Be As Willing to Stand Up as to Bow Down

Read an interesting commentary somewhere about just how over used the phrase, "I am humbled." is wherein the meaning has become cliche.  And yes, humility is a virtue as long as you do not use it as a cliche and a way not to stand up for yourself, use your voice and do not permit yourself to play victim. In a recent coaching session with a senior level executive, I was privileged to have her share how ....

With leadership (you are a leader in your life, that of others whom you officially or unofficially believe you take them or share a better way) comes the need to be humble as you serve others.  Servant leaders know this is a tenant of propping others up, picking up the towel for another, listening with empathy, sharing compassion.  It is also key to mindfulness as we minimize our ego and lend ourselves to a true life force.  

To be able to stay mindful is easier said than done.  How often I hear from my coachees, "they push my buttons."  I jokingly respond, "we are not computers, we do not have buttons." On a serious note, yes we do have "hot buttons."  By the way, not all buttons are the same.  Some are smaller such as the "irritation button", a bit larger is the "frustrates me button", and then the big red hot "makes me angry" button.  Learning to distinguish your emotions so you can articulate them clearly to yourself first to discern if you want to share for the common good or not.....Once you discern your emotions and thoughts around the button pushed for you ask yourself which of these three choices apply?  1) I can accept it?  2)I cannot accept it so I will have a conversation to change it, or Neither of these two well work so I will opt to let it Go? Really let it go!  


Necessary Endings for Necessary Beginnings 2017!

Here we are all ready to engage in a new year...So what does this really mean to engage?  I think it means, we address the necessary endings to make room for necessary beginnings.  Fire breathing wo/men --- this makes for fertile soil where the new can take root and blossom fully. 

With an esteemed friend and colleague I spent an afternoon and evening launching a "setting intention" exercise.  Good food, colorful pens, journals and burning paper which held our necessary endings was a highlight.  The fire breathed in our need to end comparing, judging, neglecting, settling and other barriers to our best selves.  We breathed in fresh air under the stars adding beginnings that included settling higher, more rest, alone time, accompanied time, daring moments...etc. as we cleared the way for setting intentions.

My process started toward the end of 2016 where I had to initiate a transformational moment wherein I legally changed my name. The name I had written for 60 plus years appeared differently in spelling and in order of my given names on my birth certificate. To ensure my third act plays out correctly and my estate is in order, I needed to take this ensure all my names matched on paper.  I felt reborn.  And as if to reassure me of rebirth was eminent, Facebook had incorrectly sited my birthday so there I celebrated rebirthday.

But most importantly I filled with Spirit in love, abundance and hope for a new year in a new time in a well worn space called Santalynda with a "y" (officially) with a necessary ending and new beginning.  

And you...?  Whether self-initiated or by circumstances, what has to end to create space for what is to be birthed at work, at home and at play in 2017! If you set goals, ask yourself, which have the highest payoffs, which have a high tradeoff, take note and decide with intention.

Wishing you continued blessings and reminding you that you can't grab at something new with something old left in you hand.  Release and unleash to your higher good!




      Jelly fish - Monterey Aquarium 2016 SM™                             

      Jelly fish - Monterey Aquarium 2016 SM™


Cafecito Coaching Circle

In collaboration with several other Latinas across generations 23 -64 years of age we began a coaching circle called “Cafecito con Santa.” 

This circle came out of conversation that reminded me that it was usually around the kitchen table that “Comadres”, “Madres” (mothers), “Hermanas” (sisters), “Tias” (aunts), “Primas” (cousins) would dialogue and support each other.   So since I coach and make a great café con leche (latte) we gathered to honor our culture that promotes a paradigm of collectivism, a relational orientation and interdependence that acknowledges wisdom of ancestors and across the generations.

What inspired me to engage in this intimate way came from living and experiencing living multiple realities as a Latina in America (a chapter in --The Diversity Calling: Building Community One Story at a Time)

Far too often I was a one and only, Latina and sometime woman in the room, especially at work.  In coaching and speaking with many other “fire breathing women/mujeres que repiran fuego”  a common thread resonated yet again in this vein.  My philosophy of life,  that in lighting someone’s else’s path we invariable light our own way, leads me to continue with the wholehearted intention of continuing dialogue, self-exploration and continuous learning in community and in service.

So to this end, we began our first session discussing our intention, introductions of who we are and then moved on to what we do with who we are.  It was heart warming to share in candid and meaningfull ways our responses to two important questions:

Do you feel disenfranchised?  What contributes to it?

How or whom do you attribute your resiliency? What keeps you moving forward?

The quality of our questions and their simplicity can help us do the archaeological dig we need to better define ourselves for ourselves in the midst of feeling disenfranchised, ambivalent and lonely.

Clearly defining oneself is a revolutionary act.  It means we must examine ourselves in context: culturally and with relation to "other". We learn and see ourselves in societal context and separately. Angelina Jolie puts it quite well:  "Figure out who you are separate from your family, and the man or woman you’re in a relationship with. Find who you are in this world and what you need to feel good alone. I think that’s the most important thing in life. Find a sense of self because with that, you can do anything else." 

We invite you into the conversation.  Please share your responses to these questions.




If you celebrate...

If you celebrate, I want to wish you the best holiday season ever!  Christmas for me is my favorite Holi-day for it means renewed Spirit within me and hope for the world.  To be honest, I gave equal ferver to decorating and gift buying (I am a gift giver).  This year for the first time in my good long life, I have no desire to decorate or gift buy.  Brings to the fore front to me what many people have shared with me, namely that the "Hallmark" commerical angle of the holidays was not for them.  Quite honestly, I thought them "scrooges."  Well here I go now sharing the same sentiment and not at all being a "scrooge."  Instead this is signifcant for me interms of redefining for myself what this Holi-day means to me for at this time and season of life. What speakes to my heart and soul is--a time of prayer.

I believe in prayer and know that our world needs it more than ever.  We see the carnage and sacrifice of goodness and humanity on every land.  And yes, we need to pray equally for all the good there is in our world and the "saviours" that care, share and show up.  So this holi-day season may you pray simply and dream big for you, me and our world.

May you be the light you are meant to be in this world giving hope and love.

To err is human, to forgive is Divine

I recently posted a newsletter in which I made the mistake of stating " as 2016 draws to a close..." clearly a year ahead of myself.  The good news was that it created a response swell which made me feel as good - people are reading my posts..  So to stay within the theme of gratitude I realize  in making mistakes we learn and we share and for that I am grateful.  

The Gratitude Experiment

The Gratitude / Goodie Jar Experiment, 2015 this was my invitation to you.  I hope you planted the seeds and now get to see the gifts that life has shared with you in gratitude.

Collecting Good Things in a Jar was my blog post in January 2015 at the beginning of this year and now it’s time to see what lessons, gifts and gratitude you reap.  So in December near year end I invite you to open the jar and slowly and joyfully read your notes.  If you chose a “buddy” to share the experience once you’ve taken a look and reflected on your abundance that can make it sweeter yet.  Below is the invitation and the picture of my jar.  Would love to start a conversation of your energy and good news.  Make your statements and if so inclined go to Facebook page:  fire breathing women/mujeres que respiran fuego.

Relationship Trumps Social Media Technology!

You be the judge of whether or not face-to-face relationship trumps social media technology.

Today we all need to be technology-savvy and are pretty much “on” 24/7.  Some of us do better than others in setting boundaries so that technology doesn’t overshadow our relationships at work, at home and at play.

Are We Talking in the Mirror

As I attended yet another women’s networking group, I just had to ask myself, are we talking in the mirror?

This is a question worth pondering as women continue to meet in affinity groups to strategize and support each other seeking career advancement.  I think we need to ensure we make the strategy complete by being inclusive of our male counterparts as well.

Women Torn Between Leaning in or Leaning Back!

Recently I enjoyed one of my favorite actors, Robert De Niro in an excellent movie,  The Intern.  By the way, Anne Hathaway was stunning as well.  If you have not already seen this funny and spot on creative movie about generational challenges chock full of light-hearted intensity, you must.  Several themes emerged; the retiree looking to rewire for continued purpose in life, the role of men as stay at home partners raising children and a young emerging “fire breathing” woman who successfully launches her own company only to find herself torn between leaning in and leaning back.