Book Review: Live Happy

It’s not often I come across a book I want to read a few times over. Live Happy: Ten Practices for Choosing Joy is one of those books. I read it three times so far!

Live Happy combines the science of happiness and ways you can create joy each and every day. From an attitude with gratitude to finding meaning even in the darkest of hours, we can all improve the quality of our lives through small, daily practices.

The book includes stories from people who worked through life’s challenges by simple acts they made each day. Some of the stories you’ll read are from celebrities like Alanis Morisette and Hoda Koth. Best selling positive psychologist, Shawn Achor, offers his research on happiness and is among the 40 stories available from all kinds of people. You will feel inspired about your own journey. Continue reading

A Mom’s Journey into Inclusive Play, Advocacy and Partnership

Inclusive playground visit January 2017.

Advocacy has many meanings. When I think of that word, I imagine protests in the streets to build awareness or a fight to right a wrong with a certain issue. It’s a way we rise up to support people who are under served. It’s how we support a cause to achieve a common goal for the greater good.

Parents with children who have disabilities are the strongest advocates I know. Between medical appointments, school IEPs, state rights and down to daily interactions in the community, we advocate for inclusion, support and compassion. A simple trip to a playground can be a battle of sorts when it’s not designed for all.

Our small town started promoting a new park build with a 10,000 square foot playground in 2016. I was so busy between my kids’ school, the work schedule and life I didn’t think much of the call for community comments. Continue reading

Planning a Petting Zoo Birthday Party for Special Needs Kids

Birthday party invitations are few and far between when you have child with disabilities. My daughter who is part of the SPED program at school has been invited to two birthday parties in the last 8 years. My son who is able-bodied and has a group of buddies he hangs with will get invited to birthday parties throughout the year.

Before we moved out of state from our hometown, it didn’t matter if the party invites came in for her because we had big birthday parties with grandparents, family and cousins. Living in Arizona, we don’t have that network so her parties became dinners with cake and a couple of my son’s friends. Continue reading

Book Review: Strengths Finder 2.0

Strengths Finder 2.0Do you know your strengths? It’s likely you’re not able to use them every day while at the office or home. So many of us move through life without truly tapping into our talents and strengths.

Strengths Finder has been around for many years. The first version came out in 2001 and my husband introduced it to me several years ago when he was at a large Silicon Valley corporation that used it.

Strengths Finder 2.0 is a reference guide by Tom Rath that is based on research from Gallup and Dr. Don Clifton, Father of Strengths Psychology. I call it a reference guide because you can use for years after you complete the assessment tool that comes with the book. You’ll begin with the first chapter that sets up the importance of understanding our own unique strengths and how they impact all aspects of your life. Continue reading

5 Tips for Career Success

Five Career LessonsWhen I think about my career, five moments stand out as game changers. I never forgot the valuable lessons I learned and how each one taught me a way to manage to stay away from a career meltdown.

1) Avoid cardiac arrest with a side order of divorce
One of my first corporate jobs was at a start-up. It just went IPO, but still operated in start-up mode. People worked 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on weekends. The perks of Silicon Valley companies come with strings attached. Don’t let the free food and dry cleaning fool you.  Continue reading

Book Review: Arianna Huffington’s Thrive

Book Review: Thrive by Arianna HuffingtonSometimes we get a wake-up call when we’re running at warp speed for too long. Arianna Huffington’s wake-up call came in the form of a collapse on her bathroom floor. To the public, she had it all money, power and fame. That’s how we define success, right?

Huffington was exhausted, lacked sleep and self-care. She was lucky that she survived her collapse that day. Some people don’t, but she took the message her body was giving her and turned it into her mission to help others redefine success and live on their own terms.

Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder. Continue reading

5 Ways to Live Your Dreams without the Fluff

Live-Your-DreamsAre you a dreamer, but already grown up? I remember being a kid and dreaming about becoming a championship horseback rider. I also wanted to ride skateboards for a living. I could do a mean 180 back in the day. I was a fearless dreamer.

I also became one of those young adults who didn’t know what I wanted to do. I went to college and obtained my communication degree. Yes, that’s communication not communications. There’s a difference. And then I fell into marketing and stuck around ever since. Continue reading

Book Review: #GIRLBOSS

#GIRLBOSS by Sophia AmorusoAre you a #GIRLBOSS? Sophia Amoruso sure is and her  New York Times bestseller shares just how she grew her business from its MySpace beginnings to a $250- million fashion retailer success story.

I had never heard of Sophia Amoruso or her business Nasty Gal other than seeing her book on the “must-read” lists. We had a secret Santa gift exchange at the office and I received the book as a gift.

I love learning about successful business women, not so much about their net worth, but the journey to success they experienced. So I was excited to read the book and I’m glad I didn’t read the reviews prior to starting it. They’re a mixed bag of praise and criticism. Continue reading

A Week Without Facebook

FacebookFacebook. Some people love it and others hate it. As a marketer, I find the amount of information collected about each user fascinating. As a user, it seems really creepy. We still use it though and many are addicted to it.

Viewing Facebook is such a habit that many don’t realize how often they do it. The constant scrolling of the newsfeed, stalking of friends and burying the face in the phone. We’ve all done it. We’re so used to Facebook being a part of our lives that it’s shocking when someone doesn’t have a profile. Continue reading