Become #StigmaFree This Week …

NAMI StigmaFree

Now more than ever, mental illness is part of the national discussion, as decisions are made on how to move forward to address societal concerns.

However, mental illness is also an intensely personal issue which affects people, their families and friends, and our local communities.  This is not something happening to someone else far, far away. 

We owe it to ourselves, our families, and our communities to join in this conversation and to speak from a place of knowing, and not from a place of ignorance and fear.

The message this week is pretty simple:  Lead through example as you publicly commit to learn more about mental illness and how you can help.

Start or continue your process by clicking on the image above or GO HERE to begin your learning process by promising to be #Stigmafree about those who suffer from mental illness.

Join me … I signed on to educate myself so I can be part of the solution in the Heartland ….


“But This Is Better” …

Gas PumpI stopped to get gas on my way to the doctor’s office this week …

The other day, I made an appointment for a routine medical procedure over the telephone.   On my way to the appointment, I stopped to get gas.

About fifteen minutes after making the appointment, an email arrived with a link to a website which confirmed the reason, time, and location of my appointment, along with detailed preparation guidelines and driving instructions. 

As I drove to the appointment, I stopped to get gas and allowed the gas pump to guide me through what to do when, gave me options from which to choose at various points, and accepted my plastic money, with a cheery but electronic “thanks”.

“Here, Let Me Google That …” 

... apparently the final argument-ending phrase of our times, although the tendency of some folks to ignore what is known to continue to believe what they want to believe does weaken it.  However, that is a topic for another time. 

When we want to know something, we look it up online.  We are now at a point where we are irritated or disappointed when we cannot find an answer to our question online, no matter how esoteric or exotic may be that question.

We live in a world increasingly focused around human to computer interactions, rather than human to human.  We now expect to receive electronic help.  When I go online to visit some website and a question arises or I want to know something, I check out the drop-down menus, click on helpful icons, and seek the Help symbol when all else fails.

BACK THEN:  “Directory Information.  How may I help you?” …

Continue reading

A Peril of Time Travel …

MemoriesAt least now I can say I have a time machine …

Interesting that neither memories nor dreams are real, isn’t it?

Memories reconstruct what has been in the past and dreams give birth to our visions of what might be in the future.  

Both exist ONLY in our minds…

The following thoughts come from comments originally made in response to a post on the Lead Change Group blog by Alan Utley, who thoughtfully and articulately discussed the use of stories to motivate and influence.  You should go read his post.

I often used to tell a story about how a youthful shop-lifting event shaped my values. In the story, I owned up to my misdeed (after some angst) and received a reward  for doing so. I once told that story in front of my mother … who then categorically dismantled that version of my own memory. Continue reading

What’s Your Piece? Guest Post by Henry Kimsey-House

Today’s Guest Post comes to us from Henry Kimsey-House, the co-author with Karen Kimsey-House of Co-Active Leadership:  Five Ways to Lead launching this week.   Henry has much wisdom to offer us around effective leadership … read on for proof:share_16

What’s Your Piece?

What’s Your Piece of this evolutionary leap we are in the middle of right now? Without you, there is a hole in the fabric of all life.

What seems like an eon ago, Karen and I hosting a leadership and coaching summit in Florida and we handed out puzzle pieces to all 450 or so people and had them all work together to create a huge jigsaw puzzle that became the backdrop for the whole Summit.

Then, at the end of the Summit, we handed out a second piece from a duplicate puzzle and had each and every one of the participants look into their lives and into their worlds and look deeply at that promise, that declaration, that dedication that they are to this unfolding story of transformation and evolution that is the Human Journey.

Between the building of the puzzle and the creating of the personal declarations, we journeyed through a story that began in the recognition of who we are as human beings and what have we created both in ourselves and in our world. We examined the shadow and the light, the good and the bad, the life affirming and life destroying behaviors that have gotten us to this step, or this leap, of the evolutionary journey that we are all on. Then, we began to move up the path and notice who we were walking with and how were we making the journey.

We started to become conscious that we were indeed on a journey, we were running down the diving board and getting ready to leap, dive, and fly into the chaotic swirl of mystery that is the Unknown. As we prepared for that leap, we realized that we needed to open up our consciousness to a larger responsibility for life. We looked into ourselves and each other to determine what we could see of that mystery.  We formed declarations and intentions for ourselves and did our best to create a collective promise as well. We began to see that we can’t just focus on our own individual survival and fulfillment, and saw that we need to also be able to open up and connect to the greater collective of humanity and indeed all of life and find a shared declaration as well.

As I stood on the stage or in the back of rooms, roamed the beach and the hallways, sat in planning meetings, ran microphones, shared meals, and engaged in many brilliant conversations, I was flying. I was soaring in and out of the mystery and yet my feet were solidly on Mother Earth. I was aware that a transformation was occurring in me as I nibbled on my lettuce and chatted with the person across the table from me.

I was conscious of growing my capacity to hold a larger and more complex picture or map of what was occurring around me and within me. I was solid, earth-like, and protective as the bear, I was soaring, air-like, and expansive as the eagle, and I had a little turtle in my pocket to remind me all about taking it slow, letting it in and being patient with the way things were unfolding.

So here I am, arriving along with everyone else at the place where we all make our declarations and promises. Where we each name our Piece of this great puzzle of life’s evolution.

So, what’s my piece?

My piece is to live my life on purpose.

My purpose is:

I am spirit awakened.
I fill the universe with limitless light, wondrous love, and enthusiastic life.
I am the way of peace and the cosmic belly laugh of joy and creation.
I wake up humanity to its aliveness and creativity.
I point and protect the evolution of human consciousness.

Discovering your piece is one of the first steps to becoming a better leader and a more impactful human being. When we engage with our core purpose, recognizing the significance of our “puzzle piece,” we enrich all of humanity.

Tell me: What’s your piece and how did you discover it?


Re-worked from original posts on Henry’s blog

promo_02Henry Kimsey-House is the co-author of Co-Active Leadership and Co-Active Coaching. He is the co-founder of the Coaches Training Institute (CTI) where he currently serves as Lead Designer. Learn more about Henry’s work at or connect with him on Twitter @henrykh 

A Day of Peace … Well, It’s a Start

International Day of Peace Poster

I call on all warring parties to lay down their weapons and observe a global ceasefire. To them I say: stop the killings and the destruction, and create space for lasting peace.”

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

On this annual day of focus on conflict around the globe, I have some suggestions for your further attention on this and the following days of our lives:


GIana Consulting:  

Read Chery Gegleman’s blog series on peace by her and some special guests.  Chery has created a strong series of posts around the theme of peace.  This is not a collection of fuzzy-thinking feel-good pieces, but solid and useful observations about how we can do better.

The Arbinger Institute:  

Read The Anatomy of Peace: Resolving the Heart of Conflict by the Arbinger Institute.  It’s a short book in narrative form with a relatively simple message about how we interact with each other can either increase or decrease the conflict we experience.  Either way, our choice …


Watch this Youtube video about Peace Day and consider the presence of conflict in your personal, communal, and global lives.

Then take some quiet and protected time to consider how conflict affects us all as we live on our shared planet, and identify some ways in which you can act to reduce or eliminate conflict in your own and other’s lives.

Then act on what you have learned.

Be one of the billions thinking about, working on, and praying for peace today … and tomorrow.