Has Grenelda been Running Your Life?

I had a Grenelda moment last week! Grenelda Thurman, along with her husband Herman, are the fictional characters created in Living on Purpose. Grenelda and Herman are the ones living your life when you are not paying attention.

John and I were at the greenhouse when he burst out laughing. I was wearing two different sandals! As you can see, they couldn’t be more different from each other – one plain gray and the other bedazzled turquoise. And, yes, I do know that one has a toe strap and the other doesn’t. In my own defense, they both are well-worn and molded to my feet, so feel very similar when I’m walking.

At first I had a moment of concern about my memory, but quickly realized that Grenelda had stepped into my life. I definitely wouldn’t have left the house with two different sandals! It was a moment of having so much going on that I hadn’t pay attention to what I had on my feet. It served as a reminder for me to slow down and get myself present. The upside is that my friends have had a great laugh!

Recognizing that Grenelda has stepped in is powerful because she helps you lighten up about your “oops” moments. I could have felt embarrassed and said, “Let’s go home immediately so I can change shoes!” That statement would have been attached to me berating myself for not only putting on two different shoes, but also not even realizing it. I could have let myself spin down for the rest of the day or week.

You can take action more quickly and interrupt a downward spiral when you recognize Grenelda is living your life. The Thurmans are a light-hearted reminder that you are not fully present in your life and it’s time to get focused.

“Lightening up creates possibility, while heaviness, guilt, and depression foster immobility.”

Living on Purpose, Brown, Paulson, and Wolf

Grenelda shows up at work, too. She is the one who says “yes” to a project when you don’t have enough time to complete what’s already on your calendar. She runs herself ragged, putting out fire after fire without stopping to see how you could work more easily. She runs the show when you are on automatic pilot.

Are you feeling overwhelmed? If so, check to see if Grenelda has stepped in. It’s time to give yourself a break and lighten up. What would it be like if you were in charge of your life rather than having Grenelda or Herman run things? Share your Grenelda and Herman moments in the comments below. As they say, laughter is the best medicine.


  1. Grenelda Thurman Lessons - Purposed Lives - April 18, 2022

    […] beat yourself up for it? It wasn’t what you had intended at all. That is often a sign that Grenelda or Herman Thurman have stepped into your life. If you were paying attention you never would have […]