Today I Met Tom Hanks

Life has a way of teaching us lessons at every moment, if we are present enough to be able to catch a glimpse of them. As Elizabeth Gilbert writes in her book “Big Magic,” moments, ideas or opportunities show up when we least expect them and then are gone in an instant if we don’t take the time to recognize them.

Today was no different. I was helping a friend out in her store when Tom Hanks stepped up to the register with an arm full of goods to purchase. He was very kind and soft spoken. And actually, is much better looking in real life than on the screen. I found that kind of interesting. Anyway, as I tallied up his purchase and sent him on his way, I began to think what it must be like to be on the big screen.

What if your life was a Blockbuster Hit? Would you be ready for it? I like to tell my clients to take a look at their life and themselves as though they were having an out of body experience. Never in a negative way, just observing. How are you standing, what are you doing, how are you acting…that kind of observing?

Now, take that a step further. If your life were a Blockbuster Hit, if you were the Tom Hanks in your life are you in the starring role or a supporting actor? Are you following the script, the plan you set out on or are you just sitting on the sidelines of victim-hood playing the “it’s not my job man” role?

So, let’s take a look at “what if”? What if you had everything you wanted? Do you need to be any different? How would you need to show up every day? If you want something different, then you have to be different. Tell me how you would be?

In the book, “Adventures for Your Soul” the author, Shannon Kaiser has these questions to ask in starring in your Blockbuster Hit:
1. If your life were a movie, and you were the leading character, how would you want to be portrayed?
2. If all circumstances allowed (you had enough time and money), what would you really want to do? How would your movie play out?
3. What is your happy ending? What desires are in your heart that want to be freed?
4. Where does your story take place? What location? What is the environment life?
5. What does your ideal life look like?

Once you’ve answered these questions you can go ahead and begin writing your script. Write the movie that you want to live. Write your favorite part. Look at all aspects of your life as a Blockbuster Hit. No need to let the negative voices creep up, it’s just a movie after all.

Tom Hanks is not different than you or me. He just wrote his script and stepped into it. Are you willing to do that?

I can’t wait to see you in the starring role!


Merry Lynch

Are you ready to be the leading lady in your life? Then join Tracey Jones of Tremendous Leadership and myself for Reflect, Revitalize, Renew Mastermind Retreat in Warsaw, Poland! Check out the details by clicking on the image below! Will you be one of the 10 lucky women to attend?

They Didn’t Have a Choice

Sometimes I wonder if in today’s world we actually have too many choices. Having too many options to select from can keep us stuck, out of not wanting to make the wrong choice or not knowing how to actually decide.

That is how I came to be writing about the topic of “choice.” One of the cool things I love about living abroad is how small the world seems to be. On a recent road trip back from Spain to Poland we were asked by a friend, that we drop off something to her mom on our journey back to Warsaw.

I love instances like this when I get an opportunity to see how the natives live and hear their stories. The woman we are about to visit is in her mid-seventies and has lived in a small town all of her life and does not speak a lick of English. So, just in case, I make sure to have a note pad and pencil so that I can draw images as my Polish language skills are pretty bad, even by my standards.

Thankfully, I have my husband, (a native Pole) to do some of my translating. I just can’t help myself from wanting to learn about peoples lives, so my husband always has his job cut out for him as I shoot questions left and right. This visit proved to be no different. Pani (older woman in Polish) was so excited to have us visit that she also invited a neighbor. Sometimes being the “token American” can be fun, especially in a country like Poland where they love America and Americans.

As in most Polish households, the food is non-stop. This visit proved to be no different. Only this time the table was full of tomatoes. Brightly colored and served in every way imaginable, I was interested to understand, “why all the tomatoes?” I knew it was summer time but the amount of tomatoes and the many different varities, made me wonder. I began politely asking about the differences.

Both of the ladies chimed in with an immense amount of information, from discussions of the soil, to the type of water and sun. The information was plentiful and non-stop. So, I dug a little deeper. “Why tomatoes,” I ask? The answer, they didn’t have a choice.

Come to find out, tomatoes are one of the worlds heathiest vegetables. The things you learn when you become present and inquisitive about someone else. This is not something that ever came natural to me. I was always too much in a hurry, to focused on the my goal to stop and have a deep conversation about things like tomatoes. If this sounds like you, then you can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that with practice, you too, can learn to be present. The pay off is huge!

Back to the ladies…the answer these women gave, almost took my breath away and made me wonder if not having choices could be a good thing? During their time of high school when college decisions were looming, these two women didn’t have a choice. They were told what they would study, and not by their parents. That was life under communism. You didn’t have a choice. The women were sent to school to study tomatoes and both have master’s degrees in horticulture and are professors at the university. These women are beyond brilliant.

I pressed on asking them about choices and what they would have done differently in their life and their careers. They didn’t have an answer. They had never dreamed of anything else. They just did. Now after having written many published articles and being international speakers at horticulture conferences around the globe, these women have become celebrities in their own world, and they didn’t have a choice. Do you day dream too much? What would it take to you to focus on one thing?

It all gets back to the discussion about focus. I find with many of my clients, as well as myself, that we have many facets to our lives and therefore have many different interests. These varying thoughts keep us spinning on the hamster wheel without the ability to stop and get off to head in one direction. We think of this as lack instead of abundance. When in fact, if we do focus, the abundance is astronomical.

Think of this, if you were told. No, let me refrain that, if you were ordered to do one thing (and didn’t fight it); what would it be? Out of all your interests and all the things that you are seemingly good at, what is the one thing that if ordered to do, you would forge ahead, full force and get it done? One thing? What it is?

Full of love and wonder,

Merry Lynch

P.S. Want to take a break from too much daydreaming and learn to stream line your thoughts and ambitions? Then check out the upcoming Group Mastermind by clicking below!

How to use excuses to drive you

Excuses come in all shapes and sizes. Excuses are quite simply put…dream busters. On the other hand, what if, we used excuses to fuel our passions?

You know we each have the same 24 hours in a day and yet I often here people say they need more time. That the day seemed to fly by, and they have nothing to show for it. Have you ever found yourself saying that?

We have smartphones and tablets, laptops and televisions, coworkers and family members, that pull us away from our tasks in a moment without us even begin aware of it. Running our life on auto-pilot is second nature to us now.
So, what’s your excuse for not living life to the fullest? What is your escape from life? Where do you go to hide? Are you even present? I know these questions might seem kind of abrupt and in your face but too many times people turn to pass the buck instead of making informed, clear, decisive decisions about anything.

Have a look, if only for today or this moment, at what is your reason behind each of the interactions, thoughts, choices and decisions that you are making. Where are they leading you? Are you making the best use of your time? Do you even care?

I was thinking about this question after being on a coaching call with a client who was refusing to take responsibility for the outcomes that she was experiencing. What’s your excuse? It’s a simple question that has great implications.
Excuses place bright shiny objects in front of us, that steal our attention in an instant. It doesn’t matter how big or small, they are all time wasters. Do you know what your biggest time wasters are? Is it clutter, procrastination, inability to say no, daydreaming, putting out fires, poor delegation, no plan, habits, resisting change, a combination of these or something else?

But what happens when we use excuses to push us to do something? For instance, I think about this question even when planning a trip. What’s my excuse for spending money on yet another trip? So, I’ll be perfectly honest here, I travel for food. Yup, I love to eat, but it has to be really, really good food as well as good for me. I have a weird belief that my body is my temple and that what I put into it has to be worthy. Ok, so there are times when I just flat out will eat whatever is available or when I travel to places like Old Orchard Beach, Maine for some Pier French Fries but for the most part I am really concise and clear about what goes in my mouth.

After I’ve had a great meal or read an article about a certain region of the world that is known for raising a particular kind of animal, vegetable or fruit, then my antennas perk up and I am like a hound on a scent. The research begins, I work on a plan and then BAM, off we go. Living and eating like a native is always at the base of the travel plans for my husband and I.

This is exactly how we ended up in San Daniele, Italy. In pursuit of the best prosciutto in the world. It all began after reading an article in Bon Apetit magazine about prosciutto sandwiches. The seed was planted, it was the excuse that fueled the desire. After a short flight, a train ride (my favorite), and a car rental we found ourselves winding through the small villages and towns of the Italian countryside to our destination.

As a little girl there was an Italian delicatessen called Micucci’s Market the next town over, that is still open today. Every Thursday we would all pile into the car and take the weekly jaunt to Micucci’s. I still remember the smells coming from the deli. My dad’s mother was from Italy, so he was very particular about his cold cuts and being a big man, he loved his food. So, this trip to San Daniele had other excuses fueling it. It was a trip that I knew my dad would have loved to have taken.

San Daniele is a small village in the mountains with a population of 8100 but boasts the most magnificent prosciutto in the world. San Daniele, sits halfway between the Carnic Alps and the Adriatic Sea which provides an exquisite micro-climate for the meats aging process, which has been taking place since the 1600’s. The views of this region are breathtaking.

Prosciutto, which translates to “ham” in Italian, is made from the hind legs of the pig. Because of the aging process, prosciutto does not have to be cooked, unlike bacon or pancetta. There are mainly two regions in Italy where prosciutto is famous, that is Parma and San Daniele. There is a long-standing battle between these two regions as to who offers the best prosciutto. I say, you must check them both out for yourself and then you can decide.

There are never any additives to the aging process other than salt and the air and, of course, time. The aging process takes from 200 to 400 days, so just as in parmesan cheese, the older the better or like a fine red wine. Can I say that about myself…that I’m getting better with age? I always have feared about becoming a cranky old lady.

As my husband and I descend upon the small town of San Daniele it is siesta time and the town is quiet and the streets are empty. It is ten minutes to two and we are starving. Hoping to get a taste of this exquisite ham we find ourselves entering a delicatessen where the pig legs are covering the walls. The butcher behind the counter is expertly slicing some prosciutto for his client and offers us a slice. It’s heavenly. As he is about to close up shop for the siesta time, we ask him where he would go to eat.

His eyes light up and he draws a map on a napkin, pointing us in the direction of a small restaurant a few blocks away that is down a side street, off the beaten path. We arrive at the L’Osteria di Tancredi restaurant which is simply charming.

We are seated and ask the waitress to bring us a board of prosciutto, cheese with paired wine. These are the moments in life I seek. When time stands still. The taste, the smell, the wine…life doesn’t get much better than this simple meal.

Then I notice a couple at the next table were just served noodles with this amazing prosciutto on top. I ask them if they speak English and thankfully, they did. They described this dish as their favorite (they are natives) and I quickly summon the waitress as we order the same. Homemade pasta with aged prosciutto and a perfectly paired Italian wine. I can honestly say that there is nothing better than eating food from the region, in the region, served by the natives. They are passionate which makes it even better.

So, if you are ready to start having your excuses work to your benefit, then book your travel next June for the Aria di San Daniele La Festa, which is the annual San Daniele prosciutto festival. Which for you pork lovers would certainly be an event to attend. And while you’re at it, stop by the L’Osteria di Tancredi for a bite of something fabulous, maybe a mouthwatering dessert? My husband was certainly in heaven when our very attentive waitress suggested a bite of something native.

The next time you attempt to point your finger at someone or something as the excuse for you not being able to complete something, then think of this post and flip the script. Stop using excuses for not achieving your goal, instead use the excuse to empower you to push forward and live an outrageous life!

Eat well, laugh often!

Merry Lynch

P.S. Don’t miss next weeks post titled, “Are you worth more as you age?”

The Happiness Scale

Are You Happy or Merry?

What a great time of year to assess this question. Are you happy, or in my world, it would be: Are You Merry? But either way, which is it…are you really happy?

If you think about it, we weren’t put on this Earth to have a terrible time, right? Oh sure, not every day will be…kumbaya but in the overall scheme of things how would you rank your happiness on a scale of 1-10?

Three husbands later, I can certainly say that I struggled in this area for quite some time. The choices that I made were definitely not in line with who I was and what I wanted out of my life. It was almost as though I was setting myself up for failure, but I was totally oblivious to it.

That was until I learned that my ego had run amuck. I had been looking outside myself for the answer…for happiness. It’s so easy to point the finger, to place blame on someone or something else. It was easy not having to look at the choices I made as the culprit.

My ego, often lovingly referred to as, “edging God out”, had been in control all along. My ego had control of the wheel and my life. It doesn’t matter whether you are religious or not, or even believe in God or not, what does matter that looking outside yourself for your happiness doesn’t work…ever. “Edging God out,” refers to seeking or expecting that the world and everyone in it is here to make sure that you are happy and that “your” needs are met. Sounds pretty preposterous when it‘s explained like that, do you agree?

You’re the only one that can make you happy or in my world, I’m the only one that can make me “merry.”

Here is a great exercise I like to use with my coaching clients to help deliver this message. I didn’t design it, I only put a new and deeper spin on it. Download the workbook with instructions here!

This exercise is quite eye opening, if you take it seriously and take the time to do the work.

Now that you are armed with a visual of where your happiness or fulfillment level is, it’s time to take that finger and point it right back at yourself. You have the answer, you are the magic pill, only you can make you happy…merry.

Begin today by noticing how blessed you are. Sure you have some work to do, after all, we’re all “under construction.” Grab a pair of rose-colored glasses and set out to see, feel and experience life on the happy…no, no, no…merry side.

Cheers to going and growing!

Merry Lynch

P.S. Let me know your biggest challenge this year as well as your most passionate area. I love hearing your stories!

What Does Your Dream Team Look Like?

Who Would Be On Your Dream Team?

As the year rolls to an end, it’s a great to reflect on how things turned out for you. Not just about goals that either were achieved or missed but also whether you took the time to be silly, playful, carefree. Did you take all of your vacation time? And while on vacation did you really tune out and turn off home life to be present and grateful for what was surrounding you?

This is also a perfect time to really sit and reflect on what success means to you. Whatever success might mean to you. Make sure that your idea of success is yours and not what others either have planned for you or expect of you. Your life is defined by your decisions, not where you came from, what you do or how smart you are.

Many of the people that we might look of as successful, people like, Richard Branson, Oprah and Bill Gates all attribute their steadfastness and achievement to having mentors or coaches. So, think about that for a minute…who would you have on your “dream team?” What are the skills or characteristics that you want to learn in the coming year, that someone else might be able to help you with?

Do you want to get better at handling money, maybe you want to become more fit or healthier? How about getting better at remembering names or smiling more, would being more in touch with a higher power or more spiritual help you? Could a business plan or a new way to look at staffing bring new life to your idea or organization?

Why not put together your “dream team?” Think of this “dream team” as a group of about six to ten people, either dead or alive, that have some attribute, way of being, resources or mindset that you want more of in your life. Really take the time to research people that have the traits you desire. What are their values? Are they in line with what you believe for yourself? Are they philanthropists? Serving others is the rent we pay for our time on Earth. Do they live where you want to live, hang around with the type of people you want to hang around with? What is it about each person you select that makes it worthy for them to sit on your “dream team?”

My “dream team” played out like this:

Ellen DeGeneres – comedian, because I want to laugh more; philanthropist, because although I volunteer in whatever community I am staying in I want to also be financially giving more than I currently am; authentic, because sometimes I try to please others too much
Charles “Tremendous” Jones – international motivational speaker, because the space I feel most comfortable in is on a stage in front of hundreds of people; faithful, because I feel the need to connect with the Divine on a deeper level
Martha Stewart – teacher of home keeping, because as an etiquette trainer I believe in the importance of sharing food, being welcoming and being kind, female entrepreneur, because she started with a small idea and grew an empire…I’m on that path; vision, because even though times were sometimes tough, she had a vision and stayed the course…I am constantly working on my clarity
Ruth Bader Ginsberg – uses her voice, because I often turn my back on confrontation…that must stop; clarity of purpose, because having a clear stance changes the game; ageless, because there is no reason to slow down
Arianna Huffington – do it anyway attitude, because the world is my oyster and success is within my reach; redefines herself, because as we grow and evolve our interests, goals and life changes and that’s ok
Diane Von Furstenberg – desire to be independent, because I feel powerful when I am supporting myself; self-made female entrepreneur, because for more than twenty years of my life I have been an entrepreneur and I love that about myself
Now that you see my list and understand why I selected each one, go ahead and begin your own list. Remember they can be dead or alive. This is the team you go to when you are stuck. You may look at the whole team or an individual and say to yourself, “what would _______________ do in this situation?” You’d be surprised at the answers you’ll come up with.

Go ahead, make a wish…imagine the outcome…anticipate obstacles…hatch the plan. The new year is upon us, now is your time. Send me a message of your plan for the new year, let’s put it out to the universe and see what happens!!!

Cheers to a fabulous New Year!

Merry Lynch

P.S. Share the LOVE, hit the share button just because it feels good!

My Failed TV Debut

Have you ever heard the saying, “things happen for a reason?” In my head, what I hear is “blah, blah, blah.” Ugh! Sometimes I just hate all these happy horse shit sayings, trying to keep me happy through disaster, yet, that is just what they do.

My husband and I were asked to be on a segment of International House Hunters. The TV producers heard we were looking for a home in Poland, a place they were looking to do a show in. Excited about this adventure we put together our preliminary video. Check it out below – click on the image.

We had a list of wants for our new home:

  • Historic building
  • Parking
  • Elevator or 1st floor unit
  • Storage
  • Budget 50K

The show was on a schedule, so we hat to find a unit and fast. Several realtors later (a story for another time), we found the perfect spot.

  • Historic building – check.
  • Parking – well…does it count that it was down the street and around the corner?
  • Elevator or 1st floor-nope but maybe my thighs could use the workout…don’t they?
  • Storage-well sort of…with 12-foot ceilings we could build it in…can’t we?
  • Budget-under budget but a total redo inside…are we out of our minds…quite possibly!
  • Click the image to see the final project…to see why we were so in love!!

Deal made, papers signed, architect hired. So far so good, don’t you think? Next up the producers needed a video of the flat, so we brought the architect along to finalize the plans.

My husband and I were like newlyweds. He was ecstatic to have his American wife moving to his home country. A place that he was not sure he would ever return to after defecting to America during the Solidarity movement in 1979.

Arriving at the property we see the outside transition of the building taking place, the elegant return of the façade is beautiful, and our minds are a flurry with excitement.

There are construction workers busy at work both inside and out as we climb the stairs to our new home. I pull the video camera out as we open the door. We’ re thrilled! We enter the small foyer area as the architect tells us of his plan. So far, so good and amazing.

We walk down the small corridor into the area were the bathroom and kitchen will be. My mind is bursting with ideas. The architect and I are in sync and I couldn’t be happier, until we round the corner to the living room.

It’s gone…they’re gone..all of the original hand carved doors – GONE. The original oak parquet floors – TORN UP AND GONE. I want to throw up.

The architect is stunned and tells us he can find replacements – at a cost of course. But my heart has already sunk. The vision is gone.

We phone the agent and the developer who do not see the problem. To them they were old, to us they were part of the story that the unit had to tell. I was excited to live in a place that had stories to share. The building had been through a lot and the people that had previously lived there had left impressions or feelings in the space. I wanted to that.

Oh no…the deadlines. Now what? Everything is off-we have given notice to move out from our current apartment. The TV show deadline will be missed. Where will we live, what will we do, where will we put our things? The down payment?

Freaked out, pissed off, frustrated and the real estate agent and developer offer no solution. This is not America, there is no one to sue, no recourse, we just pray that we can get our deposit back. Devastated we pull out from the contract, thankfully our money was refunded (thanks to the photos and videos I had done throughout the journey – thanks to TVN) and my TV debut is squashed.

This was probably one of the hardest things I have ever done. The communication problems with the realtor, not understanding the American. Going from 1400 square feet (130 square meters) to 480 square feet (45 square meters) is emotional and no one could understand that. I felt alone and even though I was excited about the experience I secretly wondered what the hell I was getting myself into.

In the end, “things happen for a reason.” Or I could say, “hind sight is 20/20.” Although our wish list of being in a historic building was met, parking our car outside, around the corner and down the street in the winter time would have been a disaster. And hiking up 3 long flights of stairs several times a day with groceries would not have been any fun, even on a good day. As for the storage, we could have built enough in the unit but would have needed a ladder to access it…not on my list of good ideas as we age. And as far as the budget, we certainly were under our 50K budget but this was a total redo and not like in America where the walls are made of 2 x 4’s and drywall. These were 12-inch cement walls with a bathroom and kitchen that did not currently exist. So, all in all, someone was looking out for us. In other words, “things happen for a reason.”

Where has this happened in your life? When have “things happened for a reason” that you might have been trying to force? When did you need to let go of the wheel and stop being in control? When did you have to believe that there was something else out there for you?

After the devastation passed and we could breathe a sigh of relief, we totally did a 180 and ended up buying a flat in a new development outside of the city that was not historic at all, that has under-ground on-site parking, an elevator, private storage unit and a security guard at the gate. Yup, buyers are liars. Which, this in and of itself is another story for another time. Traveling the globe and trying to bring our traditional ways of doing things definitely does not work, even when buying a new unit. Living like a native…does. But we are thrilled with our final decision even though we have a long way to go to the final product…(a story for another time.)

Where is your silver lining?

Cheers to life lessons,

Merry Lynch

P.S. If you have someone in your life that would enjoy this post or that is thinking or dreaming of living in a foreign country…send this post their way!

You can also check out all the other posts on my life overseas at: How To Be Merry

It’s A Fabulous Life!

My life is fabulous, and I could scream that from the tallest mountain so that all could hear and yet it wasn’t always that way. Two divorces, a lengthy and devasting child custody case, sexual advances from a boss that got me fired, lyme disease that left me unable to walk or talk and through all this I can still say that my life is fabulous.

I know this may sound cliché, but life can be fabulous for you as well. I will show you how to grab the life that is waiting for you to wake up and grab it. Taking you from chronic to confident. If I can do it, anyone can. So, if you are sick and tired of being sick and tired then sign up and get notified when I release new programs and freebies to help you move from stuck to star struck with your life.

Over the next few months things are changing for the better at How To Be Merry Lifestyle Company. I’ll be launching my signature on-line (so you can access from anywhere) Core Confidence Visions Program, along with a bunch of new free resourcesto get you up and out moving toward your own fabulous life. You’ll also be able to join in for the Live Launch and receive extra added bonuses for showing up in your life. The first on-line launch will be for women only, so if you have a special someone in your life pass this along. Providing a safe place for women to grow and blossom will help your relationship, community and the world to flourish.

If by chance, as a male, you are interested in developing your Core Confidence Visions, I will be offering this same program to an all male audience. So be sure to sign up for the waitlist as well and get notified as soon as Core Confidence Visions for Men becomes available.

Also launching in 2019 are the Get To The Core Mastermind Group Coaching Programs. There are three programs in all, taking a deep dive into your:

  • Behaviors and how your life on auto-pilot helps or hinders you. How to use your Core Self to move you to grab the opportunities that surround you and to best use your innate skills to build a life you have dreamed of.
  • Essential Motivators and what drives you. If you’ve wondered how to begin, how to stop the negative soundtrack, how to move from fear, and how to be one of the lucky ones that get to live a fabulous life then this deep dive is riveting and is sure to light the fire.
  • Emotional Intelligence and the way your emotions keep you in “Crazy Town” or allow the energy vampires to steal your fire. We’ll look at how your breath, choices, and thoughts can change the outcome for any situation. And how discovering your big WHY will keep your life in check and on track for fabulousness.

Each program will layer on top of one another, bringing you deeper and deeper into your inner workings so that you can move gracefully and with ease into the drivers seat of your life. We’ll have live weekly webinars, expert interviews, personalized assessments, workbooks, hot seats and lots more. The eight week programs will provide clarity and bring you to a better understanding of your desires and how easily they are to access.

As a master facilitator of the behavioral sciences I’ll take you through mindful practices so that you’ll have an opportunity to see first hand what is driving you and what stops you, your strengths and your weaknesses, hidden opportunities and your undiscovered gems. 3 life changing programs, to catapult you from just dreaming about a different life to actually creating one.

With so much going on I’ll be blogging only once a week to make sure I’m on time and providing you the resources and information you need to live a How To Be Merry Lifestyle. So, if fear of the future, or the fear of not knowing, fear of success or failure, or you’re just plain confused on where to go and what to do, then these upcoming programs are for you.

Sign up to get on the waitlist and get notified when the GET TO THE CORE Group Mastermind programs are offered as space will be limited.

Take back your life by making a commitment to yourself to do something different. Join in on the conversation, change your thoughts, be the designer of your fabulous life.

With love and light,

Merry Lynch

P.S. If you know of someone who could benefit from this post, sharing is caring. Give a hand to someone in need of the information that could rock their world.

Would You Give Me The Shirt Off Your Back?

Well, it never hurts to ask as I found out while having lunch at Dick’s Kitchen in Portland, Oregon.
My daughter and I are both what I would call “foodies,” we both love to cook, enjoy eating, and love to share it with others. In anticipation of my arrival, Melissa (my daughter) would compile a list of restaurants we had to visit. The qualifying standards were unusual offerings, imaginative decor, and organic, home grown, free range and cage free food that could satisfy our taste buds.

This visit was no different and with a hankering for the best burger in town we found ourselves at Dick’s Kitchen where I had a choice of free range local beef, bison or boar and to top it all off I could get it on a gluten free bun which was an added bonus.

Besides the great menu the customer service was over the top from the time we stepped in the door. In the age of fast food and internet shopping personalized service is all that brick and mortar stores and restaurants have to offer. It seems as though they understand that at Dick’s Kitchen.

Each staff person also had on a tee shirt with the Dick’s Kitchen logo all with varying verses that were quite clever. I asked our server if the t-shirts were for sale and she promptly brought over the list and size ranges. The problem was the server behind the counter had a tee shirt on that I did not find on the list so I asked about that one. Come to find out, they were sold out and normally I would just shrug my shoulders and move on, but not this time.

For those of you that know my husband I am sure that you would agree that he needed a tee shirt that said “Fast, Hot and Juicy,” it was meant for him and I had to get it somehow. Trust me when I say that I have never done this before but I inquired about buying the shirt off the servers back. After a few rounds of “are you serious,” “it’s used and dirty,” the server stripped down and promptly handed over his shirt. So not only did I have an amazing free range burger that was amazingly tasty and juicy, my daughter and I had a relaxing, fun filled afternoon with the staff at Dick’s Kitchen in Portland, Oregon.

Leadership comes from the top down; it takes a special environment for team members to be able to genuinely be interested in their patrons. Take a tip from Sam Walton who said “There is only one boss. The customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.
Dick’s Kitchen will keep me talking about them for a long time. It wasn’t just about the server giving me the shirt off his back; it began the moment we walked in the door.

To top it all off, the t-shirt was a huge hit. My husband traveled with this t-shirt all over the world. Here he is in Paris which seems a little crude in the culinary capital of the world but he is all that and more!

Cheers to Fast, Hot & Juicy!

Merry Lynch

P.S. Love burgers and Portland, Oregon? Click the share button and head on over to Dick’s Kitchen.

Are You A Resident Of Crazy Town?

Are You A Resident Of Crazy Town?

Emotions can run amuck anytime of year but especially around the holidays. Christmas comes on the same day each year and yet we often find ourselves ill prepared financially or emotionally. We get all stuck in our head about “the list” and instead of focusing on the joy of the season we frantically go from store to store or spend hours upon hours on-line looking for the perfect gift, when the best gift of all is being present. All the while over extending ourselves emotionally, physically and financially.

We lose sleep and forget to take care of ourselves usually spiraling out of control with the flu, a cold or some other illness. I dare say that we should all leave Crazy Town, if only for this time of year. Negative energy just attracts more of that. It’s a vicious cycle. Just how long have you been a resident of Crazy Town? How long have you been paralyzed and fall victim to the situations in your life? The life that you created none-the-less.

There is hope however, being that you created your life and everything in it, you can also re-create it, press the reset button or just simply start over? What would you want to happen in your life instead of living in Crazy Town? Take a moment to start listing and journaling about what your life say in “Paradise” might look and feel like? If “Paradise” is too much of a stretch for you then just replace that with whatever other positive word would fit.

Making a list of how you do want your life to look like can seem like an impossible task and much too difficult. If this is you, then try by taking out a piece of paper and make two columns. On the left-side label this column “don’ts” and on the right-side label this side “do’s”. Under the column “don’ts” list everything in your life that you want to get rid of, and I mean everything. Don’t be shy, look at your relationships and those energy sucking vampires, your profession and whether it is passion filled, where you live, how you feel, the car you drive, your clothes, how you feel about your shape or weight, your hair. Don’t’ miss a beat. Caution, you may need to use the back side of the paper.

Dishing out all of that negative energy can be exhausting, so take a break, grab a drink of your choice, take a few deep belly breaths to get some good oxytocin flowing and begin to write down the opposite of your “don’t” list. For instance, you may have written down on your “don’t” list, a few names of people that either you don’t care for, have hurt you in some way or just are too much maintenance. On the “do” side you may want to write down people you want to emulate, new relationships you want to begin, people you would like to meet. See what I mean?

Once you have that list completed its time to break up with your issues and begin to take positive action, by packing your bags and getting the hell out of Crazy Town. Issues and problems are part of life, the drama is optional.

Where are you letting your emotions drive you and what are you willing to do to change that?

Intentionally yours,

Merry Lynch

P.S. Do you know of anyone living in Crazy Town? If so, then do them a favor and share this email. Help to stop the cylce of Crazy Town.

If you enjoyed this post, then you may also like to read this: What Do You Say To Yourself When You Look In The Mirror.

Are You A Change Agent?

Certainly, by now, you know that you have some gifts that you could share with the world. And for those of you that can’t think of anything you could share, get over yourself and dig deep. Look at the world around you and find a person, place or thing that could use some help and go lend a hand. I look at helping others as the rent that I pay for my time on Earth.

Recently I have been volunteering at the local university in the country I am now residing in which is Poland…and let me say if you don’t know this already, I do not speak the language. The US State Department funds a program called the American Corner around the globe in conjunction with educational facilities. Feeling very blessed in my life, I felt it is the least I could do, and I get to meet people from around the globe who just want to speak English better or meet their first American.

I participate in a workshop called, Conversation Club, that meets once a week and is meant for foreigners that want to improve their English. Pretty much we sit in a circle and begin talking about a specific subject. The idea being is to get each participant to speak, which quite honestly can be challenging depending on the topic. People get all stuck in their heads about their English isn’t good enough, so why open my mouth. Where does that kind of thinking show up in your life?

Through my participation I have also facilitated a program for high school students that are studying English. That was a blast. But for me, it is all about the interaction and connection that I can help facilitate. The high school students were all from Poland and stared at me starry eyed that I had lived in San Diego, a place they dream of seeing someday.

Poland is mainly a Catholic country and has a mostly white population. They government has been declining the entrance of refugees, even though it is mandatory through the European Union. The people that come to the American Corner are from all different races, religions and ethnicities and I might add are from all ages.

The American Corner is free to the public and provides a small library and offers workshops and programs such as the one I attend. Each meeting different people show up, so it is really a mixed bag. Being held in the local university many of those that attend are students from around the world.

It is interesting to have Russians sitting next to Poles or Ukrainians. The history between these countries has been horrific at best and the wounds are still there. I have to say that I was a little nervous about being a room with strangers from opposing countries that are still at odds and at war. And even though this gathering is about getting more comfortable speaking English, I have found it to be an opportunity to have true dialog with people you might not otherwise be in contact with. The Conversation Club is truly about connection.

It is tremendously eye opening, not only for me but I hope for the participants as well. On one such evening we went around the room talking about what they will do and where they would like to live after they graduate or retire. A Ukrainian student spoke up saying that he can not return to his home because it was just destroyed by the Russians last week and his family, some that were killed and others that fled, have no where to live. A young Russian student was sitting straight across from him and their eyes met.

The conversation that pursued was fascinating and you could see how words get misconstrued and how communication gets altered. To keep the conversation friendly, I began to ask others about their homeland and the conflicts that arise. The participants from Turkey, Syria, and Azerbaijan all spoke up about the recent conflicts in their countries.

We were able to talk about problems and possible solutions, as well as the deep seeded conflicts of these different regions around the globe. You know the saying “it takes a village to raise a child?” It’s about people coming together, of all ages. The attendees were not mad at each other, they just wanted to understand why it was necessary to hurt one another or to take away what they had and then destroy it.

How do we then, each of us, place kindness toward one another? How can we put the past aside? Can we learn to trust, after all the desecration? Have we learned anything from history? It seems to me that it just keeps on repeating itself. It’s the bully in the sand box that wants it all. How can we bring up children to be accepting of one another? What role as parents and grand parents can we play a larger part in? The participants at the American Corner wanted to understand one another. How can we get that to play out, outside the doors of this program?

What fears or misunderstandings do you harbor against another race, religion or culture? What will it take to put down your fist and open your hand? Maybe just by volunteering and serving others that are less fortunate, you could begin to see that people are the same everywhere. We all want love, happiness and fulfilment. Our past should not define us. Be the change the wish to see in the world. You might just be surprised who will become your next best friend.

With Love and Gratitude,

Merry Lynch

P.S. What kind of volunteer work do you or want to do? Make a pact to be a change agent this coming year. Use your gifts to help make the world a better place. Share this with a friend and go volunteer together. The world needs people like you to lend a hand.

Set an intention of doing something different this year. What kind of person do you want to show up as? What will you choose to do different? Sign up for my FREE How To Set An Intention self-paced program. Be the Change Agent that the world needs.

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