I Laughed So Hard, I Learned??
I honestly can’t remember the last time I laughed so hard or learned so much.
Wait. Laughing and learning at the same time? Can it be? After all, I distinctly recall getting into trouble for assuming I could combine the two. Even my kindergarten teacher wrote on my report card that although I was a good student I was inclined to be too a bit too social.
While today there is a better understanding and acceptance that children learn through their play, we typically don’t equate fun and playfulness with…
Posted on 05-28-16
7 Reasons Why I Don’t Want a Job
I don’t want a job.
Don’t get me wrong, I love to work. It could be that my Ukrainian work ethic is genetic. Or, it might just be that I am defined by my work and want to make a difference. Regardless, I work hard and put in far more hours than most people would consider typical or healthy.
Despite all that, I’ve recently concluded I’m going to have to stick to being self-employed because I don’t want any of the jobs I’m seeing. Of course, it is tempting to think…
Posted on 03-01-16
Me? Dinner with the Governor General??
Yes siree I had dinner with the Governor General at 1 Sussex Drive.
I know. Hard to believe. My mother almost fell off her chair when I told her.
To be accurate it wasn’t just me. I mean there were others as well. In fact all of the three finalists for the Arctic Inspiration Prize were invited as well as those on the selection committee, donors and sponsors..
His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada was absolutely delightful, the food was out of this world, and the…
Posted on 02-01-16
Would You Like a Buggy Today Ma’am?
I love my life, I really do. But this past year, despite being blessed with a dear and loving family, fabulous friends, and work that truly makes me happy, I’ve joined the ranks of the estimated 28.4 percent of Canadian workers who reported high work-related stress in 2015.
Despite being the kind of person who loves variety and change, I am beginning to covet routine and jobs that have a clear beginning and end. Heck I’m even starting to think a job as a Walmart greeter is attractive. I think I could handle smiling and saying, “Good afternoon ma’am,…
Posted on 01-02-16
What if Kermit Got it Wrong?
What if Kermit got it wrong?
Maybe it is easy being green? Or at least easier than we thought?
Is it possible that applying sustainability strategies can actually improve the bottom line of a company?
Bob Willard, owner of the Sustainability Advantage in Whitby, Ontario answers with a resounding, “Yes”. In fact, he says, “Addressing the environmental footprint of a company can improve their bottom line by 51 to 51%”.
Change is hard. It really is. Most people see it as something they don’t want because it means leaving what they know and stepping into something more likely to be messy and unclear. It may even be that change is hard because we overestimate the value of staying the same, and underestimate the value of what could be gained.
However, In my work, which generally involves supporting change in organizations and communities, we’ve also learned there is a small minority of people for whom change isn’t as hard. Instead they view change as moving forward, learning, growing, and ideally, innovative…
Posted on 11-29-15
Tall, Dark and Charismatic
As he put it, he wanted to meet and develop a relationship. It definitely wasn’t personal, it was simply because in the not-to-distant future, he knew his employer would be in need of the community development training offered by my company.
Our connection over coffee stretched to over an hour and resulted in a deep, rich, and meaningful conversation about community building and its importance.
I was definitely a “Miss Cranky Pants” this week.
In addition to being cranky, I suffered from monkey mind, my body hurt, and I was far more tired than usual. In short, I simply wasn’t firing on all jets.
While there’s no doubt it was due in part to having been on the road for two weeks, I also realized that not exercising regularly was a major factor. Whereas I was still walking as much as I could, I had missed the thrice weekly gym workouts that have become an essential…
Posted on 10-29-15
How I was Reminded About Gratitude
I am grateful for the many good things that are part of my life. And, while I do my best to reflect an attitude of gratitude, I recently heard a story that truly put everything into perspective.
The story came a few weeks ago from a neurosurgeon I only knew as the result of a breakfast conversation at a B & B where we were both staying.
I’m losing patience and respect for the “Old Boys” among us.
While I’ll be the first to admit they bring extensive experience and often great wisdom, there is a disconcerting sameness in their sense of entitlement, and an often masked, yet unmistakable, arrogance.
Yes without a doubt there are exceptions. If you are an Old Boy, you might even think you are different. But trust me, the odds are you aren’t. In fact, you might even be one of the most most dangerous because you are smart enough to…
Posted on 09-25-15
The Critical Hours
I was reminded this week about an incident with one of our sons that took place when he was about thirteen.
With judgment likely impaired by the bouncing hormones of adolescence, he and a friend found and decided to use a pellet gun to shoot at a gallery of glass canning jars. That in itself wasn’t a brilliant idea but it was compounded by the fact that they decided to do it in the rather confined space of our basement.
In the late 1990’s I got involved in a Canada-wide movement that collected evidence and research to document the benefits or outcomes delivered by recreation and parks.
Little did any of us know the field was ahead of its time in putting into place a precursor to what is now referred to as big data analytics. Let me explain.
The reality is that we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data every day. What makes it… More Posted on 07-27-15
When Economy Trumps Quality of Life We Pay a Price
Community building is in my heart and likely in my DNA.
While my career path first took me into the corporate world, I was attracted to the field of recreation because of its focus on outcomes—helping people grow and be healthy, building strong families and communities, working with those who were disadvantaged, protecting the environment, and adding to the quality of life in our communities.
I subsequently worked in a variety of settings including a Boys and Girls Club, municipal recreation, Niagara College, then with the Alberta Recreation and Parks Association (ARPA), and now with my own social enterprise…
Posted on 07-26-15
Small Town Advantage
After living in Edmonton for the past eight years (population 877,926), we recently moved back to Welland, Ontario (population 50,631).
In Edmonton I could go anywhere and the odds are I would never run into a single person I knew. In Welland, that’s not the case because, as in other small towns across the country, people know each other. That’s one of the many things I missed.
I must say it’s disconcerting to walk into stores and see clothes that look so much like those I wore in my younger years. Fortunately most of them are pretty unattractive and are clothes I would never wear again even if I could.
On the other hand, they bring back memories of an era and a generation that staged protests and raised their voices in an endeavor to make the world a better place.
I like that I often see that same desire in today’s youth.