Powerful Women vs Women in Power

stilettos“With great power there must also come –great responsibility.” ~ Stan Lee

Not all Women in Power are Powerful Women. There are women who exude personal power naturally, and those who have to work for it. Those who come by it naturally generally don’t take advantage of it because they are secure in who they are. (there is always an exception to the rule) Life experience or character building is usually along the path in finding it. These women can’t help but walk into a room and have other women feel their vibe. They don’t flaunt it, or try to draw attention to it, it just is. If women are secure within themselves they admire it, are even attracted to it like a pyro to a flame. They recognize and appreciate from where it came.

It makes me smile when I am in the presence of such women. It’s sexy, inspiring and female energy at its best! Its like admiring a woman who takes care of her body, you appreciate what they sacrifice to be their personal best. Just as I admire a woman who takes the responsibility of her own personal power to heart, not using it against the sisterhood, but to help her sisters with it.

The women who crave this type of power for the wrong reasons end up stepping backwards. They try to find ways to achieve it but aren’t willing to do the work to get there. You don’t gain personal power by stepping on or pushing other women down. You can’t take another woman’s personal power, unless they allow you to. Consider it a gift and pay it forward if you manage to steal a little!

Now lets not confuse powerful women with controlling women. There are control freaks all around us, but usually theses type of women only affect the work place, personally we can just let that friendship go. In business, these women don’t delegate, they command, they don’t lead, they boss and they certainly don’t inspire. When you delegate as a leader you show you have confidence in others and inspire them to do their best, which in turn benefits ‘the team‘.

Deep down if you peel the layers off these controlling individuals you find insecurity. They have yet to find their own mojo. These women need help, and by help I mean a helping hand. This is where the responsibility of those who have worked hard to attain personal power comes in to play. It’s their responsibility to help direct these women to the path that benefits everyone. If what you are doing personally or in business is not benefiting those in your circle, you need to question what your motivation is and what you are trying to achieve. The first step in finding your personal power is understanding we are all part of the same circle or tribe, we are ultimately all connected. We all benefit from working together. In the big picture it’s about finding happiness and joy, paying it forward, letting go while we do what we love, sharing!

So lets follow this through a little further to where I believe in my heart all women can thrive. Women helping women! We started Tara Cronica 5 years ago to inspire other women to live their most authentic lives. We are a support network if you will. Networking and sharing our personal stories for the sake of others to give encouragement, inspiration and allow personal growth.

There is no longer room for ball busting bitches in the board room, it’s not necessary or a positive way to motivate others. You don’t need to have that reputation to succeed in business or be admired in the corporate world or otherwise anymore.

What legacy do you want as a woman to leave behind? I ask myself that often, having a daughter who appears to have been here before. She already ‘gets-it’ at 12 years old!

I came across this show, and if you know me you know I don’t tune in to the boob-tube often so I think I was meant to see this particular series on women inspiring women!

The Stiletto Network…


Inspiring women, inspiring women, doesn’t get much better than that now does it! How could you NOT want to be one of these beautiful female energies!

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…and for those interested in the Women’s Power Wheel which is the photo I used above, here is a link of a site I found very inspiring 😉

P.S…my fav is the second from the left, classic black! 🙂

Tracy signiture

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Svaha S.S ~ SportsKids of the Year!

Small-SI-Kids-Dec-Cover Photo on 2011-07-27 at 19.27 #2Inspiring doesn’t do this story justice! Conner and Cayden Long are the 2012 SportsKids of the Year according to Sports Illustrated and boy did they get that right! Conner Long is only 9 years old, his brother Cayden is 7. At 4 months old Cayden was diagnosed with a condition called hypertonic cerebral palsy, which left him unable to walk or talk on his own. These brothers are inseparable even when it comes to sports…Triathlons!

Watch and see for yourself, you may want to grab a tissue!


 

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Tracy signiture

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Svaha Spirit Series…We Day ~ The Movement of Our Time!

We Day is a celebration that fills stadiums with leaders of all ages who earn their entry through volunteerism and philanthropy for 500 causes! The photo above is Vernon Secondary School! They took action last year and won the We Schools photo contest.

In Vancouver this year those who spoke included Magic Johnson, Archbishop Desmond Tutu who is a world-renowned South African social activist, heart throb Cody Simpson, Demi Lovato, and of course Craig and Marc Kielburger.

Less well-known, but no less inspiring, Me to We and Free The Children speaker Molly Burke captivated the audience with her powerful story. “This is our time to lead. And, we need to come together, and find our voice on this issue (of bullying)” Molly said. With a story that clearly resonated deeply with the audience, Molly and her best friend and guide dog Gypsy left the stage to a rousing standing ovation. Molly’s speech was captured by an audience member who I am sure went home with no voice as I would have. I teared up and got shivers throughout her powerful message!

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The Third Act ~ Jane Fonda ~ TED Talk

The Third Act…Jane Fonda is a powerful woman who has always had something to say. I am a HUGE fan of TED Talks. My Mom shared this with me, thanks Mom!

Older women are the largest demographic in the world who have the opportunity to pass down their wisdom to the younger generations!

Listen up…

I wanted to add a quote Jane Fonda read out from a book by author Viktor Frankl written in 1946,  ‘Man’s Search for Meaning.’ Viktor was a Holocaust survivor which s a 1946 book by Viktor Frankl chronicling his experiences as a concentration camp inmate, describing his psychotherapeutic method of finding a reason to live.

“Everything in life can be taken from you except one thing…your freedom to choose how you will respond to the situation. This is what determines the quality of life we live not whether we’ve been rick or poor, famous or unknown, heathy or suffering. What determines our quality of life is how we relate to these realities, what kind of meaning we assign them, what kind of attitude we cling to about them, what state of mind we allow them to trigger. Perhaps the purpose of The Third Act is to go back and try to, if appropriate, to change our relationship to the past.” ~ Viktor Frankl.

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Tough Mudder

Has anyone else heard of Tough Mudder? Tough mudder events are hardcore 10-12 mile obstacle courses designed by British Special Forces to test your all round strength, mental grit, and camaraderie. Tough Mudders have already challenged half a million inspiring participants worldwide and raised more than $2 million dollars for the Wounded Warrior Project. If you thought the Grouse Grind was a challenge check out this intro video.

Wow this is quite the feat for any athlete! I would love to try it but I honestly wouldn’t make it past the sign up day, I’d be so distracted by all the tough mudders! lol If you think you have more focus and discipline than I do, you can give it your best shot cause it’s coming to Whistler in the summer of 2012! I’m thinking it would be a great event to volunteer for…just sayin.

There is a pledge…

~ I understand that tough mudder is not a race but a challenge.

~ I put teamwork and camaraderie before my course time.

~ I do not whine – kids whine.

~ I help my fellow mutters complete the course.

~ I overcome all fears.

They also have a few Facts:

#1 – Marathon running is boring. And the only thing more boring than doing one is watching one.

#2 – Mudders do not take them selves too seriously.  You can’t show up without a sense of humour, they greet you at the finish line with a beer, a laugh and a rockin’ live band. Oh and your covered in mud!

#3 – You can’t complete a tough mudder course alone. You need your team mates to help you through the mud, ice-water, fire and 10,000 volts of electricity. Not to mention the 12 foot walls, underground mud tunnels. No one gets left behind!

 

 

 

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The Angel in the Clock ~

I was visiting my friend Tim via Facebook the other day and saw a post on his page with the words; The Angel in the Clock…A Fairytale about Time. How could I not click on that. Life doesn’t always give us a fairytale ending but when we do believe in childhood dreams, romance or everyday miracles of life, it gives us hope. It’s the pure innocence of believing which makes us all smile from deep within. When we stop believing in things that make our life rich and full, we stop living.

I visited The Angel in the Clock blog and loved what I read. I instantly wanted to share it on Tara Cronica. I connected with Mike Uriegas the Producer/Director and here we are! “Looking to give a stronger meaning to his work, Mike is currently developing a not-for-profit business model dedicated exclusively in sourcing funds to produce advertising for charities around the world as a mean to promote the work of thousands of people that are trying to make this world a better place.” My kinda guy!

The Angel in the Clock team is a group of outstanding, talented, passionate individuals all with a common purpose of making a difference in the lives of others. It doesn’t get much better than that!

The AngeL in the Clock

“This story follows the adventure of Amelia, an infirm girl that wants to stop time as a way to solve her delicate condition. While doing so, she meets the angel Malachi.

Malachi draws Amelia to the Fields of Time, a place beyond the mortal realm where hundreds upon hundreds of clock-castles float in the sky. In a quest to discover why time cannot be stopped, why life is worth fighting for, Amelia’s life will change forever.

A story about faith and dreams that will take your breath away.”

Enjoy the teaser…

The Angel in the Clock is a visually beautiful and audibly intriguing 4-minute animated short film promoting the cause of Childhood Cancer Canada, the country’s leading foundation dedicated to funding national research while delivering critical education, community, and connectivity programs to children with cancer and their families.

Take a moment to check out their site, you will be inspired just as I was to spread the word! It only takes one person to make a difference, it’s your turn!

The Angel in the Clock.

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Svaha Spirit Series: Ignite Your Light!

I spent the entire weekend watching young girls ignite their light. I get goose bumps every time I watch my daughters dance studio perform in front of a full auditorium. They have all come so far over the years. It gives me shivers to see such confidence. My daughter started out being the little girl who had to watch everyone else to make sure she was doing the right move. This year she didn’t just dance, she rocked it! Her confidence allowed her to feel the music and dance like no one was watching!

This is the song she listens to on our way to dance competitions. She told me she likes it because it inspires you to be yourself. She was brighter than the moon!

I am so proud of you and all your friends for being yourselves. You’re amazing just the way you are! xo


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Svaha Spirit Series: Go Inspire Go

Go Inspire Go (GIG) is a multimedia platform that uses Social Networking to inspire social change. They encourage viewers to use their powers, resources, talents and network to help others. That’s just awesome! GIG features inspirational character driven stories that we can all relate to because they are people just like you and I who do small things that create BIG change. Isn’t that what it’s all about! Using your voice to make a difference where a difference is needed!

Lily Gordon was only 10 years old when she reached out to help others. Africa was where Lily was headed to lend a hand. It only takes one small, even young voice as you will see by this video to make change, that’s all, then that one voice inspires another and well you get the picture! Go Lily Go!

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Svaha Spirit Series: M.C Yogi ~ Japa Meditation

I came across M.C Yogi from another site I found very encouraging called Go Inspire Go. I posted a video called Give Love a couple of weeks ago which is about just that…giving love away! Its what life is all about in my heart! Here is yet another great video this time with a meditation we could all use when starting something new!

Japa Meditation ~ Japa is a spiritual discipline involving the meditative repetition of a mantra or name of God. Mantra is a sound, syllable, word, or group of words that are considered capable of creating transformations. This meditation involves Ganesha, one of the deities best known and most widely worshipped in the Hindu pantheon. Mala beads are used in Japa meditation, which are a string of 108 beads to help you unlock the 108 doorways in the heart. You repeat your mantra 108 times. I have some which are made of Lotus seeds which is fitting with Arya Tara holding a lotus. Ganesha is widely revered as the Remover of Obstacles so when beginning a new venture it is a good meditation to do to clear the way of obstacles or gum that can prevent you from moving forward! I love when someone puts their own spin on what they do, as you will see at the end of M.C Yogi’s Japa!

Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha ~

Namaste ~

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Commercial gone wrong…you tell me?

I don’t watch very much television so I am not usually bothered by the commercial world that depicts woman as complete idiots in laundry ads or any other non creative 30 second spot. I think the ad agents are just plain lazy when they don’t even try to be creative and fall back on typecasting. I am not sure what bothers me more, the fact that they make women look stupid in the commercial or that they think we are stupid enough to believe their product works and therefore we NEED them? Mascara ads that claim their mascara will lengthen your lashes when we all know the 15 year old model is wearing fake ones. Another great example that sure rings true to me is the one where the Mom lets the dog run through the kitchen covered in mud, shaking, because she has paper towel and all the time in the world to clean it up! Ya right…as if? These ads make me NOT want to use their products just to make a point! Its like saying stupid people buy this! The only way to counter is to NOT buy it!

But when I saw the Nando’s Chicken commercial, I was really disturbed. They use ‘shock’ value in their ads to try and get you to buy their product. I’ve tried their chicken and thought it was ordinary and wouldn’t go back, regardless of how they try to promote it.

But here on Tara Cronica we are dedicated in ‘finding lyrical beauty in everyday happening’, we try to find the uplifting side of things and although Nando’s ads in my humble opinion don’t have an uplifting side to them they do however make other creative vignettes stand out, so if that’s their purpose, they did a great job!

I was going to post ‘Up Close and Personal with Tracy’, but that will have to wait till next week, having been distracted by this topic. I love when you see a great ad that leaves you with a smile on your face! This first video is my idea of a creative commercial/short film. The latter is what a commercial gone wrong looks like! You tell me…T-Mobile or Nando’s Chicken? I would have loved to be in the room when the ad agency made this pitch! “You want to what?…you sick bleeeeep! Really?” Just saying…

T-Mobile ~

And now Nando’s WT…?

I apologize if I turned you off your breakfast or lunch! 🙂

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Makes Me Think


Our newsletter subscribers will have already been introduced to the Makes Me Think site I discovered recently. It was featured in the newsletter under our “Surf’s Up” section.

I have found so much inspiration from this site that I really wanted to share it some more with all of you.  I will let the creators, Marc and Angel, explain the site’s concept in their own words:

Sometimes the most random everyday encounters force us to stop and rethink the truths and perceptions we have ingrained in our minds. These encounters are educationally priceless. They spawn moments of deep thought and self-reflection that challenge the status quo and help us evolve as sensible individuals.

Here at MakesMeThink.com, we call these thought-provoking life experiences ‘MMTs.’

I love rethinking old truths and perceptions and challenging the status quo so it is no surprise that this site is one I now visit regularly.  Anyone can upload their own “Makes Me Think” story directly. If it is thought provoking it will be published. A story always starts with ‘Today’ and ends with ‘MMT.’ All stories are limited to 300 characters.  It reminds me very much of the six word memoirs I once wrote about.  Quick, to the point, short on fluff but very powerful.

If they choose to, readers are able to vote on each entry.  They can choose either – Yes, that made me think too! Or – No, that made me sleepy.

Here are a few to give you an idea.

Today in downtown San Diego, I watched a blue collar Mexican man get harassed for being Mexican. It was a blatant act of discrimination. And the man actually began crying. As he left the office building, he took off his jacket. His t-shirt underneath read, “I love the USA!” MMT

Today, I interviewed a woman who is terminally ill. “So,” I tried to delicately ask, “What is it like to wake up every morning and know that you are dying?” “Well,” she responded, “What is it like to wake up every morning and pretend that you are not?” MMT

Today, I was working in a coffee shop when 2 gay men walked in holding hands. As you might expect, heads started turning. Then a young girl at the table next to me asked her mom why 2 men were holding hands. Her mom replied, “Because they love each other.” MMT

Today, I was traveling in Kenya and I met a refugee from Zimbabwe. He said he hadn’t eaten anything in over 3 days and looked extremely skinny and unhealthy. Then my friend offered him the rest of the sandwich he was eating. The first thing the man said was, “We can share it.” MMT

Today, after I watched my dog get run over by a car, I sat on the side of the road holding him and crying. And just before he died, he licked the tears off my face. MMT

Today, I asked my 6 year old son what he wants to be when he grows up. He said, “Mommy, all I want to be is happy.” MMT

It was really hard to pick just a few of these.  I should warn you that it’s also hard to stop reading once you start but I’ve found it is best to savour each one and allow yourself to think on it for awhile.  Perhaps you’ll publish one of your own.  I know you are a fellow inspiration seeker, that’s why you have joined us here on TaraCronica.com, so check out and enjoy MakesMeThink.com too.

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Sharing a Message of Hope

Our site here at Tara Cronica was developed originally to inspire. Inspire in many different ways; through stories, through artwork, through pictures and music, in fact to share anything that may have moved us.  And so it baffles me a little that it’s taken me so long to include the story of my friend and the daughter of my very close friends.  Hayley McDougall.  Here is someone that inspires me every time I see her.  Seeing Hayley so happy makes this the perfect time to make the introductions.

The following article was recently featured in the Vernon Morning Star and reminded me again how truly inspiring Hayley is…and wise beyond her years.  (Thank you for posting it on Facebook Lorellei. I would have missed it.)

Sharing a message of hope

By Cara Brady – Vernon Morning Star

Published: December 28, 2010 7:00 PM

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Mike Halliwell and Hayley McDougall celebrate their first Christmas with their daughter, Sloan, seven-months-old. McDougall, who has had a constant, severe headache for the past eight years, has had a small amount of relief from recent experimental surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona.

Cara Brady/Morning Star

Who wouldn’t admire Hayley McDougall? She’s a beautiful, stylish young woman who loves her partner, Mike Halliwell, and their seven-month-old daughter, Sloan. She has a university degree, had a good management job, and has an artistic sensibility that touches everything she does.

She also has a devastating, unexplained headache that has never, ever gone away, despite several surgeries and other treatments since May 2002.

“I want to talk about it to give hope and strength to others in chronic pain. I know this kind of pain can stimulate a desire to accept defeat, and a desire to end the struggle,” said McDougall. “My message to anyone struggling with severe levels of constant pain would be: pain can be so all consuming and take over your body and soul. You may not be able to control what it does to your physical body; however, how it affects your soul is completely your choice.

“So please fight for your courage, fight to keep your charisma, keep your joy, keep your hope, and keep participating in your life. It is not the life you saw for yourself but you still have the ability to make it a beautiful life. Take it one day at a time, five minutes at a time, and surround yourself with positive, amazing people.”

McDougall, a 1999 Fulton grad, was active in sports, including soccer, basketball, volleyball, snowboarding and equestrian events and was never sick until she woke up one morning with piercing pain in her temples. Doctors called the unbearable headache by a commonplace name — new daily head pain. It is extremely rare and affects only about 100 people, mostly young women, in North America.

McDougall is taking part in studies at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona in an attempt to find a cure for herself and others. She has had an electrode implant since 2007 and a recent surgery moved the leads (wires) closer to her temples.

“I felt a difference as soon as I woke up from the operation. The pain went from nine out of 10 to 8 out of 10 of a pain scale of 10 being the worst. That is only one point difference but to me it is a lot. I can feel the stimulation more through my skull and they say it may improve in six months,” she said.

She is also still dealing with the after effects of a two-week coma in 2008 which left her with a lot of memory loss of the past five to seven years.

“So many people tell me stories to try to help me remember that I don’t know if something is what I am really remembering or if it is a story. I don’t remember the first surgery. But I know I have the electrode, it’s like a bumblebee trapped in my head. I don’t feel immediate pain relief but it is supposed to train the brain in the long term.”

McDougall has had some good news in the past years. She met Mike Halliwell, a friend from University of Victoria days, and they started dating and have been living together for two years.

“I had been told I would never be able to have a baby so I didn’t find out I was pregnant until I was four-and-a-half months pregnant — big surprise,” she said.

Some of her doctors were hopeful that the hormone changes of pregnancy might help with her head pain but that did not happen. Halliwell, sales manager at Future Shop, noted that McDougall did sleep better and therefore had more energy to cope with the pain while she was pregnant.

“It’s hard to explain to people that there is pain that never goes away,” he said. “I see Hayley as an amazing person. She’s a wonderful mother. I know when it’s time to help out and when to make her laugh and when to give her a hug. Sloan has been so great for both of us.”

McDougall’s mother, Kathy Goldie, added, “Hayley makes an effort to always look good so people can’t tell how much pain she is in. Mike and I can look in her eyes and see it.”

Goldie credits the support of two local doctors — Dr. Bill Charlton and Dr. Alistair Duncan.

“Without them, we would be at a loss,” she said. “And my own work place, General Surgery Clinic, and the physicians there have been incredibly supportive with allowing me to travel with Hayley for medical treatment without losing wages.”

McDougall admits that it is an effort to keep looking good but that it is an important part of feeling the best she can for herself and her family.

“There is the emotional drain of constantly working hard to be present. It’s exhausting to get through a day and not just stay in bed and not try. Every minute of the day, I’m figuring out how to get through it. I still want to see the wonderful things the world has — Mike, Sloan, my family, “ she said. “Mike is great. He has the ability to take care of me without making me feel like I’m sick or being taken care of or being a burden. And Sloan’s smiles and giggles can get me through the day.”

While McDougall occasionally thinks about a time when she might be pain free and able to go back to work, she lives for finding the most joy in each day.

“People who have chronic pain should know that their pain is valid but you can make life better for yourself and those around you.”

She often thinks of her favourite quotation: “Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes it is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying: ‘I will try again tomorrow.’ (Mary Anne Radmacher.)

“Because I go to bed every night and assure myself that I will try again tomorrow.”

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“Position of Power” Tales of Mere Existence.

TracyOpinion , noun ; A belief or judgment that rests on grounds insufficient to produce complete certainty. A personal view, attitude, or appraisal.

An opinion is a belief that may or may not be backed up with evidence, but which cannot be proved with that evidence. It is normally a subjective statement and may be the result of an emotion or an interpretation of facts; people may draw opposing opinions from the same facts. We offer our opinion here on Tara Cronica. Each of us picks a topic that we find inspiring, educational , interesting or it may be a current affair out in the blogosphere, then we put our spin on it.

Opinion is what makes us all independent, unique individuals. The difference of opinion is what makes the world go around just as much as difference in cultural background or race. We may agree to disagree with our opinion but that’s okay too. I don’t push my opinion on anyone but I do love to give it. I’m just sayin…

“Position of Power” The Tales of Mere Existence ~

That pretty much sums it up! Opinion is your to give!

You can leave a comment, lol!

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Life History Media Ltd

Life History Media ~ telling the story of your life. “To forget one’s ancestors is to be a brook without a source, a tree without a root” chinese proverb.

I have recently joined my friend Anna Ceraldi-Zin and company on a venture that will capture history and make it available for the next generation. No, I am not leaving Tara Cronica, I just can’t resist working along side inspiring, confident, independent women! I can do it all, just watch me!

Whether the history you want to document is Family, Personal, Couples, Tribute Life History or Corporate History, Life History Media can capture it in a high quality format that will last for generations. The professional, broadcast quality HD documentaries are similar to those on The Biography Channel but with your history as the one featured!

I felt honoured that Anna even thought of me when this opportunity was created. To give you a little ‘history’ on how Anna and I are connected, Bonnie and I went to high school with Anna, we were and still are best friends! We have stayed in touch over the years, Anna mostly living back East having pursued a Journalism career which was extremely successful and has made her life very interesting to say the least! Anna has always been know to tell a colourful, captivating story so this venture suits who she is to a ‘T’! Anna is a very motivated and driven woman whom I have admired and been inspired by since we met. Her independence and strong will have made her not only a great Mother and role model for her daughter, but has shown that you can have both a family and follow your dreams balancing the two along the way! Anna is a life long friend whom I look forward to joining on this interesting journey. I am very excited to start out on yet another path in life with someone I admire and respect as much as her. Cheers Bella, here’s to making and documenting some history!

Take a moment to check out Life History Media’s website, where you will find all the details needed to turn your family photo’s and stories into a lasting legacy! If you are interested in having your legacy captured contact one of us at Life History Media and we would be happy to make it happen~

Life History Media Ltd

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Letter To My Daughter

Our site is about “inspiration”; about “finding lyrical beauty in everyday happenings”.  And so I’m amazed that we have not yet featured one who epitomizes those qualities so perfectly.  Dr. Maya Angelou.  I cannot let April (poetry month)pass without a tribute to this uplifting woman.

Dr. Maya Angelou is one of the most renowned and influential voices of our time. Hailed as a global renaissance woman, Dr. Angelou is a celebrated poet, memoirist, novelist, educator, dramatist, producer, actress, historian, filmmaker, and civil rights activist.

We don’t look anything alike, Maya Angelou and I.  We would never be mistaken for blood relatives of course, and yet this wonderful woman with her gentle spirit has a comforting motherly or grandmotherly effect on me.  I feel drawn to cuddle up on her lap and rest against her bosom while she recites her poetry and shares her stories.  (I know…I’d squish the poor woman at this stage in our lives but I’m not speaking literally here people!)

My step-daughter Lisa read a few pages to me from one of Maya’s books.  It was from a collection of her thoughts for each calendar day.  Her words were immediately inspiring and I went out in search for the book.  I haven’t found it yet, but I did find “Letter to My Daughter” and brought it home to cuddle up with instead.

The cover quotes the Baltimore Sun as saying “It’s a book to give to one’s daughter, mother, son or father, but definitely one to be read and savored.”

What better way to introduce this gem than to have Dr. Angelou speak it in her own words:

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Svaha Spirit Series ~ Celebrate What’s Right With The World

Sadly most of us tend to focus on all the things that we see around us that we feel are not right with the world.  Then we like to bitch and complain about them.
Dewitt Jones, on the other hand, discovered that by changing his perspective he discovered so much more.  He discovered what was right with the world every time he looked for it.

Dewitt worked as a photographer for National Geographic for twenty years. What they charged him with every time they sent him out to photograph something, was to celebrate what was right with the world, rather than wallow in what was wrong with it.

“When I was growing up, I used to hold that maxim I won’t believe it, until I see it.  Yet the more I shot for the Geographic, the more I realized that I had it backwards. That the way it really works is: I won’t see it, till I believe it. That’s the way life works.

Well I believed it. I believed the vision of the Geographic and the more I did, the more I’d see it in everything.

They’d send me out to places I’d never been. I’d believe there would be beautiful landscapes to photograph. They’d appear.

I’d believe those landscapes would be full of wonderful people. They’d be there.

I’d begin every assignment, every day, every shot trying to celebrate what was right with the situation rather than what was wrong with it.

When I started, I had no idea how powerful that vision would be, how much it would change my life.

But vision controls our perception, and our perception becomes our reality.

I strongly urge you to visit the Celebrate What’s Right With The World site to watch the whole film.  It is so worth the 22 minutes.  Very inspiring!

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You’re Awesome in a Wheelchair Josh!

“Follow your dreams and you will discover your true potential.” Josh Dueck

I haven’t met Josh yet.  I know people who know him because I live in Vernon and he is a local Vernonite.  I saw locals buying “Go Josh Go” tee shirts around town and I was curious.  People were really stoked about Josh’s run for medals at the Vancouver 2010 Paralympics.  They weren’t disappointed when Josh captured a silver medal yesterday in his first of four events.  Way to go Josh!!

In fact about 50 people from Kimberly, his home town, and from Vernon, where he lives now, stayed to cheer him on even through three steady hours of afternoon snow and after at least half of the crowd of 4,000 had called it quits, they were still there when their sit-skiing hero earned a surprise silver medal. Dueck said it was “huge” to feel the crowd’s energy. “I put a little bit in my back pocket just for those moments when I needed it.”

Josh learned to ski at thirteen and dreamed of becoming a professional skier.  He made the B.C. freestyle team, working to qualify for Canada’s national development team.

The financial demands of competition led Josh to coaching and sharing his passion for sport as head coach of the Silver Star Freestyle Ski Club in Vernon. It was then that the dream crash-landed.

Preparing students for the 2004 Canadian junior nationals, Josh was too fast on a demonstration jump. “Intuition said stop, but my ego made me go,” he remembers.

Overshooting the landing hill, he dropped 100 feet and completely smashed his body —breaking his back and flipping his world upside-down. Bent in an impossible direction, the spine was severed. At 23, Josh was paralyzed from the waist down.

Josh’s focus, dedication and commitment are so incredibly inspiring.  All the athletes competing in the Paralympics truly demonstrate to the world that the human Spirit is so much greater than our physical selves.  Congratulations to everyone competing and thank you for inspiring all of us.

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“You don’t stop doing things cause you Grow Old,”

You Grow Old cause you stop doing things.” ~ I wrote about Body Image and since then I have been getting messages from the Universe to STOP with the negative thoughts that seem to be deep within my DNA. This is what you can do, if you change your perception, you will see by this inspiring video! Thanks for sharing it with me Mom!

My ‘Gusto Post Card’ was my first message: (inspiring postcards sent to you via email each day when you sign up)

” You know how wise people reach a certain point in their lives and realize it actually doesn’t matter what anyone thinks of them? They just sort of grow beyond caring about that, and they start caring a lot more about what they think of themselves? And then they decide they’re going to do what they want to do and be who they want to be and live their lives as they see fit and love every second of it? Well, that wise person lives inside of you. Let that certain pivotal point in your life be today. Your number-one fan, Gusto  And oh…Be you. Live Fearlessly!

My 8 year old daughter is a dancer in competitions, perhaps one day she too will dance with her young grandson!

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In One Word…

tracy-pic3If you could describe each family members in one word what would it be? I decided to play this word game while on a short road trip with my family to see what we would come up. I asked each person to choose one word to describe the others.  Instantly without even a pause my 8 year old daughter piped up and said, “I got one”.  I told her she needed to think about it a little bit longer lol ! Looking back I wished I had asked to hear the word she chose without hesitation. As we drove I could tell each one of us was contemplating which word described the others. Here is how it all turned out~

My son was said to be athletic by his sister, intelligent by me and spontaneous by his dad. My sons beautiful big brown eyes lit up as he smiled when each of us said what we personally thought of him, athletic, spontaneous and intelligent. FANTASTIC !

My daughter was described as being unique by her brother, caring by her dad and compassionate by me which made her shine. Her face looked like it was her birthday for the rest of the car ride knowing she was described as unique, caring and compassionate.

Scott was described by my son as being helpful, he was fun as far as my daughter was concerned and the word that I chose was honest. What a great feeling to be thought of as helpful, fun and honest!

And last but not least I was said to be inspiring by my son, amazing by my daughter and loving by Scott. Now if that doesn’t make you feel warm and fuzzy inside AND put a smile on your face that shines right through from your heart I don’t know what will!

As we drove the rest of the way you could tell we had all bonded a little bit more from a simple word game. You really should try it, it changed our attitudes for the rest of the day!!

Tracy signiture

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Have you met TED?

Bonnie Johnson's PostTED is a favourite of mine and is a huge source of inspiration to me regularly.  In case you have not yet met TED, let me introduce you:

TED is owned by The Sapling Foundation, a private nonprofit foundation.

The goal of the foundation is to foster the spread of great ideas.  It aims to provide a platform for the world’s smartest thinkers, greatest visionaries and most-inspiring teachers, so that millions of people can gain a better understanding of the biggest issues faced by the world, and a desire to help create a better future.  Core to this goal is a belief that there is no greater force for changing the world than a powerful idea. Consider:

  • An idea can be created out of nothing except an inspired imagination.
  • An idea weighs nothing.
  • It can be transferred across the world at the speed of light for virtually zero cost.
  • And yet an idea, when received by a prepared mind, can have extraordinary impact.
  • It can reshape that mind’s view of the world.
  • It can dramatically alter the behavior of the mind’s owner.
  • It can cause the mind to pass on the idea to others.

Al GoreJane GoodallBrian Greene

From left: Al Gore at TED2006; Jane Goodall at TED2003; Brian Greene at TED2005

TED is devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading.  It started out (in 1984) as a conference bringing together people from three worlds:  Technology, Entertainment, Design.  Since then its scope has become ever broader.  Along with the annual TED Conference in Long Beach, California, and the TEDGlobal conference in Oxford UK, TED includes the award-winning TEDTalks video site, the Open Translation Program, the new TEDx community program, this year’s TEDIndia Conference and the annual TED Prize.

I’ve never physically been to a conference but I go to TED.com often and I’m always inspired by what I find there.  On TED.com, they make the best talks and performances from TED and partners available to the world, for free. More than 450 TEDTalks are now available, with more added each week.  All of the talks feature closed captions in English, and many feature subtitles in various languages.  These videos are released under a Creative Commons license, so they can be freely shared and reposted.

TED mission: Spreading ideas. (Quoted directly from their website)

We believe passionately in the power of ideas to change attitudes, lives and ultimately, the world.  So we’re building here a clearinghouse that offers free knowledge and inspiration from the world’s most inspired thinkers, and also a community of curious souls to engage with ideas and each other.  This site, launched April 2007, is an ever-evolving work in progress, and you’re an important part of it. Have an idea? We want to hear from you.

This would be where I insert a TEDTalks video but there are just so many too choose from that I couldn’t decide on only one.  So here is the link to the sites most favourite talks:  http://www.ted.com/talks/list

Here is a small list of just a few talks that I have enjoyed:

Chimamanda Adichie: The danger of a single story

Jill Bolte Taylor’s stroke of insight

Elizabeth Gilbert on nurturing creativity

William Kamkwamba: How I harnessed the wind

Eve Ensler: happiness in body and soul

Mary Roach: 10 things you didn’t know about orgasm

The talks are all usually around 18 minutes long each so before you start to explore them you may want to get comfortable; it’s easy to get watching these videos and forget everything else.

Bonnie

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