Stay in Your Lane

When you are concerned about what others will think, or how they may react, you are not in your lane - you are playing small. You are in an anxiety state. Nothing you want comes from being in this state.

I believe there are three lanes in life. My lane.Your lane. God’s/the Universe’s lane. Our growth is to practice staying in our lane. Not giving over to the fear part of our brain (ego/amygdala). Notice. Breathe. Come within. Love self on the journey. Love God/Universe. Love others. The ego wants you to get out of your lane to fix, fight, or control what is not your place to be in.

For this month of October, will you just notice when you are out of your lane? You may be anxious, sad, angry, or frustrated. All of these emotions let you know that you are in your car, driving in someone else's lane...their journey, their destination. Steer back to your lane, and stay in your car, to enjoy creating your most beautiful journey and destination. What you focus on during your drive will create the type of journey you have. One of joy, peace, and wonder - or one of fear, dissatisfaction, and defensiveness.

Fix your mind on and enjoy what is good right now. Appreciate. Love. Look for the very next exquisite space to dwell in.
Experiencing your most desired route requires that you hold fast to your lane.

Joy to you!


Exquisite Leader. Exquisite Life. 

P.S. - Practice creating your exquisite leadership and life. Join me in October or November for ways to practice staying in your lane! Go to for more information and to register.

Peace, Joy and the Enneagram

Peace. Joy. They go hand in hand. 

Anxiety. Overwhelm. They follow suit. 

So - what brings you peace and joy? What if it is not something you have to go get?

If peace and joy were to live in you at all times, how would you BE in your life?

I have peace and joy, when I notice my whole being. When I allow myself to create from a place of inner joy - I’m in a state of believing that I have all I need. I then act on what most fits me. When I don’t have peace, I am believing that I am lacking something. 

When I go within and still my racing mind - I realize that I create my experiences. My thoughts create my behaviors leading to my reality. My interpretation of myself, others, and situations are in my wheelhouse. When I own my wheelhouse - I am responsible for how I want to be. Anything other than that is acting from victimhood. If I do not have what I want inside of myself - peace, joy, love - that is solely my doing. Period.

The key to making my shift? I chose to wake up to my thoughts and do the opposite of what our culture has taught me. Our culture says that we are enough when we have and do enough. My being enough is not based on what I do! However, I create what I most desire when I am fully aligned with myself - mind, heart, body, and soul. I have had to relearn and trust each area of myself. They all matter equally. 

So now...what does this mean for you? 

Peace and joy are inside of you. You have the answers to life already inside of you. Learn to listen to yourself!  Becoming more aware of your mind, body, and emotional intelligence is your school. Looking outside of your inner knowing will always bring anxiety and frustration.

Learn about you and your wheelhouse. Access tools that bring you a deeper understanding of how you are wired and how to grow using all of your learning centers.

My discovery of the Enneagram, as an excellent source of inner exploration and wisdom, has transformed me and many leaders I know. At its core, the Enneagram helps us to know ourselves and others better, and discover our ego fixations. It highlights our blindspots, encourages our strengths, and shows us our path to wholeness. When practiced, the Enneagram provides a way to integrate the mind, heart, and body centers leading to whole-body decision making, rather than just from our head.

More peace and joy flow through us when: 1) we learn to be fully who we are, 2) notice when we are operating using only part of our learning centers, and 3) we stop trying to obtain peace and joy outside of ourselves. 

Come back home. Come within. Know yourself and appreciate how far you have journeyed. Your way has worked so far. However, you won’t get where you most want to go without deeper self-awareness.

Join me for a one to one or group Enneagram assessment and coaching session. Contact us here for more information.

Self Awareness - the power to create your Exquisite Leadership. Your Exquisite Life.



What If?

Sitting out under the sun on this breezy summer morning, I am taking in my breath, the warm rays, and my thoughts...of efforting to make things, people, and life happen the way I want. Ha! How we all do this just to be happy and safe! But are we peaceful and just being with what is? I am blissfully distracted from sensing the sun on my body, the wind on my skin, the rise of my inhaling lungs, the movement of my hair, the tension in my hand, and the joy, and fear energy running in me. That is, until I notice my thoughts are taking over my present state.

Hmmmm... Breathing. What is here now? Out of my head and back into my body. I am. Just is. Allowing. Still. Connected. Wholeness.

Now I consciously ponder my thoughts:  Independence Day was celebrated this month. What is Independence? I notice that I laugh at this word. The battle that it took us to be “free” as a country. The battle that we have inside ourselves when we argue with what is. Our minds are a battlefield, until we notice and choose. Let go of the tumultuous, incessant, racing mind. Notice. Question. Choose. Be awake to the chatter. Choose again. Breathe. Your breath is always independent of your racing mind, as it freely supports your being. The most immediate way to ease your mind is to be with your breath.

Independence: Freedom from the fearful mind that hijacks joy and peace. To be with what is. To appreciate the now. Accept self and others. To know all is for us - if we choose the opposite of our limiting, defensive mind. 

What if you chose to make Independence a practice in your mind this moment? And the very next moment? I would love to know you on this journey. Share what you are learning. We all learn.

Peace. Joy. Love. 

Exquisite Leader. Exquisite Life. 


Claim Your Life





Not your work.

What are you running after? Is this what brings you the most joy?

Coaching CEOs and their leaders, I find that many have more money than most, lack nothing in this world - accept abundant peace, joy, and rest. They are the best at claiming their work!

All the striving and figuring out - to obtain the next stage of success - takes you away from the present moment of inner connection. Your life within is left behind. I know this to be true of me.

Looking outside of yourself for a fulfilled life is fleeting. If you have achieved greatness on the outside, ignoring your inner wants, you may feel tossed about by a rough sea. Many of us have been conditioned to look outside of ourselves for security and stability.

You are like most of us - a seeker placing your intentions on extrinsic and conditional approval. Would you notice your gaze and return within yourself? Be still. Breathe. Appreciate who you are in this moment. Look deeper inside. Give tender love and acceptance towards yourself. Will you give this seeking one the love that is already within? Reclaim your one and only precious life. You give your inner love away, once you look beyond yourself. This love is not to be earned.

Breathe. Take in your awesomeness!
BE the change the world needs. Love yourself. Then love others.

Love is all around, if you see the one who is love. 💜💜💜

Claiming your life is to be conscious of your moments. If you don’t have joy most of your days - your life and your work are not in alignment. 

Reminder: You have this one precious life. How you live your moments is your choice!

Claim your moments. Make them intentional. Be with what is. To be aware of your full self (feelings, thoughts, body senses) is to practice consciousness. Presence.

Celebrating life - I am passionate for my life, as I remember my six year anniversary this month, when my life almost ended. Placed in a medical coma, I awoke to live my life to the fullest. Waking up out of my daily coma - I am dedicated to living my moments on purpose. Waking leaders from their coma is my calling. Life itself is precious.

How can all of life be a tool to awaken your being?!

Wake up to you.

Exquisite leader. Exquisite Life.

Transformational Leaders Start With Self-Love

Are you present to the miracles all around you? To recognize them is to be alive.

Do you see yourself? How are you a miracle?

To know self, and accept self is to love fully, without condition. Letting go of self-judgment is letting go of your thoughts that say you are not enough. Living in the do more - then you will be o.k. mindset is your unconscious fear and ego in the driver seat of your experience (instead of you).

Conscious self-love listens to your body, mind, heart, and soul. This love knows what a whole yes is in all areas of life.

I am passionate that leaders know this radical self-love. My belief is that many of us have lost our inner connection and a deep sense of self-love to the altar of what others think. We have strived most of our life to be accepted at school, work, and in our relationships. It is what we are taught from a young age - if someone approves or our schoolwork, our clothes, our sports, our work, where we live, how our children behave, etc… we then have value and acceptance. Our culture is driven by external success and accolades. We run this unconscious racket to earn ourself worth. When we are not sourcing our own love as leaders, we become demanding and critical of others meeting our needs.

Wake Up. Don’t automatically believe every thought that comes to your mind, or for that matter, someone else’s! I believe you already know what aligns with you. Choose loving thoughts. Drop those that are unkind. Because until you fill yourself with words and actions that bring joy, peace, and love to you first - you are not truly free to love anyone else. You know yourself better than anyone. Trust your knowing.

When we are unloving to ourselves it is easy to jump to unloving thoughts of others! This is how the ego works. Our work is to notice these thoughts, notice ourselves and then act according to what brings us joy (rather than reacting to fear). Full alignment is our goal. When we awaken to who we are and what aligns with us, we then create optimal results in life.

Loving ourselves is key to the change that this world craves. We cannot get this love from others, especially when they don’t have it to give. No one else can give you the love you most want; your own self-acceptance, self-approval, and care. It is yours to create and be in. We all have this power, and it is ours to own! As leaders, it is our responsibility to teach through modeling how we love and care for ourselves.

Love is in you and through you. Oneness to self (Integrity) creates the space for oneness with others and with the world.

Energy spent seeking love and approval outside of self provides an unstable foundation and, in essence, is fractured love. Radical responsibility to ourselves draws us back to going within, brings ease and flow and, is a whole yes and whole love to self. In this now moment where are you? Looking inside or outside? What are you saying to yourself? Friendly reminder: noticing is the key!

The universe flows in love when we get our hands out of others business. There is my business, your business, and God’s business. When we align our energy with the Universe, we learn to let it be and to appreciate all as is. Energy wholeness is staying in my space and remaining open to all. Inner constriction and defensiveness stop the flow and block oneness to self and with others.

Love is your choice. Many leaders are learning to practice loving and taking great care of themselves. You are not alone.

Create your exquisite, transformational leadership from the inside out.

Exquisite Leader. Exquisite Life.

Photo by: Olesia Bilkei

Noticing Our Thoughts: The Gateway to Joy

Our minds are is filled with 50,000 or more thoughts each day! What we do with each thought, when it arrives, is how we create the moments that determine what we experience in our lives.

How are you CHOOSING to live your days?

If you say you don’t have a choice - that you have to, must or should...or, you are relying on anything outside of yourself to choose (you are at the effect of what is outside of yourself) you are not being the creator of your life. In essence, you are coming from a state of victimhood.

Stepping out of victimhood and into presence and personal responsibility -  into being the creator of your days is essential to living in joy and truly possible!

Learning to be present provides the opportunity for you to choose what is the most nourishing for you...and what you want to believe.

Working on presence is noticing what is in your NOW state. Your breath. Your heartbeat. Your feelings. Your thoughts. Allow, then notice, accept, and breathe.

Being in the now moment makes you available to your full potential. Our mind wants to look ahead or dwell in the past. Our work is to train our mind to notice what is now. Our ego is driven in fear and scans to see what is wrong - what may be wrong - what is not enough. Scanning the past or the future - our ego keeps us hopping!

As we focus on the quiet sound of our breath and learn to become still - we gradually move to a state of appreciation for the ability to sense and see what is with us without effort.

The moment we notice the thoughts stuck in our mind that bring us stress (often the ones we unconsciously ruminate on), we awaken to the power of choosing to let go of that thought and choose another more aligned with what we want to create for ourselves.

The ego does not want to give up so easily on our stressful thinking because it wants to be in control, to defend and keep us safe (even if it actually limits us in the process). So how do we combat our ego - vested in and clinging to our limiting thoughts? We first ask - is this thought the absolute truth? Could it's opposite be true? With these questions alone, we allow curiosity to enter into our thought process. This then brings the expansion of choice and more curiosity. The body begins to relax and creative energy is welcomed.

Try it - when you feel anxious, stressed, angry or sad, breathe deeply 3 times. Notice your thought. Flip it immediately! Is this thought the absolute truth? What is the opposite of this limiting thought? Could this be just as true or truer?

Let me know what comes up for you as you practice this over the next month! I would love to hear what you are choosing to create in your mind.

What you think is what you create.

Exquisite Leader. Exquisite Life.

Note: The questions in this blog are found in The Work by Byron Katie.

Authentic Leadership: Letting the walls come down

What does it take to be authentically let go of the roles you play for success and approval?

People say they want to be who they are - and be accepted as is. I so get this!

To BE. This is the ALL of being authentic. Do you know how to BE? Unattached to doing - just who you are? Do you accept YOU for just being your unique self the day you were born? Is that in your consciousness?

Finding my way back to journey in life started with intense trauma and neglect. I learned ways to cope and survive.

At an early age, I learned to play many roles that provided approval, safety, and acceptance. For me, this meant hiding any sadness or fear. Playing the part to gain leadership status became my unconscious way to shine in the world.

Striving to be enough on the outside, I looked like a “successful” leader. The 2nd-grade student who would lead the class. The first chair violinist at the start of playing. The competitive athlete, winning track events. The competitive cyclist, 2nd in the nation in her first year, at age 42. And of course, a business leader in the corporate, non-profit, and entrepreneurial world, with accolades in local and national media.

What I’ve shared is not meant to brag. It is to highlight the relentless drive I had to keep going, to win and what it cost me. The cost: not knowing myself. The success that I built around me were walls to keep me safe - as if I were going to war each day.

You see - to take down these walls is to know me - to expose myself and come back inside. To love and accept the one in me who was so frightened, she devised a way to be safe in the world - unconsciously. This one found a way to have recognition and safety via being the best.

Whenever we don’t align ourselves with what we do, we lose energy and are not whole. The outcome is that we have constant tension inside of ourselves. This brings suffering and illness.

Returning to me means allowing and accepting me as I am - letting all the walls come down. My success is not who I am. To be an authentic leader is for me to drop the many roles that I have played to achieve success and come back home to me. To love self and then love others. To be kind and invite others to the wholeness that is already inside of self. To BE enough in this now moment, with no attachments to what others think or want, is the freedom to be me. This allowing also allows you to be you

Energy rises as we listen to ourselves and what brings us joy in our creating. Excellence combined with inner joy, expressed in our doing, brings us to our genius.

What is there for you to let go of? Where are you exhausting yourself to gain status, safety, or approval? What are the walls you have built to ignore you and live for others?

Will you allow the walls to come down, in order to be YOU - an authentic leader?

Transformation and the tools that will support you are available! I love to share what has brought me to this place of living with more joy, peace, and oneness. The possibilities live in awakening and choosing conscious you.

BE authentically YOU.

Exquisite Leader. Exquisite Life.

Creating Peace and Love

As I walk down one of the oldest, most beautiful streets in Paris, I ponder how it has now become the very center of Paris. Paris has greatly expanded from what used to be the city wall centuries ago and where the Jewish people were forced to live. I wonder about all the change that the people of this street have seen over the many years. You see, forcing the Jews to the city wall centuries ago has not brought lasting peace. Pushing them out of the city center was driven by people who felt threatened that they would not have enough. This is the fear state that we all create - each of us in our lives - when we don’t realize we are seeking our security from the outside.

Fear is our protector - our part of the brain (the amygdala) defending what it wants, in order to be safe. This is an automatic response expressed as our Ego, whenever we are triggered. Shuffling what is outside of ourselves to be happy, and safe is never the answer. Controlling the outside is a temporary fix to experiencing inner love and peace.

I believe that all people most want safety, connection, and love. Trying to change what we can’t really control is what keeps us from creating what we desire and brings inner suffering. We exhaust ourselves and end up with the result we don’t want! But the coolest thing is if we decide to be the change, instead of resisting what is, we create peace and joy. In fact, energy rises when we decide to be the creator of our life, regardless and in spite of people and situations. When we let go of being the controller of people and circumstances, change is then possible within. Awakening to being the creator of your our own precious life brings freedom, love, and contentment. Staying in our lane, while providing a space for others to do the same is abundant love for all.

We are the power to be the change that inspires others. We have the opportunity to cultivate self love each time we notice our fear statements (defensive reactivity) and choose a kinder thought. To shift out of this reactive state: stop, breathe and notice what you are believing. Accept yourself right where you are at. Then ask: Is this belief serving me?

The conflict that we see in the world also happens in our families, and boardrooms, because we are not owning the conflict we create inside ourselves. The only way to a different result is to look within.

The fight to be right, to have, and to control is based on ego. It is defensive, closed-minded, and disconnected. Love is the opposite. Love is welcoming, expansive, curious and connected. Love is the opposite of fear. Loving self is the means to loving others. Hatred outside comes from hatred within.

If we seek leadership that is built on trust and love - the place to start is by being radically responsible and looking at how we are the change. My joy is in sharing tools that have transformed the lives of countless leaders who are committed to this change! What does that commitment look like? Noticing our thoughts, breathing deeply, pausing and making conscious choices. This is transformational leadership.

Creating the life/work we most want is possible! All things are possible. We do have the power inside. Join me on this journey to being peace and love! 💜

Exquisite Leader. Exquisite Life

Present to Your Most Successful 2019

What will make your 2019 most successful?

Yes - as we plan for 2019, most people want to achieve something more, or different. And, most leaders believe that success is outside of themselves - at the effect of someone or something. Yet, we cannot control what is outside of ourselves. So, how will we ever have lasting success?


What do you most want? Where does this desire go, when you go about your daily life/work?

I will share my return to presence practice here.  Maybe you will want to join me! Success, one moment at a time.

For me, my want is to continue to know myself more. To wake up more quickly, to know.  Locating where I am (present or not) then choosing ease and flow. From this place, I consciously create a relationship to myself and others with more joy and peace. My work unfolds through my relationships, as I lead leaders on their own discovery of authentic wholeness. Being conscious of choice and present to what is as a continual practice.

The center of success is accepting all the results, while staying curious, as to how this is for learning - in all ways. How have I created this result? Going deeper is accepting myself and this result without blame. Then noticing if am I truly willing to shift. Am I willing to get out of drama with myself and others? What emotions are present - fear, anger, sadness, joy or creative energy? Hmmmm. Breathing and taking in all that is here for me now.

Reflect: When I have unwanted results, am I willing to be the creator of my life/work, and not be at the effect of anyone or anything outside of myself? I am open to owning just my responsibility? What have I not been facing? How am I limiting myself?

Believing that what I think on brings my feelings and actions - I have the power to create my result. Listening to my body, emotions, and mind in the moment is my practice. The more quickly that I am aware of my being state, the more success I will have in creating the results that I most want.

Creating what brings me the most joy is integrity to self and then with others. Listening to my inner being and knowing when I am off kilter is the opportunity to get back to presence. Here and now - what is my whole yes? Staying in presence and returning to it more quickly when I wander is my path to 2019 success.

Choose HOW you want to build your success before you focus on the content. The only one you are always responsible for is yourself. How you are being with yourself is your power to being an exquisite leader.

Coming Home for Christmas!

The biggest gift you can give yourself, is the gift of loving and accepting yourself - just as you are.

For you to truly know that you are more than what you do, and not what someone thinks of you. The truth is that you become who you think you are. What are you telling yourself?

Coming back home to you means dropping all the externals that temporarily bring you joy, and appreciating yourself for who you are. You are like no other in the world, created to live with purpose that only you can uniquely fulfill - in all of history.

What you do is not who you are. Separating this is everything. Our ego does not believe this. Ego says do more, be better, go faster. And the world agrees with the ego. Our transformation is to notice the ego. Appreciate. And then choose to empower your full self, by creating a more loving thought that is in alignment to your whole being. Again, letting go of outside approval that the ego so desperately wants to cling to for security. Letting go of ego attachments and being in peace, in the now moment is the foundation to returning home.

Home is who you are regardless of where, who, or what is on the other side of you.

Give yourself the gift of inner alignment - mind, heart, gut and body. You know how this oneness feels! Come back to home. Sit with this one in peace and love.

Merry Christmas Beautiful Ones!



What I hear from most people, no matter their role in life or work, is that they are stressed, tired, and on the run. The common mantra: “I can’t get it all done and don’t have enough time!”

What is making us run? What are we really after? These days parents and children are tightly scheduled and committed with little down time. We are leading our young children to the idea that success is in doing more. More checking email, more social media, more homework, more sports, more volunteering, more testing…Yikes! What are we creating and modeling?

As we are more connected to the world, we are more disconnected from ourselves and those closest to us. For example, social-media is a fantastic tool for staying connected, however, it also supports the belief that more and faster is better. It also allows us to check out-disconnecting from ourselves and each other.  We don’t connect to our inner knowing and peace. We unconsciously follow what is outside of ourselves. We splinter from our whole being.

As an Executive Conscious Leadership Coach, I notice that the CEO’s and leaders I partner with move at a fast pace to win, achieve mega goals, and grow billion-dollar companies. Yet, internal success and enoughness eludes their daily experience, even while their external lives appear to have it all. Little inner knowing is being listened to. Fear motivates decisions and actions. Joy and peace continue to erode, as stress and blame take over, while guiding leadership. Brilliant minds are on overdrive much of the time. Rest is not an option most days.

What is this culture we are creating? We don’t allow time to breathe, be still and reflect. We are exhausted by the time we slow down each day. This is the reality, at work and home, for most.

Stop right now. Breathe. Take 3 slow, deep breaths. Notice if being still is uncomfortable or even possible. Breathe. Be present to your breath. Breathe. Come inward to self. Be still for 2 minutes.

Striving to Be Enough. If you are looking outside of yourself for success…for any comfort, recognition, and acceptance that you are enough, you will never have it. The more you compare yourself to those around you, the more you will find a way to see yourself as lacking. Our disconnect with self causes stress, illness...internal drama. This is what kills us slowly - emotionally, physically, and relationally. No one else can give you what you most want and need -inner peace and fulfillment.

What if you are enough? And, you decide what is enough. You decide on how you want to live. In this now moment, you do have enough. Your heart is beating, your lungs are filling with air, and you are reading these words. You lack nothing right now. Future thoughts of the unknown bring anxiety and strife. Focusing on the past keeps you stuck and leads to depression. Let it go. You have the power to choose being present in this moment. What you tell yourself is what you create. What you believe is evidenced by all of your results. Accepting what is and consciously choosing what you tell yourself in the moment is the foundation to empowering yourself to live the life you most want. Awaken to your unconscious beliefs that keep you on the run and small. Results do no lie.

You are enough. It is your choice to choose what you believe right now - and the next right now. Also, know that your being is not based on what you do. Your purpose is more than doing.

Abundance Thinking. Aligning with what is in your heart, mind and soul is the connection to purpose. This is the root of internal abundance. It’s a state which allows you to create your life/work from a belief of fullness and appreciation. It begets more possibility and joy. Knowing oneself and what truly fits - a whole body yes – is your energy in flow, and you create without struggle. You notice and choose that which feeds your soul. You co-create win-for-all solutions in the world, because you are not viewing yourself, or your life, from a place of lack. Your connection to self expands, as you stand for you. You are able to support others, as you first love yourself.

What do you believe in your heart? What do you give your thoughts to? Reminder: If you are not getting the results you most want, this is your wake-up call always! Be still and listen to what you already know inside of yourself. Honor and be kind to the one and only you! Shifting to creating what aligns with you, to then sharing with the world from the inside out, is transformation. This is getting to your genius!

Coaching leaders to choose conscious transformation that brings inner and outer alignment is my absolute passion. I’m here to support your awakening to your amazing self.

An Overachiever’s Overachiever

As an overachiever’s overachiever, I can run around meeting goals while pushing past those around me. Or, sometimes I even push those around me to keep going. At that point, I do not notice who is around me.  Wow! How might that feel?

As I have been learning to slow down and put people first, I realize more and more how people most importantly want to be noticed and heard. I do not have to solve their concerns. If I just take time to connect with the person near me–observe who they are and appreciate their uniqueness, they are encouraged. Hearing what they have to say is the largest part of lifting their heart. I do not have to fix anything -just be human with them and listen.

This practice goes so far in the workplace as well-and builds unity, loyalty, creativity and ultimate results. Slow down with me today -observe, appreciate and hear those around you. This is the foundation of building an engaging environment and so worthy of achievement.

Choosing a Successful Leader

In choosing a leader, I look at those who have been hugely successful in overcoming their own adversity. What is common? They all kept going. Their mindset was to focus on their strengths and calling at the moment in time.  And when I want to succeed in a particular way, I look to those who have already achieved what I want. I find that leader, or mentor and ask them to coach me. Asking myself what I want and going after it has been key to my moving forward. Being open to all that I can learn and striving to grow each day bolsters my commitment.

Next, I narrow what I am good at, what result I want, and what I need to do to get better, stronger, faster, more successful, etc.,  I keep my eyes and ears open. I watch for how a potential coach leads their life, how they interact with others and how they have responded to daily adversity.

I believe that we are all humans first and how we lead our life is how we lead others. Yes, we have differences among genders, cultures, experiences, desires, skills, education, and the list goes on. But to look beyond this is what has made the difference to me. Noticing the unique being, as is,  I hope to learn something from everyone. This attitude opens me up to the whole world– which is very exciting!

My approach to success in business and life is modeled well via my cycling and racing. I sought out the best racers and coaches that I could find–and I rode and trained with them. I showed up as just me.  Yes-it was a bit intimidating at  first, but I committed to riding with them  3-4 times a week. And as I did this, I grew and became stronger by pushing myself in all areas. Getting rid of fear, as I kept stepping forward and into the unknown.

Note: I did not notice that I was the only woman training with maybe 20-30 men,  I did not think to myself — how am I different? For we are all different!  I became a nationally ranked top racer my first year of racing against woman half my age –because of my mindset during my training. And in the business world, I look at the human before me–not their title,  and see them as valuable.

And when I get off track,  I remind myself that I am called to be the best me–just me and hone in on what I can continue to learn. I remember my purpose and goals and check to see if my activity, focus, work, thoughts, and relationships align. Asking myself what enlivens me, also brings more affirmation and direction towards my purpose. Not comparing myself  to another, but looking at my inner strengths and goals,  I practice my skills each day. And practice and more practice I do-even when I am tired, and I do not feel like it. I have chosen to be committed to myself first each day. My integrity to myself is what drives me to keep going. This is how I became a great racer –and leader of my family and business.

The alignment of oneself has to be first in all areas. If there is not an alignment, fear, unrest, depression and wavering take over. The key to success in life and business is just this. So let’s encourage others by being just who we are – and clearing a space for the other to do the same. Loving and respecting each other as humans first and foremost. Leading yourself well is successful leadership. Be you and change the world!

Engaging Teams For A Win-Win

Team engagement–A win for all! As I have experienced racing as a competitive cyclist on a successful race team, I realized that my team tactics work well when applied in the business world also!

Being a part of a diverse race team, our director coached us on specific skills, drills, and how to work closely together. We each had certain talents in certain areas–hill climbing, road racing, criterium racing, and sprinting- to mention a few. We each knew who was best at a certain skill by observing and practicing over and over again.

And learning from our teammate was not a threat, but valued and cherished. They became our go to person.  For we knew each other so well, that it became an automatic focus in the midst of  an all out out, put it all down effort race. We also knew who was not as gifted in specific areas. This was not a judgment -but and area to grow in, learn from and encourage another. A clear reminder of  which talents to focus and how to move forward individually and as a team overall. In fact, we all worked hard on all of the skills, in order to improve–physically and mentally.

For me, not being the best hill climber, I travelled every spring to California to challenge, strengthen and grow my climbing muscles. I pushed myself on extreme altitudes day in and day out. I was tired and sore-but I knew that I would be able to transfer these growing tools to the summer races– with much  better outcomes.  This may show up in a race, in order to relieve my teammate, who is a stronger climber overall to take a break. I pulled for them, leaving more power and energy to get them to the finish line ahead of others and obtaining a win.

Each day-every morning, I woke early 6 days a week following my coaches plan that we created together. I was tired many days as I woke at 4:40 am, but I knew that doing the work at hand would pay off in the long run. I just has to put it all out there each day. Looking at the day at hand and what I had to do, instead of the end results, brought me to reach race day wins! My first year racing, at age 42, I was ranked 2nd out of 998 women nationally.

As for my passion in criterium racing, I just loved the feeling of wondering who will be at the start line-who can I meet for the first time?  How fast will they be and what are they good at? at the start line,  I welcomed new people, and greeted each racer as a friend. I knew that we all were anxious, but a smile and hello seemed to help others–as it did me. For we are all unique  people first. But when the bell went off, I knew it was time to push through the fear, breathing and focusing on the task right in front of me. As my heart felt as though it would burst, and my legs screamed at me, with no looking at the laps to go–I just focused on the very moment at hand. I kept pushing as hard as I could- with a natural smile. For this was my love.

When I had crazy thoughts of –“Why are you doing this? You are in pain. You are tired! Do you really like doing this, really”?  I quickly told myself -keep your head in the game! You have trained yourself for this. You are ready! Your coach said you are strong! Get going and put it down! And you really do love this! I had to decide where my focus my thoughts immediately and constantly. If I did not, I would fall off the lead pack. This has become my true source of power: What to dwell on and how quickly I can change my thinking to align with what I want.

As for my team, we discussed at the beginning of the day- how we were feeling (mentally and physically) and what role we felt most able to fulfill that day. We decided together, who we wanted to support getting on the podium, and how to make that happen. We observed other teams, and discussed possible tactics that they might employ and who to watch for. As we became experts in listening to what others were saying and how they felt, we knew how to go after a win as a team.

Big application: as a team, we kept in touch with each other all during the race. We looked for each other, we asked how they were feeling, and if they could hold to the original morning plan that we had already made. We made adjustments together and communicated, as we raced as fast as we could! The goal was to get a team member on the podium -a team win! Some days, I was the one on the podium, other days, I helped my teammate get there! We strived to be in sync with each other at all times. And we had joy! We said that the moment we are not enjoying this, it is time to leave. Life is for joy. Joy at work needs to be present for collaboration, creativity, productivity and a win to show up. Hard work with a sense of being, and purpose drives the mind to keep going and focus. The win will come!

Note: We could not change the other racers, or our own teammate. But we could do our best to be our best and help the other to be theirs. This is what made us a true team that was respected, followed and revered by others. And our director was always there, timing us, calling out where we were and growing us. He never yelled, as he was a calm man, who consistently was there for us. We had fun but worked hard. We kept striving to grow and connect-with ourself and our team. We celebrated successes, we had parties just because, and we cared for one another. In fact, racing teams became like family to me–even my biggest competitors. For I tried to love everyone as they as a valued creation. And I think they all sensed that. The value of putting people first is priceless.

As I now coach Leaders, CEOs, and Teams in the business world, I share these “tactics” with them. Sharing love, joy, understanding, collaboration, gratitude, communication, and putting forth your best each day brings the results for the team as well as the individual. We are really in this together –so let’s do this!

Growing From The Unexpected

As I am really faced with being still, I wonder what I can learn. Since I broke my foot this past weekend, I am unable to walk, ride my bike, or even stand for any length of time. And for an athlete who never enjoys being inactive, I am exploring my unforeseen path. A path that I would never have chosen.

Again–CHOICES-what are they now for the next eight weeks?At times, I am trying to pull my mind back from racing into despair. Quieting my mind, even when I was very active was not a part of my natural routine. I have had to continue learning to sit still and just be. And now with this body having to rest, I wonder how I can really be in the moment more than ever. Just because my body is forced to be inactive, does not mean that my brain will follow. What is needed though is Rest-oration–Body, mind and soul!

Also, I think of the companies and leaders that I coach. How they too are facing unknown results, consequences –and may even be feeling out of control. My coaching work is focused on how to be 100% responsible for oneself at all times. No blaming, shaming or trying to change another person–No blaming of self either. Instead, a wondering of how to grow and learn even during unwanted results is what drives leaders, teams and companies to greatness!

Deciding that my running around has been caboshed for a good reason, I still struggle to make sense of this. For me to be conscious, I have been learning to take one idea, task, and want at a time. I can practice breathing, being more present and feeling my thoughts all the way through to completion, as I wonder what harmony is for me. With my overachiever ways and successes along the way, I just have learned to keep going–to keep pushing through. Growth is sometimes painful and uncomfortable–In fact, I think that in order to stretch, there will usually be discomfort.

Continued lessons for me: these last few years, I am noticing that for a sustainable life of joy, connection, peace and lasting success, I too need to quiet my thoughts. Then being really diligent on where I choose to dwell makes all things flow from there. Relationships, businesses, environments are all affected by who I choose to be, and who you choose to be. It is very basic and true. Getting back to the basics…what does this look like for you? What “fractures” are you enduring in work and life –and what can you learn from this?

Loving this time and sharing what I continue to learn with my family, friends, and clients brings me happiness and a greater sense of purpose. As I put myself first, I am again reminded of how valuable each persons is –and that I can only give, after I fill up on the inside. How are you filling up and pouring into your teams?

How can you slow yourself down today and wonder? Who are you called to be right now–and how to shut off the noise around you?–What is most important in your thoughts?

We know that creating engaging, sustainable, conscious companies is the answer to luring in the next generation of leaders who want to make a difference. Today–will you remember with me to lead yourself first and practice engaging all of you –body, mind and soul? Slowing down to listen to yourself –can you hear who you are and how you are called to be 100% responsible to you alone?  Making this your foundation, you will call in your genius and shine wherever you are. And leaders who lead this way will draw others who align with changing the world–one person at at time.

Habits to observe: looking inside or outside for the answers? Reacting or creating? Honoring doing or being? With this noticing, you have unlimited choices and opportunities to shift, learn and grow. This is all very good!

con⋅scious [kon-shuhs]

1. aware of one’s own existence, sensations, thoughts, surroundings, etc.
2. living with your eyes open

How to Win in Business - Invest in Your People First!

If you are really willing to make a change in your business–one of stainable success in all areas-you must put your people first. There is no other way. Invest in each individual and your returns will be astronomical. Working with people and how to collaborate, communicate, be 100% responsible– and how to make changes from the inside out is my specialty.

My current coaching at a logistics technology company made lasting changes within 6 months…

“I was skeptical when my work group began working with Debra, as we had a long history of not working well together and poor attention from our senior management. Deb won me over. She not only gave us ways for our team to work together better, but enlisted company leaders to pay more attention to what we need to succeed. I learned valuable techniques for creating a more positive and effective working environment — tools I’ve also used in my personal life!” Holly F.

When a person feels valued and heard–you gain a loyal team player who will give their best for you and your clients. It is the ultimate win-win for all. So invest in the BEING that is before you–then their doing will be more than just a goal. Reverse the process–being then doing. You will see an engaged person come alive. This is the answer to attraction and retention–and the bottom line. It is that simple.

There is greatness in all of us–let it come forward. Create a space for this and you will be amazed at the culture that will unfold. A culture where people want to come to work-with joy and purpose. Who would not want this? One person at a time–be the culture.

Choose your investment–time and money—put it in your people first. Get rid of a fear and blame driven culture by inviting creativity, curiosity, candor, and the whole person.

Connect with me, if you are ready for this growth in your business.

Intrinsic vs Extrinsic

Intrinsic versus Extrinsic

As I coach business teams, I tend to see people looking outside themselves, focused on the other…But really in fact, we tend to do this in life as well.  Our view somehow turns to what the other person is or is not doing. What they “should”do or say. Then we get annoyed, upset and distracted from being who we are created to be.

What if for just this day and every moment, we practice looking more deeply at our own self? How to be fully and uniquely who we are -no matter where we are. And, how not be dictated by the people around us, but to be centered on personal growth-living fully right now.

A better day comes about, when I focus on my purpose for this day at hand and what is truly my responsibility. I am not tied to anyone else. Showing up more fully, as who I am takes mindfulness and practice. This is enough to focus on. I found that the freedom to let others choose to be who they are brings a peace and focus on myself. Looking to the other with “shoulds” being placed on them is a waste of my time and energy! Focusing on being my best self today–my biggest responsibility.

Joy - 'Tis the Season

Do You Have It? Joy.

Revel and delight are synonyms to rejoicing. We don’t often hear of people taking delight each day. What would it look like for you to really have a deep happiness inside each day? If your answer depends on anything outside of yourself, you will hold a fleeting, inner spark that is snuffed by the world.

Can someone or something really give you sustainable joy? Where does it come from?

For I have come to realize that joy is a choice. Life, it is the playground for learning, always.That alone causes my heart to jump! The opportunities to create and recreate my life have been endless. What can I learn, and how can I grow to be my most awesome self? What really gladdens my heart is living a life of purpose.

And, joy is really a matter of perspective. What color are your lenses? Coolness: There is always the option to exchange for a different pair. You alone decide. Own your view.

And when the cold winds bluster about, it is then that I choose to notice the beauty in pain, loss, and the unexpected. My vantage point, each moment is my sole responsibility.

Shouting for joy, I am blessed to create life with those in my life: my children, friends, and clients. I am thankful for all the glorious beauty. My story and belief is that we are made for joy. What is your story? If your current one is not working for you, make 2017 your new chapter.


Just Be Your Great Self!

Focusing on the core of your greatness brings peace, joy and success in all areas of life. Really notice who you are and seek to follow what you already know to be true inside of you. Looking outward confuses us and leads to distractions. No one can be fully you and do what you can as you do–seek this and rise above mediocrity. Live your WHY–wherever you are. DOUBLE DOWN ON YOUR TALENTS AT EVERY TURN

“If you spend most of your life trying to be good at everything, you eliminate your chances of being great at anything. Unless your goal is to be mediocre at a lot of things, starting with what you are naturally good at is a matter of efficiency. Focusing on strengths is in many ways a basic time-allocation issue. Every hour you invest in an area where you have natural talent has a multiplying effect, whereas each hour you spend trying to remedy a weakness is like working against a gravitational force. Yet many people spend years or even decades working on weaknesses in hopes that doing so will make them well-rounded.

Do everything you can to avoid falling into this trap. While well-roundedness may be helpful for acquiring the basic tools in any trade—such as reading, writing, and arithmetic—it loses value as you get closer to finding a career. At that point, what’s more important and relevant is what sets you apart. If you want to be great at something in your lifetime, double down on your talents at every turn.”
—Tom Rath from Are You Fully Charged?

Leaders Being 120% Responsible Shift

“If you do not know how to ask the right question, you discover nothing.” ~William Edwards Deming

“You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” ~ Naguib Mahfouz

Stress for many leaders comes from thinking that they need to know it all. They must have the solutions, before an issue or concern arises. The what ifs, if then, or maybes…That is what a leader does–right? Being one step ahead, managing it all and trying to keep all things under control. Wow…no wonder most of us leaders are running about in twenty directions at once, with little sleep, headaches, stomach upset, broken relationships and angst. And what about pursuing joy, peace, clarity, and a one step at a time–in the flow thinking?  Yeah right! How does that happen? As an overachiever, “This is not an option!”–so we say to ourselves. If balls drop, all goes to you know where.

But really, what are you responsible for? Looking closely at the choices we make all day long is critical. Being 120% responsible is damaging to you and all your relationships. We think–“Oh, if I do more, that is going to help. That is what a strong leader does–and I must step in and fix this.” And what about the 20% you took away from the other–the team player who is not given the opportunity to shine, because you took their place away to do so? You are trying to be a hero to all. But how this really shows up– you are the know it all, and don’t trust easily. You are controlling and above others. And you wonder why people don’t step up with their own ideas and actions–why they don’t fully engage and put in their 100%!

The first step–stop. Breathe. Listen to yourself. What are YOU called to? Then ask powerful questions of your teams, your partner, your children, your friends, and listen. People do have the answers already inside of them. As a leader, you may just need to help pull it out of them–and the best way to find ownership is to ask not tell. In the asking, the responder comes up with an “Oh yeah…” A wonder that is invited and shared between people sparks the ultimate connection that leads to results far greater than you could have ever produced on your own. And you build a relationship that fosters trust and collaboration. Who does not want this in their work and life?

So it is simple. Do less. Breathe more. Take on only what you are called to.  Ask more questions than you do declaring statements. Practice making this shift today and notice your results and the results of the people in your work and life. I bet you will find yourself smiling more and feeling less anxious.

Summary: The one thing sited over and over again when speaking on leadership is the need to ask questions then listen. As Tony Robbins says; “Quality questions create a quality life. Successful people ask better questions, & as a result, they get better answers.”  The best way to learn how to ask better questions is to keep practicing. Go for it! Do less and ask more.