The very real pain of not giving up

Dear one, It’s not like you thought it would be, is it? To put it mildly, this past year did not go to plan. It was a reckoning, in every sense of the word. We’ve seen just how tenuous our “normal” is, just how quickly life as we knew it can end. And so perhaps you’re looking ahead to this new year and feeling a strange mixture of terror and anticipation. Will things get worse before they get better? Will COVID be a memory by this time next year? Where are we in the scope of this struggle? Of course, ...
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Don’t Give Up in the Eleventh Hour

“How do I not give up in the eleventh hour?” This is a heartfelt listener question, and I take it seriously. Here’s my short answer (which connects to the theme of our featured interview this week): Don’t be that mean to yourself. …
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Making Time to Go After Goals

“How can I have the confidence to make the time to go after my goals when my brain tells me they are frivolous?” “How can I be more efficient with my use of time … and fit exercise into an already packed schedule? [Housework, part-time employment, half-time Ph.D. studies, dependent elderly father 90 minutes away refusing to consider moving into care.]” Boy oh boy, could I relate to these listener questions from The Clarity Course Series. Though our circumstances are different, I know what it’s like to work big goals into an already-full life. …
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You Have Got To Reach

Once upon a time, I spoke to a woman who said, “I don’t feel adequate enough to talk to you.” How’s that for an opening? This woman had reasons to feel less-than, stuck, and scared. To protect her privacy, I won’t share those reasons here. It suffices to say that she had a tough history. She dreamed of helping other people, but struggled to help herself. When I encouraged her to get support for her journey, she made an effort and asked for help once. But when she didn’t hear back, she stopped asking. …
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Go To The Limits Of Your Longing

Who am I to think I can do this? That’s the thought that thrummed through my brain as I took the call. I was on the phone with a coach I wanted to hire, and let’s be real: I was totally anxious about it. Sure, I’d scoured her website and watched tons of her videos. I believed that she could help me to get to my dream of building my readership and a new business too. But I was about to take action on this “crazy” idea, and it brought up ALL my stuff. …
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6 Ways to Get Rid of Perfectionism Even When Excuses Abound

“How did you start to get rid of perfectionism and make the steps to become an author? How did you transition from living your “past life” to the life you have now?” Here’s what I know: Perfectionism is fancied-up fear. To paraphrase Liz Gilbert in Big Magic, it’s fear in a fur coat. Perfectionism may seem classy and high-functioning, but deep down it’s just you being afraid. How to overcome fear in four words? Ground yourself in love. That’s the larger principle, but what does it look like to LIVE that truth, day in and day out? Here are a ...
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When You’re Scared to Try, Remember This

Have you ever felt the desire to take a shot at something new – a job, a relationship, a dream – but then automatically shut yourself down? Ever told yourself, I’m not good enough or It’s too hard; I’ll never figure it out, so why bother…? If you’re scared to try, then I have a video story just for you. …
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What To Do When A Blizzard Hits Your Life

Dear Caroline*, One minute I had a good life. I was happy, and my family was happy too. The next minute, we received some terrible and unexpected news. Without going into detail, I can say that it has been devastating … a slow-motion train wreck with no end in sight. Surviving the present takes everything I have. I was in shock for a while. In a way I still am, but I’m getting through the days at least. Even though I still have a lot to be thankful for – a steady job, a safe place to live – it ...
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What If You Refused to Stop Walking Homeward?

Let’s just be blunt: the last week has been hard. On behalf of us all, I’d like a cosmic refund. I’d like a do-over, our money back, and some free dessert for the table, please. Here in the McGraw house, multiple projects stalled, and I felt adrift and unsure. Then the feral cats chose our yard as the new kitty hot spot, leading to a flea infestation. Every time I stepped outside I received new bites, and I’m allergic to them. (Thank God for antihistamines.) Then I received some disappointing personal news. And after that I heard about the Oregon ...
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What to Do When You Feel Not Good Enough

Don’t you love how every epic saga starts with the main character going through their usual routine for the millionth time? Cinderella sweeps the hearth and endures the same familial abuse. Katniss goes to the Reaping and faces the same brutal injustice. Lyra prowls Oxford and hides from the same protective grownups. (If you haven’t read the His Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pullman, please cancel your plans and remedy this oversight immediately.) And then something bizarre happens. A fairy godmother shows up, a familiar name is called, someone slips poison into a glass. In a moment, the journey begins. ...
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