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The "Adventure Lab" is an idea incubator and collaborative resource hub for women over 40 who are hungry to create epic adventures, even on a shoestring budget. With a focus on asset-building and mentoring, we deal with the whole person in a way that is inclusive, regardless of financial means, and that creates opportunities for women at risk both in our local communities, and in developing nations.

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You are browsing the archive for mindful living Archives - ᘡ Adventure Lab ᘠ ... rock paper estrogen.

Isabel Allende, on aging, living with passion, and the wisdom of having fun while doing good.

March 1, 2015 in , by Sue Braiden

Isabel Allende, TED Talk, Vancouver 2014

I fell down a rabbit hole this morning, and it left me anxious to share this TED Talk given by 71-year-old Chilean author, Isabel Allende. There was astonishing synchronicity for me, from the quote she shared by another favourite author, Mary Oliver:

“Tell me, what is it that you plan to do with your one precious and wild life?”

to her invitations to embrace the wisdom of adopting an ageless attitude; of living in the moment; a hearkening to care deeply for others, fueled by her mentor, Olga Murray (another Adventure Diva who found her calling at age 60, rescuing more than 12,000 young girls from domestic bondage, changing both the culture and the laws, and ensuring an education for more than 4,000 children); and even a later revelation, as I went on a hunt to learn more about her, in a serendipitous trip to India (something I have been planning for myself).

As I dug deeper it simply left me overwhelmed. There is so much about this woman that I wanted to come back and share, but I didn’t know where to start. I worried about doing her justice, and finding a simple way to bring back such a complex berth of wisdom and “Aha! moments” that I thought I should simply put this aside.

But I’m learning that it’s best to be in the moment, while it’s fresh and full of life something that Isabel reiterates in her talk), so, I simply asked myself the question: “What do you want to say?”. Click through to learn more.

How a “mindful friendships” self-audit can unearth some unexpectedly awesome adventure buddies.

August 17, 2014 in by Sue Braiden

The Trouble Twins

“God is not a 911 operator.” These were the first words I read when I opened Facebook this morning. This little reminder from a friend got me thinking about it in a much bigger context, and how we sometimes treat friends and family in this way too. Most of us have been on the receiving end of this kind of relationship, where we feel we’re just there when someone needs something from us, and of course, it makes us feel like crap. Many of us have also been the perpetrators at some point, and until something shakes us out of the comfort zone of our daily sleepwalk, we might not even realize we’re doing it.

Reflecting on that Facebook post made me feel a little guilty. I realized that, regardless of whatever sense of spirituality each of us may embrace, the notion that we sometimes let our lives “just happen” to us is often at the cost of forsaking all kinds of relationships, and a really meaningful life.

The Gutcheck …

Whenever I catch myself feeling guilt or shame, I try to take a moment to understand what “the takeaway” is. That is, I look for what is making me feel badly, and ask myself if there is something I can do about it, some good that can come of it. In this case it has me really thinking hard on the idea of cultivating “mindful friendships”.

Back to Facebook for a moment: it’s a great example of how we sometimes dilute the value of “mindful friendships”. We might have hundreds of people on our list, but how many are people that we genuinely feel a yearning to break bread with at that digital kitchen table each day? Are we collecting social trophies? Reconnecting out of a sense of novelty or nostalgia? Are the relationships healthy, or toxic?

What would happen if we were to go down that list and distill it into another: the kindred souls with whom we really share a mutual social, emotional and intellectual feast?

There’s an unexpected perk to doing a “mindful friendships” self-audit: some potentially awesome adventure buddies!

A healthy alliance is mutually beneficial. We can inspire each other, support each other, and have all kinds of adventures together, and in truth, sharing adventures is a pretty great way to rekindle a friendship again, no? Whether it’s something small, like picking apples and drinking cider in an old orchard barn, or cutting down a Christmas tree together; or something more epic, like planning a trip to Tuscany to feed your diva souls, the very art of conspiring ways to suck the marrow out of life is both a fun way to bond, and live well.

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