The Power of “No”

autumn 12.12.12“No” is a powerful word.   But it’s taken me years to understand and appreciate its power.


My natural inclination is to say “yes”.  Yes, I’ll help with that project.  Yes, I can take on a new client.  Yes, I can help lead that new networking group.  Yes, I can bring dinner to that family with a newborn.  Yes, I can skip my yoga class to volunteer in the classroom.


This propensity to say “yes” worked for a long time.  And then it didn’t.  Then I had to learn how … Continue reading

Welcome Autumn!

Today is the Autumnal Equinox – when day and night are equal length.   For me, these twice-yearly equinoxes are a reminder, an opportunity, to reflect on balance.

American Heritage Dictionary defines “balance” as “A harmonious or satisfying arrangement or proportion of parts or elements, as in a design.“

I love thinking about balance through this lens.  If our lives include a variety of parts or elements, how might they be arranged so that the result is harmonious and satisfying?  Here are some of my favorite questions for reflecting on balance.

What … Continue reading

Shedding Commitments

For so many of us, each day can easily be filled to the brim, packed with commitments around work, family, friends, home and self. But all this activity doesn’t necessarily translate to satisfaction and fulfillment, and it’s pretty hard to savor and appreciate each experience when we’re running from one to the next.


This autumn I’ve taken this to heart, and have begun taking steps to shed commitments that don’t reflect what’s most important to me. The most impactful change was stopping running my mother-in-law’s weekly blood draws from her apartment to the lab. Instead, I asked the visiting … Continue reading

Inspiration by Autumn: Clearing Out Clutter

As trees begin to change color and shed their leaves, I’ve found inspiration to do my own personal “shedding”.  I’m ready to shed the clutter, commitments and conclusions that are no longer serving me to create space for something new to emerge, and to re-focus my energy on the parts of my life that bring meaning and fulfillment.

I got started a few weeks ago with my anti-clutter campaign…and it feels fantastic.  I got rid of clothes I no longer wear, organized the linen closet, cleared out my in-box, organized my PowerPoint files, and even inspired my … Continue reading