Welcome to the Unlimited Newsletter...
Happy Father's Day to all of you great Dads out there! This Father's Day carries a bit of a void for me since it is the first one without my Dad.
A few weeks ago, we buried my Dad as it poured rain throughout the ceremony. The weather seemed to appropriately match our feelings for the day. I felt a gripping sadness in my stomach as I walked away from my Dad's body in the plot, knowing the next time I return to this place, his body would be buried under forever. How could this man, such a great Dad, be gone from this world? How can this really be over?
Life really is a precious gift. I have witnessed this with the birth of my two children as well as when I experienced a brain injury almost three years ago, and as my Dad fought so bravely against cancer. The little worries most of us experience can be wiped away in a heartbeat when we are faced with the reality of our mortality.
I spent some time reflecting on what I wanted to write about this month that would honour my Father, perhaps as my last Father's Day gift to him, while at the same time bringing something meaningful forth for my clients, readers and friends to help you in your own lives and careers.
I can think of nothing as fitting to share with you today than words written by my Dad.
Enjoy the ride!
CEO, Potential Unlimited
Life Lessons From My Dad
One year ago, shortly after my Dad was diagnosed with cancer, I asked him to write a blog for me to share with you. This was his first and last blog. Sometimes, I think there is immense value in going back and reading something one more time. And I know many of you have signed up for the newsletter since this blog originally was posted. I would like to share my Dad's words with you about his life lessons as he courageously moved towards death, letting go and a graceful acceptance of what is. If you read anything today, make it this! Read more
What Speed Do You Operate On?
Recently, my husband and I made a trip to the local garden centre. We sought out the tree and plant guru there, Kevin. This garden expert started out showing us a selection of six possible trees to pick from. As soon as he finished his explanation on each tree, I said, "we'll take this one and that one." Kevin looked surprised and asked if I was sure I didn't want to think about each of the options more. I looked at my husband, who really didn't 't care about what trees we picked, and I responded, "No, thanks." Then we proceeded to the cash register to pay for the trees when I saw some annuals just outside the far door. I actually proceeded to run through the garden centre to grab these flower as I didn't want to hold up Kevin and my husband, Jeff, (or more likely myself!).
Later, Jeff told me that Kevin had said to him when I went dashing through the garden centre, "I think she only has one speed!" And let me tell you, I don't think the speed he was referring to was mindful. When I heard this, my ego took over. At first, I felt a sense of pride for acting so quickly and decisively, packing it all in a short amount of time. And then my ego swung to the other end of the spectrum as I felt crestfallen that all of this work I have been doing over the past few years around mindfulness seemed to disappear and I was back to my 'old self,' moving at a super charged speed through this world. I watched the scene of me running through the garden centre like a video in my mind.
Then I stopped and thought about what I tell my clients, mindfulness is a practice. It is not something I will ever do perfectly, but perhaps the imperfections of it make it perfect for me in each moment. And the fact I noticed was important. I share this with you because I want you to know that it is okay to fail. Failure is part of the journey. And yes, even I, the preacher and teacher of mindfulness, sometimes go flying through my day on autopilot until the awareness comes in. I was thankful to Kevin as he served as a messenger to me that I was starting to lose my way in that moment of how I want to live and be. I was cramming in too much and unnecessarily driving up my adrenaline and cortisol levels. When I was able to stop and see that, I could go back to choose moving and thinking
with more focus and purpose. Life is a journey, not a destination.
Learn 4 Simple Ways To Add Mindfulness to Your Day!Read more
Today's Tip: If you feel your life is going off-path, you can always bring it back. Begin to make more time for yourself in silence. Stop the busyness. Breath deeply. Exercise more. Eat better. Connect with loved ones, and follow your gut. There is always a way home!
Carey-Ann Oestreicher (pronounced O-striker), Chief Engagement Officer for Potential Unlimited, works with individuals and companies to help them reach their full potential.
Recipient of Top 40 Under Forty Award and Nominated as one of Canada's Most Powerful 100 Women, Carey-Ann has held a variety of senior positions including vice-president level and she has worked in industries such as: financial services, automotive and transportation, publishing, cosmetics and fashion.
Carey-Ann's media appearances include CTV's Canada AM, Global TV's Survivor series, CBC NewsWorld, TSN. She has also been quoted in numerous publications such as The Globe and Mail, Chatelaine and Canadian Business magazines.