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I hosted Thanksgiving last year for over 30 of my closest friends and family. The day was full of gratitude and joy in many ways. But, it was also a whole lot of work.

If you’re reading this from the US, you are likely preparing for a holiday week ahead. For some, that might mean extra rest, but for many it will be just as (if not more) mentally and physically taxing as the average week. So the focus of this post is on being deliberate about managing our energy and planning for rest.

We have to prioritize getting what we need to stay spiritually full.

This week’s intention

This week will bring something different for each of us because Thanksgiving experiences are so varied – retail workers barely have a holiday at all, many of us deal with mentally and emotionally challenging relatives, traveling can be physically draining, and even the most excited hosts among us can succumb to fatigue by the time the last guest leaves.

My intention is to make time for rest and renewal.

Before you jump into all the planning, cooking, shopping, working, hosting and traveling that this week might hold, take a moment to consider how and when you will make time for rest.

Journal on the topic of rest and be as specific as possible. Ask yourself:

  • When will I be able to rest this week? What days and for how long?
  • What do I want to do during my rest time (e.g. read, sleep, watch television, mediate, take a walk, all of the above)?
  • Can I rest when I am around others or do I need to be alone?
  • Who do I need to discuss my rest schedule with in advance?
  • On days when no downtime can be found, how will I steal a few moments to reset (e.g. deep breathing exercises in the bathroom or praying silently for stamina)?
  • Is there anyone else I should or could help find time to rest?

I pray you have a pleasant holiday and I’m grateful for our time together. See you next week!


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I spent the weekend in the Pennsylvania mountains with almost 100 women, all there to be spiritually renewed and refreshed. I’m viewed as a seasoned professional in my work life. But at this gathering, I found myself well outmatched by an abundance of wisdom and life experience. This particular group of women are my teachers. They are preparing me for a lot of things to come, but especially for the hard work of supporting those around me through the painful life events that will inevitably occur more in the second half of my life. They are teaching me how to get ready for the work of holding up others.

Holding a loving space for those in pain is a job that can be prepared for, practiced and refined.

This week’s intention

As a leader and a colleague, there are many opportunities to care for the people we work with. The line between professional and personal relationships will inevitably blur if we show up to our workplaces open-hearted. During my career, I have seen my colleagues bury their parents, siblings, best friends, spouses and even children. They have had health scares, family emergencies, mental health crises and devastating divorces – and those are just the things I know about. Statistically, I am sure I worked with people dealing with domestic violence, substance abuse problems, financial hardships and a host of other things they dared not speak about at work.

My intention is to learn how to hold up the people around me when they are weak.

There will be times in our lives when we are not strong enough to hold up others. In those seasons, we pray there is someone there to hold us up. But when we have the strength to do so, supporting those people in our lives (to include our work lives) that are hurting is a calling in itself, and perhaps the most important job we will ever have. It is a job we can prepare for and practice by taking in the wisdom of the spiritually-seasoned around us.

This week, reflect on your ability and strength to care for others. Pray and journal about attracting and nurturing relationships that can prepare you for the miracle work of love and support. Consider the following:

  • List the people in your life that have (or may have) wisdom to share about how to support others.
  • How do you think they learned what they know?
  • Are you able to spend enough time with these teachers to observe and soak in their lessons? If not, is it proximity or your priorities that are holding you back?

That’s plenty for one week. See you next week!


Learn more about Simply Service, my work and me at Purpose and Kourtney’s story.


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If you live in the US, and own a television, you are well aware that Election Day is tomorrow. Hopefully, you are filled with pride and duty to be voting. But also, you may be looking forward to sitting down in front of your television again without inescapable attack ads. Like many, I know there has to be a better way to engage in campaigning. But since many people make decisions rooted in fear, the frightening ads continue.

Fear based decisions grow our capacity for fear. Love based decisions grow our capacity for love.

This week’s intention

Frankly, if able, voting is the most important thing you will do this week – physically, emotionally, politically and spiritually. There is a lot on the line for many people and I want to encourage you to use your opportunity to speak up for what you believe in.

My intention is to make choices rooted in love.

But once Tuesday has passed, shift your prayers and reflection to how fear and love may be impacting your life and work. Journal about your fears and your desire to work in love.

  • Is fear driving any of your current business dealings or career decisions? Are you worried about your future safety or security?
  • Are you engaged in a line of work that profits from fear or builds in love? How does that impact you personally?
  • Are you building a broad and diverse professional network? If not, what is holding you back? Do you harbor any fears about certain groups of people?

This is your private time and nobody will know any of your answers, but it is important to do this work and be honest with yourself. It is impossible to  live in love when we are making decisions anchored in fear.

Next week, we will return to the topic of relationships. In the meantime, vote and encourage others to do so as well. See you soon!


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Choosing love over hate is not a spiritual cliché – it is a habit built from discipline and by smaller life choices.  One of the many decisions that impact our ability to love is who we spend our time with.

I would not go back to high school for all the money in the world. During that time, I was constantly hiding my true self, especially my need for close loving relationships. I did (and still do) fall in love with the people around me, but I don’t mean that in the romantic sense. As a teen, I can remember being heartbroken over friendships that never became what I hoped they would or stopped being what they once were. One of the hardest lessons of my life, was learning to discern who was on my side so I could live and work with a more open heart.

The love we keep around us shapes who we become.

This week’s intention

Choosing which personal relationships to invest in is a major work decision. Our highest work will stem from an open heart. Yet, we learn to close our hearts each time we seek support from relationships that are not authentic and reciprocal. Next week, we will work on supporting others, but this week the focus is on cultivating the relationships that fill our spirits and build our capacity to love.

  • If you’ve tried to grow closer to someone, was that invitation of friendship enthusiastically accepted or are you doing all the work to move the relationship forward?
  • Do your mentors seem to have space in their lives for you? How hard is it to get a reply when you seek their counsel?
  • Are your new friends interested in learning who you are?
  • Are your old friends seeking to know you better and letting you grow?
  • Are the people you reach out to for support happy to hear from you and do you feel better from being in their presence?

There are a lot of reasons that great people fail to support and mentor us. This is not about identifying people who are bad friends or not worth our time – every soul is worth our time. This is about discernment and paying attention to the love you feel (or don’t feel) around you. Everyone will not be your supporter, but if you place someone in the friend or mentor category that relationship should be loving. We all need an abundance of love to do the hard work of service.

My intention is to grow, nurture and expand the loving relationships in my life.

This week, pray and mediate on love and discernment. See where you feel love present and where you don’t. You might be surprised to find unexpected people eager to support and mentor you, but you’ve been too busy trying to repair a relationship that is ready to be released or transformed into something else. Journal about the relationships you are investing your time and energy in? Who is truly on your side and are they preparing you to be a more powerful leader, mentor, and supporter to others?

Next week, we’ll stay on this topic – it’s a big one. See you then!


Learn more about Simply Service, my work and me at Purpose and Kourtney’s story.


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When we were children, we tried to navigate change on our own. Change still felt exciting and we weren’t afraid of what might come next.

For my son, the idea of leaving for college is a welcomed change. I’m the one that needs help with the transition. I’ll be moving from the hands-on mothering years to something else – something yet to be defined. I know this new season will bring new opportunities for me as well, but I don’t know what they will be. I see clearly what I’m losing, but it’s unclear to me what comes next.

People who have been where you’re going can help you find your way.

This week’s intention

Let’s not sugar coat change. Some seasons in our lives will change with beauty and ease, but those will be few and far between. Most changes are both out of our control and come with a loss of some kind. Sometimes we have to find a new normal not because we chose to or want to, but because we have to. I work with many people going through these kinds of changes in their work life – a job is ending unexpectedly, a new boss negatively changes the culture, or a need to care for a child, family member in distress or aging parent forces a career pivot. Sometimes they are retiring or dealing with a medical issue.

We all need mentors and caring souls that have been through the life experiences we are about to go through. These people help us find our way, but first we have to find them.

Are you going through a life or work transition right now or might you be in the near future? Are you ready to think about what comes next and if so, who do you know that has been where you are and came out the other side?

My intention is to seek wisdom from the experiences of others.

This week, let’s take time to simply open our hearts to the wisdom of others. Next week, we will focus more on finding mentors, but for this week the only task is to get ready. It’s a small shift, but a big step. Pray about wisdom and your ability to hear, see and discern it. Meditate to quiet your mind and settle your spirit. Journal about wisdom – what it means to you, who has it and why you want to attract more of it.

See you next week!


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Windingroad

My oldest son has a plan. His plan is to design his whole life by the end of this year. Lately on our car rides alone, he resurfaces out of the electronics to share with me his latest thinking on the entirety of his career – what he will study, the opportunities that will lead to, and the things he will avoid in life. He thinks it’s important to have a detailed plan, but I already know the pitfall of plans. Experience teaches us not to rely too much on them, because we are lousy at predicting the future.

The goal of a spiritual life is to trust, surrender and live in peace.

This week’s intention

I love witnessing the power unleashed when our labor is channeled to a dream. Dreams uplift and inspire. But without surrender, dreams can lead us to planning, scheming and living in anxiety.  Against my soul’s direction, I can get caught up trying to plan out the future of my work. I know that I want to work in joy, peace and service, but I still need help to surrender my work’s outcomes. I need help to dream in the human world AND live in peace in the spiritual one.

My intention is to trust that the experiences and opportunities that are meant for me will come to me.

Even typing the intention for this week, I had to stop and read it over several times. Was simply committing to trust the truest intention? I wasn’t sure if I should add something about what not to do. I thought about adding an intention to:

  • NOT predict and plan out our work’s path
  • NOT try to maneuver to opportunities that may not be meant for us
  • NOT define success ourselves when we don’t really know what would be most fulfilling
  • NOT worry about whether we’re doing the correct things

I thought about adding each of these intentions, but I realize now that we don’t need them. If we set our intention to trust in the things we believe, the rest will take care of itself. The opportunities that are meant for us, will come to us. But more importantly, we won’t spend our precious time worrying when we could be enjoying our gorgeous, simple lives right where we are in this moment.

I hope you will continue to dream, but set your intention to trust that the opportunities meant for you will come to you. I hope you will meditate on peace and mindfulness this week especially. Look for ways to enjoy the experience of your work without being tied to the outcomes. Let’s pray for each other and our intention to surrender and live in peace.

See you next week!


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There are two types of children – those that clean their room when told and those that play in the mess instead. I was the latter one. For me, there was a sense of freedom that came with being messy. Leaving my things wherever I wanted proved that I had the power to do so – and I resisted giving that power up. Yet when I got married, I had to learn how to give my husband the gift of clear and clean spaces in our house. He needed order to feel at peace, and I needed order to create a beautiful environment for our lives.

Order and beauty are not the same thing, but they are connected. In our workspaces, order gives us the feeling of structure and calms anxiety, while beauty uplifts and invites inspiration. You can have order without beauty, but you cannot have beauty without order.

I want to feel inspired and energized at work. But during the last few weeks, I’ve let my office become cluttered with miscellaneous papers (that reminded me of things still undone) and various items that needed to be returned to the places they belong. I forgot how important my physical surroundings are to my spiritual connection.

A beautiful environment prepares us to discover the desires of our soul.

This week’s intention

The spaces we work in can support inner contentment and inspiration, or they can leave us feeling anxious and disconnected from our joy. It is not a coincidence that we feel relaxed the moment we walk into a spa. The environment was purposefully designed to calm and relax our senses.

Making a change is not the hardest career decision; the hardest decision is choosing what we want in the first place. If you are constantly surrounded by clutter or items you find unattractive, broken or useless – it is having an impact on your ability to know the desires of your soul.

My intention is to live surrounded by beauty and inspired to pursue what I truly want.

This week, let’s take time to improve our physical work environments to whatever extent we can. Ask yourself:

  • Is my space in order? If not, remove, store and reorganize as you feel moved to.
  • Are there things in my line of sight that I find beautiful? If not, bring in new items (plants, office supplies, décor, etc.) or rearrange what you already have to bring it closer.
  • Are there other ways to engage my senses at work?
    • What textures do I like to touch?
    • What scents do I want to smell?
    • What colors spark my peace or joy?
    • What memories do I want to keep top of mind (e.g. wedding photos, pictures of family or friends, art projects, beloved books)?

Look for simple ways to add beauty into your space and see what ideas and thoughts are inspired. Do you suddenly feel drawn to nature? Is quality time with loved ones calling you? Do you need more adventure in your life? Is your soul begging you to rest?

Create a space where you are inspired to listen to the unique needs of your soul. This especially matters in our workspaces where we spend so much of our time. Whether your space is an office, coffee shop, home, classroom, factory, studio, vehicle or even the great outdoors – work to shape your environment and pay closer attention to what comes up during your prayer and meditation time.

More on discovering what we need next week!


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My relationship with joy is fairly new. For much of my life, I spent time longing for things and exploring the places that hurt inside; I knew well what I wanted less of. What I wasn’t in touch with was what my joy felt like. Perhaps for the first time in my adult life, I am routinely overwhelmed by a state of peace and simple pleasure. This feeling is unfamiliar, but I know I want more of it.

When we pay attention to the joyful things we already have (and want more of), we are careful to not lose those things as we move toward change.

This week’s intention

The most common career mistake is to correct one problem with a new job, only to inherit a new set of problems when we get there. I’ve done this several times over my career –  left a bad boss to work for a better one, only to find I hated the actual work of the new job. I’ve left a boring job to go to a soul-crushingly busy job. I’ve changed companies just because I needed more money, but found it hard to endure the hyper-competitive culture I had placed myself in. I could not take my attention off what was wrong, disappointing or frustrating long enough to consider what I already had and what I might want more of.

This week, we are revisiting the topic of change in our work lives. The first step toward change is obvious – to consider if we are even ready for a change in the first place. Is there room for change in our lives? But, the second step can seem rather counterintuitive because it pauses the process of change instead of moving us toward it.

My intention is to discover and connect with the things that bring me joy.

For me, my coworkers bring me joy. They are supportive. They are infinitely interesting and talented. But most importantly, they are genuine. I will never be content in a work environment that doesn’t have colleagues like this – and I learned that the hard way. They bring me joy.

As you continue to assess your current work life and your possible need for change, take time this week to reflect on what is bringing you joy right now. Take time to connect with joy, get to know joy and invite joyful experiences to hold your attention. If you journal, this is a great week to focus on the simple things you encounter at work that exhilarate you or give you a deep sense of comfort.

More on this next week!


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Tents

We saw it coming for some time, but this week it was confirmed that my youngest son is finally taller than the oldest. Clearly, they are both perfect in their mother’s unbiased opinion. Neither is winning nor losing, but I still got the sense that my oldest felt like he was falling behind a little.

Life (and social media in particular) can make us feel like we are falling behind in our work life if we aren’t constantly announcing a new success, new project or new job. And don’t get me wrong, those moments are exciting. Yet, the real work is accomplished in the humble and quiet points between each change.

Last week’s post focused on accessing if it was time for a change, and for some of you it might be. This week is about choosing to be satisfied with where you are – if where you are is where you need (or have) to be. Maybe you love your current job or you have too much on your plate right now to even think about adding a change at work. Some of you are already in fairly new jobs or haven’t accomplished what you came there to do. It’s okay to be content with where you are – and it’s important to stay the course.

There’s nothing worse than being exactly where you need to be, but still feeling dissatisfied and restless.

This week’s intention

We will talk more about how to move toward change next week. Change gets all the glory, but it is during times of stillness that we fulfill our purpose. This week’s intention is to be deliberate about cultivating contentment and staying the course.

My intention is to find meaning in my experience and trust the process.

The goal of our time together is to be deliberate in your intention to get the most out of every work experience, so the world gets the most out of you. Between times of change, ask yourself how can you make your work life more meaningful and infuse joy? Perhaps you want to be more deliberate about your gratitude practice, forgive a boss or coworker for a previous grievance or connect more deeply with the people around you? Is there a skill you have the opportunity to learn that can be leveraged in the next assignment? Does this job provide much needed security, flexibility or time to recharge?

The hardest part is to pause long enough to think about it. Which is why I want to encourage you this week to simply create the space to do just that – think and appreciate.

See you next week!


Learn more about Simply Service, my work and me at Purpose and Kourtney’s story.


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Fall Leaves

Somehow it still surprises me whenever the seasons change. I see it coming on the calendar, but fail to prepare for the real life process of letting the weather, my wardrobe and the family activities shift into a new experience.

In our work lives, we go through different seasons as well – times when we are intently focused on building greater security, times when we crave riskier passion projects or times when our personal lives will require more of our attention. Yet often, our circumstances shift and we fail to notice that a new season has started. We may continue plowing along with mismatched expectations for the role work can and should be playing in this new phase of our lives.

Your life stage and your work dreams are intimately connected.

This week’s intention

Assessing your unique work needs requires spiritual reflection and there is no “one size fits all” plan for what you should be doing in any particular life stage. I’ve known people to birth successful businesses or thrive in demanding jobs in the midst of life circumstances that would make me pause on my work aspirations, while they aggressively charged ahead. So don’t assume the stage dictates the changes you need to make. Instead, set the intention to take time to consider whether the seasons of your life are shifting and how that impacts what you need from your work.

What has changed or will soon be changing in your life?  Some examples may be:

  • You are exhausted, managing a family crisis, have a high-needs child or are taking care of an aging parent – is it time to take a safe or more stable assignment to refocus your energy at home?
  • Your children are older, your parents are gone or you’ve stepped back from another significant obligation – is it time to birth a new dream with your expanding capacity?
  • You’ve finally saved enough to be reasonably secure or you’ve grown bored with the status quo – is it time to take more risk in your work life?
  • You’ve been battered by grief or weathered a personal crisis (health, financial or emotional) – is it time to use the wisdom you’ve gained toward a new purpose?

These are only examples of shifts you might be going through.

My intention is to examine my life and assess the role work is meant to play during this season.

This week carry this intention with you throughout each day. Bring it to your prayer and meditation time. Set aside time to journal specifically on this topic. Ask God what is next for you and expect to hear the answer.

More on this next week!


Learn more about Simply Service, my work and me at Purpose and Kourtney’s story.


Meet me here to connect more often.


Know someone else that needs inspiration in their work life?