Dare boldly

A blog by Louise Gallagher


Don’t think. Just do.

Change is here to stay was a favourite saying of one of my very first bosses. You can either go with it, or fight against it, but you can’t resist it, he said.

This morning, as I awoke, my mind leapt to the place of resistance. “Oh, just lie here in bed, Louise,” the critter hissed. “You’ve had two days of morning movement meditation. Give it a break. Just slumber awhile longer.”

Now, I know me. Once I awaken, there’s no going back to sleep. But, even though I got up, the critter kept trying to convince me to forgo my movement meditation. “You don’t need it,” it insisted. “You’re too tired. It’s not good for you. Why don’t you just sit down and forget about it.”

Fortunately, my loving self stepped up to the abyss of giving in and gently drew me away from the edge.

“Don’t think. Just do.” she whispered. “Drown the critters voice in music. Listen to your body calling you to flow into gentle movement. Don’t think. Just do.”

I heard the wisdom of her voice, turned up the music and began to move.

Change isn’t about thinking my way into doing. It’s about moving through my resistance to change, to move into the doing of whatever the something different is that I’ve identified as necessary to create the more, the better, the most of what I want in my life.

As the days and months and years pass, my body has aged with time. It has lost some of its flexibility, its natural fluidness that allows my joints and muscles to move without pain.

I want to change my status quo. I desire to move from being resigned to time’s impact on my body to a place where I am moving with time to create a more fluid and graceful way of being.

It requires change — in attitude. In belief. In awareness. It does not require more thinking about what I need to do. It requires action.

There is an art and a science to change.

For me, the art is in gracefully embracing my awareness that to live a grace-filled life, all parts of my being need to be part of my doing.

The science is in recognizing and acknowledging that my resistance is not based on a rational ‘knowing’. Believe me, I know I need to stay active. Get moving.

But my knowing gets drowned out by the critters insistence it knows best. “What!” the critter exclaims. “You deserve to just lie back and relax. You’ve done enough running, walking, moving to last a lifetime! Give yourself a break.”

The critter doesn’t ask questions. He only makes statements that are posed as fact when really, they’re based on nothing more than my fear (his aversion) to change.

My loving self knows, part of living with grace is to flow with time and its inevitable changes. It knowing that I need to fall into love with doing what is necessary to fill myself with grace. And grace comes when I take loving care of this body that is my vehicle and my container for my life.

I gave into the critter’s insistence I didn’t need to take action and fell out of the habit of taking care of my body and self.

I am shifting from fear to desire, to knowledge to actions that honour and celebrate this amazing container that not only supports every movement, thought and breath I take, but also has the capacity to create ease and grace with every breath.

I woke up and moved this morning. The benefits are many. The joy profound.

This morning I listened to my loving self as she whispered. Don’t think. Just do.

I took action.




Change Management: It’s about doing things differently.

Have you ever done something a different way and thought, “Why didn’t I do it that way before?” or “Why didn’t I think of that sooner.”

Anyone who knows me well knows I love to dance. Really love to dance. Like dancing where definitely I do it like no one is watching because dancing moves me, it stirs my heart and digs deep into the soul of who I am.

On Saturday, C.C. and I went to our good friend Jane’s Birthday Party and I danced.

Full disclosure: my beloved had cautioned me about dancing. The weekend before I wound up in the Emergency room because of my back.

“You be careful,” he cautioned me.

But, when the music starts playing, I truly cannot help myself! I have to dance. Especially when Jane’s delightful daughter CJ asks the band to play as their first song, Proud Mary.

It is my daughters’ and my ‘anthem song’.

We even have a ‘routine’ for it — at least for the first few slow bars. And then… we break loose.

On Saturday, my youngest daughter and I stepped onto the dance floor, and broke loose.

I stayed conscious of my back, but I definitely moved my body. Seated in the back at our table, I could see my beloved shaking his head in loving wonderment at how I could so totally lose myself to the music and forget all about my back. I smiled and waved at him and spun and moved and gave myself over to the music.

To be fair, I did not leap or cavort. I just spun and moved, conscious of my back’s need to feel secure while giving it the freedom to simply feel fluid again.

And here’s the surprising thing. It felt better!

Yup. Movement helped. Which makes sense. I’d been holding my body so still and careful for many days, the stiffness had devolved from my back being out of whack to my lack of free-flowing movement causing my body to feel as though my back was still out of commission.

It wasn’t. Perhaps if I’d been listening I would have heard it saying… Move it baby. Move it.

I finally did.

What a relief.

Which is where the ‘doing something different and wondering why I hadn’t thought of it before comes in.’

Every morning before I write, I meditate. I let my practice slip for the past few months but had moved back into ‘time to begin again’, and was doing it.

What I hadn’t yet embraced was the need to also create space for movement, stretching, exercise.

Yesterday morning, as I awoke and prepared to meditate my mind awoke too. “Hey!”, it said. Why don’t you meditate and dance at the same time?”

I heard the question rising from within and thought, “Hmmm. Why don’t I?”

So I did.

What a gift!

I moved around my hotel room (albeit carefully due to not a lot of room – but enough) and stretched and let my body flow with the music as I reached and bent and leaned into the space around me.

And then I sat down to write.

My body thanked me. My mind thanked me. My being thanked me.

All because I chose to do something differently.

We all resist change. It is our human nature.

I have been resisting the change of letting inertia hold me to my chair, the couch, the bed, the doing nothingness of sitting around without intent.

Yesterday, I changed my position.

In the parlance of the Prosci (that’s said – Pro Sceye — as in Sci-ence) Change Management Course I’m taking, I was applying the ADKAR model to my morning change-up:  Awareness. Desire. Knowledge. Ability. Reinforcement.

This morning, I stepped reinforced my commitment to change and practiced my Morning Meditation Movement.

Definitely feeling the movement in my back and body. Definitely feeling in the flow of my day!

I like it! I FEEL Good!




Change Management: It begins with what I don’t know

This is the view from my hotel window for the next three days.

I am awestruck.

I am in Banff for a Change Management course and, when I stop to really think about it, what better way is there to change my point of view, my ‘normal’ than to immerse myself in the beauty and awe of such a place.

Originally, when I signed up for the Prosci Change Management Program course, I wondered why on earth the organizers would hold it in such a beautiful setting if the agenda is so chocker block full there’s no time to enjoy the surroundings.

Yesterday, after I’d checked into my room at the beautiful Rimrock Hotel and sat in the comfortable leather chair in my room looking out at the view, I realized how smart the organizers are. To hold a Change Management course in a downtown business setting would not have afforded the attendees a chance to get out of our everyday worlds. And keeping ourselves in our everyday worlds would have inhibited our capacity to ‘see different’.

And that’s what change management requires. A willingness to see change through the eyes of possibility so that engagement of everyone involved becomes more dynamic, energized and creative. Because ultimately, change management isn’t about creating stellar processes to manage ‘the change’. It’s about engaging people in the change so that they buy-into the value of why change is necessary and how they can benefit from being part of making it possible.

From that point of view, change becomes less threatening, less scary. It becomes more of an exciting journey in which we all engage, together, to make change happen so that together, we can create better in the world around us.

The view outside my window

And this world definitely needs us all to be engaged in creating better.

I am in beautiful Banff for the next three days to deepen my knowledge of change management. From this beautiful setting I can see how deep transformative change is only possible when I expand my limited thinking to become more inclusive of a broader point of view. A POV that isn’t just about what I see as possible, but what we all see as possible when we let go of holding onto ‘the way things are’ and dive into what is possible when we allow change to transform our lives for the better of all.

And the only way to let that happen, is to stop holding onto what I think I know, and dive into all I don’t know about change management. For me right now, that begins with breathing into the beauty of my surroundings and giving gratitude for the organizers for having the wisdom to hold this course in such a beautiful, awe-inspiring setting.