Turning Mountains into Mole Hills

“The attitude that every day is a gift helps to turn the mountains into mole hills that this old boy can climb!

– Doug Haussler


Giving thanks and expressing gratitude is the best way I know to turn mountains into mole hills.

My friend Doug said the attitude that every day is a gift helps to turn the mountains into mole hills that this old boy can climb!

Every day is a gift!  But so often we forget to say ‘Thank You!’ Thank you for the day and thank you to each other for things that are done for us.  A couple of years ago, Harvard Gazette published an article about The Power of Thanks.  The article describes an experiment done at Harvard Business School. The experiment was conducted by Professor Francesca Gino of Harvard Business School and Professor Adam Grant of The Wharton School of Business.

“Receiving expressions of gratitude makes us feel a heightened sense of self-worth, and that in turn triggers other helpful behaviors toward both the person we are helping and other people, too,” Gino said. She described the scope of the “gratitude effect” as “the most surprising part” of her research.”
The work behind her book, she said, “really makes me think more carefully every time I am the one expressing gratitude to others. I don’t want to miss opportunities. … I learned from my own research and now try to say ‘thank you’ much more often.”
So not only keeping an attitude of gratitude, but also expression gratitude makes a difference.  So Doug, let me say Thank You to you right now, for your wonderful line about ‘making mountains into mole hills’, but much more importantly, Thank You for being a good friend for all these years.
I’ll close with a lovely short video clip about the power of saying thank you.

Please let me know who you’ve thanked today.

And as always thank you for taking the time to visit, I appreciate it.

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Here’s to aging with adventure!

“It happens fast for some people and slow for some, accidents or gravity, but we all end up mutilated. Most women know this feeling of being more and more invisible everyday.”

– Chuck Palahniuk


I have to admit, it always surprises me a bit when people comment on my blog, or when people who know me and read my blog, stop me on the street to comment. I guess sitting here typing feels a bit like I’m in a vacuum, and then getting the affirmation that there are actually people out there reading this – well it’s a bit startling.

At any rate, my last post on aging seemed to have resonated with quite a few people, so I decided to continue my research.  And I was glad I did, because I came upon this wonderfully inspirational talk by Jane Fonda, entitled Life’s Third Act.  In this talk, Ms. Fonda uses the analogy of life as a staircase:

“I have come to find that a more appropriate metaphor for aging is a staircase – the upward ascension of the human spirit, bringing us into wisdom, wholeness and authenticity.  Age not at all as pathology; age as potential.”

I love that – Age not as pathology, but as potential.  
That was what I heard from the women and men who commented on my last post, either in person or on the site. That people, as they are aging, are tending toward emabracing life even more.

I also loved her reference to neuroplasticity:

“Perhaps the central purpose of the third actis to go back and to try, if appropriate,to change our relationship to the past. It turns out that cognitive research shows when we are able to do this, it manifests neurologically – neural pathways are created in the brain. You see, if you have, over time, reacted negatively to past events and people, neural pathways are laid down by chemical and electrical signals that are sent through the brain. And over time, these neural pathways become hardwired, they become the norm – even if it’s bad for us because it causes us stress and anxiety.

If however, we can go back and alter our relationship, re-vision our relationship to past people and events, neural pathways can change. And if we can maintain the more positive feelings about the past, that becomes the new norm. It’s like resetting a thermostat. It’s not having experiences that make us wise, it’s reflecting on the experiences that we’ve had that makes us wise – and that helps us become whole, brings wisdom and authenticity. It helps us become what we might have been.”

I circle back now to Chuck Palahniuk’s quote: Most women know this feeling of being more and more invisible everyday. This feeling is deeply explored in my book: A Woman’s Guite to Transformation- perhaps it’s central theme.  So that quote resonates deeply for me.  But if as we age, we can redefine ourselves and our relationships, imagine the liberation!

“Women start off whole, don’t we? We are the subjects of our own lives. But very often, many, if not most of us, when we hit puberty, we start worrying about fitting in and being popular. And we become the subjects and objects of other people’s lives. But now, in our third acts, it may be possible for us to circle back to where we started and know it for the first time. And if we can do that, it will not just be for ourselves. Older women are the largest demographic in the world. If we can go back and redefine ourselves and become whole, this will create a cultural shift in the world, and it will give an example to younger generations so that they can reconceive their own lifespan.”

So this reclaiming of self, this changing of our relationship to the past, can have a wider impact than simply rewiring our own brain, it can perhaps create a cultural shift in the world!  Wow.  How cool is that!

So to quote my old high school friend Doug Haussler: Here’s to aging with adventure!

 

 

I hope you enjoy Jane Fonda’s Ted Talk, especially for those women out there over 50. Such a hopefull message!

And as always thank you for taking the time to visit, I appreciate it.