Then He Said, "I Don't Know How To Be Alone."

Posted Thursday, April 26, 2012



You could hear a pin drop. The once lively discussion that the group of us were having moved to reality and we all sat with his words.

There was no judgement. We ALL knew exactly what he was talking about.

You see, there is real life going on all around us and somewhere along the way we were taught that avoiding truth and avoiding our feelings will keep us safe. Really? Do you feel safe? Do you feel at ease?

This is a big deal. There are people in intense pain at every turn. We self-medicate with TV, with food, with alcohol, and prescription drugs. We also do it in more outwardly "healthy" ways like exercise and work.

I feel deeply for my friend. He doesn't want to be alone. He's willing to endure misery in order to ensure that he doesn't have to be alone. At least he has the courage to admit it. To admit that it's his choice—he knows that it's a fool's bargain—but it's his bargain and the only one he knows how to make right now. We've all been there. I would venture to guess that we are all there right now—one way or another.

So what do we do now?   Read More »

Loving Winter

Posted Monday, January 09, 2012

Today is January 9th and it still hasn't gotten that cold here in the Chicago area. We've had a few mornings with some slight flurries and some temperatures in the low teens—but frankly not that many. I am still running in shorts several times per week and haven't seen a reason to switch to tights yet. What a gift.

This, however, might be a problem. Winter—snow—AND—cold—is important. Important for the trees. Important for the pollen count next summer. Important for creating a great deal of snow melt for the spring. Winter strengthens our world—makes it more resilient to disease. Winter kills off bacteria. Winter enhances the circle of life and participates in evolution by killing off the weakest of the animals—leaving the strongest and smartest to survive and create another generation. 

Winter is a good metaphor for life. It represents death and dying in our lives.  Death is needed. 

No matter what anyone says, no one enjoys the pain and discomfort of howling wind and bitter cold. We enjoy the fireplace when we get back to the house—but the cold seeps into our marrow and makes us cold at our core. Getting let go by the company you trusted with your future is like that. Failing miserably while chasing your dreams is like that. Hearing the doctor tell you that you have cancer is like that. Discovering your children are into drugs is like that. Divorce is like that. Losing a parent is like that. 

So now what? Winter is coming—if it isn't already here for you. How do you respond to winter? How do you respond to not being in control. How do you respond to the depth of emptiness that comes when you realize that you can't make it better? You can't fix it?

  Read More »

Holding Onto What You Can't Hold Onto

Posted Monday, June 27, 2011



I've been devastated in my life. Many times. I've cried through pain beyond belief...wondering if I would ever be OK.

I love deeply. I throw my whole self into relationships. I don't believe that we should do this thing called friendship with anything less than our full selves. One caution however, this way of doing life has consequences.

In my 20s, I had a best friend; we were together often and we met for breakfast every Friday for several years. Our families did stuff together and everyone thought of us as brothers. One day, I had been trying to get ahold of him to borrow a card table and when he finally answered...he said that he didn't want to lend me his card table and he didn't want to be my friend anymore either. I slumped onto my bed and asked him to repeat what he said. He did and I went into shock.

I didn't understand what had happened. It turns out that he had been building up resentment towards how I rubbed him the wrong way for years and simply kept it to himself. Something I did that week set him off and he was done.

I could not function at work the next day. I was a mess. I'd like to say that we talked and worked it out and repaired our friendship but the truth is that we never did. He had never said there was anything wrong until that day.

Then and now I will own my issues...own my mistakes. I learned many things about myself from that relationship. I learned that I can come across as thinking I'm better than others when my insecurities are in full swing. I also learned that although he wasn't going to be my friend anymore...it didn't mean that I was unworthy of friendship.   Read More »

Saddle Up

Posted Tuesday, February 22, 2011



I went on a brewery tour last week and I learned that even (or especially) the most successful people are terrified of failure.

First, a story: I love beer.

My love affair with beer began on a business trip to Germany, I found every pub had their own beer and it was downright amazing. They even drink beer with their breakfast—how cool is that? Also, I had some wonderful friends and co-workers that introduced me to micro-brews that reinforced the idea that there was such a thing as great beer.

Since then, those that know me—know I love beer—and only good beer! So my buddy got me a tickets to the New Glarus Brewery tour and we headed up there last Friday.

It’s an inspiring story. Founded in 1993 by a Master Brewer and his Entrepreneur wife (Daniel and Deborah Carey) with only $40,000 in capital. They have grown rapidly—including 64% in the last three years—all while only selling beer in Wisconsin. As a part of the tour, we got a chance to talk to Dan Carey. He shared some of his vision for the company. He also demonstrated how passionate he was about the brewery and the people working alongside him.

We got a chance to ask him some questions so I asked him a question that I’m pretty sure he hasn’t heard that often from a weekly tour:

“What keeps you up at night?”

He took a deep breath. Then another.   Read More »



Check out our last 6 eNewsletters:

November 4, 2016--Crossing the Continental Divide (Both Literally and Metaphorically)


May 13, 2016-Are You Embracing Your Goo?

April 6, 2016--Micromanagement is Good Management


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