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Showing posts from February, 2012

Guest Corner: My Perfectly Un/Balanced Life


It is something I have strived to achieve for many years.  Someone once advised me to imagine my life as divided into four parts: my hobbies, my work, my relationship and my friends.  She said that I should always put equal amounts of time into each of these categories in order to reach my highest level of happiness and personal fulfillment.  In theory the idea makes a lot of sense. Who wouldn't want to feel full in each of these areas?

The Power of the Collective

A wife. A daughter. A sister. An aunt. An athlete. On January 19 the world lost Sarah Burke to an injury from a freak accident practicing the sport she loved – freeskiing.

Struck by the unexpected loss of a wonderfully talented woman loved by many, Canadians and others around the world rallied unsolicited to raise the funds required to pay her medical expenses.  To date not only have those expenses been covered, but people’s generosity has ensured there are funds to “establish a foundation to honor Sarah's legacy and promote the ideals she valued and embodied.”

What a Twit!

Over the past three years that I’ve been on Twitter, I’ve “met” tons of interesting people around the world who are doing cool things, have interesting ideas, are funny and sometimes/often even have similar interests to mine.
Twitter allows you to “favourite” tweets, bookmarking them for easy future reference.  Since many of my closest friends aren’t on Twitter, I wanted to take this opportunity to share some of my favourites - favourites because they are insightful, funny, hopeful or all of the above. Hopefully they make you take pause, laugh, or reflect.
There is a Top 5 (in no particular order), then some of my other faces. Enjoy!

Regretful about Regrets

My friend Fiona posted a link to a brilliant article on regrets of the dying.  It focuses on the observations of a palliative nurse in Australia who has tended to many people in their last days.

The nurse notes that the top five regrets of those near death are: 1. Living a life according to the expectations of others 2. Working too hard 3. Not expressing their true feelings 4. Losing touch with friends 5. Not allowing themselves to be happier

Stereotype Me Not

Stereotypes are devices for saving a biased person the trouble of learning.” Don’t judge a book by its cover.  These words easily roll off our tongue, mine included, but it seems like so many things, it is easier said than done.
As I sit at the local coffee shop, embarrassedly to my surprise, the middle aged Caucasian woman next to me speaks with a Jamaican accent.  I am reminded of the assumptions we can make about people, however innocuous, based on outward cues.


What better day to discuss passion than Valentine’s Day.  Not that related to romantic love or lust for a partner, but that which we feel for the other loves in our life.
Many would say I wear my passions on my sleeve. At the top of the list are travel, cycling, photography and volunteering. (In the interest of full disclosure, I will admit to a passion for sweets too – cupcakes in particular, though most anything laced with sugar will do.) Any experience that combines those in some way is the ultimate package. I will attempt to cite a few briefly here.

The Haunted Toolshed

When I was in elementary school there was what appeared to be an abandoned toolshed on the property.  At recess we would peer into the cobweb-laced windows and exchange stories about its haunting. I would imagine the space when it was in active use and what the undertaker would have looked like when he was alive (and not busy haunting the place).

Savour the Day

I read with interest an article in the Toronto Star about a woman, Sandra Burton, who just gave birth to twins.  Though this is great news in and of itself, what makes this story especially unique is that this new mother is a quadriplegic – injured in a freak accident 20 years ago that changed her life forever.

Less is More

In October 2010 I was in Peru – a trip full of meaningful moments and encounters, many of which could not have been predicted.  For several days we stayed at a local family’s home in the Lake Titicaca area - a remote village with no running water or electricity.  Our hosts went out of their way to ensure our stay was comfortable, that we felt welcome, and were well fed.  We lacked for nothing despite the simplicity of our accommodations.

"No one is listening…

...until you fart." - Author Unknown  At times it can really feel that way, most would agree.  I am compelled to publish this post given the conversation I am witnessing between two colleagues - one apparently being considered for a promotion. It could be personality, bravado, nerves or a combination thereof, but the "interviewee" keeps talking over her superior...Breathe.