Party of 1

Have you ever traveled by yourself? Sat in a restaurant and had a meal by yourself? Or gotten in the car and just driven… with no particular destination?

I have written before about the importance of silence and solitude. Taking myself away for 24 hours – alone with no phone, no computer, no tv, no nothing – THAT was the start of my YES I CAN journey. It allowed me to focus on me with no outside “noise” or distractions.

While driving up to Northern California on Easter weekend, I had that same feeling and desire. I needed to escape, disappear, and find myself yet again. I was now a single woman with new dreams, goals and visions. I had a new independence I was ready to celebrate.   I contemplated throwing everything in the car and just driving to destinations unknown. No plan, no map – just go. But realizing that was not the smartest decision a single woman could make, the next best thing was to escape to the mountains. Park City Utah to be exact, a place I’d been before and found great solitude and peace. But this time, I wanted adventure as well.

The morning of the fight, I woke up nervous. What was I doing? I’d traveled alone many times for business – but this was FUN. How could I have fun on my own? I’d been married almost 30 years, I’d had 3 children, I’d traveled all over the world – but I was nervous until a special friend texted me… “lean into it” – and I’ve carried that with me.

From taking a drive into the mountains, to the aerial tram to the top of Snowbird, to taking myself out to a very fancy dinner and ordering a champagne cocktail…. I was leaning into being a party of 1. It can be and was very uncomfortable but after all, my mantra is YES I CAN.

We all experience challenges – in our business, our relationships, our lives. Sometimes we need a “time out” to reboot, renew, and review. And then sometimes we just need to lean into it. While I use my YES I CAN mantra all the time, I have also developed a “tagline” for my life….. Color outside the lines, think outside the box and live outside the limits of my fears. Here is how I use them…

  • Color outside the lines
    Are you following the rules, keeping within the lines of what is “expected” or “correct” but not in alignment with who YOU are? I challenge you to take that crayon and scribble outside the lines. The freedom is empowering.
  • Think outside the box
    Are your thinking patterns the same day in and day out? Are you stuck in the muck because thinking outside the box is uncertain and may involve risk? I challenge you to stop right now, this moment – and think about how you can do it differently, whatever it is. Doing what you’ve always done and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. You can only grow outside the box.
  • Live outside the limits of your fears
    I live outside the limits of my fears every single day. Why do you think I use the mantra YES I CAN. Because as I’m getting on that plane by myself, as I’m driving up the mountain not knowing what to expect, as I walk in to the restaurant and confirm, “Yes, it’s just a table for 1”, I am stepping through and outside the boundaries my fears have held me in. It’s only when I do live outside the limits, pushing past my fears, that I have experienced my greatest joys.

My escape to Park City is almost over. I’m hoping the weather cooperates so that I can experience my final adventure on this trip. Am I nervous? You bet! Am I afraid I won’t be able to physically do it? Yes! But I want to get in the game of fully living. I don’t want to feel like a failure if I don’t succeed but rather feel success because I was willing to try.  Much of it is living beyond our comfort zones, but I’m leaning in and saying YES I CAN. Will you join me?

Comments

  1. Ann Gambrell says:

    Cathy, I am blown away as I read this. You are one brave woman. I honor you as you move forward in your journey.
    I am proud to know you and look forward to your future challenges and successes….even if you “trip” along the way.
    You will get up and move forward. How exciting it must be for you.
    Thank you for sharing this with me and others.
    Yes…you CAN do this,
    Ann Gambrell

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