What Defines You?

Have you ever become “defined” by a hardship?

We become the hardship when we are constantly talking or worrying about our woes or sitting in self-pity that consumes us and becomes our identity. I certainly have defined myself by a hardship before!

Klyn Elsbury, born with cystic fibrosis, was told to make end-of-life arrangements at 25 years old.

Yet despite her significant daily challenges just to breathe, Klyn is now 30 years old.  She is  thriving and loving her life.

Kyln’s illness isn’t cured. She regularly spends between 3 and 6 months a year in the hospital. She isn’t defined by her illness. She doesn’t complain or identify as a victim. She runs a company and is an inspirational speaker.

Klyn isn’t defined by her hardship.

Likewise, my neighbor who recently died wasn’t defined by his devastating diagnosis and prognosis. He lived fully and remained a positive force until the day he died. At his funeral, his wife said she was not going to be defined by his death.


Hardships, deaths, illnesses or tragedies affect, or will affect, us all. It is the not-so-great part of being human.

And grieving about a hardship is different than being defined by one.

Grieving is an important process of acceptance and getting through tough times.

But allowing the hardship to become our identity is a choice.

There is always a choice as to how we respond to anything in our lives.

Do you know of someone who is not being defined by a hardship? I’d love to hear about them!

And if you don’t tell me, please tell them how they inspire YOU!


Kathy McCabe
Life Coach

P.S.–If you want to choose to no longer be defined by a challenge in your life but you are not sure how to do it, schedule a free mini-session with me to get some help!  As L. said, “The mini session was so helpful and completely shifted my mindset!” Email me if you are interested in scheduling one!

P.S.S.–Local Moms! Please join me for a free & fun Mom’s Night Out, on 11/28/18 at Valley Lodge Tavern in Wilmette. Watch your email for more details!

How Do You Show Up?

A wonderful, kind, “life-of-the-party” and nearly 50-year-old man died in our community this past week. He had young children, a beautiful wife, and he was loved by many people.

A few years ago, one of my brothers also died at age 51.

It is so heart-wrenching when people you love die.

How do losses of our loved ones make “sense?”

They don’t.

When we are reminded about life’s fragility, we can do our best to help grieving families.

And we can recognize the truth that none of us truly knows how long we – or our loved ones – will be on this earth.

We can appreciate ourselves and our loved ones now.

We can ask ourselves: How do we show up each day?

Are we filled with pettiness, complaints, anger or resentment?

Today, is there someone or something you can:

  • stop complaining about – and perhaps take action to improve?
  • let go of?
  • forgive?
  • show kindness to?

I need to be reminded to do all of these things. I would love to hear if this helps you!


Kathy McCabe
Life Coach



What’s Better Than A Cup Of Coffee?


Do you ever notice how you FEEL when you get something you really, really want?

Most of us really want the “feeling” of having that “thing” we want.

Quite often, we are seeking feelings of peace, excitement, love, security or joy by obtaining the “thing” we want.

For example, we may want the feeling of relaxation by going on vacation. Or we may want the feelings of contentment and energy by losing unwanted weight.

But here’s what is CRAZY…

When we create the feeling NOW of having the “thing” we want, we are much more likely to get it!

AND we get the added bonus of feeling great NOW.

So HOW do you create that feeling you want now?

I created this short meditation, based on the work of Dr. Martha Beck, for some of my clients to help them find that feeling NOW!

As one client said, this meditation if “Better than a cup of coffee!”  

Try this “Create Your Future Now” meditation (4:07).

Enjoy – and please let me know how you FEEL after doing it!


P.S.– Want to learn more easy tools to help you Create What You REALLY Want? Email me to join my small-group coaching program starting Saturday 11/3!

Email me here to learn about my 2019 groups!

Kathy McCabe
Life Coach