Saturday, September 21, 2013

A Note From Cindy

Welcome to Montana Woman’s 223rd issue.  It is hard to believe that nineteen years ago Montana Woman Magazine hit the stands as a single sheet of paper.  February 2014 marks our 20th year!  Plans have already begun in preparation of our anniversary issue and it promises to be spectacular!

This issue is full of Montana treasures, sites, history and just plain fun.  While planning our ‘Road Trip’ issue I was reminded that MW’s journey has much in common with a road trip.  Each issue is like a new destination.  The excitement of a new adventure brings us pure joy.

Destination:  As with road trippin’ one must have a destination in mind. This is the stage where the dreaming occurs.  The bigger the dream and the further the distance the more opportunity for adventure. After picking your vacation spot, it is important to plan a route to get there. 

Plan: The MW team never settles for mundane.  We like excitement and choose a different route each month.   The team maps out the course and comes up with a plan to ensure our journey is enjoyable.  We make sure to keep it flexible enough to embrace the unexpected. 

Points of Interest:  During our ‘trip’ we meet amazing people who inspire use to travel further than we thought we could.  They share points of interest and introduce us to friends and relatives that change our lives forever.  They entrust us with their life stories and allow us to preserve their history.

Be Prepared for the Unexpected:  No matter how well you plan and prepare things happen.  The bends in the roads keep things interesting and us on our toes. Planning any trip requires a little care and consideration, but in the case of a true adventure, it is especially important to be thorough and leave leeway for the unexpected. I have found that this is when the magic happens!

Enjoy the Journey:  Road trippin’ is a wonderful adventure where it truly is the journey and not the destination that matters most.  It is important to maximize the opportunity and see as much of the country’s diversity as possible. With all the American movies and songs and books about the joy of the open road, it’s hard to take a normal road trip without huge expectations.  Don’t allow those expectations be the ruler used to measure the enjoyment of the trip.  

Savor the Memories:  The iconic road trip seems to be reserved for young people, heading out with a few buddies and nary a care in the world.  But that is not true!  Memories are there for the taking for travelers of all ages.  Each issue of Montana Woman has a special place in our hearts and our memory banks.  Memories we love to share!

As the MW team puts an issue ‘to bed’, we take a deep breath and jump into our next adventure with true enthusiasm and anticipation.  Being a monthly publication allows endless opportunity to be the first to travel unfamiliar territory and share treasures not yet discovered.  I am honored to share our adventures with you every month in every issue.  Thank you for sharing our journey!

Take Care,


Let's Strutt Your Stuff

Ask the Coach
By Sherri Gerek

Dear Sherri:

My life is a pressure cooker right now.  The company I work for is going through some major changes, and as a result I may soon be transferred or looking for another job altogether.  On the personal front, I am at my wit’s end with the man I’ve been seeing for the past three years.  I had hoped we might be married someday, but the longer we are together the more I see that he is not the right man for me.  We have different priorities, and he is a pessimist while I am the eternal optimist.  Mostly, I want to end the relationship, but I have invested three years already and think I should continue to work to overcome our differences.  So, here I am thinking I had it all figured out when it looks more like my life is unraveling at the seams.  I know I need to make some changes, but fear I will make the wrong decisions and end up with an outcome I am unhappy with.  What advice can you provide?


Dear Unraveling:

Thank you for sharing!  It is understandable that you feel life is a pressure cooker when, undeniably, you are facing the potential for major changes at home and work.  It is only natural for you to feel the way you do.

Often people will stay in circumstances that have become uncomfortable or they have outgrown, because they fear what they may have to go through in order to benefit from change.  Perhaps it is fear of facing a problem that has been overlooked for far too long.  It might involve confronting another individual in some way, finding new ways of “being” that are much different from a person’s current state of being, or learning some new skills.  All change requires growth, and that unknown transition – that place between point A and point B, can be scary!  Good for you on your decision to reach out for assistance.  Fears that are not addressed and overcome will become a block to one’s progress.
Following are three steps to break through a block you may be facing:

Ø     Take a bird’s eye view.   From this vantage point see what needs to happen overall and what needs to happen now.  Instead of becoming overwhelmed by addressing everything in your life– take a look at what is urgent and important.  For example, if you are in a burning building– you don’t stand around contemplating whether or not to rebuild…you tackle what’s urgent and important first! Evacuate the building first, then call the fire department…and so on. Try to keep your situation in perspective so you don’t become bogged down or overwhelmed by change.
Ø     Consider the options.  Assess your situation.  Ask - What and who will be affected by this change?  What happens if I do nothing?  Will the situation be better, worse, or remain the same? How do I feel about those outcomes? Then - If I have an opportunity now to better the outcome or prevent the situation from deteriorating, what will I choose to do? Often,  viewing the potential you have to alter the outcome in a way that is good for you will provide enough incentive for you to move forward.
Ø     Move in the direction you wish to go.  Ask yourself, in order to cooperate with change, What would I need to do right now?  What step can I take? If the transition is a big one, at times a small step in the right direction is all that’s required to put you on the positive path to progress.  From there you can continue to step forward in the direction of change as your life continues to unfold.
Ø     Address the fears you may have.  What is behind the belief you hold about potentially making a wrong decision while knowing that you need a change?  Perhaps it is the belief that is blocking you.  What IF making a decision is exactly what you need to get yourself “un-stuck?”  What will you choose to do?

When we look for the opportunity within every challenge we face, we become open to the possibilities within change.   One of the best skills one can ever hope to master is the ability to adapt early to change.  By accepting change as a normal part of life, life works a little easier.  When resisting and fighting it, change will still come.  The question is – will you be open to it, and ready to adapt when it does?

Call me to explore how to fully live according to your best potential.  406-270-8098    or  I coach women like you on communication, relationships, goal setting, work/life balance, and the power of positive thinking!