Shape Your New Year / Shape Your Life

First off . . . are we really heading into 2015?!? How did that happen? Yowza.

IMG_0960I think New Years Eve is my favorite night of the year, and New Year’s Day my favorite day. Why? Because they incorporate two of my favorite activities: reflecting on blessings and preparing to receive more.

I also read recently that resolutions can improve our lives, so there’s another bonus to the whole transition thing; however, concentrating on outcomes vs. processes has been speculated to be the best way of not accomplishing those goals. For example, instead of “I’m going to lose 15 lbs,” it’s better to say, “I’m going to start going to the gym four times a week.”

Our approach to life essentially works in the same way. If it’s all about the outcome, the task at hand can become too daunting. Take writing, for example. If I set out at the beginning of a novel thinking, “I’m going to write a book,” it’s far more overwhelming than, “I’m going to write 500 words a day,” or “I’m going to create two chapters a week.” Little bits eventually accumulate into one great big one.

Consider each year to be a chapter. Let’s think about the things we’d like to see happen over the next 12 months and write a little bit each day toward them. And by “write,” I mean take some form of process oriented action that can move us forward.don't know

We can’t let the big picture keep us from using our cameras!

Besides, concentrating on outcomes can be limiting. Be open to new potential directions and let the results fall where they may.

HAPPY NEW YEAR, Y’ALL! May each of us move through our next chapter with an ample supply of creativity and health.


**This blog is also available at:


Why Be A Fly?

Flies. They’re everywhere in my home. Why? Because I have a dog, Toby, who insists on opening the screen door to my deck when I’m not home to bark at his four-legged neighbors. He also enjoys catching flies when he can and eating them. Yes, I could shut the sliding glass door to prevent this, but he relishes in being outdoors, so what the hell?

He wants out, and the flies want in. I envision a swarm of them buzzing outside the door when I leave for work taunting the little guy with chants of, “Open it. Open it now!”


Anyway, I always come home to find a handful of the ones that managed to escape Tobias P. Fluffigan’s evil clutches. I stood watching one of them recently as it buzzed around my bedroom in an annoying aimless pattern, and I pondered, ‘Why be a fly? What’s the point?’

Metal Model of a Fly

In other words, why be aimless? When I feel myself buzzing out of control, I force a landing and refocus. I’m a big fan of showing purpose through action. Aimlessness just leaves us vulnerable to the chomping jaws of wasted time or the crushing blow of an “I should have known better” swatter.

Fly Swatter

Aimlessness can simply buzz off – or, to quote my furry friend, “Snarl, grrrr, CHOMP!”

Leana’s blog can also be found on her website at

Click here to order Control Switch

The Steady Climb


Photo credit: Helene Anne Fortin

My dog is learning how to climb the stairs in our building, and yes . . . it’s adorable. He’d mastered stairs long before coming to live here but not the kind that have spaces between them. Ours allow you to see straight through to the bottom floor, and from his perspective, that’s pretty scary stuff. Each day, however, he becomes just a little braver and a little faster at reaching the top. The echoing chorus of “Good boy” that bounces through the stairwell after each flight is no doubt helping, as are the hugs he receives when there’s no further to climb.


I smiled a little broader at Toby’s accomplishment this morning, because we almost reached a sprinting pace climbing those big scary stairs, and because he reminded me of the challenges we humans face that can start with just one hesitant step.

New adventures – whether chosen or thrust upon us – come with a certain degree of apprehension. For some, that apprehension is minor. For others, it’s overwhelming. At times we’re able to keep our heads high and think only of our destination. More frequently, it seems, we maintain a clear vision of where we started from and are fearful of landing right smack back down there with nothing but wounds to show for our efforts.

Like little Toby, the trick is to keep repeating the required action until it becomes effortless. Don’t give up at the outset; don’t stop half way. If you can’t help but look downward, do so while your feet keep moving up. And for God sake, find someone who will cheer you on during your ascension and hug you at the top. Support is the greatest motivator, and your greatest gift. Receive it, give it, and wag your tail. Everything becomes less scary if you don’t give up.

Click here to order Control Switch

**This blog is also available on Leana’s website at:


Photo credit: Helene Anne Fortin

Another post, you ask? And so soon after the first one? Well, a new year is upon us, and brand new years beg to have introspective words slammed together about them and passed around for all to view. Personally, my mind boggles at the fact that we’re on the verge of 2012. I couldn’t even have fathomed this milestone as a kid, and certainly not without a Jetson’s lifestyle. Where is my jetpack?

I love new years eve, and I’ll be spending this one on Skype sharing a few laughs and long distance memories with a lifelong friend. We’ll ring in the new year and share the sounds of doors closing while others creak open. A peaceful end, and a joyous beginning, with resolutions dancing throughout cyberspace.

Huh… maybe a bit Jetson-ish after-all.

I also love making those pesky resolutions, and I’ve gotten a lot more savvy at them as I’ve grown older. I can even manage to keep a few of them going instead of letting them slide by mid February. Maybe because they’re more genuine in meaning and not just something frivolous to write down. Maybe it’s because I now know the results of sticking to a vision that brings me joy. Or, maybe it’s just that the path is clearer at long last. Hell, maybe I just like setting goals.

Many of my friends and family have suffered great losses this past year, and still others have found enrichment. Let’s take the time tonight to embrace the being-ness of it all and feel thankful that we’re not on this wild ride alone. We’re in it together.

I wish you all a year of pushed limits, broken boundaries, embraced challenges, and enlightening truths. Wipe the slate clean at midnight and take just one step toward that something you’ve always wanted to do. I promise you, you won’t regret it.

Let’s kick 2012 into orbit. Cheers!

And feel free to share your resolutions with me. I’d love to hear them. There’s power in sharing.