Archives for posts with tag: identity

Lately, I’ve been dropped into the world of architecture. Architects design the plans that are the blueprint for homes and buildings. They assemble all the elements… your chosen location, your local laws regarding construction, and your needs and dreams for the plan of your home.

There is something interesting about this process… Every project has multiple solutions for creating the desired outcome. Architects are experts at surveying the big picture, visualizing solutions and identifying the one that BEST suits the situation. Architects are not only creative, but practical… they have to produce results. Choosing the best solution is what makes them effective.

I was wondering the other day if we could apply the same logic to designing our lives. We have all been in a place where we need to create change, but are unable to start. It seems daunting…

Lets apply their process to our own journey… Starting with your dreams and desires, work backwards and identify behaviors and activities that could help move you toward your goal. Get into the details of it… What are the long-term and short-term activities that will lead you in the right direction? Write them down, even better make a technical diagram of what they look like physically. Add pictures and drawings to illustrate your path. What comes 1st, 2nd, etc. See them on paper in a format like a blueprint or flow chart, use big arrows and be specific. Look for multiple solutions on your chart. Meditate on the possibilities. You will eventually see the best choice. It will be clear on paper and in your mind. Choosing this solution will EMPOWER your journey, and it will feel PEACEFUL.

Becoming an architect in life is brilliant! It’s like your blueprint for navigating change. You know where you are going and how to get there.

What are you waiting for? Your new life is waiting…ūüĎ£

Sent from my iPhone

A friend forwarded me this image the other day… ¬†It made me laugh out loud! ¬†I have an August birthday, so I am a Lion by birth. ¬†Also, because I used to have a cat named Mosie who looked just like the kitty in the picture. ¬†His body resembled the kitty, but his personality was definitely like the Lion. ¬†We spent 8 years together as roommates, before he died. ¬† ¬†He was not my friend, or my son, he was my roommate. ¬†We struggled and fought and ignored and occasionally loved each other, but he was hands down the most loyal companion and highly protective. ¬†¬†He had this whole self-image thing down. ¬†He saw himself as a LION every day. ¬†Even when he clearly looked like the kitty!

Working in the fashion industry is all about image. ¬†It’s constant scrutiny and very subjective. ¬†One day you are IN, the next you are OUT. ¬†It can take its toll on your self-image over time. ¬†I often wonder if it’s really a good idea to bring young men and women into the industry so early… ¬†You have to be so strong inside.

Seeing yourself ¬†for the natural beauty inside is the most wonderful thing, it brings you peace. ¬† ¬†When you express yourself in your most authentic form in the world, no amount of outside scrutiny can deplete you. ¬†Living authentically is a source of beauty 24/7. ¬† All that other outside stuff is just fluff! ¬†So… ¬†How are you going to see yourself today? ¬†Why not take a lesson from Mosie and see yourself as the perfect LION that you are? ¬†‚ô•

Yesterday, I spent the entire afternoon at one of my favorite places in the world… ¬†the BEACH! ¬†It was just a beautiful day. ¬†There was a slight breeze, the water was warm and crystal clear, the sky was blue, the waves were gentle… ¬†You can visualize the day, right? ¬†It was heaven on earth.

When I spend time at the beach, I always observe the beauty that is evident all around me. ¬†Yesterday, I became engrossed with picking up beach rocks, not shells, the rocks! ¬†What a day it was for my search. ¬†I found so much variety. ¬†There were all shapes, sizes, colors, textures, you name it. ¬†Each one was more beautiful than the next. ¬†While some were pure in color, they had beautiful shapes. ¬†Others were expertly colored and textured. ¬†The sizes ranged from tiny to enormous… can you see where I’m going with this?

As I walked along picking them up for my collection, I was struck by how much these rocks reminded me of people. ¬†Each one was so unique and a complete masterpiece, just the way people are. ¬†Mother Nature has the most diverse palette and she paints each of us expertly. ¬†It’s our job to recognize uniqueness and beauty in each other.¬†

Try looking at your brothers and sisters of the world with a different lens.  Can you see the masterpiece in front of you?  Acknowledge them with wonder and love. ♥ 

The world is full of people facing tough times, especially these days. ¬†I’ve been thinking a lot about what it means to love and support someone through tough times. ¬†It’s easy to share the laughs and celebrations, but what happens when someone you love suffers illness or hardship, you know, Tough Times…

Tough times bring with them big life lessons accompanied by strong emotions. ¬†I’m thinking of anger, sadness, jealousy, guilt, shame, and there are a bunch of others. ¬† How do we love someone who is facing all of that? ¬†I’ve lived through some difficult situations myself, and I was humbled by the people who stepped up to see me through the storm. ¬†These are the ways they were there to lift me up.

They sacrificed for me.  A good friend knows how to sacrifice for the sake of others.  There are times where you will need to give MORE of yourself and your resources than others.  You must give to your friend freely, without thought of repayment.

They didn’t judge me. ¬†Of course, in hindsight, it’s always easier to see where we went wrong. ¬†The decision or decisions that lead to the tough situation some how becomes clear after the fact. ¬†A good friend is just present for you, without judgement. ¬†You will do enough judging of yourself, you don’t need someone else to do it for you.

They were honest with me. ¬†Remember, we talked before about friends being able to see your situation more objectively. ¬†They are going to tell you the truth. ¬†Believe me, it’s not always easy to hear. ¬†A good friend is willing to risk your anger, in order to tell you the truth. ¬†Later, after your situation has calmed down, you will be grateful they had the courage to tell you the truth.

They made my friendship a priority. ¬†Once you see a friend is in need, you will have to make a point to check on them regularly. ¬†It doesn’t have to be 24/7 support, but calling or stopping by more than usual is necessary. ¬†People in tough times isolate themselves. ¬†They don’t want to face the problem or the people they hurt, so they shut out the world. ¬†A good friend is able to see through the isolation and bring them back into the world, by making their friendship a priority.

How do you define friendship in tough times?   How do you reach out to others when the tough times belong to you?♥


P.S.  My Mom and I worked on this entry together.  She had some excellent points and I thank her for sharing all her words of wisdom.

The dictionary defines collaboration as “to work jointly with others or together especially in an intellectual endeavor”. ¬†Collaboration in my world of fashion means that all parties involved in making the garment from design through production are putting their best collective effort into making a fantastic garment. ¬†I absolutely love when this happens! ¬†I regularly walk through the department stores looking at the garments that I have worked on in the development process. ¬†Occasionally, more often than not, I end up purchasing something because I know that every person who touched this garment in the development process did a superior job. ¬†These garments are like little works of art to me. ¬†They are an example of collaboration at it’s best.

Collaboration, for me, is surrounding myself with people who are better than I am, in any situation. ¬†Do you know why? ¬†Because they elevate me. ¬†It’s so simple. ¬†I want to be around people and environments that push me to the next level. ¬†This can be in a work situation or in a personal situation. ¬†The power we have when sharing ideas and working together as a group is limitless…

How does collaboration fit into your life? ¬†Do you see it as a benefit? ¬†Have you grown from these experiences? ¬†I would love to hear some stories…

Ok people, ¬†I feel the need to elaborate on yesterday’s post about THE LIST! ¬†I’d like to tell you about my list. ¬†Here goes…

I have been carrying around a small piece of paper in my wallet for the past 10 years with all the characteristics that I am looking for in a potential partner. ¬†My written list has about 25 items and it is in detail. ¬†I have an additional list in my mind that is laminated. ¬†By laminated, I mean it is built to last and not too flexible! ¬† I prop it up next to me (hypothetically, of course!) every time I am in a social situation where I am meeting someone new. ¬†With in the first few minutes of talking with someone, I simultaneously check my mental list. ¬†I’m telling you that there are very few men who can meet this list. ¬†Yet, I continue to carry it with me, like a shield of armor to keep people away. ¬†This is so hard to admit, as I would like nothing more than to welcome love into my life. ¬†In addition, now you know just how crazy I am!

Here’s the funny part, my last boyfriend had 90% of all the qualities I was looking for on my written list! ¬†The laminated mental list was another story. ¬†You know what, it still wasn’t enough! ¬†Sadly, we had to part ways. ¬†I’m telling you this because THE LIST is flawed. ¬†There is a certain amount of magic about love. ¬†It isn’t always going to appear in the form you’ve described in your list. ¬†If you never look up from your list, you might miss some pretty magical people… ¬†

Let go of THE LIST.‚ô•

P.S. ¬†I am going to tear up my written list and melt my laminated mental list… I will keep you posted!

I was watching Dr. Drew yesterday. ¬†He has a show on TV called Life Changers. ¬†He talks mostly about relationships, from the male perspective. ¬†It’s kind of interesting, as we are all so used to watching women talk about their issues all the time. ¬† Anyway, the theme of the show yesterday was dating makeovers. ¬†He took a man and a woman and he showed them how to meet and date in a positive way. ¬†It was interesting, because both of them were working from THE LIST. ¬†You know a list of requirements that we all have when searching for a potential mate. ¬†

SO, he did an experiment, where he used the man’s list, (ex: single, over 5’11”, willing to cook for me, etc) to eliminate the female audience members until he had found a “perfect” match for the man. ¬†It was so funny, even in the small audience sample, he narrowed his choices to 2 women within the first three items on the list. ¬†Everyone in the audience started to laugh! ¬†He hadn’t even gotten to the heart of his list and he had already eliminated a large majority of his potential dates.

THE LIST has to go! ¬†It keeps your mind closed to the hundreds of potential partners that would share their love. ¬†We’ve got to be open to other people as a whole, to investigate and really see what they are like inside, before we can decide if they are good for us. ¬†Let go of the list the next time you meet someone new. ¬†Just get to know them as they are and see what develops. ¬†You might be surprised!

Well, let me just jump right in… I am human, I make mistakes and much to my dismay, I hurt people. ¬†The last part, about hurting people is the worst of all. ¬†You know why I do all of these things? ¬†Because I am human and imperfect.

When I realized that I was on the executive board of the Perfectionist Corporation, I was horrified. ¬†I mean, the first commandment of Perfectionism, is that you don’t make mistakes, therefore you can’t hurt anyone. ¬†Perfectionism also keeps you from living life fully. ¬†I mean, you can’t just go and be in the world, what if you make a mistake or the wrong choice? ¬†So perfectionism is isolating.

When you recognize that YOU are only human, you also have to recognize that your friends and loved ones are human also. ¬†So, they are going to hurt you. ¬†They are going to make mistakes and display unflattering characteristics. ¬†You will have to accept them for who they are, just as you will have to accept yourself as you really are…warts and all! ¬†You will have to just open your heart and love, without the perfection. ¬†This statement is so huge for me. ¬†I mean, I just recently acknowledged my deep roots in the Perfectionist Corporation. ¬†I see that my allegiance to this group keeps me stuck and isolated from people and places that are very enriching.

The beauty in all of us as human beings, is that we are perfect in our imperfection. ¬†We are unique. ¬†Loving the whole, instead of the just the perfect parts, leads to greater understanding and peace. ¬†I wish this for all of you, but mostly I wish this for myself…as it has taken me a long time to get here.‚ô•

P.S.  for all of you who I have hurt, knowingly or otherwise, I am sorry.

Ok, now I’m really thinking…for the past two days I’ve written about counting friends, love, health, etc. as assets in the bank account of life. ¬†The spiritual bank account has as much or more value in your life than the financial one. ¬†You know how we are all always wishing we had a bigger paycheck, car, house, computer, wardrobe…. ¬†What about the other bank account? ¬†What about wishing for more love or better health? ¬†Even more radical, what about being peaceful and happy with exactly where you are and what you have in your life AND recognizing that these things have tremendous value?

I am challenging you to make an inventory of your spiritual bank account. ¬†You know, like a list of assets and liabilities that you would provide your accountant for a financial analysis. ¬†I want you to get into the details of this list. ¬†Of course you will list your loves, your friends, your home, etc., but I also want you to list the minute details that make your life rich. ¬†For me, I’m thinking immediately of the flowers on my patio, my favorite sweatshirt, a hot shower at the end of the day. ¬†These things will all be in the assets column. ¬†Now, make another column for liabilities. ¬†This will probably be a little harder. ¬†What things, people or situations in your life deplete your spirit?

Once you have made your columns, do a mental tally.  The obvious conclusion is that the asset column should out weigh the liability column.  The difference between the two columns is up to you.  Maybe you are ok with a 50/50 ratio.  Maybe you have an 80/20 ratio.  Maybe your ratio is 30/70.  The point is, you are defining your spiritual wealth.  You will probably be surprised at just how wealthy you are!  Even better, you can make adjustments in your life to change the percentage.  Wow, this is very liberating.  All this time, I have been overlooking the real wealth in my life searching for a bigger house and more income.  I am actually humbled by this experiment.

How does your spiritual bank account look? ¬†Are you already a ¬†millionaire? ¬†I bet you aren’t far from it…

Yesterday’s blog post about the value of a good friend got me thinking…what does it really mean to be wealthy? ¬†In case you didn’t read the post from yesterday, I spoke about considering good friends as assets in the bank account of life. ¬†Today I was thinking about the definition of wealth. ¬†The dictionary defines it as “abundance of valuable material possessions or resources”. ¬†We are all trying to make sure there is a big pot of gold at the end of our lives, but is that really what you want to be defined by, material possessions? ¬†What if we defined wealth in a different way?¬†

The first thing that comes to mind is love.  A wealthy man or woman is surely surrounded by love.  This love comes from a variety of sources, family, friends, pets, community, etc.

Second, I think of health. ¬†Anyone who has ever suffered a serious illness knows the value of health. ¬†It can’t be replaced, you can’t buy health, you can only repair it.

The third thing that comes to mind is a home.  Some where you can recharge your batteries.  A warm bed for rest, a kitchen window for daydreaming, a little garden for growing things, etc.

Fourth I’m thinking of our deeds and actions in life. ¬†The times when you comforted someone, or you inspired someone. ¬†Maybe you fostered a child, or a dog. ¬†You might have been a volunteer at your charity or church. ¬†These actions are not only for people you know, but for those who are strangers as well. ¬†Did you help someone who was down, either physically or spiritually? ¬†You see my point.

I’m sure this list could continue. ¬†You probably have your own list. ¬†What I want you to see is that a man or woman who has material wealth, may not be considered “wealthy”, because they have no love, or health, or they have negative deeds. ¬†Start thinking about your spiritual bank account. ¬†How would you fill it? ¬†Share your ideas with me.‚ô•

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