Undertaking a Challenge That Seems Out of Your Realm of Capabilities

Guest Post by Rosalynn Frederick, Founder, Youth Travel Fund

Rise up nimbly and go on your strange journey to the ocean of meanings.

The stream knows it cannot stay on the mountain.

Leave and don’t look away from the sun as you go, in whose light you are sometimes crescent,

sometimes full. – Rumi

A few weeks ago, I returned from a 5-month journey of a lifetime. On March 23, 2013 at 10am, I stood with my feet in the Pacific Ocean in Grover Beach, CA. A few minutes later I took the first steps of a journey that would carry me across 16 states and 3,000 miles … A journey that would show me the amazing beauty of the nature and geography of the United States and the people that live there … a journey that would take me beyond the outer limits of my comfort zone emotionally as well as physically … a journey that I hoped would start a new chapter in my life.

Rosalynn1I decided to run across the country for many reasons. One reason was that I felt a longing for a change in my life. The career of Spanish teacher that I had embarked upon 7 years earlier had led me to a place where my life felt unfulfilled and heavy. There were so many things I enjoyed about being a Spanish teacher – working with kids, speaking Spanish, the economic security it provided, the vacation time, the creativity of lesson planning – but I no longer felt inspired.

Being a teacher took over my entire life. I never felt like I was prepared enough or had enough time to prepare. The planning and grading overshadowed everything I did and weighed heavily on me. My vacations were not relaxing because I was constantly stressed about the work for school that was undone. I felt burnt out. Although I respect and feel so passionate about this career path, I don’t know if it’s for me. I never quite figured it out … if that’s even possible. But one thing I did know: the life I was leading didn’t make sense to me. I needed a change.

Arizona canyonsI think the seed for this journey, the USA Run for Youth Travel, was planted when I participated in my first travel experience as a teenager, an independent individual- a trip to France and Spain. It was during this trip that I realized that the world outside Columbia County, outside NY state, outside the United States, was within my reach!

I still remember the name of the hotel where we stayed in Paris. I remember the hotel room. I remember head-banging to Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody with everyone on the tour bus. I remember buying a black leather motorcycle jacket with my friend Mindy in the Plaza Mayor, in Spain. I remember seeing the Mona Lisa in the Louvre. I have so many vivid memories from this 10-day trip, it’s amazing.

In college I traveled to Spain, again. This time living there for 4 months. After college, I decided to join the Peace Corps and spent 2 ½ years doing service work in Niger, West Africa. Living and working with the people there was an experience that changed my life. It gave me a valuable new perspective of life.

In Niger, I saw life stripped down to basics. No electricity, no running water. I saw people living on the edge of a desert balancing a thin line between life and death on a daily basis, year after year. I saw people hungry and thirsty. But amidst all of this I saw something much deeper. I saw that despite our differences in culture, appearance, and lifestyle, we had so many things in common as human beings. I went there thinking that I was going to meet people that were so different than me in every way and I left realizing that we are all human beings, sharing the same, basic human characteristics and needs. “People are People,” as the Depeche Mode song goes.

California Chico and Timo George P. DoverAs I continued to travel (I’ve now visited a total of 14 countries), I began to appreciate the world we live in more and more for its diversity and beauty – in people and landscape. And being very shy when I was a child, travel gave me a sense of confidence in myself. I sensed that I could navigate my way through new situations, face challenges, problem solve, and relate to people that at first seemed foreign to me, instead of being intimidated or scared.

Travel had a deep impact on me as an individual. I truly believe that the experiences I had traveling around the world, showed me that I was capable of undertaking a challenge that at first seemed out of my realm of capabilities.

The idea to run across the USA came to me when a school trip to Costa Rica that I had been planning had to be cancelled. Being so passionate about travel myself, I wanted to ensure that more young people had the opportunity to travel in high school. When I realized that the cost of travel was out of reach for so many students, I wanted to do something that would help young people be able to afford the trips I knew they would benefit so much from.

Arizona me runningI decided to develop the Youth Travel Fund and run across the country to promote it and raise money for it. I wanted to do something new with my life that involved helping young people travel.

One of my favorite quotes, by Howard Thurman, an author, educator, and civil rights leader, says:

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and then go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

What this new path would allow me to do was exciting. It brought together so many things that made me come alive. Traveling is one of my biggest passions in life. Working with young people to give them opportunities I have been fortunate enough to have- another. And I felt called to do it through running, yet another one of my passions.

All of a sudden, I felt inspired by the possibilities that opened up before me and I wanted to be an example to others, to show as many people as possible that we are capable of shaping our lives and doing the things that we love. And that if this means stretching ourselves and questioning our limitations, facing doubts and fears, and taking risks, if it’s important enough to us, we are capable.

CIMG2176So, on that fateful day in March, after planning and preparing for 8 months, I embarked on my “strange journey to the ocean of meanings.”

I didn’t know what to expect from this journey or how to fully prepare for it. I will say that once I started planning for it, a path began to form and I just kept walking down it. What I mean by this is that there was a kind of momentum that kept moving me forward. Not to say that everything was easy or smooth. But I knew I was moving in the right direction. I felt a sense of purpose.  I also knew it was going to be an experiment the entire time, with uncertainty and doubts along the way. But it didn’t scare me away. I was determined to make it happen, despite my fears.

I have come to see the journey in 3 parts – one for each thousand miles that I covered. The first thousand miles took me through the southwest, CA, AZ, and NM. This was the adventurous part.

New Mexico signDuring this time I explored the desert and woods, I forged trails where there weren’t any, I came face to face with cows in their own pastures, I scaled canyons and experienced the culture of the Navajo Nation and other native communities. At times I felt like I was in a different country or even on a different planet. On the open road, surrounded my miles and miles of sky and desert, I felt free! On the Navajo nation I viewed canyon land that seemed to stretch out for thousands of miles. I seemed as if no humans had ever left their mark on it. It was breathtaking!

The second thousand miles took me through the Midwest, OK, KS, and MO. First of all, I never knew KS was such a big state. In fact, I didn’t know much about any of these states. If the first section was an adventure, this section was like a job. I was more accustomed to life on the road and, at this point, I was no longer running on trails in the woods. I was running on highways and paved roads. And instead of canyons and cow pastures, there was traffic and civilization!

CIMG1948And it was during this time that I was introduced to the worst running conditions I have ever experienced: High heat and humidity. It was through KS and MO that I ran almost all of my highest mileage days, almost 2 weeks of 30+ mileage days … in absolute misery. I was drinking upwards of 13 liters of water a day during this weather and still feeling depleted. I was out on the hot pavement for 8-11 hours a day, sweating nonstop under the weight of the hot humid air. It felt at times that my head was in a pot of boiling water or like I was running through hot soup. During these days it was all about the mileage. I was serious and focused and determined. I felt it was my job. But I cried many mornings before hitting the road in anticipation of the day ahead. These days were some of the toughest days of my life.

What kept me moving forward during this time were 3 things: a) my mission to promote and raise money for the Youth Travel Fund, b) inspiring others to not give up on their dreams and goals, and c) the people who had contributed to the trip and who were supporting me and believing in me.

Missouri SignAt times when I thought I couldn’t go any further, I would just picture these faces, bring to mind their enthusiasm about my endeavor, and remember words they had spoken to me. I didn’t want to let them down. They had believed in me and that made me believe in myself. A wonderful community of people across the country made this journey possible and made it possible for me to accomplish my goals. I COULDN’T have done it without them!

The third thousand miles is difficult to describe, but I think this is where the true mental aspect of the endeavor came into play. My body was tired, having sustained shin, foot, and hip injuries- and my shins and hips still weren’t fully recovered. Injuries caused a mental stress that I found difficult to deal with. I didn’t know if I should push through the injuries or if I would be causing myself permanent damage if I did so. Running through pain made it difficult to enjoy what was going on around me. But I didn’t want to give up.

At this point, I felt like I had come too far to give up. It was all about my mentality at this point because my body would have quit at mile 2,000. But my mental state was also weak. I was deep in a mental and emotional state of uncertainty. I doubted myself, I questioned who I was, I questioned my motivations, my health, my future, my past…

By this point in the journey I had had the pleasure to get to know a handful of other “crossers”, people who had completed, or were in the process of completing, either walks, runs, or bikes across the country. Talking to these people on a regular basis was invaluable. They had an important perspective to share with me. They were going through what I was going through, or had been through it, and SURVIVED! They helped me to stay focused and positive. Their spirit and accomplishment inspired me.

The last 400 miles was all about family and friends. They came to support me at a critical time. Often at the end of a long journey, it’s that last little part that seems to be the most painful. It drags on because you are so close, you can almost taste it, but you still have miles to go. I got through this last part by having friends and family at my side. They distracted me and provided the support that allowed me to truly enjoy the last few weeks of the run, despite the state my body and mind were in.

And now I’m HOME! I’ve imagined being home so many times over the last 5 months. It’s almost surreal to actually be living it. I know it will take a long time for me to process the entirety of the experience I just went through, but at this point, it almost seems like a dream. Sitting here today in my living room, I, myself, can’t believe that I was running across the desert landscape of New Mexico 3 months ago. It’s a strange feeling.

One thing I am certain about though is how fortunate I feel to have had the opportunity to experience this journey. Despite all the hardships and difficult times, it’s an experience that I will no doubt cherish as one of the most amazing ones of my life.  I am honored and privileged to have had the opportunity to travel across our beautiful country on foot and to encounter so many wonderful, kind, and generous people along the way.

Oklahoma DinnerPeople often ask me what the best part of the journey has been for me. That’s it: the people along the way. People, often complete strangers, who took me and my support driver in, fed us, offered us beds to sleep in, a shower, and a place to do laundry. Hotel and restaurant owners and managers who donated free rooms and meals because they believe in what we were doing, friends, family members and acquaintances who cared enough to follow the journey on Facebook and donate their hard earned money to the cause.

We often hear more about the bad things people do instead of the good things and the good people. I’m here to say, our country has a beautiful spirit of generosity and goodwill that we should celebrate. Never once did I feel threatened, but there were countless times that people stopped on the side of the road to offer me food, drinks, a ride, and money for the Youth Travel Fund. I’m proud and honored to say that because of the USA Run for Youth Travel and the attention it brought to the cause, I have raised over $6,000 for the Youth Travel Fund- money that will go towards helping young people realize their dreams of traveling.

This leads me to what I think the biggest take away from this whole experience was, which, again, is about the human experience. We humans live on this beautiful and amazing world together. We share this space and time. The world is even more beautiful and amazing when we work together with the people around us and celebrate our ability to help and support one another. I experienced this first hand as I traversed the USA.

I won’t say that this type of relationship with one another is always easy. As human beings we have egos, we experience stress and fear and vulnerability and sadness, we have days when we feel strong enough to be our best selves, and days when all we feel is negativity. I have experienced all of this in an intense way during this journey. But in the end, what I have come to realize is how much we can all benefit one another and to never settle for becoming stagnant in the negativity that isolates and alienates us.

I realized during the past 5 months how important it is to seek out inspiration from others, to seek out support, to seek out a community that will help you realize your goals and be your best self. I did this all along the way, including before I left for the journey. One specific thing I did was to take part in Jenny’s Live Your Dream Challenge. I sought out and was provided with the support I needed during this experience.

Part of my internal journey during the past 5 months dealt with a personal struggle with my own demons – with often not feeling like my best self, yet being surrounded by people whose kindness was so beautiful it often brought me to tears. This is life – the good and the bad, the ups and the downs. So my question now is: Why not help one another whenever we can?  Let’s acknowledge that life isn’t easy.

My experience running 3,000 miles in 5 months made my struggles even more intense because of the circumstances, but life is like this. Life is like running across the country.

We all struggle, we all need support, and we all have something to offer to make each others’ lives meaningful and joyful. It’s my goal to take the kindness and generosity I was extended throughout this journey and share it with others as a way to repay what was given to me, to live a life that makes me come ALIVE over and over again, and to provide support and encouragement for others to do the same.

Rosalynn Frederick was a Spanish teacher for the past 7 years, until she decided to start the Youth Travel Fund and run across the United States. She was born in Pennsylvania, but lived the first 5 years of her life in Belize, Central America. When she was around five years old her family moved back the US and she started school in Bronx, NY. Most recently, she taught at the high school she graduated from in Columbia County, NY.

Rosalynn attended Ithaca College. In 2000, she joined the Peace Corps and went to Niger, West Africa for two-and-a-half years. “My experience in Niger is difficult to put into only a few words,” she says. “It was amazing and I am so grateful for it.” She attended the University of Oregon in Eugene for 2 years where she got her Master’s in Educational Leadership. “Eugene, OR was a beautiful and enjoyable place to live and running is a part of the culture there.”

She ran her first marathon during the time she lived in Eugene: The 2005 Big Sur marathon. “What an amazing first! Running along Route 1 on the California Coast line was breath taking…and so were the hills, literally!”

In January 2013, Rosalynn completed her first ultramarathon, the Norrie Point 50k, in under 5 hours.

Rosalynn currently lives in Great Barrington, MA where she is working as a Landscape Gardener and Waitress while she develops the Youth Travel Fund program. 

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Your Thoughts Become Things: Shift the Energy of Fear through Fire

I walked on fire a few months ago. Seriously. Walked. On. Fire.

Why would I do such a thing?
Aren’t my feet going to get burned?
Am I crazy?
I’m scared.
Whaaaaattttt?

These are just some of the thoughts that went through my head as I contemplated this mentally and physically challenging experience.

Then I read the website of our firewalking leader Stephanie Foy. In it, she so eloquently states:

“Firewalking teaches a profound lesson about the power of the mind, and the effect that our thoughts and beliefs have on our experience of reality. It is a practical way of confirming our instincts and validating our intuition. Firewalking provides an unforgettable visual image to accompany our thoughts and beliefs. It shows us the vastness of human potential. And most importantly, it helps us to shift the energy of fear.

We’ve all been taught that fire burns. When you have the experience of walking on fire without being burned, you re-evaluate other things you’ve been taught. If fire doesn’t burn, maybe germs don’t cause colds. Maybe getting old doesn’t mean getting slow, stiff, or weak. Maybe getting sick doesn’t mean having to die. Maybe we are capable of much more than we originally believed.

When we walk on fire without burning, many other possibilities open up for us. Physical and emotional barriers can fall away. When we examine the beliefs that create undesirable patterns, we are able to replace these beliefs and change our lives. As we practice the art of creating our own reality, we quickly evolve to new states of harmony.”

I was sold. Firewalking has been used in cultures around the world for thousands of years. There was something spectacular about it … for sure.

I showed up the night of our firewalk, curious, excited, scared and open.

Through Stephanie’s expert guidance, we confronted our fears, deconstructed labels that have kept us trapped for way, way too long, and connected with our own inner fire.

When it came time to walk over the fire (only if we wanted to), a courageous guy walked first and shared how it felt with the rest of the group.

Feels like walking on stars,” he said.

I wanted to feel that, too!

So over I went …

Once (so I knew I could do it).

Twice (so I knew it wasn’t a fluke).

Three times (to remind myself that I’m supposed to be here [I actually said this out loud as I walked] … and so are YOU!).

And a fourth time (with a fellow adventurer named Jenny … to celebrate our lives as Jennys).

No burns whatsoever … just “fire medicine” rising through my body, helping to heal old wounds and scars that have been holding me hostage. It was time to break free by cultivating my new-found relationship with fire.

Gutsy? Yes. Crazy? Maybe. Transformational? Absolutely.

You’ve gotta get a little crazy in your life every now and again. People are going to talk about you no matter WHAT you do … so you might as well do what you want to do. Makes life a lot more fun and enjoyable. Ensures you are on the right path and living YOUR life and not someone else’s.

What I learned from my walk across the glowing coals …
“When you listen to the voice of your soul, and take action on its behalf, all things become possible.” – Stephanie Foy

My inspiration-in-action tip for you is to go ahead and answer these 2 questions:

1. What is your soul telling you right now?
2. What baby step can you take to bring this inner voice to life?

Go for it!

Sending you a ton of sizzling support as you make your dreams, goals and visions REAL.

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Psssst: the Retreat for Goddesses 2012 will feature FIREWALKING – led by Stephanie Foy – for those women upgrading to the VIP Immersion at the event. This is one of those experiences that WILL change your life forever. It’s the real-deal. If you want IN, grab your spot at the Retreat (only 4 spots left) … then you’ll be given the option to claim one of the remaining spots at the VIP Immersion. Get ready, girl.

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My Birth Story, One Year Later: When Things Don’t Go According to Plan

Exactly 1 year ago today I gave birth to a shining star named Luke Jackson Fenig. This little angel has filled my heart with more love than I thought imaginable. After I had his older brother Sean I wasn’t sure my heart could hold anymore, but I was wrong.

The heart can stretch so far and wide that you almost can’t believe it. But it’s true. If you don’t know what I mean, then I encourage you to try expanding your heart by living full-out through love. You won’t be sorry.

So I haven’t really written publicly about the details of Luke’s birth. It’s been a year now and I think I’m ready. You see, Luke’s birth was the exact opposite of what I had envisioned.

Early on in my pregnancy, I decided that I wanted to have a homebirth. Yup, I wanted to birth this baby in a tub in my home. I read Ina May Gaskin’s “Natural Childbirth” and was all gung-ho on this plan.

It made perfect sense to me. My first son Sean was born naturally after about 3 hours of labor, which is extremely rare for a first-time mom. I remember hearing stories of labors lasting 10, 15, 20 hours for first pregnancies. Not me. Not Sean. He was all about “ready or not, here I come.” He came 2.5 weeks early and really fast. We almost didn’t make it to the hospital. So I figured with pregnancy #2, we’ll just skip the whole getting to the hospital step and have this bambino at home with a midwife.

Well, life doesn’t always go according to plan.

Baby #2 decided he much preferred to have his head facing UP in my belly, which made baby BREACH. I wasn’t too freaked out by this when we discovered this about 2 – 3 months prior to his due date … I just figured baby would turn around before it was time for baby to make his grand entrance.

But to encourage baby to turn, turn, turn, I did EVERY trick in the book to encourage baby to turn – acupuncture, moxibustion, chiropractic, flips in the pool, inversions with ice packs near the baby’s head, talking to the baby, drawing pictures of a head-down baby in the womb … and even attempting an External Cephalic Version (manual turn from the outside performed by doctors and midwives – freakin’ painful!). NOTHING worked. NOTHING.

As the weeks ticked by and we approached 37, 38 and 39 weeks, my doctors strongly suggested I schedule a C-section to safely bring baby into the world. My midwife didn’t deliver breach babies and the doctors wouldn’t deliver a breach baby vaginally. I was devastated. The C-section was scheduled for Monday, April 11, 2011.

The natural birthing experience was very special to me and now I felt I had no choice but to let go of that and have my first-ever surgery.

Fear, nerves, anxiety, disbelief. These were all feelings I was having in my body and mind and soul. It was a challenging time … even though it was supposed to be special. The paradox wasn’t lost on me.

Picking my child’s birthday wasn’t something I wanted to do. I believed strongly in a child’s ability to be born, to choose their day, their way.

Luckily I ran into my friend Amy Webb, a healer and yogi, the Saturday before my scheduled birth, and she offered to do journeywork with me as I navigated this crossroads. It was such a gift. On my journey, I connected with my late sister … and my cats … and my unborn child. I knew I was safe, protected, blessed. I had faith that my child was with me, that we would perform this miracle together. That we would make it to the other side.

After that transformational journey with my friend Amy, I realized I needed to call my doctor and tell him that I didn’t want to schedule the C-section. My husband agreed. We weren’t opposed to the C-section itself, we simply wanted to allow the baby to start labor on his own. There was a very small risk in this (potential of cord prolapse with a breach baby), but we were okay with that. We trusted the birthing process. I trusted my body, my baby, our blessing. I wanted to feel the ache and ecstasy of labor. I wanted to feel those contractions … I prayed to my baby to “make it so.”

We called our doctor on Saturday to push off that surgery for a few more days to give the baby more time to come on his/her own (we didn’t know the sex at that time) … and then the miracle happened. I went into labor early on Monday morning. I was so happy! My water broke and the party had started. I could feel this baby coming …

Off to the hospital we went. Part of me hoped that baby turned, but deep in my heart I knew that was not the case. And to tell you the truth, at that point, I didn’t care. I just wanted to meet my baby. It had been a long, long journey and it was time to begin the next chapter.

And we did. My son Luke Jackson Fenig was born at 7:03 a.m. on April 11, 2011 via C-section. The recovery was tough and a LOT different than my first birth, but that’s life. You survive. You get stronger. You realize that pain is temporary. Family is forever.

I used to hate my surgery scar, but now I wear my scar (I call it a “beauty mark”) proudly. It’s a small price to pay for birthing a dream. Reminds me how powerful I am, you are, we are.  Seriously, we are capable of so much.

What did I learn? You can’t always choose HOW things are going to happen. Leave that to Spirit, Source, God, the Universe (whatever you believe). You’ve gotta focus on your WHY and your WHAT. Get it? Don’t try to control everything. It’s a losing battle. 

In this situation, my WHY was growing our family. My WHAT was birthing a healthy baby. We got our wish. Our dream came true.

Luke

To Luke, thank you for filling our lives with light. It’s been pure joy to watch you grow. I love that you and Sean have each other. I love even more that your dad and I have you both, our beautiful boys.

The best is yet to come …

Nothing Will Change Until You Do

A few short years ago, I was dazed and confused.

Although I had broken the magical 6-figure ceiling in my corporate job as a conference producer and was living it up in my kick-ass high-rise apartment overlooking the Hudson River in New York City with my husband, I was restless. Antsy. Unhappy. Stuck. Bored.

All the Coach bags in the world (I seriously had a fetish) and Happy Hours (I thought alcohol would make everything better) didn’t scratch the itch I felt for something MORE.

What that MORE was, I couldn’t quite put my finger on. So I kept doing what I had always done: worked harder and harder and harder until one day I felt like I couldn’t breathe anymore.

I was getting nowhere fast.

What did I do next? Decide to change it all by taking off on a month-long adventure through Asia with my hubby … and then train to become a yoga teacher … all while continuing to hold down my full-time job and try to figure out what my true calling was. Those experiences shook me to my core, changed me, spoke to me.

I couldn’t go back to “old Jenny.”

I knew there was more to life than the way I was living. I wanted more freedom, more flexibility, more fun, more fabulousness. I wanted more space. I wanted to spread my wings.

So one November day in 2007, I walked away from my old, comfortable, lucrative job … and set out on a path into the unknown.

It was one of the scariest days of my life.

I literally felt like I was weaning myself off of a drug. The drug of the conventional path, the drug of certainty, the drug of “this is how everyone else does it.”

It was this clear-cut DECISION that changed the course of my life forever. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I essentially gave myself permission to be ME and to share my message with the world in the most powerful, meaningful way possible.

In the time since my giant leap, my life has transformed in ways that sometimes even I can’t imagine.

  • I’ve built a sustainable, thriving, virtual business with multiple streams of income serving and coaching amazing women from all over the world.
  • I’ve mentored with top coaches who have earned millions of dollars in their freedom-based businesses and changed countless lives.
  • I’ve birthed two beautiful baby boys.
  • My family relocated from the bright lights of New York City to our dream community in the Berkshires of Western Massachusetts.
  • I’ve traveled the world.
  • I’ve created a schedule that allows me the flexibility to do amazing work AND be there for my husband and kids so we can spend quality time together doing things we love.
  • I live my yoga daily.

But, it didn’t look like this when I was getting started. It was dark, lonely, scary, confusing! My head would be spinning most days. I took a lot of wrong turns. I admit: I’d often quench my fears by reading job postings … thinking that maybe someone could just start telling me what to do again if I went back to working for someone else. But deep down, I knew that wasn’t my path …

And it’s likely not yours either if you have a message YOU want to share with the world. If you are a woman on a mission …

And if that’s you, I don’t want you to have to go through that MUCK I went through. It’s downright sucky and unnecessary. It’s a waste of your time.

So … I created something spectacular to help you BREAK FREE and LIVE YOUR DREAM. Jenny, you get one precious life. Why spin your wheels?

Announcing …

Fiery Focus + Clear Confidence for Mission-Driven Women Who Are Ready to Move Forward In the Live Your Dream Private Coaching Program With Me As Your Guide

I WISH I would have had this when I was going through my big transformation to be more visible, more me … and play a much bigger game in life. Would have saved me A LOT of sleepless nights and heartache.

My Live Your Dream Private Coaching Program is your chance to work with me one-on-one and up close and personal – not just as a yoga-inspired business and life coach, but as a rock-solid mentor who has built my own business by working with savvy women-on-a-mission just like you. This program is uniquely designed for those who desire individualized attention, the utmost confidentiality, and an unwavering commitment to your raging success.

What I’ve put together is simply spectacular.

And for the first time since the fall, I’m opening up 5 spots (and 2 are already filled) for private coaching with me. I’m excited to see who is ready to step forward and stake claim to their big, bold vision.

Are you ready to get unstuck?

“You can live your dreams if you can embrace change. It’s by taking chances that you’ll learn how to be brave.” – Nikita Koloff

Everything you need to know about this life-changing opportunity is here:

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Spots are filled by application and interview so we know we are a perfect fit for each other. The doors of the Live Your Dream Challenge Private Coaching Program close on Wednesday, March 28 (or when the remaining spots fill).

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“Remember a real decision is measured by the fact that you’ve taken a new action. If there’s no action, you haven’t really decided.” – Tony Robbins

Go for it!

http://www.IAmReadytoLiveMyDream.com

Blessings At 81 Years Old

Guest Post by Sidney Fenig, M.D.

Hi! Iʼm Sidney and I woke up one day, and realized that Iʼm now 81 years old. How and when this happened is an enigma to me! You see, Iʼm still not sure about the whole thing.

I remember being a little boy, in Newburgh, New York, the last of 4 children of Fanny and Samuel, both immigrants from Poland, unfamiliar with the language spoken around them, unfamiliar with the customs around them, and unfamiliar with the new world they found themselves in.

My dad was a window washer, abused and mistreated by the wealthy clients who took advantage of his illiteracy. My mom was a housewife. Education and goals for the 4 children were not their concern. Putting food on the table was! And religion was the backbone of their existence. Saturday was spent at the Schul. A day of rest and quiet.

My education was mediocre … I didnʼt excel in anything. In fact, I graduated with a commercial diploma, told by my guidance counselor to learn a trade! Ah yes, and what a trade I chose.

I loaded Coca-Cola into trucks! My downfall with that company happened when I tried to organize the workers to demand more money … and was fired! Not that that mattered much. There were other such jobs available in those days.

My sister Claireʼs husband, Harry, suggested I take the entrance exam to City College, as, for a reason I truly do not understand, he believed I was smart and needed to try to make something of myself! I took it, passed, and so began my new life.

I entered as an education major, but soon found the classes boring. I changed my major to pre-med. And, the new Sidney Fenig came into being.

I graduated with honors, Magna Cum Laude, and went on to apply to medical school. Being a City College graduate in those days, made this decision impossible … no medical school wanted us. So, undaunted in my new “psyche”, I applied to Brandeis University, and went on to get a masters degree in organic chemistry. Then, I was accepted into the Albert Einstein School of Medicine, newly founded that year!

So, the child of immigrant parents, a poor student with absolutely no goal in life … is now, a medical doctor.

And here I am, now 81 years old, reflecting on what I have accomplished in those astounding number of years! I think back about my parents. How fortunate I was to have been loved and cared for. How fortunate I am to have wonderful memories of days helping my Poppy wash windows with a Phi Beta Kappa key attached to my belt. How I wish he had lived to know how I succeeded.

I remember how my mother, in her unsophisticated, quiet way, was proud of her Sidney, telling all her friends about her son.

And I remember how, once I had earned my first few dollars, I went back to the store in Newburgh where my Poppy had washed windows, and bought my first new suit!

One reaches what we call “old age,” and we are left with the thought of those things we wish we had done. I have those thoughts also, but as I reflect on my life, I am in awe of where I started and where I am now!

The young people today spend much on the education of their children, offering them all kinds of classes and activities to increase their intellectual capacity and curiosity. I envy them, both parent and child. For those days are so precious and so fleeting. But, in my heart I know, that what was given to me by the quiet and often unexpressed love from my parents, made me the man I am today…

So, at the ripe old age of 81, I think of my Poppy and my mother, and know that I am blessed! And I think of my wonderful grandchildren, blessed by parents who give them the love only a parent can give. And I think of the days I have spent with them, hoping that the memories of those days live past me. For, as it says in the prayer book I read at Temple, “the acts of goodness live on in the hearts of those who cherish their memory.”

A wonderful thought at 81!

Sidney Fenig, M.D., is a loving husband, father, grandfather, friend and cardiologist.

Father-in-law to Jenny Fenig, the publisher of this blog, Sid has taught her the meaning of generosity, grace and quiet wisdom.