Baby Lion Swim Test

If you’ve been on the internet the past few weeks, you probably have seen this.

These lions cubs need to pass a swim test before they can join the big lions in the main exhibit. Since the big cat enclosures have water features, zoo staff need to that know if the lions fall in, they can keep their heads above water and get out of the pool. All these cubs passed, even though some of them took the round about way and a couple needed a boost.

I recently sent this video to my daughter. We are separated by several states and two time zones. Like most people these days, we have dozens of communication methods at our finger tips (quite literally). And often, frankly, we rely on cute animal videos to describe our feelings. Continue reading

Patterns, Habits and Finally Taking Action

Spoiler alert: I just sent the email.

I need to email Barry back.

A few months ago, I met Barry at an enneagram workshop. We got to talking about how cool it would be to have a discussion group just for Sixes, because as he said, we certainly need it. We exchanged emails for a while, then met for coffee and laid out some plans. I offered to come up with some content that we could start with. He agreed to create a description and some group expectations we could share. I send him my ideas to look over.

And then things stopped.

Not, to be clear, because he didn’t do his part. He sent me an email with his ideas and feedback on mine. It’s still sitting there in my inbox. As is his follow-up email.

Since sending my email to him I have been second guessing myself in ways that are far too familiar. Did I overstep my bounds? Was the material I came up with good enough? Am I being to assertive? Not assertive enough?

Continue reading

From Novice to Expert and Back Again

It was about six years ago. My daughter was about to leave for college on the West Coast. We were at a goodbye dinner with my college friend, Claire and her daughter Rachel hosted by Marie, Claire’s mom and my former boss. As the meal wound down, Marie invited us into the living room. There she began to what only can be described as “hold forth.”

You’re about to start a great adventure, she ostensibly told my daughter, but her tone included all of us. You are leaving high school. Right now you are an expert in high school. You know all the people, all the rules, all the ways to get around and get by. You know these things so well, you don’t even know you know them.

When you get to your new school, you will be a novice. You won’t know anyone. You won’t know where to go or what the rules are. You will make mistakes. The simplest things will seem hard. You will get frustrated. You’ll get scared. You’ll be angry with yourself. Things will feel wrong. You’ll worry this is a sign you made the wrong choice. You’ll think you chose the wrong school or you shouldn’t have moved so far away.

It’s not true. Continue reading