Lathrop/Kendal North Residents' Website

Wellness Matters

Partnering for Purpose   

I’m paving a road with intention. I don’t spend a lot of time considering where it’s going. We all know where the road will ultimately go.  What I most care about is momentum.  I like a road with as few ruts as possible of course, but mostly I am pointing this road toward what interests, what nourishes, toward possibilities that might answer some of my questions and heal some of the wounded spots. It’s my road after all.

Talking to folks I see how easy it easy to let the road stall, to keep traveling the same stretch over and over, to get stuck in the cul-de-sacs. The justifications about why are many, some real and some convenient or just well-practiced.  Road building is exhausting, especially when you’ve got lots of miles behind you already. Need we always be building new stretches? What about the essential demand that the old roads be maintained, with better drainage, improved vistas and renewed landscaping?

Whether we are paving the road to somewhere yet unvisited or just filling in potholes, the progress, I suggest, goes better when we aren’t the only person paying attention. If I hold the belief that this is my life road alone, I can just choose to go around the rutted parts or keep circling the donut shop. But when we do accept the challenge of re-paving or extending, many of us just find intention is not enough. We need inspiration and we need support to remind us where we said we wanted that road to go.

Now you may be blessed with a life partner who can provide the support you need without letting their own road-building block or delay your progress.  Perhaps that person is gone or never, as is the dear friend that provided reflection, or encouragement. Perhaps that person never really appeared. We men don’t seem so comfortable collaborating, but there are plenty of lonely travelers here of either gender.  One way I’ve found that might serve as a model is a program called Cojourn, originally the Co-Accountancy Project, created by a UMASS doctoral student and her partner.  I have found a Cojourn partner, and we are committed to a weekly half hour call, structured around sharing of intentions and the small weekly goals we set for ourselves. We have asked our partner to listen, to question but not to judge or suggest without being asked. What we’ve done is ask another person over the course of a year to bear witness on our behalf as to how we are attempting to direct our growth.

Here at Lathrop I am very encouraged when I hear about the deep benefit that a group of painters receive from their weekly time together sharing and encouraging their work.  There is an active group of writers who serve to support and stimulate each other’s efforts.  Ultimately as adults we are accountable for our own choices, but it’s important to know we are not alone in our struggle to be so. I hope all are continuing to place their paving stones of intention, whether it’s to strengthen a fitness habit, to address a better diet, to spend more time on a project or connecting with others.  Enlisting a partner on purpose might be a way to get momentum started and keep the road rolling out ahead of you.

[Mollie, the founder of Cojourn still lives in the area and if folks are interested to learn more would love to come out to speak with us.  They can be found on the web at]


Click on the links below to read all of Rob’s articles

Partnering for Purpose February 2018

Brain and Balance Building- Grace Useful but Not Required February 2018

Walking the Dog – Worth Every Step February 2018

Even If We Never Get to Carnegie Hall January 2018

(Staying) Standing Up to Winter January 2018

And The Season is Finally Here November 2017

A Few Shots Might Help (or Probably Couldn’t Hurt) October 2017

Wonder, Surprise and Delight October 2017

People are Talking, and That’s a Good thing – August 2017

Getting Right With Pain – August 2017

Harvard Health Letter reprint – Mindfulness July 2017

High Season July 2017

Gratitude is a Positive Choice June 2017

Spiritual Fitness April 2017

Cross Train the Brain April 2017

The Second Pillar of Prevention- Stress Management March 2017

Food as Medicine: The First Principle of Prevention March 2017

The Stories We Write and The Stories We Live February 2017

Neighbors Caring In Northampton January 2017

How Much Support Is Enough? January 2017

Aging In Place January 2017

Seasonal Tidbits December 2016

Want To Make A Healthy Change? Start With the Right Goal December 2016

Living in the Rhythm of the Year December 2016

Fight Heartburn and GERD: Diet and Lifestyle Can Make a Difference (Part one of two) December 2016

Fight Heartburn and GERD: Diet and Lifestyle Can Make a Difference (Part two of two) December 2016

The Four Keys To Well-Being November 2016

Fitness Committee Working to Get You Moving October 2016

CPR-Responding in a Cardiac Emergency October 2016

Independent Musing October 2016

10 Easy Steps to Prevent Colds and Flu September 2016

Be Prepared For Stroke Response September 2016

Musings at the Edge of Things August 2016

Anybody Home? August 2016

Vitalize 360-A Powerful Tool in the Wellness Toolkit July 2016

Directing your Care- Hospice at the Roads End July 2016

Feeling Better is as Easy as ABC June 2016

Directing Your Care – Certified Home Care is the VNA June 2016

Directing Your Care – Time Spent in Rehab June 2016

Retired Men at Work May 2016

Tick Prevention May 2016

Directing Your Care: Who is the Hospitalist? May 2016

Directing Your Care: Injured When Away From Home April 2016

New Partner on the Path: Lathrop’s Fitness Committee April 2016

Responding to an Emergency: Lathrop’s Safety Net March 2016

What’s Your Plan? March 2016

Foods that Fight Inflammation February 2016

Straight Talk On Depression February 2016

Reaching For Fitness January 2016

Pendant and Pull Cords – January 2016

Caregiver Support Group – January 2016

Mindfulness Basics -December 2015

Holding Light in Darkening Days – December 2015

Correct Walker Use – December 2015

Assistance for You Should the Time Come – November 2015

The Gift of Never-ending Work – October 2015

On Being Mortal – October 2015

Grief and Praise – Changing Aging October 2015

Cultivating Vitality, Yoga – September 2015

MIND Diet – September 2015

Staying Healthy in the Months Ahead – September 2015

Walking Promo – September 2015

Falls, the Game Changer – August 2015

Stay Driving -August 2015

More on Driving Safety – August 2015

Wellness Plan and Coordinating Care – July 2015

Tune ups, Maintenance and Possible Spare Parts – July 2015

Six Dimensions of Wellness – July 2015

Morning Edition Walking Piece – June 2015

MD Recommendations – June 2015

Informing the Web of Care – Advanced Directives -June 2015

The Web of Caring Part 1 – May 2015

The Web of Caring Part 2 – May 2015

Wellness Matters – April 2015