Monthly musing from Rebecca Crichton

Many years ago I had a conversation that helped me articulate how I do what I do. I was talking with a successful businessman who liked to quote advice from Steven Covey, author of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. He quoted the second habit: “Begin with the End in Mind,” assuming I shared that approach with him.

It is always uncomfortable to tell someone that an assumption they have about you – which they are certain is flattering and meant as a compliment – is untrue.

Nonetheless, I explained that I actually saw it differently. I adhered to the ‘Way of the Teacher’ from Angeles Arrien’s The Four-Fold Way: Walking the Paths of the Warrior, Teacher, Healer, and Visionary. The mantra for the Teacher, which I read when I was pursuing my Master’s in Organization Development, stated: ‘Open to Outcome, Not Attached to Outcome.’

I knew that was meant for me. My life unfolded with outcomes I never would have imagined. When I look at my life, I realize that I do both a backward and forward dance. I connect the dots of my path to where I am now and I follow the crumbs – a modern-day Gretel – to what is next. I pay attention to both my history and my intuition. I am continuing to become.

I believe we all are continuing to become, even as that is different from what we imagined or planned. This is true for organizations as well as individuals, and is reflected in the discussions Ruth and I keep having about what it is we want to do to keep NWCCA relevant and viable. Now into our 5th year of creative professional collaboration, we are committed to both sustaining and re-creating ourselves and this organization going forward.

In February 2019, we started a Featured Resource, focusing each month on a theme we felt would be enriching to the lives of our readers. For 2021, we are exploring a different approach to Creative Aging.

We are dubbing our new approach to personal essays, Reflections: Past and Future. To kick off the year, we have veteran TV journalist and professor of journalism Peter Herford’s evocative essay about streaming now and viewing experiences of the past.

Happy 2021. Just writing those numerals makes me feel better. May this New Year give us opportunities for continued learning, reflecting and becoming.


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A conversation with the authors of
The Elderwise Way: A Different Approach to Life with Dementia

Thursday, February 25, 1 – 2 PM. Presented in partnership by King County Library System,Northwest Center for Creative Aging and Seattle Public Library.
Sandy Sabersky, Elderwise visionary and co-founder, and NWCCA Associate Director Ruth Neuwald Falcon have written a deeply insightful book that offers ways to enjoy, connect with, and support family members, friends, or neighbors who have memory loss.

More details on this and other virtual offerings on our Events page.

Washington State Department of Health Corona Virus Survey

The DOH is seeking respondents from across the state. The survey asks questions related to behavioral, economic, social and emotional impacts and needs. Washington health departments will use the results to help our communities recover. Click the link or call 855-530-5787.

National Daily Health Survey for COVID-19

A research study from Stanford Medicine. The goal is to learn and predict which geographical areas will be most impacted by coronavirus based on how you are feeling. This information will be used to inform local and national responses, such as redirecting medical resources or improving policies and public guidance.