The most significant was a recurring dream that spanned 12 years. The tiger dream started when I was 6 years old and concluded just before I turned 18. This dream had such an impact on my life that it propelled me forward in a way I could only have imagined.
I want us all to stand up and face our fears (whatever they might be) in the face with a bunch of courage. I want you to feel held. To feel heard. Can you imagine what kind of impact we will have on the world once we stand in our power with grace and courage?
With the arrival of my daughter, I went through typical first-time-mom fears. Is she eating enough? Is she sleeping enough? Is she hurt? Uncomfortable? Cold? Hot? Oh dear lord, am I doing this all wrong?
How many of you remember your first school crush? I remember mine. I waited for the tiniest glimpse of him in the hall on our way to lunch, and at the end of the day, I hurried out front just in case he didn't ride the bus and I might have a chance to see him on the steps talking with his friends.
After surviving breast cancer about seven years ago, my mother-in-law (Becky, an amazing individual) found out that her cancer is back and has spread throughout her body and even into her bones. Needless to say, when those of us close to her got the news, we were stunned.
Our mistakes and failures are gifts, gems, guideposts in our learning and growth as people. So embrace failures, mistakes, screw ups and shortcomings because they not only make us uniquely who we are, but also teach us powerful lessons like the nine below.
The brave women around me have showed me their strength in their beginnings: choosing to go back to school, making decisions to start taking care of themselves physically and emotionally, asking for help with depression, starting new businesses, choosing to adopt, going back to work.
There I stood at the foot of the Ferris wheel trying to decide what to do. The idea of leaving Aaron alone, where I could see him but not reach him if he needed me, frightened me more than was probably healthy.
Little did my disability know, that when I jumped out of the airplane, I left it behind. With every passing second that I was in free fall, I felt every layer of fear, resentment and shame I've experienced during my life, peeling right off of me.
As a society, we are obsessed with change -- changing ourselves and others. Just look at the hundreds of blog posts, articles and infomercials touting all sorts of advice on how to live a better, happier, sexier or richer life.
I find myself grappling more and more with the prospect of death. Mine, yours, his, hers, all of ours, in this land of over 50. To tell you the truth I should say, the land of late sixties, because that's where I am now.
We have all done it. We try to say something that is helpful and reassuring. We try to say something that will take away someone's fears or doubts. The problem is it usually doesn't work. And sometimes reassurance does the exact opposite of what we intend.
I wanted to reflect on the events of the past five years of my life, which masked themselves as "distractions," and send a letter directly to what has kept me from succeeding all along: fear. Fear is one of the biggest obstacles that any of us will ever face.
The fear behind us? It's the fear that we will die without living life at all. We won't love the way we should, we won't work at the job we want, and we will just accept what comes to us as though we have no choice. That is by far my greatest fear.
This kind of "psychological courage" is essential to our health and happiness because it allows us to face up to our lives. To acknowledge and even confront the addictions and lies, fears and mistakes we make so that we can move into them and beyond them.
We are often focused on consequences right now. Thinking of how something will impact us beyond the present moment helps put the risk into perspective. Many times you will find that a setback won't matter a year from now -- or even next week. So why not take a chance?