What Are Your Core Principles? Your Main Values?

[Dutch Lock Down Day Three Hundred Eighty Three]

I’m asked this one a lot lately and, thankfully, I’ve thought about it quite a bit and even wrote it down.

My core principles are to embrace radical transparency and fail often; while I sometimes struggle with one, I’m rather successful with the other.

My core values are compassion, honesty, and open-mindedness.


But first the news:

I don’t usually answer that eloquently as much as something like, “I embrace transparency, collaboration, and appreciation.”

The transparency value is something that has been with me since I was quite young and was quite miserable to live with in America where you need to be polite and filter your thoughts and actions depending on context, environment, and people.

You can imagine how delightful it was for me to move to the Netherlands where it’s normal and expected to be honest and transparent always, despite context, environment, and people.

The collaboration thing developed as recently as my dance career – I discovered that I loved working with my dancers to create movement and timing rather than telling them to do MY movement and timing on THEIR bodies. Choreography was a collaboration.

And then I joined Red Hat where collaboration is a core principle. That experience made my love of collaboration evolve, develop, and grow stronger.

The appreciation thing, though, is fairly new.

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Get Thee To Bed, Leander

[Dutch Lock Down Day Three Hundred Seventy]

Photo by Cris Saur on Unsplash

One of the habits that I well and truly miss that has gone the way of all flesh is getting up around five in the morning.

It fell away at some point when one of the kids was sick or I was stressed or some other perfectly valid excuse, but just hasn’t returned.

There’s always a Really Good Reason ™ but I also truly LOVE the quiet morning time.

When I get to code.

And read.

And think.

And get started MY way.

But first the news:

I really started yearning for this habit again when I was laid off two weeks ago but, again, there’ve been EXCELLENT reasons to ignore the urge – Girl Twin was sick.

Then I was sick.

Fair enough.

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Is Resistance A Thing?

[Dutch Lock Down Day Three Hundred Forty Three]

Photo by Tarik Haiga on Unsplash

How do you conquer it? Or embrace it? Or…?

There are several books that talk about it, but one full on talks about it as a massive dragon and you are the knight and it’s time to do battle, and that’s Do The Work by Steven Pressfield and as much as this book kicks ass and I do love me some dragon analogies, I’m still having trouble applying the tenants as concrete actions.

But first the news:

While resistance seems to manifest for different people in different ways, for me it’s a joy foreboding / success sabotage thing.

If I’m doing well / am happy / am successful / haven’t had problems for a bit / relax, my brain says something along the lines of, “Ah, this won’t last” which is, yes, partially true – all good things come to an end. As do bad things. Everything is temporary. But there’s a part of me that won’t simply embrace the happiness.

Similarly, or maybe because of this, I seem to consciously or unconsciously sabotage those periods of time. My perspective or priorities will shift such that unimportant things or details will become the END OF THE WORLD and because I’ve been content, I won’t be doing self care as consistently or at all, and I’ll get sick.

This is what I’ve been working on, off and on, for the past few months.

Mostly passively, but now that I’m in a content / happy / expanding place, I’m actively facing it head on – how do I embrace happiness and success?

How do I expand into the universe instead of wait for the next disaster to strike?

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On The First Day of Vacation, My True Love Gave to Me

[Dutch Lock Down Day Two Hundred Seventy Four]

Photo by freestocks on Unsplash

A super decadent chocolate brownie with cream cheese icing.


I’m on vacation until 04 January, so this whole Twelve Days of Christmas theme won’t last, but it’s on my mind Right Now as Boy Twin fusses from his room, resisting this whole sleep thing because he slept for extra long this afternoon so Fuck This Shit.

Agreed, Little Buddy.

Fuck. This. Shit.

But first the news:

Especially if you’ve slept for three whole hours in the afternoon.

Fuck all this shit right to hell.

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Frankly, My Dear, I Don’t Give A Damn

[Dutch Lock Down Day Two Hundred Fifty Four]

Photo by Ravi Roshan on Unsplash

Yes, I forgot to write yesterday until it was time for bed, past time for bed, in fact, and then, instead of staying up even later, I took a deep breath in, let it out, accepted that I wouldn’t write today’s post today, and went to bed.

So today’s post is care of tomorrow and you’re reading this from the future.

Ain’t. Life. GRAND.

This week, in pursuit of the Farmer Project, I dove into radical compassion and, orthogonally related, discovering another word for self-improvement.

But first the news:

I don’t like the word self-improvement.

It implies that you’re less than now and once you completely self-improvement, you’ll be better than.

And growth reminds me too much of plants. I kill plants. Also, why is a bit of height or a step towards death, without any effort, considered a good thing. And what’s the opposite? When I’m not growing, I’m … shrinking?


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