What do you Cherish?

Remember this golden oldie?

That’s my theme for this February: CHERISH. I love the tender, sweet feeling that this word (and that melody) inspires. I am excited to notice what I lovingly adore, what I treasure, what is close to my heart.

How about you? What is it that you hold dear?

Cherishing my connection to you,
Mary

Cultivate a Practice of Gratitude

WomanGirlHandsHeartSunshineVintage600x400What a Fall it has been! Just when I thought my schedule was settling into a routine, something surprising would get added. Sometimes it was a happy event like a new, exciting work opportunity. Other times it was an unexpected tragedy such as the death of a dear family member. I am so grateful for all the reminders I have plugged in to my day-to-day life to remind me to BE HERE NOW. That focus keeps me in the vibrant reality of the moment — whether the moment is delightful or heart breaking. When I practice — BE HERE NOW — it gets easier and easier to relinquish my age-old habits of worrying, ruminating, or blaming when life doesn’t unfold as expected.

During the month of November, GRATITUDE is the experience I plan to cultivate. How about you? What are you focusing on this month?

Warmly,

Mary

Transition Time

Picturesque Autumn landscape of sunset colored trees and warm colored leaves that covers the ground  ** Note: soft focus, best at smaller sizes

After a glorious summer filled with plenty of adventures (planned and unplanned), it is time for me to transition into the routines of fall. Sometimes the return to routine is refreshing; the predictability and regularity keeps me grounded and moving in the right direction. Other times it’s disorienting and overwhelming because it adds another layer of deadlines and time pressure.

In this month’s Your Growing Edge teleclass, I will share what I have learned about effectively navigating this transition.

I am looking forward to fall. How about you?

Warmly,
Mary

Savoring Summer Sunshine

Mary Enjoying Summer GrassGLORIOUS!

That is the best way to describe the most recent phenomenal streak of weather in my neck of the woods. The days are sunny and warm with bright blue skies and no humidity. There is just enough breeze to be comfortable in the shade. Every time you step outside, you can’t help but feel good. That summer sun just lifts my spirit.

Instead of coffee breaks, I sneak out for a nature break every chance I get. I am savoring these last days of summer and storing up plenty of summer sunshine memories for those cold, dark January nights!

How is summer nourishing your spirit?
Mary

Mary

Busy as a Bee

Busy as a beeExciting news from Coach Olk HQ! My new product, Activating Your Inner Champion, was one of 3 featured products in CHOICE, The Magazine of Professional Coaching. WOW! I am speechless. I’m sure I’ll recover soon and be blabbing about it all over the place. Stay tuned and in the meantime, click here to read about it.

May is full of all kinds of busy-ness personally and professionally. The end-of-school year events (field trips, concerts, track meets, banquets) merge with the onramp to summer activities (soccer games, picnics, graduations, vacations). In my day-to-day business operations, I am redesigning my website, welcoming new clients, exploring new training opportunities, and learning how to talk about Activating Your Inner Champion!

With all that busy-ness, it is so easy to get knocked off center. I can get so uptight, worrying about the things I need to do, the things I am not doing and should be doing, and all the things I forgot to do!

YIKES! Can you relate?

That’s why I invited Rick Carson, author of Taming Your Gremlin to YOUR GROWING EDGE, my FREE TELECLASS. Rick will share his wisdom for stopping that internal churning and reconnecting to our hearts.

Please click here to join Rick and me at the teleclass on May 14th at 11:30am CT.

Busy as a bee,
Mary

Planting the Seeds of Spring

flower seedling in a pot ready for planting

Isn’t it great to have so much more daylight this time of year? Excitement is in the air and signs of spring are beginning to sprout.

I am planting lots of seeds this month.

1.  I am thrilled to be sharing my Inner Champion audio learning program with the world! Now that the audios and journals are finished, I am dreaming up all kinds of ways for people to use it. Look for more details from me this spring.

2.  I am hatching plans to refresh and reinvigorate my website — new content, new photos, and a new look that works on any digital device. I even have videos I want to share!

3.  My free monthly tele class is on March 12th and it plants the seeds for the Power of Play in our livesJoin me!

4.  And I am looking forward to designing and creating beautiful, relaxing space inside and outside our house!

Feels like spring fever is setting in and I am eager to see how the seeds I am planting now, flourish and grow in the upcoming months.

Here’s to spring,
Mary

Energizing and Refreshing Retreat Experience

RainbowsThis fall Mother Nature has been putting on quite a show in the Midwest. We had a long run of warm sunny days, beautiful blue skies and glowing gold, orange, and red trees. And rainbows! I have never seen so many fall rainbows. It has been breathtaking.

Our house has been full of activity: decorating the yard, carving pumpkins, creating costumes, picking out treats, and making plans to celebrate with friends. October was an exhilarating month of transition.

November has been and continues to be a busy month of celebrating. We are looking forward to gathering with family and friends for Thanksgiving. I will be celebrating my 29th birthday again. (wink, wink) And the most important part of November: Our 25th wedding anniversary. It seems like we just got married last year! My husband and I are thoroughly pleased to celebrate such a remarkable milestone.

All this transition season busy-ness motivated me to create some quiet, restorative time for all of us. Michelle Burns and I have cooked up an energizing and refreshing retreat experience to entreat you to SLOW DOWN and immerse yourself in the experience of GRATITUDE! I hope that you will join us for the event. All the details are listed on my Upcoming Events page.

Yours in gratitude,
Mary

Devoted to Fun!

Mary WaterskiingIt is so much easier to be spontaneous in the summer. Probably because we don’t have the same intensely rigid daily schedule that comes with the school year. More flexibility in our schedule means more opportunities for playtime! Last night I joined a spur-of-the-moment football-throwing contest. Two weeks ago I tried water skiing (successfully! that’s me in the picture) for the first time in 30 years. Tonight, it looks like we might ride bikes to our favorite local pizza joint.

These spontaneous good times really lift my spirit and dramatically lower my stress levels. (Not to mention, the physical exercise is good for my entire family!) And the last 3 weeks have been challenging. One of my fit, healthy brothers had a heart attack last month. My Mother-in-law was hospitalized twice for pneumonia and is bouncing back very slowly. My husband was out of town (enjoying his long planned bike trip www.bikeodyssey.com) and I was shepherding and schlepping the teenagers to their summertime commitments. Oh yeah – and running my business too.

Each moment of impromptu, purposeless play really cuts through the stress and strain of life. Play injects my heart with a shot of joy that sustains me. That burst of delight reminds me that even in the midst of hardship, life is good.

Incorporating play into your daily routine is beneficial to you, too. Would you like to make play a habit in your own life? For the rest of August, follow my Facebook page for daily ideas on how to PLAY. Very few of them will require special equipment or physical finesse. These play prompts will create a smile and melt the stress away in the middle of the day.  Join in the fun and post your experiences and your own PLAY ideas on my Facebook page, using the hashtag #PowerOfPlay. Let’s start a PLAYvolution!!

Mary Mustache Your serious DEVOTEE to PLAY,

Mary