Soul food

When the well is dry, it’s dry. Even with the best of intentions, you won’t get a single drop no matter how often you try. When the fridge has nothing tasty to offer, repeatedly closing and opening the door won’t cause treats to materialize, no matter how hungry you may be. I have personally tested the latter thinking that if I just shift my perspective, I might see something I didn’t notice before. No dice.

When you push yourself for extended periods, you risk drying up your well of internal resources. Shifting perspectives shows mindfulness and a maturity in self-management. It opens up possibilities and choices. Yet it’s not always a matter of working harder, thinking longer, focusing stronger.

Sometimes you simply need to get groceries. Maybe take a walk in the rain and get soaking wet.

You won’t get far when you are low on energy, connection or hope. The premium is too high a price to pay when you keep shunting yourself to the back of the line. Replenish that which nourishes you. Let the rains rejuvenate you. Take a step back. Take a breather. There’s only one you and we need you.

Where will you bring replenishment and nourishment into your life today?

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You among many

Quick! Write down all the roles you play in your life, personal and professional. All the positions you fill. Business owner, athlete, parent, child, partner, friend, sibling, sport coach, director, administrator, care-taker, breadwinner, mechanic, instructor, organizer, social coordinator, confidante, mediator…

One day, I woke up to the realization that I was valued for what I could do in my role more than for who I am. I had delivered in the different roles I played. It cost me. I paid by meeting others’ expectations of what they wanted me to achieve on their behalf.

Freedom comes from sharing who you are no matter what role you play, not the other way around. Playing a role without sharing who you truly are and your unique gifts… deadly.

Look at your list of roles. Which one is the real, deep-down, soul-core You? That’s the You we need more of now.

Coming home – Guest post

Madsocial pay it forwardLast spring, I started participating in a weekly tweetchat about motorcycling (#motochat). Rania Madanat is #motochat’s co-host and a social media whiz-bug. I’ve never met her in person, but what struck me the most about Rania is that she’s a true connector – not only through the social media scene, but also through her transparency and, dare I say, vulnerability in sharing real moments and insights into her life. Last summer, Rania tweeted throughout the time her friend’s motorcycle was broken down at the side of the road and they remained stranded until the early morning hours. The unspoken golden thread that ran through her funny tweets about the situation, including tweets to seek towing assistance, was her loyalty to a friend. I’d ride with Rania any time. I’m pleased to bring Rania Madanat to you in this week’s Seismic eShift.

1.       What would you say is your Compelling Purpose in your life? How is it showing up in your life?

I am often told that I connect people who normally would have never come together. This really made me think about how or why I’m doing that. I’ve come to the conclusion that I just enjoy the company and conversation of others from all walks of life and disciplines. This really was an eye opener when it comes to my life and who I am because I get involved in so many various things. So I guess my purpose in life is to meet as many people as I can, do as much as I can; learn and educate others about my experiences and hope it impacts the world in any way shape or form.

2.       How does riding a motorcycle align with your values, guiding principles, or compelling purpose? Is there a riding story that illustrates something special, meaningful, funny, dorky, or thrilling for you?

Motorcycling has really opened my mind and has helped me to find my inner self worth. It’s taught me to be courteous, how to be a better citizen, how to be that person who stops to help a stranger stranded on the side of the road, how to pay it forward daily, what camaraderie truly means, and what trust truly feels like. All of these things are what we are taught at a young age, but as we grow older and deal more with the public, we tend to lose sight of these guiding principles. I make it an effort every day to follow these principles, whether online or in the real world. It makes me feel good and that to me is living!

I’ve done plenty of touring in the last almost 14 years of riding. In 2011, I was riding from Milwaukee, WI to Coatesville, PA by way of Canada. I rode around Lake Michigan and into Michigan towards the Lake Huron Port of Entry into Canada. As I stopped to fill up on gas before entry, a lady came up to me and said, “You’re alone? I wish I had the courage to do what you are doing.”

After leaving the gas station it dawned on me that I wanted to live by water. The energy of people living by fresh water or the ocean seems to be so relaxed. I also realized that as much of the U.S. as I had seen, it really was all the same. The same stores, gas stations, museums, schools, local government offices, etc. What truly made a place different, whether it was by water or mountains, was, of course, the people! If your environment puts a smile on your face and you enjoy the company of the people in that environment, then you’re home. My goals are to move closer to water and to people who dream, who travel, who love life no matter how hard it hits or how great it gets.

3.       What’s your next adventure? Why is it important to you? What is ‘adventure’ for you?

My next great adventure would be to fly back to my homeland of Jordan where I was born and ride a Harley through the Holy Land. Imagine being in the ancient city of Petra on a motorcycle. Sigh! This trip is important to me because I haven’t been back since I left the country at the age of five. I would love to visit with family who lives there and finally meet all my motorcycle friends who I have connected with via social networking sites. I always believe that visiting where you’re from helps you to figure out who you really are. Adventure to me in one word is “Living”. Living everyday spontaneously is adventure.

RANIA MADANAT
Co-host of #motochat (Wednesdays, 1:00 pm PST)
@MadSocial

Breathing underwater

Triathlon swim newbie to coach: “When do I breathe?”
Coach: “When you need air.”

Sounds simple, but there’s more to breathing than inhaling. There’s also exhaling. Each act constitutes one-half of a full breath. Holding your breath is the least helpful option.

Maybe you’re treading outside your comfort zone, like being underwater. You might be holding your breath waiting for something to happen, shift, transform. Notice if this is happening.

You can’t breathe in fresh air if you haven’t breathed out the stale air. You can’t bring in new successes and experiences if you hang onto old belief systems. Learn to exhale.

Are you breathing yet?

The perfect comeback

The perfect comeback. What a great feeling when you have it ready right when you want it. It feels great to have the last word, doesn’t it? It shuts the other person up, shuts them down. A comeback is one way to finish an argument. The truth is that it doesn’t end anything. The hurt remains.

Instead, what if we responded with: “I’m listening. I’m here.” No one seems to expect that in this world of one-upmanship. It’s often enough to stop them in their tracks.

Listening opens the door. Being present is a two-way invitation to be real. By bringing your whole self forward without expectations, you leave space for the other person to bring their whole self… whatever that might look like. (No expectations…)

Listening is the perfect comeback.