Monday, November 30, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-30-09

"We often take for granted the very things
that most deserve our gratitude."

-- Cynthia Ozick

Up until the last few years, I wasn't grateful on a regular basis. There might be whole days or even strings of many days without the thought of gratitude for something. Sad, but true. But, I have turned that around completely now.

Each day now, I find myself grateful for more and more things in greater quantity. I now practice it all my waking hours to the point that now hardly an hour goes by without my having gratitude for something or someone. It is closer and closer to pure joy and awe.

I'll give you some examples. Trash collection. The more I think about this service, the more gratitude I have for it. I take trash out and put it in a receptacle and once a week the truck comes and takes it away. Can you imagine a month without trash collection? We would be buried.

Here's another: running water. In terms of history, it was a nanosecond ago that we had to go down to the creek with buckets and carry it back to the house. If you wanted hot water, you had to heat it on the stove. Just think what it took in labor to have a hot bath. Now, I just get in the shower and turn it on (probably the other way around. . .) and there it is. It is effortless. Anytime I want a drink, I lift the handle and there it is: clean, cool water.

These two things are commonly taken for granted, yet other than a roof over my head and clothes on my body, they are at the top of the list of things that affect my life. There is a long list of these kind of things that we can focus on and be truly grateful for every day. Like the computer I'm typing on and the Internet I'm connected to. It is all so awesome to contemplate.

How about the weather? I look forward every day to experiencing the weather. Frankly, I could care less now what the weather will be like, but that I enjoy every moment of it. Yesterday we had 30-50 mph winds all day. It was glorious. Cloudy, overcast, sunny, cold, warm, rainy, dry, they are all so perfect and all so very interesting. I used to complain about the weather. I NEVER complain about the weather now. Each day is like a snowflake--all different in some way and each unique.

These are just a few examples of how I find gratitude in every single hour of every day. It is a whole new world for me in my later life. You might say, I have been reborn. I can now find joy anytime I decide to open myself up to experiencing it. There are no limits to how much gratitude I can have. The more I find, the more I find.

This change has been gradual and has really moved quickly in the last few years. There is a book I read that really had a large influence on getting me started on this path. It is Power In Praise by Merlin R Carothers. Books that I read later kicked it into high gear. Some of these books are, The Gratitude Effect by Dr John Demartini, The Astonishing Power of Emotions by Esther and Jerry Hicks, The Power of Intention by Dr. Wayne W Dyer, and many others. Their influence of directing me toward gratitude for everything has been life changing.

You will find, as I have, that becoming a gratitude finder will be the best thing that will ever happen in your life. Ever.

I Am Thankful Every Waking Hour!

Spread Some Joy Today--Feel the joy that comes from being thankful every hour. It's okay to smile outwardly. Inside your ecstatic! Way cool.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-29-09

"Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile,
a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest
act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around."

-- Leo Buscaglia

How about hardly ever?

That would be way cool.

I Have The Power and An Abundance To Give!

Spread Some Joy Today--Smile at everyone you see today, offer a kind word to all that you can. Your day will be a joy!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-28-09

"All my life I have tried to pluck a thistle and plant a flower
wherever the flower would grow in thought and mind."

-- Abraham Lincoln

Get a few million people doing this and it is a very different planet!

Let it start with me!

I Have The Power To Change The World! It Starts With Me Changing My World!

Spread Some Joy Today--See if you can pluck at least one thistle and plant one flower today.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-27-09

"If it's never our fault, we can't take responsibility for it.
If we can't take responsibility for it, we'll always be its victim."

-- Richard Bach

When many of us were young, we learned very well that being at fault meant punishment of some kind, and that caused pain of one kind or another. So, it became foolish to accept responsibility for something even when we were asked directly about it. It became acceptable, and may I even say, desirable to lie about it regardless of how we felt inside or whether we thought they believed us or not. It was like a basic survival learning experience of the law of cause and effect. We knew what the effect was if we were the cause.

Somehow we missed learning the real law of cause and effect and so many of us have carried this basic survival learning into adulthood; albeit, less blatantly. Blame is still easier and safer we think. But is it?

A long time ago I learned about a psychological game that makes this basic survival experience so clear to me. I see it so easily in others and then I also have learned to see it in myself and then stop and get a better handle on my thinking and actions. Here is the game:

Draw a triangle and at one point write the word Persecutor, at the next point (either one), write the word Victim, and at the last point, write the word Rescuer. Now, once you get a handle on this game, you may see it being played by a number of people including relatives. It's pretty logical. First someone is playing the Victim portion of the game. They need a Persecutor to blame for their problems for it would be impossible in this game to accept responsibility for any of their actions. Then, there is someone who is playing the Rescuer part. They are trying to point out things that can be done to alleviate the problem, move forward, etc., but the Victim will never, ever listen seriously to a Rescuer; however, they really need them in this game. If the other two are not always in the game, there is nothing for the Victim, or the Persecutor, or the Rescuer.

For much of my life, I was a Rescuer. I call it 'swimming upstream.' It is never effective in the game because no one wants to be rescued. Logic would dictate they want to be rescued, but really, they love playing the part. They've grown accustomed to it.

There's only one way out. Step away from the game. There's only one way to step away from the game: Begin accepting responsibility for your thinking and your actions. People will still be playing the Persecutor with you, but you won't be jumping in playing the Rescuer, so you're on the outside looking in. When you are there, it is pretty clear that it's a game. Otherwise, you will always be the game's Victim. (Here's a link to see more about the Karpman Drama Triangle.)

Here's to accepting responsibility!

I Create My Own Reality!

Spread Some Joy Today--See if you see anyone playing the triangle game. . . Smile that you know the way out.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-26-09

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow."

-- Melody Beattie

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thank You For Reading!

Spread Some Joy Today--Hug a lot!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-25-09

"If a fellow isn't thankful for what he's got,
he isn't likely to be thankful for what he's going to get."

-- Frank A. Clark

There was a time in the not very distant past when I might have read this and said, 'what in the world is there to be thankful for in this situation?'

Think of it this way: a guy says, 'hey, I'll change when I get the money.' I've also heard it said that having more money just makes you more of what you already are.

I have finally learned this lesson after struggling with it for a very long time, and Vincent Roazzi says it so well, 'For things to change, you have to change.' This time, I'm changing my thinking first, then my success will last. It's like the poor person who won the lottery and is broke six months or a year later. The money didn't make them smarter, or wiser--just richer. For a while.

Being grateful for misfortune is a very important step in the process of change. Being thankful for what you have, sounds easier than being grateful for misfortune, but being grateful--honestly grateful--is truly a catalyst to positive change. Anyone can be grateful for good times and easy living. It takes committment and tenacity to be grateful when things are crashing around you. Yet, this is when it is really important and when it really matters.

Gratitude will open doors previously closed; it will open you to inspiration. It is a connection to God. There is so much to be thankful for and if you aren't seeing that, you're looking in the wrong places. Here's a quote from G. K Chesterton to help: "When we were children we were grateful to those who filled our stockings at Christmas time. Why are we not grateful to God for filling our stockings with legs?"

Let's start with gratitude for where we are and what we have, make it a habit, and also celebrate the opportunities that lie ahead before they actually show up. I tell you this from experience, that this habit alone will change your inner life dramatically and your external life will follow suit in due time. This time, when the 'good times' return, you will achieve a lasting joy and a permanent change.

I Am Thankful For EVERY Thing!

Spread Some Joy Today--When you wake up in the morning and before you nod off to sleep, see how many things you can be thankful for. The warmth of the bed, the crispness of the sheets, the smell in the air, the sunrise peeking through the window, the breath in your lungs. . .

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-24-09

"Do not look where you fell, but where you slipped."

-- African Proverb

The first couple times I read this quote, I didn't think much on it, yet the more I looked at it, the more powerfully wise it became to me.

Often times where we fall can be a great distance from where we slipped. Consider these thoughts: Was it the event that caused the fall, or was it the thinking that caused the event that caused me to fall? In this case, the fall would be a natural evolution of the thinking. I can think of many situations in my own life where this really helps me see where the problem really started.

The good news is that we can change the thinking so the slipping is either non-existent or kept to an absolute minimum, thereby staying upright.

Think about it!

I Can See Where My Thinking Has Brought Me!

Spread Some Joy Today--Pretend you put all your love into a pitcher. Now, in your mind, pour it over the head of someone you don't like very much. Make sure they get a really good coating on them. If you have some left (you know you do!), do it twice just to make sure.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-23-09

"Obstacles cannot crush me. Every obstacle yields to stern resolve.
He who is fixed to a star does not change his mind."

-- Leonardo da Vinci

When I think of Leonardo da Vinci and all the things he designed, painted, sculpted, and accomplished, I never think of him as even considering obstacles or even needing persistence. Isn't that just the way when you're looking back hundreds of years, or even last year or last month, you don't see the actual doing, but just the results, whatever they may be.

If Leonardo had obstacles, that makes me feel so much better because my obstacles seem so puny in comparison. I've heard it said that you get 20 people in a dark room and give someone your biggest problems and a half hour later, everyone is scrambling to get their original problems back. We pump them up, but there is a lot of air in our problems.

The good news, as with Leonardo, is that a stern resolve to stay focused on what it is you really want to accomplish will eventually overcome any and all obstacles. Then, as we have done so many times in the past, we can look back and laugh at what we thought were obstacles. Or, even better, we may not even recognize any obstacles.

I'm all for that!

I'm An Obstacle Crusher, An Obstacle Crusher . . . Watching Them Go By, My Oh My!

Spread Some Joy Today--Let's Just Go Crush A Few Obstacles Today. Let's Rumble!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-22-09

"Become a possibilitarian.
No matter how dark things seem to be or actually are,
raise your sights and see possibilities - always see them,
for they're always there."

-- Dr Norman Vincent Peale

When we have troubles, it is so easy to think on the dark side. It is so easy to think of despair, self-pity, and blame. It is easier still to listen to that inner voice telling you what a fool you've been and pointing out each and every turn and how so many others have conspired to lay this all on you layer after layer until the sheer weight of it is depressing. It is in this darkness that possibilities seems so far off in another time when life was better and things were good.

No matter how dark it may seem, hope is the possibilities of positive change that only require opening your eyes toward them. It is in the possibilities and the continual looking toward them that we can see a way out. It is there. It always has been, and always will be.

I think that it was Bob Proctor in the audio program, The Power To Have It All, that Bob said that the Airplane has been here forever, but it was only in the last hundred or so years that it became a reality. All the materials were here and available waiting for the right people to make the right combinations and produce the result. He said that this was true of every invention. If you think about that, it has to be true. All the materials were certainly here. It is possibilities. All it required was someone or many to focus on the possibility and make it a reality.

Keep your sights on possibilities. It is hope in action. It is life-giving and enthusiasm-creating. There is so much light available in that. Become a possibilitarian!

Possibilitarian. I Like That Word.

Spread Some Joy Today--Share Your Hope With Someone Who Could Use Some.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-21-09

"You cannot prevent the birds of sorrow from flying over your head,
but you can prevent them from building nests in your hair."

-- Chinese Proverb

I absolutely love this proverb and it is so full of wisdom. Though things happen all around you, this does not mean that they must have any effect on you. You get to choose what you think and how you feel about it. Gather troubles and make them your own, or let them float on by as a twig floats down the river. There it is and there is goes. See ya! Ba-bye now!

If you've had nests in your hair--and you know who you are--take heart! Encourage those birds to move to a new home and shake that hair out, or maybe even get a good haircut, perm or color. Change it up. You're on the loose and looking for good times today and planning for joy tomorrow! It is amazing what can be done in such a short time. Who knew it could be that easy?

Birds Of A Feather. You Get To Choose The Feather.

Spread Some Joy Today--Maybe Send A Thank You Card To Someone Today. The Friends You'll Make . . .

Friday, November 20, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-20-09

"How far you go in life depends
on your being tender with the young,
compassionate with the aged,
sympathetic with the striving,
and tolerant of the weak and strong.
Because someday in life
you will have been all these."

-- George Washington Carver

Words to live by.

What Goes Around Comes Around. . .

Spread Some Joy Today--Watch In Awe As Someone Smiles Back At You.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-19-09

"The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains.
The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires."

-- William Arthur Ward

In one way or another, I have been teaching all my life. As the oldest of five, I was thrust into this role at an early age. As a teacher I have evolved through the levels as shown in the quote above. I learned from watching other teachers and how they did things and how people responded to them--especially how I responded to them. You see, as a teacher, I am also a life-long student. The more I know, the more I see there is to know.

Considering all the teachers I've seen, the ones I even remember well were inspiring. Oh, they taught the curriculum, but they did it in a way that had me owning it, immersing myself in it, and loving it. My aim was to inspire others as they inspired me.

What I learned was that inspiration is not a tool in a tool belt, like explaining, telling or demonstrating. It is more a gift that is given to others because you are inspired. I guess it takes one to know one. . .

I don't try to inspire people. I seek inspiration every day in every way that I can. I seek to be inspired. I think it comes from delight and wonder. I might see it in a scene in a movie, a line in a song, a guitar solo, words on a page, looking at nature, the joy of a photograph, or a hundred other ways. I seek it and am open to it and it just comes right in and I am delighted, and in awe of how that happened.

If I could teach anything well, I would love to teach people to be open to and even to seek out daily inspiration. It is life-transforming once you get hold of it. Inspiration is so much fun!

Close your eyes. Think of someone you totally love. Picture them in your mind. See their smiling face. See your love reflected back at you. Let that thought pour over you like a pitcher of it being poured over your head. You are immersed in it. Enjoy it for a few moments. You've just been inspired!

The next half hour will be AWESOME!!!

Inspire Yourself! You Know You Want To!

Spread Some Joy Today--Feel The Joy In Your Love To Others Being Reflected Back To You!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-18-09

"Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish."

-- John Quincy Adams

I love this quote. If you haven't read John Adams by David McCullough, I highly recommend it. It is a powerful story of one of the founders of our American government, a President, father of a President in a way that lets you get to know the man and also get an idea of the challenges he faced.

Considering the difficulties that John Quincy Adams faced, it is so interesting that he could say the quote. The difficulties were monumental and were steadily growing more challenging.

When I think of what President Adams went through routinely over his lifetime, any challenges that I have faced in my life become very, very, very small. That is where I like them, but the reality is that we all think our problems are huge.

This makes patience and perseverance excellent allies in the quest for smaller problems.

Presto! Chango! No Problemo!

Spread Some Joy Today--Pretend That Just For Today, You Have No Problems. How Does It Feel?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-17-09

"If I had eight hours to cut down a big tree,
I'd spend six hours sharpening the axe."

-- Abraham Lincoln

This causes me to think about the current lethargic business climate. There are some very targeted growth spots, but generally business is very slow compared with two years ago. So, what does one do in this kind of business climate in order to move forward? Sharpen the axe.

Stephen Covey in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, stated that one of the seven habits--habit number seven--was to sharpen the saw. He called that, principles of balanced self-renewal.

I am of the opinion that this is an absolutely perfect time to sharpen your business and personal skills and increase your knowledge. We need to break out all the blades and get them all sharpened. It's time to sharpen the sales staff with some basic and advanced training to move them up a few notches, so when the business climate is more conducive to business, they can maximize sales opportunities.

Whatever business you are in, now is a perfect time to get more training and to change procedures and improve operations. When it is busy, you know there is no time to get these things done. Now is perfect timing.

How about the receptionist? Brush up on answering the phone. Change the procedures and put a person on the phone! Humans want to talk with humans. Many of those automatic answering programs are counterproductive. Many think they are saving money, when I believe it is costing them plenty. Every missed call is a problem.

How about internal and external communications with prospects and customers? Now is a great time to redesign, realign, refocus, and generally improve how you communicate with your prospects, clients and even your employees.

All of these and many more things are sharpening the axe in preparation for felling the tree swiftly when the time comes. The amount of time, energy and money spent in this area will for sure and for certain bring improvements that will make a difference now and an even greater difference when business turns around. Think of this as being spring training getting ready for the regular season.

There's no better time than now!

Improvements Under Construction!

Spread Some Joy Today--Smile. When People Ask You Why You're Smiling, Say You're Sharpening The Axe For Abe Lincoln.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-16-09

"Man must cease attributing his problems to his environment,
and learn again to exercise his will and his personal responsibility."

-- Albert Schweitzer

This quote reminds me of when a little kid is caught doing something they shouldn't and they immediately say, "I didn't do it," and the other extreme of Flip Wilson's comment of, "the devil made me do it." Or, maybe it was the circumstance that made me do it. . .my alarm clock didn't go off, there was a wreck on the freeway, my car wouldn't start, my cell phone died. It could have been anyone or anything, but us.

Somehow we think those excuses, real or imagined, will make it sound better and be a "good" excuse for not coming through with whatever we needed to do. Having been a manager since 1975, I have heard many hundreds of lame excuses for why someone didn't come through. Since I have heard so many and have had knowledge of most being totally made up, I am skeptical when I hear one anytime now.

Of course, I have to admit, should I desire to be honest, that I have partaken in excuse making myself on many occasions. I'll tell you a doosey that I've never told before, just to show you how lame I could be.

I was driving a 5-yard dump truck for a landscaping company I worked for and I was hired out to rock quarry company to do small deliveries for a period of time. I had a tendency to oversleep or shut the alarm off thinking I'll close my eyes for just a minute and then an hour or two would pass. I was already on the bad side of the boss for being late before and here I was waking up late again.

I got ready, jumped in the truck and took off to my destination about 15 miles away. About two thirds of the way, I pulled over to the side of the road and put my emergency flashers on, then I got out, opened the hood and pulled out the coil wire from the distributor just enough to not make contact. Some motorist stopped by to help and decided to check the wires and wouldn't you know, he found it! I got his name and went on my way. He was to be my really good backup to my story of the truck breaking down. I guess it worked, but it was really lame and when I look back 40 plus years at that, it is lamer still.

So, I've heard a lot and made some myself. My plan in today's world is to accept responsibility for my actions and not make excuses. It is a challenge. Excuses work so well we think. It's not me, it's the economy. Business is off, it's not my fault. The dog ate my homework.

I'm working on it--daily. I want to admit it's my fault when I know deep down it is. I could have done something and I didn't. I don't see any value in blame, but I do see plenty of value in accepting responsibility for my actions--or even for my non-actions. If I had a chance, and I didn't do it, I blew it. If I did it and I performed poorly, I accept responsibility either way.

Of course, sometimes it really isn't our fault and that's okay too. Now I just want to know that I gave it my best shot, win or lose and not blame anything or anyone. With this I really feel good. How about you?

I Accept Responsibility For Me!

Spread Some Joy Today--Listen To People Blaming Circumstances And See If You Hear Yourself. . .

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-15-09

"You cannot remedy anything by condemning it."

- Dr Wayne W Dyer

When I first read this line, it jumped out at me. I think it is a very powerful short sentence on how to be happy or have more happiness.

I've heard my share of angry people. Angry at the economy, the neighbors, the stupid people at work, the traffic, local politics, and the list goes on and on. I even used to get angry at some angry people as if that somehow cancelled it out. You know, you just get sick and tired of listening to it, or they start pointing their anger toward you and you feel a need to give some back or defend yourself in some silly way.

Wayne Dyer goes on to say, "If you're angry at those around you for being angry people, you're attempting to remedy the situation through condemnation." Of course! I hadn't thought of it that way before, but it rings so true that it is impossible for me to deny it anymore. That's why war isn't a solution, it's a condition.

Wayne goes on to say, "You cannot attract __________ into your life by hating anything about what you've allowed yourself to become." The blank line is mine because you can fill it in with a myriad of things. How about being overweight? So, you can't hate your body or your fat or how you look and at the same time attract how you want it to be. I love his quote here because it also ends with a message to accept some personal responsibility of the condition. If I'm overweight, that is something I created and being angry at it cannot serve me.

You could fill in that blank with money. Hating the fact that you lack money will not attract money. How about the neighborhood. You cannot attract a better, more peaceful, well cared for neighborhood into your life by hating where you are now.

I've heard it said that the main value of anger is to lead you to make a change via a decision to change. I could go for that sometimes, but once the decision is made, anger must be left behind and focus only on the positive of what you want instead of fighting against what you don't want.

Somehow we seem to think that if we were to fight and get rid of something we don't like, then what we like would be all there would be. That cannot be true. It cannot be destroyed. Turn away from it, focus on what you want and let what is back there be there. Getting rid of cancer doesn't create health. Getting rid of anger doesn't create happiness. Fighting is not the way.

The best way is to just let go of condemnation, anger, disapproval. Just let it go. Having these things is like always paddling upstream against the current. Letting it go is like putting the oars in the boat and letting the current take you where you need to go, trusting that it will come to pass. Everything you want is downstream.

Ahhhhhhh! That is so much better!

I Love Floating Downstream. Life Is Good!

Spread Some Joy Today--If You Hear Anger Today, Send Them Some Loving Thoughts. You Know They Need Them, And, You Need To Send Them.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-14-09

"If a man empties his purse into his head, no man can take it away from him. An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest."

- Benjamin Franklin

Learning is exciting to me. There were times in school when I absolutely hated it. Not the learning, but the poor presentation of knowledge. Matter of fact, there were very few teachers that I would call very good. The rest were mediocre at best, but I made do with what was in front of me.

It wasn't until after I got out of school and began a career in sales that I really started reading and studying. I wanted to learn and loved it. I found everything I could. I read the books, listened to the recordings and attended seminars. Over the years, I have spent untold thousands on this pursuit of knowledge. It has been worth every cent.

I hear people tell me that they can't finish a book because they fall asleep, or they haven't got time or fill in the blank. I used to fall asleep reading as well. Then I found audiobooks. Commuting 52 miles each way to my job started me on the path of audiobooks. I read several hundred books on tape over the years.

There is one series of audiobooks that I ran across and bought a couple on subscription. After listening to two or so, I called the company and bought the whole set of 60 audiobooks all at once. I couldn't wait to get back in the car to continue the learning. Most of these audiobooks were from a now defunct company called Managers Edge. Most were biographies of famous people like Henry Ford, Harvey Firestone, Andrew Carnegie, Ray Kroc, and on and on. Many were biographies of companies and how they got started like Holiday Inn, Xerox, Piper Airplanes, Hilton Hotels, The LearJet, and many others. I was just amazed at what I learned about these great businesses and business leaders. Many of them I never heard of until I listened to the book, such as Schlumberger, Royal Little, and many others.

I loved those tapes and listened to many several times. In 2004, I started an eBay book business and shortly afterward, I decided to search for these to resell. I bought every one I could get my hands on and I have sold several thousand dollars worth. I now have probably the world's largest collection of them for sale. I have found many other people who like them just as much as I did and it has been a real pleasure to find them and offer them to others.

The audiobook actually keeps you awake, so it is a great way to learn. On that long drive, I used to listen to music, but I would get sleepy and the audiobooks kept me wide awake with the side benefit of learning. So, if you have a hard time reading like I did for a long time, try audiobooks. You can get unabridged audiobooks of many books and that is word for word what is in the book. If you want to double your learning curve, read along while you listen.

I have found that every cent that I have spent on learning to be of superior value and like Benjamin Franklin says, no one can take it from you and it always pays the best interest.

I Can Read Books With My Ears! How Cool Is That?

Spread Some Joy Today--Buy Yourself An Audiobook And See What You Can Learn.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-13-09

"No kind action ever stops with itself. 
One kind action leads to another. 
Good example is followed. 
A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, 
and the roots spring up and make new trees. 
The greatest work that kindness does to others 
is that it makes them kind themselves."

- Amelia Earhart

Ain't it the truth!

One of my favorite authors who really helped me get going in sales way back in '72-73 is Frank Bettger. His book, "How I Raised Myself From Failure To Success In Selling" is a classic and is very encouraging for someone new to sales (or old, for that matter). In it, he talks about getting fired from a baseball team because he looked like he just had no energy and he was dragging the team down. So, he decided to become enthusiastic and created the phrase, "to become enthusiastic, act enthusiastically!" This became his central theme and I have several copies of his signed books, all of which say "Enthusiastically, Frank Bettger."

The quote above is very similar to me: To become kind, act with kindness! Ain't it the truth. You already know it. You know when you act with kindness that you feel great and that you can see on the face of the other that they feel great too. The thing we don't see is how that feel great feeling is passed on by that other person throughout their day or even into days ahead.

I try to remember to give sincere compliments wherever I go, to people I see, whether for the first time or the hundredth time. I am always looking for something to compliment people on. Many times, there is no discernable reaction to my comment, but I was sincere and it felt really good to me, so that was all that matters. But, you know, they heard it, and they appreciated it even though they may not show it immediately. And, again, the best part is that it not only has an effect on them, but on others they interact with throughout the day. How cool is that?

Sometimes I do this in bulk and in what some might think are "crazy ways." I'll give you just one example that I remember as a bit off the chart. I was a sales manager at a small fledgling dealership in 1989. It was gloomy and struggling. I wanted to inject some life into it and did a number of things that helped. They had a fairly strong service business. Matter of fact, that was what kept the dealership afloat, I'm sure.

So I had this crazy idea come into my head to give a dozen roses to all the employees (13 of them) and have a blank card on it, so they could take it home and pass some of the pleasure on to their spouse or loved ones.

It was a bit crazy because I didn't have much money, but I broke out the credit card and bought 16 dozen roses of all different colors, one dozen each in vases, arranged and delivered. It was $660. I couldn't really justify the expense when my reasoning tried to stop me, but, I was jazzed and I acted immediately. I had each employee stop by the office on their way home and I had them choose one they liked and I thanked them for their service to the company. For all they knew, the company bought them. I also gave one set to the General Manager and Owner who worked at a different location.

You had to have been there to see the looks on all their faces. It was priceless. And, guess what happened when they went home. I am sure that it was a hit there as well. In addition, it is the kind of gesture that you so rarely see. It was worth every cent and then some.

(I was only at that store for 3 months, when a marvelous opportunity came to me unexpectedly. Is there a correlation? It was an opportunity that changed my life, and that is still with me to this day, 20 years later!)

Many times, I get thoughts like this and I am happy that I act on many of them even though some are a bit over the edge like this one. But, you know, life is all too short, and to miss an opportunity like that, is not good.

I call those thoughts inspirations. Typically, right after you get one, your reasoning facility takes charge to try to justify that thought using logic and reason. The typical result would be letting the inspiration go down the drain.

If you ever have any of these strange, yet wonderful inspirations, I hope you act on them. Think of the joy that you will create for yourself and many others! I think that is a great reason! And, you never know--that act of kindness might have an interesting side effect. . .

I Act With Kindness Every Day. It Is A Joy To Give!

Spread Some Joy Today--Look For Things To Compliment People On Today And Tell Them!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-12-09

"People who say, "it cannot be done,"
should not interrupt the people who are doing it."

- George Bernard Shaw

Back in 1984, a friend gave me this quote, though he did not tell me who said it. I assumed it was him and attributed it to him for 24 years. It was only recently that I found it was George Bernard Shaw. So I wrote the quote on a business card and kept it in my wallet for those many years. It has always inspired me to reach out and do things, think things that I feel strongly about and may not be in the norm, politically correct or well accepted.

There are plenty who are ready and willing to rain on your parade. It almost seems as if they get pleasure from it. The truth is, they don't matter. If you're doing it and it is working for you, to heck with the naysayers.

Another point: you don't need permission. I rarely ask for permission of others to do anything. It is the approval that many seek, but I would rather make a mistake than wait for approval. It could have been done by now. You know?

There's an old saying, "I would rather beg forgiveness than ask permission." I've always liked that phrase. . .

There's another one that Lee Ioccoca used to use on television commercials: "lead, follow or get out of the way." These all work together like a team.

It all comes down to the key ingedient: Decision. It seems to me the hardest thing is making the decision to go this way or that, then it seems so easy to get moving once that huge decision is out of the way.

Amelia Earhart said it this way: "The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity." I like how easily she throws around a heavy word like tenacity. One of my favorite quotes of hers on this same subject is this: "The most effective way to do it, is to do it." She obviously was a doer and if you've ever looked at her quotes, she was a thinker as well. Maybe that's where Nike got their "Just Do It" slogan.

You will be amazed what you can do when you give yourself permission--permission to decide; permission to act; permission to fail, and permission to succeed. Be your own best judge. It is okay to ask opinions, but that is all they will be. The real decision is always yours.

Let's just go for it! Ask yourself two questions I am fond of: 1. What is it that I am really afraid of? and 2. What's the worst thing that could happen?

Let's do this thing!

I Have The Power To Decide And Act!

Spread Some Joy Today--Make A Decision You've Been Putting Off. Do It Now!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-11-09

"If you travel alone, you can probably go faster.
But the journey will never be as rewarding,
and you probably won't be able to go as far."

- John Maxwell

I used to do everything myself. I used to think about what I was going to do. The key phrase is "used to." Now I include others and it is a whole different result and benefit.

Two years ago, I started a consulting business. I didn't want to do it alone. So, I found a person that I thought a lot of and believed in and gave him half of my business. Some might think that I was crazy to give away 50% of my business. To me, I thought I might gain 50% more than I had. That has proven to be more like 200% more than I had. There is a synergy effect (1 + 1 = 3) when you find complimentary minds to add to your own. It was the best decision without a doubt.

This has led to a "partnering mentality" in our business. We are constantly open to and seeking like-thinking minds to join with and thereby create more synergy in our own business while creating a synergy effect in their business or life. Matter of fact, my ambition is to have hundreds of partners in this same method, each growing their own success, while each of us increasing our success as a related group.

It sounds strange, but it is much like the more you give away, the more you have. I liken it to having 10% of 100 million or 100% of ten million. I'll take the 10% for sure. Matter of fact, that is my number. I want to own 10% of 100 highly successful businesses, having helped many, many people to have their own business and to grow and thrive. These businesses would do a wide range of things. There it is. That is my major ambition in life--to achieve this result. It's the first time I've publicly stated it.

But, it's not me. It is us. We are achieving this in very small ways already, and working toward the larger picture as we grow and learn ourselves. I can tell you that this is very satisfying to think about. I love the entrepreneurial spirit. I love the idea of companies sharing ownership with their interested and motivated team members. There is something special about it.

Of course, I am relating this to business, but the quote above can easily relate to sharing anything in your life with others and have a more rewarding experience. That's what the idea of marriage is, team sports, golf, church, clubs and organizations, schools and colleges, and more.

If you agree with the quote, how can you share or partner with others to create synergy? What organizations can you contribute to? How can you grow your business by 'giving away' portions of it? How can you share with others so that you both benefit and in so doing create something even larger or better? There are so many ways. I am doing it now with this writing.

Find some ways to share yourself with others that creates value and benefit to both while creating something larger together. Find some ways to share and create joy. Multiple joys even!

Helping Others Succeed Is Ultimately Self-Serving!

Spread Some Joy Today--Want To Help An Entrepreneur? Go To www.Kiva.Org. Give A New Start On Life With Spare Change!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-10-09

"If you would thoroughly know anything, teach it to others."

- Tyon Edwards

"We cannot teach people anything;
we can only help them discover it within themselves."

- Galileo Galilei

It may not seem that these two quotes go together, but to me they are a powerful combination.

It is only in recent years that I have become aware that one of the best and most effective ways of really knowing a thing is to teach it. It is in the attempt to interpret what you know so that someone else can learn it that creates the need for the teacher to understand it better. It is one thing to learn, another to teach that learning to another.

My aspiration has always been to write and to teach. I've never taught in school, but became a sales manager because teaching is what I saw a good sales manager as doing to be effective. As a result of this, I've studied sales management, sales, psychology, and philosophy in order to be the best that I could be at that position. I took an accumulation of that knowledge and experience and wrote a book on sales called, Accepting the Sales Challenge. All of this not only fulfilled my aspiration but it has given me more to give as I have travelled through life.

More recently, I have begun to understand the quote by Galileo, "We cannot teach people anything; we can only help them discover it within themselves." As a result of my increased understanding of this quote, I have become a more effective teacher. It is less like putting one brick on top of another and more like focusing a lens.

By learning to teach a thing, your own knowledge is widened to apply more interpretations of a subject. I'll give you an example. I teach about commercial trucks; the different body applications, how they are used, etc. A service or utility body is typically a body with doors on the side and compartments behind the doors. The idea is to be able to store tool and parts inside, keeping them dry and safe. I teach this by calling those doors closets. Everyone can understand a closet and more importantly, they can understand what we do with closets: we fill them up and they stay full. This relates clearly to the service body and how easily they can be overloaded because of how we feel about closets. So that is an effective interpretation which helps the student not just know what the product is, but to understand the product and its uses and limitations.

This ability to thoroughly know the subject through teaching it is a powerful tool. I try to achieve this with any subject I am interested in. This includes the kind of thoughts I express in these Daily Inspirations. And, it is in the actual doing of the thinking and writing of these that I am expanding my own awareness and knowledge.

Consider things in your life that you would like to thoroughly know and understand. Find some ways to share it after you have studied it for a time. You will find, as I have, that in sharing it with others, you own knowledge and skills are enhanced.

When The Student Is Ready, The Teacher Will Appear!

Spread Some Joy Today--Share A Powerful Positive Thought With Someone!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-9-09

"I don't like that man. I must get to know him better."

- Abraham Lincoln

"I destroy my enemies when I make them my friends."

- Abraham Lincoln

Have you ever met someone you just don't like? I'm sure you have. I have met several. It's like they just rub you the wrong way somehow. Sometimes, it is hard to even put your finger on what it is exactly. Sometimes it is glaringly clear! You might even have some choice words for how you would describe those. I know I have.

When I was in grade school, I had the pleasure of dealing with a number of bullies. I was an easy target, I'm sure. They were always acting so tough. You know, the kind who grow up to be big, burly men who like to hit women and children to show off their strength. (Just a touch of sarcasm. . .) Anyway, every once in a while, I would see a crack in their facade and actually see a human being in there. Just like me.

When I was a very young sales manager, I had a Chevy factory rep call on me. He was rude and arrogant, never called before he just showed up and expected me to drop everything and deal with him. One day, I decided to say something to him. I said, "I don't like you. You are rude and arrogant. You never let me know you're coming and you want me to drop everything to listen to you." Well, you should have seen his chin hit the ground! He was shocked. He earnestly wanted to know more about why I felt that way and he vowed to change it immediately. We actually became friends. He invited me and my wife to dinner at their house and until they got transferred, we had a great relationship.

Sometimes people might need a little jolt to wake them out of their habitual operation. They may have no idea what effect they are having on people. Other times, you might need to catch them when they are alone and start up a conversation to learn more about them.

I can truthfully say that every person that I have not liked, when I learned more about them, I liked them more and even began to respect them, and perhaps even understand them in why they have the facade that hides the real person from most others. It's very much like the wizard in the Wizard of Oz. "Ignore that man behind the curtain!" How can I? That is the real deal!

Enemies. Ever have any? People working against you, doing what they can to be victorious over you? When I make them friends by refusing to fight in the war, they can become friends instead.

I learned a good deal about this from a very good friend named Dallan Santos. Why? Dallan just seems to love everybody with such a passion, that there is no such thing as an adversary. It is delightful and interesting to watch. Has such enthusiasm. You can see and feel the love he exudes in his face. He will just hug you until you soften. He doesn't give up. I've watched him turn angry buttheads into milktoast. He has that touch. He just loves people and I think he can see right through anyones facade. That is a powerfully good thing. Taking an adversary and making them a friend is one of the greatest successes possible in life, I think.

You know, we are all just looking for love and recognition and understanding. The more we give those things to other people, the more we get for ourselves. It is so interesting how that works. You have to give in order to get. Ahead of time.

Makes you just want to go find someone you don't like and make them a friend!

I Can Never, Ever Have Enough Friends!

Spread Some Joy Today--Tell A Few People You Love Them. It Will Make Their Day!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-8-09

"If you can't be happy where you are,
it's a cinch you can't be happy where you ain't."

- Charlie "Tremendous" Jones

We somehow think that circumstances, events, money, fame, love, a mate, a nice house, a secure job, or other external things have the power to give us happiness.

It isn't possible.

Happiness is something you and only you can give to yourself and it has nothing whatsoever to do with external things, circumstances or events. The love of our life doesn't have the power. Money doesn't have the power, security doesn't have the power. Only you and you alone have the power.

This is why I love Charlie "Tremendous" Jones' statement: "If you can't be happy where you are (where you live, what you have, who you're with), it's a cinch you can't be happy where you ain't (where you think you need to be in order to have happiness)."

Once this really settles into your thinking, and believe me, it took a while for me to really get this, it changes you as you feel so empowered that you really have the power to choose or not choose happiness. Not only that, but you have the power every second of every day. With that, you can actually see and feel yourself choosing to be unhappy sometimes. That is enlightening! It is so because you can then see how you have chosen unhappiness so many times in the past based solely on how you thought about something.

Once you have this power, I cannot imagine that you will ever let go of it. Though you may occasionally choose unhappiness again, you full well know, you can change it back instantly as you desire. That's like being a 5-star General, your being so in command.

Is this not the coolest thing possible? To know who's in charge and how it is done? It is awesome! You are awesome! Command those thoughts. Make that happiness. Savor the victory!

The sweet smell of success!

You Make Me Happy? Wrong! I Make Me Happy!

Spread Some Joy Today--Make Yourself Happy Today! For No Special Reason. Make Up One If You Feel You Need To.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-7-09

"God, grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
the courage to change the things I can;
and the wisdom to know the difference."

- Reinhold Niebuhr

I was talking briefly yesterday with a friend in the auto business. He talked of how slow the auto business is right now and that he was out talking to people a lot lately trying to drum up some business, but that it was tough. He can't wait for the economy to turn around and have things humming again. It is a refrain I hear a lot these days from people in the auto business and a lot of other businesses.

When will business change for the better? Is there a tactic that is working? Advertising methods that are working? How do you encourage people to spend their money and buy things? How long is it going to last? Am I going to be able to hold on until it turns around? What are the reasons for this problem? These and many others are questions being asked by salespeople, managers and business owners.

The question I don't hear but rarely is this: What can I do? What can I do to improve business? What can I do?

When we get to the point where we ask this question, we can move ahead. Up until this question is asked, it is all about what the problems are and what the situations are and how it sucks, how bad it is and how frustrating it is and when is it going to change? This year? Next year? It's all about the problem.

The question, what can I do? is focusing on possible solutions that you can control. Like the poem says, "God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. . ." This is a very powerful first step. So, step one is this: Ask the question, what can I do? Step two: let go of the problem. The problem is not in your control. Let it go. Seek peace.

Step three: As in the poem, ". . . the courage to change the things I can," seek to change what you do have control of. The number one thing that everyone on the planet has total and 100% control of is their thinking. Take control of your thinking and think positively toward solutions by avoiding discussing, mentioning, or thinking about the problem that you have no control over.

It has always been true in any economy that being around negative people will lead you toward negativity. Would you really and truly like to be the devil's advocate? As you focus any attention on the problem, you are that advocate. Let it go and avoid the news about it, people talk about it, Internet mention of it, all of it. Whatever you give your focus to is enhanced. By focusing on the problem, you are enhancing it. You know that isn't what you want, so stop it now.

". . . the wisdom to know the difference." It really does take some wisdom to see the difference. It is all too easy to discuss the issues of the day with people as if these are realities. The truth is that you create your own reality in what you give attention to and how you think about that. If you think it sucks, it surely does suck. If you choose to think it is okay, it is truly okay--to you. Remember, all you can control is your own thinking and actions, not everyone else's--not even any one else's.

Last for today, is to fill your new world with uplifting, encouraging thoughts. Make a list of things you can do. There are plenty of things you can do mentally and physically. Focus here and you will see things change for you.

[If you are having trouble making a list of things you can do and would some ideas, send me an email and I will give you some ideas based on your individual situation.]

I Have The Ultimate Power: My Own Thoughts!

Spread Some Joy Today--Don't Listen To ANYONE Speak Negative Thoughts In Your Presence Today. Stop Them Or Leave Them Immediately!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-6-09

"Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on
of an uncompleted task."

- William James

You can probably relate to the quote above. It is torture to keep a thing on your 'to-do' list that doesn't seem to get done. Maybe we don't have the resources just yet, or maybe you need someone else's help and don't know how to get that. It could be a hundred things and combination of things, yet the uncompleted task is still there. It is draining our energy.

I've tried very hard once I learned the value of it, to keep a to-do list. I even created my own design in a spiral bound booklet. They work very well when I remember to fill it in, which is about 80% of the time. I love checking them off when they are done.

Nowadays, I have so many more things going on that the task list doesn't get completed very well in many cases and that drags on you, putting the uncompleted task on the next day and the next. What to do?

Found a solution. Tested it. Love it. Problem solved. Here it is in case it can help you as well:

I have a list of things to do that has 20 spaces. At midway, I take a marking pen and draw a line after number 10. In the margin on the left, at the upper section, I write, "me," and on the lower section, I write, "the Universe."

So, here's the deal. I give all the hardest problems like ones I don't have a clue how to deal with, ones that are currently beyond my capability or knowledge, etc. to the Universe to handle. The rest of them (the easy ones), I give to myself to handle.

I started this just over a month ago and I tell you that this is one powerful solution, and here's the best part: IT WORKS LIKE MAGIC! Now, there is one key to this solution: You have to let go of the problem or task. You have to let the Universe take charge of it and you stay out of it. Just watch in amazement how the Universe will find ways to make things happen, attract things you need, change attitudes and much, much more. It blows my mind how cool this is--AND, how much more relaxed I am in comparison.

I recommend that you try it for yourself. Get a to-do list pad or day planner and draw the line in bold color halfway down the page, then mark them as indicated above. I do about a month ahead of time. Then, start assigning your toughest issues to the Universe.

Many times it is a person I am not sure how to improve a relationship with or I am having issues with. Maybe it is a boss, a co-worker, a spouse, etc. I just write their first name in the space. Or maybe it is your finances. I just write, "our finances," or something like that. It's like saying, "Universe, you have everything needed, you know every situation, I'm giving this issue to you for your perfect resolution."

Now, don't get impatient with the Universe. It has its own time frame and methods. Once you let it go, you have to let it alone. You can watch with interest, but not with anxiousness. You have to really let it go.

Of course, for those of you who are inclined, you certainly may substitute the word, "God," for the word, "Universe." Call it as you deem appropriate.

That's it. Now you can get on with your busier life with a coolness that you've been missing. Now you've got the power of the Universe working for you.

How cool is that?

I Don't Need To Do Everything. I've Got Help!

Spread Some Joy Today--It Is Compliment The Office People Day. If You're An Office People, Please Compliment Yourself. You Deserve The Praise!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-5-09

"Don't read a book and be a follower;
read a book and be a student."

- Jim Rohn

I adore Jim Rohn. I first heard him on a motivational tape that someone gave me when I was thinking about doing Shaklee, a multi-level marketing business, back in 1980. The people who wanted you to join would hand out these motivational cassette tapes for you to listen to in order to encourage you. They didn't encourage me, they fired me up!

So here was a guy named Jim Rohn talking to some group in Dallas, Texas and I was just hanging on his every word. I loved the way he spoke. It is so matter of fact, yet softly and with wit and wisdom, and humor. He has written several books and has many sets of motivational tapes, CD's and DVD's. I highly recommend any and all of them. He is a master and has been doing this since the 1960's.

Since that early introduction when I was about 30, I have listened to and read so many great authors of motivational and self-help materials. Out of each, I gather something of value making the effort worthwhile. Out of some, I gather a Mother Lode of gold that continues to enrich me many years later. That is worth the time again and again and again.

Jim has a book out called, Five Major Pieces To The Life Puzzle. This is a great book and essentially was the message on the first 90 minute cassette I got described above. My favorite of his tape sets is The Challenge To Succeed. You can find these on Amazon, Barnes & Noble or at Jim's website: He is in his 80's now, yet his legacy will endure because his messages are timeless.

Back to today's inspirational quote from Jim. I learned this early from Jim and have never stopped being a student. I am so grateful to those who introduced me to Jim Rohn, who has essentially become a mentor to me, though I have never met, or seen him in person. You just never know how your life and your willingness to share can touch someone like it touched me, and that touch can last for many years and be passed on to many others. That is so special. And, isn't that what love is?

Yet, I'm not a follower of Jim Rohn. I am a student of what he teaches. He is not the only teacher teaching it. And after many years of studying for myself, I am now a teacher of it. Isn't that interesting. . .

I've had people tell me that, "those people are just taking you for your money, that's all they want," and "that's just a bunch of psychobabble bs," and other crap. Of course, I always consider this: not one--not one of the people who have ever said anything like that has ever listened to even 5 minutes of a tape or read even 2 pages of a book by that author. So, I let them have their way. It is just a bunch of hooey.

Thank God for the hooey! That's what I say. It came when I needed it and it has fed me for years and years and I am a better person for it. I get to choose. For me.

I suggest to you that you find authors, tapes, books, whatever that give you positive, uplifting and enlightening information and you latch on to that and become a student. You will see the difference in yourself and recognize that new person and be pleased and grateful for the effort and the result.

Be a student of life!

I Am That I Am. That's Not All That I Am. I Can Learn. I Will Be More.

Spread Some Joy Today--Buy A Book or Tape That Uplifts You and Give It Away To Someone You Believe In. Share The Wealth!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-4-09

"So what do we do?
Anything - something. So long as we don't just sit there.
If we screw it up, start over. Try something else.
If we wait until we've satisfied all the uncertainties,
it may be too late."

- Lee Iacocca

"I move forword in my life every day, even if it's only a tiny step,
because I know that great things are accomplished with tiny moves,
but nothing is accomplished by standing still."

- Zig Ziglar

These are such motivating quotes to me. So many people are struck with fear. Fear of failure, fear of the unknown, what if this and what if that? They 'what if' themselves right into doing nothing for fear of making a mistake.

The biggest thing about making mistakes is what other people will think of us. I say, who cares? Go for it. I've made so many mistakes, I've stopped counting. Many of those attempts ended in failure. So what? Try again.

I want to always be branching out doing something that interests me. I don't do it necessarily to achieve something, but to take it from an idea to manifestation. That's achievement in itself to me.

So, you have this idea that it would be fun to play the guitar. You can picture yourself playing the guitar in your mind. Okay. Let's get it out of your mind and into manifestation. Go to the music store and talk to them about guitars and lessons. Then, buy one, rent one or borrow one and start the lessons. Don't be thinking you'll be the world's best player in a week, but just have some fun and realize that you have just taken a thought and turned it into a reality. That is plenty of fun right there.

I've played guitar since I was 16. In 1983 I decided I wanted to write songs. I took that thought and began moving forward by 'trying' to write songs. I didn't know how to write songs, I just got started. Within a year, I had written over 50 songs and recorded most of them and even recorded an album at a studio near Sacramento. All from a thought.

Now take those two things together. I decided that I wanted to share my songs and feelings live. I created an opportunity to lead worship at church. It was pitiful to start. I was doing it by myself scared and nervous, but doing it. I kept doing it and got a little better. This led to writing songs for the church and nine years of leading worship and playing in a worship band, running the sound room and much more. My songwriting improved dramatically, I actually became a musician instead of a guitar player, learned how to play bass guitar as well, and shared to my hearts content.

All of that was glorious and I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity--and most grateful for the thought and the decision to act. Also as a result of this, I started teaching others how to write songs. I developed a little course on songwriting and held a few classes (if you would like a copy, just send me an email). Several songs came out of those classes and were also played in church. It was kind of a rocking church. . .

So, it is interesting what you can do when you don't know what you are doing and you haven't got a clue how to get started. So many times we have those thoughts and we just let them die a slow death. Too bad.

Instead, be excited about making mistakes! Take those thoughts and make something happen by stepping out and trying. You never know where that will lead. It could be a mistake and be over quickly, but that would be no reason to stop trying things. My list of mistakes would fill a book. Who cares? It is wise to care more about what you think and very little about what others think.

Go for it. Make it a reality. You can do it. Tell me about it once you've done it, okay? Let's just have some fun and joy!

Let me leave you with one of my all time favorite quotes which I have thought of so often and love dearly:

"I would rather be ashes than dust! I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dry-rot. I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet. The function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days trying to prolong them. I shall use my time."

- Jack London

I Think. I Think I Want. I Think I Can. I Do. I Am.

Spread Some Joy Today--Take at least one thing you've thought about and have put off and get started on it. Art class, yoga class, building skyscrapers, leaping tall buildings, opening a petty zoo, starting a magazine, making a friend, doing a daily inspirations email, finishing college. You choose.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-3-09

"We judge others by their behavior.
We judge ourselves by our intentions."

- Ian Percy

"Judge not, that ye be not judged.
For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged:
and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again."

- The Bible, King James Version, St. Matthew 7:1-2

Yesterday, I talked about happiness. I did not mention it then, but one key to being a more happy person is becoming less judgmental of others.

It is so easy to judge others by their behavior, their looks, the words they speak, their attitude (such a vast subject. . .). Maybe it is because they are different from you or maybe it is someone who is in a position of authority and they are not doing things the way you would have them done. It is so easy that it is almost natural to judge others.

Putting ourselves above another is the main reason we judge. We think we are better, smarter, wiser, cooler, better dressed, whatever. The more we think we are right, the less right anyone else can be. There is no win-win in the judgement scenario.

Because being judgmental is entrenched in our thinking, it is good to work at removing it and the way to do that is practicing it--on purpose. Start with awareness that you are doing it. Then, pay attention to what you are thinking and saying to others and when you think or hear something judgmental, stop immediately--even mid-sentence.

Instead of the judgement, find ways to praise that person. Find things that you like about them and praise that. Praise is the most effective counter to judgement. Finding ways to like someone is so powerful. Everyone has positive qualities and though some people may keep them under wraps, they are there to be found.

When you find them and praise them, magical things happen. You will find that person being kinder and more respectful of you. It may even shock you. You will find that you have things in common and that will lead to even more knowledge about them. Then, as you learn more about them, you will find more to appreciate. I have known people that I disliked greatly that when I started finding things to praise about them, that I came to like and respect them a great deal. That is just fascinating to me.

Praise is attracting good things to you because you are in a positive, uplifting frame of mind and giving love. Judgment is making up your mind about someone before you know much about them. It is pushing things away from you. No good can come of it. There is such a clear difference between the two.

Now, again, the key is practice. It won't happen overnight, but it need not take years. Begin today. You will find it to be one of the most powerful tools for your happiness and the happiness of those around you.

You Are The Judge. . . What's The Verdict?

Spread Some Joy Today--Think of someone you dislike a lot and find something to praise about them. Maybe they have nice shoelaces. . .

Monday, November 2, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-2-09

"Events will take their course, it is no good of being angry at them; he is happiest who wisely turns them to the best account."

- Euripides, 480-406 BC

"There is only on way to happiness, and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond the power of our will."

Epictetus, 55-135 AD

"Remember, happiness doesn't depend on who you are or what you have;
it depends soley on what you think."

Dale Carnegie, 1888-1955 AD

I've seen some books on happiness. One I read not long ago is Happy For No Reason by Marci Shimoff. It is 320 pages! I'm here to tell you that being happy is not that hard.

Want to be happy? Think happy thoughts. It's that easy. Want to be pissed off? Think pissed off thoughts. It's that easy. There's only one rule: you must choose consciously and probably for a while until you can get it down so well you can do it unconsciously.

I can tell you things I do to help with having happy thoughts. I'll give you just a few: Don't read the newspaper as there are so few happy thoughts in there. I am conditioning myself to respond rather than react to events or something said. This gives me a few milliseconds to think and choose what I will do or not do. When people tell me about something bad that happened they heard on the news or that someone told them or an accident they saw, etc., I don't encourage them by reacting, but I say, "oh, okay," or something like that as if it is not important. I think of people I love and smile or I will think of something fun and smile. And, last, I smile a lot.

It's totally up to you. You get to choose or have it go via auto pilot. It doesn't matter how big a situation is or how small, you get to choose what you will think about it and how you will respond or react.

Take a large one like getting fired. I've been fired at least twice that my memory recalls. The most recent was in 1997. I was fired from a sales manager job that I held for 10 years. Guess what? It was one of the happiest days of my entire life!! That led me to other opportunities that I never would have come across. It was a powerful and very positive change for me. I was thrilled because there was six months of very uncomfortable tension between me and my boss leading up to the firing. Yet, I was committed to not quitting though that would have been very easy for me. I thank him in my mind all the time for firing me. I am forever grateful for that decision and his courage to do it.

If you're in sales and you're working a deal and the deal goes south, thank the prospect for the opportunity. Practice is good, but missing this sale could very well lead you to something so much greater. W Clement Stone wrote a book titled, The Success System That Never Fails, and in that book he says to get excited when someone says "no." It's a time when many a salesperson would be unhappy, but W Clement Stone says to get excited!

You're in charge and you get to choose what you want to think about anything. Choosing happy thoughts will not only feel better, but attract more things to be happy about! That's a good thing.

Come On Get Happy, Come On Get Happy . . .

Spread Some Joy Today--No Seriousness Today. Childlike Is Good. . .

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Daily Inspiration 11-1-09

"Our greatest weakness lies in giving up.
The most certain way to succeed is always to try one more time."

- Thomas Edison


I have 'failed' many times, and in looking back and being honest with myself, each of those failures was really a success in 'failure' clothing. Each was a decision: I quit. Oh, I might not have said so openly, and I may not have ever admitted it until now, but the stark reality is that I made a conscious decision that I didn't want to do it anymore and quit.

One of the things people do when they want to stop doing something, is they make up reasons and they create circumstances to back up their reasoning so they can feel like they look good--to be covered--to justify. They may say things like 'the economy,' or 'lack of business,' or 'health issues and concerns,' etc. These are things that the general populace accept as valid.

All the reasons and circumstances you can make up doesn't really matter, it's all smoke and mirrors. What really happened when you get down to the nitty gritty, is a decision to change course. I think that if you're honest with yourself, you would be forced to agree that this is the case.

Now, accepting that premise holds awesome power! With this acceptance, it is possible to move forward with a greater amount of confidence than ever before because you are now admitting that you have so much more control of your life than you have ever previously acknowledged. That is power! It is truth. You do have power and always have had it. You are constantly deciding how it will be used. It's just that previously you've covered up your decisions with circumstances and reasoning to make it sound better to you and others.

When you have expanded like this in accepting that you have the power and making better use of it, you will never go back. It's kind of like graduating from Junior High School, then going on to high school. Can you imagine ever going back after you've been to high school. Then college. Can you imagine going back to high school after you have made it to college? No way. You've outgrown it, moved beyond it, you are past it and what was before no longer holds any interest. Mental awareness is the same way. Once you have grown and expanded, you are now there and going backward makes no sense.

So, congratulations! You have expanded! You have the power! You are powerful! You control much more than you ever thought possible!

Ain't it cool!

I Got The Power. . . I Got The Power. . . Yeah!

Spread Some Joy Today--Listen To Other People's Reasons & Justifications. Hear What You Used To Sound Like. Isn't that interesting. . . ?