What’s Your Goal?

Psychologists Heidi Grant Halvorson and colleagues found that when people create goals, there are two different classifications: (1) Be Good and (2) Get Better. I found it helpful in my own life to learn about this research, and I’d love to hear how it impacts you.

CalmUp® photo of geese heads under water

Heads Under Water

Those who fall into the Be Good classification focus on proving themselves, caring primarily about how they are perceived by others. For instance, they would go for the “A” because of their belief that getting the high grade would reflect on them as a person.

People who fall into the Get Better group focus more on improving themselves, and go for the “A” as a way to master the material. For those who fall into the Be Good category, their attention is on the outcome of the goal, whereas for those who fall into the Get Better category, their attention is on the journey itself.

CalmUp® photo of geese heads above water

Heads Above Water

The meaningful piece of this research is that people can change their pattern. For instance, whenever you find yourself attempting to Be Good, you might improve the quality of your life by shifting your intention to Getting Better. When you open to the usefulness for both goals, you’ll discover that success, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

Is Social Networking a Spiritual Practice?

I found myself on Facebook before falling asleep then on Twitter first thing in the morning, and I was reminded of the CalmUp® vision. How was I doing in terms of inner-peace and having more energy? Was a reshuffling of priorities in order?

In addition to CalmUp®, I began a business venture with my husband. I wondered how I could possibly keep both going. Lately, even before I open my eyes each morning, there are an infinite number of options from which to choose from the life buffet: Do I pray, snuggle, let the dogs out, take a CalmUp® Journey, exercise, shower, go back to sleep, etc.?

Although social networking was never designed to be a spiritual practice, don’t assume that it isn’t. I would argue that connecting with commentary from magnificent spiritual leaders, not to mention breathtaking images and uplifting videos, has the capacity for us to open our hearts and do even more—share. Sharing is the definition used for spirituality in CalmUp®.

As a culture, our plates are overflowing. As an individual, I must live authentically. Although my passion remains the same, I’ve chosen to put CalmUp® on hold. When the time is right, perhaps someday you’ll find another Wellspring Guideposts in your inbox.

75 Blessings for Your 75th Birthday

mom at 75In the same way that I shared the letter to my son last month, my mother gave permission to share her birthday letter too. I doubt that you’ll enjoy it as much as she did—my hope is that it will motivate you to express some reasons of your own.

Dear Mom,

  1. All you do comes from a place of love
  2. You continually strive to be the best possible version of yourself
  3. You do a good job setting limits
  4. You’re always there for me and others too
  5. You’re a serious survivor
  6. You’ve taught me about God for as long as I can remember
  7. You keep good books on your bookshelves
  8. You stressed the importance of education
  9. You’ve been a good role model for taking care of yourself
  10. You always showed respect to your parents
  11. You know how to choose a great partner
  12. You’re beautiful (and yes, magnificent too)
  13. You made it to 75!
  14. You never stop learning
  15. You exercise and take care of yourself
  16. You appreciate beauty
  17. You love music
  18. You love butterflies
  19. You strive for the best

Put Your Responsibilities on Hold

How can I put my responsibilities on hold?

One of my favorite childhood memories is when I asked my mom if I could stay home from school when I wasn’t sick—and she said, “Yes”!

These days, there’s something very enticing about letting go of the to-do list for a day. For me, I like not answering the phone, letting go of emails, and basically taking a technology day off. Your idea of putting responsibilities on hold may include watching football all day, spending a day playing golf, or going to the spa.

Let’s face it, there’s a reason the Sabbath was invented. Regardless of how you choose to replenish yourself, do take the time. The chores will still be there when you’re ready. Before you know it, you’ll be asking:

How can I face my responsibilities today?

state marching band championshipsI took this photo after spending all day and all night at the Colorado state high school marching band festival. Talk about putting responsibilities on hold!


  1. List 5 things you can do to replenish yourself.
  2. If it has been longer than 7 days since you’ve put your responsibilities on hold, schedule a day to do so and let us know how it goes!

18 Ways to Move from Cynicism to Enthusiasm

CalmUp® photo of Nicky looking cynical

  1. Understand that not everyone perceives the world the way that you do and life would be boring if people all had similar thoughts.
  2. When you’re being cynical, are you also being judgmental?
  3. When you find yourself feeling cynical, make sure that you’re not admonishing yourself at the same time.
  4. When you’re feeling cynical, are you being controlling and wanting others to behave differently?
  5. Open to the humor that can often be found in a cynical statement.
  6. Cynicism isn’t about “bad,” and enthusiasm isn’t about “good.”
  7. Admit that sometimes it feels good to be cynical, almost like an ego boost, as if others are wrong, while you are right.
  8. When it comes to moving towards enthusiasm, take small steps. For example, get in touch with the good feelings with which you are already familiar, such as stepping into a warm bath.
  9. Meditate and focus on your breathing. Observe how thoughts of cynicism and enthusiasm come and go.
  10. Notice your attitude when you first open your eyes each morning. Where are you in the range from cynicism to enthusiasm? Are you able to move from ugh to ahh?

Build Your Dream

I live in a comfortable neighborhood surrounded by tree houses. My husband and son built the first tree house on the block, a German-style cottage, high above our front yard. Two neighbors followed suit—one included real glass windows, the second, a loft.

Recently, down the block, a family moved into a house that sat empty for more than 18 months. We were glad to notice the trimming of shrubs and clearing of overgrown weeds. Then, the hammering throughout the July 4th holiday signaled our neighbors’ plan to join the tree house alliance.

While walking my dogs, I complimented our new neighbor on what I assumed was the completed three-tiered project. “Oh no,” he exclaimed. “The tiers are just the landings to the tree house that has yet to be built!”

CalmUp® photo of tree house

What dream are you building?

•    How would you describe your dream succinctly a la elevator pitch?
•    What are the necessary steps to develop your dream to fruition?
•    What would it mean to you to have your dream fulfilled or potentially unfulfilled?

If you happen to read my most recent blog, What Would You Be Willing to Sacrifice? you’ll find that I almost gave up one important dream for another.

On or Off?

CalmUp® photo of yoga mat

THIS MORNING I was on my yoga mat. I enjoy doing yoga from the comfort of my living room. The challenge of a yoga video, however, is that there are no fellow yogis to motivate me to stay on the mat.

I was about halfway through my routine when I started thinking about some of the other things I could be doing. I silently told myself, Stay on the mat. I knew I could do it. The next pose was one of my favorites.

It’s so easy to be seduced away from the moment—so many important things to be done. I’m proud to share that I stuck it out. I stayed on the mat, and I feel great.

LAST WEEK I was on my yoga mat. I’m not a serious yogi—I maintain a flexible schedule. Believe me, I accept food offers over down dog.

I was about 15 minutes into the routine when I started thinking about sitting with my son who was watching The Big Bang Theory in the other room. I silently told myself, Stay on the mat. Nah, I’d rather chill out with my boy.

Just Chillin’: I Took a CalmUp® Journey Today

CalmUp® photo of lake and cat tail

  • How can I move softly during this very long day?
  • How can I regain my energy and return to effortless effort?
  • How can I notice when it starts to feel like effort?




These were a few of my recent personal “How can I…” questions. Have you been feeling exhausted recently? You’re not alone. I hear so many people commenting about how tired they feel.

It’s easy to join the crowd and respond in agreement with some comment like, “Me too, I’ve been going non-stop.” We’ve learned that draining our energy is a precursor to illness. Who wants to go down that road?

I recently shared in the June issue of Wellspring Guideposts that over functioning has been my modus operandi. What I experienced this past week, however, was above the norm! Fortunately, I took a CalmUp® Journey and awoke from the stupor. I quickly shifted directions and let go of a time-consuming project. It felt so good to regain my energy and focus.

Effortless Effort: The CalmUp® Way

How can I open to effortless effort?

birds in flight

I tweeted my How can I…  question of the day. I first learned about the concept of effortless effort at a meditation retreat during 2007. Now I was ready to integrate this idea like a mantra!

Following my tweet, I Googled effortless effort. I discovered a great article called The Effortless Effort by Maria Rodale on her website, Maria’s Farm Country Kitchen. There I learned that the term is Taoist and refers to aligning ourselves with our true nature. To ensure future contact, I ‘liked’ Maria on Facebook.

What a fun world we live in today. We can research a topic one minute and become friends with an author the next. Within moments, I connected with a like-minded individual… all through effortless effort.

With the help of my CalmUp® Journey, I set an intention for my day. Somehow I made it to work 10 minutes early and began writing this blog before starting my day job. Later, I accomplished the goals I set for the day… again, through effortless effort.

Tomorrow morning’s question:

How can I create a habit of effortless effort?

Spring is Here: Renew Recharge Reclaim

This is the photo for the CalmUp® blog April 17, 2013 titled "Spring is Here: Renew Recharge Reclaim"

Spring in Colorado means snow. Renew?

In some States, there has been some perilous flooding. Recharge?

Around the globe, there’s considerable warfare. Reclaim?

Have you ever considered commanding nature or limiting international hostility? Such wishful thinking may leave you feeling ineffective.

Rather than trying to control what’s outside of you, why not build your personal power? Taking a CalmUp® Journey is one path (and a simple one at that!) to assist in monitoring your beliefs, thoughts, behaviors, and choices. As you may already know, every CalmUp® Journey begins with a “How can I…” question.

Below are the current sample “How can I…?” questions on the Your Sample Questions page of the www.DrLorieGose.com website. The questions are classified under eight life categories.


  • How can I be aware of when I’m controlling others?
  • How can I improve my confidence?


  • How can I keep my marriage strong while I go through this difficult part of my life?
  • How can I honor this person in this moment?


  • How can I facilitate family communication so that everyone’s voice is heard?

Daily Life Experiences