45 things I’ve learned in 45 years

1. You have 1 life; there are no guarantees how long it will be so live the hell out of it 2. Life is not fair, get over that part fast, and thrive anyways
3. Travel often
4. Travel A LOT
5. Travel on a dime, you will see more and learn more about the beauty of humanity than from any 5 star resort. The amazingness of those folks that live in developing countries far exceeds their ‘gratitude’ for receiving clothing donations, at a trips end. Although we should not stop doing that …regardless of social-economic standings EVERYBODY likes surprised with free stuff 🙂
6. Travel high end. Yes, I said that. It’s all about balance. You deserve to live like the other half, even if it is only on vacation. Upgrade, use the concierge, request turn down service. Soak in the luxury.
7. Trust your gut. But don’t just listen to the initial ‘gut’ message. Dig deeper, there is always a deeper reason your gut sends you a warning.
8. Laugh. A LOT. Especially when it is hardest. The laughter I have shared with my family through our hardest times is what makes us OK. Awesome even 🙂
9. Love with your fullest heart.
10. Be kind. Every damn day.
11. Get as much education as you can. Formal, informal, structured, through TED talks, books, courses, whatever and however. Education is always your ticket forward.
12. Talk deeply with people. Have people you can settle down into the deepest most beautiful conversations with.
13. Surround yourself with people you can trust. People that have your back. Your people.
14. Be yourself. You are amazing. All of your attributes, characteristics, uniqueness. All amazingly you.
15. Take risks. Make sure they are smart risks but have the confidence to put it out there.
16. Do yoga.
17. Go to Africa. Drink it in. Wrap yourself up in it.
18. See the big 5 in their natural environment, not only in Zoo’s
19. Find the gift in every situation. Understand this is a process and will take time, but for your own inner peace make lemonade out of every lemon thrown.
20. Understand and know what makes you happy. Then do more of it.
21. When something does not work out, it is not failure.
22. Take every opportunity presented.
23. Run. Yes it is hard. Push through anyways.
24. Don’t expect perfection from people. Especially yourself. Also do not align with those that expect perfect from you. They will suck your soul.
25. Do something wild in your younger days, so when are older you can still dazzle the ‘young’ ones with your stories. I still laugh when I think of myself bungee jumping n NZ.
26. See as much live music as you can.
27. Be a music snob. There is far too much awesome indie/alternative music out there to support the crap churned out en mass
28. Prioritize the time to read. Anything and everything
29. Watch all (7) Star Wars movies in order. Whatever that ‘order’ is to you 🙂
30. Have a dog or cat. Fur Babies add so much more to our lives than just fur and poop.
31. Try everything, spread yourself as thin as possibly with a diversity of activities, interests and commitments, then begin pulling back to balance once you hone in on the things you really connect to.
32. Wear sunscreen and be sun safe. Check your skin
33. Go to Disney. Stay on site, blow the budget and live the magic.
34. Go for a run in Central Park.
35. Do the NYC 5 Boroughs Bike Tour.
36. Buy something at Tiffany’s
37. Go to Vegas. And The French Quarter in New Orleans.
38. Understand that when you lose a parent young, you grow up with the knowledge that anything can be taken from you at any point. As tragic and unwanted as this knowledge is, it has modeled me into the person I am. Therefore, I love BIG, FULL-ON and COMPLETELY in the ‘unofficial’ race against time. To be my true friend you need to know, understand and accept this intensity about me.
39. I am flawed but authentically me. I am far from perfect but you always have the real me. When I embrace you as my friend, you are all in. You will not get rid of me unless you cut the cord. This has not always worked well for me when I have embraced the wrong types of characters, but for the very few times this has been the outcome it is still a roll of the dice I will happily take.
40. Surround yourself with folks that are smarter, more driven and way more interesting than yourself, life is an adventure when you get to see things through their eyes.
41. Cancer puts everything in perspective.
42. Health is a gift.
43. There is no greater accomplishment or joy in my life than my loved ones. My kiddos are everything to me. I am completely and blissfully obsessed with them. They make my day. Every day. I am beyond blessed by the love of the most amazing (and patient) man that puts up with me on a full time basis. LOL. I could not be the me I am, without him being the him, he is. My brother and sister are a couple of my favorite and most impressive people I have the honour of knowing. They have been busy inspiring, protecting and making me laugh for 45 years now. My Mom is my hero; everything I know I learned from her. If I can be half the person she is I will consider myself a success. My friends are, simply put, THE.BEST. I LOVE.LOVE.LOVE each and every one of you. Regardless if I’ve known you 30+ years or met you recently you are in my life because you mean the world to me.
44. Life is too short to drink bad wine.
45. Embrace life, every damn day.

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This could possibly be the SINGLE GREATEST career development mantra ever. EVER.

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Focus on YOU

I hope you are enjoying your cup of self love as much as I am. #happySunday #selfcare #selflove #positiveforwardmotion50023b3be25bb2aae5ab83eab8bf4e16-400x288.png

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Melanoma Awareness

Please watch this. The entire thing. Watch it for yourself, your family, your friends, your kids, total strangers…

Then PLEASE share it.

With Melanoma, awareness is half the battle. Check your skin monthly. Early diagnosis can save lives. It saved mine.

 

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Cancer puts life in perspective. Can I have a Hells Yah to that!?!

And then there’s the day when you wake up and feel like your old self again 😊

This Fall has been a w12342737_10153705399255132_4165395282490692143_nild one. On August 25th my dermatologist referred me to a surgeon to remove a spot on my skin he was concerned about. I was told this was serious but likely precautionary and I did everything I possibly could to keep positive, trying to convince myself he was just being cautious.
Oct 2nd I had my first surgery. 2 weeks later I found out the pathology had come back and was malignant melanoma. Nothing can prepare you for those words. Malignant. Nothing. Took over a week to get conclusive information on my next steps. Longest and possibly one of the most traumatic times of my life. In that time I heard, they would need to do another surgery, that they’d got it all, that they would need to take biopsies from my lymph nodes, blood tests from my liver, etc, it went on with every different physician I spoke to the story changed. Fear doesn’t come close to what I was feeling.
When a biopsy is malignant they go back in to take more, to assess if the cancer has spread. I had my second surgery and found out that they had got it all. ALL.OF.IT. It had not spread.

Exhale.

Grateful is not a big enough word to describe how I felt hearing that. I still can’t find a word big enough.
It’s a feeling of complete and utter weightlessness, euphoria, relief, joy… I collapsed, literally wailing into Paul’s arms, purging months of internal terror, in a hospital hallway in my husbands arms.

I’ve since had another spot removed. I’m awaiting those results. Fingers and toes crossed.
I’m told with a Melanoma diagnosis you have an increased risk so to be vigilant about watching my skin bi-monthly and noting anything that changes.

Believe me, you don’t need to tell me twice. On it!

The reason I am sharing my personal story is because of two things my dermatologist and surgeon said to me along this journey that have me feeling a weighty level of responsibility to spread melanoma awareness.
1. They said I was lucky it was caught early because that is the thing that saved my life.
Early diagnosis and excision.
I told them a friend had told me to go get it looked at. They told me to go thank my friend for saving my life. My beloved guardian angel, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I am indebted to you my dear xo
2. The second thing my Drs told me was that skin cancer is the only cancer you can see coming, but you have to be looking.

This resonated so deeply for me as I hadn’t been looking. I thought I had, but somehow didn’t see this spot, plain as day on my arm. Thankfully my friend was. It took someone pointing it out for me to see, but now I’ll be looking.

Please do the same.

And that is why I’m posting. I feel so blessed, and lucky, and now I want to pay it forward in the largest way, to let others know, to spread awareness.

Vigilant proactive lifesaving awareness.

So please promise me, my family and friends, check your skin. Every inch. Check each other, check your partners, kids, friends, each other. Melanoma is quickly on the rise in younger people, in fair skinned folks like me and in darker complexions as well, and it is deadly.

Please promise me you’ll check yourself.

I’m so blessed. So blessed to be on the other side of this one, and now vigilant about watching for other spots. So blessed for my husband, family, and friends’ support and strength through the darkest and scariest days of this. I love you. So very very much.
So blessed I have my whole life ahead of me.

If you think I lived life to the fullest before, you ain’t seen nothing yet!!!

‪#‎checkyourskin‬ ‪#‎melanoma‬ ‪#‎awareness‬ ‪#‎positiveforwardmotion‬

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#operationtransformation

I have woken up the last few mornings with the same question on my mind. What will I do today that will transform my life? I am looking to make a few key changes in my life, namely nutrition and exercise. And I spend A LOT of time thinking about those changes. A LOT. So much so, it is truly shocking that I am not seeing any differences. AT ALL. But I am realizing, slowly, that merely thinking about this change will not bring it on. I think I am now moving through the process to understand that I actually have to DO something. And believe me, I am not being facetious. I wish I were. Sadly, though, I’m not. But the good news is I am actually feeling empowered by my new (and totally obvious and logical) realization that my success, my transformation if you will, is completely within my own power to reach. That is pretty darn cool. So here I go on my quest for the answer to my burning question …What will I do today that will transform my life?

#operationtransformation

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Leadership …philosophically speaking

I couldn’t agree more. This encapsulates my personal & professional philosophy on leadership & the role of a leader.

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