[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] My story matters!

travel writing

My story matters!…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – My story matters! or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Powerful combo: What you know and Who you know

Mary E. Knippel sharing on Rebecca Hall Gruyter’s Success Panel as part of the 2017 Women’s Empowerment Series.

We’ve all heard that it’s often not what you know but who you know. Of course, we know how important it is to get out there and spread the word about our message. We are among the lucky ones if we are fortunate enough to have friends who would help us prepare for an event, coach us on content and delivery, and then be our support system to strategize about next steps.

I’m sending a huge THANK YOU and lots of love to my friend, cheerleader and my Mentor, Rebecca Hall Gruyter. 

Your success is determined by what you know AND who you know. My friendly advice is to be confident in not only what you know…to also recognize that you are not in this alone…to acknowledge the tremendous impact of those who support you in sharing your clear, concise and compelling message with the world.

Rebecca and I have known each other for almost a decade now and I’ve been a witness to her beautiful journey. We are both committed to empowering women to be visible, vibrant and successful on this challenging roller coaster ride we call life. Today she is an international best-selling author, compiler of the International Best Selling multi-author book Come Out of Hiding and SHINE, Network Director for VoiceAmerica’s Women’s Channel (both Radio & TV), as well as a sought after speaker, visibility expert, and CEO of RHG Media Productions. It hasn’t always been that way. She knew she wanted to make a difference in the world, but wasn’t sure how she could do that while hiding in plain sight. The Women’s Empowerment Series concept was birthed at a retreat we were both attending where we both expressed our longing to live our purpose. I’ve benefited over and over from the series as a speaker on the stage and as a participant in the room. As a direct result of my relationship with Rebecca, I have opened myself up to new opportunities and had some incredible experiences. All because Rebecca nudged me to consider how I could have a bigger impact. It’s because of that purposeful nudging that I can say I am also an International Best-Selling author as one of the co-authors of the Come Out of Hiding and SHINE series. (Click here to get your copy.) And we’ll soon be releasing the second in this series entitled Bloom Where You Are Planted and SHINE!

Do you have someone who lifts you up?

How do you lift up others?

Tell someone that they shine today.

You’ll be glad you did.

Photo Credit:  Dot Claire.

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] I’m writing to tell you

travel writing

I’m writing to tell you…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – I’m writing to tell you or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Your purpose is the labor of your heart…

 

How are you doing with your 2017 resolutions? It’s Labor Day Weekend, we are saying goodbye to the summer, and pondering the last quarter of the year. Many folks are fretting about what goals they will strive for in 2018 when the current year has lots of room for success. Have you taken the time to reflect on the past year’s events up to this point? What needs attention, requires you to make changes, or decisions to guide you in living a life unleashed and being on purpose.

I know that people will only change when the behaviors that they have been using stops getting them the results that they want. The discomfort of the past must be great enough for the person to want to change the future. When we set our goals for the future and aim to be more on purpose with who we want to be, we need to see and feel the past as uncomfortable.

For me, living on purpose means to break my silence, rewrite my story from my perspective as only I can and telling my truth.

Nobody can tell my story but me. 

Nobody can tell YOUR story but YOU!

The truth is that you can rewrite the stories and unleash your true purpose in this life. You can ransom the gift you are to the world. 

The seeds of serving and seeing each other are planted within us. I believe that you do not labor when you are living your life on purpose and serve from your heart. I see us all having the same dream. We are all citizens in action every day to make the world a better place for all of us regardless of race, creed, color, age or religion. 

Every story is connected to the heartbeat of the world. We are each connected to one another on purpose from the heart.

photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] I’m feisty about…

travel writing

I’m feisty about…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – I’m feisty about or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Transformational Writing

Recently, I led a writing workshop and was met with sighs and groans when I invited everyone to prepare for our first writing experience of the day.

Really?

Why was there opposition to doing writing at a writing workshop? I was puzzled, yet not surprised. We are all gifted with creativity in various capacities. However, the Inner Critic is very quick to point out where we feel the most vulnerable. Writing is a sore spot for many people.

I often hear one of the following about why people don’t like to write:

  • I’ve never been good at writing, and my teachers (or parents, or another authority figure) all said so.
  • I can never think of anything to say.
  • Who would want to hear what I have to say anyway?
  • What if people don’t like what I have to say?
  • What if people won’t like me after I’ve said what I want to say?

Sound familiar?

To all of those comments, I have just one thing to say:  Write anyway!

It’s your story, and only you can share it from the inside out.

Unfortunately, there are those who will not like what you have to say. Do you like everyone and what everyone has to say? No. Well, I rest my case.

Think about the people who need to hear what you have to say, and you’ll be the writer you need to be.

As far as not knowing what to say, I’ll take you back to the writing workshop.

Umm. Ok, I guess I’ll play along. The first five-minute writing experience received a tepid response. I intended to plant the seed of possibility and prime the pump of the imagination for the next writing experience.

Yeah. That was interesting, and I’m intrigued. After the second five-minute writing experience, participants shared how this time they were surprised where their pen took them as they listened to their heart speaking to them.

We discussed the richness of hearing what you sub-conscious wants to tell us when we establish a consistent opportunity to show up on the page. And you create your own writing practice just the way you’d go about learning any other new skill by being consistent and dedicated to a goal.

Wow! That was amazing! Now, this is the part I absolutely love. The group asked for a third five-minute writing experience and shared how the messages from their soul with this writing was transformational! Yes, one of the participants did use the word transformational. And she indicated that the whole workshop had impacted more than her writing…she was thinking differently about her life!

And that, my friends, is exactly why I do what I do. My mission is to support you to unleash your story worth writing so that you can have the impact you are meant to have on the world. Writing is the tool we use. My hidden agenda is that you take that tool and rewrite the story holding you back. And write a new story of transformation where you make the difference you are here to make on the world. 

Hop over to my Facebook Page and let me know what came up while you were reading this post. I’m curious.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

 

 

 

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] My hidden agenda

travel writing

My hidden agenda…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – My hidden agenda or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] It’s state fair time

travel writing

It’s state fair time…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – It’s state fair time or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Focus on falling forward…

leapintolifeAre you falling forward?

Let’s take a lesson from nature and Mr. Emerson to simply accept the fact that we as humans will always be in a state of falling.

“…Let us draw a lesson from nature, which always works by short ways. When the fruit is ripe, it falls. When the fruit is despatched, the leaf falls. The circuit of the waters is mere falling. The walking of man and all animals is a falling forward. All our manual labor and works of strength, as prying, splitting, digging, rowing, and so forth, are done by dint of continual falling, and the globe, earth, moon, comet, sun, star, fall for ever and ever…”

From Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Essay 4

Falling is an easy posture for us to be in to look back on where we have been…the mistakes that stopped us in the pursuit of our goals…the disappointments and hurts. Why not be grateful that we’ve had the chance to go after our dreams? Pick yourself up and use the lessons learned to create a new plan. Move on one step at a time, one dream at a time, and build on the information we’ve gained and the knowledge we’ve acquired from the school of life.

Decide to keep your eyes on the horizon, and focus on falling forward into the future and not back into the past. 

Fall is a time of new beginnings…starting back to school…starting to harvest the crops…starting another quarter in the business world. 

What are you starting? 

Please share with me on my FB page how you will fall forward?

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] Summer is slipping away

travel writing

Summer is slipping away…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – Summer is slipping away or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Capture a Summer Camp Experience

Yes, I realize we are nearing the end of those “summer camp” days, but I think there’s still time for you to have a summer camp experience. Perhaps you have already sent your kids back to school, and you have gotten back into the school routine with carpools and after-school activity schedules. Or now that the calendar has shifted, you find yourself adapting to a new/familiar routine. But did you have a chance to run barefoot through the sprinklers, eat a Popsicle under a shady tree, or just curl up and get lost in a new book for an entire afternoon? Let your imagination and your creativity have a play date.

Farmer’s Union Camp was not anything glamorous.  Located at the edge of Whitewater State Park in the heart of Midwestern farmland, the camp had seen better days having taken abuse from the hundreds of summer campers over the years.  But for my brother and me, it was a chance to experience life off the farm. We were eager to have the opportunity to stay in a cabin with kids other than our brothers and sisters from Tuesday through Friday night.

It was the trip of a lifetime. My one summer camp experience included hiking in a state park, sleeping in bunk beds in pine cabins with eight others, painting ceramics, and performing in a Fractured Fairytale skit which we helped write.  

My mother had the ceramic fruit we painted on her kitchen wall for years. I remember the rainy afternoon we labored over the exact red we wanted for the apples and the perfect shade of yellow for the bananas.  By the time my daughter went off to summer camp, her activities included horseback riding and panning for gold in the Colorado Rockies.

Take a minute to think about what your favorite summer camp experience was as a kid. Didn’t have one? Well, choose an activity and make it happen! Summer 2017 will soon be a memory. Give yourself the summer camp treatment!

photo credit:  MEKnippel.CrookedLake.MN

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] Dear Younger Me…


travel writing

Dear Younger Me…

Friday five-minute writing prompt…

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – Dear Younger Me or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com