I have a complicated history with the word SELF and I think it's because the emphasis is on self that transitions to SELFISH.
As a female in my generation and heritage, I was taught from an early age to put others before myself, to nurture and care for others, but to minimize what I needed or felt.
“Selfish” was a nasty label to put on anyone, and especially to be avoided as a woman.
As I matured, I had to unlearn a lot of the teachings of my earlier life. I have come to realize how critically important it is to take care of myself.
In fact, self-care is the opposite of being selfish because when I am at my absolute best, at the peak of my performance levels, I can do so much more for others.
Self-care is not one single area of focus, it is a balancing act of physical, emotional, financial, and spiritual care.
Self-care might be scheduling a facial or investing in getting my hair done.
Self-care might be hiring a coach,...
Pandemic 2020 has been hard but it has also given me some valuable lessons and gifts. I discussed this topic recently with my co-hosts on Transformation Decoded’s video blog series.
Another benefit of staying home and staying safe has been extra time to clear up some clutter and review old files. I came across the blog below that I wrote a few years ago. It’s great to be reminded that abundance is all around us and we can transform any situation into an opportunity.
It is impossible to be “ON” 100% of the time. I don’t always feel brilliant or sparkle. There are days that I just want to wear old PJs and fuzzy socks, binge watch TV comedies and eat salted caramel gelato.
Fortunately, most days I love my life and I know deep in my belly that I was always meant to be an entrepreneur. On the days that I’m tempted to hit the snooze button, I whisper to myself “Isabel, this is no way to build an...
When I hear the phrase ‘work life balance’, I chuckle and get a mental picture of a teeter-totter. You know, like the ones from our childhood where you and a friend or, possibly a rival, sat on opposing sides of that board balanced on a fulcrum.
When two friends played together, we used our energy to push off and create a joyful flight for our companion, hair flying and falling in the air, and giggles and squeals rippling out into space. We reciprocated to give each other a fun ride, taking turns initiating lift off.
However, if your playground nemesis shanghaied the other end of the totter, they could easily manipulate your experience by keeping you dangling high in the air, and then without warning, maliciously jumping off the teeter totter causing you to plummet fast to bone jarring impact with the ground.
As a woman who raised a family and a business at the same time, my life often felt like a merry-go-round and teeter-totter circus. I juggled children,...
Why does the word ‘retired’ irritate me?
I suppose it is because as a child in the boomer generation, I was indoctrinated that I was so damn lucky to live in a society that planned for my obsolescence.
Success had been defined for me as the privilege of stepping off the stage and out of the spotlight to make room for the next generation. Like an aging actor, I would be thanked for my service and ushered to a back seat to watch my understudies take over.
That was the part I was handed - but I went off script and refused to leave the stage!
At age 65, by definition in the retirement play book of 21st century North America, I have already retired and unretired multiple times.
Each time I have reached the point of ‘enough!’ of a role, or I feel that I can no longer grow in that identity, I chose to bring that part to a close; retire from it, and audition new roles, stages and experiences.
Only by trying out new roles, and testing...
Who am I now that I am an author?
When I made the commitment last year to write a book and to expose my personal life journey to the world, it was an exhilarating and terrifying decision.
I felt like I’d strapped myself a the first-row seat on a death-defying roller-coaster. Once the ride started, I could not stop it. I felt sick to my stomach when I realized how fast the days would race with the deadline only months away. I wanted to squeeze my eyes tightly shut and not see myself careening around corners, heart in throat, as I white knuckled through creating an outline and flow, writing, writers block, writing some more and editing, fretting over edits, editing some more, et al.
My emotions revved, plummeted, and lurched forward as I struggled to feel wise, witty, creative, and stay disciplined enough to complete this magical mystery tour with a manuscript worthy of the investment and the promise I made to myself to create value, entertain and inspire.
I bought my...
Do you need a machete to be a trailblazer?
a person who blazes a trail for others to follow through an unsettled country or wilderness; pathfinder.
Can you visualize a trailblazer hacking their way through thick vines and dense undergrowth, seeking a way out of a confusing and often frightening place?
Navigating my way through Womanhood Wonderland these last two decades has many parallels with jungle expeditions. I’ve often felt like that adventurer trying to hack a path to a clearing where I could stop and look around and really know where I am and who I am at the present age and stage of my life.
Unlike Jane in the Tarzan movies, I don’t have a figure-hugging leopard skin wardrobe to wear as I trapeze through life, but many times, I felt like I was barely holding on as I pendulumed between stages of my Baby Boomerness, career, relationships, hormonal, health and physical changes.
As women today, we face so many...
What is an Encore Career?
The term is credited to Marc Freedman, founder of Encore.org and explains
the idea of a second career, one that starts later in life and often has
a more personally fulfilling mission and is typically financially motivated.
When you reach the end of a script that has been handed to you, can you leverage decades of life experience into a signature encore performance? Whether that encore role is a new business, a new career, a new cause or the passion that you’ve kept on a shelf, YOU have the opportunity to write a different script that is uniquely yours.
Have you sometimes felt like an imposter in your life or that you were performing a part that someone else cast you in? This is the time for change!
Are you tired of rehearsing living and auditioning happiness? You are now ready and perfect for your fulfilling & rewarding ‘best life’ yet!
Do you wonder how to take control of your life instead of being...
I woke from a frightening dream about being marooned in deep fog.
The sensations of deprivation, loneliness, and disorientation were disconcertingly familiar and more nightmarish than dream-like.
This night terror rekindled memories of difficult periods of my identity crisis, and the struggle to answer; ‘Who Am I Now?’
Fatigued from chasing the elusive “Next Me”, while much in my life was changing, the challenge of reinventing again made me want to pull the covers over my head.
To the world outside of my gloom, it appeared that everything in my life was easy-breezy, bright and sunny. I pretended I had it all under control. Most of the time my family and friends were fooled. Sometimes, I fooled myself for a while.
Behind the veil, everything was grey and...
Sunday, March 8th is International Women’s Day 2020, a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.
We should celebrate women every day but I’m glad that the spotlight is on women and their impact on this day every year!
I’m thankful for the reminder to stop and reflect on the contributions and leadership of women throughout history and around the world. If not for the resilience of women and our drive to keep going through adversity, the human race would have less and be less.
Recently I read an article about cultural icon, Shania Twain and her return to the spotlight after overcoming major difficulties. Ms. Twain was a major influence on women of my generation. She had us on our feet, dancing with girlfriends and singing at top volume. Shania was a catalyst for joyful and fierce femininity!
Like Shania Twain and so many other women, I've had comebacks after major...
For most, or all of your life, you’ve been cast in roles by others and played parts based on timing, obligation and necessity.
You have been someone’s child, a student, a team member, a branch on a family tree. You were instructed, you were modeled, you conformed.
You have been an employee and or a boss, a member of communities, a volunteer, a leader, a citizen. You contributed, you adapted, you compromised.
You have been a parent, a caregiver to family members and others, a port in the storm. You balanced, you juggled, you sacrificed.
You studied, achieved, failed and tried again.
You have been a consumer, a spender, a saver, an investor.
Life and influencers thrust these roles upon you. Conscious choice was much rarer than imposed decision or circumstantial opportunity. It was expected; get an education, get a job, start a family, follow the rules.
You’ve fulfilled the roles, played the parts as directed by society and...