Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What is in Your Book of Awesome?

As summer approaches, my tradition is to make a list of all the books I want to read. This year my list is longer than normal- guess I haven’t read enough lately! One of the books on my list is The Book of (Even More) Awesome by Neil Pasricha. It is a follow up book to, The Book of Awesome.

About a month ago as I was getting ready for work, I heard Neil in an interview on the Today Show. I had heard of the book before but hearing him talk about it really peeked my interest. So, I bought the book. Since that time the book has sat on my desk until this week when it became my first book to read from my summer reading list. If you want to check out the book, click here. (

The book is, well, AWESOME! It isn’t kind of book you can open it up and read any page. In the introduction to the book Pasrisha states, “Nobody can predict the future, but we do know one thing about it: It ain’t gonna go according to plan.” He goes on to talk more about his idea for these books and how his real hope is that people are reminded “that the best things in life are free”. As I read these words, I found myself agreeing completely with his thoughts. So often I am looking for the BIG things and I forget about the simple things that make me smile. So for the past few mornings, I have started my day reading this book. It’s refreshing and a great reminder that there are things in daily life that are truly awesome.

Some of the awesome things he write about include:

· When your fries order has a few onion rings stashed at the bottom

· Picking up something that turns out to be a lot lighter than you expected

· When someone saves you a seat

As I’ve been reading the last few days it has given me a reminder to pay attention to the awesome things in my day that make me smile and to appreciate those moments. If I were writing a book of awesome, it would include:

· Hearing a child say they love you

· Talking to friends you haven’t seen in years like no time has passed

· Towels right out of the dryer!

· Getting your inbox to 0

If you were writing a your own personal book of awesome, what would you include?

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Mid-Life Unraveling?

I recently had a conversation with a good friend about the term "midlife crisis" and how it is inevitable that people our age will be going through this stage of life. We took issue with the word "crisis" because it makes it sound so ominous and heavy. Like we need to avoid it at any cost. We are out to change that.

Life for me has come in stages as I'm sure it has for most of you. Well the stage I'm in now is looking a lot like a midlife crisis. No, I haven't bought a sports car, but the music is getting a little too loud, I'm really looking forward to getting in bed by 10pm, I'm growing my hair longer just to prove that I can, blah, blah, blah. So, my friend and I were looking for a better word and I think I have found it. Instead of calling it a mid-life crisis it should be a mid-life unraveling. I can't take credit for this as I read it in a book by Brene Brown. She describes this concept as "a time when you feel a desperate pull to live the life you want to live, not the one you're supposed to live." She goes on to say that the "unraveling is a time when you are challenged to let go of who you think you are supposed to be and to embrace who you are." Maybe being older, I have less patience or less of a filter for those things that are not congruent with who I am. The struggle has been characterized as a "crisis" when perhaps it is me changing and learning to lose the need to please other people so often.

Yeah, I know that most of the participants and graduates of LeaderShape programs are no where near their midlife crisis; however, perhaps they can learn from a few of us older folks some lessons to make their path a little easier. I'm thinking the sooner we all embrace who we are and let go of who we are supposed to be, the closer a just, caring, thriving world becomes.

And then, we can tell you how we used to have to wait for dial up internet service instead of walking 5 miles in the snow to school like our "elders" told us...

Monday, May 2, 2011

Palmer Award Application is Available!

The Palmer Award is provided each year to two LeaderShape graduates who have participated in a national or campus-based session during the previous year. The award is given to recognize the achievements of those individuals who have demonstrated their commitment to bringing their vision to reality after attending a session of The LeaderShape Institute.

The Palmer Awards began as an endowment gift donated to the Alpha Tau Omega Foundation by Dr. Edmund T. Palmer, Jr. Together the Foundation and LeaderShape provide two $500 awards for a graduate of The LeaderShape Institute who has implemented their vision.

Individuals eligible to apply for this award must be 2010 graduates of The LeaderShape Institute. To view the Palmer Award application, please visit Applications are due June 30, 2011. If you have any questions, please e-mail Kristen Hyman at