If You’ve Got A Problem, YO! You’ll Solve It.

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  • My Q: What is your career goal (if known)?
  • My student’s A: “Does anyone ever really know???”

I LOL’ed sitting alone on my couch holding their stack of papers:

Does anyone ever really know?

Yes, wise pupil. Some people know. You don’t know right this minute. That’s ok.

Can you relate? I can.

My name is Georgi, and I’m a recovering control freak. I often think that not knowing is a problem. I want to know everything now and I don’t. I want to fix everything immediately and I can’t. I want to trust that my life will continue to surprise and delight me and yet, I have doubts. That’s ok.

Let’s face it. It has to be ok.

Life presents problems.

But here’s another beautiful thing life will offer: Solutions.

Vanilla Ice rapped, “If you got a problem, Yo! I’ll solve it.”

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Inside-Outer. It’s a problem.

Do you have a problem? Please call Vanilla Ice.

HA HA. Totally kidding. Don’t call that guy! Guess what, yo? We don’t need him. If you’ve got a problem, Yo! It’s ok. You’ll solve it.

Solutions are coming.

BUT WAIT!!! HOW DO YOU REALLY KNOW???

A-HA! Gotcha! Watch out for it: Anxiety and fear can skyrocket when you journey into the unknown! It feels terrible, right?

We can work on that. Lookout, Vanilla Ice! Here’s a new rap:

Yo! You’ll solve this. It will be ok. It’s ok to feel scared and anxious. It’s probably because you care about this situation. You care. You are full of care and desire. That is important. And there is a solution to your problem. There could be many solutions. If the exact solution isn’t clear right now, it’s on the way.

Solutions are on the way. Help is on the way. More information is on the way. More pieces to the solution are coming. Relief is coming.

Get quiet. Give it a rest. Give it some thought. Give it some time. Give it more space.

Gorgeous, human reader. Messy, beautiful soul: If you’ve got a problem, yo, you’ll solve it. You will solve it. Maybe the solution isn’t clear right this second, but get quiet and trust your inner guidance.

  • Q: Who really knows?
  • A: You. You always really know.

Loving you out there.

Solutions are on the way.

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Are You Scared To Write a Blog?

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Welcome to blog post is number 111. In numerology, 111 marks new beginnings. Alignment. Fresh starts. But this is how I felt before I posted blog #1: SO SCARED.

Me: writing writing writing and thinking thinking thinking how people would call me ridiculous. Stupid. Simple. She’s cheapening her degrees by writing stupid shit online.

OMG SO SCARED. Courage is when you’re scared and you still do it. Yes, I still get scared. And yet here I am: still doing it.

Over a hundred posts. Thousands of views. Countless private messages and emails saying THANK YOU. Georgi, I APPRECIATE you. Your words HELPED ME. You said something I was thinking. It’s so weird, YOU CONNECTED to my problem. After a difficulty, THANK YOU for a new way of thinking.

You know who I would have reached if I stayed scared? NO ONE.

Hey, you. Yeah, cute lil’ you. What you have to say is important. It is. Now. As is.

A few months ago, I was talking to a woman whose husband has bipolar disorder. She has written BEAUTY that could HELP other people. She told me she wanted to publish a blog. And was scared.

I get that. I was scared too. Sometimes I am still scared. It’s just…

colored-pencil-3118270_960_720Do you know how many people would BENEFIT if you shared your struggles? Do you know how many people are ON YOUR SIDE? Do you know how many people WANT TO READ what you have to say???

I do! I’ve found out. It’s awesome. Even if it was ONE PERSON, it would be worth it.

GORGEOUS!!! Write a blog. Speak your opinion. Offer your thoughts. They don’t have to be perfect. They don’t have to be ready. They don’t have to be a Pulitzer. NO ONE HAS TO READ IT.

You know what the best part has been about my blog? I go back and read what I’ve read. Sometimes, when I’m blue, I read my ideas and say holy shit I wrote that. I get emails and text messages and calls and affirmations and comments in person and I have found out that there are a tribe of people who love me and READ MY BLOG. THIS FREE BLOG. THIS NO ONE HAS TO READ THIS BLOG.

sign-2639397_960_720I get to read my  own LOVING WORDS. I get to see my LIFE ON A PAGE. It helps me so much.

So many self-help books and articles will suggest that you journal and blog. And yet, people are scared. And yet, want to know why it feels so good?

Healing and connecting and mental health improves when you REDUCE CONSUMING what other people put out and START CREATING. Yeah, YOU. CREATE. Create your own blog. Fine tune your own ideas and jokes. Publish that shit. IT’S FREE. Or, create something else. Music. Art. Dance. A healthy body. A trained dog. A signature handshake. Whatevs. That’s cool too.

Reader! Gorgeous reader!!! Sending you so many kisses and hugs.

111!!! A new beginning for me and you. Know who loves you so much?

It’s me. XOX

Know who wants to read your blog?

Me neither. Maybe you should write one. Or 111.

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It’s Uncomfortable Outside the Comfort Zone

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The gentleman in the front row raised his hand and said, “I’m freaking out.”

A very intelligent grown man freaking out.

Why? Because my colleagues and I had just asked him, and a class full of graduate students, to give a short elevator pitch about who they were and what they were all about.

We asked adults to introduce themselves, and they freaked out.

This is the life of a teacher. Nudge a student outside their zone of comfort and voila… discomfort.

Have you felt uncomfortable lately?

When you leave your comfort zone, you are going to feel uncomfortable.

Trying to run your first 5k? Hello, discomfort.

Going back to school? Bonjour, discomfort.

Dating someone new? Hola, discomfort. I knew you were going to show up.

But wait wait wait, gorgeous!!! Here’s the great thing about emotions: You can feel them. You can allow them. You can handle them. You can work through them.

mug-1863438_960_720Do you know what we said to that gentleman who was freaking out?

That’s ok.

You’re freaking out? That’s ok.

You are about to do something that’s challenging. It’s ok.

You can be uncomfortable and still do that thing. That’s called courage.

Courageous people are uncomfortable and they do it anyway.

You can freak out and still do it.

You can feel a little nervous and scared and worried and still do it.

Life outside the comfort zone is uncomfortable. You risk failure and rejection.

IMG_5518Know what else is outside the comfort zone? Improvement. Pride. Accomplishment. Excitement. Expansion. Passion. Dreams. Goals. Leadership. Strength. Incredible health. Astounding wealth. Profound influence. Hot sex. Big love.

Cutest, smartest, sweetest, most adorable reader: Be comfortable for as long as you want. You can always, always, always choose comfort. I choose comfort ALL THE TIME!!! I love it. I love being comfortable. You can always return to comfort. You can always retreat to the zone.

But then, if you ever want to go outside the comfort zone, prepare to feel like this:

Uncomfortable.

A little nervous.

A teeny bit (or bigtime) scared of failure and rejection.

If you feel that way, lovingly remind yourself that it’s because you have left the zone.  Why? Because you are courageous, you are brave, and you are making your dreams come true. You are going after big things. Now and always, remind yourself that it’s your choice.

It’s always your choice. Have fun with it.

Loving you out there. Ready to get uncomfortable?

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Did You Remember To Lock Your Car? What Else Are You Doing Without Thinking?

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What do you do on a daily basis that is repetitive, easy, and almost unconscious?

Oh, boy! A LOT.

Ever walk into your house and get halfway through making dinner and wonder if you locked your car? Me too.

OF COURSE YOU LOCKED YOUR CAR! And you opened your door with a key. And you took all the ingredients for dinner out of the frig.

When you do things over and over, your brain and your body create muscle memories. And then, with less and less brain power and effort, you repeat those patterns for maximum efficiency.

You’re amazing!!!

You wake up. You drink coffee. You check your email. You drive to work. You make small talk. You do a work routine. You eat lunch. You work out. You get ready for bed.

My friend is learning how to play the fiddle now. It’s like TWIN….KLE…..TWIN…..KLE……LIT…..TLE….STAAAAAAAAARR. But next year, she’s going to be faster and will use less and less effort.

How do I know? Because she’s got a daily practice routine. She is forming a new habit. And habits are transformational!!! MUSCLE MEMORY ENGAGED. DOING IT AGAIN. EASIER AND EASIER. THIS IS WHAT WE DO. WE WILL EASILY DO IT AGAIN.

cake-pops-693645_960_720Ah yes, all those habits serve you. They work. Yes. All of them. Even that chocolate habit. On some level, ALL of your habits are serving a purpose.

OOooooh boy. Now for the good stuff…

Want to break a habit??? No problem! Go backwards.

Make your bad habit conscious again: I’m doing that thing again. Oh! Yeah! I see that pattern. It’s all ok (compassion). That pattern is serving a purpose.

What else would serve the same purpose that would feel better?

If you haven’t read Charles Duhigg’s book The Power of Habit, put it on your holiday list. His book is a delight. I devoured it like chocolate because it was so satisfying and interesting. I assign it to my students. It is an awesome subject.

Gorgeous, intelligent, mindful reader: Habits are AMAZING. They take load off our brains so we work faster. They make things easier. They become muscle memories. Your good habits are sustaining you all day long every day.

And… if you ever want to change a habit, get curious and conscious about the one you want to replace. Why are you doing that thing? What is its purpose? Can you do something else that would feel better AND serve the same purpose?

Yeah, you can. And yes, you will. You’ve got this. You just need practice. Rosen up your bow. Twinkle, twinkle, little star. Soon, you’ll be enchanting us all.

Loving you out there. Create some habits you love.

But first… Did you lock your car? OF COURSE YOU DID, YOU HABITUAL LITTLE MINX! NICE JOB. Mmmmwah!

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Leadership Super Skill: Self-Soothing

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Hello out there, you gorgeous leader, you. You love to read about self-improvement. You love that new book about being better. You love a new challenging workout.

I know. You love to dial it up. Me too.

And yet…

Do you ever have that sense that you’re never quite there? An ache of always need to be better? A sad feeling that it’s never going to be enough?

Oh, amazing one. What if there’s another way?

What if the most important work of leadership is the ability to chill out? The ability to focus? The work of getting in the zone? The process of opening yourself to be receptive to the flow of new ideas?

What if you don’t need to be better? What if you just need to calm down?

Try it.

wave-64170__340Soothe yourself to success.

Soothe yourself.

Put down the iPhone.

Tell yourself that everything will be ok. Remind yourself that you will be ok.

Let it all be ok.

Sleep.

Eat nice meals and savor every bite.

Sleep in on the weekend and slowly sip tea.

Allow yourself pleasure.

No matter what is going on, let it be ok.

Be gentle with yourself.

Every day.

Rest.

Nap.

Take a break.

Have dessert.

Sit quietly in meditation for ten minutes.

Ask friends to help you.

Hire people to help you.

Call a hotline or reach out for professional help.

Beautiful, ambitious, gorgeous reader: Soothe yourself to success. Let everything be ok. Chill a little more. Relax a little more. Loosen a little more. Quiet a little more. Easy a little more. Flow a little more. Enjoy a little more. Let the present moment be enough. Come back to now. Breathe deeply.

Self-soothing is the most important work of leadership.

Have you tried it? I bet you’ve tried punishing yourself. Yuck.

Now try this: be good to you. So good.

Yes, boo. Try. Not as a reward. Every day. As a way of life.

Loving you out there. Self-soothe. See what happens. You may be amazed.

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That Marathon Kicked My Butt, So Here’s What I Did

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At mile 25 of my first marathon in September, my friend joined me in running the final mile. With tears and snot running down my face, I ugly cried and begged her to tell me funny, happy stories.

Usually, I’m the one telling stories. Usually, I’m the one cheering people on.

Have you ever been seriously humbled?

Have you ever felt completely weak?

That marathon kicked my butt.

It stabbed my ego.

It was not fun.

I love fun.

There was the good: A gorgeous friend hosted a pasta and grilled chicken and fresh vegetable dinner at his house full of love. There were guitars and people singing and clinking glasses of champagne. Friends made posters Rawr Rawr Georgi Rausch! and screamed and danced.

IMG_6115There was the bad: My headphones didn’t work. I compared myself to ultra-runners who think 26 miles is like sneezing. I beat myself up for not training better. I took off my shoes to find two blackened toenails. I could hardly walk afterwards. And so, so many tears.

Do you know when to take a moment and be proud of yourself?

Do you know when to give it a rest?

Do you know when to stop?

I’m learning.

There was the best: I took a victory month. October was full of dog walking. Hiking slowly and looking at trees and leaves. Dancing with a glass of wine in my kitchen. Traveling to Ireland. Drinking Guinness and riding trains. Eating good food and sipping whiskey. Appreciating the Irish accents. Storytelling. Laughing. Giving myself a giant break.

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Up until the race in September, I ran over 400 training miles. In October, I ran 11.

What now?

Yesterday was November 1st. I got up early, drank coffee, leashed up Blue, and went on a run. My first run of November.

We ran three miles through the last falling leaves.

We laughed.

We stopped at corners and danced to Andy Grammer: I give love to all of my people, all of my people need love, I give some.

What do you do after being humbled? You make a comeback.

IMG_5493Gorgeous, beautiful, humble reader: I ran a marathon. Trained. Tried. Persevered. Finished. I did that. I’m proud of myself. Amazed at myself. Thankful that I kept a promise to myself. Knocked out that I pushed my limits that far. Learned so much about who I am and who I want to be and the people I want to be with.

Have you had your butt kicked lately too? Good. I love you for that. You’re in the arena. You’re out there trying. You’re growing. You’re learning. You’re absolutely freaking beautiful. Nice job.

Do you know when to give it a rest? Try it sometime. Have a laugh. Dance around. Listen to funny people. Give love. Receive love.

Know what to do when you’ve recovered? Come back. Begin again.

Loving you out there. What’s next? XO

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Or… What If That’s Not True?

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Name a book that has changed your life.

My answer is Byron Katie’s book “Loving What Is.” I listened to it on audio with tears streaming down my face.

So many thoughts run through our heads.

So many thoughts run through our heads that aren’t true.

So many lies run through our heads that hurt.

It doesn’t have to be that way.

Before I listened to Katie’s book, I rarely questioned what I thought. I rarely questioned my own beliefs except for special times at school when I was supposed to be a “critical thinker.”

Funny, the critical thinking usually going on was me criticizing me. Me frustrated with me. Me judging me. Me thinking all kinds of things that simply were not true.

After I listened to Katie’s book, I started a new practice: questioning my thoughts.

What am I thinking?

Is it true?

Is it really true?

light-2581929_960_720That person doesn’t like me: Is that true?

I need to do a better job: Is that true?

I need to be faster and skinnier and sexier: Is that true?

He would never be attracted to me: Is that true?

My students are on their cellphones because I’m boring: Is that true?

Spending the day resting is lazy: Is that true?

Oh, so many thoughts we have.

Oh, how our brains can worry.

Oh, how we make up all kinds of stories about ourselves and other people.

Oh, ha ha ha ha ha. Ha! HA HA HA!!!

Hey, boo, what are you thinking? Wow! Is it true?

Beautiful, smart, fast-thinking reader: Have you watched your thoughts lately? Have you noticed them churning around? Have you stopped to observe the traffic on your brain’s highway of ideas? Look closely. Listen with curiosity. Be so kind and sweet and gentle to yourself and that monkey mind.

Maybe Katie’s book won’t thrill you. But, I am so glad that she asked me the questions that have changed my life:

What are you thinking? Is it true? Can you be sure it’s true? What if it’s not true???

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