Category Archives: Gratitude

How to Build Bridges in Business and in Life

My Grandpa was a cabbage and lettuce farmer and for many years as a young curious girl,  I watched  him work and helped him harvest the crops. There is nothing else he would have rather done. It was in his bones.  I asked him one day if  I could take a turn driving  ‘Ole Blue’ as he called his rusty and reliable tractor.   He responded, “Have you been paying attention?  Yes Sir.”IMG_0032

Pulling his hankerchief from his pocket, he wiped the sweat off his brow, stepped down and said,  “Well, get up there and give it a go.”

 Like my Grandpa, many of us  feel driven by a purpose or calling- to start our own business,  become a life coach, create a blog,  write a book,  or get healthy.  Or perhaps even wish to master the art of staying calm under pressure. Yep, a few of these are on my list too.  So, how do we do this and meet with success?  

There are four key factors in building  bridges and accomplishing our goals: 

1.  Know the leaders/competitors 

Seek out and study those in the industry  and in life who have thrown themselves In the Arena and become champions in their field. What skill sets, resources and connections do they possess?

2.  Be their customer/follower

Listen to their story. Pay attention to the characteristics and behaviors of those you wish to emulate. Demonstrate loyalty to their product and service and reciprocity is sure to follow.

3.  Be their partner

True leaders want to see and help others succeed. What will your contributions be in this relationship? How can you help build them up? 

4.  Create your own niche

Be authentically You.  Focus on your unique talents, skills, traits and passions . This is one of the most important tools needed in building bridges in both our professional and personal lives.

Here are a few of the leaders in their respective industries that I follow and partner with who encourage, motivate and greatly inspire me to  step  In the Arena  in accomplishing my goals and reaching my dreams.

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*Steven Pressfield author of The War of Art, Turning Pro and The Legend of Bagger Vance- made into a major motion film starring Will Smith and Matt Damon.  Pressfield   offers invaluable wisdom  and great insight on  beating Resistance often disguised as our Muse.

*David Scott Mann– 

Founder of Lead Strong  leadership coaching, author, real estate investor , mentor and veteran- Lt. Colonel(ret), Army Special Forces Green Beret.  Scott’s expertise and skills extend well beyond the battlefield; training others to connect, succeed  and leave deep tracks  in this world through the power of storytelling. An Elite Leader like no other.

*Danny Ray Jr.–  Contributing writer- Life Hack,  and creator of  Dream Big, Dream Often .   Danny is a visionary  and community leader both on and offline with a seemingly inexhaustible reserve for helping others recognize and reach their dreams. A dedicated servant and advocate for those whose lives have been impacted by Multiple Scerlosis. The world could use a few more Danny’s.


“Pay attention and give it a go”  Grandpa 



For Love of the Game

Opening day for another great season of baseball.

As it does each year, it brings with it the reminders of why we love the game…
The National Anthem played while the boys stand there with their hats held across their hearts, the smell of burgers and popcorn fill the air, volunteers everywhere, little siblings running up and down the bleachers-laughing, screaming, crying because they just dropped their ice cream-parents cheering for each and every kid on the team as if they were their own.

Yes, a sense of family is born each season- and with that, means teaching the boys to be humble for days that end with a win and dust off the clay when losses come their way, learn from them and keep on, keeping on.  I venture to say this is true in most aspects of our lives.


What made today really awesome not only for my son but for all the players and parents was the umpire.

Charles is unlike any other. We have had the pleasure of getting to know him for a few seasons now. An Army veteran and former player himself-once upon a time was recruited and played for a Minor league team with dreams of making it big before repeated injuries set him on a slightly different path. Charles has a true passion for the game, and brings with him a genuine care and concern for each and every player. Often taking time to offer words of encouragement, give specific pointers, strutting his goofy dance moves on the field, always calling a fair game and keeping the kids and parents laughing with his amazing sense of humor and love of life.


He serves as a wonderful reminder that regardless of the obstacles we must overcome and where we work, we can do it with passion, to the best of our ability and  seize   every opportunity to make meaningful connections with others.

I thank him for his service to our country and to the kids in our community especially #42.



Nature’s Arena

Mostly it is loss which teaches us about the worth of things.

~Arthur Schopenhauer 

This has been a difficult time for many in our community- countless firefighters and other first responders working tirelessly to put out this massive wildfire in our area- many elderly impacted by the enormous amounts of smoke, people without power, school children evacuated, can’t get to work, stuck in traffic and can’t get home.

Yesterday, one of my students and his family now have no house to go home to. None of their belongings were saved.  Yet they are simply happy to be alive.

“I once cried because I had no shoes then I met a man who had no feet.”

Keeping life in perspective.

I hope this serves as a small, gentle reminder to begin and end each day with a grateful heart.

I Believe


I Believe in miracles, I’ve had a few you see

the gifted hands of doctors who’ve saved my son and me


I Believe in giving as a means to help and heal

the cold, the tired, the hungry with a warm and hearty meal

I Believe in the power of story

that lifts us from our dark and dreary night

so that we may see the glory of the early morning light

I Believe and support the soldier some who’ve left this earth too soon,

for they protect my children sleeping peacefully in their room

I Believe in freedoms that allow us to bow our heads and pray,

however we choose to worship on any given day

I Believe in forgiveness for those who beg and sin

as most often we know the enemy is within

I Believe in getting lost along our nature’s path

so that we may gain the wisdom that keeps us from the wrath

I Believe in a love that is patient, kind and true

and please know my Dear, I will always Believe in You.



Nature’s Arena

Several years ago my daughter and I were playing outside in the driveway. She quietly tip- toed over to me and said “Mommy, look up.” I was able to quickly grab my camera for a handful of  images.  For a few brief moments we sat together observing the majestic view of these beautiful creatures right above us that represent strength, freedom and opportunity that so many in this country have fought valiantly to give to us.  


For me, it serves as a simple reminder of what makes this country and our people so beautiful.  I pray that we focus  on what unites us as a nation and work together as Americans and as my daughter so simply put- remember to “Look Up” 🙂

Happy 4th of July!!!!!!!

Eagles perch

In the Arena Spotlight – 7/3/16

One of my greatest joys in creating this site is reading and connecting with others through our stories- and lifting one another up. 🙂

I try as best I can to share the thoughts and writings of so many of you.

Daily life has a way of getting the best of you- IF you let it.  This won’t be happening to me- however, I will need to be more efficient with my time In the Arena.  As  a working full-time Mom, community outreach volunteer, taxi driver of said children, cheerleader on the sidelines of my kids games and oh, yeah… pursuing a new endeavor and taking care of Me- time management is I guess you can say- super important.

I will be highlighting  In the Arena Spotlight posts once a week that challenge my thinking, lift others up, inspire, offer up a dish of laughter, love and demonstrate courage, principles of leadership and purpose.  Please click over and get to know these wonderful people and writers. 🙂

In the Arena:


*Brooke on The Utopia Universe always does her best to have an optimistic outlook on life which lets face it- can be hard to do.  I often feel a sense of joy and peace after reading her posts and she is always so kind to recognize the work of others 


*Momma over at  A Momma’s View is great at creating connections with others.  She genuinely wants to get to know those who visit her site and that she interacts with and provides refreshing perspectives on what it means to be human. Be sure to check out her  views in the land  ‘down under.’


*Danny -AKA- The  Bomb Diggity as I like to call him…  over at Dream Big, Dream Often  challenges me to turn my brain on and reflect on those hard life questions while always going above and beyond to help others-and- with  a great sense of humor despite facing some pretty big challenges in life.  He is the epitome of being In the Arena!


*BBB- BeautyBeyondBones– This young lady is a talented writer, amazingly strong in her convictions and  what I would consider to be a wonderful role model for young women/girls. She is very insightful and fully immerses herself into understanding the challenges she has endured and  faced with grace, humility, a sense of humor and tremendous Faith.


*Kerri Elizabeth-  at Inside Out Fitness and Nutrition– She leads by example- motivates and inspires others to value  a healthy lifestyle and radiates warmth and a deep love for the land, nature and above all else her children. And you won’t believe she is a Grandma. Trust me- you won’t believe it! This woman must have written the book on the fountain of youth 🙂


*Mr. Rodge’s Neighborhood– A fellow educator who understands the great joys and yes, challenges we fellow teachers face in the classroom.  He seems to hold many keys to unlock  motivation and maps towards success.   He is a newcomer to the world of blogging and I think he has a bright future ahead of him! Be sure to stop by and say hi.


Dare greatly

















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