Create One Hour (or more) for YOU

I’ve talked with numerous people this week who are tired, frazzled, and just plain pooped. And guess what? I’m one of them. I had more on my plate than usual this week and I can feel it. My body feels heavy and overall just worn out. I had plans for the weekend that I’ve already cancelled because I just need some time, space, and quiet to relax, rest, and recharge. Alone.

Susan Grace Carroll, Life Coach, Bend, OR

I know exactly what this will do for me. After slowing down and sleeping mightily, my batteries will be recharged and invigorated. Ready for what’s next. But only after I honor what my body is telling me it needs. If I don’t listen and do something about it, my body will only yell back at me more.

What do you need this weekend? Really need?

Now go honor the bright shiny soul that you are and give it to yourself.

Leave a comment on the blog below if you’d like.

If you think, “I know one friend who would really like this”, please forward it to them.

If you found this helpful, let me know. I’d love to hear from you.

~ Susan

Get Outside and Nurture Your Life

A deeper kind of rest

Hi there! How ARE you?

How has July been? Did you make and changes?

I’ve spent the last month learning what it’s like to rest on a different level. One of Martha Beck’s mantras is to rest until you play and play until you rest. She means that literally. Life shouldn’t be hard and you’re either playing or resting.

Right now I’m resting…

Deeply. Susan Grace Carroll, Life Coach, Bend, OR

I have been goal driven my entire life. There was always something to be working on, striving for, an achievement to attain.


That’s how your life has meaning and you leave your mark on the world, right? You set goals, roll up your sleeves, get to work, until you achieve that damn goal.


It wasn’t until I stopped writing my weekly newsletter and stopped leading my Life Coaching Meetup group, focused only on going to my job at REI and Physical Therapy (to help me re-align and balance my body), did I start to get a feel for what deeply resting might really mean.

At first my mind didn’t like it so much. You “have” to be working on something. You “have” to be doing something more, it said.

I gently reminded it that no, actually, I didn’t.

As I type this, I’m sitting watching a hummingbird out my window taking a very looooooooooong drink of sugar water at the feeder. THAT is what I am meant to be doing right now. Enjoying what is right in front of me. Not striving toward anything.

I think I’m starting to get the hang of this less is more idea on a whole new level. I’ve always believed it intellectually but until I actually allowed myself to be in that space, I didn’t really feel the ease and beauty of what it’s like to not be working towards something all the time.

Okay, you could say my goal is to align my body with Physical Therapy right now, and you’d be right. I am diligently going twice a week, stretching and strengthening something almost daily, but (but) I haven’t put a time limit on my recovery. It may be next week, or it might take 2 more months. I don’t know.

Although I’d love to have everything feeling fabulous today (oh wow that would be amazing), Ive settled into this deep kind of place where the universe is helping me work things out in the perfect time. Even if it isn’t my idea of perfect time. If you think I don’t sometimes get frustrated when things feel better then worse again, you’d be wrong, but my overall sense is one of peace and acceptance of where I am on this journey.

I spoke with another mentor the other day and talked with her about my lack of wanting to do and how wonderful it felt. She said she’s never heard me sound so relaxed. My voice exuded peace and calm. That was nice to hear and a confirmation that I am in the right place and space right now.

So what does that mean for you?

Well, I’ve decided to take another month off from writing this newsletter. I’ve promised myself to journal more about what’s going on with me in my life. To see what shows up.

Of course I’d like to leave you with something to ponder for the month of August.

What does deep rest look like for you? Do you even have any idea?

Do you get enough of it in? If not, what can you get rid of or do differently to incorporate it?

I cannot tell you how much I have enjoyed not doing. It’s like I’ve come home to myself even more. It’s one of the best gifts I have ever given myself. Permission to just be. I wish I could give you a formula for how I’m doing this but I can’t. I don’t have one (other than the giving myself permission formula).

It was more of a decision I made. My true self made. My soul made. And my heart and soul told my brain what was most important right now and there was nothing to fear.

I can tell you I’m probably overall more relaxed than I can ever remember. And in this crazy world of ours, I see that as amazing.

The world will completely continue without your input and effort I promise. It’s in the being that we do. You just have to be willing to be and allow that to be enough.

See you in September.

Leave a comment on the blog below, or email me,

If this struck you and you think, “I know one friend who would really like this”. Please forward it to them.

If you found this helpful, let me know. I’d love to hear from you.

~ Susan

Get Outside and Nurture Your Life

Sometimes you've got to change it up

I’ve been sending out my newsletter weekly for 3 years now. THREE YEARS.

I so enjoy it. We are all one big human family as we navigate this crazy life together. I love getting responses from you about what resonates. Often some of you will write and tell me I’m in your head and either thinking what you are, or having the same experience. It is always good to be reminded how deeply connected we all are. We really do go through the same emotional experiences even if the outside circumstances look different for each of us.

Ah- life is truly universal!

Susan Grace Carroll, Life Coach, Bend, OR

The last few weeks a shift has taken place in me (though I can’t quite put my finger on it). I feel this need to take a hiatus (a sabbatical if you will) from sending out my newsletter for about a month. The month of July to be exact.

I don’t really know exactly where it’s coming from or why. It makes no logical sense really.

The universe is mysterious like that. But I have full faith in its process and know that when I feel this strongly about something I need to pay attention. I haven’t mentioned it but this past month I’ve been in physical therapy for treatment of a neck, shoulder, hip, foot issue I’ve had for a few years. As they’ve been helping me unwind the patterns in my physical body that aren’t working I’ve noticed that not only is that shifting, my soul is trying to speak to me more and more about what needs to be healed.

Our bodies hold on to emotional wounds. Whether created by others or our own minds. That process of discovery needs the fewest distractions and I need to honor it.

But I don’t want to leave you hanging. Because if you’re a ponderer like me, you need some good stuff to chew on, to let percolate.

So I’ve got a question for you to sit with and do what you will for the next month.

What changes do you need to make?

This is an open-ended question.

This could be external. Or internal.

In your way of doing. Or being.

It’s not a light question. Or it could be.

Only your deepest self at the soul level knows if something needs to change.

My soul told me to step away from my newsletter for a month.

What is yours telling you?

I’ll check back in August.

Happy Pondering!

Leave a comment on the blog below, or email me,

If this struck you and you think, “I know one friend who would really like this”. Please forward it to them.

If you found this helpful, let me know. I’d love to hear from you.

susan small sig 05:14

Get Outside and Nurture Your Life

Give Yourself a Rest

I was on a flight a couple of years back and the man next to me was obviously doing work on his laptop. It looked important. Yes, I was sneaking glances over at him while he was typing in numbers from a piece of paper on to a spreadsheet on his computer. It was interesting to watch him because he kept falling asleep. He would be happily typing along and within a few seconds, his fingers would stop tapping and drift across the keyboard. Then I’d look at his face and notice his eyelids slowly droop down. Next came the chin drop to the chest, followed by the lean of his head to one side.

Susan Grace Carroll, Life Coach, Bend, OR

He’d remain that way a few moments, then jerk back awake shocked he’d been asleep in the first place. He’d resume typing, then guess what? He’d start the same process all over again.

I silently wondered how accurately he was working. Would he find mistakes later? Have to redo some things?

I almost, almost leaned over and tell him about the research out there that shows when we try to work on things when we’re that tired, we make a ton of mistakes, are less efficient, and then are still tired when it’s over.

I wanted to suggest he take a cat nap. It was pretty obvious that’s what his body was telling him. Heck, he could even set an alarm to wake up and continue working before the flight was over.

We all get tired like that sometimes. Our body will tell us when we’ve had enough. Maybe we’re sleepy and have fuzzy brain, maybe we’re irritable, maybe we can’t remember our own name. Our bodies are full of important information if we’ll just pay attention then actually DO something helpful with that info.

Why not give yourself a rest? It might not be a nap that’s needed per say. It could be though. Or a walk, or switching to a new activity to give your brain a break from what you’re working on. It could even be for a few days.

Maybe, just maybe, giving yourself a rest might actually enable you to get things done more efficiently, with less or no mistakes, AND you’d feel better.

Can you guess where my vote goes?

Give yourself a rest. I promise, if you are a woman, you are already doing more than enough.

Leave a comment on the blog below, or email me,

If this struck you and you think, “I know one friend who would really like this”. Please forward it to them.

If you found this helpful, let me know. I’d love to hear from you.

susan small sig 05:14

Get Outside and Nurture Your Life

Slowing Down and Resting

Two awesome events happened in my town 48 hours apart this week. First, the Internet was down for the WHOLE day. And, we got our first snow followed by freezing rain, which closed schools. What I love about both of these events is that it reminds us we aren’t in control and mother nature/the universe is. squirrel in snow

When the Internet goes down it’s a big thing. Many of us spend a lot of time communicating both personally and professionally on our devices. While in and of itself, it isn’t a bad thing, we can easily get sucked into it and miss other amazing areas of our life.

When the weather makes the roads too dangerous to drive, we have the opportunity to stay at home and play with our kids, if we have them, or take a nap if it’s needed, read a book, organize a closet… all those things we might not do because of our crazy over-booked lives.

This is why I never see the Internet going down or Mother Nature affecting normal activities as a bad thing. It makes us stop and pay attention. And often, it’s important stuff we need to pay attention to, like slowing down and resting. We live in an over-stressed, over-worked, sleep-deprived country. What I find amazing is that when something like a snowstorm hits, most everyone gets upset that it messes up their day and they can’t get things done. As if having to shift gears and slow down is bad thing.

While out walking my dog Elvis this morning, I watched a little girl come running out of her house in full snow gear with her sled, ready to play in the white fluffy flakes. She was one excited ball of energy. I got to watch her joy, and feel my own little kid energy, as I walked down the road with quarter-sized flakes thickly falling from the sky silently but oh so beautifully.

Slowing down and resting helps us to rejuvenate. When we’re rejuvenated, we’ve got more energy for, and excitement about, living our normal daily lives. And who doesn’t want to feel that as they go about their day.

So the next time the Internet goes down or some weather affects your normal routine, see it as a gift, not a burden. Slow down and rest. Heck, why not put a designated rest day in your schedule regularly. I can almost guarantee you’ll feel better, more relaxed, and ready to continue with your normal life when it’s over. I wouldn’t be surprised to find you both healthier and happier too.

Leave a comment on the blog below, or email me,

If this struck you and you think, “I know one friend who would really like this”. Please forward it to them.

If you found this helpful, let me know. I’d love to  hear from you.

susan small sig 05:14

Get Outside and Nurture Your Life

Life Outside the Fast Lane

It seems that everyone is in a hurry. We speed through our day to get everything done on our to-do list, then we get up and do it all again the next day. Because things can happen fast we assume they should always happen fast. Life outside the fast lane What’s so crazy is that we as humans have not evolved as a species to physically keep up with all the speed we have created.

How do I know this?

Because people I talk to are tired. Burning the candle at both ends tired. Tired of keeping up with their schedule. Tired of trying to keep up with the latest technology gadget, tired of saying yes when they really want to say no, and tired of being connected to everyone everywhere 24/7.

I know what that feels like. I’ve been there. I’ve filled my days so full that sleep was the only reprieve from life.

Sleep as a reprieve from life…

How healthy does that sound? It wasn’t. I can assure you. I had sleep deprivation, headaches, and gastrointestinal issues to go with my crazy busy life and it wasn’t fun.

I fell into the trap. Pushing myself harder and harder to achieve more, better, faster.

What was I trying to prove? That I could make it in the world and be a success? A success at what? Speed?

We are a nation suffering from a lack of fulfillment.

We are killing ourselves from the inside out because we are trying to find happiness outside of ourselves.

It’s no surprise that often when weekends come we want to slow down our pace, do less, sleep more. Quality overrides quantity. We have been taught that you must work really hard and drive yourself into the ground, and then you can rest. And we bought it. Thinking that’s the way it had to be done.

We all have a natural rhythm or pace that feels right for us.

We haven’t been encouraged to discover it for ourselves and follow it. Which is really a tragedy. Because when we each step out as who we are moving at our own perfect place, creativity abounds, epic stuff gets done. Time stands still.

I know this because the crowds I run in are doing exactly that. Loving their life, working at their pace, on fire, so filled up and passionate about what they are doing that their energy could light a community. They go to bed tired but fulfilled, and ready to go the next day. Not exhausted and depleted, wishing there was never an alarm to wake up to again.

I Stepped out of the fast lane.

Not only was I tired of keeping up, I couldn’t keep up. Then I decided to stop trying to keep up. I felt less tired. And the headaches went away. And the gastrointestinal issues did too. Feeling rested most mornings and invigorated by my day ahead is what lights me up. Helping people find their own natural rhythm does too.

Your Turn: What's one step you can or have taken to step out of the fast lane? Leave a comment below, or email me,

I am grateful to be able to spend some time with you virtually today. Thank you.

As always, take from here what works for you, share with your friends if you think they might benefit, and the rest you can leave behind.

Bloom On!

Seeds of Kindness Bloom and Bloom and Bloom…

Image courtesy of Jonathan Fitch/

Why Rest Equals Efficiency

This is my dog-child Kona. Having him next to me is like breathing air. Pure joy, peace, and contentment. Pet lovers understand this. Kona resting and increasing his efficiency. As you can tell from this picture, his favorite position to rest in is belly up. He has perfected it. In this position, he knows that all is well in the world and there is nothing for him to do. I learn so much from him.

When he isn’t resting, he’s awake and playing, running, walking, eating, peeing, pooping, sniffing out in the yard, and wagging his tail when I wave to him from across the room. During his awake hours he is alert, productive, and joyful. When he needs to, he rests.

This is exactly how I like to feel when I am awake. Alert, productive, and having fun.

We are all so busy these days trying to get more and more done in what seems like a shrinking amount of time. The more we push, the more tired we get. When our bodies and brains get tired, we make mistakes. When we make mistakes, we have to fix them. When we have to fix them, we get frustrated. Fixing mistakes takes even more time and energy. Our efficiency decreases. Then we get even more tired or pissed off even.

This is where rest comes in.

It can take many forms.

Sleep, deep breathing, watching a candle flame, exercising, sitting by a lake or river, stretching, walking in nature, laughing out loud, getting some water... It can be a long list.

Rest is super important because our brains and bodies weren’t designed to go all day long with the way we push ourselves. But we do it because we think we’ll get more done faster. But we can’t and don’t.

So how do we bypass this?

By resting.

Even if you only do it for a short while, your body and/or mind get a break from their heavy-duty output. When you take a minute to breathe deeply, a 10-minute walk outside, or a 30-minute nap, you are resting.

Resting from the chaos of life.

When you do this, you actually become more efficient, because by taking that break, your mind now has the space to come up with an answer to that problem you have been trying to solve at work. Or you discover an insightful way to lovingly deal with an issue in your relationship with your significant other.

Things become more clear, less stressful, and the next step seems obvious. All because you rested.

And what’s awesome is that your mind and body will tell you when you need a rest. You may be trying to come up with a solution to a specific problem. You can’t. You get frustrated. You keep trying to work through it. You can’t. The answer doesn’t come. Bingo. That’s your clue. It’s time to rest.

Or for me, I’m training for a marathon putting in way more miles than I ever have in my life and can’t figure out why I’m more physically tired during the day. Bingo. I needed a little more rest at night.

When your brain just feels like it’s spinning or your body just doesn’t want to walk up another flight of stairs, listen. Your mind and body are perfect indicators of what you need.

Try resting and notice your efficiency increase.

Take your queue from my dog Kona. He’s a living, breathing,  fur-bally example of pure efficiency.

Your Turn: What cool trick do you use to increase your efficiency? Leave a comment below, or email me,

Thank you for spending some of your time with me today. I really do appreciate it and hope you found it helpful.

As always, take from here what works for you, share with your friends if you think they might benefit, and the rest you can leave behind.

Bloom On! 907.374.6004

Seeds of Kindness Bloom and Bloom and Bloom...