Nan S. Russell
Author & Speaker

All posts in July, 2015

hurdlesOne of my work favorites is crossing items off my to-do list. At the end of the day, it feels great to know you’ve made progress, resolved a problem, dealt with a difficult challenge, or accomplished an objective. Unfortunately, too often we find ourselves without those feelings. Instead, frustration, bureaucracy, and unresponsiveness have thwarted our well-being.

The person you’ve been waiting to get an answer from doesn’t respond, yet again; the bureaucratic maze to find the right person feels like “running the gauntlet;” approval of the last project element is stuck in organizational politics; or the quick input you need from another department gets pushed aside by “more important” priorities.

But, people who are winning at working get results despite work-hurdles. Whether it’s (continue reading →)

Winning at Working 

cozypuppyI like cozy. I like cozy mysteries, cozy places, cozy food, cozy days or nights, and cozy people. It struck me the other day how much I like cozy after spending a few days devoid of that feeling. Away on business, my week was busy airports, packed airplanes, sketchy hotels, loud restaurants, big cities, and huge conferences centers; none of it cozy.

Granted, it was business I chose to do. But returning home I was craving gentle and comfortable. Nestled in front of the television with my husband, catching up on missed shows with a glass of red wine and a store bought pizza, I could feel the weariness dissipate as the cozy warmth of home, family, and the familiar surrounded me.

What is cozy? For me, it’s feeling okay for awhile not to be doing anything, nurtured by the warmth of returning inner-energy. For me, cozy has no hint of others’ expectations or even my own. It’s a place where I can wear a favorite sweater with a hole in it, snuggle under a kitschy fleece blanket, take a nap, read anything, or not talk to anyone if I don’t want to.

I need cozy places partially because I’m an introvert and they help me re-energize. But, I also need cozy people whose genuineness and ease draws me in. With these people, there’s no pretext, judgment, or expectations of whom either of us are suppose to be or how we’re suppose to act when we’re together.

My cozy-list of friends and family is small. These are people I don’t need to have a clean house (or perfect life) for. With them, I can be angry, sad, or frustrated; crazy, silly, or inept. I can fail or succeed; share fears or joys; express worries or doubts and it’s all okay. These people enable me to be me without the masks.

While I like cozy, the reality is there’s a problem with it. (continue reading →)

In the Scheme of Things