Sometimes a message comes to you from your past and you wonder if you will ever solve the problem, you set out to solve years ago.  This post from 2014 reminds me that I am still a multiple even though I am very single.  I have even more email addresses than I did then and I have purchased more property.  I have not matured enough to SETTLE DOWN.  And I guess that’s okay for now.  Seven years and the world I have imagined for myself, where things are simpler is still an illusion.

I am stepping away from one adventure and opening up to experience new things.  Many people my age they are looking for new and different things to do with their time and for me it is about focus.  I want to do less.  I want to be known as one person with one identify, an integrated self, with the wisdom that comes with having experienced multiple lives.  I choose happiness and creativity in whatever form makes me smile.

The same plan … integration.

Nouveau Plan October 2014

One of the things that kind of drives me crazy is the number of identities we have these days.  What I mean is that we have multiple email addresses and multiple phone numbers and multiple addresses that we send things to and live in from time to time.  We carry multiple devices and identification cards and have multiple passwords for multiple favourite websites.  We have become multiples.

Do you wake up each morning wondering where you are and who you have to be that day?  Are you asked for a password or a PIN number more than twice a day? Do you feel like you’re being is consumed by the multiple interactions with machinery that guide you through the day?  It is weird, isn’t it? Mind numbing actually.

Maybe it’s the fact that I have just returned from Hawaii and the Aloha spirit is still in my soul.  I have been fighting the multiple aspect of my identity for almost a year now trying to consolidate who I am and what it means to be me.  No easy task.

Is it even possible to have one address, one email address, one credit card, one password and unity of purpose in our day and age? I am struggling. It is especially important as I research happiness. Me and thousands of others have been doing that for a long time. I saw Hector and the Search for happiness in the theater the other day. It’s a great movie with a great message.

Happiness is experiencing all of your emotions and understanding the contrast. Happiness is a choice. Circumstances are not the cause of happiness because different people experience the same circumstance as happy or sad. It is all relative. So, can you be happy in a world that only knows you through machines and numbers and passwords? It seems you can. All you need is one person to know you and love you anyway.

I am still going to work toward a single identity. I am going to find a password that meets ALL the criteria ANYONE has set for passwords and use it. I am going to wean myself to one email address and change the address on my driver’s license to reflect where I live most of the time. I am working on integrating myself and my identities. It is my Plan Nouveau. How else can you be one with the universe if you are not first one with yourself?

Have a great day.

Thirteen years later and I am not sure how I would describe fun.  I enjoy life.  I like to travel and I enjoy working with people in other places or learning about other cultures.  I am playing the piano more since Covid lock downs forced everyone into their own spaces to find things to do.  I spent some time improving my French which was fun and interesting.  What I noticed was that it was very difficult for me to write under the stress of Covid.  It was weird. And of course, travel was out of the question. With restrictions lifting who knows what to expect.  One thing is for sure.  I am writing again and that is FUN.

Holidays will be weird going forward.  I hope to spend some time at the University of the Virgin Islands in the fall and I do plan to be on the Big Islands of Hawaii over the winter.  I do plan to go back to Alberta to celebrate birthdays with my family later this month.  All of that will be fun for sure.  I find myself also really looking forward to my brother and his wife coming to Nova Scotia for a visit soon and my dear friends from the Edmonton Area will be down in August.  Three of the four visitors I am expecting this summer have never been to Nova Scotia.  It will be fun to show them this delightful place and explore things with them that I might not explore on my own.

Maybe fun is just the things that make you smile.  Let’s go with that.

Holidays August 2008

Tomorrow morning, I leave for a week in Hawaii on the big island.  I am taking my computer to do my blog and my golf clubs to complete a couple of rounds and I plan to spend a lot of time doing very little.  I might read a book or sit by the pool or go for a ride in a helicopter.  It will be fun.  I have been searching lately for a definition of fun.  Other people I know have hobbies and pass times that excite them.  I am not sure what mine is.  I travel.  I golf.  I write.  I entertain.  Are those my FUN??

What do you do for fun, to relax??  I am not sure I even know how to turn it off and just have fun.  We’ll see.  We’ll call this research into the experience of fun.  Hmmm. That may make it work and not play or fun.  I will let you know.  Aloha.

Today is a difficult and confusing day for me. My whole life I have celebrated Canada Day as the day my country was founded. As a social studies major in my Bachelor of Education Degree, I learned more about the people who were here before European contact. It was new to me. We had lived our lives in the firm believe that this was our country, that we, the Europeans, had conquered those who came before us and that we were civilizing this great land.

Today, as more unmarked graves are found near old Residential Schools, I am sobered by the fact that the conquering continued, that people, children, were murdered so that we could ‘civilize’ this country. Today Canada seems tarnished for me and that makes me very sad. I want to be proud, but only a generation ago, Indigenous children were taken from their homes and given to Eurpoean families to raise. Children were taken away and raised in residential schools or day schools far from their families, culture and way of life and it is estimated that more than 4000 of them never came home. I am trying to imagine how frieghtened and confused they must have been and what horros they could have endured. I can’t even begin to do that. It hurts me deeply.

There is an image of Indigenous children that began to circulate after the mass grave of 251 children was located in British Columbia last month. It depicts small children holding hands and the caption reads.. “It’s going to be okay now. They have found us.” It makes me cry everytime I think about it.

I have always been a proud Canadian. I have even run for Parliament … twice. How do I reconcile my long-held version of Canada with this image of children being mistreated and murdered? I am depending on this government to do the right things, what ever they are, to help heal this gaping wound for our Indigenous people and for all Canadians. These children were our children. Our European ancestors married Indigenous people. We could all be mixed blood, Metis people and we should be proud of those stories from our family that point to that possibility and we should grieve together … all of us … for our loss.

For many of us this is truly NEWS. We have lost our innocence and must accept that the Canada we know and love still has untold mysteries for us to discover, many we will not be proud of. We can do better and we will. We MUST.

Off to get my second Covid Vaccine, today. The world is still waiting for me.  I am getting ready to travel again, to explore a new version of an old world … a post covid world.  Should be interesting.

I pulled this blog from 2008.  It is about journaling as a way to record and inform learning.  Studying PULSE requires sensitivity to the tense that someone is speaking.  Journaling and then going back to notice the tense that you use more frequently can help you tune in to the tenses in a conversation which can be used to guide participants to common ground and resolution. 

Journaling is more than that for me.  I know that there have been times in my life where my journal has helped me focus, helped me see things as they were, not as the horrible mess I had created in my imagination. Journaling allowed me to appreciate who I was, what I had and what I was doing and gave me the courage to do more, think more and feel more about the good things in my life.  I came to realize that I can create a better life for myself by imagining a better life for myself and moving toward it. 

Journaling is more than a record of the past.  It becomes a record of the future you are creating with your intentions. Have a good one.  It is a choice you can make. Take Care.

Journals – Creating Reality July 2008

Journaling has been an important part of my life for the past 20 years.  I don’t write every day and I don’t beat myself up if I forget or get too busy and miss a day or a week of entries.  I do not use my journal as a record of my everyday life but as a record of the thoughts that just won’t go away until I see them on paper.  Writing is powerful.  It makes things real and somehow solvable.  Writing about something that is on my mind takes it off of my mind and puts it on a piece of paper somewhere that I can refer to later if I choose to … or not.  At least it is not rolling around in my mind driving me crazy.

Journaling truly keeps me sane.  It also allows me to formulate new ideas and synthesize issues and look at things in a different way.  When we have participants Journal at PULSE we ask them to write.  It doesn’t matter what they write, just write.  Once they have written we ask them to read it over and then notice whether they have written about thoughts, actions or feelings.  We ask them to use coloured dots to categorize their journal by placing red dots by feelings, yellow dots by actions and green dots by thoughts.  It is also possible to use the red for past, yellow for present and green for future categories.  When people do this, they begin to see patterns in their writing that begins to help them understand more about their own predispositions and maybe even Enneagram types.  Are they in the Head Triad thinking about the future, Heart Triad feeling about the past or Body Triad acting in the present?

Journals can be quite revealing and you may even find out more about yourself then you really wanted to face.  A journal is a friend and, like good friend, it doesn’t judge. It only allows you to observe yourself in a reflective safe environment.  Write what you are feeling, doing and or thinking and notice which is more comfortable to write about.  Have fun!!

This blog post from 2008 reminded me how very fortunate I have been in my life.  I have collected interesting people.  I value their contributions to my way of being and I thank them for all that they have given me and for all the ways they continue to influence who I am and what I do.  Since 2008, my collection has grown.  I am so grateful for all the friends, family and colleagues in Calgary and St Albert.  I carry them with me. Back in Halifax for a while now I have added new friends and colleagues and become reacquainted with the wonderful souls who have stayed in my life for the duration of it. When we look up from what we are doing to find who we are, we see it reflected in the people we have surrounded ourselves with.  I love what I see.  Thank you.

The Element of Surprise June 2008

 I was completely caught off guard yesterday when I arrived at my friend Laurie’s place for lunch and 20 or so of my favourite people in the whole world were there waiting in the driveway for me, shouting Happy Birthday.  I was confused.  My birthday is more than a month away.  It didn’t really matter to me why all of these women had gathered.  It was just wonderful to see them.  My daughters, my mum, my sister- in -law and niece, my Tuesday night girls, mediator and business friends, my neighbour.  To my greater surprise, my friend from San Diego and my friend who summers in Saskatchewan had flown in and Carol, my best friend from Lethbridge had left out of town visitors at her house to drive two hours to be there.  It was WONDERFUL.

The Tuesday Night Group had rewritten Hey Jude so that it became – Hey Nance and they sang for me.  There was food and wine and conversations and the most wonderful gifts. Yesterday morning I had been looking for something to journal in and had found an old one with a few empty pages at the back and had used that space to clear some thoughts.  Today I have six new inspiring blank journals to write my next books in.  Wonderful, touching cards and wishes and thoughtful gifts and gift certificates and a magnificent poem by one of my Tuesday Night Girls that made everyone cry.  My daughters had written something on the way from Edmonton in the car that was very, very touching that resulted in more tears being shed.  I love them forever and always.

I am at a loss as to how to thank everyone, how to tell them how much it meant to me to think that people would take time out of their busy lives to gather together like that to help me celebrate being on the planet for a very long time.  THANK YOU.  It hardly expresses it.  Imagine a large swell in the middle of the ocean, one that could create an enormous wave.  That is the feeling I have.  My heart is full of warmth and gratitude and appreciation for what you have all done for me.  My life is richer because of all of you.

Carol Steen said it best, “Nancy couldn’t figure out what to collect so she started to collect interesting women.”  So true and lucky me.  I bet I have a better collection than Oprah.

Back to the serious stuff tomorrow.  THANKS…

Whether you are in Florence, Italy or Halifax, Nova Scotia there is beauty to behold, goodness to be experienced and truth to be gathered through interpretation.  The eye, the ear and the mind of the listener play such an important role in communication because you only see what you are looking for, hear what you and listening for and experience what you expect to unless you are prepared to see, hear and experience more.  

Have a great weekend.  Expect the best of everything. Remain open to the possibility fo beauty, goodness and truth.


In Search of Beauty, Goodness and Truth June 2008

Yesterday we visited the Uffizi Gallery here in Florence.  It was awesome to see the many priceless treasures, the statues and portraits, the tapestries, all interpretations of life in another time.  There are 50 or 100 renditions of Madonna and Child.  Each has a sameness and a uniqueness about it.  Each is an interpretation of a biblical event and yet each is seen and PORTRAYED through the eyes of the interpreter/artist.  I wondered about the differences.  Why was it that the facial features of each of these Madonna’s was different?  It seems as if the artist portrayed, in each instance, his own interpretation of beauty which, I am confident, also portrayed something of himself.

Each of us sees beauty, goodness and truth through our own lens.  As we look at any work of art we see not only the work of art but the artist as well. So, we are interpreters of interpretations as we stand and admire and begin to recognize the artist in the painting or the sculpture.  We see their technique or their style.  We see their preoccupation, their stance, their perspective and we are left to appreciate as observers of observers, adding yet another perspective on the life portrayed.

As PULSE practitioners we are artists.  Our participants are the subjects as they portray to us and to each other their version of events and circumstances.  They are also artists, painting the picture from their own perch or stance.  We are the interpreters, the portraitists, looking for the beauty, truth and goodness in what they have said, providing a PULSE interpretation of or focus on the situation, a new perspective … an appreciative FRAME through which to view their world.

The art in PULSE is in the listening.   In every work of art, it is the artist who adds light and colour to what he sees or hears as significant.  PULSE artists work to remain true to the beauty, goodness and truth of the subjects of the masterpiece.  PULSE practitioners understand that their perspective is one of many and they greatly value the perspective of the subjects of the portraits, understanding that it is truly the only valid perspective, the one that must be honoured in the portrayal.  As they listen, PULSE practitioners focus their subjects on the truth, goodness and beauty in the work of art that is their conversation.

So the style of a PULSE artist/practitioner could be described as appreciative realist, an artist who uses simple, skillful, brush strokes or questions to focus attention; an artist who allows the beauty, goodness and truth of the participants to predominate in their rendition or interpretation of the circumstance; an artist with a simple yet complex approach that encourages individuals to inperpret for themselves, to take the beauty, goodness and truth from the past, see it in the present situation and to search for beauty, goodness and truth in their rendition of the future.

Thank you for listening and adding your own interpretation, taking your own meaning, seeing your own beauty, goodness and truth.  Today we go to Cinque Terra.

This short blog from June 2008 reminds me that there is a loneliness that the internet allows.  WE have all spent so much time on line these past years and yet we do not always feel connected by the waves of information that fill the space around us and are captured and translated into words and images on a screen. Video chats and on-line meetings have actually help me stay connected with family and friends for sure but… What is missing is the human reciprocal caring that is so much better in person. All those years of writing blogs and I know sometimes only my parents and my ex-husband were reading them. I could track the stats.  Now they are not part of the audience so you wonder who will read them now and how will I know?  Thank you to Sharon, Karen, Judy and others who have noticed. I so appreciate hearing from you.

Can You Hear Me Now? June 2008

It is interesting to write blogs into the ether. You don’t really know if anyone at all is reading them or if they are, what they are thinking.  It is the “If a tree falls in the forest question??”  Is there an internet if no one uses it??  Okay… I know that people read this from time to time and my goal is to make it interesting enough that you will come back or suggest a topic or learn something or just smile.

Have you ever noticed how confidence is like a tide?  It seems to ebb and flow.  I am not sure if the moon has anything to do with it but it is an interesting thought.

I love this blog from 2008.  It was an extraordinary day in Florence.  Thought provoking and magical all at the same time. It did seem like a smaller world that day.  Today I am wondering if perhaps Covid has somehow increased the distance between people and has expanded our world.  Are we still a global village?  Travel connected us.  Maybe someday it will again.  Take care everyone.

It’s a Small World June 2008

Yesterday, here in Florence I saw David. THE David by Michelangelo.  It is a magnificent work of art and the marvel of it is in the detail and the size.  It was wonderful and I enjoyed the experience tremendously.  I was even more touched by a plaster cast of a marble statue entitled Dancing Girls, more because of the personal attachment I had to it immediately and even more so once I read the details of the statue.  The two girls in the statue were among the daughters of Lady Charlotte Campbell of Scotland.  Being a Charlotte of Scottish heritage myself (Charlotte Nancy Love, MacKinnon Clan, Isle of Skye) that caught my eye.  And when the girls’ names were a match for my two daughters, I was even more intrigued.  My daughters are also dancers so the whole experience was interesting and made me smile and think about how we may all be repeating the lives of our ancestors in increasingly modern versions …

The other thing that happened that was astounding was that as we were leaving the Accademia, I literally ran into a friend from Edmonton, a PULSE Practitioner and former high school principal like me.  She was in Belgium for the summer visiting her daughter. We were both surprised and spent a few moments catching up and looking for ways to get together when we return.  What are the chances?  What lesson is in a chance meeting like that?  Now I am on the lookout for familiar faces and it seems that everyone I see could be someone I know. 

It is so much fun to be away and see the world from another perspective.  Perspectives on your own world change too, sometimes almost imperceptibly … but they do.  It is a small world.  Being gentle and honest, open and specific and talking with people you encounter comes back to you and makes chance future encounters a joy.  Enjoy.

RENEW has become an important aspect of PULSE thinking, doing and being.  Over the years it has shown up many times as a way to consider change through conversation.  It is a tool used to sharpen the mind, strengthen emotional wellbeing, improve relationships, keep our bodies fit and bring awareness to our trusting souls. I still rely on the RENEW message when I am feeling less than myself. Covid has impacted all of us, restricting us so that we are less than we were before, thinking less, doing less, and being less.  It might be time to RENEW ourselves to get back to the original or find a new and improved version of ourselves to tackle this changing world. Here is how it began.

RENEW – a PULSE Acronym June 2008

Years ago, I was working with dentists to organize a conference for wellness.  One of the presenters was a chiropractor with some good advice on how to stay healthy.  He talked about Nutrition and Rest, about Energy and Exercise and about drinking lots of Water.  “Hmmmmm” I thought…. and asked him “Do they have to be presented in that order or could they be reorganized to spell RENEW!”  He loved the acronym and I think went on to write a book.  It has always stuck with me, too.  Rest, Energy, Nutrition, Exercise and Water are the things you need to maintain health – thinking, doing and being healthy.

Rest – The idea of adequate rest is important to me today.  Three days after a journey through 8 time zones means I really need four more days to regain my temporal equilibrium.  Rest is what Italians and many others do after lunch.  We seem to keep busy all day and fall into bed exhausted at night.  Maybe we could learn something from the siesta approach.  I know that nothing puts me in a better mood or frame of mind then a good night’s sleep. It clears our thoughts, our emotions and our bodies, preparing them for a fresh start each morning.

Energy – What gives you energy?  What puts you in that state of flow where time seems to pass at a different speed?  As a seven it is variety that energizes me.  I could be feeling quite low and when a new idea or project is presented to me, I find energy and can devote hours to it without feeling the least bit fatigued.  Others are energized by order or control or detachment or differentiation, by acknowledgement or a sense of security or an opportunity to help others or by a peaceful outcome.  Knowing ourselves and what energizes us helps all of us maintain our healthy perspective.

Nutrition – Eating is such a personal thing.  We are all on diets.  Some are deliberate.  Others are routine.  Each of us has an eating pattern that is more or less deliberate that nurtures us and provides us with the nutrients that keep our bodies going.  Most of us have more body knowledge than we know or pay attention to.  Sometimes we fight cravings rather than giving in to them and other times we binge and abuse ourselves with our eating and drinking and yet our body continues to find what it needs in what we give it and get rid of the rest.  We are wonderful organisms that renew and regenerate.

Exercise – Fitness is such a personal thing.  What works for one is not always the right prescription for another.  I have friends who exercise hard every day.  I have others who never set aside any time for formal exercise programs.  Each person is fit to a degree that is functional for them and each could run a marathon given the motivation to do so.  When I am looking to stabilize my weight, I do not do physical exercise.  I rest more, drink more water and eat more vegetables and stay as still as possible.  Physical exercise gives me energy and strengthens my muscles but it does not produce weight loss. Our levels of fitness – Body, Heart and Head – are individual.  What is important, I think, is NOT to neglect anyone of the three. Do something each day to increase fitness for your body, your heart and your head.  Notice which is easiest to do and you will know something more about yourself.

Water – We are water.  We need water.  It flushes our systems.  It hydrates our muscles and other tissues and makes us feel good.  We drink it.  We bathe in it and inside and out it helps us maintain our balance with the universe.  “Water is the first medicine.” That is what one of the Elders once told me.  Drink water for health.

RENEW – I know it is time for me to RENEW my commitment to these things, to give my body, my mind and my heart a new lease.  I once read a bumper sticker that said “You cannot turn back the clock but you can wind it up again.”  Summer is a good time for rewinding your body clock and RENEWing your PULSE.

Looking back over the blogs from the past I found this one from June 2008.  I had just arrived in Italy.  Weeks before I had been entertaining my dear friend Austin Gamey and a contingent of his colleagues from Ghana.  WE all had spent a week together in BAnff, Alberta. The world was different then. People traveled. In 2008, I traveled a lot.  Looking at this now I am beginning to understand the impact the state of emergency and the fear that the pandemic has awakened in me. The restrictions changed our lives in many ways.

Today is the first day of summer 2021.  The restrictions are being lifted and the world will once again become an oyster we can explore and enjoy…. SIGH.

Time, Travel and PULSE June 2008

Today I am in Florence. Yesterday and the day before blended into one very long day. Twelve hours of travelling and eight hours of time change equals confusion for biological clocks. And yet there is so much travel these days. Business people aboard jumbo jets crossing the ocean like they were crossing the street. I have to wonder about the effect that is having on business decisions and relationships. 

When the Africans were in Canmore a few weeks ago. I watched them struggle as they worked to reset their clocks to meet the demands of learning. Now as I adjust, I am even more aware of how they must have felt. And I think to myself about how walking a mile or travelling across time zones in someone else’s shoes is easier if you have in fact had at least similar experiences. 

Here we are talking about time zones as they exist in the world. The same can be said for the past, present, future time zones of the PULSE frame. Once awareness of the existence of time zones of understanding is experienced empathy is closer. Parties are better able to move to Empathy if they have been there before. Seeing the world as someone else might takes courage and curiousity and is not as automatic as we may think. This is especially true if we have never had any experiences of our own to draw on. Hence the skepticism of first time PULSE conversation participants and the conviction of those who have travelled the conversation time zones. 

Thanks to Marjorie for posting this for me. More tomorrow. Today I see David.

June 3rd 2008