Sunday, December 23, 2012

Mojo Monday ~ Promise of Tomorrow

Courage doesn't always roar
sometimes courage is the quiet voice 
at the end of the day saying,
"I will try again tomorrow."
~ Mary Anne Radmacher

This has been one of my favorite quotes for many years.  Artist and writer Mary Anne Radmacher has inspired me for many years with her writing and her art.  Many of her books are included in my library of favorites.  Yet it is only recently that I picked up a copy of her book called Courage Doesn't Always Roar.   I was incredibly moved and thrilled to read an expanded version of this very quote in this book.  I felt a bit stunned after taking it all in.

I also definitely appreciated this particular part in the introduction, 

"Courage is a paradox.  
Courage is the willingness to aspire, reach, 
and again believe in the promise of tomorrow."

Hmmm...let those words linger promise of tomorrow.

Now let us journey together further into the exploration of courage with Mary Anne Radmacher....

Courage doesn't always roar
sometimes courage is the quiet voice 
at the end of the day saying,
"I will try again tomorrow."

It takes courage
to change your style,
your opinion,
the path you walk...
your hat!

It takes courage to let go
of the weighty parts of your past.

It takes courage
to find your own voice.

It takes courage
to reinvent joys,
to reinvent opportunities,
to reinvent dreams,
to reinvent connections...

to reinvent hopes
that you have set aside.

It takes courage
to recognize that rigid habit inhibits.

It takes courage to accept
that the way you "have always been"
does not determine the way you are.

It takes courage
to stand in a place
you didn't know existed...
and learn from a view
you previously couldn't imagine.

It takes courage to let go
of your assumptions
and fly your dreams as a 
soaring invitation to become
the best version of yourself.

It takes courage to stand for your convictions.
It takes courage to give up control.
And it takes courage to recognize you are perfect
just the way you are.

Change of any sort, requires courage...
Courage to write a new story of your life
with the pen of each day
...of every moment.

Tell yourself this little story when you need it - 

"I have the courage to stand
in whatever the weather brings...
and understand that everything is washable.
Everything is fixable,
and everything is replaceable
but my time and breath."

The opportunity for greater courage
comes in the most ordinary moments.

Courage sings the praises
of the sturdy souls and says to them,
"Today I will borrow a little of your courage
and see what garden I can water 
with the healing of my tears;
and what growing things I can nurture
with the strength of my laughter."

Courage is defined more by its contrasts 
than it sameness,
more by its risks
than its security.

Courage is content to make no excuses.

Courage, dressed in intentional change,
is the most ferocious response to fear.

Courage acts without regret.
Courage laughs right out loud.

Have the courage 
to walk out the door
and let possibilities discover you.

Have the courage 
to wander and parades will find you.


As you weigh the many possibilities of your day
measure your action with this question,
"How would I most like to remember this?"

Your chosen answer becomes
your natural action and
your unique opportunity 
for courage.

Perspective in the large.

Grace in the small.

An open hand.

A practiced pause.


Courage doesn't always roar.

Mary Anne Radmacher has touched the hearts of tens and thousands with her popular cards, books, posters, journals, and gift books.  She conducts workshops and writing seminars on living a full, creative, and balanced life. 

She is the author of the following books:
Lean Forward into Your Life
Us: Celebrating the Power of Friendship
May You Walls Know Joy
Courage Doesn’t Always Roar
Live with Intention
Live Boldly

Please visit her website:

A new year is approaching.  

2013 will be here within a week.  

Surrender your fear.

Embrace change.

Center yourself.

Stay true to your voice.

What is it that you want in 2013?

Now is also a great time to write yourself a series of Permission Slips!  Be courageous.  Set yourself free to be you ~ and to do those things that make you happy...and then let the rest be.

 You can just let it be.

I looked back at a list of Permission Slips that I had written for myself as part of a Cosmic Cowgirl Sparking session.  I have the date down as December 22nd.  I was inspired again by what I had listed.  Here is that list:

I give myself permission to be different than I was 10 years ago.
I give myself permission to like and love who Michelle is today.
I give myself permission to not be perfect.
I give myself permission to love my imperfect and over-sized body.
I give myself permission to be content.
I give myself permission to be an imperfect parent and partner.
I give myself permission to lighten up.
I give myself permission to not get it all done.
I give myself permission to write without editing.
I give myself permission to relax and have fun.
I give myself permission to make mistakes AND NOT beat myself up about them.

What would you include on your Permission Slip list?

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Mojo Monday ~ When I Grow Up

When I grow up...I want to be a sheep racer, probably said no one, ever. Yet in the photo above, just look at the joy on those little girl's faces as they race away.  Of course, my animal loving nature does have me hoping that the sheep were having just as much fun.

Can you recall as a child what you wanted to "be" when you grew up?

Quite often when you ask a child this question the response has to do with the type of job they imagine having when they are an adult, and in their limited exposure to vocations, it is often things like astronaut, fireman, teacher, actor, singer and so on.  

As we grow up, discover more about ourselves, our likes and dislikes, our preferences, our strengths and weaknesses, we are usually still being directed by our parents, our teachers, and other mentors, to figure out what we want to do for a living.  As we grow up we learn about other job possibilities and most often the statement "When I grow up" still ends in some kind of declaration regarding a career or how we think we might make a living.  

Have any of you said, or heard a child say "When I grow up I want to be happy."?

Or how about "When I grow up I want to be whole-hearted." or "When I grow up I want to be philanthropic." or "When I grow up I want to be compassionate and full of grace."?

I love the quote by John Lennon featured above, "When I was 5 years old, my mom always told me that happiness was the key to life.  When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up.  I wrote down 'Happy.'  They told me I didn't understand the assignment, and I told them they didn't understand life."

What I've realized in my advancing years is that while there isn't anything wrong with figuring out what we want to do, however it doesn't capture the whole picture or touch upon some of the more important aspects of our life journey, such as the lives we touch, the care we show for others, and the love we infuse into the lives of others.

Some people eventually figure out what makes their spirit soar and it may end of coinciding with what they do for a living.  If not, hopefully they will still find how they earn their check to be somewhat fulfilling, and in their off time they will pursue their deeper soul stirrings.  

For those still trying to figure things out, be it how to be really happy or what kind of career to pursue, recapturing the playful spirit of a child can be helpful in exploring the possibilities. In this day and age is it rare for people to stick with one career.  In fact if they are to really seek out those things that bring them joy, contentment and inner peace, they may change direction several times in their lifetime.  

Consider role playing, trying on different hats so to speak, just for fun.  

Ask yourself the question "If I could do anything I would..."

Consider this fun list in the photo to the left for inspiration.

What about becoming a rock star, cowgirl, tap dancer, gypsy, star gazer, fairy godmother, cupcake spinkler, or even wonder woman?

Now while none of these may be a way to make a living, simply pretending or trying on a new persona, could make living a lot more creative and fun.  

Consider the possibilities of what you could be when you are grown up....because whether you are 24, 34, 44, 54, 64 or 104, you still have room to grow.