Hippy Dippy Earth Mama

When I went looking for hippy earth mama pictures most of what I got was young women. Do you suppose that means I was suppose to outgrow this before I got to my 50’s?

Since my last vacation I have been embracing the hippy dippy earth mama side of myself (HDEM).  It has allowed me to continue to vacation even though I am back on the job. I am a lot more relaxed and a little less obsessed about what must be done at the end of each day.    I am embracing a more holistic view of life, with much more balance than I have had in years.

My closest friends know that  I have always been a HDEM.  Circumstances, mostly my job, have meant I needed to keep it in check in order to conform enough to be successful.   After all we all like to eat and shelter.   It is even nicer when we are successful enough in our jobs that we have enough money for a little nest egg and don’t have to worry that we are one or two paychecks from financial disaster or maybe be extravagant and  take a vacation.

There were ties you could wear and ties you could not wear.

For years I work as a manager in the systems and information technology field for Fortune 100 companies.   It was lots of old school in those days.   I was younger than most of my co-workers and female in a male dominated field.    I remember working across the street from an IBM office and it was there I learned about the uniform that was expected after coming from a blue-collar family in rural Illinois.   White oxford shirt, dark tie, coat and no facial hair was the standard dress expected for successful men.  No Exceptions!  There were few women role models, but those few women did the best version of the IBM look they could muster in a skirt.    Sounds sort of strange in today’s world of so much more casual, but indeed it was the way it was.   At one company I was the first and only woman manager of a department of mostly men, many 20 years older than me.   Talk about needing to look the part and walk the talk, I was that person.  My co-workers had no idea about my secret life as HDEM, though I had a unstructured, orange sherbert blazer that I loved and wore once in awhile just to throw them a curve ball occasionally.   I was following all the rules of John Malloy’s Dress for Success by day and buying my off hours clothes a Minneapolis Ragstock. I was an IBM’er by day and a Bohemian Art Fart by night.      Few knew the real me.

I  have been back to work now almost a month since vacation.  I am once again wearing my  hat as the queen of all that is technical at work.  It is comfortable place to be at work.  I am working with codes, numbers bits and bytes, dollars and cents,  and weighing it all out pros/cons, budget and mission and putting forth ideas and methods. Once conditioned after so many years or wearing the right persona I  find it near impossible to let loose  during the work hours and maybe I am not supposed to.   My job is different now I work from home.   I no longer manage a staff.   I no longer work a Fortune 100, not even a 500 company.   Yet I still seek to be a good worker be and seeking to ensure that employer gets that 110% contribution from me.  Before vacation it meant working long hours because I was never sure when I reached that 110%.   Now the HDEM is hard at work in me.  My day planner is a wild collection creativity full of quotes, pictures, doodles, ideas and thoughts, sorta of a reminder of who I AM steadily throughout the day.  Reminding me of when it is time to let go of my work life.    It is full of things there were no provisions made for when a Day-Timer was designed.   I am letting my creative muse run wild at 4pm instead of hoping for a little time, maybe sort of, when I find some extra time when the end of the day comes at 6 or 7.    I love cook and making yogurt and granola from scratch again.   I am taking more solitary walks.     Our TV reception disappeared and we have not fixed it, no loss there. I am doing yoga and walking instead of just walking.   I am volunteering again.  I am seeking out those things I want to try to see if I might enjoy something I don’t know about yet.  Yep the hippy dippy earth mama is a live and well and not so sure she wants to go back to part-time.




Reflecting on Changes

Lately I have been noticing lots of changes in myself.   I spent the morning reflecting on that.  Looking out the window thinking and letting my mind wander.


I came to realize that I am being more true myself lately.   Withdrawing from that which prevents that, and moving toward that which allows me to surface.

My lifetime friend and her husband recently visited.   It was wonderful to see her and connect with her in person.  It is a wonderful kind of friendship that I only have a few of.   She is one of the very few people I can freely be myself with.  We spent time talking not so much catching up but talking about ourselves and our futures; what we are doing that brings us joy and what we should be doing more of.

I have come to realize that this visit broke the dam of being what I thought I needed to be and allowed me to move toward what I want to be.   I am sort of a crazy, creative, risk taking, free-spirit, earth mama  who remembers the days of being very short of money.    It makes for an oxymoron sort of way of looking a life.   As much as I yearn for and feel best when I am functioning on the wild child right-side of my brain,  I am  one who understands that you need a job for money, and money for shelter and food.   So there is a piece of left brain that does indeed work and overrides the right side, because I like to eat and don’t want to be homeless.   Sometimes that left side goes crazy with craving to provide that stability that I get bogged down.  They can both co-exist, work and play well together in my life.   I just need to help find that balance.

You spend roughly 1/3 of your day in bed, 1/3 working (likely more than that), and the rest is your time.

I can’t change the amount of time I spend in bed too much, my body likes sleep.  Most of us need a certain amount of sleep for good health.

The amount of time we spend at work used to be eight hours a day and now for most folks the number is moving up as we let work creep more in to our personal lives.   It is hard for all of us as we need money to pay the bills.   For most of us that is jobs. Times are hard and if you have a job you feel lucky.   Often time we let jobs become us, define us  because we spend so much of our life at our jobs.  Been there, done that and not going back.  For some becoming one with the job works, Steve Jobs famous quote makes me think he found it.   For most of the rest of us it is just a facet of our life.   If we are lucky we like our job and co-workers.   In reality though there is a certain amount of protocol that we abide to when working, because it is what is expected while we are at work.   Most of our co-workers we do not socialize with in our off hours, not that they are not nice people, just not much in common besides your job.   So for your workday you spend most of your time being a good worker bee, which may not have much in common with you, besides your amazing skill set that your employer utilizes.

What I can change is how I utilize my free time.   Maybe free time isn’t the right word for it.  It is a precious commodity and it is mine.   To be used as I see fit.  I don’t need to justify what I do with that time.   None of us should.   How many times have we been enjoying an activity when we say I should…..you fill in the blank.   And if you don’t do the should what will happen??   Is there really a dire consequence of not doing the should and staying in the moment of the activity we are enjoying?   If not, I challenge you to do more of what you are enjoying and do less of the should.   So moving forward I am going to share more of the wild-child, earth mamma creative moments.   Maybe they will inspire you to do more of what you enjoy but have been missing.