You Have the Life You’re Willing to Put Up With

“You have the life you’re willing to put up with”.

Think about it, what are the problems of those heinous dark shadows currently spoiling the warmth and happiness of your otherwise blissful life?

🎯 Do you hate your job?
🎯 Are you in a bad relationship?
🎯 Is there something wrong with your health?

Fine! Get a new job, end the relationship, change your diet and exercise or locate the kind of help you need. Seems simple doesn’t it?

Even when it comes to the things you seemingly had no say in, like the death of a loved one, losing your business … you have a massive say and the ways you live your life in the aftermath of those events.

If you’re not willing to take the actions to change your situation, in other words if you’re willing to put up with your situation then whether you like it or not that is the life you have chosen. Before you say … “but” or start to get your knickers in a twist let me say one more thing. By defending your circumstances as they are right now, you are actually making a case for being where you are. Give it up. No buts. You can’t afford them they’re excess baggage on a trip that requires you to travel light.


“Circumstances don’t make the man, and they only reveal him to himself.”


That’s a quote by Epictetus as Epictetus points to – the true meaning of who you are won’t be found in your circumstances but rather the way in which you respond to them. To start this new process, you must first stop another one!”

~ UnFu*k Yourself, Get Out of Your Head and Into Your Life by Gary John Bishop

Holy Crow! I Conquered my BIGGEST Fear!

So, you think you can’t do something? You’re too scared? 😱.

You can, you are scared AND do it anyway!

Anyone who knows me knows I’m deathly afraid of heights. Ask my kids how I am when we take off on a plane.  Ask them which one’s hand used to hurt worse from the nail marks in them!

Ask my eldest about the time we went to the Empire State Building and for the picture everyone’s in it looking down at the beautiful night scape of NYC and I’m a step away from the entrance way snapping the photo from there.

Ask my youngest about the time we went to the CN Tower and she was only allowed to go on the part of the glass floor that was closest to me (not in the middle). Or when we were on The Top Of Rockefeller Centre in NYC a few years ago and I had to ask her to come away from the glass ledge because I was so scared for her 😳.

Having given you that background of relatedness. You’re now present to how scared I was to do this – AND I did it anyway 👏

Self generated fear is what prevents us from living our BEST lives folks (in all respects). And it isn’t real. It’s just a limiting belief. Nothing more, nothing less.  

And that’s not somewhere I choose to live any longer. I choose to live and come from a place of power AND strength 💪🏼.  And now that I’ve conquered this and am 💯 per cent the fearless woman I always knew myself to be – the rest of my life is never going to be the same (thank goodness).

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I’m out there on the court everyday – living my best life, confronting my fears and taking on everything that comes my way, powerfully.

What’s your biggest fear?  Have you conquered it?  Have you attempted to?  What was the result?

Wisdom Warrior: My Journey Toward Authenticity

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I consider myself more of a spiritual person than a religious one. I meditate, chant and listen to Hindi mantras/vedas, started to re-practice Yoga, believe in Om Namah Shivaya (ॐ नमः शिवाय) which literally translates to “I honour the divinity that dwells within me, I bow to Shiva, my true identity” – I believe in it so much so that I had it tattooed on my left hip as a constant reminder to myself to be genuine and true to my authentic self.  I believe in the “Universe” as much as I believe in God. I pray, and attend church on occasion (I was baptized Roman Catholic).  I believe in doing what calms and heals the soul.  I am one that believes in the power of positive thinking, the law of attraction, and in serendipity.  BUT, I am also a person who believes that things don’t fall into your lap and that you are the creator of your own destiny – you can shape your life by being cognizant of certain factors, understanding your blueprint and that it is necessary to reshape your mindset.

I have another tattoo – on my right ribcage – a quatrain from a poem by Edgar Guest called Myself.  I love this poem because he talks about wanting to be his authentic self.  About looking in the mirror and liking who he sees and that his conscience is clear when he lays his head down at night.  I’ve bolded the portion that is tattooed on my ribs.

MYSELF

I have to live with myself and so
I want to be fit for myself to know.
I want to be able as days go by,
always to look myself straight in the eye;
I don’t want to stand with the setting sun
and hate myself for the things I have done.
I don’t want to keep on a closet shelf
a lot of secrets about myself
and fool myself as I come and go
into thinking no one else will ever know
the kind of person I really am,
I don’t want to dress up myself in sham.
I want to go out with my head erect
I want to deserve all men’s respect;
but here in the struggle for fame and wealth
I want to be able to like myself.
I don’t want to look at myself and know that
I am bluster and bluff and empty show.
I never can hide myself from me;
I see what others may never see;
I know what others may never know, 
I never can fool myself and so, 
whatever happens I want to be 
self respecting and conscience free.

I have yet another tattoo on the nape of my neck, that simply says “Let me be myself” with a red rose. I chose the red rose because it is an unmistakable expression of love (self love). This is actually a sentence from a song called “Let Me Be Myself” by one of my favourite bands, 3 Doors Down.

The lyrics go ….

I guess I just got lost
Being someone else.
I tried to kill the pain,
But nothing ever helped.
I left myself behind,
Somewhere along the way
Hoping to come back around
To find myself someday
Lately I’m so tired of waiting for you
To say that it’s OK.
Tell me please
Would you one time just let me be myself
So I can shine
With my own light.
Let me be myself.
Would you let me be myself?

I’ve had this tattoo for about 5/6 years now – spiritually this song to me is simply saying – LET. ME. BE. ME.  This tattoo was part of a big personal growth journey into authenticity for me.  It was also my subtle way of telling a certain few (they have no idea who they are) – that I got lost but am no longer.

I have yet another tattoo on the other side of my ribs which simply states AMBITION – no explanation required –  a desire and determination to achieve success.

My point in explaining most of my tattoos is to share with you my personal journey – I try to talk the talk and walk the walk (I’m not perfect at it and I falter from time to time, but as is said life’s a journey not a destination).  I’m a walking billboard for personal positivity.

I have three top WISDOM WARRIORS as I call them, to whom I listen every day, whose words inspire, motivate and encourage me to be greater, better, stronger and a truer more authentic version of myself.  These three (in alphabetical order) are:

  1. Tony Robbins
  2. Robin Sharma
  3. Eric Thomas

Robin Sharma

Screen Shot 2017-08-15 at 8.37.10 PM4 years ago, I had the immense pleasure of seeing the first of my idols speak at a Canadian National conference I attended in Edmonton.  Robin Sharma is most well known for his international best selling book The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari.  Robin’s runaway bestseller The Leader Who Had No Title was the #1 Business book on amazon.com.  But, the book that got me started and hooked on this leadership guru and personal mastery was his book DISCOVER YOUR DESTINY WITH THE MONK WHO SOLD HIS FERRARI – THE 7 STAGES OF SELF-AWAKENING, a pathway to self-awakening that will help you to live your greatest life and claim the happiness, prosperity and inner peace that you deserve. This book is my go to book – it is highlighted, dog eared and has tear marks all over it – I read and re-read certain passages over and over again to keep reminding myself to live a life that is successful to ME and not as defined by anyone else.  It is a must read and should be added to your personal development library.

Here are a few of my favourite quotes from that book … it was hard to narrow them down to just these few:

-You are far greater than you have ever dreamed of being. And no matter what you are experiencing in your life right now, trust that all is good and unfolding in your best interests. It may not look pretty, but it is exactly what you need to learn for you to grow into the person you have been destined to become. Everything occurring in your life has been perfectly orchestrated to inspire your maximal evolution as a human being and bring you into your true power. Learn from life and allow it to take you where you are meant to go—it has your highest interests in mind

– We have morphed into people who behave selfishly, fearfully and hurtfully. This behaviour is not a reflection of our essential nature but is, instead, a reflection of the wounds we have suffered as we have left the innocence to which we were born and traveled along the journey of our days. Only people in pain can do painful things. Only people who have been hurt can hurt others. Only people with closed hearts are able to act in less than loving ways.

– Often, your lessons will not come easily. Suffering has always been a vehicle for deep spiritual growth. Those who have endured great suffering are generally the ones who evolve into great beings. 

– But we grow most from our greatest challenges. I’ve realized that these experiences were sent to help me clean up my act and me to move through my weakness. Life’s biggest hurts are, in truth, glorious opportunities for personal growth, positive transformation and reclaiming the authentic power you’ve lost as you left the perfection of infancy and walked into the world. Embrace them for the gifts they are.

Here is  free link to Discovery Your Destiny PDF  http://www.robinsharma.com/product-samples/pdf/Discover-Your-Destiny-1.pdf

And a link to his audio Book:  The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari –  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K1bZ9BD_o_Q

Tony Robbins

Screen Shot 2017-08-15 at 8.40.28 PMThis past Wednesday (August 9 2017) I was able to cross yet another item off of my bucket list.  For 3.5 hours I listened, absorbed and tried my best to retain every nugget of wisdom that Tony Robbins’ threw at us –  his incredible energy and monumental life/coaching skills.  It was most certainly a dream come true and one of the most inspirational, motivating experiences of my life.

If there are any of you who have not yet heard of this larger than life man, let me fill you in a wee bit – his work has touched the lives of top people such as Aerosmith, Green Day, Usher, Pitbull, Andre Agassi and President Clinton to name a few. Billionaire business leaders seek his advice as well; casino magnate Steve Wynn and Salesforce.com founder Marc Benioff are among those who call on him for coaching.

His shortest seminars are typically 50 hours in duration, but, in a small fraction of that time, he was able to transcend his most important life coaching skills to understanding our own personal mastery.

He makes no secret that he had a rough childhood.  This resonated with me.

“If my mom had been the mother I thought I wanted, I wouldn’t be as driven; I wouldn’t be as hungry,” he said. “I wouldn’t have suffered, so I probably wouldn’t have cared about other people’s suffering as much as I do. And it made me obsessed with wanting to understand people and help create change.”  – Tony Robbins

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The essence of his 3.5 hours with the 15,000 of us focussed on the core decisions we make at each point in our lives, how we choose to view them and what we do about them –  see pic of hand (lol – I forgot my notepad).

1) What are we choosing to FOCUS on?

2) What MEANING are we assigning to it?

3) And now that you know that, what are you going to DO about it?

Instead of trying to put my own spin on this and totally ruining what he is trying to convey I’m going to borrow this from Tony’s site because I feel it is that important …

“Is this the end of something wonderful or the beginning of something unpleasant? Are you being punished for your failure or rewarded for your success? The minute you decide to focus on something, you assign it a meaning and infuse it with feeling. How you define an event produces emotion and determines your inner feeling state going forward. The meaning you assign to any event, interaction or outcome defines the emotional tone of your experience and the feelings you generate throughout your life. Meaning equals emotion and emotion equals life. The meaning you give your experiences will always change how you feel — and the emotion you feel always becomes the quality of your life. Our memories are actually anchors to feeling states, images, sounds and sensations — all of these aspects rely on the meaning we give to them” – Tony Robbins

Get it?  Perspective is a powerful thing isn’t it? When you can reframe an experience, you can often change what happens as a result.

Eric Thomas

Last but certainly not least on my list is Eric Thomas (a.k.a ET).  He is a preacher and motivational speaker – this guy definitely has a different and unique way to inspire and connect with his HIGH energy messages! His voice is strong, loud and passionate!  It resonates so that you can’t help but believe that what he says is fact!  Go get what you want – period!  No excuses!   One of his most known quotes is When you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe, then youll be successful.”  ET is the epitome of hustle, drive, determination, and success.

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To wrap up these three spiritual bucketlist items – I am making plans seeing ET in Washington, DC on September 2 2017.  Hopefully I can make that work.

To end, let me ask you this – are your patterns helping or harming you?


Farewell Bright Lights, Big City!

One of the biggest decisions I made in the betterment of myself shaking up the status quo.  Having grown up in a decent sized city in South Western Ontario all of my life, I decided to move to The Big Smoke (a.k.a. Toronto, TO, Tdot, The Six – ok well you get the point!), population 6,054,191.  At that time I wanted fun, excitement and a change from what I thought was a boring, same ol’ same ol’, mundane life.  Millions enjoy living in Toronto, it’s an amazing city. It has bright lights, culture, history and diversity.

It was a blast for the first 2 years, Toronto is a great, vibrant city with so much to see and do, high end restaurants, cool bars, top of the line lounges, great shopping, tons of concerts, sporting events, live music, comedy festivals and a lot of amenities are 24/7.

Like I said, it’s all great … in the beginning.  It’s always fun being new to someplace … I remember when I would drive home after being out of town (which was quite regularly as the majority of my family and friends were still back home) and see the CN Tower lit up in all her splendour and think “wow, I still can’t believe I live here”, and honestly, I thought that till the very end.  I loved my house, a cute little 1000 sq ft two story I scored while the market was still relatively low and sold 5 years later for a pretty decent return on my investment (less the cost of renovating). Like most houses in Toronto it went into a bidding war and sold over the listing price.  I had a large backyard (with a pear tree, raspberry bushes and a massive hydrangea bush), which is very hard to come by (especially in Toronto, not one of its boroughs), I had 3 car parking, when most houses in my neighbourhood had permit street parking.

The reality of living in Canada’s second most expensive city set in after a short while, that is, once the novelty starts wearing off and you have to pick up your big girl pants!  Things you don’t know like: there are two land transfer taxes when buying a house in Toronto, the cost of housing is through the roof (purchase or rental), you pay for your garbage bin and you have to pay for extra garbage bags if you go over your limit.  The traffic is insane, it’s not uncommon to take 45 minutes to drive 10 kms.  Downtown is filled with a ton of one way streets.   There’s no parking and no stopping in the core between certain hours or you’ll get towed (yep, got towed one day after a live taping of The Social at Much Music), Event parking is a great price at $25.00.  If you don’t have the IMG_4957luxury of having parking at your house or your condo, the cost of a parking spot can cost you as much as $15k to $100k.  Congestion and construction are crazy, and there are so many road closures in the summer for either construction or some type of community event (Taste of the Danforth, Salsa on St. Clair, TOLI, Corso Italia to name a few).   Factor in the crime rate and that the cost of living is more expensive making it difficult for about 90% of the average Torontonians to live day to day,  I felt it was time for a change –  for my peace of mind and for my poor pocket book.  One of my favourite sayings is “the first step towards getting somewhere is to decide that you are not going to stay where you are” (unknown).  Pretty basic right?  I recognized that I wanted something different; I wanted contentment and financial stability.  Ironically, the quest for that change unfolded after a drive to Home Depot that should have taken me 15 minutes took me an hour and a half!

If you don’t like where you are change it!  You’re not a tree ~Jim Rohn

Enter Dauphin, Manitoba.  Population 8,200.  After what seemed like little or no discussion, my fiancé and I decided to lose the stress and get a better bang for our buck and move to his hometown. Some people said we’d have been better off throwing a dart at the map.  It really wasn’t a difficult choice to make.  I’ve always been a big believer Screen Shot 2017-12-09 at 9.59.33 PMthat we are the creators of our own destinies.  If you want something; make the choice to make the change to make it happen.  Period.  You have to start with identifying your WHY.  My why was tranquility, less stress, putting ourselves in a position for financial success, and getting the most out of our lives (I learned the hard way that it taken be taken from you in the blink of an eye, but that blog is for another day).   Before moving here, I’d never been, never visited and didn’t know much about it.  But, I did know that it was a huge downsize from my 6 million neighbours and that I didn’t have to spend hours driving to the beach (yes, Toronto has beaches, but, you don’t actually swim in them, they’re more for tanning and people watching!) and that within 30 minutes I could be at one of the most beautiful places in Canada (Clear Lake).  I’d get to be surrounded by the great outdoors, and it was nestled between two small mountain ranges (what? I had no idea the prairies had mountain ranges!) – the Riding Mountains and the Duck Mountains. So,  we loaded the contents of the last 5 years of our lives into a moving truck and set off on a new adventure.

It’s been 13 months since our move and, other than adjusting to some small town idiosyncrasies (like things closing at 6 PM and not being open on Sundays), it has been a change that I would strongly encourage people to make if you’re on the fence on whether or not to do something you’ve been debating about … whatever the change, whatever the reason.  The first thing people we meet say when we tell them we’ve moved here from Toronto is “why on God’s green earth would you do that”?  and I get it.  But, we all have choices to make every single day. Life is all about choices — choosing to feel blessed, choosing to feel grateful, choosing to be thankful, choosing to remaining the in status quo or choosing to make the decision that you need something different and to create a more fulfilling life for yourself.  We tend to seek happiness, when happiness is a choice.  I consciously chose happiness and went with it.  I figured “you can always go back home, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain”.  I thought,  what if we fall? but quickly replaced that with what if we fly?

We’ve settled in well to our little community.  We’ve met some really great friends.  For the most part, the folks are friendly.  We can get anywhere in about 5 minutes (8 minutes if the train rolls through town).  We have a much better work-life balance.  We purchased a 2500 sq ft home for a fraction of the cost, the cost of living is much more reasonable, we volunteer, we go on hikes after work, go to one of the lakes on the weekend, take a lot more trips now than we ever have and … we even spend time doing nothing!  Heck, this year alone .. I’ve kayaked,  snowshoed, cross country skied, and saw a real bear, moose and bison all for the first time and I read 9 books!

It is possible to have what you what out of life, you just have to be gutsy enough to challenge the status quo and chose to live YOUR best life.

Although I’m still feeling much love for the Tdot, we are quite enjoying our new life.