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Grandma’s Purse

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Empowerment
Grandma’s Purse

Grandma’s Purse

“Grandma’s Purse” is an excerpt from Being Here…Too, Short Stories of Modern Day Enlightenment, Ariel and Shya Kane

Listen to this chapter from the audiobook version of Being Here…Too

I grew up in Gresham, Oregon. At the time, it was a sleepy farming community where the children had summer jobs picking berries and went for ice cream floats at Rexall Drugstore with the money they earned. Our house was a two-story white structure on the edge of the woods with a separate garage and a little playhouse that was perfect for my sisters, Cathy and Mary, and me.

On the top floor of our house, under the eaves off Cathy’s bedroom, was an attic space where my folks stored Christmas decorations, luggage, and things that were out of season. One of the treasures in the attic was my Grandmother’s purse.

Ila May Powell, my mother’s mother, had died a year before I was born. She was born in 1906 and lived much of her life near Portland, Oregon, until her death in 1957. After she and my Grandpa, Larry Halif Cermack, eloped, she went on to have eight kids. My mom was the eldest.

One day when I was young, my sisters and I were playing in the attic when we came across Grandma’s purse. It was black with a single strap and a simple gold clasp at the top. We brought it out to Cathy’s bedroom, climbed up on her bed, sat cross-legged facing each other and carefully removed the contents, one piece at a time. Inside was a comb, a crochet hook, a clean white hanky with tatted lace that Grandma had made herself, a coin purse with a few coins, a pencil, and a small, handwritten, shopping list: Butter, eggs, coffee, milk.

Being Here…Too, Short Stories of Modern Day EnlightenmentWe marveled at the writing. It was wonderful to see something Grandma had held in her hands that she’d actually written. All these years later I remember that list. And I also remember something else. Grandma had things left to do on the day that she died. I’ve always been touched by that fact. She had a full life. She did many things. And yet apparently she still had things left to be done. That she didn’t do them didn’t make her life incomplete and she didn’t fail in any way. Somehow the fact that she still had a grocery list when she died allows me to be relaxed about my desire to get things finished or over with.

It’s so easy during our lives to press to get everything done. Most people feel pressured to complete everything on their list by the end of the day. Many feel that they have failed if there are tasks yet to be accomplished, goals yet to be achieved. But I’ve come to realize that I am likely to always have a list. It’s a component of being alive. So at the end of each day, I can put it away and let myself be. If I’m taking a day off or going on vacation, I can let go of that list. It will still be there when I return. “Finishing” something, completing my list of “to dos,” crossing that finish line is not a final destination. It’s simply a part of daily living – a part of living my life.

This is an excerpt from Being Here…Too, now available on Amazon and everywhere books are sold.

Since 1987, internationally acclaimed authors, seminar leaders, podcast/radio show hosts and business consultants Ariel and Shya Kane have acted as guides, leading people through the swamp of the mind into the clarity and brilliance of the moment. Find out more about the Kanes, their seminars in NYC, Germany and Costa Rica, the Say YES to Your Life! Meetups their work has inspired, their Being Here podcast or join their email newsletter. Also get information about their award-winning books. Their newest book, Being Here…Too, is available on Amazon.comBarnesandNoble.com and everywhere books are sold.

Books by Ariel & Shya Kane

Grandma’s Pocketbook by Ariel Kane

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7th Wave
Grandma’s Pocketbook by Ariel Kane

pink peony

Grandma’s Pocketbook
by Ariel Kane

I grew up in Gresham, Oregon, which at the time was a rather sleepy farming community where the children picked berries as a summer job and went to Rexall Drug store for ice cream floats with the money they earned. Our house was a two story white structure on the edge of the woods with a separate garage and a little playhouse that was perfect for my sisters and me.

On the top floor of our house, off my sister Cathy’s bedroom, under the eaves was an attic space where my folks stored Christmas decorations, luggage and things that were out of season. One of the treasures that was kept in the attic was my Grandmother’s purse. Grandma, my mother’s mother, had died long before I was born. Ila May Powell was born in 1906 and lived much of her life near Portland, Oregon until her death in 1957. She had met my Grandpa, Larry Halif Cermack, and after they eloped she eventually went on to have 8 Kids – my mom being the oldest.

One day when I was young, I remember that my sisters and I were playing in the attic and we came across Grandma’s pocketbook. It was black with a single strap and had a simple gold clasp at the top. We carried it out to Cathy’s bedroom, climbed up on her bed, sat cross-legged facing each other and we carefully removed the contents one piece at a time. Inside was a comb, a crochet hook, a clean white hanky with tatted lace that she had made herself, a coin purse with a few coins, a pencil and a small, handwritten, shopping list: Butter, eggs, coffee, milk.

Gingerly we removed the list and marveled at the writing thereon. It was wonderful to see something Grandma had held in her hand that she had actually written. All these years later I remember that list. And I also remember something else: Grandma had things left to do on the day that she had died. I have always been touched by that fact in ways that are hard to describe. She had a full life. She did many things. And yet she apparently had things left to be done. The reality that she didn’t do these things didn’t make her life incomplete, nor did she fail in any way. Somehow the fact that she still had a grocery list on the day that she died has allowed me to be relaxed about the desire to get things finished or over with.

It is so easy during our lives to press to get everything done. Most people feel pressured to complete everything on their list by end of day. Many feel that they have failed if there are tasks yet to be accomplished, goals yet to be achieved. But for me, I have come to realize that no matter what my age, no matter what my health, no matter what the circumstances, I am likely to always have a list. It is a component to being alive. So at the end of each day, I can put away my list and let myself be. If I am taking a day off or going on vacation, I can let go of that list, for it will be there when I return. “Finishing” something, completing my list of “to dos,” crossing that finish line is not a final destination. Having a list of projects and “to dos” is simply a part of living life.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Since 1987, internationally acclaimed authors, seminar leaders, radio show hosts and business consultants Ariel and Shya Kane have acted as guides, leading people through the swamp of the mind into the clarity and brilliance of the moment. Find out more about the Kanes, their seminars in NYC, in the UK, Germany and Costa Rica, the Say YES to Your Life! Meetups their work has inspired, their Being Here radio show or join their email newsletter. Also get information about their four award-winning books. Their newest book, Practical Enlightenment, is now available on Amazon.com.

How Often Do You Find Yourself Running Out of Time Part 2

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How Often Do You Find Yourself Running Out of Time Part 2

time2

For many, it seems that there’s just never enough time in the day to get everything done. Are you one of them?

Did You Take the Time Management Quiz in Part 1? (YOU NEED TO PUT IN THE RIGHT LINK)
What was your score? What elements of time management do you need to work on? Here are the top five with suggestions on how to master them.

1. Goal Setting (Questions 6, 10, 14, 15)
To start managing time effectively, you need to set goals. When you know where you’re going, you can then figure out what exactly needs to be done, in what order. Without proper goal setting, you’ll fritter your time away on a confusion of conflicting priorities. Yes, it does take time and effort initially. Isn’t it worth it if it gets you on the right track and not get sidetracked?

2. Prioritization (Questions 1, 4, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15)
Most people have a “to-do” list of some sort. The problem with many of these lists is they are just a collection of things that need to get done. There is no rhyme or reason to the list and you go from one task to another.  Furthermore you may be working on the wrong things – the in the face urgent vs. the strategic important. So how do you work on To Do List tasks – top down, bottom up, easiest to hardest?

 3. Managing Interruptions (Questions 5, 9, 11, 12)
Having a plan and knowing how to prioritize it is one thing. The next issue is knowing what to do to minimize the interruptions you face during your day. As a manager you get phone calls, information requests, questions from employees, and a whole host of events that crop up unexpectedly. Some do need to be dealt with immediately, but others need to be managed to minimize your interrupted time.

 4. Procrastination (Questions 2, 10, 12)
“I’ll get to it later” has led to the downfall of many a good manager. After too many “laters”, the work piles up so high that any task seems insurmountable. Procrastination is as tempting as it is deadly. The best way to beat it is to recognize that you do indeed do it. Then you need to figure out why. Perhaps you are afraid of failing? (And some people are actually afraid of success!) 

 5. Scheduling (Questions 3, 7, 12)
Much of time management comes down to effective scheduling of your time. When you know what your goals and priorities are, you then need to know how to go about creating a schedule that keeps you on track, and protects you from stress. You have to create a schedule that reflects your priorities and well as supports your personal goals plus leave room for the unexpected. Control your time and keep your life in balance by reading.

Smart Moves Tip
Time management is an essential skill that helps you keep your work under control and keeps stress to a minimum. Listen to Dana Phillips on The Business Edge (http://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/68782/taking-the-pain-out-of-time-management/55117)  and get great tip, tools and techniques to “Take the Pain Out of Time Management!”

 

Marcia Zidle, the smart moves executive coach and speaker, is host of The Business Edge  (http://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2186/the-business-edge) on the Voice America Business Network. The show features the Smart Growth System providing small to medium sized businesses the proper foundation for expansion: a Growth Agenda that becomes their roadmap, a Growth Engine that attracts and engages the best talent and Growth Leaders that make it happen. Marcia, the CEO of Leaders At All Levels, (http://www.leadersatalllevels.com/) brings street smarts to help businesses get on the right track and not get sidetracked on their path to higher performance and profitability.

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