Thursday, March 10, 2011

Spring Cleaning: Ourselves

Ah, sure . . . it's that time of year to consider our closets, storage and pantries. What do we keep? What do we throw away?

Purging is such a satisfying task for me. Whether I am reorganizing my closet or taking inventory of my life, the end result is gratifying.

I have encountered recent conversations with clients who have not taken time to organize their lives. Sounds funny, even peculiar, to some of us. How could those people who are so successful in their business and professional lives be so UNorganized in their personal lives? Going home has no appeal! Living day-to-day at home is terrifying.

Here is an exercise to get things rolling:

1. Lay your life plan out as you would a business plan. Yes, in print. Seeing our lives in an organized manner in front of us gives us realization and rest. It doesn't need to be complicated, just write it down! What do we want in six months, a year, five years?

2. Confer with your partner. Headed in the right direction? If not, discuss and regroup.

3. Set the plan knowing that things do change, but at least you’re planning. Put it in motion and as I say, "eat that elephant one bite at a time.”

Time to organize. Purge old conceptions that "life is difficult.” And yes, it would be good to clean out your closet. The cleansing is so gratifying.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Marriage vs. Friendship: One in the Same?

I am always excited to see friendships develop into relationships – and find marriage.

The best marriages I know, including my own, speak to the beginning friendship. Oh sure, we’ve all had infatuations that landed flat in time, but as our elders have taught us, the relationships that started in friendship are the ones that last.

But somehow, usually through the side roads of rearing children, hardships, or seeing to the needs of others, that basic foundation of friendship gets forgotten. So, when I am leading seminars, we talk about those beginning friendships and get back to the basics.

When I am golfing and my game is off, I go back to the basics where the power in playing lies. When I correct my basic swing, my golf ball goes in the direction I am aiming. When I am shooting guns and missing targets, I go back to the shooting range and site my gun in. I get my sites back on track, and I immediately improve.

So it is with marriage. When you get back to the basic elements of friendship, marriage improves. Direction and sites are back! What are a few basics to remember?

· Listen. Have empathy for your partner.
· Try to meet the needs of your partner.
· Put the effort in, and not just for a short while.
· Share the good as well as the bad. Have fun together by sharing an interest.

This is a start. Rekindle your friendship and make plans for this weekend to do something fun and exciting with your best friend, your spouse!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

And the Oscar Goes to . . . The Power of Two

I watched the Oscars Sunday night, and the overpowering message during the acceptance speeches was thank you, spouse, for the opportunity to do my job as best as I could, knowing I had the support of you behind me, with no criticism in the time I spent doing it, and balancing my home life as I was not always there.

OK, so that is paraphrased, but the message came across in many emotions, and words of praise and thanks. Perhaps Christian Bale said it best when he choked up upon thanking his wife: “And of course mostly, my wonderful wife. My wonderful wife who’s my mast through the storms of life, I hope I’m likewise to you, darling, and our little girl who’s taught me so much more than I’ll ever be able to teach her. Thank you, thank you so much.”

I would imagine that there were many issues that had to be dealt with by the spouse, and many phone calls that refereed the home field. However, it happened because each person in that marriage/relationship made a conscience decision before the project to pick up the slack, to work on this project to make their lifestyle better, and to be partners in making it happen.

That’s the power of two… in Hollywood, in the corporate world, and in our own lives.