Archive for May, 2013

"By the River" - Acrylic on canvas by Barbie Dallmann

“By the River” – Acrylic on canvas by Barbie Dallmann

I love taking my son’s dog with me in the mornings when I walk or run. She’s such a great companion, and I confess, I do love multitasking. It’s such a high when I’m getting a three-for-one bargain: exercising, walking the dog, and listening to a book on my iPod.

This morning, as I noticed Lucy wandering into a side yard, I yelled over my shoulder, “Hey! Lucy! It’s your job to keep of track of me … not the other way around!” As she quickly caught up, I found myself smiling, remembering how I used to say that same thing to Britain when he was a toddler. Wherever we went, I would always remind him: “It’s your job to keep track of me. So, pay attention, and try to keep up!” What a great memory!

The truth, of course, is that I always had an eye out for him, just like I’m always aware of what Lucy’s up to.

I wonder if it’s that way with the Divine. I can just hear God saying, “It’s your job to keep track of me!” And off I go, thinking I’m all independent and in charge of every last detail. My truth, though, is that there has always been a bigger picture, one I’ll never be able to totally comprehend. And those times when I’ve strayed off course, there were whispers urging me to “pay attention!” Sometimes, too, my resistance causes me to run in the opposite direction. I’m grateful that even during those times when I think I’ve lost track of the Divine, she never loses track of me.

I guess this morning’s outing was actually a FOUR-for one: exercise, dog walking, iPod, and a bit of spiritual insight. Now I really am feeling a powerful urge to smile!

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Ironman on couch

Ironman 3

I went to see Ironman 3 with my son on Mother’s Day. The last three words of the movie are still bouncing around in my head. (If you don’t want to know what they are, then stop reading now.)

One of the reasons I’m awestruck is that they are the same three words that ended the first movie, but the meaning this time is very different. At the end of the first movie, Tony Stark confessed to the world, “I am Ironman.” At the end of #3, he declared, “I am Ironman.”

What’s the difference? The first time around, he was admitting that he was the one performing all those superhero deeds. It was all about what he was doing.

By the end of the third movie, however, I saw the transformational shift in Tony Stark. It’s the burden I bear: I see everything, including comic book heroes through the lens of an integrative life coach.

What I saw at the end of movie #3 was Tony Stark embracing the qualities of Ironman. He declared ownership of those qualities, no matter what he was doing. The words were so powerful, they touched my heart, and ignited the soul-searching question, “Who am I?”

After days of contemplation, I realized “Coach Barbie” is not what I do, it is who I am. It is who I have always been, since long before I became a certified coach. From as early as grade school, I have memories of listening to people and offering multiple perspectives and possible solutions to problems. I have always encouraged others to be better, to dream bigger, to embrace life fully. I am an optimist, and I believe in people’s ability to be happy if they so choose.

I am humbled by this realization. I feel both peaceful and empowered, knowing in my heart that no matter what path I walk, the imprint of my soul will appear on everything I do. That’s really what being a superhero is all about … claiming the spark of the Divine and answering the call of the soul.

I am Coach Barbie … who are you?

Book cover

This book was authored by my own life coach, Aila Accad. I was privileged to read it as it was being written, and it has so inspired me! It goes on sale in bookstores June 24. Click on the image above and “Like” her Facebook Page. Also, be sure to add this title to your “Must Read” list this summer.

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Lately I’ve found myself in a circular pattern. When I find an idea to blog about, my schedule is full, and I don’t have time to write. But when I schedule time for writing, I can’t seem to find the ideas or the words.

One or two of these deadends would have been okay, but it’s been over two weeks! Two weeks is too long to go without writing!

Oh, Mom would love that sentence! I used all three forms of two-too-to. You see, when I was little this sort of sentence was a nightly ritual of ours. She loved to teach homophones and challenge me to use them in sentences (spelling each one, of course).

You’ll love our yule log!
The sail boat is on sale.
You’re going to write about your days of yore, right?

I put this memory in my book. Did I mention I’ve been writing a book? No, I didn’t think so. Actually, I thought I had finished writing a book. I scheduled time last December to complete the typesetting and get it printed. Then I got sick … for weeks … and then Debbie Ford died … and then Dannie started his cancer treatments . . . . Things got busy at work, and somehow, I let the book slip away.

But I started writing again a couple of weeks ago as a way to infuse my stressful days with a dose of joy. I designed the book cover and became clearer than ever about why I want to complete this project: Because the exercises I’m creating in this workbook shift me into a place of gratitude. Answering the questions and concentrating on the projects has become a supportive practice, an affirmation of all the good in my life.

As Marianne Williamson said, “Joy is what happens when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.”

One of the proposed designs for the book cover

One of the proposed book cover designs

In the midst of challenges, if one is to find the strength to keep going, it’s essential to take time each day for that simple recognition.

So, I’ll share with you today’s entry in Creating a Life You Love …:

Exercise #69:

  1. List a minimum of five memories about rainstorms that warm your heart and leave you smiling.
  2. Share one of your happy memories with someone else and then really listen as that person shares a happy memory with you.
  3. Finally, choose your favorite “feeling” from all the memories you’ve recalled and decide how you can create just a bit of that feeling for yourself today, tonight, tomorrow . . . .

That’s it. Rainstorm Memories! I can’t wait to hear what comes up for you. Leave a Comment!

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