Jan 142015
 

Happy New Year to all! It’s that time of year again, as we return to work after the holidays, and move back into some of our daily routines I wanted to take a moment to remind us about the resolutions we have thought about for 2015.

I spoke with my team earlier this week about their goals for the year and was excited to hear so many different intentions that everyone has. Many of the goals were health related, in taking time for themselves, taking care of their bodies, slowing down and letting things flow.

I intend to support my team with their personal as well as professional goals this year and am making a note in my calendar to have fun with sending them little reminders in support of their desires. When you let other know of your intentions, you create additional support that can assist you in reaching your goals.

After our discussion, I also encouraged the team to think about ONE word that describes how they want to BE. So many of us make resolutions and get disappointed when we don’t reach them. Many times its because the way we are BEING is not in alignment with the goals we have set for ourselves. When we begin to bring them into alignment, life begins to flow with ease and grace.

Last year my word was NURTURE and I am completely amazed at all that has unfolded in my life when I focused on nurturing myself. I have grown by leaps and bounds. One of the best lessons learned is that when I take time to invest and nurture myself, it is the best gift that I can give my family. Not only do I have more opportunities showing up in my life, but so do my husband and children. But the first step was taking the plunge and nurturing myself as a woman first.

Vision boardThis year my one word is PLAYFUL. As a working mom of 4 boys, I can end up being the more serious one who tries to create a sense of order in the household. This past year, I have learned how to take more time to rest, relax and meditate, but have not focused as much time for play. My 5 and 10 year old constantly remind me that its time to play and not to work. As I have started to embrace being more playful, I have realized that when I am having fun, exploring and being playful, I am able to enjoy and be in the moment. I enjoy things I may never have realized and create some amazing memories. When I let go of my worries, inhibitions, thoughts and fears and dive into letting go and having fun, I create amazing things. Attached is a picture of my intuitive vision board I created a couple months before I chose my word of the year. Its amazing how it totally represents being playful. Its just a reminder that our heart and soul knows what we need way before our mind is able to see.

I encourage you to share your ONE WORD for the year. If you want to share why great. If not, please go ahead and just share your ONE WORD. I think it would be fun to see what others are thinking and provide support along the way.

Nov 242014
 

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I wanted to share thoughts around things I was thankful for, but wanted to give it a different twist. Most people share thoughts and ideas around wonderful things and people they are grateful for, however, some of my most grateful memories this year are not what I would have expected.

Let me begin with a story from just this past week.

We had an incident in our house where my son wiped out my husband’s iphone. You can only imagine the anger and unhappiness that my husband felt when he realized that all his contacts, apps, etc… were GONE! I know how it feels, I have been there. He chose some not so nice words to say in the heat of the moment and my son was devastated. When I went up into his bedroom to talk with him, he refused to acknowledge me. He hid under the bed and refused to speak to anyone. I went into his room looking to comfort him, and I was unable to do so. Here I was trying to be a “good mom” and be a loving shoulder to cry on and he didn’t want it. Why? My heart was breaking for him, because I knew he was feeling bad and wanted to stop the pain, but he didn’t want anything to do with me. All he wanted was his dad (who just claimed he wanted nothing to do with him) and refused to speak to anyone else.

Later the next day I met with a coach and we spoke about the event that occured. We took a deeper dive into what was really going on in our family relationships. Her guidance, was rather than trying to figure things out from the mind, dive into the heart. We began looking to understand how and why my son might have been feeling the way he was. Why was he looking to use my husbands iphone? What stories was he potentially creating in his head about the entire situation? What did he really want? What was his heart feeling and needing?

I realized that when I walked into his room, I was in my head and not my heart. I walked in with an agenda of wanting to comfort and console him, but what he really wanted was to be loved and accepted for who he is, my son, a child of God. Me coming into his room in my head space didn’t feel real and authentic to him at all. When I was in the moment, I couldn’t see it, I thought I was being who I needed to be, but now I see. This evening before bedtime, I shifted my energy to be more heart centered than mind centered and he allowed me into his loving presence. I was able to love him and snuggle with him where he could feel my love. What a precious GIFT he is to me and an amazing lesson learned from this not so happy experience. Before today, I never would have thought to think about the unexpected things that happen as gifts, but now that I am awake and can totally see, I can embrace the lessons to be learned from the experiences. I listed below the top 10 that came to mind this morning, but I am sure there are many more of these unexpected.

Top 10 Unexpected Things I am Grateful for (In no particular order)

  1. My son stealing my ipad and taking it to school with him
  2. My mom leaving the dinner table during the middle of my 5 year old son’s birthday
  3. Completely bombing an audition for a choir
  4. Leaving my wallet at starbucks for someone else to steal and the use my debit card to purchase “clash of clan” in app purchases
  5. My dad sending me an email resigning from being my sons confirmation sponsor
  6. Outsourcing some activities and not receiving deliverables on time (frustrating)
  7. My best friend telling me she was no longer going on trip with me (and that I should be happy for her)
  8. A few financial blunders; finding ourselves in debt that we never realized
  9. My son messing up my husband’s iphone (and him not wanting any comfort from me)
  10. And yes, gaining a few extra pounds this year (there are lessons to be learned here as well)

I will continue to cherish the times where my children push my buttons, a failure or setback occurs, or something unexpected happens. These are truly gifts from God. As I reflect to look at my top 10 list of Unexpected Things I am Grateful for, I am see how challenges and failures can really become some of the best lessons learned in life. However, I must take the time to be awake and process my feelings in the moment and then begin to embrace life’s many beautiful lessons. These are not things that I would ever wish for myself or for anyone, but am grateful that God knew what my heart and soul needed. I have certainly learned valuable life lessons in each and every “unexpected gift”.

I encourage you to feel into the “Unexpected Things” you are grateful for this year.

Nov 072014
 

I wish, I wish, I wish.  I have said those words many times.  I wish my office was organized, functional and beautiful.  As someone who works from home majority of the time, I spend many hours of the day in my office.   I want the space that I work in to be inviting with positive energy and not cluttered and disorganized with things all over the place.  Last week, I made a decision last week I was going to stop the madness and ask for help in this area.

I have always longed for my house to be neat and organized as well as look nice too, but it has  never been my specialty.  I decided to hire two design consultants to come in and re-organize and re-decorate my office.  Since I basically live in this space, there are lots of papers everywhere, books readily available, stuff for kids, pictures, scrapbooks, etc… You name it, it was likely in my office, all but a pool table.  (That is in inside joke for those of you who know Jim Wacker, whose office is right next to the pool table.) =)

These 2 women came to my home and in 2.5 hours we tossed a bunch of papers, organized my files, moved around furniture and redecorated my room.  I was completely amazed at what they were able to do in such a short period of time.

In addition to that, there were a few more items that would totally uplevel the space.  A bulletin board, curtains, rug and a few other trinkets to make it functional and pretty.  The designers made a list for me and said they would give me ideas and then I could go shopping.  Or for an extra fee they would do the shopping for me.

WOW!  I typically don’t like to pay people for something that I could do myself, especially shopping, however, I knew that if I tried to do it myself, it would

a) take me longer than it needed to,
b) I would create stress and frustration in looking for “the perfect” items.  (which of course if I knew what ti buy, I would have already bought it).
c) I could spend hours online shopping and still not find what i was looking for.

Normally I would deliberate for hours and outline the pros and cons of  my option.  This time, I listened to my heart and decided to take the plunge and let them shop for me.  Yes, I actually paid someone to buy decorations and supplies for my office.  It was such an invigorating feeling to be free of having to make these shopping decisions and know and believe with confidence that they would do an amazing job.

How many times have you wished for something and thought that maybe you should hire someone else, but you didn’t because you knew you should be able to do it ?  Hire a cleaning lady, someone to mow your lawn, organize your home, paint a room, fix broken things in the house. a tutor for your kids etc…  I encourage you to seriously think about the VALUE of having someone else who is skilled in this area do it for you.   You are actually giving them a gift by allowing them to share their gifts with you.  The energy exchange is truly amazing.  Having someone else who LOVES to do these tasks can provide you with so much more ENERGY.  You no longer have to feel stressed or worries about something, as you know it will get completed.

I would love to hear about situations where you have paid someone else to do something amazing for you that allowed you more time and energy to do the things you LOVE to do.

(p.s.  If anyone lives in the Chicago Western Suburbs and is interested in their contact information please let me know).  They are amazing and inexpensive.  TOTALLY MORE THAN WORTH THE VALUE>

Nov 062014
 

We all know how good it feels to write down a list of things to do and feel this sense of relief when things get crossed off that list. It is a sense of accomplishment. Even if the task is as simple as write a thank you note, call a friend. Some of us are so busy that our lists are so long because we don’t want to forget about all of the little things that need to be taken care of. Let’s face it, if we don’t write it down, will be actually remember to do it?

As my husband prepared for going out of town this weekend, I suddenly realized that I was going to be responsible for more things with him gone. My husband is a stay an home dad and is rarely ever gone, so a change in routine like this is not typical for me. My son has a hockey tournament in Detroit, so they are gone from Thursday to Sunday and I realized that my normal routine was going to be out of whack.

My first thought that set in was PANIC. Oh Crap! I need to re-arrange my schedule. Of course I needed to add a few things to my daily “to do’s”, re-arrange some appointments and change up my regular routine. My mind was initially thinking, how am I going to run all 3 kids to everywhere they need to be and still do the things that I already had planned. If we are not careful, the mind can drive us absolutely crazy. After I looked at my calendar and accounted for a few big things, I then came across this photo below.

To do listI was then reminded of the important things in life. So while I had other things planned for the evening, I listened to my heart and just went with the flow. Each boy had their own things going on. My oldest son took responsibility for helping out to make dinner without asking. Yeah! I was so grateful and counted my blessings. My youngest want to carve a pumpkin, snuggle, play games and read books, so while it wasn’t in the plan to spend all that time with him I did it anyway. He of course prolonged bed time, since I had 3 kids to take care of myself, but I loved every minute of it. I let go of controlling the evening to my plans. Then there is my other son who has been struggling with turning in homework at school. I grounded him when he got home, because this was the 4th time this week that some teacher reached out and said that he didn’t turn in or complete his homework. Ugh! I was so not having the patience for him. So I had to breathe. (MANY TIMES) He of course was not happy with me this evening, when my consequences were not the same as his dads. I could feel the tension in our relationship which started aching at my heart.

None of this was on the “TO DO” list, however, it was definitely on God’s to do list. There was a lesson to be learned from each child and experience I encountered. Even as I write this now as the kids are off to sleep, I can’t help but think about my middle son and what I am supposed to learn from this experience. I keep being attracted to the words Practice Kindness from the picture. I certainly was not being kind to him, since I was disappointed in his behaviors and needed to teach him some important lessons, but maybe there is something going on with him and he is just crying out for attention. Is there something going on that I haven’t be present to? Being mad, frustrated and disappointed is not going to help. This is my chance to be open to what is really going on. More to ponder this weekend. If I focused on my original to do list for the day, I would have totally missed out on the gift of being present.

So the next time you make your “To Do” list, be sure to add the little things that really matter as you never know what lessons might be revealed to you.

Oct 102014
 

Have you ever thought about what Whole Parenting looks like? Or to put it another way, how could we illustrate no-hole parenting? Now you might be thinking this is a really interesting concept. I caution you, the key is not to focus on how to be a better parent, but rather BEING parented as a child of God.

I attended a Bible Study last weekend and it was so moving I had to share with all of you. No matter if you are 6 or 76, you are a Child of God and he wants you to love and parent you as his Child always and forever. We need to remember that even as we age, we still need the guidance of a loving parent.

In this lesson, Beth Moore shared 6 different categories for “Whole Parenting”, 3 were motherly qualities and 3 were fatherly qualities. If one of the “pieces” of Whole Parenting are missing, then we will not truly find “peace”.

Mothering Parenting – The nurturing and loving side of parenting.

  1. Nurturing – God’s wants to nurture us like a mother would nurture a nursing child. God is compassionate, loving and teaches the importance of self care. God leads by example of how a mother should nurture not only her child, but her inner child. She must learn to nurture herself, before she can truly nurture others.
  2. Affectionately Desired – God wants us. He doesn’t just tolerate us. He truly is delighted to be our parent. Many of us question our self worth and have thoughts of being unwanted or unneeded. This can’t be any further from the truth. We are all WANTED in the eyes of God and have a divine purpose for this life.
  3. Accepting Parent’s Very Self – This represents the fact that Christ’s spirit always lives inside of us. He share of himself and pours himself into us on a regular basis. He loves us from the inside out.

Fathering Parentings – The instructional and teaching side of parenting

1. Exhortation – God wants to teach us what we need to know to follow his will. The child works beside the father and he teaches them way you need to know. Each child is called by God to do good works and He is there to teach and instruct the path forward.

2. Encouraged – God wants to support and encourage us as we move forward on our journey. He knows that the road won’t always be easy and obstacles may come your way, but if you trust and believe, God will provide the encouragement you need to keep going.

3. Charged to Walk Worthy – God wants you to GET UP and do what he has called you to do. How many of us are searching for our purpose in life? How many of us think we know what our purpose might be, but are afraid to take the necessary steps to move forward? God wants you to STEP UP TO THE PLATE. Walk the talk and just do it. You will find that if you do not move foward with God’s plan, he will discipline you in some way shape or form to get you back on track. He knows what you need and will lovingly provide course corrections as necessary.

I loved this last one. How many of us are looking and searching for our life’s purpose. It is inside each and every one of us and its our God given duty to dig deep inside to uncover the dreams and path God has in store for us. He never said that he would give us a roadmap with all the directions nicely laid out. But he did say to have FAITH, TRUST and BELIEVE.

When you look at this list, do you find one or more “missing pieces” in your life? Once you find the missing “piece” and are able to fill the hole, you will find your missing “peace”.

 

Sep 192014
 

attended an amazing event this week where the speaker reinforced the importance of goal setting. Only 10% of the people in the world achieve their dreams and goals and unleash their own talent? Why is that?

The speaker gave a tip and shared that successful people write down their goals and journal about them daily. Only 2 people in the room rose their hand that they actually did these 2 things. WOW! This was a room full of entrepreneurs who have amazing hopes and dreams for unleashing the talents they have to be of service to others. We all know its important to write down our goals, but do you journal about them as a daily habit?

We are all smart intelligent people. What is it that these people are doing that the rest of us still haven’t figured out? I personally am someone who loves reading leadership and development materials. There are tons of amazing authors who give us amazing tips and strategies. This week on our HR Town Hall, our new Talent Strategy Managing Director Nate Boaz recommended an amazing set of books to SPARK our development.

The people in HR that follow my blog have already seen this, however, many of you are from other parts of the organization. I felt compelled to share these great insights around some recommended reading for igniting the SPARK in yourself, your team or your organization.

I have read two of the recommended books and seen the movie Moneyball. I would love to hear thoughts from anyone who has read any of the books below and any great insights and wisdom that they provided.

Let’s continue to unleash the talent that we have within to have a greater impacts on ourselves, our teams, our families, our communities as well as our business of Accenture. ENJOY!

The Thinkers Toolkit
Naked Statistics
Drive
Leadership and Self Deception
Second Machine Age
The Innovator’s DNA
Moneyball
Financial Intelligence
Give and Take
Difficult Conversations

Sep 122014
 

This past week I had the opportunity to audition for our new church band. I love singing and have been in church choirs all my life. The day before the audition, I realized I needed to learn a new song. CRAP! I listened to it on UTUBE and then found sheet music to pluck away on my keyboard. I was nervous by not worried or anxious.

After I sang the melody, they asked me to sing harmony, and I explained to them that I didn’t hear any harmony in the video that I listened to, and I didn’t practice any. They said that is ok, just find the harmony and sing it.

Just wing it, find the Harmony and Sing IT!!!

I have never done that before. While I sang in choirs for years, the sheet music was always available to learn from. I never learned instantly by ear. They were looking for someone who could just listen to a song and pick up the harmony. “Like that.” I didn’t have the skills.

When I walked out of the building, I couldn’t help but feel crushed!” I thought to myself, if I was really that good of a singer, I should be able to just find the harmony. Tears rolled down my face as I drove home. It was devastating not to make it, but I was SO EMBARRASSED that I wasted everyones time & couldn’t do what they asked me to do.

My family reminded me everything happens for a reason. (A taste of my own medicine) Is this what they mean when they say some of the most successful people failed miserably and got back up on their feet again? Yes, I felt like I totally failed, but at the same time, I have this burning desire to sing. So why did this happen? What am I supposed to learn from this experience?

While I have been a singer all my life, I never had professional lessons, so singing has been more of a hobby. I was always told I had a strong voice, but am certain some singing lessons would uplevel my musical talents.

I have a dream to bring music into my business and it feels like this was God’s way of opening a new door for me. He knows I love to sing and I want to use music to serve others in the world. What a better way than to get more skilled in the area. It’s one thing to sing in a choir or band for fun, but it’s another thing to uplevel my talents so that I can be of better service to others. So while investing in singing lessons was not in my 30 , 90 or 120 day business plan, God revealed that it needs to be. He has opened a new door for me.

“Follow your bliss and the universe will open up doors where there were only walls”. WOW! When I focus my time on activities that bring me pleasure, God opens up new doors for my life.

If you are struggling with something in your life or have some goals you want to reach. Stop for a moment and find something you absolutely get pleasure from and spend time doing it. You may find that experiencing the bliss from this one activity could change your circumstances and open up new doors for you.

Jan 102014
 

Do you struggle with getting your family to make healthier choices? Do you feel like there is never enough time to make healthy meals for your family? Do you find yourself questioning all the information you hear about what is good vs. not good? If you said yes to any of these questions and at times feel overwhelmed with getting your family to eat better, then Nutrition Renewed is for you.

Nutrition Renewed is a course that will help you navigate through all of the various messages you hear about today regarding health. It will also educate you on what might be helping versus hurting your family’s health.

This program is ideal if you want to:

  • Uncover insights on what “Big Business” and the FDA is not telling us
  • Increase awareness on the growing # of health issues and how to prevent them
  • Reduce money spent on doctor visits, pharmaceuticals and time off due to illness
  • Understand what to avoid and how to add nourishing foods to your body
  • Develop new ideas on how to read labels and make simple healthier meals

All change begins with one small step. The Nutrition Renewed program is Step One in your journey to expanding your nutrition knowledge and correcting any misconceptions to creating a healthy environment for you and your family.

To learn more on a FREE intro to this class series, attend one of the 2 sessions below. You can click on the link below or reply via email and I will send a calendar invite to the INTRO session.

INTRO CLASS DETAILS

Fri 1/10 11:30cst https://Lync.accenture.com/meet/jennifer.a.bugajsky/8YKWPH7F Mon 1/13 12:00cst https://Lync.accenture.com/meet/jennifer.a.bugajsky/83M4QCMN

Or if you are ready to dive right in, REGISTER TODAY for ONE or MORE of the classes below!

CLASSES BEGIN MID- LATE JANUARY
  • Session 1- NUTRITION BASICS
  • Session 2- ADDING THE GOOD STUFF (Nutrition Education & How the Body Absorbs the Food We Eat)
  • Session 3- REMOVING THE BAD STUFF (Sugar, Chemicals, Reading Labels & Avoiding Toxins)
  • Session 4- MEAL PLANS & STEPPING FORWARD

Jen is a board certified health coach whose mission is to provide a wealth of education, a touch of inspiration and lots of resources to make a positive difference in the health of families. She creates awareness as well as the support you need in your family’s journey to overall wellness. To see more about Jen’s story and services visit: www.onepowerfulstep.com

 

Oct 052013
 

While the focus on my blog is usually health related, this week’s information is related to your financial health. I met with a group of friends for dinner earlier this week and one of them is planning a 2 week trip abroad and wanted to ensure her finanical safety on the trip.

She shared stories from past trips of seeing and/or hearing friends being pickpocketed and not knowing it had happened to them. This is not something I normally worry about on a daily basis, but is definitely something many people think about when traveling. She then shared something interesting about a new feature on some credit cards that can be easily accessed THROUGH your purse or clothing. It is a new feature called “blink”.

When she described it, all of us opened up our wallets to see if any of the credit cards had this new feature. Unknown to all of us, at least one of all of our cards had this blink technology logo. I had never heard of such a concept before, so when I got home I decided to google it and learn more about it. Here is an article from FORBES magazine with some facts around the new technology. While it might have some new cool features, this article also shows how easy it is for a pickpocketor to steal information from your card, when your card is NOT even out in the open. I personally would rather be safe than sorry when it comes to a situation like this. My friend said she called her credit card company and asked them to resend her a card without the blink. Any they did.

If anyone has had any experience with this new blink technology (either good or bad), I’d love to hear some other thoughts. In case you haven’t heard of blink, attached is the FORBES article. Hacker’s Demo Shows How Easily Credit Cards Can Be Read Through Clothes And Wallets

http://www.forbes.com/sites/andygreenberg/2012/01/30/hackers-demo-shows-how-easily-credit-cards-can-be-read-through-clothes-and-wallets/

Oct 052013
 

Ok yes, I said Christmas, and Halloween isn’t here yet, but I was on a call yesterday and someone said it was 86 days left until Christmas, just about the right amount of time it takes to change a habit. For the past 12 weeks, I have been providing a variety of different suggestions or recommendations for things you can do to focus on the health of your family.

Some of you have shared some successes. Kudos to you! But how many of you have thought to yourself, I really like that idea and I want to make some changes, but there is always some excuse that gets in the way of taking action. I don’t have the time to make that recipe, I don’t want to pay for organic products, I don’t want to spend additional money on natural supplements. My kids are fussy eaters. How can cleaning products really impact my kids allergies? Some of you may still be skeptical wondering, is this for real? Will these suggestions and products really make a difference in my family’s health?

I have seen many examples of where changing one small thing, made a huge difference. The only way to know is to give it a shot. If you see an area of your family’s health that could use a little TLC, I encourage you to take the challenge and act now. Lets face it, when it comes to our health, many of us don’t put it on the top of the priority list. I encourage you to pick one small thing that you can commit to do regarding your family’s health.

Here are a some suggestions to jog your memory of where you might begin:
- Read food labels
- Eliminate products with “the bad stuff” (start with just one item at a time)
- i.e. Take a look at your cereal and notice what’s in it
- Remove “processed foods and those with preservatives”
- i.e. Take a look at the meat products you buy (Try Boar’s Head deli products)
- Add more raw and organic foods
- i.e. Commit to only buying Organic Strawberries or Cage Free Eggs
- Remove toxic household cleaners from your home and use natural products
- Start adding natural supplements to your diet
- Drink more water
- Start creating and making meals plans ahead of time
- Plan ahead special healthy after school snacks or have a healthy snack to choose from
- Try a new recipe
- i..e Try one new recipe each week
- i..e Learn to make a homemade soup now the weather is starting to cool off
- Or add your own other idea or tailor one of these as there are many more…

Now I want you to do the following: After you identify the thing you want to work on
- Write it down
- Tell someone about it (etiher a friend, or in this blog)
- Get support from others to help you achieve this goal

Noone said change was easy, in fact the reason why its so hard for us to make even small changes in our health is because if it were easy we would be doing it already. When it comes to our health it is slow small changes that make a differances and studies show that changing a habit takes time and effort. I encourage you to jump on the bandwagon in our Family Health Challenge and share what one powerful step you are going to take to invest in the health of your family. Think of it as an early christmas present to yourself and by the time x-mas rolls around, it will have already become a habit.