Option

Failure is always an option. It’s just not the preferred one.

Worldview

The things we see and experience produce feelings that form mental associations that connect with hints of reality, changing how we negotiate our way through life for better or worse. What we expose ourselves to creates short-term moods that turn into deep-seated attitudes that influence our perceptions and life choices for the long term. They…

Mothers

There’s a saying that I think is largely true for many of us—that you’re only ever as happy as your least happy child. I believe there’s another corollary—that children are only ever as happy as their mother or, as the case may be, the one who plays the maternal role in their lives. They can…

Hijacked

When you let your beliefs hijack your neutrality in what data you select and how you interpret them, you’ve fallen victim to confirmation bias. To correct for it, err on the side of disconfirmation. Seek evidence that challenges your beliefs—and raise the burden of proof for evidence that affirms them. ~Adam Grant Many of the…

Still Never Fails

Love never fails. That eternal, profound realization hit me long ago when my kids were small and I was still struggling just to keep my patience. How incredibly all-consuming and eternal. It extends universes beyond human politics, philosophies and bottom lines. It has no geographical limits or borders. It has continued to hold me accountable…

More To Me

There are endless hiking trails nearby, many much closer than this one. But I return to Big Mountain more often than not. It’s where I work out the stresses of recent weeks and the sorrows of recent years. “I climb so I can feel tired and sore in places other than my heart.” At first…

Reality

Reality exists somewhere between nothing is my fault and everything is my fault.

It’s Enough

Mother’s Day posts are often a litany of the expectations mothers try and fail to live up to every day. Most mothers I know don’t set out to be heroes—I know mine didn’t (but she was one anyway). Most of us simply set out to survive. Two of my babies are mothers now. They’re deep…

Can’t Know

We can’t know young people or assess their potential by looking at their grades or by sizing up their music or clothing or what they do on Friday nights. We can’t predict their futures by looking at their pasts. We can’t tell their motives by looking at their friends. We can’t pick out who will…

Beautiful Response

Stories of incredible suffering can be beautiful in hindsight, not because of the suffering but because of the beautiful response.

Bigger Picture

It isn’t unusual for “well-behaved” toddlers to grow up arrogant, narcissistic, and convinced that the world revolves around them. They’re hard to teach. As adults, they fail to see their negative, self-centered tendencies because they were never acknowledged and dealt with. Their deeper issues are overlooked or conveniently ignored, and they’re told how “good” they…

Conversation

Think people hear what you’re saying? I played a TED talk for my business communication students this past week and asked each person to identify the main point of the speech. They identified at least 20 somewhat related but fundamentally different assertions. Speaking is an art. So is listening. What’s heard is as important as…

Midnight Plane

Some things in life are like a midnight plane crash that happens when you didn’t even know your plane was going down. Someone slaps you back to consciousness and says, “You’re alive. You’re badly hurt, but you made it.” You crawl around in the dark trying to make sure all your family members made it,…

What We Know

We love what we know. There’s so much we don’t know.

Carve Our Paths

The words we say and sing out loud matter. They carve our paths before us. Speak well. Sing with purpose. Listen with care.

Watch

Love someone and watch them grow beautiful.

Too Much

To some, you’re too old to understand how things are. Too young to remember how things were. Too experienced to be innocent. Too innocent to have half a clue. Too educated to be in touch with reality. Too uneducated to comprehend the complexity. Too left to be right. Too right to care. Here’s to those…