FIVE WAYS TO BE YOUR OWN GLUE - 1010 Park Place
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FIVE WAYS TO BE YOUR OWN GLUE

PHOTOGRAPH ©BRENDA COFFEE, 2018
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Over margaritas and quesadillas my girlfriends and I reflected on some of the difficult times in our lives. Referring to a particularly stressful time one of my friends matter-of-factly stated she’d “lost her glue,” to which I replied, “I can identify. My glue died,” referring to my husband, James. While our individual stories prompt serious conversation, the real question for all of us—at one time or another—is how do we change what’s not working in our lives?

How do we get our mojo back? More importantly, how do we become our own glue?

The glue, or anchor, that keeps us on the right track is one of our most essential survival tools. For me that glue was James and God, but when I look at my life—before I knew either one—I realize I’ve always been my own glue.

From day one I was a survivor. Six-weeks premature, I was the first Rh-negative baby to survive a complete blood transfusion. My friends have always said I have guts. My glue—what strengthens me—is a combination of the ying and yang of guts and neccesity, a sassy determination and my moral code. After James died I was still the same gutsy, determined woman, but I had to rewrite the script for the next chapter of my life.

Before any of us can do that, we need to take inventory of what is and isn’t working in our lives.

A severe headache, resulting in temporary blindness, forced one of my friends to assess her life. When her doctor asked about her stress levels, she listed family problems, a diet dominated by sugar, fats and fast foods, even rush hour traffic. Who would have thought that by leaving home a little earlier she would miss the tortuous freeway commute and have time to work out, which motivated her to change her diet and lose 11 pounds? While none of these things have changed her family problems, they’ve allowed her to view them with fresh eyes and a renewed spirit. Brava girlfriend! You are inspiring!

Stress is a reality of life. It’s the fly in the ointment, an unwanted ingredient in our glue. The challenge comes with how we manage our stress. Here are five things that will strengthen us and help us be our own glue:

  • BE YOUR OWN BEST FRIEND: Most of us know when we’ve gone down the wrong path. Don’t wait for permission before you make changes to your life. Act in your own best interest.
  • FOCUS ON THE SOLUTION NOT THE PROBLEM: Step back and look at the big picture. How did you get here, and what’s the best way to fix or lessen the problem?
  • KNOW WHEN IT’S TIME TO ASK FOR HELP: We may think we’re Wonder Woman, but none of us always find our way out of the maze. Find a counselor or a trusted friend who can help you think through your options.
  • DON’T MOVE ON WITHOUT HEALING: Just because you don’t work through grief and anger doesn’t mean it’s not there. Resolve feelings and issues before they stack up and become cumulative.
  • THIS TOO SHALL PASS: Visualize the life you want. It may motivate you to make needed changes which lead to new doors that open for you.

Girlfriends are a strong, supportive glue. Our love for God—and one another—is a powerful, healing combination. Whether you’re commenting on my blogs or sharing margaritas with me, I give thanks to all my girlfriends for leading the way!

Love, Brenda

20 Comments

  • Reply Sheilah Renninger February 10, 2018 at 8:39 am

    Inspiring as always! Thank you Brenda!

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace February 10, 2018 at 5:46 pm

      Hi Sheila, Thank you! I think of you so often and wonder how you’re doing. I know you’ve taken some time off from social media. If you’re so inclined, touch base with me on IG and update me. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Rena February 10, 2018 at 8:59 am

    I love this! I need to take stock because stress is definitely walking beside me every single day. I know I need to learn to ask for help, but honestly I wouldn’t know who to ask.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace February 10, 2018 at 6:00 pm

      Hi Rena, Stress has all of us in its grip, I think. One of my best go-to tools are some of Belleruth Naperstek’s Guided Imagery audios. I listen to her Affirmations on Stress and/or Depression every morning as I’m getting dressed. Over time her words make a huge difference in everything from preparing for surgery, grief, panic attacks, depression. I will be doing a blog post about her soon. In the meantime, here’s a link to her site. https://www.healthjourneys.com She’s very well thought of. Yes, we have to be careful who we seek out for help. I know what you mean. We need to admire how they handle and cope with things in their own lives and trust their input. If it’s a therapist you’re seeking, you might ask your family physician for some references. At the very least, consider downloading one of Belleruth Naperstek’s audios to your computer/iPad or phone. If it’s on one, it will cross over to all of them, and you can listen to them anytime. Sending you my best and lots of love, Brenda

  • Reply Hilda Smith February 10, 2018 at 8:59 am

    You are wonderful Brenda..like you love my girlfriends xx

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace February 10, 2018 at 6:00 pm

      Thank you, Hilda! Love seeing you here! xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Janice Wald February 10, 2018 at 10:31 am

    Hi Brenda,
    Thanks for the inspiration. I have also heard “This too shall pass.” What if the party in power keeps getting reelected? Hard to believe “This too shall pass” when I know that’s possible.
    Janice

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace February 10, 2018 at 6:02 pm

      Hi Janice, LOL! Yes, there’s always something in our lives we have to buck up and deal with! Even with a sitting President, however, “This too shall pass.” Thank you, Brenda

  • Reply Mary Lovstad February 10, 2018 at 10:33 am

    Great blog — my mom used to say “This too will pass” and now I say it my kids too.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace February 10, 2018 at 6:04 pm

      Hi Mary, Isn’t it funny how we catch ourselves being like our mothers? I don’t think their words of wisdom meant as much to us then as they do now, but obviously it rang true enough, or you wouldn’t be passing it along to your children. Love your comment! Thank you, Brenda

  • Reply Joan Stommen February 10, 2018 at 11:05 am

    I needed this, Brenda! So well written. I have both girlfriends and a therapist…but still feel glueless at times. Maybe it’s wanting a companion to share life with that I confuse with no more anchor (as with you, my husband was.)
    This gives me more insight to trusting and believing in myself! Thanks!

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace February 10, 2018 at 6:10 pm

      I’m happy to know this post helped you in some way, Joan. On a gut level and even on a shallower level than that, we instinctively know what’s right for us. Even though our husbands are no longer with us, as Glinda the Good Witch in the Wizard of Oz said, “You’ve always had the power.” Believe in yourself and your instincts, act in your own best interests and don’t be afraid of making the wrong decision. Most decisions, if bad, can be rectified or aren’t really that important. We’re smart women, Joan! I’m betting you’re a great anchor! We just need to believe in ourselves! Thanks for your comment! xox, Brenda

  • Laureen Satabe
    Reply Laureen Satabe February 10, 2018 at 2:44 pm

    Loved this one; thank you, Brenda. <3

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace February 10, 2018 at 6:11 pm

      Thank you, dear Laureen! I love you, Brenda

  • Reply Kona February 10, 2018 at 4:25 pm

    Been really ill this winter and after four weeks I still feel depleted and “glueless”. My mojo is in hibernation but I know exactly what I have to do…because it is always what I do not want to do. I am weak as a kitten but doc suggested doing small bits of exercise, riding a recumbent bike for a whole five
    minutes…baby steps. Funny how hard it can be to force ourselves to take baby steps. Ah, but along comes Brenda to remind me. Girlfriend I look forward to another margarita lunch and your wit. Till then…a step.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace February 10, 2018 at 6:17 pm

      Kona, Oh, dear! And here I thought you were trying to keep the germs away from Mom!! Gaining our strength back is a chicken and the egg thing: We don’t feel like exercising, even for five minutes, but exercise is what will build us and our immune system back, again. I’m not crazy about flossing my teeth, but I know as I get older, the only teeth I’ll keep are the ones I floss! Steps… Yes, Steps… And if you took too many steps one today, don’t use it as a reason not to take some steps tomorrow. Persistence, girlfriend! xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Mamavalveeta03 February 12, 2018 at 1:26 am

    I think we sometimes lose our glue at different fazes of our lives, whether it’s years of motherhood and putting others first, or being an empty nester and feeling like your purpose is gone, to losing your spouse and having to face life on that porch swing by yourself. The reminder that I keep getting is “There is no later!”

    I’ve made a conscious decision to try to connect more with friends and even cultivate new relationships through community activities, like a book club, or a knitting group. We don’t do so well when we try to go it alone! I guess what I’m trying to say is, sometimes we need to borrow a little glue until we get our own.

    XOX Val

  • Reply 1010ParkPlace February 12, 2018 at 12:24 pm

    That’s brilliant, Val. I never would have thought of that, but you’re right. Borrowing a little glue until we get our own! There a many ways we lose our purpose… which is another way of saying glue, and knowing we have Book Club, Tuesdays at 7pm, gives us something to look forward to and contribute. Cultivating new friends is smart as well. Yesterday I was talking with a woman I don’t know well. She reminded me that sometimes we have to make the first move, even in old friendships. That doesn’t mean the other person wouldn’t like to get together with us. Most of us go about our lives out of habit, good and bad. What a great contribution to this discussion, Val. Thank you! xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Chuky Reyna February 12, 2018 at 3:51 pm

    Amazing post!

    • Reply Brenda Coffee February 13, 2018 at 9:20 am

      Thank you, sweet lady! I appreciate your stopping by to read and leave me a comment.

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