Allegories & Anecdotes

Coach’s Challenge for 5/20/12 “Separation”

Good day, team. This week’s challenge is about separation. That is, how we sometimes separate ourselves from others, including family, co-workers and friends. All of us experience this sense of being separate from time to time. Sometimes it’s caused by a succession of failures, too much...

Read More

Coach’s Challenge for 4/8/12 “Spring”

Good day, team. This past weekend, all of the daffodils finally bloomed out at our property in the Columbia River Gorge. It makes me so happy to see them. Although the weather changes frequently at this time of year — light snow, hail, rain, sun — once all...

Read More

Coach’s Challenge for 10/4/10 “Quotations”

Good day team, Since I'll be on vacation over the next few weeks, I wanted to share some food for thought to inspire you to create your own weekly challenge. I've listed some of my favorite quotations below for that purpose. One of my aims before I...

Read More

Coach’s Challenge for 8/30/10 “Wealth”

Good day, team, This week I had an unusual experience that is the basis for the coach’s challenge. Mid-week I traveled to southern California to work with a client company. When I arrived at the Residence Inn where I was staying, I was informed that they were overbooked. I could tell that the clerk at the front desk was embarrassed as he handed me a letter stating that they were sorry about the inconvenience, but would pay for me to stay at another Marriott not far from their hotel. I had already had a long day. It was 102 degrees outside, and I had just walked a fair distance with my briefcase and roller bag. As I walked back to my rental car, I thought, "Wait a minute, I don't want to go to a different hotel." I noticed the letter had been signed by the Residence Inn manager and included his phone number. I called him and asked, "What gives? I'm a Marriott Rewards member, and this has never happened to me before." To his credit, he asked if I was still at the hotel and then came out to meet me, shook my hand and apologized. After explaining why this had happened, he asked if he could give me 10,000 Marriott Rewards bonus points and pay for me to stay across the street at The Four Seasons. I was shocked. Having known The Four Seasons in San Francisco, I was amazed that I was being sent to a 5-star hotel for free and immediately said yes. As I pulled up to The Four Seasons,  I saw a Rolls Royce and a Ferrari parked at the entrance. I suddenly wasn't sure if I was going to be high falutin enough to stay here. But I parked my car and entered through the front sliding doors, immediately greeted by four doormen falling all over themselves to offer me assistance. When I went to the front desk and presented my letter from the manager of the Residence Inn requesting that they give me a room and breakfast at his expense, I was treated like a queen. It was as if they couldn't do enough for me. After the desk clerk explained where the bar and restaurant were and gave me a full description of the hotel spa—"the largest hotel spa in California," he said proudly—I wandered though the expansive lobby to the elevators and ascended to the right floor. Upon entering my room, I was immediately impressed by the original art on the walls, comfy furniture, huge bed, marble floors, giant bathtub and double shower, phone in the loo, gorgeous silk drapery, and especially the quiet. It was oh, soooo quiet. "I could get used to this," I thought and immediately changed into my swimsuit so I could go for a dip in the pool. As I passed the mirrored doors on the closet, I caught a glimpse and realized that my faithful old Speedo was looking pretty ragged. Was it going to be good enough for the pool scene at The Four Seasons? Oh well, I thought. The body in the suit is pretty old and faithful too, and it's probably not Four Seasons material either, but we've got what we've got and off I went. I got lost trying to find the outdoor pool in the maze of the largest hotel spa in California, but when I got there, I was relieved to see only a half dozen people including two pool attendants. No one seemed to be interested in what I was doing or wearing, so I gleefully jumped into the pool, swam 10 glorious laps and plopped myself down on a lounge chair to take in the last rays of sun on a blazing hot day. Lying there, I couldn't help but overhear what the pool attendants were saying. "What a gig this is, man. We get paid to do almost nothing except set up lounge chairs with pillows and extra large towels for the guests, serve them drinks, and make sure they know where the bathrooms are. And there's hardly anyone here, so it's easy to just listen to my i-Pod, or text my friends or hang out. Pretty cool!" The other attendant replied, "Yeah, it's a far cry from what's happening in Pakistan, I mean, there was this picture in the paper today of these people who were just on their knees praying that someone would give them some rice or anything to eat. And when I think of the food this hotel throws away every day, it seems crazy to me that some people have so much and some have so little." I pondered their comments and realized that something in me has never been comfortable with excess. I was certainly enjoying the lap of luxury I had been dropped into, but I also realized that I'm perfectly content with far less and in some ways, enjoy making the most of what I have. I feel very lucky about all the abundance in my life, and as much as I appreciate the finer things in life, I don't really need them to feel content. In fact, I felt a little uncomfortable with all the excess I saw around me. I could also see that I had been given an opportunity to enjoy these finer things for one brief period of time, and I was grateful for it. Life bestows gifts upon us when we least expect them, and we ought to feel very grateful for them when they happen. This week, see where your life is abundant. Do you often wish that you had more? Do you feel that your life is more about scarcity rather than abundance? What are the little things in your life that make you really happy? Are you constantly striving for something better, something finer, something different? Are you grateful for what you have? We do live in the richest country in the world, and there's no doubt that we have more than most. But if we can't appreciate what we have, then we live like emotional paupers. Craving is a sickness that breeds unhappiness and greed and can turn the most blessed person into a beggar. There's nothing sweeter than seeing someone appreciate just what they have. Consider that sweetness and try experiencing some of it this week. Have a good week! Kathleen Kathleen Doyle-White Pathfinders Coaching (503) 296-9249 © Copyright 2010 Pathfinders Coaching, Scout Search, Inc., all rights reserved.

to feel very grateful for them when they happen. This week, see where your life is abundant. Do you often wish that you had more? Do you feel that your life is more about scarcity rather than abundance? What are the little things in your life that make you really happy? Are you constantly striving for something better, something finer, something different? Are you grateful for what you have? We do live in the richest country in the world, and there's no doubt that we have more than most. But if we can't appreciate what we have, then we live like emotional paupers. Craving is a sickness that breeds unhappiness and greed and can turn the most blessed person into a beggar. There's nothing sweeter than seeing someone appreciate just what they have. Consider that sweetness and try experiencing some of it this week. Have a good week! Kathleen Kathleen Doyle-White Pathfinders Coaching (503) 296-9249 © Copyright 2010 Pathfinders Coaching, Scout Search, Inc., all rights reserved.

Read More