Newsletters

Opportunity Disguised as Loss … Three Years Later

By Jean Storlie / June 3, 2015 / 3 Comments

Instead of checking my email before work, I called my mom to wish her happy birthday. When I walked into the office, I could tell something was odd. My boss walked past me without greeting or eye contact. Looking out at the sea of cubicles, I noticed that everyone had their heads down, and I…

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A “Super Senior” Decision Led to Her Dream Job

By Jean Storlie / May 2, 2015 / 4 Comments

Something about my daughter’s text, “When are you getting home?” alarmed me as I was getting off the plane on a beautiful summer evening in late August 2013. I suppressed my “mother instinct” to worry as I drove home and joined my husband on our patio. About 20 minutes later, Abby came out and asked…

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Sewing Zippers in a Factory Ignited My Career Passion

By Jean Storlie / April 1, 2015 / 1 Comment

Sewing machines buzzed around me, as I quickly loaded another zipper and started to sew. My co-worker at the next station was sewing like a whirling dervish; her hands flying forward and backward, up and down, as she installed zippers on sleeping bags at a rate of 90-100/hour. She screamed at the handlers, who were…

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Shrinking the Monster Named Fear

By Jean Storlie / March 3, 2015 / 6 Comments

“Mom, are you coming?” Jackson called from the next plateau. I was sitting on a rock ledge trying to overcome the vertigo triggered by my fear of heights. Next to me sat a woman who’d confessed that she did not have the fitness to proceed. Observing her contented defeat, I knew I didn’t want to…

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He Learned the Hard Way that Holiday Humor Has a Dark Side

By Jean Storlie / December 1, 2014 / 1 Comment

After one of my storytelling workshops, a participant handed me his business card and invited me to call him because he wanted me to share his story. Anonymity is important to him, so let’s call him Mike.  Sixteen years ago, Mike was a rising star as a design engineer. He was being groomed for advancement…

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What My Ford Galaxy Taught Me about Mentoring

By Jean Storlie / October 2, 2014 / 2 Comments

As a freshman in college, I had to live with my parents, which was not what I wanted to be doing. Feeling stifled and cut off from my peers, I came up with the idea that buying a car would give me (some of) the freedom I craved. When I broached the topic with my…

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Change is Not a Light Switch: The Grief in New Year’s Resolutions

By Jean Storlie / January 6, 2014 / 4 Comments

Bernie joined the Cardiac Rehab program where I interned in grad school. He was angry and resistant to the lifestyle changes we promoted. I remember him standing in the back of my nutrition class, making jokes and snide remarks under his breath – he was distracting and made me feel uncomfortable. He sent his wife…

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Family Meal Conundrum: Four Chairs for Five People

By Jean Storlie / September 5, 2013 / 1 Comment

Amy, the 17-year-old daughter of someone I know, spent this summer as a nanny for three amazing kids, age five to eleven. She learned to juggle a lot of comings and goings and stay on top of a hectic schedule of events. But in between tennis and golf camps, soccer practice, swim team, and play…

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Rocks, Pebbles, Sand: A Story-bite about the Important Things in Life

By Jean Storlie / August 7, 2013 / 23 Comments

A teacher walks into a classroom and sets a glass jar on the table. He silently places 2-inch rocks in the jar until no more can fit. He asks the class if the jar is full and they agree it is. He says, “Really,” and pulls out a pile of small pebbles, adding them to…

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Sunday Night Dinner: Rituals That Build a Family Narrative

By Jean Storlie / June 12, 2013 / 3 Comments

“I can’t wait until I go to college so I don’t have to sit through Sunday Night Dinner,” our 18-year-old daughter whined — creating tension and drama — as we gathered for our ritual meal around the dining room table, set with linens and lit with candles. Six months later on her first weekend home…

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