Lead Your Life

Leadership, Awareness, and Growth

Get off the “keep going” wagon June 20, 2017

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divine spark

When we lose our connection with what lights us up or we discover our actions misaligned with our intention, it’s time for a self-audit pause.    That sounds easy, but it is in these moments that our mind screams “Keep Going.”

Here’s a simple method to self-audit:

  • Get quiet: create time to sit with your breath; landing the inhale on your heart  and releasing thought with the exhale.
  • Connect: this can be prayer, loving kindness practice, or just heart-centered breathing.
  • Believe:  Your spirit is the house of your divine spark (aka: higher purpose), and your inner wisdom knows this spark intimately.  Beyond words, you hold the truth of your purpose.  Trust it.
  • Gut Check: Not sure?  Ask yourself this simple question:  “If my life aligned with my divine spark 80% of the time, I would lay my head down at night and say, ‘Yes!  This is inspired living for me.’”
  • Drop it: What is contrary in your life?  It takes a bit of courage to let the rest of it drop away, but it is so worth it.
  • Move with purpose: As you leave the space of audit and back into action of daily life, stay awake.  Make the shift.

Be committed to your own path.  We have only this one precious life.


Life laughs at the leashes we tether June 14, 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — laurajuarez @ 7:44 pm
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Laugh Out Loud At Yourself

We are in the midst of a relocation, and our moving company was supposed to arrive on Thursday of last week.  I handled the reschedule to Monday like a pro; especially given I had been sleeping on an air mattress for a week.

Friday evening arrives, and I begin my much anticipated weekend meditation training; the perfect way to spend my birthday.  As I drove home Friday after our evening session, blissed out and committed to noble silence, I noticed a flurry of messages on my phone.

The movers were now arriving the following day at 8AM.  Good Golly.  Forced to cancel my meditation weekend as my husband was still in Ohio, I spent my weekend  sorting, stacking, unpacking, folding, moving, placing, donating…. you get the point.

I had a moment of meltdown in which I left a desperate voicemail for my husband that never again in our life would we move with one person on the receiving end.  A twinge of bitterness sunk in as he was enjoying a golf trip with friends, and I found myself grousing around in a “woe is me,” and “why am I always on the work end of the stick?”

And then it struck me.  Yoga.  This is where our practice begins; off our mat when the temperature dial turns up.

These moments are a fabulous reminder that life laughs at the leashes we try to put on it.  Control is an illusion, and the real trick is to stay connected with flow and peace even when the waters are choppy and unpredictable.



Celebrate Not Knowing June 9, 2017

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The other day I was speaking with someone who expressed remorse they hadn’t discovered their purpose. They were unable to see anything unique about who they are and what they offer beyond the ordinary.

The human quandary, yes?  We all struggle with varying frequency of self-doubt.  In those moments, we can either dive headfirst into that vat of despair or consider truth:  that at the moment of our birth, we were placed on this planet for a divine reason.  A purpose that only we are wired to create.  Truly Extraordinary.

As it is my birthday today, I am reflecting on my endless gratitude for the opportunity of this lifetime.  While I may lack clarity on its total purpose, I can trust that it is blossoming before me.  All I have to do is notice.

Discovering and embracing our highest self & work is the journey of a lifetime.  And yet, our entire life is right now in this moment.  So for now, take a deep breath, honor the beauty of who you are, and celebrate that you are unlike any other human being ever created.   And be open to possibility.


Pure Pleasure May 28, 2017

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Today I walked my childhood neighborhood.  I allowed my legs to stretch to the streets that were most familiar to me; remembering my secret hiding spots, the corner I crashed my bike, and the field of many kickball games.  My warmest memories were the treasured spots of playing freely without rules, structure, or consideration of time.  I smiled as I honored those places where I twirled cartwheels, flew from swings, and roller skated at top speed hanging onto the backs of bikes.

I am not one to dwell in the past, but there are lessons snuggled in history; reminders of the captivation of play, the magic of unstructured summer days, the connection of deep friendships cultivated while skipping through yards.  Nothing linear, nothing timed, no desired outcome.  Just pure pleasure.

There is no shortage of opportunity to be productive, and the world will rain accolades on your achievements.  But don’t forget to move your body in all directions for no reason other than bliss.  Drive the curvy road to work, flip a cart-wheel while taking the dogs out, & skip the online trolling to play euchre with your kids.  Embrace Play.

For when we fast forward 10 years, we’ll remember those goofy moments.

And of course, go forth and live your purpose.  Take risks, try big, work hard.  Pursue productivity, results, achievements.  Step into discomfort, fail, and try again.  But don’t forget to invite play into your life, because without fun, joy, and sparkles, what is the point of achievement?



Quitters Sometimes Win April 21, 2017

This week, I said no to a business invitation & I resigned from an advisory group and two non-profit boards.   I also removed myself from several meetings that would truly not be upgraded by my presence.   I took all of these actions in preparation for a relocation; a functional decision based on geography.   It felt as if I had shed 10 energetic pounds, and through this release, I created lightness and relief.

Sometimes quitting is the greatest win.  Saying NO is the most powerful YES.

When we find ourselves overcommitted & running against the clock, struggling to carve out time for what lights us up, and/or living from our to-do list and calendar, it’s time to quit.

In the book The Life‑Changing Magic of Tidying Up, author Marie Kondo helps us declutter our surroundings by, one by one, evaluating each item we own against a simple question:  Does this bring me joy?

We can do the same with our time investments.  Our material possessions were financial investments we made at one point, and the question is, do they still serve us today?  If not, purge.  Our to-do list and calendar obligations are time investments that beg the same question.  Do they bring us joy?  Do they serve us in achieving what’s most important to us in our life?

If the answer is NO, then say NO.  And yes, you will disappoint someone, and you might miss out on something that is moderately pleasing, but these are minor risks to take.  Let it go.  Wiggle out of the tight container you’ve created and explore what more time can create in your life.  If you do, you will welcome more joy and freedom into your day.


In a split second February 1, 2017

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I attended a memorial today for a beautiful spirit who left this planet at age 49.  His three children, wife, siblings, in-laws, and father stood grieving as people flooded in to support and love.  There was a young man who sat in the pew throughout; the son of this family’s dear friend who had also passed away several years ago.  Both of cancer.  Both after long and sometimes grueling battles in which their physical form slowly shut down.

And here’s what I know through observation.  I know strength comes in all shapes & expressions.  I know that grief shies from the spotlight while gently turning it over to hope which emerges even in the darkest hour.  I know that people genuinely want to be of service to those hurting; that prayers matter; that baggage of who wronged who from years ago melts in the heat of life altering tragedy.

I know that we are blessed to have this moment and while we may not be mindful of it, the next.  I know that our challenges can knock us off our feet or remind us of who we are at our core – divine spirits wrapped in bones and muscles and skin.  I know that blessings deserve to be counted every day, and that this practice is our greatest therapy.

I know that this lifetime is temporary, and it deserves our best shot.  That we deserve to live our fullest expression of God’s intention for us, and that we are capable of thriving with grace in circumstances more trying than we believed possible.  I know that we are rooted in beauty and powerful beyond measure.  I know we can trust God’s hand, and while we may not understand, we can rest softly in the truth of Spirit.


Invent Adventure January 21, 2017

Filed under: thoughts become things,Uncategorized — laurajuarez @ 12:47 pm
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I’ve come to realize that I’ve taken on, built in, said YES to so much in my life that finding space between the action required to support these responsibilities is a challenge.  And, I picked and love (most of the time) it all.  I chose to lead a manufacturing company, to give birth to a yoga business, to buy a second studio, to have children, to join boards, to get married, to bring home the second dog…  (This list could go on but you get my point).

Each of those endeavors hold varying degrees of meaning to my heart & spirit, but they all are positive imprints in my life.  And, when you string them together across a day, a week, a month, and a year; I am not different than you – the sheer busyness can be dizzying.  God Forbid an unexpected blip hits your radar.  How does one materialize the time to care for a child home from school or a leak in the basement?

So, we either fall prey to an undercurrent of stress or we learn, through disciplined self-teaching, to ebb and flow, to let go, to lower expectations, to go easy, and to breathe our way back to center.  And…  even then something is missing.

Adventure.  Adventure is different to each of us.  Helen Keller said:

“Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature nor do the children of man as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.” Helen Keller 1880-1968

For me, adventure is new.  It is a hike on an unchartered path or a trip to an unexplored part of the planet.  It is swinging from a rope with Maya, dancing with my husband in the kitchen, playing basketball with Jack.  It is learning something new, taking a risk in a conversation, walking over the log instead of the bridge.  It feels like your brain and spirit waking up at the same time your lips curl up in the corners.

Adventure is waiting for you.  She is singing her mermaid song to lure you in.  And you will only notice her if you practice the art of the pause in your life.  Looking up from your task list and device to wonder what that distant sound is and then extending your pause to explore.  Following your instinct and curiosity.

My productivity & quality skyrockets when my life is infused with adventure.  And when my life gets too linear and task oriented, my output becomes less creative and inspired.  I get it all done, but that is not my measure of work well accomplished.

Seek adventure.  Thrill your spirit.  Lighten your heart.  Stimulate your mind.  Drive a new way to work, bicycle to the store, skip across the street, take the trip.  It matters.  Where will you seek adventure today?