My Miraval retreat with Alanis Morissette is next March (2nd – 6th in 2014) and we’re so excited to teach together. If you’d like to spend a week in paradise with us and learn about how to care for your creative self in ways that will radically change your life, join us for this special event. You can read all about it here.
I’m happy to be heading to London, Scotland, Austria, and Germany this fall for the I Can Do It conferences in October. For more info on each city, please visit my schedule page here.
I’m live on the radio this week (6/17 at 5pm ET/2pm PT). You can listen by visiting HayHouseRadio.com. You can also call for coaching at (866) 254-1579. I’d love for you to join me.
Have a great week!
p.s. – Need a little Divine Direction? Use the “Touch of Grace” button on our homepage here.
Topic of the Week
Why you need to stop settling for crumbs.
Use your voice. Speak up. Tell your truth. Stop settling for less. These are some of the messages woven into my book, The Art of Extreme Self Care. This past week, I had an experience related to these messages that touched me deeply.
After a long drive, I arrived thirty minutes early for a medical appointment on Thursday afternoon. I pulled into the lot, parked my car, and closed my eyes to rest before going in. A few minutes later, I opened them to see a beautiful young woman standing outside the front door with a baby in her arms and a small child sitting in a carriage at her feet. I watched for a while as she gently rocked the tiny boy while occasionally smiling at her daughter. I closed my eyes again and when I opened them fifteen minutes later, I noticed the mother still standing by the door looking a bit anxious. I wondered: Is she waiting for someone? Has she been standing there long? Are her children okay?
I decided to go over to check on her. Smiling as I approached, I asked if everything was okay. In a quiet, rather shy voice she explained that she lived almost an hour away and that she was waiting for a ride home from a public assistance car service. A doctor in the building had seen her daughter and they had finished their appointment two hours before. The car hadn’t shown up yet and, each time she called to see where it was, she was told it would be any minute. She went on to explain that she was also told to stand outside so the driver could see her.
I stood looking at her children as I felt anger rise up through my body. “You’ve been waiting here for almost two hours?” I asked in as calm a voice as I could muster. “Yes,” she replied. “This happened the last time, too.”
I immediately took out my phone and asked for the car service number. Then, getting a supervisor on the line, I inquired about where the driver was and explained that it was unacceptable to leave a mother with two small children standing outside of a building for so long.
Within a few minutes it was clear from the supervisor’s attitude that this young mother hadn’t been a priority. While I attempted to get his support, I finally gave up and began calling around for another car service. Just then, the driver pulled up.
As the woman gathered her carriage and bags, I held her little boy in my arms. Then, as I helped her and the children into the car, she looked at me with a loving smile and thanked me for being so proactive. I stared into her eyes through the window of the car as she rode out of the lot. I immediately thought to myself, “There but for the grace of God go I.”
I saw myself, many years ago – a woman committed to keeping the peace at any cost, a young girl in an adult body desperately trying to get her needs met without making any trouble. I never rocked the boat, never raised my voice, and rarely asked for what I wanted. Instead, I settled for crumbs when everything inside me screamed for a whole meal.
My reaction to this young mother’s situation reaffirmed the deeper reasons why I feel so committed to teaching the principles of Extreme Self Care. When we learn to speak up for ourselves, we feel compelled to speak up for others who haven’t yet found their voice. When we learn to stop tolerating bad behavior, we have a hard time allowing that same bad behavior to happen to others. When we accept a higher standard of living, we can’t help but want that same standard for others, too. And, most important, as we become more mature, conscious human beings, we begin to understand that we’re all connected and that we have a responsibility to care for one another.
I hope the young woman with two small children learned something from my intolerance that day. And I hope her example reminds you that you deserve to be treated with care and respect, too.
Yes, speak up, I say, graciously, and loudly. When you do, we all win…
Take Action Challenge
This week, speak up when necessary so you develop the skills to care for yourself and others. Look for at least one opportunity a day to use your voice. Offer your opinion during a meeting or tell your partner what you need to feel more supported. When you learn to speak up in little ways each day, you’ll find that you can count on your voice to be there when you need it in big ways, too!
I love this week’s video – it’s a moving story from “Yahoo! Studios,” about a dad who inspired teenagers to do something important for those in need. I bet you’ll love it, too. You can find it here. Thanks, Deirdre!
|Life Makeover For The Year 2013 (sm) is written and produced by Cheryl Richardson. If you have any questions or comments, or for reprint permission of this newsletter, please email:[email protected].
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