Lizzy Wisdom: What one dog taught me about life…

Lizzy is a rescue dog. She was a neglected dog, chained to a tree most of her life. While her owners agreed to release her, the shelter who wanted to take her in didn’t have room. So the shelter looked to find her a new home, and all the while she remained chained to that tree in the back yard, neglected of medical care and attention, with a stream bed for her water bowl.

When the shelter took her off that chain, which she had known for 4 years of her life, she didn’t know what to do. She was lost and scared. She was unsure of herself, how to behave, or how to ask for food. Lizzy certainly had no experience interacting with things like a hotel, a car ride, an elevator, or a parking lot for that matter, all stuff she had to endure her first two days of freedom as she made her way to her new home. That girl had been in the back woods her whole life, all 4 years. Her view limited by what she could see from the end of her chain. Her happiness limited by what she could experience from the end of that line, and her love limited by what her owners would dish out.

Even though Lizzy was scared, anxious, fearful, worried, and confused, even though she didn’t know where she was going, and while she was wondering what was happening to her world, she was still willing to re-adjust. Dogs have an amazing ability to do this…to be present to what is happening, let go of the past, and to look forward to what is possible from the new situation. They constantly re-adjust.

Amazingly, Lizzy, continues to adjust. She’s looking around herself for answers. She looks to us, her owners, and to her surroundings for new information. She also looks to our other dog, Luke, for guidance on how to behave and how to get love. And she just continues blossom the more she learns.

How many of you have ever felt like Lizzy?

I know I have. Confused, worried, fearful…not knowing what was happening to my world. Formerly confined to the limits of my (mental and social) chain, and not sure what to do when that chain was lifted unexpectedly. Two specific instances come to mind. When I was laid off from a job I thought I’d have for a long time, where I loved the people I worked with and what I was doing. And when I got divorced, from the marriage I thought I was supposed to have forever – because wasn’t that what you did once you got married?

I realize now that I had “chained” myself to an idea or ideal of what life was supposed to be, how it was supposed to play out, and just what I’m suppose to do with it. I’ve seen my life, only from the confines of that mental “chain”, thinking that my life was supposed to be that “Husband, Dog, 1.5 children, house with white picket fence” ideal. Even though that idea wasn’t mine, it’s what I have been working to live. My life defined by what I saw from a chain…an attachment to the ideal I thought I was supposed to have.

And just like Lizzy…I felt frustrated, nervous, fearful, and quite unsure of myself.

But unlike Lizzy who adapted beautifully to her new life…I was also angry…that someone had swiped this view from me. Jeopardized it. Risked it. Eliminated it. And wouldn’t give it back! And I wouldn’t let it go…even though somewhere deep I knew it wasn’t the life I wanted, I was angry and didn’t want to let it go.

I let that anger stop me from adapting…instead I continued to get increasingly angry, then sad, then just plain catatonic. I couldn’t function any longer. And since I couldn’t function, my situation just got worse and worse and worse. My house was compromised, my relationship was compromised, but most of all, my emotional health was compromised. All because I continued to look at what I had lost, an ideal I didn’t want in the first place, instead of looking at my new-found freedom and rejoicing, and discovering all the new things I wanted to explore anew.

I was stubborn…unwilling to look at other options or the new possibilities that lay before me. And because I was stubborn, I missed out. I missed all the opportunities that people offered, and jobs that were offered. And eventually, people stopped offering…their jobs and their support. Friends abandoned me. Not because they didn’t care, but because they lost hope for me. They didn’t know what else to do.

When I was finally willing to abandon my own frustrations, look beyond the anger and see what was in front of me, the cloud lifted. I realized that I had an amazing opportunity to start fresh, make new choices, and set off on another amazing adventure. Once I embraced that, I flourished, and continue to do so.

I get reminded, once again, that when something ends, it is something to celebrate, not fear. Endings come because that route no longer serves me. It no longer fits the grand plan that is my life. Loss is only a sign that someone (God, the universe, a higher power – call it what you will) is intervening on my behalf, to steer me in a direction that will fit me better and take me much further than I imagined possible.

What I try to keep in mind…
*Don’t let your view from your chain – keep you limited.
*Don’t let your familiarity with that chain, keep you from enjoying what’s coming.
*Don’t let your fear of change – keep you from adapting to your new situation.
*You’ve been freed…Take advantage of it.


One small thought

Take just one small negative thought and replace it with a positive thought. How would it change the way you experienced your day today?

Directions for Life

The following is a re-post, but I thought it would be worth repeating.


A few days ago I bought a new hair serum.  Before I used it, I decided to actually read the directions on the bottle.  Here is how the instructions read…

Directions:  After shampooing and conditioning, apply generously to scalp and rub.  Comb through hair and let set for 5 minutes.  Rinse thoroughly with water.

Many times in my life I have often wished I had such clear directions for life.  After my own life journeys and experiences, I imagine the directions for life would read like this…

DIRECTIONS:  After identifying what you want and need, apply liberal doses of faith.  Combine with plenty of self-care and let set.  Rinse thoroughly with forgiveness.  Results visible immediately.”

© Copyright 2011, Finding Wanna and Cecilia Deal.  All rights reserved.

Focus in Your Job Search and Business


It is a matter of focus!

I can not remember where I heard that phrase, but it seemed brilliant at the time. And it is still completely relevant. Focus is the one of the most important things you can do to get your job search or your business hopping.

I have plenty of clients tell me they are unmotivated and can not seem to get things done. They say they just do not have the will power or tenacity to get things done. Then they complain that nothing they “do” in their job search or in their business is producing results.

Hog Wash! It has nothing to do with “will power” or “tenacity” and nothing to do with your capabilities or ability to take action.

It has everything to do FOCUS.

Look…focus gives you motivation, dedication, will power, tenacity, and guts. It generates ideas and connections. After my clients get focused, they take off like a shot and have more motivation than they know what to do with. What a great problem to have.

Why does focus work? It works because you finally know where you are going, what road to take, how to communicate, and what decision to make. You know when to say YES and when to say NO.

Without focus, I doubt I could write this article or get my point across. If you are a job seeker or an entrepreneur without focus, it is difficult to communicate with potential employers or your customers. You find you can not complete your resume or your web-site material. And forget trying to search for a job or your customers…you get lost in search engine limbo forever, without focus.

I will let you in on a little secret. Your potential employers and your customers KNOW you have no focus when you interview or talk with them. It’s amazing. They pick up on it like a sixth sense, even if they can’t explain why. They walk away dazed, confused, without any sense of why they talked with you in the first place, or they forget you the moment you walk out the door. Not good, if you want them to actually hire you or buy your product or services. As a job seeker or an entrepreneur you want to leave a lasting impression, and not that one!

So sit down and figure out your focus. Ask yourself what you want to do or offer. Take a bit of time to do some research about what potential employers or your customers are looking for. Then find a focus and communicate that to them, in a way that shows them you have exactly what they need.

It will have your potential employers or customers flocking to you. And they will remember you, in a good way. And whether they need you now or weeks down the road, you will be the first person that comes to mind. Because what they need IS YOU, your talents, your services, your skills and your strength.

Now, go get ’em!

Happy Hunting!

Success In A Slumping Economy

Why is it…when someone says the economy is slowing, everyone freaks out.  Speculation runs rampant about just how horrible business will be, how little we will gain, and how we should all be scared.  When did we start allowing our success to be defined by the state of the economy?  Hog wash!  This line of thinking has no legs to stand on.


Let us look at the facts.  Are people spending less?  Maybe.  Are housing prices going down?  Yes, that may be truth for a lot of folks now.  Are mortgages harder to get now?  Maybe.  Are gas prices climbing?  Yes.  Those may be the current facts.  But how and when did we start defining these facts as proof that we could not succeed?  That we could no longer have what we want or need?  Who said?


Do not let anyone tell you that a slumping economy is proof that you can not have, do or be anything you want.  Do not let the economy dictate your success.  Success and economy are two different animals.  Define them separately and keep it that way.

Let me share another set of facts.  People, businesses and folks just like you are still succeeding in “today’s economy”.  In fact, some people are thriving in it.   I know what you’re thinking.  The only people succeeding are those oil companies or some other vulture sucking the life out of us poor retched old souls who just need to get by.  Sorry, but no.  The people who are succeeding are real people with real dreams who are making it, right NOW!


In my life, I have never been out of work more than three months, unless of course I chose to do so.  On September 11th, 2001 we witnessed the fall of the twin towers and I witnessed my first lay off.  Everyone I talked with speculated that I would be out of work for a year.   You know, with the slow down in the IT industry and everything, no one was hiring…right?


Those who believed it were still out of work a year later.  Me…I went back to work in just 3 short months using the principles I teach in the Recipe for Success class.


Here’s how I spent my time off of work.  The first month I cried myself to sleep, felt sorry for myself and wondered why me.  The second month I kicked myself in the rear, started using my own proven process, and took a real vacation.  By month 3 I was working again, rested and doing something I loved.  Tada!

Success in a slumping economy is not impossible.  It can take some inventive thinking and innovative action, but it is not hard.  You can find success, no matter what’s going on around you.  I know, I have done it, over and over and over again.  It was simple, easy and uncomplicated.  If you want to know how, look me up or check out my class on a Recipe for Success.  If nothing else, do just one thing for me…define success for yourself.  And don’t let anyone get in your way.


Copyright © 2008 Cecilia Deal.  All Rights Reserved.


What I’m passionate about is having choices.  A choice about what you do with your body, your spirit, your mind, your soul and your life.  Choices on how you create your career, direct your business, build relationship, worship (shoes, cars, or religion), communicate, love, create family, and live YOUR life.

What I know about choice is this…you have to be aware to see it.  You have to know that there is a choice to make.  AND you have to know what you want and what you stand for to have the ability to decide which choice is best for you.  You have to know what is important to you, what you hold valuable, the standards you live by, how you operate and what makes you tick.  Otherwise, it’s all up to chance.  I don’t know about you, but I do not want to leave that much of my life up to chance.

How do you get answers about what you want when you can’t even think straight?  When you are bombarded by opinion, advice, and what “others” think is best for you?  When you get advice, take a class, or read a book, but still leave wondering how the recommendations apply to your own life?  How are you suppose to discover what you want and the best decisions for you?

You stop!  You stop and listen.  You take breathing room and then you gently, lovingly embark on the discovery of what you want.  You get connected to your own personal “wanna-meter”(of-course this is a technical term).  That internal meter that tells you how to identify what you want and what is important to you.  This is the work I do with my clients, breathing room, listening, and getting connected to that personal “wanna-meter”.  Because, if you aren’t listening to yourself, then how can you connect to what you want or make choices that are right for you?

What are you choosing today?  Will you live in choice or will you leave your life up to chance?  Will you swim around in advice or start making decisions for yourself?  Are you ready to KNOW what YOU want? Because it is a choice!

Are You Stalling

When was the last time you got so fired up you were ready to take on anything?  Or you got so bored with being stalled, you were ready to start, no matter what it took?  And somewhere you found confidence, courage, and determination.
As an entrepreneur, I know how critical it is to let ideas and concepts ripen.  And I’m always excited when I know the moment it is time to take action.  What is sometimes difficult is identifying when I’m stalling.
So let’s think about this for a moment.  How do you identify when your idea and concepts are still ripening?  For me I feel a certain “not quite ready” in my gut and if I try to take action, it is like pushing against a brick wall.
And how do you know when to take action?  In my world, I feel like I’m ready to take on the world and I can’t help but find myself moving.  My body and my mind scream…LET’S GO!
Then, how do you know you are stalling?  Well,  I tell you, I don’t always recognize it when it happens.  But when I do, it usually feels like my body is aching to move, but my mind keeps telling me “I don’t want to” (in a very whinny voice).
Luckily, over the years I’ve gotten better and quicker at realizing it and found a few things that help me get moving.  I might play energizing music, play with my dogs, or call a really motivating friend.  And when I need the big guns, I call my coach.
So…where are you now?  Are you ready to take action, still letting ideas ripen?  Or are you just stalling, afraid to take action, afraid to move?  How will you know you are ready?  How do you  know it’s time to stop taking stalk and start taking action?  I’d really like to know.  E-mail me at and I’ll post the answers on my next e-mail.

-Cecilia Deal, CPCC
Certified Professional Co-Active Coach

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