Friday, September 30, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-30-11

"Strangely enough, they have a mind to till the soil,
and the love of possessions is a disease in them."

-- Sitting Bull

"In our rich consumers' civilization we spin cocoons
around ourselves and get possessed by our possessions."

-- Max Lerner

I used to laugh at my mother for saving everything and never throwing anything away. She grew up in the depression in the 1930s and translated that lack into thinking possessions was part of her value. I used to laugh because of the things she saved from when I was a child. It wasn't memorabilia, although she had plenty of that, but an end table, or a very, very outdated picture that used to hang over our couch in the 1950s.

I inherited more of that than I care to have and lately, I've been seriously working on unloading. The sheer volume of things that I own is huge. I've got sales records from when I was a new salesman in 1973. Can't imagine the value of keeping those anymore. Then, I have drawers full of stuff that hasn't even seen daylight in so many years.

I remember watching one of those shows on TV where the Australian guy was convincing people to let go of things. He might say, 'if you haven't touched it in over a year, it probably needs to go.' Heck, I've got lots of things that I haven't touched in ten years! So, why do I have them? You know, I've forgotten. It seemed important at the time as if someone might want to see that, or I might want to show it, or use it to justify something, boost an ego--who knows?

I've got cables in drawers all over the place. RCA cables for connecting stereos, printer cables that are from the turn of the century, power cables, transformers, and even some cables that I haven't got a clue about, but felt they should be saved for some reason. It's kind of crazy.

There are some things that have sentimental value in earnest. The rest of it needs to go away. So, yesterday, I began the process of unloading my life of excess baggage. I mean, how important could it possibly be if I haven't even touched it or looked at it in over ten years? Or even one year? It seems that quote from yesterday's Daily Inspiration about the last suit you wear doesn't need pockets, struck a chord.

I'm practicing the art of letting go and in the process, I am feeling so much lighter and yet I've only just begun. Onward to a more reasonable number of things. . .

Let's See. . . If A Huge Fire Were Coming Over The Hill And I Had Exactly 15 Minutes And One Pickup Truck, What Would I Save?

Spread Some Joy Today--Be yourself. You are perfect the way you are! Let it be.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-29-11

Our 2nd Anniversary
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"Coincidence is God's way of remaining anonymous."

-- Albert Einstein

I love this quote by Albert Einstein because it speaks of faith without speaking of faith. In all that I have read of his writings and quotes, he very much believed in God or a creator, the Universal Intelligence, if you will. His only real departure was in the dogma where religions try to own territory.

Think about the quote and change the word coincidence to chance. It is saying the same thing. In others words there is no such thing as coincidence. It is only our way of explaining what we cannot seem to explain. Yet, he intimates all is God's handiwork, yet it is our own ego's that try to explain otherwise.

Here's another quote that goes nicely on this subject and right up next to Albert's quote: Carter Lindberg says, "Faith enables persons to be persons because it lets God be God." I love that line. In other words, if we just let go and not try to be God or predict God or control God; if we play our part, trust is a natural result and faith is enabled.

Faith And Coincidence Have A Lot In Common!

Spread Some Joy Today--Send a couple thank you cards to people today. Even if no one did anything special, just thank them for being them! It'll make two days!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-28-11

"Helplessness or hopelessness are like being a pinball in a pinball machine, being bounced from one circumstance to another, being flipped about as if everyone else has control of their lives while they seem to have none."

-- Terry Minion

 "Self-worth comes from one thing:
thinking you are worthy."

-- Wayne Dyer 

Sometimes I cannot seem to find a quote that helps me express a thought, so I make up my own. It's sort of fun!

This idea of being like a pinball in a pinball machine is something that helped me to understand what I was feeling like when I was acting powerless or hopeless from time to time by allowing me to see myself as the pinball in a grand view of how I was acting out those feelings. Depression is an easy place to get to via the freeway of powerlessness. I've been to all these destinations, some many times over the years, and I've found a way to never be the pinball again, or feel those terrible feelings.

When I thought of myself as the pinball and all of the trials and tribulations I might be going through as the bumpers and flippers of life, I really got the clear picture of how ridiculous it was to put myself in that position. I realized that I had choices that I could make and was often making choices that didn't serve me.

You know, in all of my study, I have found that it is the simplest things that are the most real and offer the most hope to change. One of them is this awesome quote by one of my early mentors, Wayne Dyer. He says, 'Self-worth comes from one thing: thinking that you are worthy.' That is so well said and so absolutely true. Feeling unworthy is rather easily turned around by DECIDING to feel worthy. It is simply, and effortlessly as decision of choice.

Another simple, effortless way is from another mentor, Anthony Robbins. He says that to make an immediate change, change your state. As he expanded, he says that to feel a certain way has certain physical characteristics, and when you change the physical characteristics, you change the feeling. (It's fascinating how the mind and body work together this way). So, you get up and move dramatically. Go run, go walk, climb Mt Everest, swim the channel, or at least one lap in the pool--anything, just move with enthusiasm!

Another simple, effortless way is another from Wayne Dyer: "It is impossible for you to be angry [or helpless, hopeless, depressed] and laugh at the same time. [They] are mutually exclusive and you have the power to choose either." This is what I love about getting around my business partner in person--he makes me laugh every time and we laugh together much. That is special and I recommend finding people like that and being around them as often as you need to. In addition to this, funny movies are great too, along with Comedy Central, funny YouTube or other channel videos, and more. Last night I watched a favorite, Down Periscope, and laughed all over again.

One more simple, effortless way is again from Wayne: "The last suit that you wear, you don't need any pockets." Great insight into what is important in life. IT'S LIFE! Everything else is trivial in comparison. When you're in the casket, does it matter to you how much money you had or how famous you were or how many problems you had? It just doesn't matter. What matters is feeling alive and living your life and having a ball doing it and having control, and the way to have control is by these simple, effortless things that makes you the pinball machine instead of the ball.

"You Cannot Always Control What Goes On Outside. But You Can Always Control What Goes On Inside."
-- Wayne Dyer

Spread Some Joy Today--If you are always happy and upbeat, you don't need today's inspiration. So, pass it along to someone who might benefit! There is joy in finding a way out of the maze.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-27-11

"If you change the way you look at things,
the things you look at change."

-- Wayne Dyer 

I love this quote because I have seen it play out exactly this way in my life so many times. Here's an example or two:

I have a fetish about women. I love to look at them. Now, it's not what you think. It isn't really a sexual thing, but an appreciative thing.

When I was young, I looked for the beauty and avoided the non-beauties. I had the Playboy magazine image of the perfect woman, I suppose, growing up in the sixties and all.

Then, just a few years ago, I decided one day to find something beautiful in every woman I would see. At first, some were a challenge, but I had so much fun with it, that it got easy very quickly. As I would see something beautiful about them--their hair, their eyes, the glow of their skin, the way they walked or talked or whatever--I would praise it internally and sort of tell them mentally how I appreciated that aspect in them.

Soon, I began complimenting many aloud, whether someone I knew or a total stranger. It's amazing to see their face light up when that happens, but the interesting thing that happened to me is that I have found all women to be beautiful. There are no more non-beauties.

I do this all the time now, and have a wonderful time of it.

Then, there's the house I live in. It's a plain old 3/2 single story 1100 sq ft tract house built in 1965 that I bought from one of my salesmen in 1983 when I was 34 years old. At that age, I had moved 43 times in my life and was so tired of moving, that I just didn't want to deal with it. I liked this house having been there before, so when I found they were selling it, I jumped on it.

The neighborhood was not ideal. In fact two blocks away or so, there were gunshots very regularly when I first moved in and up to the first couple of years. The police finally got that under control, but they neighborhood was not the upper crust, with some homes in poor condition, etc.

I used to sit outside in a courtyard in the front on a swing that was left by the previous owner, and there I began to see a different neighborhood. And now, it has changed so much in my mind. I love it and feel pretty comfortable. It is quiet generally and you might think otherwise since there have always been a lot of kids around. Having lived here this long, I almost have squatter's rights now, and the ethnicity of the neighborhood has changed dramatically, yet I love it the same. Though I would love a bigger (especially more closets!), fancier, house, I have not brought myself to make a move and am just plain happy where I am.

This scenario of deciding to like something and then seeing that what I was previously seeing was no longer there has played out in business, my personal life and in such a variety of ways. It really is true that you see what you choose to see, and that we are about as happy as we decide we are. 

". . . Turn Your Heartache Right Into Joy. . .Love The One You're With" -- Stephen Stills

Spread Some Joy Today--Turn your heartache or pain in the you know what into joy today by finding that thing and looking at what bothers you differently until it no longer bothers you. It is a sure path to peace and joy.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-26-11

"Old Beliefs
Do Not Lead You
To New Cheese."

-- Haw, c/o Spencer Johnson, M.D.

"He knew when you change what you believe, you change what you do." -- Haw

It's amazing how we hang on to certain things as so comfortable, even when they haven't been serving us for such a long time, we yet believe that it will get better. Of course, it doesn't and we are confused and somehow paralyzed.

If only we would change our beliefs, we could change and things would be different. But it's hard to change. Yet, no matter what, old beliefs do not lead you to new cheese.

Old beliefs are okay. Staying where we are is okay. I don't have the slightest problem with people who are happy where they are. It is those who are not happy with where they are and claiming to want something more or different and yet cling to the old beliefs and therefore are immovable are more of a challenge.

That used to make me crazy. I didn't understand it. I tried to help, make suggestions, offer advice, suggest reading material and none of it was used. It didn't make sense.

Now, it is okay. One thing that I've learned through much trial and error in my life is that swimming upstream requires so much effort and provides so little results compared to floating downstream. I used to swim upstream with people a lot. Now, I let go very quickly--even mid-sentence sometimes--and float away in peace and harmony.

I've learned to be very selfish in that I care far more about what I think and feel than what others do. It's not that I don't care, but at the same time, I don't. Do you know what I mean? I now allow others to have what they want without any insistence that they satisfy me.

"He Had To Admit That The Biggest Inhibitor To Change Lies Within Yourself, And That Nothing Gets Better Until You Change." -- Haw

Spread Some Joy Today--Being willing to consider new thoughts can lead to a far more joyous life. Sometimes they might seem strange and even scary, but that is only because they are different. Be adventurous.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Daily Inspriation 9-25-11

"Gratitude bestows reverence,
allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies,
those transcendent moments of awe
that change forever how we experience the world."

-- John Milton

I'm sure that I could write a whole book about gratitude, praise and appreciation and my experiences and moves toward abundance in this arena, and I may just do that. One thing is for sure, and that is that I continually find more to praise and more to be in awe of and stand in appreciation of. My cup is running over and there seems to be no end to how much deeper and more rich that appreciation can become.

At this stage in my life, I find so many things to be in appreciation of and express gratitude for every single day without exception, yet there are days like today where it is so off the chart, that it amazes me all over again.

One of the great things about reading many books is that down the road somewhere, you see something, feel something that came through in one of those books and it flashes into your mind, yet it didn't strike you at the time of reading. In the case of gratitude and appreciation, there are many, but one stood out today as a powerful influence on me many years ago and I was reminded of it again today several times. That book is Power In Praise by Merlin R. Carothers.

It came to me because this book is responsible for putting me on to a far greater path to praise than I was on prior to reading it, and from this vantage point, I've come on to other authors that have taken me further.

I was out for a long walk with Charlie today and it was windy and about 70 degrees at about 10am and the sun was out and warm, but the air was cool. It was sheer perfection. I can hardly think of a better scenario for a walk. While I was walking, I was taking in ever single thing I saw in my field of vision and praising God for all of it with such a joy in my heart and on my face. I felt one with the world. It was incredible.

As this was going on, I thought about praise, gratitude and appreciation and how fulfilled I felt as I was experiencing this. If I had 500 million in the bank, it could not have felt better, and I realized that it is something that any of us can do and feel rich and fulfilled in doing so. There wasn't a care in the world, anywhere in the world today, and it extended throughout my entire day to even now late at night.

There is power in praise to change us all. It isn't in church, although it can be, it is right where we are, where ever we are, each moment, and in each moment we have the choice to choose to appreciate; to choose to praise; to choose in-joy-ment. What an awesome great power this is and what is far more awesome than this is that it is something every one of us have available to us, rich or poor, fortunate or burdened, young or old. It crosses all boundaries and is universal, and more than this, it is without a doubt the most powerful thing I think and do.

I Am In Awe That My Joy Is Constantly Expanding.

Spread Some Joy Today--Do a random act of kindness for a co-worker or friend today. Buy them a latte or something and show them a little love.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-24-11

"Everything that irritates us about others
can lead us to an understanding of ourselves."

-- Carl Jung

I'm sure we all have people we know that irritate us, and generally, I would imagine that avoiding them is our normal productive response. Maybe we also talk about them to a spouse or a friend to share the unpleasant experience.

After I saw this quote a few years ago, I began thinking about this and trying to see beyond the initial impression to see if there is more behind that demeanor. As I do this, I also ask myself, 'in what ways do I act in this way?' and 'do I demonstrate any of the things that irritate me about this person without being aware of it?'

If we see someone who is arrogant, there may be times where we are arrogant as well. See this person and observing them being arrogant can be helpful to see how that might feel to others if it were coming from me, and it can also instruct in a different way by seeing what I don't want, so that I can more clearly focus on what I do want.

Sometimes people act a certain way as a defense mechanism or a learned response and are not really aware they do it.

Some people that irritate us are easy to avoid, and others may be in and out of our lives regularly because they are associated with our business or are vendor reps, or even relatives and so we really cannot avoid them entirely, though we may choose our opportunities with more care.

It can be beneficial to bring it to their attention how you are responding or reacting to their behavior. I think that is a great way to say that because it is ultimately us feeling our own feelings and our own reaction rather than something someone is doing to us.

I remember one time when I was a very young sales manager at a Chevy dealership. The factory rep would come in about once every two to four weeks. This one rep was a young guy and he was rude, arrogant and generally unpleasant. I hated the day that he came to the store. Well, one day, as he was standing in the doorway to my office, I just told him that I didn't like him and why. I told him he was rude, took no consideration of my valuable time, and was unpleasant to be around. I didn't care how he would react to that because I was tired of it.

Well, it took his breath away. He was shocked that anyone would talk to him so straight forwardly and he immediately (I mean that second) changed. He apologized, and from then on was a pleasant person and easy to enjoy his company. We even became friends and I was invited to his home even. Isn't that interesting how that worked out by my bold communication?

I've also had a couple of people speak to me in a similar way and it was equally helpful to me and the relationship. I started paying more attention to my own communication with others.

What Irritates Us About Others Can Be Very Instructive.

Spread Some Joy Today--Joy doesn't always come from a pleasant experience, and yet it is always a pleasant experience. Interesting, don't you think?

Friday, September 23, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-23-11

"I don't make mistakes.
I make decisions."

-- Terry Minion

This thought came through me today that I don't make mistakes--I make decisions. I want to emphasize our creative power and that we are creators who are constantly creating and we are doing that through our thinking and through the choices that we make, and those thoughts and choices all have some sort of result. And, that's it.

Calling it a mistake or a success or anything else is strictly a judgement. Line 100 people up and let them call it what they will, but it is just 100 opinions.

The thing that is usually missing is the acceptance of the creation. It's not about blame because that is another judgement, but is more along the lines of accepting responsibility for our own thoughts and actions--that we are actually creating our results, circumstances and events most of the time.

There is something very empowering about that acceptance because it demonstrates that we have the power of change within us at all times, which gives us a feeling of being in control instead of out of control. It's a feeling of being powerful instead of feeling powerless. It develops into a feeling of confidence rather than that of fear.

There Is No Such Thing As A Mistake, Only A Result.

Spread Some Joy Today--Choose love, hope, and joy. That's as good as it gets.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-22-11

"It is only rules that make a thing right or wrong,
and any judgement is in the authority of the rule maker."

-- Terry Minion

This thought came to me today on a drive, and I've been thinking about how it applies in several areas of our lives.

Things are not inherently right or wrong. Whether it is a stop sign, a contract, a mission statement, or the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, it is the rules that are made that makes a thing right or wrong and the rule maker who makes judgement. These come in terms of laws, edicts, commandments and statements of facts.

So, it's the middle of the night and you come to a four-way stop sign, and you can see for miles in all directions and there is zero traffic. Do you stop, or slow down and cruise through? Is it wrong to drive through and right not to? Or is it right to stop and wrong not to? What makes it right or wrong? It's only the rules, and the sign is just a physical representation of the rules.

Does that make rules wrong? No, but I think it is important to just conceptualize and accept that it is the rules that make a thing right or wrong, but not the thing itself, and that whomever is making the rules is the judge, or their assignee.

In one of my training classes, I talk about laws and the many ways to view them. I say that the speed limit on the freeway out there is 65 mile per hour, but the majority of the traffic is probably going faster than this limit. The rule maker states that if this speed limit is exceeded, there is a judgement of wrongness and a tentative fine as punishment. However, I say, there are not enough cops to stop all the people exceeding the speed limit, so another way of looking at this is that there is the letter of the law and the spirit of the law. One is written or spoken, the other is not, yet they both apply. The letter of the law is that the speed limit is being broken, the spirit of the law teaches us to flow with traffic. If traffic is flowing at 75 miles per hour, it is potentially wise to flow with them rather than strain against the flow.

Suppose you lost your job, or your income was substantially reduced and you could no longer pay your credit accounts in even the minimum amounts they demand. This scenario turns into a longer term situation and the creditors are very demanding. You want to pay the bill, and you want to demonstrate your earnestness in that desire but all you can offer is a pittance in comparison. If the creditor really was interested in allowing you to pay off the debt, they could do so by accepting those new terms, closing your account, stopping the interest and letting you make those payments and hopefully in the near future as things change, you can increase them until it is paid in full. It won't happen because of the rules, set by the rule maker--the creditor. They will only accept a minimum amount they determine and your amount is far below, so it is unacceptable.

The problem here is the rules. It is the tail wagging the dog. The consumer feels that not paying the debt is "wrong" but they cannot pay the amount the creditor wants. But it isn't really right or wrong except for the rules. This is but one example, but there are hundreds like them in all kinds of businesses, churches, households.

Consequently, there is infinite gray area in rules, and unlimited interpretation. So, even with rules, it cannot be so cut and dried as right and wrong, and that is mainly because regardless of the vastness of the gray area in rules, these are just rules, and the judgement is made by the rule maker. Ultimately, we make our own decisions by accepting others rules as our own, or making our own.

Of Course, The Advantage Of Making Your Own Rules, Is That The Judgement Call Is Yours Since You Are Thereby The Rule Maker.

Spread Some Joy Today--Make some of your own rules today. How about making a rule to have joy in your life every day!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-21-11

"If you envy successful people, you create a negative
force field of attraction that repels you from ever doing
the things that you need to do to be successful. If you
admire successful people, you create a positive force field
of attraction that draws you toward becoming more
and more like the kinds of people that you want to be."

-- Brian Tracy

This quote is all about judgement choices. I became aware of this just recently, but I am now practicing it to change my thinking, and I didn't know I was thinking negatively about others being successful, yet I was.

It's easy to go there if I have less, or I seem to work harder and not get the rewards that I think I deserve. It's easy to make judgements about the people you see, such as a young man driving an expensive luxury car, I might have thought he's selling drugs and that's how he affords that car and such. Regardless of whether my guess was correct or not, the problem for me was the thoughts and judgement calls.

So, I began to see someone driving a really fancy car, or high end luxury car, and then I would practice being thrilled for their success and how much they must be enjoying their reward, and how they must have had so much fun picking it out and writing the check!

This little change is smoothing out my thoughts about how I see wealth and how I see others. It is leading me to make less judgements, and give more praise, and experience more joy for others and myself. In addition, it is helping me to see the real abundance that is in this world.

Lining Up With More Loving Thoughts Always Works.

Spread Some Joy Today--Share your joy with others and their good fortune.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-20-11

"Love is the ability and willingness to allow those
that you care for to be what they choose for themselves
without any insistence that they satisfy you."

-- Wayne Dyer

I've seen a great many definitions of love, and none come close to this one by Wayne Dyer. Since I first saw it many years ago, I immediately adopted it as my own view, or at the very least my desired view, and I've now had many opportunities to see this at work and to experience how it feels to be in line with this philosophy and alternatively, to be out of alignment with it.

I expect that all of us have had people in our lives that we love that refuse to see what they are doing to themselves, and resist any efforts of ours to change their course. Often that ends in just going in different directions partly because it seems painful to continue to watch and experience that disharmony. It happens in all kinds of relationships--personal and business (as if there is truly a difference. . .).

I've even stepped away from this for a time, but I keep coming back because there is more depth in this quote, more golden nuggets to find, such as the first line. "Love is the ability. . ." That one is fairly easy in comparison with the next part, ". . .and willingness. . ." This is the hardest part of this whole concept: Being willing. Ability is a given, there's nothing to argue about there, but willingness, well, that's a much taller order.

Then, he goes on, ". . . to allow. . ." Two tough one's back to back! A willingness and allowing. In both cases, I have to let go of any control, and release myself purposefully. It is truly only in the releasing that unconditional love sprouts its wings. If people always did what pleased us, or what we want them to do, or what we think is good for them, or what we think is in their best interests, we would just be puppeteers for our own pleasure and whim.

Next, we are to allow them, ". . .to be what they choose for themselves. . .". Another tough one to accept the fact that others can and ought to choose for themselves. Of course, we've always known that we can choose, but allowing others to choose is risky and unpredictable. What if they choose something that I don't believe in? What if they choose something that I hate? What if they choose something without me? What if _________? Yet, on the loving side of this argument, it is the fact and recognition of the fact that each of us has the AUTHORITY to choose for themselves that is important and empowering and releasing and loving. Acknowledgement is a powerful thing.

And, the last part of this wonderful quote, ". . . without any insistence that they satisfy you." Well, that just goes against all we were brought up to know about love: that we come together in happiness, to be in happiness, to provide happiness and so on. Of course, I've come to know that happiness is impossible to give to another, it is only something they can give to themselves.

Still, we have this tendency to insist that others comply with our wishes, or at the very least to negotiate with us for an acceptable compromise. But, in this quote, we are encouraged to release all authority to the other and to allow. That is the unconditional part of unconditional love. Everything else is conditional because there is some condition or requirement or desire that the other act or be a certain way.

So, bringing it all full circle:

"Love is the ability


TO ALLOW those you care for

To be what THEY CHOOSE


without any insistence

that they satisfy you."

Thank You, Wayne, For The Loving Inspiration!

Spread Some Joy Today--Love others unconditionally. It is a joyous challenge.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-19-11

"Whatever I fight weakens me.
What I cooperate with stengthens me."

-- Essence of the Tao Te Ching, 68th verse
by Wayne Dyer

It seems like whatever we do, we have an agenda. Sometimes we might call them goals, or to-do's, wants or desires, and rules. Sometimes, they might even be must-do's, have-to-do's or even more urgent agendas.

Many times, maybe even most of the time, our agendas have a way of controlling our experience so that we experience less rather than more. I liken it to the tail wagging the dog. I see it in my own personal agendas and I see it in businesses all around me. I especially see it in businesses who are focused on competitiveness and fear of loss.

My dog (actually, my wife's dog, rescued from the dog pound at age 10, but I am the official trainer in charge of exercise), is a dinky little Cheeewawa (sorry, had to do it. . .) who is teaching me to let go of my own personal agendas and relax in cooperation.

Here's the deal. I love to walk and if I were going out on my own, I would typically walk around 5 miles in about an hour and a half. I'm out for the exercise, the cardio, the calorie burning, the joy of it, the outdoors, the sun and shade and well. . . there are quite a number of agendas or intentions.

So, then we get this dog--Charlie, by the way, and he loves to go and do pretty much anytime, anywhere with jumping and enthusiasm that I only dream of. I take him along. If I walk a mile, he must walk five with those little legs, but he eagerly persists in leading me even though I know the way and he doesn't. But, he obviously doesn't care about my agendas. He has his own: find smells, sniff them, pee on them, scratch with is rear legs like he's covering something up, then on to the next with ears wide open anticipating other furry friends and foes alike.

At the end of the walk, still leading. . .
Of course, I want the exercise which means to keep moving, but he's having none of it. At first, I would gently yank on the leash and say, 'come on,' or something, or I would become impatient when he would find a particularly good smell, and say, 'that's enough, come on,' or such. But, as much as I tried, he was not learning, and for a while, neither was I.

Then, one day I just decided to let go of my own agenda and cooperate fully. If he paused to sniff for five minutes, I stood there patiently enjoying it with him in spirit. Well, to be fair, I practiced doing that, and got better as I went. Patience requires practice for the goal-oriented.

We got about 1 mile in an hour and I was getting no cardio benefit, but I was getting a far greater list of benefits, such as patience, enjoyment, love, relaxation, and more. Sometimes we would get more exercise, even going up to three miles together, although he would sometimes demonstrate his need for rest by just stopping and laying down in the shade somewhere, so I went with that too. He loves to rub his face and back in the grass and I just lay down there with him and watch.

Resting in the grass
My walks have taken on a whole new joy. I find them relaxing and most enjoyable. I don't care how far we go anymore, or how long it takes. I have my thoughts, my little notebook, and I'm good. See--you can teach an old dog new tricks!

Oh, How We Let Our Own Agendas Get In The Way Of Enjoying Our Short Time On This Planet.

Spread Some Joy Today--Start practicing letting go of your need to control the outcome. You might find a great deal of joy in that space.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-18-11

"We make the world we live in
and shape our own environment."

-- Orison Swett Marden

More than anything else, I think that vacation is a state of mind. There may be a physical change in geography, but that is not what inspires us or relaxes us. It is the idea of laying down our work for a time and letting go that I think is most important and next, it is the feeling of feeling different.

One day a couple months ago out on a walk, the smell of the air, the gentle breeze, the trees, breathing deeply, or perhaps all reminded me of the feeling of being on vacation. As I thought about that, I wondered why not go with that feeling and expand on it and feel it often so as to add more joy to my life. No matter how much joy we have, we can always handle more--just like love, right?

So, I started just relaxing in the experience of being out in the air on my walks and praising everything I saw and practiced feeling as if I hadn't a care in the world, for in reality, at this moment, I don't. It's only when I think about my cares or am dealing with my cares that I experience cares. . . unless I choose otherwise.

I found that this was very helpful and FUN! So, rather than my typical Levi's and shirt, I started wearing shorts and a tropical shirt, or t-shirt, and felt even more on vacation. If I had a meeting with any of our team, I would dress that way and if I needed to go to a client, I would dress more like casual business.

Another thing that is fun is to pull out some vacation photos and sprinkle them around my office so that I see them whenever I look around the room. On top of my desk, I have a photo of me in Maui, Hawaii on the drive to Hanna standing by several banana plants with a bunch of green bananas, and I'm dressed in shorts, t-shirt and flip-flops. As I look at it, I am there again; albeit, somewhat younger externally (I'm still that age inside).

It's the little things we do that can make a big difference in our momentary joys, isn't it? Little things like deciding to feel better, to feel like I'm not concerned about anything, to feel that I am enjoying myself, to feel relaxed, to feel joy, are easy enough to do if we choose to, and by choosing to, we change our perception of our current reality.

What A Great Benefit Thinking Can Be!

Spread Some Joy Today--Think your way into your own personal paradise. You don't have to tell anyone, but surely they will notice that certain smile on your face. . .

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-17-11

"Be a collector of good ideas,
but don't trust your memory."

-- Jim Rohn

A few days ago, I mentioned that I've started using small notebooks again. I've used them off and on for most of my life, but the most part was off. I somehow thought I would remember the important ones, but that is a fantasy.

I've found that it is hard enough remembering a thought until the next block while driving. Seems easy, but the mind is a non-stop machine. It just keeps on going, like the Duracell bunny. It doesn't wait for anything or anyone, but cranks out multi-layered thoughts changing direction at a nanoseconds notice. I actually like that about the brain and the mind, but it is often that a good thought slips away in the shuffle. Hence, the notebooks. Pause, write, go back to thinking. Done.

I'm remembering to take the notebook on my walks because that's a place where I seem to get a number of ideas or thoughts worth writing about. It's fun too. It's interesting the things that get written down. These are some thoughts I wrote down today: Variable Tolerance Ratio, Dom Auto Mfg vs. Foreign 60s-70s-80s, Joy Meter, Comparing Ourselves To Others Is Not Helpful. Sort of a wide range of topics there, but I know from that little writing a much larger story to tell.

It's interesting that this seems like such a little thing, but it is bringing me joy from the capturing of some good ideas, and this time, I think I'll follow through for a long time.

You Never Know When A Good Idea Will Try To Get Your Attention. Carry A Notebook, Or Recorder.

Spread Some Joy Today--Pretend for just a while today that you've won a big lottery and you're instantly wealthy. You won't get the money for 30 days, but you know it is coming. All of a sudden, your cares are released. How does that feel? Just go with that a while and feel it for as long as you like. I'll bet you feel great today!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-16-11

"Chaos is the score upon which reality is written."

-- Henry Miller

"Fiction reveals truth that reality obscures."

-- Ralph Waldo Emerson

A thought came through me the other day when I was thinking about the slant that is presented on the nightly or daily news, and in the newspapers, and other publications. That thought was this: Success is a given. It's failure that stands out.

If we are to believe the reality that is presented by the media, then my statement is an absolute truth. Though, we claim to strive toward success, desire it, supposedly appreciate it, and claim to admire it, in reality it means nothing to many people compared to what is going wrong, has been wrong, will be wrong, must be fixed and having the blame fully assigned with due punishment.

Yes. According to the media, success is a given; it's boring, useless, wimpy, and not worth reporting for fear of turning off the masses. It's not news. It's a given. It's fear that sells. It is news, and I am told that it is reality. It's failure that stands out.

I Look At Life With A Different Perspective: Joy!

Spread Some Joy Today--Celebrate every ounce of joy! Claim it as your Gold Standard. It costs nothing and is worth far more than gold.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-15-11

"The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day
regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day."

-- Charles Swindoll

It is remarkable and also ultimately powerful that we have that choice every day, and even every hour, minute and moment. It is so easy to slip back into thinking that things happen to us and that many of those things might seem to come out of the blue, uninvited and unwanted, but I have found that the more I accept my own responsibility for what goes on in my life, the more interested I am in making more effective choices in attitude and thought.

It is also remarkable that if we are feeling south of neutral and take a moment to realize that we are letting our feeling have the control, it can turn on a dime toward joy in just moments in time. It only requires a better thought, a more comforting thought, and another and another, and then pretty soon, your back on track in confidence again. Isn't that a great feeling to have that power and control? I think it is flat out exciting!

It is also remarkable the we have such a power of influence over others by exercising certain choice in attitude and thought. Ever been on the commiseration bus? It's a bus going nowhere in particular, isn't it? Just a simple change in thought will remove us from that bus and instantly place us in the positive palace coach, where people are excited about destinations, adventures, ideas, and sharing encouragement.

It's More Up To Me Than I Previously Thought, And I Am Enjoying Very Much This New, Exciting Life.

Spread Some Joy Today--Choose your attitude today. Start with loving yourself, appreciating yourself, and being thankful for all that you have and are.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-14-11

"You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only
connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that
the dots will somehow connect in your future."

"I didn't see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple
was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The
heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of
being a beginner again, less sure about everything.
It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods in my life."

"You've got to find what you love. And that is as true for your
work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part
of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do
what you believe is great work. And the only way to do
great work is to love what you do.
If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle."

-- Steve Jobs

I watched an older video today that could have been made yesterday and would have been just as fresh. And, the interesting thing to me was how familiar it was. I don't recall ever watching it before, but it fascinated me by its familiarity to some events in my life.

I began in the car business fresh out of the Air Force as a car salesman in 1972. I realized that management was my destiny, so in January of 1975, I became a sales manager. I studied and worked at that position and through several changes in dealers ended up as a General Sales Manager at a dealership where I live. Then, after over 25 years in the business and over 5 years at this store, I got fired. It was the day that changed my life, and within a few seconds I was awash with a joy that I rarely experienced. It was as if I was let out of prison.

As I look back on all the positions I've had, I can see the dots connecting.

Prior to that 1997 firing, I had quit many jobs in pursuit of something more fitting, but had only gotten fired once before when I was a teenager. As I look back, it too was a turning point. Leaving the position in 1997 was my opportunity out of the car business and I made a point of it. That led to a long position outside of the auto business, but related to it in truck bodies, then into my own business in 2008. Each of these were perfect and the timing was perfect too. Each one was several steps up to me and gave me opportunities to try different things, test theories, and experience differences.

From 1997 on I now look at each change in the most positive light because I have some distance to look back and in connecting the dots see how they all work together.

What is much more important to me personally is finding things I loved to do. At each venue, I have found my niche so to speak and a way to excel in one or more ways. I would focus on that because it was what I loved doing. At each of these places and experiences though, I found frustration in forced changes that made no sense to me, and more, that sort of made it less loving. Yet, each one, I loved more, until now, I am doing what I love most and that is being in business for myself. It is a daily thrill for me now and there isn't anything that gets me the slightest bit down in comparison.

My mantra to younger people is to find what you love and love what you do and find ways to excel, and that opportunity exists when you love what you do. It's enthusiasm, fire, drive, ambition, satisfaction. The other thing I try to share with those interested is that there are other ways. You don't have to settle. There are opportunities all around us. You don't have to work at a job you don't like. You can create your own job, life, career.

Today's piece is a bit longer because I got very excited about seeing the video and connecting my own dots again. I hope in connecting yours, you see the perfection in it as well. Here is the link to the video if you want to watch it yourself.

Steve Jobs' 2005 Stanford Commencement Address

"So, Keep Looking Until You Find it. Don't Settle."
--Steve Jobs

Spread Some Joy Today--If you're loving where you are and what you do, great. Far out. Sweet. Now, help others to do the same. If you're not loving where you are and what you do, let others help you.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-13-11

"Be master of your petty annoyances and
conserve your energies for the big, worthwhile things.
It isn't the mountain ahead that wears you out,
it's the grain of sand in your shoe."

-- Robert Service

I can't say about you, but sometimes my perspective runs amuck. I've been known to make mountains out of mole hills and worry about the silliest things. I've even said the wrong things at the wrong time, and made a fool of myself in the process.

There's just a couple of questions that I should endeavor to remember as often as I can. They are these:

1. If I only had six months to live, would any of this be important or troublesome?

2. If the person I'm talking to only had six months to live, would this change my attitude, demeanor or words right now?

It's not about letting go of what is important in our lives, or what we want or how we want it, but about being reasonable. Having six months to live makes life more reasonable in so many ways.

In My Gratitude, Let Me Count The Ways. . .

Spread Some Joy Today--Said anything foolish lately? Hmmm. Could be a sign. . .

Monday, September 12, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-12-11

"I never came upon any of my discoveries
through the process of rational thinking."

-- Albert Einstein

I think this statement by Albert Einstein, one of the world's smartest people, is fascinating and can have great application in any of our lives. When these things strike me as they sometimes do, I often look them up in the dictionary and/or thesaurus. Not because I need to know what it means, but sometimes there is insight there that I hadn't thought of. So here is the and rendition:

1. agreeable to reason; reasonable; sensible: a rational plan for economic development.
2. having or exercising reason, sound judgment, or good sense: a calm and rational negotiator.
3. being in or characterized by full possession of one's reason; sane; lucid: The patient appeared perfectly rational.
4. endowed with the faculty of reason: rational beings.
5. of, pertaining to, or constituting reasoning powers: the rational faculty.


Main Entry: rational
Part of Speech: adjective
Definition: realistic; of sound mind
Synonyms: all there, analytical, balanced, calm, cerebral, circumspect, cognitive, collected, cool*, deductive, deliberate, discerning, discriminating, enlightened, far-sighted, impartial, intellectual, intelligent, judicious, knowing, levelheaded, logical, lucid, normal, objective, perspicacious, philosophic, prudent, ratiocinative, reasonable, reasoning, reflective, sagacious, sane, sensible, sober, sound, stable, synthetic, thinking, thoughtful, together, well-advised, wise
Antonyms: irrational, ridiculous, unrealistic, unreasonable, unsound

There we go. I've so often heard the need to be sensible, to exercise sound judgment, good sense, and to be rational, reasonable, and realistic. Often, I am those things; albeit, not all at the same time generally.

Now the Thesaurus opens up the virtues of reason to a whole slew of words that are meant to keep up grounded and sane, along with being of sound mind. Heck, who doesn't want to be of sound mind? Seems rational and reasonable to me.

However, I have been know to be unstable, irrational, even ridiculous. I've certainly been unreasonable often enough and of course, I am quite an expert at being unrealistic. It's the sales training in me I suppose. Who wants a salesperson who is realistic and balanced and calm? Certainly not I. Equally, as a sales manager, I must lead the unbalanced and ridiculous to greater success, which as Albert Einstein knows full well, is the only way to get there in style.

Here's To Irrationality! With Just A Touch Of The Ridiculous. Oooo! Such A Wonderful Combination!

Spread Some Joy Today--Let the air out of your soundness of mind for little bits of fun. Full time rationality is so boring.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-11-11

"Let us not look back in anger or forward in fear,
but around us in awareness."

-- James Thurber

"Between stimulus and response,
there is a space.

In that space lies our freedom and power
to choose our response.

In our response
lies our growth and freedom."

-- Victor Frankl

"The significant problems we face cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them." -- Albert Einstein

Spread Some Joy Today--Love someone.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-10-11

"You cannot teach people anything.
You can only help them discover it within themselves."

-- Galileo

This might be your experience as well, but when I really want to teach something to someone because I know how much it will benefit them, I might as well be talking to a wall. It doesn't get in. But, have them have even a small desire to learn it and flows in and fills right up.

This proves what Galileo said, 'You cannot teach people anything. You can only help them discover it within themselves.'

I think that even as we teach a receptive student, it seems to me that they are not so much learning anything new, but remembering something they already had there, but wasn't allowing in because they weren't ready.

That reminds me of a number of students I have had where they could repeat what was said and taught, but when you asked a question that required them to think it through, they had no understanding, only memorization.

So what to do? First, I think learning is something that cannot be forced, but only encouraged. Second, don't worry about the ones who aren't ready. Third, keep going. Fourth, continue to expand your own learning and understanding to be able to state the same thing in many different ways.

There's been quite a number of times where I've heard the same thing many different times and then it was stated in a certain way that was different, and all of a sudden, it is as if I learned it for the first time. It's the Eureka! moment.

Many teachers are easily distracted and frustrated by reluctant students, but they need not be. It's not up to them, except to be the best they can be. Everything else is up to the student.

When The Student Is Ready, Teaching May Begin.

Spread Some Joy Today--A belief is a thought you keep thinking. To change a belief, just gradually change the thoughts. Pretty easy.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-9-11

"What worries you, masters you."

-- Haddon W Robinson

Powerful phrases don't get much shorter or more profound than, what worries you, masters you. When it is us that is worried about something, we may find it hard to believe this is true, let alone notice what is going on, but when you stand back and watch others, it is so obvious that you wonder how they couldn't know what they are doing to themselves.

I see it in business all the time. I see it in personal lives and choices too. One of my first bosses was scared to death he would get cancer, and he died of cancer, and I wasn't surprised at all. I talked to him briefly a few weeks before he died and he wasn't surprised either. If fact, he was resigned to it.

From a less life threatening point of view, I see people who want change, yet are unwilling to change. I get that concept, but it can never work. Jim Rohn said, 'For things to change, you have to change. For things to get better, you have to get better.' In business, they want more business, but they don't want to do the things that will generate that business. That's sort of like saying, I want to go back to the way it was when I was happy and secure, rather than into the unknown future. The lack of change is mainly worry.

I love what Mark Twain said about worry. He said, 'I am an old man and have a great many troubles, but most of them never happened.' Ain't that the truth.

It is also obvious by the Twain quote that if we just let go of the majority of our worries, we won't miss them at all. Worry is just fantasy about a potential event and how that event or associated events leading to it will transpire. Generally, those fantasies are about what could go wrong, who might object, and dealing with all manner of fearful details--much of which would never happen.

As we worry about those fantasies, they rule our lives because all of our decisions are affected by the worry or fear. Often they become self-fulfilling prophecies. As we worry, we are playing a tug-of-war with an unknown and hard to defeat opponent. However, by the simple choice of just letting go of that rope, letting go of the worry, the power dissipates almost immediately. It only returns when you decide to pick up the rope again.

Isn't Calmness A Better Choice?

Spread Some Joy Today--Choose to be calm in the face of anxiety. There is much joy in that choice.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-8-11

"There are two parts to influence:
First, influence is powerful;
and second, influence is subtle.

You wouldn't let someone push you off course,
but you might let someone nudge you
off course and not even realize it."

-- Jim Rohn

I remember many years ago that there was this huge debate in the newspapers, on television about the potential negative effect of violence on TV and in the movies on young people. Some said yes, some no, some were neutral about it, and I thought back then that it seems impossible that it could not have an effect.

It affected me when I was a kid. I played war games and used stick guns to shoot people. We played cowboys and Indians and the cowboys always won. We watched war on television, whether it was world war I or II movies, news of wars, potential wars, and limited conflicts (newer name for war).

It doesn't take much. All you have to do is put someone near me for a while and they might have a unique little phrase or sound they make and pretty soon I'm doing it as well. Or, we might hear something on the radio and begin repeating it and sharing it around. After all, isn't this exactly what babies do growing up? They mimic those around them and by seeing them do a thing, then they follow suit and try to do that as well.

So the debate about things having an effect on us is pointless. The debate might better be served by debating how much of an effect and how long, or how much it might change our own views, beliefs, thinking, or results.

I think of some who watch a lot of TV and even as they go to sleep, forgetting to turn it off and it is on all night long talking to them while they sleep. It's the fear shows and the arguing shows and the news and the commercials and more. Does it have an effect? I ask, how could it not have an effect?

How about this. Put some headphones on with a recording playing someone saying to you, 'You are an idiot, you are an idiot. You are a worthless human being.' It plays over and over and over again. How long before you are an idiot? Not long unless you take charge and throw away the recording and change your thinking to positive, uplifting thoughts about yourself.

It's the same with fear. This is why I stopped reading the newspaper almost ten years ago. I stopped watching any news program about 5 years ago. I keep the fear-laden input to an absolute minimum. I haven't missed a thing worth mentioning. I have not lost contact with the world, and better than all this, I am a better person as a result. I read uplifting things, I listen to uplifting talks, and I am uplifted and improved.

Does it have an effect? Damn straight! How could it not?

Some Things Are Blatantly Obvious.

Spread Some Joy Today--Remember G.I.G.O. is Garbage In, Garbage Out. You can eat some pretty unhealthy and delicious meals, but your body will not benefit from the nutrional things you fail to put in. The more unhealthy the diet, the more need for counterintuative measures.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-7-11

"Time is a created thing.
To say, 'I don't have time,'
is like saying, 'I don't want to.'"

-- Lao-Tzu

When I saw this quote, it reminded me of my growth in courage and confidence. I am probably like many people who make up reasons that sound good to avoid doing something I don't want to do. Sometimes we search for a good period of time for just the right legitimate excuse so we can do what we want and save face at the same time.

What has happened in my personal growth, is the courage and confidence to say what I want and risk the response. I can't say I do it always, but I do practice it more and more. And, it feels great too.

Where did we get that just because someone asked us to do something that we should do it? Wherever it came from, it needs to go away. I want to be in charge of me. Some people might find that selfish. So be it.

I Have As Much Right To Choose As Any.

Spread Some Joy Today--People will get used to honesty if we give it to them regularly.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-6-11

"We are what we think.
All that we are arises with our thoughts.
With our thoughts, we make the world."

"In the sky, there is no distinction of east and west;
people create distinctions out of their own minds
and then believe them to be true."

-- Buddha

We just had a long holiday weekend. This one signifying the end of summer and now it is time to go back to school and prepare for Halloween and Christmas because they do take more time and thought in preparation for the event.

Holidays can be fun, and they can be another reason for the season. I don't get too excited about them anymore because, I suppose, that I don't wait to enjoy my days, hours, minutes, moments. I am choosing now to enjoy them as they are and I'm having the time of my life now almost every day.

I talk to people who say TGIF, or Thank God It's Friday. They look forward to Friday all week so they can go enjoy the weekend and a long weekend like this last one is joy upon joy, so they start planning on enjoying that weeks ahead. Or, they are planning and looking forward to the vacation, or some other event that brings them happiness and excitement. I used to do that as well, but in my case, when it got here, it was never quite as good as I hoped it to be. For over fifty years I looked forward to the escape of the weekend, vacation or other such event. No more.

Today is now Tuesday and I choose to have a ball, enjoy myself as much as I choose to, spread joy wherever I can and glow in the awesomeness of the things around me. I will choose to have a wonderful time working, doing things that help others and are a benefit to their business, and though sometimes the workload may seem full, I seem to find a way to enjoy it.

Today, I choose to be in awe of God and all that God has made for my enjoyment whether it is being out on a walk watching and feeling all that is around me, or whether I just look out my window at the blueness of the sky, and the wind tickling the leaves and branches of the trees.

Today, I choose to share my bountiful love with everyone today, whether I only think of them, or whether I meet them in person. Today, I also choose, and not necessarily in that order, to love myself by appreciating who I am and have become and am becoming and how everyone I have ever met has had some part in that which is me.

Today, I choose to live fully, enjoy pleasant and loving thoughts, bless those who choose to serve fear and pain, while moving away from their influence in a timely manner. Today, I choose to associate with uplifting people, uplifting news, in an uplifting world. Today, I choose my own world.

Today, I Choose.

Spread Some Joy Today--Choose today.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-5-11

"To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance."

-- Oscar Wilde

It's funny to me how long it takes to really get a thought. Real understanding is not the same as knowing.

When I was young, we used to see a few kids and call them conceited, or full of themselves. Another word was show-off. In my twenties, the idea was presented about loving ourselves, and of course, I agreed with the concept, but didn't really believe it, if you know what I mean. I always seemed to keep associating that concept with the word conceit. Later there were other things that seemed to get in the way, or at least to confuse the issue further, yet I think most of us may have accepted the idea that loving ourselves was a good thing, but just didn't quite know how to do that so that we felt it rather than just thought it.

So, I realized that conceit is not even close to love. Instead, it is thinking that one is better than everyone else. That certainly makes it an unloving act.

The other idea that was a road block was the phrase, self-centered. I am told that is a negative thing and that to be self-centered is to deny the Creator, yet I am now believing that is just bunk. It's that old does the Earth revolve around the Sun or does the Sun revolve around the Earth, or is the Earth the center of the Universe or not. Besides, it seems to me that being centered would be a good thing--and certainly having my self centered.

One last idea that was a road block is this idea of being selfless. That's one of those "should" words to many of us, but the idea is that we put ourselves last and others first and that this act is an act of love. I used to buy that, but I'm not buying it anymore. Worst case scenario is we need to value ourselves AND everyone else too.

Loving ourselves is likened more to acceptance and appreciation of ourselves. This also acknowledges a Creator as a necessary part. After all, we didn't design ourselves. I am learning to love myself, by treating myself as valuable, as special, as unique, as lovable. I am learning to love myself for who I am, who I've become and to accept responsibility for all of that. I feel that I have more capacity to love others as I love myself.

Lately, I've even begun a program of treating myself on a regular basis to things and experiences that I am really interested in. A bit of a reward I suppose, and well deserved, I might add.

Love Is Never Having To Say I'm Not Worthy.

Spread Some Joy Today--Write yourself a little love letter. Tell yourself what you like about you and how special you are. Now, let yourself read it, enjoy it and believe it.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-4-11

"The more intensely we feel about an idea or a goal,
the more assuredly the idea, burried deep in our subconscious,
will direct us along the path to its fulfillment."

-- Earl Nightingale

"Passion is energy. Feel the power that
comes from focusing on what excites you."

-- Oprah Winfrey

Yesterday while out on a walk, I was daydreaming, or fantasizing about something, and I was enjoying the trip immensely. Then the idea struck me that it is more important to feel it than to be it. In other words, it is more important to feel rich than to be rich. It is the feeling that we are after in reality anyway.

The best part about this is that we can choose to enjoy what ever we think we would like to be, do or have at any time and the more intensely we feel that way, the better.

It is all the other cares of life, people who mean well (are we sure of that?), and those other ne'er-do-well's that we must decide to ignore in our pursuit of our own joy.

I guess we can call that the choice of focus, and that would be accurate. But, the most important result of the focus is the feeling of it actually being true right now.

Feel It And See It In Your Mind's Eye.

Spread Some Joy Today--by acknowledging your own.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Daily Inspiration 9-3-11

Growth Week

"The growth and development of people
is the highest calling of leadership."

-- Harvey S Firestone

I love this quote and believe it to be true, not because a business great like Harvey Firestone said it, or even believed it and lived it, but because it has been my experience that it is true. I know in looking back at all of the various managers, business owners and such that were in leadership positions where I worked, it is the ones that helped me grow that have stood out. Also, taking into consideration the group of them through my life, those type of leaders are few.

Consequently, or perhaps a better word might be coincidentally, I practice the development of people as my leadership style, and I say coincidentally, because that is not so much a choice on my part to act in that way as a leader, but it is how I feel and act in what I do in me as a person. So, I live it, breathe it, and act in it, then it is also a natural thing to teach it.

I suppose an accurate and more effective way to say that is that I lead by example, and especially where personal development plays a part, and I believe it always plays a part.

What are some of the ways of helping the development and growth of people in an organization? Here are some thoughts:

•Leaders are readers. Lead by example by being a reader and a life-long learner. I don't need to know everything, but I want to continue learning and expanding my own knowledge and thereby share that passion with my team and others around me. I know how much of a difference it has made in my life and I know how much of a difference it will make it others as well.

•Micro-managing is an ego trip and it stifles growth. Learn how to delegate and trust and have more patience. This is a challenge for many and still is from time to time with me. It is easy to do a thing myself, and certainly easier than trying to teach someone else to do it or wait until they are up to speed, but I realize I can't do it all and if I keep doing it all, the company cannot grow. I need to lead the company, which means that I need to focus time on the outside looking in rather than doing all the work just because it is convenient, or may seem to be the way to have it done right or well. I practice letting go of the rope and it helps a great deal.

•Don't tell people how to do everything. Give them basic guidelines and let them use their creativity and skills to do it better than I might do it. We have graphic designers and the less instruction I give them, the better the product they produce. I love to see people do it better than me. It helps me grow and it helps them grow.

•Challenge people to solve problems. Let your team help your solve problems.

•Praise and encouragement is high on the list of things that motivate me, so I use them in the same way to help uplift team members.

This is certainly not a complete list, and I'm sure you can add to it. I hope some of these ideas are beneficial to your growth and that of your team.

A Healthy, Growing Company Requires Healthy, Growing People.

Spread Some Joy Today--Take a personal break, maybe once a week, and do something totally fun for yourself. Maybe even skip lunch and do that instead.