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Siobhan Kelleher Kukolic

Words to inspire the belief that we have all we need to be the change we wish to see.

Do the good that’s in front of you

I was listening to Sharon Salzberg, best-selling author and world-renowned Buddhist meditation teacher, on The Tim Ferriss Show.  She said something profound.  She said, “Do the good that’s in front of you, even if it feels very small.”

Sometimes life can feel overwhelming.  Out of control.  We have so many balls up in the air that our arms can’t possibly keep juggling.  But we are in such a frenzy that we keep going until something drops.  The ball or us. Continue reading

Arianna Huffington

I was listening to Arianna Huffington chat with Tim Ferriss on his podcast. As a 14-year-old growing up in Greece, she saw a picture of Cambridge University in a magazine and told her parents she wanted to go there. Everyone said that would never happen because she didn’t speak English and they couldn’t afford it. Except her mother. She said, “I’m sure we can make that happen.” So, Arianna started learning English, took the entrance exams, applied for and received a scholarship, and attended Cambridge. It changed the trajectory of her life. Beyond inspiring. Continue reading

All the things

Fresh school years starting.  A Canadian federal election in the next few weeks.  Continuing to navigate a global pandemic.  All the things.

In this space, there are discussions happening about what to do next, what steps to take, what is best for the individual, the family, and the community. Continue reading

Close

In David Whyte’s book Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words, he describes the word ‘close’ in part, “Close is what we almost always are: close to happiness, close to another, close to leaving, close to tears, close to God, close to losing faith, close to being done, close to saying something or close to success, and even, with the greatest sense of satisfaction, close to giving the whole thing up.  Our human essence lies not in arrival, but in being almost there: we are creatures who are on the way, our journey a series of impending anticipated arrivals.  We live by unconsciously measuring the inverse distances of our proximity: an intimacy calibrated by the vulnerability we feel in giving up our sense of separation.” Continue reading

We see them as we are

Adam Grant’s book Think Again reminded me of Anais Nin’s quote, “We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.”  And therefore, we can see them differently if we choose.

Some of the tips he offers for putting a new lens on our views include valuing curiosity, looking for information that goes against what you believe, focusing more on improving yourself and less on proving yourself, looking for people who will challenge you with feedback to help you grow, using questions rather than statements when listening to others, talking to kids at dinner about different topics and what they think about them, considering better practices rather than best practices to always raise the bar, and not asking kids what they want to be when they grow up. Continue reading

Beginning

Poet David Whyte has a book called Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words.  It really is breathtaking, and he reads some of his word-poems in Sam Harris’ Waking Up meditation app too.

Part of his description of the word beginning is, “Beginning is difficult, and our insulating rituals and the virtuoso subtleties of our methods of delay are always a fine, ever-present measure of our reluctance in taking the first close-in, courageous step to reclaiming the happiness of actually having started.  Perhaps, because taking a new step always begins from the central, foundational core of the body, a body we have neglected, beginning well means seating ourselves in the body again, catching up with ourselves and the person we have become since we last tried to begin.  The radical physical embodiment leads to an equally radical internal simplification, where, suddenly, very large parts of us, parts of us we have kept gainfully employed for years, parts of us still rehearsing the old complicated story, are suddenly out of a job.  There occurs, in effect, a form of internal corporate downsizing, where the parts of us too afraid to participate or having nothing now to offer, are let go, with all of the accompanying death-like trauma, and where the very last fight occurs, a rear-guard disbelief that this new, less complicated self, and this very simple step, is all that is needed for the new possibilities ahead.  It is always hard to believe that the courageous step is so close to us, that it is closer than we ever could imagine, that in fact we already know what it is, and that the step is simpler, more radical than we had thought: just picking up the pen or the wood chisel, just picking up the instrument or the phone, which is why we so often prefer the story to be more elaborate, our identities to be safely clouded by fear, why we want the horizon to remain always in the distance, the promise never fully and simply made, the essay longer than it needs to be and the answer safely in the realm of impossibility.” Continue reading

Where should we begin?

Psychotherapist Esther Perel has a wonderful podcast called Where Should We Begin that allows listeners to hear anonymous counselling sessions.  In one episode she mentioned was that there are two groups of people.  Those who believe there is always someone to help them and those who believe, in the end, you are always alone.  There are lessons in both mindsets.  One can teach how to be strong and independent and the other can teach how to lean in and embrace support.  We can all learn from each other. Continue reading

Intuition

I was listening to Chase Jarvis, photographer and CEO of CreativeLive.com, on The Tim Ferriss Show.  He spoke about intuition.  He said, “Our memories and our emotions, all of those things, that’s the equivalent of RAM.  We take in like a billion pieces of data a minute or a second or something like that.  And we only make use of a very small amount.  And the way I do think about this is the equivalent of RAM in the computer like what’s right there on the surface or just below the surface that we can recall.  And this theory about intuition is that while we are recording these billions of data points throughout our entire life moment to moment, that we do actually have an archive of those in our body, in the cells of our body.  And that intuition is sort of the parsing, what it is called when you refactor, you go back and look at data that’s already there, but you put it through a different process.  And to me, this process is intuition.” Continue reading

The trajectory of our lives

When my now 16-year-old middle child was just 7 weeks, I joined an adult Irish dance team for some exercise and adult time.  Little did I know that such a small decision would change the trajectory of our lives.

Our adult team ended up competing numerous times at the Eastern Canadian Championships and even placed second at the North American Championships.  I met some lovely women and realized I could do things I never thought I could do before.

And because of this journey, I ended up registering my first-born son, and then his brother and then their sister to take Irish dance.  It may not have been on my radar if I wasn’t already immersed in that world.  One beginner class led to years competing nationally and internationally. Continue reading

The Psychology of Money

I’m reading The Psychology of Money by Morgan Housel and I highly recommend it.  A collection of short stories about the money in our lives.  On page 25, one sentence jumped out at me like a lightening bolt.  That sentence was, “Bill Gates went to one of the only high schools in the world that had a computer.” Continue reading

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