Category “meaning & passion”

You’re More Valuable Than You Think

“Your value doesn’t decrease based on someone’s inability to see your worth.” ~Unknown

On a summer night in Hicksville, Long Island, I swung the bat and drove a double down the left-field line. I broke up the pitcher’s no-hitter, and he was one of the best pitchers in the league. I felt completely at home. I was myself.

On another summer night in Vergennes, Vermont, I stumbled back to the fence tracking down a fly ball. I speared at it with my glove, then watched it bounce off of my hand and go over the fence for a grand-slam home …

How to Stop Pushing and Stressing About Your Goals

You must learn to let go. Release the stress. You were never in control anyway.” ~Steve Maraboli

I’ve encountered many people who live by the belief that in order to be successful, one must “go out and make things happen.” I used to feel the same until I realized that we don’t actually have control over most aspects of our lives.

We can attempt to make things happen, but doing so doesn’t guarantee anything—it only develops yearning, which leads to suffering.

Take my recent job search, for example. I spent nine months looking for a job. I applied …

10 Ways to Seize the Day and Achieve Greater Work-Life Balance

“Seize the day, trusting little in the future.” ~Horace

Don’t you hate it when you think of the perfect comeback to someone’s comment way too late? One that really sticks out for me happened a couple years ago.

I was midway through a cross-Canada speaking tour, sharing about my journey with cancer and what it taught me about work-life balance and embracing life’s simple pleasures.

After giving my talk to a Rotary Club in Alberta, one of the audience members approached me.

“You know what balance is?” he gruffly demanded, jabbing a finger at me. “Working hard the first half …

Adventures for Your Soul Book Giveaway: Live the Life of Your Dreams

UPDATE: The winners for this giveaway are:

  • Sarah Jane Vallente
  • Chandra Milliron

“Just like the characters of a movie, you are a character in the show called ‘Life.’ Are you in a starring role? Or are you a supporting actor?” ~Shannon Kaiser

Do you ever feel like could be doing more with your life? Like you’re holding yourself back in fear and not reaching your true potential? Maybe you don’t even know what you want; you just know what you don’t want, and yet you can’t seem to escape it.

I’ve been there quite a few times myself, and I’ve …

Discover Your Inner Confidence Through Skills You Already Love

“I think a lot of people mistake my confidence on stage for cockiness in real life, and that’s actually farthest from the truth. When I’m on stage, I’m that confident and that cocky because I have a microphone in my hand, and there’s a few thousand people staring at me. And I know they’re there to laugh.” ~Russell Peters

When I was ten, I opened the black, roughly textured box with the metal clasps, pulling out my first saxophone.

The alto sax would come to represent my inner confidence. My true self. The person who paints with sound the complex …

A Simple Way to Light Up Your Life with Meaning, Love, and Joy

“Love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which man can aspire.” ~Viktor Frankl

Picture this: it was 3am but I couldn’t fall asleep. I had little to complain about, except a feeling that life seemed to be passing me by.

My father had died abruptly some years earlier, my mother had come through a major operation, our children were growing increasingly independent, and our marriage was strong.

Work was admittedly a bit stressful, and colleagues were less helpful than they might have been. But I ate a healthy diet, exercised, maintained a reasonable work-life balance, and did …

Our Proudest Accomplishments Are Often the Quiet Ones

“…I kept trying to run away. And I almost did. But it seems that reality compels you to live properly when you live in the real world.” ~Kenzaburō Ōe, A Personal Matter

Recently I listened to an interview with author Kenzaburō Ōe, who won the 1994 Nobel Prize for literature. Ōe, who is now eighty-one, is a major figure in Japanese contemporary literature as well as playing an active role in the Pacifist and anti-nuclear movements.

When asked what accomplishment he was most proud of over his long and distinguished career, he answered, without hesitation, that for the past forty …

How to Prioritize, Pursue Goals, and Focus When You Have Many Interests

“A man who limits his interests, limits his life.” ~Vincent Price

I can’t stay still.

As a kid, I ran around, misbehaving, climbing everywhere—I was a nightmare for my parents, teachers, and anyone who had to take care of me. One year, my behavior assessment report at school stated: “Leaves a lot to be desired.”

Through my teenage years, I suddenly quieted down. But my mind didn’t go silent; it still boils inside.

I crave stimuli. Any time I have a couple of minutes on my own, while waiting in the car or in a queue, for example, I take …

Forget “Should” and Live the Life You Want to Live

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

There was a time when I “had it all.”

I was in my tenth year of teaching in a small, rural school. I lived with my husband and daughter in a four-bedroom house in a subdivision in the woods. Life was routine, predictable, and secure. We made plans to fix up the house and figured that I would likely work in my job until retirement.

However, two things got in the way of those plans.

First, I felt …

Microadventures: Get Away and Have Fun Without Traveling Far

“One way to get the most out of life is to look upon it as an adventure.” ~William Feather

I live for exploring the world, trying new things, and meeting passionate people. As a filmmaker I’m very fortunate to be able to do all these things from time to time, and I just love it!

However, this is only a small part of my work. I also often find myself stuck in front of a computer for weeks at a time editing—no nature, no people, no exploring. Just me and a computer.

It’s easy to get bogged down by all

Why Hard Work Might Not Pay Off (and What Will)

“Man is only truly great when he acts from his passions.” ~Benjamin Disraeli

At a young age I was told, “Without hard work nothing grows but weeds.”

I was also told, “With hard work it was possible to achieve the American Dream.”

I was not sure what the American Dream was, but I did what everyone around me seemed to be doing. Working hard. I did well in school, helped my mother at home and my father at his place of business.

The world looked incredible to me growing up, and I was so passionate about waking up every

Show Up for Yourself and Believe in Your Dream

“As you start to walk on the way, the way appears.” ~Rumi

My early life was challenging, to say the least. I grew up in a difficult home situation, which I hoped to escape through an early marriage. That marriage produced four beautiful children by the time I was twenty-one years old.

We were very poor and I hoped to get us out of poverty, but I wasn’t sure it was possible.

I’d been poor all my life. I didn’t really know what it was like to have abundance. I thought success was for “other people.” My only education was …

3 Things That Can Help You Bounce Back from Failure

“If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn’t sit for a month.” ~Theodore Roosevelt

The year was 2011 and I had been working as customer relations officer in a private healthcare firm for three years. It was as boring as it sounds, and I had been planning my escape toward self-employment for around a year by working in the evenings as a personal trainer.

I imagined that on the final day I’d exit the office for the last time in a blaze of happiness and jubilation, thrilled that I’d finally taken …

Should You Sacrifice Financial Stability to Pursue Your Dream?

If a person gets his attitude towards money straight, then it will help strengthen out almost every other area in his life. ~Billy Graham

To pursue financial security or your dream …

You’re in conflict, right?

I know because I’ve been there myself.

People often tell us that money isn’t everything, so we assume we can sacrifice money to pursue our dreams. Somehow it will work out. At least that’s what I thought.

What do you think about money? Is it everything or not?

I quit my job when I got married. My husband was a pastor …

It’s Not All About Money: 5 Ways to Redefine Success

“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.” ~Maya Angelou

When I was thirty I was earning double the salary I am today. I was also stressed, depressed, sick, tired, and hated my job.

Most media portals want us to believe that in order to be successful we must own a large property, have vacations in exotic destinations, drive a flashy car, and be designer-dressed from head to toe. And that’s just for starters.

We are bombarded with these falsehoods from an early age and we set out on a mission to acquire the …

How to Turn Your Fear into Excitement So You Can Pursue Your Dreams

“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance.” ~John Lennon

When it comes to facing fear and moving past it in order to see my dreams realized, I was always advised to power through it. Do the thing that scares you, no matter how much it makes your heart pound. Take that step that makes your stomach knot up in tight balls. Do it and power through, or else miss out …

Stop Waiting for Permission to Live the Life You Want to Live

“One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it’s worth watching.” ~Unknown

I know you.

You’re smart. You’re driven. You’re a “good girl/boy.” You found out a long time ago that life goes more smoothly for people who follow the rules, so you learned the rulebook inside out.

People expected things from you and you made it your job to live up to those expectations—and probably beat yourself up inside when you fell short.

But now you’re stuck, the way anyone who has spent their life making other people happier than they make themselves gets stuck.…

10 Deathbed Regrets You Can Avoid by Making Changes Now

“While I thought that I was learning how to live, I have been learning how to die.” ~Leonardo Da Vinci

It’s terrifying, isn’t it?

There you are—days, hours, maybe minutes remain in your life. You lie there helpless, searching for the strength to say your last goodbyes.

You look back on your life. All the things you wish you’d done differently.

As you continue to reminisce an overwhelming emotion comes rushing in, an emotion many are familiar with.


You set the standards high for yourself. But now that it’s all said and done, more was always said than …

5 Ways to Create a Life You Love Without Making a Major Change

“Some people thrive on dramatic change. Some people prefer the slow and steady route. Do what’s right for you.” ~Julie Morgenstern

Admit it.

You feel like something’s missing from your life.

You see people who have transformed their lives, given up their day jobs, and moved to exotic lands.

People who have created a new life and found whatever was missing from their previous humdrum existences.

But you don’t hate your life. You’re okay with a little humdrum. You like your responsibilities—your partner, kids, house, or job. The thought of the life you have stretching out in front of you …

The Truth About Failure: How Hitting Hurdles Makes You Successful

“There are no failures. Just experiences and your reactions to them.” ~Tom Krause

I had spent years training for this race. This was the big one. If I won and made the qualifying time, I would go on to compete in the Canadian National Track and Field Championships.

I was burning to win. Only the winner of this race would qualify. Second place wouldn’t cut it.

Competing at the national level could lead to all kinds of opportunities: sponsorship, athletic scholarships, and a career in athletics.

My favorite form of self-torture was the 110-meter hurdles. I lived and breathed sprinting …