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Posts tagged ‘brene brown’

Finding my strong on the mountaintop

Can you be strong when your world falls apart?

As I awoke to the morning sunlight streaming across the ocean and into the bedroom window, I was reminded that Hurricane Irma had just hit my life. Sadness set in before the sleep was out of my eyes. How can you be strong when it feels as if your whole world has just fallen apart? I’ve survived some tough stuff, but I’m not sure I know how to do so while being strong. What does that even look like?

I got out of bed and made my way outside to the wrap-around porch to drink my morning coffee and watch the tide slowly roll out, exposing the sea life on the ocean floor. Will those critters survive this tidal change, I wondered? What do they do when they become exposed and are gasping for air?

As I sit rather zombie-like on the porch starring out at the sea, I feel sad, mad, worried, empty, scared, tired, overly emotional, and…more. Feelings too exhausting to think about. And yet I find myself preoccupied with one question — what does it look like to be strong when the world as you know it is changing forever and not by choice? When bad things and challenging times pummel you with gale-force speed like an unforgiving Hurricane batters the shore, and you can’t fix it or change it.

This is not the first time I’ve been pummeled, of course, but this feels like the worst pummeling ever. (Most of the details don’t matter to the story — we all have times we experience this). What strikes me today is that I don’t think I’ve ever pondered this question in the midst of a pummeling.

Rather, I wallowed, cried, complained, and suffered alone in my hurt and pain — drowning it with work, food, alcohol — and hiding from the world. And when other people experienced pain and suffering — I was the first one to show up and I gave, and gave and gave at the expense of myself. I tried to fix it.

None of this feels right to me now. None of it fits my new Lori-in-the-equation life. And yet the pull to go back to bed and bury my head in the covers is strong. The pull to eat everything in sight — even stronger! I have a lot of experience with that.

But perhaps this is the next evolution of transformation for me. An opportunity to find my strongest and best self and learn to cope with “hard” while loving and giving to her. So, I get curious again.

Perhaps the real question is: Can you be strong when your world falls apart? Read more

Faith, courage & love

Requirements for braving the wilderness & living healthy, happy & whole

There is no other blog I could write today. I had the privilege of being in the audience last night at United Methodist Church in Minneapolis, MN, as the amazing Brene Brown kicked off her book tour for Braving the Wilderness, The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone.

Those of you who frequent this blog, know that I’ve not only been inspired by Brene Brown’s work around courage, vulnerability, love, belonging, shame and empathy, but her best-selling books have mirrored my growth AND my personal understanding about my transformation journey. In her message, I am blessed to learn, grow and evolve as a wholehearted human being, and now to share that experience and perhaps help others in doing so.

The values that Brene Brown speaks about — faith and courage — I share. I try to live daily by the core values of faith, courage and love — and it has perhaps never been more challenging than right now. Read more

Does every cloud have a silver lining?

Reflections on a tough year and impending holiday. Not the blog I wanted or expected to write.

“Every cloud has a silver lining.” What does that mean, I wondered as a friend said those words in an attempt to comfort my heavy heart? Where did that phrase come from? While I get the spirit of it — there’s a bright side to every situation — it made me wonder if I really believed it.

Sometimes it feels impossible to imagine that even the worst situations have some positive aspect — especially when you are in the throws of it. Like when  your heart is heavy and your spirit broken. When things seem so bleak that you can’t find your way out. When you’re in physical and/or emotional pain that feels unbearable. When it seems as if the world is swirling out of control around you. Or, when something bad has happened to someone (or a whole bunch of someones) you love, and you can’t fix it.

And when this happens at the holidays, it feels even worse because there is so much anticipation and expectation around this time of year. For me, and many that I love, this is how we are feeling as we enter the holidays of 2016.

Yet as I process through it in writing this blog, I  realize that as incredibly tough as this past year and the impending holidays seem right now, I have not lost heart or hope. I just feel sad. My heart is heavy.

(Stick with me, it gets better, I promise!) Read more

Maybe what matters most is being brave

EDITOR’S NOTE: This blog is dedicated to the beautifully brave women in my life who have reminded me recently how awesome it is to both EXPERIENCE and WITNESS courage in action. Whether it’s facing a life-changing medical crisis and remaining strong and brave in the face of uncertainty, like my sister Lisa and my cousin, Donna. Or the beautiful and brave women who leapt despite their fear to put themselves and their health and happiness first as they embark on their own In-the-Equation journeys. To all the beautiful and brave women I know — this one’s for you. #brave #bravegirls #onebravething

lori-bravequote1When I was in the physical part of my personal transformation journey — nearing my weight-loss goal — someone asked me what the tipping point was for me. How did I find success this time when I had tried and failed so many other times?

To be honest, I don’t remember my exact answer. But I remember thinking later that I needed to know the real answer for myself. So I kept asking myself — what WAS different this time? How DID I do it?

A few days later, I noodled on a napkin the words: “Everything changed when I learned I could be brave and afraid at the exact same moment.” I lost 200 lbs and made my health, happiness and life a priority, the day I was brave and afraid at the same time…and acted anyway.

It was both the act of deciding and taking action that was brave. And little did I know at the time, but life with Lori-in-the-equation would require living a brave life.

Too often we let fear stop us. The fear of putting ourselves out there, the fear of what others will think, fear of failure, fear of the unknown, even fear of success, can stop us dead in our tracks. When fear stops us, we play it safe. We retract and don’t go for what we really, really want. Often we stay stuck or living small. We don’t let ourselves truly shine. And for many of us, it means we don’t reach our personal and greatest potential. Can you relate?

There is another way. The brave life. Read more

A pain in the butt!

What my body is teaching me

yourbody-rohnWhat started as a serious pain in the butt in early July — waking me at 4:30 a.m. out of a dead sleep — soon developed into full-blown sciatica.

I’ve now been struggling with lower back and leg pain for nine weeks, and at least four of those included chronic nerve pain, with little or no relief.

In mid August, the nerve pain shifted/traveled. Finally, it got so bad that I was grounded from my daily walking routine. This made matters worse because I lost my one healthy outlet for relieving the stress and keeping it together.

That was about the time I lost it. Read more

It’s Monday. Are you in your equation?

ITE_100_quote_squareFor a little Monday morning motivation, I wanted to share one of my favorite quotes and a few things we’re excited about at In the Equation.Com.

  • ALL IN! After 6 weeks, I’m finally feeling physically better from my pain in the butt sciatica (a little bit), and this morning I woke up with a desire to renew my commitment to going all in. 100+%! Who’s all in with me?!

Read more

Beautiful or Average? …Beautiful!

Dove-choosebeautifulcampaignphotoIt’s no secret, women struggle with body image. We are our own harshest critics. I don’t think many people — even the men in our lives — would argue with that.

Yesterday, I watched the new Dove “Choose Beautiful” campaign for the first time and was mesmerized. If you haven’t seen it, watch here.

The campaign centers on a 3.5 min video that shows women from five cities around the globe having to choose to enter a building through one of two doors — a BEAUTIFUL door and an AVERAGE door. Read more

The 90% Rule

Progress not perfection. 90% = success!

perfectionI woke up this last Friday morning after two days of real struggle working toward my “In the Equation Challenge goal” and remembered: I am not perfect! I am fantastic, strong, smart, courageous, beautiful, passionate, diligent, determined…and perfectly imperfect at the same time. And I LOVE that about me! I am not perfect. Thank God.

One of my favorite quotes related to perfectionism comes from Brene Brown in her book, The Gifts of Imperfection. ““Perfectionism is self destructive simply because there’s no such thing as perfect. Perfection is an unattainable goal.” Here, here. I finally get it and embrace it!

Brene goes on to describe the difference between healthy striving and perfectionism. “Healthy striving is self-focused, how can I improve and grow? Perfectionism worries about what other people will think.” According to Brene’s research, perfectionism is not about excellence or healthy striving. It’s a way of thinking and being that says, “If I look perfect, do it perfect, love perfect, work perfect, I can avoid or minimize shame in my life.”

In other words, perfectionism is the ultimate fear that we might fail, and/or the word is going to see us for who we really area and we won’t measure up. Yes, perfectionism is fear. I get that because I’m a recovering perfectionist. I spent most of my adult life trying to be perfect and beating myself up when I was not. It kept me small, and stuck. On the sidelines and NOT in the arena for far too much of my life.

These past four years as I’ve personally transformed both inside and out, I’ve worked to embrace “progress not perfection.” I’ve learned the difference between healthy striving, learning and growing as a person vs. the impossible standard of perfection. And, most importantly I’ve learned self-love and how to offer self-compassion when I slip or fall or fail. I truly believe, I am enough. And that has made all the difference.

Which brings to me to why this blog — the”In Your Equation Challenge” and my revelation of this past week. Read more

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