As we move into the autumn season, I thought I’d devote some blog real estate to a topic that seems to keep coming up when I speak to clients, friends, and fellow coaches.

That feeling of “meh”. That state of being okay, but not great. It comes with the change of season from warm, sultry days of late summer to the crisp air of fall and our natural biorhythms set to hibernate. It’s also enhanced by a daily barrage of bad news and the disruption most everyone is experiencing. It seems we are so cosmically misaligned that it is no wonder so many people are expressing a feeling of general lassitude or existential ennui…even BEFORE the pandemic arrived.

All of that inspired me to think about ways to feel great and get your mindset in a positive place. Before the list, I have to state that I am a huge believer that happiness is a choice and that, while we cannot control many of the things around us, we can certainly control how we react to it. Here are some little actions you can take to help right your world and feel better in general, even in the face of a chaotic world. Trust me – if you are feeling stuck, or overwhelmed, or just “over it”, try at least three of these and see if your mood and outlook hasn’t improved, even just a little bit.

  • Take a shower. It is amazing how the simple act of being clean makes everything better. If you feel stuck or frustrated, something as simple as the literal washing away of the day can work wonders to restore your positive outlook.
  • Give yourself a tune-up. I loathe the expression of self-care; I think it feels indulgent, but I do agree with the sentiment behind it. Like a shower, taking care of your health (mental and physical) goes a long way in righting your attitude. Be sure to eat healthy foods. Try to get some exercise, even if it is just low impact indoor exercise via YouTube. Set aside time to give yourself a simple manicure. No matter what it is, energy invested in personal care matters to your mindset and well-being.
  • Accomplish little tasks. When you are feeling off-kilter or scattered, checking things off a to-do list can give us a sense of satisfaction and can act as an impetus for us to accomplish more. Consider setting EASY little goals like making the bed, tidying the desk, unloading the dishwasher, or picking up the dry cleaning. Even little accomplishments make us feel better about ourselves. Even on the worst day, checking off something can be a massive victory!
  • Focus on helping another. Volunteerism is wonderful but right now, it is not really that possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t make an impact. When we help others, we get ourselves out of the often-dangerous spiral of negative self-thought. Focusing attention on helping someone else gives us purpose, social connection, and a reason to persevere. Doing things for others goes a long way to keeping up a positive mindset. Write a Thank You note to an unsung hero in your life. Use Zoom or other video conference tool to call a friend and let them vent. Consider finding a charity for which you can devote any free time. Check out VolunteerMatch.org for face-to-face and virtual volunteerism opportunities.
  • Put on real clothes. With so many of us working at home, this is particularly relevant. When you stay in PJs or lounge wear too long, you begin to get sloppy in self and that can be a slippery slope. Putting on real clothes helps you get into a mental state of productivity and help with well-being. You don’t have to put on shoes, unless you want to, but a smart blouse or sweater and slacks or jeans make a world of difference. Ask yourself if you would feel comfortable if you opened your front door and your bosses’ boss was standing there. That is a good litmus test for what you are wearing at home. Keep in mind, this doesn’t apply to Sunday. I am a firm believer in staying in PJs one weekend day, if at all possible.
  • Accentuate (and write down) the positives. If you are feeling really stuck, get out your journal and write down all the positives in your life. This list should be long. Include things like your job, your safe home, your working car, your pets, your children, your health, your wardrobe, your ability to see/hear/walk/taste/feel, your friends, your family, the leaves on the tree, the birdsong, the warmth of the sun on a cold day, the first spring bloom, the freshness of a wind gust, and so on. See? There is a lot there. If you can’t come up with a single positive, write down your ability to think, to reason, to breath. Life may not be perfect, but it sure beats the alternative.
  • Write it down. – then let it go. While you have your pen out, write down all the things that are upsetting you. Bad news, annoying people, failure of an idea, a breakup with a friend, or something else that is causing you to feel out of sorts. Write it down and then (HERE IS THE CHALLENGE) let it go. You have to focus on what you can change and not waste emotional energy on what you can’t. Writing it down is cathartic but after you’ve gotten it out, leave it there and move on. Acknowledge it, make a plan to remedy it (if it needs a solution), and move on.
  • Take a walk. Anytime you get your blood pumping with a brisk walk, you give yourself a good dose of happy endorphins which make everything a bit brighter. On your walk, engage with the world around you, look at the sky, take note of what foliage you see, and smile at the people you see. If something prevents you from taking a walk, be sure to just spend time looking out the window at the world going by. Try to get some sunshine and fresh air into your life, even 10 minutes a day.
  • Get stoic. The philosophy of the Stoics (Aurelius, Seneca, Epictetus, and others) is aligned to the good, the bad, and the indifferent and how we react to the world around us. Stoics knew that life is not guaranteed so it was important to live right, do good, and not to worry about the future. This focus on the now is a critical element of feeling good about yourself. You have a plan, you have contingencies, now get busy living in the NOW.  Celebrate even the little things, host a video chat with a group of friends, really focus on how great the first sip of coffee tastes as you look out the window on a beautiful day…and then, you can let the reality of our new way of living sink in armed with the mental fortitude of the right mindset.

Remember, you are capable of anything and worthy of everything.

Thanks for stopping by!


Hello and welcome (or welcome back) to Clarity Coaching Collective!

On this Monday morning, and after a very challenging prior week for all, it is a whirlwind in my little corner of the Internet. It seems like every day I am taking on new clients to do some meaningful (and really fun) transformation work but to mark this Monday, we are taking a moment of pause (and a fresh cup of coffee) to celebrate the little things that can make each day just a bit better.

I can’t recall from whom I got this idea, but I thought it would be positive way to start the week if I shared  some “likes”. You know, these are the little things that make you smile, cheer, breathe a sigh of relief, or just lift a bit of weight off your shoulders. With the daily barrage of bad news, COVID-19 information whiplash, ridiculous antics from governments around the globe, and impending doom from every news outlet, we need to take time to center ourselves and find the beauty in the simple things. If we focus on it, we can find a LOT to like.

For me, some of this week’s 👍🏻 include:

  • 2 new clients ready for transformational coaching
  • a handwritten letter from a dear friend (such an unexpected joy!)
  • a fresh journal with 249 blank pages of possibility

Now, I want to hear from you. What are your “likes” for this week? What are the little things that make you smile? Share with me in the comments and thanks, as always, for stopping by!


I was scheduled to facilitate a client session this week but it has been canceled, as have so many events in the past 5 days. On a Monday morning, with spring in the air, the last thing one wants to think about is a pandemic, yet here we are.

A global health crisis is at our doorstep and we need to be aware of what is going on and how to protect ourselves and our loved ones. I can’t stand fear-mongering or how the constant barrage of doom from the media whips people up so let’s go at this with a healthy dose of optimism, knowing that there are some things we can do to control our exposure.

Let’s get started with some basic information (I sourced all the information here from the World Health Organization and the Center for Disease Control.

  • COVID-19 is a novel Coronavirus, which means that it is a new strain of a Coronavirus.
  • Antibiotics will NOT help. Antibiotics are used to treat bacterial infections. COVID-19 is a virus and therefore is unaffected by antibiotics.
  • According to the CDC, older adults and people who have severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease seem to be at higher risk for serious illness.

This is no joke but we deal with flu season every year and, while COVID-19 is spreading, we can get in front of it.

The CDC and the WHO both report that the majority of COVID-19 cases are/will be mild. As with many viruses, the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions are at greater risk of developing more severe cases. If you are generally healthy, your risk is lower. To help reduce your risk of contracting the COVID-19 virus, It is essential to protect yourself.

Here are some steps that we should all practice, regardless of COVID-19 or not.

    • Scrub up! Washing your hands thoroughly and frequently, for at least 20 seconds with vigorous rubbing using soap and water or an alcohol-based sanitizing liquid or gel. This is true even when there is no pandemic. Hand washing it critical to health given all the surfaces we touch minute-by-minute.
    • Get in your bubble! It is recommended to maintain at least 3 feet (1 meter) of personal space between you and others (although I’ve heard 6 feet, too). This can prevent any spray from a cough or sneeze getting on you and then, being transmitted to your eyes, nose, or mouth. If you cannot maintain that distance……
    • Hands off! Given how COVID-19, the flu, and other viruses spread we should all avoid touching our faces throughout the day, unless our hands are clean. According to one study, the average person touches his/her face 23 times per hour, with almost half of those touches being to the eyes, nose, and mouth. Imagine everything else you touch in the average day and then, not washing your hands before you touch your face. This is a hard habit to break and, while masks are not recommended, they may help you realize how often you are touching your face.
    • Practice your etiquette! Coughing and sneezing are unavoidable. Allergies, the common cold, the neighbor’s cat, Marie Kondo-ing your attic – all of these thing can make you sneeze and cough but it is important (just like it has ALWAYS been important) to practice proper etiquette when you do. Don’t cough open-mouthed. Don’t sneeze with gusto (those who waaaahhhhh-chhhhhooooooo, drive me mad!). For either situation, cough into a tissue, immediately dispose of that tissue and wash your hands. But what if you can’t do all of those? I’ve solved that for you:
      • If you don’t have a tissue, cough/sneeze into the crook of your arm (elbow). Wrap your arm over your nose and mouth to make sure you are impeding the spray.
      • If you can’t throw the tissue away, tuck it into a plastic sandwich bag to be disposed of later.
      • If you can’t wash your hands immediately, use hand sanitizer or rubbing alcohol.
        • If you don’t have hand sanitizer or rubbing alcohol, do all you can not to touch your face until you’ve had a chance to thoroughly wash your hands.
    • Stay home! If you have symptoms or are ill, do everyone else a favor and stay home. Don’t “power through” and go to the office, the gym, the party, etc. It’s one of the reasons this virus is spreading like it is. If you have a cough, a fever, or difficulty breathing contact your doctor or hospital to report your symptoms before going in.
    • Leave the masks for the professionals. Likely, you will not need a mask. Health officials have stated that a mask is only necessary for those who are already ill and/or caring for others. If you care for a parent or a child and are sneezing or coughing, a mask may benefit. Check out the CDC and WHO websites to get all the latest information. DO NOT get your Coronavirus updates from social media. There are scams, panic inducing stories, and lots of false advice.

The big question is: Should you cancel your travel? Many businesses and organizations are making that answer easy by canceling events, conferences, and meetings. Many are moving to video conferences to reduce the need for face-to-face interactions.

Personal travel is a bit trickier and I would advise that you do what makes you comfortable. If you are traveling to Australia in May, are in good health and practice good hygiene, I would say your chances of enjoying your trip are high. If you are just getting over pneumonia now and slated to visit Tuscany in early April, I might postpone.

On a personal soapbox, I would like to add that it is about time more companies explore telecommute/remote work options. It is hot now as a way to fight the spread of COVID-19, and hopefully, those that do this as a new thing now realize the benefits long after we’ve solved the current crisis. As someone who has been remote for the better part of 2 decades, I applaud the companies who have made this a part of business-as-usual. Telecommuting saves times, reduces carbon emissions, lowers overhead, increases employee engagement and, in many cases, increases productivity.

There you go, I hope you found something useful here. I would add that COVID-19 is serious but solvable, so let’s not panic, let’s remember that ‘this too shall pass’, and let’s remember to be kind to all we meet (even if we don’t shake hands with them).

Stay safe, stay sane, and thanks for stopping by!