Celebrating Joy and Inviting Creativity

“Shiver Me Whiskers”

If you don’t have a child under the age of 12 this may mean very little to you but…I was cast in a scripted podcast about an alien invasion playing opposite one of the Octonauts!! Not just any Octonaut – Kwazii – the daredevil orange kitty with a mysterious pirate past! The Octonauts was a picture book series and then a TV show and a couple of movies (lunchboxes, bath tub toys – well done with the franchising bit) they are huge. Like Disney Princess/Beatles huge. At least in my house. Meaning my kids actually think something I am doing is cool!! I have arrived. I. Have. Arrived.

Gratitude 2.0

Okay I know, I know – gratitude?! Seriously Anne – can you come up with some unique content for Pete’s sake?! Listen – this is different.
It’s simple (and wonderful) to have gratitude for the easy stuff – your family, your job, coffee. Having gratitude for the hard things, the parts of life that challenge you, make you want to quit, cause you pain, that’s tougher. I was recently given an exercise to help practice gratitude for hard things with an easy way in – a short cut, a hack – you get me. It goes like this:
Dear Previous Iteration of Myself (5 minute ago Anne, 5 day ago Anne, 15 year ago Anne, etc.),
Thank you. Thank you for making it through that awful relationship that almost broke you. Thank you for having the courage to quit that job that wasn’t fulfilling your life’s purpose. Thank you for your strength to trudge through your sad day. I am so grateful that you made it through the hard bits so I could be here, in this place today. Doing these things. With these people. With more tools in my tool belt for the next time something hard comes. Thank you.
Try it – see what comes.

The Power of Play

This Ted Talk given by Shonda Rhimes seven years ago is beautiful and touching and empowering and a little bit gut wrenching. If you have 18 minutes, I believe the whole video is worth your time. If you have two minutes, scrub to minute 9. And, since I know you aren’t going to do either of those things let me give you the best bits:

“My hum was broken. I was doing the same things I always did, all the same titan work, 15-hour days, working straight through the weekends, no regrets, never surrender, a titan never sleeps, a titan never quits, full hearts, clear eyes, yada, whatever. But there was no hum. Inside me was silence. So what do you do when the thing you do, the work you love, starts to taste like dust? If the song of my heart ceases to play, can I survive in the silence?”

Then her daughter asks her to play and she does.

“Play is the opposite of work. And I am happy. Something in me loosens. A door in my brain swings open, and a rush of energy comes. And it’s not instantaneous, but it happens, it does happen. I feel it. A hum creeps back. Not at full volume, barely there, it’s quiet, and I have to stay very still to hear it, but it is there.”

Are you playing? Do you hear the hum?
Tell me! I want to know
Love is like infinity: You can’t have more or less infinity, and you can’t compare two things to see if they’re ‘equally infinite.’ Infinity just is, and that’s the way I think love is too.
-Fred Rogers