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Author Archive for Susan McNeal Velasquez

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

A Mother for All Seasons Mother’s Day is a holiday that brings the opportunity to reflect on the continuum that gives life to the word mother. I have a mother. I am a mother. Three of my daughter’s are mothers. I am a grandmother. I could easily become a great-grandmother in the next few years. […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

Have a Heart   This week, as I read our letters to the editor, I noticed that our reputation as a hospitable, tolerant, free-spirited environment seems to be getting a bit tarnished. At the same time, the wondrous opportunity to experience heart-felt connections was also validated. Is this simply different points of view colliding? Is […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

Quick Exit From Dramaland   Change is in the air. At least in my life. Everything from upgrading my computer to having  my web host decide to close his business. Even though I am in the personal growth field, the truth is that I don’t like change very much. At least not changes that are […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

Creating A Social Future   My eldest daughter, Lisa, shared a profound insight about the differing parenting experiences between herself and her sister Jennica. “Mom, I realize that I have been a lazy parent in a lot of ways, simply because I could get away with it since my children fall within the ‘norm’ in […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

It’s About Time   Time has become a speed freak. In fact, I suspect it has been taking professional driving lessons and thinks my weekdays are a NASCAR race. It’s Monday and then I blink and it’s Friday. This has been going on for quite awhile now. Truth is, I need five full days to […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

Lessons from Whitney Houston   A few days after Whitney Houston’s death, I received a phone message from someone who wanted to express her sadness and concern about the probability that prescription drugs played a part in her death. She believes many women who use antidepressants are less aware of the dangers they face if […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

The Verb of Love Valentines Day is all about love. In our aggressive society, it is easy to ignore this opportunity to let down and enjoy the small pause points that come when we participate in the art of celebration. If we turn love into a verb, it has the power to transform the quality […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

The Fulfillment Factor Have you noticed that if you attempt to care deeply about everyone and everything, you end up stretched so thin that you become brittle, numb and overwhelmed? On the other hand, if you decide to live within a closed, overly protective attitude, your wellspring of curiosity, positive anticipation, and willingness to engage, […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

The Importance of Doing Nothing   As this new year  comes out of the gate, my personal consulting work is bringing me aspects of life that can’t be fixed or figured out with a quick solution or a fast answer. Often, all that is appropriate is to just show up. Be there. Listen. First, hearing […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

Transformation   Remember when the transformer action figures were the current got-to-have toys for boys? I would watch my grandson twist and turn limbs, torsos and heads with a surety and speed that was mind-boggling. “How did you do that?” “Easy!” he would say. When I tried, I would randomly bend and twist different parts […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

Reading is a pleasure that I’ve enjoyed since I was a child.

My mother was unable to say no to door-to-door salespeople and as a result we had an entire series of encyclopedia’s that came with a bonus set of fairy tales from many different lands.

I devoured them. I would close the door to my room; lay out 25 cents worth of candy that I bought from the local candy store with part of my allowance, and dive into the stories.

Hours were spent with characters that faced dangerous challenges that required tapping into their instinctual wisdom and finding the courage to make the right choices.

There were gross punishments for greed, hatred, meanness, stupidity and laziness. True love and happily-ever-after came in surprising and gratifying ways for the heroes and terrible consequences for the wicked, the cruel, the selfish and those that lacked kindness and compassion for the downtrodden.

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

Rekindling Holiday Magic   The holiday card that I found the other day at the Laguna Colony Company on Forest Avenue said:  “Christmas Therapy Group.” It pictured a caricature of a psychiatrist sitting in front of a semi-circle that included Santa, Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Reindeer, and an Elf. The dialogue bubble over Santa’s […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

Slip-Sliding Away   My mother is in her 90th year and lives in Houston, Tex. Three weeks ago, she had her appendix removed, spent three days in intensive care and seven more in the hospital regaining her ability to breathe without a ventilator. From there, she was moved to a skilled nursing facility where she […]

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

Signs of Halloween are cropping up all over Laguna. I live in the Oak and Brook Street area of town, which becomes “Halloween Central” when the decorations are all in place.

I have to admit that for the past few years, I’ve only participated half-heartedly. I could blame it on the economy or too many surprises of the not-so-thrilling kind, but frankly, I just wasn’t willing to put out the effort.

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Wisdom Workout

Wisdom Workout

The Problem Express The topic of how to care without becoming overwhelmed by problems that aren’t yours has surfaced more than a few times in my consulting work lately. Let’s take a look at this common dilemma. Check and see if you are being held hostage by your capacity to care. Caring about others is […]