By | Overwhelm, Presence, Stress, Work/Life Balance | 4 Comments

I don’t know about you, but this year seems to be off to an especially busy and stressful start.  Today, with this poem shared at a training event, I was reminded of the need to balance our (never ending!) day-to-day demands with adequate space or breathing room.  I hope this serves as a gentle reminder for you, too.

Feel free to share your thoughts:  Where do you need to add space between your logs?  In what ways would adjusting the blend of wood and air provide you with a healthier balance of light, warmth and sustenance?



What makes a fire burn

is space between the logs,

a breathing space.

Too much of a good thing,

too many logs packed in too tight

can douse the flames

almost as surely as a pail of water.

So building fires requires attention

to the spaces in between,

as much as to the wood.

When we are able to build open spaces

in the same way we have learned

to pile on the logs,

then we can come to see how

it is fuel and the absence of the fuel, together,

that make fire possible.

We only need to lay a log

lightly from time to time.

A fire grows

simply because the space is there,

with openings in which the flame

that knows just how it wants to burn can find its way.

~ Judy Brown ~

More than a Conversation

By | Coaching, Presence, Relationships | No Comments

I am a coach…

I don’t just listen to what you say.

I feel into the space between your words.

I look into your eyes.

I notice your energy.

I see your shape.

I lean into your emotions.

I sense your intention.

I hear what you don’t say.

I interpret your silence.

I feel you, the real you.

The one underneath the social expectations.

I call you forth to speak your truth.

I am a coach… it’s more than just a conversation.

~ Jane Warrilow ~

These are the words shared at the end of our last 2016 International Coach Federation (ICF) Chapter Board call – how appropriate as we, individually and as a team, reflect on the work we do.  As I consider not only the coaching profession but the world at large, the ability to be truly present for and with others is needed more than ever.   And, no, it’s not easy.  In the midst of our busyness, technological distractions, and competing demands, showing up fully – in body, mind and spirit – takes effort.

What would it look like if each of us, in our own special role – as parent, friend, colleague, citizen, leader, and, dare I say, politician – took time to slow down? To show up for others?  Without judgment?  Without an agenda?  Without the need to control?  No doubt the world would be a more compassionate, supportive, productive, and healthier place.

The invitation:   Consider your own relationships – at work and at home.  In what relationship(s) would being more present, open, and a better listener make a difference?   When’s the next time you might call on your “inner coach” to cultivate more than just a conversation.