On snakes, transformation and “crushing it”

crushing itUpon finding a road-killed snake last week, “crushing it” took on a whole new meaning for me.

According to urbandictionary.com “crushing it” means: “Being in severe shape, looking good, being better than others, looking hot, feeling positive, having more than others, having relations with other attractive people.”

Or put another way, “doing it all…. well.”

But can we really “crush it” in everything we do?

Not according to television screenwriter/producer Shonda Rhimes in her June 2014 Dartmouth Commencement Speech. Ms. Rhimes is the creative force behind the hit TV series Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice and Scandal and had this to say:

“As a very successful woman, a single mother of three, who constantly gets asked the question, ‘How do you do it all?’ For once I am going to answer that question with 100 percent honesty here for you now.

“Shonda, how do you do it all?

“The answer is this: I don’t.

“Whenever you see me somewhere succeeding in one area of my life, that almost certainly means I am failing in another area of my life…

“Anyone who tells you they are doing it all perfectly is a liar.”

I love her honest answer, and this is why I want to take a look at how we really “crush it.”

How do we teach children?

fed upHow do we teach children?

By example, our words and our actions.  That seems pretty obvious.

But how do we do it well?

If we are living our best possible lives, we will teach by example and the teaching becomes easy.

I found a great example of it in my own family during a recent visit.

A few weeks ago, I walked into my kitchen and discovered my three-year old grand-nephew standing in front of the open refrigerator precariously holding my great-grandmother’s antique glass serving bowl with just one hand.

The bowl was full of fruit and fruit was what he wanted.

Two thoughts raced through my mind simultaneously: “please don’t drop that” and “wow, three years old and he’s choosing fruit as a snack!”

I made every effort to stay calm because I didn’t for one moment want him to think he’d done something wrong by choosing fruit.

I was delighted, and gently said, “let me help you” and took the delicate bowl from his hands and helped him to a serving of fruit.

My hat goes off to my niece and her husband: healthy vegetarians, who have passed good food choices on to their son.

How Indigenous people teach children 

Children only know what we teach them. And we need to teach them well because they are the future of our country, planet and species.

Among indigenous people, raising  children is the highest calling, for exactly the reason I just gave – they are our future.

“We” versus “I” — Which do you say the most?

we versus I“We” versus “I” – which you say the most may determine your success in life.

As a Keith Urban fan, I make a point of listening to interviews with him. Something caught my attention earlier this year when he was being interviewed about his duet with Miranda Lambert on their hit song, “When We Were Us.”

Urban said “Miranda used to open for us…”

Note that this megastar musician who is backed up by his own band said “us” not “me.” He considers his band as important in the equation of success as he is.

That’s class.

And it also shows a high consciousness.

“Us” and “we” consciousness is what makes the world go around in a good way.

“I” and “me” – not so much.

No successful person says “I”

Ernesto Sirolli in his September 2012 TED talk has this to say on the subject:

Five questions that can change your life

Thinking Woman With Question Marks Above The Head Isolated

There are five questions I suggest people ask themselves to steer their life in the right direction.

These are questions I’ve asked myself to bring about powerful change.

Questions are motivators: we can’t help but start working on an answer.

In fact, in studying copywriting, the writer is encouraged to phrase statements as questions– because people naturally want to know the answer! Humans are problem solvers at heart.

QUESTION ONE. “If you won the lottery and never had to worry about earning an income again, what would you do?”

This was a question asked of me by a career counselor many years ago. And the answer is a key to revealing what you should be doing with your life — even without winning the lottery.

Did you ask the turtle?

ask the turtle

“Did you ask the turtle?”

That’s a question Gloria Steinham was asked in college after helping a turtle to the other side of the road.

It’s a cautionary tale about wanting to help people who don’t need our help.

That can be a hard lesson to learn.

Gloria Steinem, writer and leader of the women’s rights movement, gave a talk to Smith College alumni about lessons from her education, about how seemingly small incidents can have very big impacts.

At Smith, needing to fulfill her science course requirements, Ms. Steinem admitted she took a geology course because she considered it the least scientific of all the sciences.

While on a field trip in the wetlands of New England’s Connecticut River, she saw a giant turtle which had climbed out of the river, crossed a road and was in the mud of an embankment of another road, seemingly about to crawl up and get squashed by a car.

Gloria, fearing the turtle was going to cross the road and get run over, picked it up and carried it to the other side.

Her professor saw this and said, “Did you ask the turtle before you moved it? That turtle probably spent a week crawling up that dirt road to lay its eggs in the mud by the side of the road, and you just put it back in the river.”

So the lesson was, “Always ask the turtle.”

Or put another way, always ask those you want to help what it is they actually need and want.