March 2016

What's Next? Life Coaching with Penny Rackley

Coming up at Inspire Yoga 
Highland Village
March LifeInspired: 
Saying No

Do you find yourself wrapped up in commitments that don't serve 
your values? How can we be true to ourselves, even if it disappoints 
the ones we love? 

Join me on Thursday, March 17th at 12:15 and 5:30pm at Inspire Yoga 
in Highland Village, TX for this
free group coaching session. 
We'll learn to release extraneous expectations and get back 
to what really matters.

And don't worry, no sharing required. 
It's free and everyone's invited. 
Join us!

Inspire Yoga Studio - Highland Village
1401 Shoal Creek | Suite 268
Highland Village, Texas 75077

-- Latest Inspiring Lives Podcasts -- 

Click, listen and learn how to 
live a more gratifying, beautiful, courageous and soulful life

Episode 8: Fighting the Flu and Zika
with Nurse Practitioner Kim Bookout

Who has time for illness? In this episode, Kim shares her strategies for staying healthy through the end of flu season, updates us on the Zika virus, and tells us what kind of supplements we need most.


Episode 7: Feeling Better
We Can Build Emotional Resilience

How quickly can you shake off your 
dark moods and get back to life? In this podcast, we'll work through specific exercises designed to build 
strength and clarity.

It is TIME to get out in the sunshine. My nurse practitioner friend -- the one interviewed in this podcast -- says we're practically ALL deficient in sunlight-generated vitamin D. We need it to have healthy immune systems. 

In the next few days, take a little walk outside. Take a friend with you, ask them about their day, their week, their life, and take time off from thinking about your own. Everybody wins.

I hope you enjoy this beautiful Spring.

- Penny
Worth It
I've taught two- and three-year olds in Sunday school since my mid-twenties. You can imagine how many times I've said the word NO to perfect, beautiful, charming but incredibly tenacious little ones -- through impassioned demands to Go Right NOW and get their Mommy (of course), fist-pounding fits over the toy train (everyone wants the caboose), high-whined begging to use REAL paint and glue (not just crayons and tape - those are for babies), the pleading side glances for just one more cup of goldfish crackers (right before lunch). 

I try to let my no mean No. In the end, it saves us all a lot of heartache.

You'd think these experiences would've made it easy to say no to my own children, but - UGH - it's so hard to deny the people we love. Hard to disappoint them, even when we know it's the right thing to do. 

Especially with the baby. Garret is my baby. If you're a regular reader of this newsletter, you've seen his picture dozens of times. (He's the one with straight brown hair. Mason is the curly top.) The problem with G was that he's easy. He seldom cried, really never threw tantrums, just pleasant from the very start, then so sweet as a toddler and happy as a child. So on the rare occasion when he did get in trouble, it was HARD to tell him no. So hard.

Once when my mother-in-law Elsie was visiting, she and I went to pick him up from nursery school. She was beside herself to see him -- an unearthly cute and affectionate three-year-old. While we waited for the kids to be released, Garret's teacher called me over for a private conversation. That's never good.

Seems my sweet dumpling boy had been exhibiting signs of "a hitting problem."  And, no, today wasn't the first time he'd flipped out over his block tower being demolished. I listened to the sordid details, felt one hundred years old, then collected my dimpled progeny and strapped him into his car seat to start for home.

"How was your school day, baby?" Elsie was a career-long elementary teacher who appreciates the value of a well-behaved child. She'd also rather take a bullet than see any of her grandchildren suffer. 

Garret's little legs dangled as he shifted in his seat. "Fine." Uncharacteristically succinct. 

I got straight to the point. "Did that Presley boy knock your tower over today?"

His pink lips twisted a yes.

"What did you do?"

(Three beats of consideration. Weighing the options.)

"I hit him." 

In that moment could hear Elsie thinking, "Good for YOU, Handsome Grandson! I'm sure it was a public service, and that Presley boy is an insufferable brat in need of a well-placed smack!" Thankfully, she kept these thoughts to herself.

The car was very quiet for a long time until G ventured a "Whatareyougoingtodo?"

"I think you know the consequences for hitting." I was trying not to giggle and change the subject, trying to be serious because in his child mind this was very serious, trying to think of a way out of being true to my word -- that he'd be punished for letting his temper get the best of him.

(More silence.)

"Are you going to spank me?"

Our gaze met in the rear view mirror. He should be a salesman, with those compelling, meltingly-beautiful brown eyes, that pretty chin. I should have settled for only having pets. Cats don't need much discipline... 

We pulled into the garage, and I went to help G out of his seat.

"Mom, Mom, let's not do this. Let's not do this. I'll be good."

(Heavy sigh.) "No, Honey. Come with me." 

Elsie still tells the story, "...then you pulled that precious thing into the back bedroom, and I heard two little pops, a loud but half-hearted wail, and it was all over. He came out, brushed a tear aside, and asked me to read him the new book I'd brought."

Whether you agree with corporal punishment or not, please know that I didn't enjoy administering it, it wasn't delivered in anger, and only his pride was injured. What G did learn from that experience is that he was expected to follow the rules, and he couldn't charm his way out of what I'd promised would happen if he disobeyed. 

It was a defining moment in our relationship. He knew, "When Mom says No, she means No." In some ways, it took the pressure off of both of us.

If you struggle with saying NO when you really need to -- with your kids, your boss, your spouse, relatives -- or if your time, patience and energy always seem to be taken up by other peoples' agendas, excuses and emergencies, then I hope you'll come to my next LifeInspired session (see sidebar). I can help you help yourself. 

Coaching with Penny


If you want to make a life change, are recovering from a loss or just need help defining your goals and reaching them, then you might be a good candidate for coaching.


My first session is always free, so we can get to know one another. Call 214-793-1503 or email me at for an appointment.