Cycles of Life : Keeping You on Track

Keeping You on Track

In the book, Cycles of Life Keeping You on Track, Donna Messer writes about how life goes through cycles. She believes there is nothing new or innovative in life. Everything is merely a recycling of ideas, styles and trends.

She believes that by identifying these trends, a person can identify what has worked and what has not worked in his life and he can focus on things that have given him success and refrain from doing things that have not given him success.

She says “Our life cycle is like that of the caterpillar. It must go through each stage of its life before it can become a butterfly. What this means is that we need to take the time to experience each phase in our life, to learn from it, and recognize that it will be repeated over and over again as we grow older.”

Donna says, most of the lessons in this book are based on her own experiences and the people who have been a part of her life as she went through her cycles in life.

Read below an extract from her book below….

Growing up…….. this was the first cycle………..

As a young girl, my maternal grandmother had a tremendous influence on my life. She believed that no matter who you were, one of the most important things in life was to be comfortable with other people and to be accepted wherever you went.  I was a cute little girl, with dark shiny curls and a big smile.  I liked everyone, and I thought everyone liked me.  My grandmother was a very strong believer in learning how to “fit in”.  She always said – “Be like the people you’re with – they will feel comfortable because you have adapted to their ways”. She was a very wise woman.

My grandmother worked in a marvelous restaurant called The Arcadian Court – a magnificent place where important people went to have lunch and dinner. The Court had two levels and huge windows with burgundy velvet drapes from the floor to the ceiling. The tables were elegant, set with crystal glasses, shiny cutlery, and china that gleamed. The people who worked there were all very attentive and aware of the importance of being part of the team that made the Court so successful.

The year I turned six I was introduced to a world of amazing places and people.  My grandmother decided my education should begin with the practice of “fitting in” with the people.  She educated me in what today we might call “rapport”. I was a well mannered little girl; I loved my family and was respectful of my elders. I played ball, jump rope and took piano and ballet lessons. We had Sunday dinner with grandparents each week. Life was full and, for a little girl, exciting and complete.  When I was old enough, my maternal grandmother, “Mrs. Dean” to the world I was about to enter, felt it was time for me to take the next step.

I remember my first lesson; it was a Friday evening. We sat on my Grandmother’s bed, her cedar chest was open and the smell of lavender permeated the room. Friday nights were always a special time for my grandmother and I, it was a time for remembering, for dreaming and for taking time to be with each other.  Our ritual included reaching into her cedar chest to bring out an item of interest. Invariably what we brought out smelled nice and had a story, a memory my grandmother would weave into a narrative that was so interesting it would capture my complete attention for the entire evening. Sometimes it would be a hankie, another time a picture, a ribbon, a small notebook, a pressed rose, a pair of white kid gloves or a theater ticket.  There was a complete world of entertainment in that wonderful chest and it was only for my grandmother and I to enjoy.  Friday nights were always the best time of the week for me. Memories of yesterday often evoke the best ideas for today.

Networking Tip:  Think back to your youth, what did you learn that can stand you in good stead today? Make a list, who did you know?

My Strategy:  I blended Canada’s first Potpourri from the memory of the scent of lavender from my grandmother’s cedar chest.

You can find more details about my book at


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