You are doing better than you think, just ask!

Dear Readers,

I am in the midst of taking a course on personal growth and advancement and part of the homework assignment is to ask your nearest and dearest what they think are 3 personal strengths you possess.

The point of this exercise is to get you to see things about yourself that you don’t really see (usually because you are focused on challenges and opportunities) You are also supposed to list what you think your strengths are and not focus on your weaknesses which is where most of us tend to spend the most amount of time.

I don’t know what I was expecting to hear but it was really gratifying and humbling to hear things about myself I have not ever thought of as a strength but

“something I just do”

It reaffirms something I have long believed, we are all much more influential and powerful than we give ourselves credit for being. Put another way, we are our own worst critic. So I challenge you to do this for yourself, ask your circle what they see as your biggest strengths and be prepared to really take it in and not brush aside that assessment.

Think about it!

“When you build on your strengths, the activities using those strengths come more easily to you” -Deepak Chopra

I don’t care if this makes people mad-

Sometimes your passion for the topic needs to be stronger than your passion for people to like you. For a former people pleaser like me, this is a hard won lesson.

I gave a speech recently at my Toastmasters Club about how it is STUPID to TEXT and DRIVE- Check it out..Let me know your thoughts at or comment below!

Here is the video of the speech


You don’t have to do it all, its okay to ask for help

Dear Readers, I consider myself to be a very independent, take charge kind of woman so it’s always surprising to me how freeing it is to hand off something to my husband or close friends to handle. The offer comes so often, “let me know if I can help.” “Let me know what I can do” but we so rarely take it!

When was the last time you asked for help or support? Are you afraid to do that? Why? There is a reason that TEAM stands for





Don’t be scared to ask for help, the response you get might REALLY surprise you! helpothers

Speak it, Write it, and then DO IT!

Dear Readers, this is not a new concept.. it’s actually been around long before I drew a breath, but its a worthy reminder- here are just a few quotes to illustrate

A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work. -Colin Powell

All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them. – Walt Disney

In order to carry a positive action we must develop here a positive vision. -Dalai Lama

Last night I was privileged to take part in an activity called “Vision Boarding” and though I have never done it before I really enjoyed thinking about my life and what is coming and what I want. The range is as broad or as narrow as you DESIRE.

This is all about YOU. Being selfish is not only allowed its ENCOURAGED in this exercise.

Do you want a different career or move up in the job you have? Do you want to travel more or less? Do you want to be something you are not today? Put it in writing or put it in pictures and then put it in FRONT of you so you have a visual representation of what you are working towards and BELIEVE it!

It has already made a difference in the choices I am making and more importantly the words I am using to describe myself and my future.

THINK ABOUT IT! and then go do it!VisionBoard

Is your friendship on life support?

Dear Readers,

My blog is directly related to the things that happen or don’t happen in my life and I do my best to be honest with you, my readers, in the hope that something I say will inspire you to action in your own life. So here is my question-

Is your friendship on life support?The more important question is- Should it be or is it time to pull the plug?

A few caveats, people get sick, they have kids, they have other friends, jobs, and responsibilities and for that I do make allowances until it becomes clear that the person I am trying to be friends with doesn’t really care about me at all. This is the time when you just have to say enough is enough and pull the plug. The catalyst for me making this decision was a few weeks ago, I went to The Smart Conference in Dallas and was privileged to hear Dr. Henry Cloud (author of the book , “Necessary Endings” who gave a really excellent speech about the necessary pruning we must do in our lives. In a nutshell, he talks about getting rid of the relationships or aspects of our lives that are “dead or dying” — which got me thinking, how (one minute microcosm of his ideas here)

So a few words about this, there are relationships that grow you and change you and support you and there are then people who just make you feel bad about yourself or can ONLY talk about themselves and spending time with them is always a version of  The __________ Show — (you know what I mean) and those are the ones I am proposing you prune. Life is too short, we all have lots of things we are doing so I tell you now, the next time you set up plans to spend time with someone think about what you get out of that friendship. This is not about “what have you done for me lately?” this is about what does “this friendship” do for me?

Think about it!

It’s not hard after it’s done- she says… 10 MILES LATER!!!

Dear Readers,

On Sunday, I ran a 10 mile race. It was harder than I thought and easier than I thought. It should be noted that like so many other things in life this is a baby step of many to get me to that marathon status which is down the road for me.

First of all, I should clarify something, up till Sunday, I had only done 5K’s but after Sunday, I have now done a 15K!!!!!!

a brief recap

Vern’s No Frills- January 18, 2014

Biggest Loser- March 29, 2014

Color Run- May 24, 2014

Casa 5K-September 21, 2014

Holiday 5K Zilker- December 6, 2014

Austin 1020- 10 Mile Run Walk– March 29, 2015

That is 6 different events spanned over several months.. but its worth mentioning that each time I ran (this weekend being no exception) it was different– Vern’s No Frills was crazy cold and and we walked more than we ran but, baby steps. The Biggest Loser was great weather and the run went really well, my partner Susie said she had NEVER seen me run that fast. The Color Run was a LOT of walking.. I just wasn’t in shape for that one.. It was tagged as a FUN run and that was more about me getting out of my comfort zone (see I hate being messy) than a run… CASA was crazy hot and the worst race conditions.. but it was my husband’s first run and super fun to have him there along with Jessica and Adam, Susie, Keely, Michael and CJ.. our team also raised a lot of money for CASA so it was lucrative in other ways. Holiday 5K was actually a 3K but I kept going to make it a full 5K, wasn’t ready for that one either and it was a pretty rough “trail run” and at night.. won’t be doing that again.

So, 10 miles — what can I say about that.. First, I found myself thinking pretty nasty thoughts about the runners ahead of me when I was on mile 4 and they were on mile 8…. ( I think its pretty natural to hate the runner ahead of you sorry but its true… ) Second, the people behind me, I felt pretty good I was ahead of them but was working on keeping myself motiviated.  Flashback to before the race, you know how when a big event is looming and you go back and forth between looking forward to it and dreading it/ getting nervous about it? What do you do about that?

I employed several devices. I asked for support from all my “fans” on facebook and twitter and asked some people for some support and motivational messages. It is HARD for me to ask for help but I really needed it. The response was overwhelming. I had people post to support me that I don’t even know that well and tell me how much what I was doing was inspiring them. It really helped drive home the fact that one person really does make a difference. I also drank water and made the decision that while it would be slow (turtle trudging through mud) I would do it and finish. It wasn’t an option to stop and it wasn’t an option to quit.I also had Susie and Jessica who kept encouraging me through the weeks before the race that I could and would in fact do it.

As I say so often, because it is so true, It is allllllll about the baby steps-

I compare it to our debt-free journey. We have been doing lots of things to get debt-free but there are no short-cuts and slow, plodding, step by baby step, dollar by dollar, mile by mile we WILL get there. At one point during the race, I thought to myself it is funny, when you are in it, it doesn’t seem that hard, but before it you build up all this anticipation about how hard it is GOING to be. Mental note to self- Think less, do more. The person who got me through it when the going got hardest was Jessica, she had a running commentary about how I was getting my money’s worth by taking it slowly and not “racing” to the finish. She joined me at mile 4.2 to keep me going, support me and NOT LET ME QUIT. She told me she was proud of me throughout and it really helped to move me through it. At the last mile, (she went above and beyond by pretending to be a cheetah coming to “get” gazelle me (with sound effects) which helped me put some extra bounce in my final steps. As they say, you want to run to the finish, not walk.

JMac finishes 10 miles!
JMac finishes 10 miles!

I told her I wanted to finish by myself and I did. It FELT INCREDIBLE to take that last stride and finish. I feel extremely accomplished but its important to note, I did not do this alone. I had support and that made all the difference.

Think about it……… and go support someone’s goal today. And if you are pursuing a goal, ASK for help! Sometimes that one encouraging word, phone call, or note can make the difference.