes, don’t consider what’s prestigious or practical or doable. 

If you could do anything at all, what would be your biggest, boldest most fulfilling dreams or desires?

Ready go. For just five minutes, write down as many as come to mind. No filtering. No concerns about the how.

There will be plenty of time to get practical, I promise, but when you begin by giving yourself the freedom to dream, you will begin to reconnect with what really matters to you. Share in the comments one of your dreams – I’d love to hear and it will encourage other women to do the same!

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