Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Acknowledge and Appreciate Yourself TODAY by Jack Canfield

Acknowledge and Appreciate Yourself TODAY

by Jack Canfield

With the year coming to a close, it's time to acknowledge and
appreciate yourself for everything you've accomplished today,
throughout the year, and in life. How many times have you
succeeded in the past month? Are you able to recall your successes
as well as your failures and missteps?

Many people under-appreciate the little things they accomplish
every day. And yet they can recall in detail all the times they
have failed or made mistakes. That's because the brain remembers
events more easily when they're accompanied by strong emotions.

You might recall graduation, losing 10 pounds, winning an award, or
landing a highly sought after position.

But do you include in your successes how you had a really great
talk with your spouse, how you spent quality time with your teen,
how you got all your list of things done for the day, how you
learned to change your own oil, or got your fussy child to take a

If you don't acknowledge your successes the same way you
acknowledge your mistakes, you're sure to have a memory full of

Toot your own horn and don't wait for anyone else to praise you!

If you only remember the mistakes and failures, you won't be as
ready to take risks that will lead to your successes. Build your
self-esteem by recalling ALL the ways you have succeeded and your
brain will be filled with images of you making your achievements
happen again and again.

The more you acknowledge your past successes, the more confident
you become in taking on and successfully accomplishing new ones.

Take time to write your achievements down.

To really convince yourself that you're a successful person who can
continue to achieve great things, I'd like to challenge you to list
100 or more of your life successes.

Start when you were very young and think of all your achievements
since then. Don't just pick the big things, write down all the
things you take for granted. Thinks like, learning to ride a bike,
singing solo at church, getting your first job, or leading a
fund-raising campaign.

You should also begin to create a Victory Log of your daily
successes and review it anytime you are faced with a new challenge.
By writing it down everyday, you're securing it in your long-term
memory, which enhances your self-esteem and builds your confidence.

Surround yourself with reminders of your success.

We know from research that what you see in your environment has a
psychological impact on your moods, your attitudes, and your
behavior. Your environment has a great deal of influence over you.
And here's an even more important fact: You have almost total
control over your immediate environment.

Put up pictures, articles, trophies, awards and other symbols of
your past achievements that remind you about your past successes.
Make a special place - a special shelf, wall or section of your
home or office that you pass by every day and fill it with your
success symbols.

This will have a powerful effect on your subconscious mind and will
subtly remind you that you are someone who has consistent success
in life!

This is also a great thing to do for your children. Proudly display
their success symbols as well.

People like to be around those who have a healthy self-esteem and
who are achieving their goals. Commit to acknowledging your
achievements and your brain will begin to tell you the truth...
that you can do ANYTHING!

Taking just 30 minutes to complete this activity will become your
positive springboard into 2010 for even more successes.

© 2009 Jack Canfield

Saturday, December 19, 2009

A Professor's Lesson 30 Years Ago

A Professor's Lesson 30 Years Ago

--posted by amosjwaner

One winter semester during college in upstate New York., I took an 8 AM history class to fulfill a requirement. It was hard to get up for that class, but about 15 of us met 3 times a week to brave the cold winds and trudge to that lecture in a nondescript classroom.

The professor for the class was an odd fellow. He had flaming red hair, usually looking slept on, and wore galoshes with one pantleg in and one out. He would creep shyly into the room wearing his hooded winter coat , once not even removing the hood during the lecture. He was terribly ill at ease with the class and clutched the lecture barely looking up at all through his gold rimmed glasses at his students.

I felt that I needed to do something to stem the boredom that woud ensue in his lecture, so I created a little game for myself. I would vow to find something in his lecture to ask him an intelligent question about, forcing me to pay attention rather than letting my eyes close. The first time I raised my hand, you could tell he was surprised and a little reluctant to find out what I wanted. But he was obviously pleased to have a question to answer. In fact, his answers were always interesting.

I continued to do this every day of the course and found myself actually enjoying the material. The professor seemed to become a bit more relaxed and some of the other students even joined in from time to time. My little game had saved me from being bored, as it was designed to do. And, I learned quite a bit about ancient world history in the bargain. The professor obviously knew his material, but had a hard time passing it on to undergraduates in an interesting way. For all of his odd appearance, he was indeed quite an expert in his field.

But the real lesson I was to learn had yet to happen. On the last day of class we gathered our books and headed out the door for the last time. The shy, red-haired professor stepped directly in front of me, with obvious effort, as I reached the door and put out his hand. He said, "I want to thank you for making this class so interesting," as he shook my hand vigorously and smiled for the first time. I was so surprised. To me, it had been a pleasant way to pass the time in an elective. I had no idea that all of my question asking had any effect on him or the others at all.

That moment has stayed with me for 30 years. Each of us, through the things we say and do, the kindnesses we can freely offer, can have a profound effect not just on our own experiences, but those of others. I don't recall the facts I learned in his class, but I'll never forget the professor who taught me a lesson about the power of acts of kindness, intended or not.

A Professor's Lesson 30 Years Ago--posted by amosjwaner
Daily Good

Friday, December 18, 2009

Should You Trade Up? by Michael Webb

o ~ o ~ o ~ o ~ o ~ o ~ o ~ o ~ o ~


Should You Trade Up?

by Michael Webb
Author, 50 Secrets of Blissful Relationships order today at:

Athena and I have never had a car payment. Our current vehicles
are 6 years old and our previous car was a 13 year old Honda Civic
that ran just fine until the final few months.

When our Honda Civic was getting up in age (and didn't look so
shiny) we have had friends and family ask us point blank "when are
you going to get a new car" and tell us "certainly you can afford
something new". Yes, we can afford just about any car that we
could possibly desire. But no, we don't have any plans on trading
in our perfectly fine Honda for something new(er) simply to impress
others. Yes, when safety or reliability become a factor, we'll be
shopping for something else.

I find it curious, but not surprising that every person who has
suggested that we upgrade our car has been divorced at least once.

Back in 1988 Diamond Cutters International conducted a poll asking
women if they would ever consider trading in their engagement ring
for a bigger, better diamond. 46% of the respondents said yes.

Fifteen years later, these same women have been polled again.
Of those who were willing to trade up, 81% are now divorced.
And what about those sentimental ladies who would never trade in
their original ring? 78% are still married.

Are you the type of person who wants a new car every few years and
sees each raise as an opportunity to move to a bigger house? Are you
easily bored with the latest gadget you bought just a year ago?
Do you always have to have the best television among your peers?
If so, studies have shown that you have a much greater chance of
being tempted to "trade-up" spouses too.

Learn to appreciate what you have and don't be so quick to want to
get the latest model. Otherwise it might REALLY cost you.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Forgiveness by Sheri Rosenthal

Forgiveness by Sheri Rosenthal

“That which you know as truth and that which you know as untruth, put together is the truth.” ~Vedas

We hear so much about forgiveness, in our churches, on Oprah, in new age magazines, but do we truly understand what the big deal about forgiveness is? We read that if we forgive others and ourselves we are doing our spiritual work and becoming better people, but what does that mean to us? You can forgive that guy you dated a while back until you run into him someplace and then you want to wreak revenge on him. You can forgive your parents for your horrible childhood but as soon as you get on the phone with your Dad you are arguing just like you always have. So, what good is forgiveness anyway?

The key to forgiveness is to forgive from the heart not from the mind. Knowing in your rational mind that your parents did the best they could to raise you is not enough to constitute forgiveness. That is why every time you are with your Dad you still argue. If you really forgave him you would not be reacting that way. You would have compassion for his dream and understand that he is just expressing his point of view. If you truly let go of the pain of your childhood, your self-importance, and your need to be right about your point of view, you would not be taking him personally any more. If you were not taking him personally you would not be angry and it would not be necessary to punish him by behaving like an angry child. It behoves us to look at ourselves with honesty and objectivity. You can say you have forgiven someone in your life, but the proof is in the pudding.

“When you hold resentment toward another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel. Forgiveness is the only way to dissolve that link and get free.” ~Catherine Ponder

If you have an emotional reaction in the presence of someone, your heart is telling you that you have not resolved your issues with them. In other words, you have not truly forgiven that person. All of this begs the question, how do we forgive? First, cease lying to yourself and stop telling yourself stories about why you behave the way you do. Stop blaming your behaviour on other people and take responsibility for your emotional reactions. If you could forgive all the people in your life who have hurt or wounded you it would be possible to be in control of your behavior instead of being in reaction to other people all of the time. Imagine living life without experiencing a constant emotional roller coaster of pain, anger, and jealousy! That would be bliss!

The important thing is to have awareness of what has transpired and be able to tell yourself the truth about it. Have you truly forgiven or has your rational mind been telling you a story that you have? Once you have determined what is truth and what is a justification, you are ready for the next step. Second, look at your life with clarity. Try to see what happened in your past, not only from your point of view, but also from the other person’s point of view. We need to be able to walk in the other persons shoes to understand why things happened the way they did. That doesn’t mean you have to agree with what they did or how they did it. Not at all. Your values and beliefs may be very different from theirs. All this means is that you can see the whole truth of what happened and the whole truth encompasses all points of view, not just your own.

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” ~Mahatma Gandhi

Take some time to listen to how you tell the story of your life. Perhaps it would be helpful to journal the story of a particular time in your life that you have been challenged by. Listen to what you have written. Does it sound like you were victimized by your circumstances? Be objective, if someone heard your story would they say someone did you wrong, that you are resentful, vengeful and angry? If so, this is your first clue that you are seeing things from only one point of view. Why? Well, if you felt like someone hurt you then obviously you took the other persons actions personally. You assumed you knew why they did what they did according to your point of view and your beliefs about their words or actions. Chances are that your interpretation of what the other person did or said was not what the other person had in mind when they interacted with you. The key is to imagine what happened from their point of view.

If I say that my husband cheated on me and ruined our marriage and hurt me, I am only telling part of the story. What about my responsibility for my half of the relationship? It is doubtful that I was a vision of loveliness throughout the entire marriage. I had to contribute half of that relationship because all relationships take the contribution of both parties. When I can see both sides clearly, and have compassion for my husband, I can forgive him. But if I am attached to my victim point of view and blame everything on him, forgiveness will never come. Chances are I will bring my anger and resentment into my next relationship as well. This scenario applies to all human interactions in our lives. Rape, physical, emotional and mental abuse, cheating, violence, etc… are all included. Yes, even what we judge to be the most heinous of human activities can be forgiven.

“Sincere forgiveness isn’t colored with expectations that the other person apologize or change. Don’t worry whether or not they finally understand you. Love them and release them. Life feeds back truth to people in its own way and time.” ~Sara Paddison

Seeing things with the eyes of truth means that you stop judging the activities of others and, instead, take responsibility for your interpretation of those activities. It means being responsible for how you write the story of what happened. I could say yes, my husband cheated on me in our marriage but, gosh, I was not aware of how my actions impacted our situation. We both had a lot to learn from that relationship. I am glad I can see what happened clearly and have gratitude for the opportunity to grow and become a better person. even if it hurt pretty badly for a while. The key word here is gratitude! We judge everything that happens in life as good or bad, right or wrong. The truth is life just happens, and life is exactly as it is. As long as we are always judging others and life situations according to our point of view, we will never be able to have gratitude for the challenges and experiences life sends our way. No matter how enlightened a person you may be, things will always happen in life. People you love will die, relationships will come and go, the stock market will crash and rise, your car may be totalled but, if you have gratitude for life’s challenges, you will always be writing a beautiful happy story of your life! Even better, you will never feel victimized by your circumstances.

You may think I am living my life in a fairy tale, but I assure you I’m not. We have been domesticated to process our life in a certain way. If you don’t believe me just watch one soap opera on TV. Everyone is stressed out, creating drama, having emotional outbursts, screaming and arguing, defending their points of view, and generally creating a life of misery! Soap operas are popular because they mimic our lives. I am suggesting a different way of perceiving life, one without judgment and with the ability to see the points of view of other people and to see beliefs other than your own. One where you take responsibility for your mind and what it thinks and, as a result of this internal chatter, how you choose to react to any situation. When you can truly see the other person’s point of view then you can forgive from the heart. True compassion of the human experience is the place from which forgiveness begins. Compassion is an act of love that is free of attachment. Of course, the kind of love I am talking about is unconditional love.

“Many people are afraid to forgive because they feel they must remember the wrong or they will not learn from it. The opposite is true. Through forgiveness, the wrong is released from its emotional stranglehold on us so that we can learn from it. Through the power and intelligence of the heart, the release of forgiveness brings expanded intelligence to work with the situation more effectively.” — David McArthur & Bruce McArthur

Once you have seen the truth you must make the decision to let go of the pain, anger, and resentment you have been holding on to. This requires you to take action. If you are attached to your pain, resentment, and self-righteousness, and addicted to your emotional reactions, this will be a difficult step for you. Taking action requires letting go of the very thing you have been holding on to for so many years.

There is comfort in what we find familiar, even if we are experiencing pain and suffering. The pain and suffering itself becomes the familiarity we seek. It takes absolute faith in yourself plus courage, will, and discipline to let go. But once you let go, it will as if the weight of the world has been taken off your shoulders. In this process it is important to forgive not just the others in our lives, but also ourselves. For most people, giving ourselves the gift of forgiveness is very challenging.

• Forgive yourself for using people in your life to hurt yourself.
• Forgive yourself for not having clarity, for blaming others, and for not taking responsibility for your actions.
• Forgive yourself for wounding others and for the anger, jealousy, and hate you directed toward others.
• Forgive yourself for participating in situations that went against your integrity.
• Forgive yourself for not respecting yourself.
• Forgive yourself for not trusting yourself and having faith in your abilities.
• Forgive yourself for trying to control the people you love.
• And, of course, forgive yourself for not loving yourself 100% just the way you are!

“Am I not destroying my enemies when I make friends of them?”– Abraham Lincoln

More than once my teacher, don Miguel Ruiz, said “In order to merge with spirit your heart must be as light as a feather.”

Well, when you have finally detached from the anger, resentment, and pain of your story your heart will feel as light as a feather. Not only that, but for the first time in your adult life you will be happy, truly happy, and your life will reflect the change back to you in every way. After all what we think in our minds is what manifests in our lives! The bottom line is that we forgive because we love ourselves so much that we want to give ourselves the gift of personal freedom. We forgive not because the other person necessarily deserves it, but because we do not want to carry that load around until we die. Anger, hate, and jealousy will make you old, resentful and ugly, inside and out. The question is, how much do you love and respect yourself? Is it enough to give yourself the gift of forgiveness? I hope so.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Pasco couple learns secret of flower deliveries

Saturday, Dec. 12, 2009

Pasco couple learns secret of flower deliveries
By Pratik Joshi, Herald staff writer

Imagine getting flowers with a note to brighten your day, week after week, not knowing who sent them.

When Sandra Spivey of Pasco got a beautiful flower arrangement for the first time on May 15, she and her husband Bob thought the blossoms were from a relative or friend.

When another bouquet came the next Friday, the couple started calling family from Alaska to Hawaii to Nebraska to personally thank them.

Sandra Spivey, who has been battling cancer for two years, was emotionally touched and surprised by the flowers.

So when the Lucky Flowers delivery truck pulled up again May 29, Bob Spivey called the Pasco flower shop to do some sleuthing.

"They wouldn't tell me who was sending the flowers," he said.

He told a store employee that he would be content if he could find out which state the unknown benefactor lived in.

The Hanford worker said he was put on hold for a long time before an employee revealed the bouquets came courtesy of the flower store.

Bob Spivey had once gone to the store to buy flowers for his sister who had lost her husband to cancer, and he ended up sharing his wife's story.

What he didn't know was that his story touched a chord with Melissa Behen, co-owner of the Road 68 business.

A few years ago, Behen sent flowers to her best friend's mother-in-law in North Carolina. She had cancer and Behen wanted to cheer her up.

Behen said she wanted to do the same again.

So she looked up the Spiveys' address and made sure fresh arrangements were delivered there each Friday.

It's a small gesture that can brighten somebody's day, she said.

When Bob Spivey found out, he thanked her. "He even brought apple cider for us. Tipped our driver and ordered us a pizza," Behen said.

"Bob wanted to let them know they could stop," said Sandra Spivey, a Richland school teacher who wants to go back to work in February after finishing chemotherapy.

But the flowers kept coming, she said. Each time, it's a different and unique arrangement, she said, adding it makes them feel special.

Pasco couple learns secret of flower deliveries

Saturday, Dec. 12, 2009

Pasco couple learns secret of flower deliveries
By Pratik Joshi, Herald staff writer

Imagine getting flowers with a note to brighten your day, week after week, not knowing who sent them.

When Sandra Spivey of Pasco got a beautiful flower arrangement for the first time on May 15, she and her husband Bob thought the blossoms were from a relative or friend.

When another bouquet came the next Friday, the couple started calling family from Alaska to Hawaii to Nebraska to personally thank them.

Sandra Spivey, who has been battling cancer for two years, was emotionally touched and surprised by the flowers.

So when the Lucky Flowers delivery truck pulled up again May 29, Bob Spivey called the Pasco flower shop to do some sleuthing.

"They wouldn't tell me who was sending the flowers," he said.

He told a store employee that he would be content if he could find out which state the unknown benefactor lived in.

The Hanford worker said he was put on hold for a long time before an employee revealed the bouquets came courtesy of the flower store.

Bob Spivey had once gone to the store to buy flowers for his sister who had lost her husband to cancer, and he ended up sharing his wife's story.

What he didn't know was that his story touched a chord with Melissa Behen, co-owner of the Road 68 business.

A few years ago, Behen sent flowers to her best friend's mother-in-law in North Carolina. She had cancer and Behen wanted to cheer her up.

Behen said she wanted to do the same again.

So she looked up the Spiveys' address and made sure fresh arrangements were delivered there each Friday.

It's a small gesture that can brighten somebody's day, she said.

When Bob Spivey found out, he thanked her. "He even brought apple cider for us. Tipped our driver and ordered us a pizza," Behen said.

"Bob wanted to let them know they could stop," said Sandra Spivey, a Richland school teacher who wants to go back to work in February after finishing chemotherapy.

But the flowers kept coming, she said. Each time, it's a different and unique arrangement, she said, adding it makes them feel special.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The Law of Allowing and The Law of Giving by Christy Whitman

The Law of Allowing and The Law of Giving by Christy Whitman

The Law of Allowing

The Law of Allowing is one of the most important laws, but usually the hardest for people to grasp. You may be working with the Law of Attraction, and Deliberate Creation, but if you do not master the Law of Allowing you will not have your desires realized. You will continue to struggle focusing on affirmations, meditations, and vision boards only to be left feeling more frustrated and confused. This is the law that will leave you saying, "Why does this stuff work for other people, but not me?"

Do you think that if someone with beliefs opposed to yours gets their way, you can't have your way? Or do you believe there's room for it all?

The truth is, there is freedom in allowing circumstances to be what they are and people to be who they are, whether you agree with them or not.

So, how in the world do you accept situations and people that stand for something you don't? Or that want the opposite of what you want?

We tend to think we can't have it both ways. So what do we do? We push back! We hold protest marches against war, we organize campaigns against drugs, we battle disease. And yet, understanding the Law of Attraction -- that whatever you are focused on you attract more of -- when you are focused on what you do not want in an effort to defeat it or resist it, you are not allowing what you do want to flow to you.

The Law of Allowing is about relaxing - having a relaxed, but positively focused mind - and allowing the universe to deliver to you what you're wanting. When you say yes to something, you attract more of that into your life, because that is what you are focused on. When you say no to something, you attract more of that into your life, because that is what you are focused on. So in order to allow what you want to flow to you, you must allow others to focus on what they want - even if you don't agree with it. When you understand these principles and put them to use consciously, intentionally and deliberately, you put yourself in a place of nonresistance.

How do you know if you're allowing? By noticing how you feel.

Your emotions are always your guide. Whenever you are in a place of feeling good, you are in a place of allowing. Nothing is more important than that you feel good!

So what happens if someone is in your life is acting inappropriate? Does that mean you take the abuse, disrespect, and the negativity? NO! You are allowed to set your boundaries, and when someone is crossing them, you can say "No more". This means trying not to change them, but respectfully telling them what is your truth.

We had a lady that we had to ask to leave the Goddess weekend, because she was inappropriate, disrespectful, and didn't play well with others. We allowed her to be who she was, but after her attitude and behavior was so disruptive, we had to set our boundaries and ask her to leave. Having her there, did not feel good. Asking her to leave did not feel good. But after she left, it felt amazing.

She is allowed to be herself. We did not try to change her. But we respectfully ask that she be herself somewhere else.

The Law of Giving

Why is The Law of Giving important? This is a law that most people forget about. This is a key in creating abundance. To give is to receive. Giving and receiving are the two opposite seats on the see-saw of life. Every relationship is one of give and take. Everything in the Universe is energy. Energy is continually being exchanged in the Universe as it flows from gas to liquid to solid, from solid to liquid to gas. The circulation, the flow of energy means that something or someone is always giving energy one moment in one form and receiving energy the next moment in another form. It is when you give that you also receive. The intention behind the giving, if it is to create happiness for the receiver and the giver, will ensure it generates increase. Happiness is expansive because it supports life and sustains life. It adds to, or increases, life. The giver also benefits from this exp ansiveness, this increase in life. The Law of Giving says if you want to receive something first give it to others. The best way to get what you want is to help others get what they want. Giving and receiving, with the correct intention, allows the flow of energies in the Universe to provide for the Giver and for the Receiver. For as long as you give you will be receiving.

Giving is an esoteric science that never fails to produce results if it is done with love and joy, because the Law will shower you with ten-fold return.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Thank You Game by Cheryl Richardson

The Thank You Game by Cheryl Richardson

I love this time of year and I'm always excited to announce the "Thank You Game," during Thanksgiving week here in the States. Whether you celebrate Thanksgiving or not, saying "thank you" to the people in your life is not only a wonderful way to bring some unexpected kindness to others, it's also a way to share the wealth of gratitude and to feel the power of connection. Showing your appreciation is like shining a bright, nourishing light on a beautiful flower - it causes people to open their hearts and smile.

So here's the deal. The object of the "Thank You Game" is to find a creative and inexpensive way to thank or acknowledge those people in your life who often get overlooked. Here are ten examples of what you might do...

1. Send a "thanks for being a great mom or dad" card to a busy parent and acknowledge them for contributing to humanity in a powerful way.

2. Offer thanks to a military family in your community. You could send a small gift of gratitude, help out with work around the house, or offer to take someone to lunch. Some of these folks have been away from their loved ones for months and months and they could really use your loving kindness.

3. Speak to the boss of an administrative assistant who has provided you with exceptional care and let him or her know how great you were treated.

4. Send a thank you card to someone who would least expect it like your auto mechanic, lawyer, accountant, dental hygienist, or doctor. If you own a deck of Grace Cards or Self-Care Cards, include a card, too. Trust me, you'll make their day!

5. Bring a box of goodies to the post office, your local fire department, or police station, and let the employees know that you appreciate them. From what I'm told, they rarely get this kind of acknowledgment, and seeing the surprised look on their faces is so much fun!

6. Leave a larger than normal tip hidden under a cup for your favorite restaurant server.

7. Send a free "Self-Care Card" or "Grace Card" via our new iPhone app to thank someone special.

8. Write the words "thank you" on the bills you pay this month (and include a Grace or Self Care Card, too). I've actually gotten calls from strangers about the cards they've received with my bills. You never know what a difference a small gesture of gratitude can make.

9. Bring some cookies to a local Veteran's or Nursing home.

10. Send a note of thanks to the teacher who takes good care of your son or daughter.

Whatever you decide to do, unleash your creative spirit and have some fun. As you play "The Thank You Game," you'll probably discover that saying thank you and giving to others feels so good you'll want to do it all year long!

Take Action Challenge

Stop for a moment and browse through your address book to identify the people who serve you, keep you safe, or help make your life easier in some way. Then, consider the people in your neighborhood, community, family or friends. Who could use a special "thank you" this week? Make a list of at least five people and thank one special person every day. Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Living a Five Star Life by Betty Mahalik

An excerpt from

Living a Five Star Life
by Betty Mahalik

I've watched the movie Chicken Run at least a half-dozen times. Just beneath the surface of its simplistic look and story line lie a number of wonderful messages told through the eyes of a bunch of Claymation chickens trying to break out of their chicken-wire world to escape their fate at the chopping block. Their freedom leader, a feisty little hen named Ginger, comments profoundly in one scene: "the fences are all in your mind." She reminds her fellow chickens (and us), that a bigger obstacle than the physical fences they're surrounded by are the mental fences that hold them captive.

It’s been a good reminder for me on those occasions when I’ve been dealing my own mental fences...those created by self-doubt, uncertainty, fear. Can you relate? Where have you fenced yourself in mentally in recent days or weeks? Perhaps your mental fence is procrastination, a deadening habit that keeps you stuck. Maybe yours, like mine, is related to self-doubt, and the on-going internal noise it produces that keeps you immobilized. Perhaps yours is the belief that you don't deserve success, so you sabotage yourself to avoid having to find out how successful you could be. There are a million variations of the theme, but the result is still the same: we stay stuck like the chickens in the movie.

One of the key questions in the Best Year Yet® program is: "How do I limit myself and how can I stop?" Those limitations are never external. They always live inside us. The antidote to being trapped by our mental fences is to create a compelling enough vision that, like Ginger and her flock of chicken friends, we're willing to resort to amazing measures to break out. The formula:


I challenge you to take some bold, even outrageous steps to break free of your mental fences. If it's procrastination, declare a "freedom day" and take action on everything you've been putting off: from cleaning your office to making phone calls or responding to emails you've avoided.

If it's self-doubt, sit down and write out everything you value and why it's important. Then challenge yourself to eliminate anything that doesn't absolutely reflect your values, or add something that is a profound statement of who you are.

Recognize that your mental fences can only keep you stuck as long as you're looking at them. They can only contain you as long as you're not taking actions consistent with your vision. Go ahead, take the action you've avoided and leap into a future filled with possibilities. And remember, the fences are all in your mind!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Customer Love by Mac Anderson

An excerpt from

Customer Love

by Mac Anderson

As flight cancellations and delays wreak havoc on weary travelers, and planes are fuller than ever, the Wall Street Journal has managed to find a bright spot: United Airlines Captain Denny Flanagan.

On a flight headed your way, there is a pilot who is literally a gift from the heavens. For 21 years now, Flanagan, a former navy pilot, has put the friendly in friendly skies.

With his sense of humor and personal touch, he individually welcomes aboard every passenger on his United Airlines plane.

A father of five, Flanagan has also been known to buy food for planeloads of passengers on delayed flights. He snaps photos of dogs in the cargo hold to show owners their pets are safe and call the parents of children traveling alone.

"I want to treat them like I treat my family and it works. It's like hospitality. You stand at the door and you greet people when they come in and you say goodbye on the porch and wave to them," said Flanagan, who is 56 and lives in Ohio.

His unique brand of hospitality includes sending handwritten notes to frequent flyers and raffling off bottles of wine.

"How 'bout that? A bottled of chilled chardonnay from a pilot," said a delighted Paul Schroeder, a lucky United passenger.

He has developed quite a following in the air and online. One of the many posts on about Flanagan read: "His effort rubbed off on the crew too, they were great."

Attitudes are truly contagious, and Captain Flanagan's is certainly worth catching!

Fast Food Love by Michael Webb

Fast Food Love
by Michael Webb Author, 50 Secrets of Blissful Relationships order
today at:

I read a news story a few weeks ago about a school that bucked
the system and tossed out the pizzas and french fries and other
kid-friendly food from its cafeteria and reintroduced healthy meals
that faded away over the last few decades.

At first, there was a big uproar. The kids wanted their fast
food back and others were worried about the significant increase
in cost for the home made, healthy food they were now serving in
the cafeteria. But something miraculous happened.

The kids now behave. The hallways aren't frantic. Even the teachers
are happy.

The school used to be out of control. Kids packed
weapons. Discipline problems swamped the principal's office.
But not since 1997.

Since then there have been zero expulsions, no suicides, not one
person caught doing drugs or carrying weapons. The fake food in
the cafeteria was replaced with real food and the vending machines
were carted away. And what a difference it made.

When kids are healthy their attitudes and dispositions change.

Now let's talk about love. Over the last few decades we've slowly
introduced so much fake love into our relationship diet that it has
now become the staple for many couples. Most people don't even
know what real, healthy love is these days. We no longer have
the patience to build love from scratch. We want fast-food love.
It's instantly gratifying even though it might make us sick in the
long run. Men and women don't want a courtship. They want to jump
straight from infatuation to intimacy. And we've got a lot of sick
relationships as a result.

While there is *some* nutrition in fast food, if it is your steady
diet, you are bound to suffer in the future.

Here are some examples of fast-food love: • Expensive gifts •
Quick physical intimacy • Flirting • Time together in silence
(like watching movies) • Dreaming about fantasies • Infatuation
("loving" someone you don't *really* know yet)

Healthy, nutritious love: • Serving each other • Sacrificing for
one another • Little gifts, just because • Regular, meaningful
conversations • Long physical intimacy with your spouse •
Planning together for the future • Commitment to someone you
really know

Is it any coincidence that as we introduce more and more fast-food
love into our relationships that they become more and more unhealthy
and the divorce rate keeps climbing?

Consider your own relationship. What does your diet look like? Maybe
its time to cut back on the fast-food love and start introducing
more healthy forms on love into your relationship (or get out of a
relationship that does not have healthy love). Yes, it takes more
time and energy, but the results are well worth it. And don't forget
that your real diet has a direct impact on your relationships just
as we saw what happened to the school children. Maybe its time to
start eating healthy too.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Dr. Wayne Dyer: Rewards Through Service by Marie-Louise Cook

SUCCESS Legend Series:
Dr. Wayne W. Dyer Rewards Through Service

by Marie-Louise Cook

Shoveling snow for neighbors and carrying their grocery bags is probably not taught as a success strategy by many business schools, but for Wayne W. Dyer, best-selling author and the owner of a multimillion-dollar business, it represents fundamental principles of success in business and life.

“I’ve run a business that’s been very, very successful. I run it on a very simple principle: I’m here to serve,” Dyer tells SUCCESS in an interview from his Maui, Hawaii, home.

While many business owners pay lip service to the idea of running a customer-focused company, few take it to the level that Dyer or his employees do. “If anybody writes me a bad check, I send them a gift. I send them something and remind them of that, and then I just drop it and I let it be in them. If we’re selling books at the back of a room, and somebody doesn’t have the money, we give the book to them. Always. When people make requests—‘Can we have this?’ or ‘Can you donate to this?’—the answer is always yes.”

Dyer’s approach to business may be unorthodox, but it has earned the psychoanalyst tremendous financial success, as well as a legion of intensely loyal fans around the world, during a career spanning more than 30 years. “

It makes sense to me to be generous, to be thoughtful, and to extend as much service as you possibly can and to suspend thoughts of what’s in it for you. It’s so simple. It’s not ‘He who has the gold makes the rules.’ It’s the other way around. Treat people the way you would like to be treated. That, to me, is a formula not just for business, but for life,” says Dyer, 69. “Lao Tzu [the ancient Chinese philosopher] says if you want to have meaning in your life, return to your original nature. He had what he called the ‘cardinal virtues,’ which is to have reverence for all of life, to practice gentleness and kindness to all beings, and to extend service. Instead of thinking about yourself, tame the ego. That’s how I live my life; that’s what I teach. I believe that businesses who do that will thrive.”

Philosophies Born Early

Dyer uses meditation to keep this philosophy at the forefront of his life and work. Even before a speaking engagement, in meditation, he asks, “How may I serve? How may I serve?” he says. “This helps me to keep my ego out of my talk. It keeps my attention off ‘What’s in it for me?’ or ‘How well am I going to do?’ or ‘How much money am I going to make?’ or ‘Are they going to like me?’ I meditate to let go of all of that and to really get into the moment of what it is that I am doing.”

Dyer’s belief in offering service stems from his early years, mostly spent in orphanages and foster homes in his native Detroit. He also learned self-reliance and the power of thought when he was very young.

“A woman once told me, ‘Wayne, if you don’t want something bad to happen, or if you want good things for yourself in your life, be careful about what you think, for you will become what you think as sure as the dawn follows night. Always remember, thoughts are things.’ Wow, the entire world wrapped up in those three magic words: Thoughts are things! A thought is the most powerful force in the universe. You can make of your life whatever you wish if you learn to make your thoughts work for you,” he says.

“I grew up in the east side of Detroit in an area where there was very little, except for a lot of scarcity, poverty and hunger, but I never woke up saying, ‘I’m an orphan again today, isn’t this terrible? Poor me.’ I never ever felt that I was unfairly treated. I’ve never been a complainer. There were a couple of very affl uent neighborhoods nearby, but I never thought for one second that those people had more than I had. It just seemed that they got what they were entitled to, and if I really wanted those things, then I would have them, too.”

Attracting Abundance

From the age of 4, Dyer discovered that service brought rewards. “I just knew how to attract abundance or prosperity or money into my life,” he recalls. “I was the richest kid in the orphanage. It was very simple: When it snowed, I’d go out and shovel the walks along the street. I didn’t ask for anything. I’d just go back and tell people, ‘I shoveled your walk.’ People would always give me money. I’d go to the grocery store down the street and help people carry their bags out. We had coal furnaces in those days, and I’d help people take the ashes out and park them in the alley. When I found out that an empty soda pop bottle was worth 2 cents when it was returned, I used to follow people around and ask them, ‘Are you through with that? When you’re done, I’ll take it off your hands.’ ”

After high school, Dyer enlisted in the U.S. Navy for four years’ service. The experience convinced him that he wanted to have control of his own life, so he enrolled at Wayne State University in Detroit. He went on to get a master’s degree in school counseling and later enrolled in a doctorate program in psychotherapy.

After six years of teaching, Dyer was 36, had a successful private therapy practice and was an associate professor at St. John’s University in New York. His lectures on positive thinking and motivational speaking techniques caught the attention of a literary agent who persuaded Dyer to write a book. The result was Your Erroneous Zones, published in 1976, which gave readers a step-by-step method for escaping the trap of negative thinking and taking control of their lives.

The following year, disappointed with the book’s initial sales and intent on preventing it from sliding into publishing oblivion, Dyer resigned from his teaching position to promote the book. He loaded up his station wagon with cartons of books for a nationwide tour lasting more than a year, calling radio stations, newspapers, TV stations and bookstores in each city he visited.

Hard-Earned Success

His effort earned his book a place on the New York Times bestseller list (where it stayed for 64 weeks) and resulted in invitations to appear on several TV talk shows, including The Tonight Show. The book has since sold 35 million copies in 47 languages and has become one of the best-selling books of all time.

Dyer has since written more than 30 books, created audio and video programs, and appeared in the movie The Shift. His most recent work is the New York Times best-seller Excuses Begone!

Employing his philosophies has contributed to his success. “One of the reasons most people are not good at solving problems and manifesting or attracting into their life what they want is because their thoughts are always focused on what’s wrong and on what’s missing and on the problem,” he says. “

To change the way you think about your life and create success for yourself, you need to put your attention not on what you want so much as on what you intend—what you intend to create, what you intend to manifest. When I sit down to write a book, I always have the publishers create a jacket for the book with the title on it, and I wrap it around a book that’s already written and I sit it on my writing space, and every single day, I assume this book is already completed. I think from the end always, and then I allow whatever needs to come through to complete it, to come through—that’s my secret. Use your imagination to assume the feeling of having your wish fulfilled. Begin with the end in mind,” Dyer says. “

There are endless ways to attract prosperity. Most people fall into that trap of believing negative things— that the economy is going into the toilet or things are going to get worse. If you buy into that, you become what you think about whether you want it or not. Why not pick the thoughts that are at least going to lead you where you want to go?”

Wayne W. Dyer’s books include Your Erroneous Zones; 10 Secrets for Success and Inner Peace; The Power of Intention ; Change Your Thoughts—Change Your Life; There’s A Spiritual Solution to Every Problem; You’ll See It When You Believe It and Excuses Begone! He also appears on PBS and in the film The Shift.

What You Want is Waiting For You! by Sugandhi Iyer

What You Want is Waiting For You!

What you want is waiting for you to get aligned to it.

Think about it this way-

You are here at point A, and you notice something that you decide
you definitely 'don't' want.

From noticing what you don't want, you have a thought of what you
really want, and it feels good to you.

For example, maybe one day you get into a restaurant where they
serve you food that is not fresh. From this experience of bad food,
you get a desire to eat better tasting/quality food. Your task now
is to let go of the experience of the unfresh (is this a valid
word? My spell check does not think so :-)) food, and move towards
the food that you will really like to taste. You may discover
another restaurant that you really like, or it could also be that
the same restaurant starts to serve you what you like- great
tasting food.

After all, anything is possible in this world of infinite
possibilities. I see such things happen all the time in my line of

While thinking of the unfresh food, and talking and feeling bad
about it, you cannot really start to give out the vibrations that
you require to give out to have the experience of amazingly fresh
tasting food because your vibrations don't match up to what you'd
really like.

Your first job therefore is to let go of this contrasting
experience and start to get aligned with the food that you know you
will really like to have. Start to feel what it would feel like if
you could taste and enjoy this amazing food. Sometimes even a small
wish with some letting go, will allow the good stuff in.

Even though the above sounds simple enough, here is where the
problem lies for many people.

Having tasted the contrast and identifying what they don't like,
and from that discovering a desire for an improved situation,
people find it difficult to let go of the contrasting experience
and focus instead on the feelings they would really like to have,
and that is of a vastly improved situation.

This is where you have to learn the ropes and skills of creation.

Your mind, and especially your sub-conscious mind, has to get
trained and you then start to move towards what you want with rapid

It happens quickly once your mind is trained to get out of what you
don't want, and get into what you really want. You also need to
'see through' situations, and look at the truth of anything. Your
perception of the situation has to change.

While holding onto a cup full of bad coffee and sipping from it,
all the while feeling bad about it, you cannot make room for the
good smelling and tasting coffee that is just waiting for you.

But first you must know that this amazing coffee is waiting for
you. Just let go of the cup of bad coffee and make your way with
total determination towards the cup of aromatic coffee waiting for
you to take a sip.

Every wish and contrasting experience you've had till now resulted
in your desires already being fulfilled, ready and waiting for you.
While standing outside the space of the fulfilled desire, you
cannot experience it. Get in with these fulfilled desires and start
to enjoy them. No more waiting outside. After all when you see
people dancing, you don't wait outside do you? Your natural
tendency will be to get in and dance with your favorite partner. So
do get in, and do enjoy your dance. Your partner and everything
else is waiting.

Just get aligned to it. It's easy!

Lots of Love to you!

Love and Light, Sugandhi Iyer

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Stay Focused on Your Core Genius by Jack Canfield

Stay Focused on Your Core Genius
by Jack Canfield

I believe you have inside of you a core genius... some one thing that you love to do, and do so well, that you hardly feel like doing anything else. It’s effortless for you and a whole lot of fun. And if you could make money doing it, you’d make it your lifetime’s work.

In most cases, your Core Genius is directly tied to your passions and life-purpose.

Successful people believe this, too. That's why they put their core genius first. They focus on it—and delegate everything else to other people on their team.

For me, my core genius lies in the area of teaching, training, coaching and motivating. Another core genius is writing and compiling books. Over my 35 year career, I have written, co-authored, compiled and edited more than 150 books, and I love to do it! I do it well, and people report that they get great value from it.

Compare that to the other people in the world who go through life doing everything, even those tasks they’re bad at or that could be done more cheaply, better, and faster by someone else.

They simply can’t find the time to focus on their core genius because they fail to delegate even the most menial of tasks.

When you delegate the grunt work—the things you hate doing or those tasks that are so painful, you end up putting them off—you get to concentrate on what you love to do. You free up your time so that you can be more productive. And you get to enjoy life more.

So why is delegating routine tasks and unwanted projects so difficult for most people?

Surprisingly, most people are afraid of looking wasteful or being judged as being above everyone else. They are afraid to give up control or reluctant to spend the money to pay for help. Deep down, most people simply don't want to let go.

Others (potentially you) have simply fallen into the habit of doing everything themselves. "It's too time-consuming to explain it to someone," you say. "I can do it more quickly and better myself anyway." But can you?

Delegate Completely!

If you’re a professional earning $75 per hour and you pay a neighborhood kid $10 an hour to cut the grass, you save the effort of doing it yourself on the weekend and gain one extra hour when you could profit by $65. Of course, while one hour does’t seem like much, multiply that by 52 weekends a year and you discover you’Ave gained 52 hours a year at $65 per hour —or an extra $3,380 in potential earnings.

Similarly, if you’re a real estate agent, you need to list houses, gather information for the multiple listings, attend open houses, do showings, put keys in lock boxes, write offers and make appointments. And, if you’re lucky, you eventually get to close a deal.

But let’s say that you’re the best closer in the area.

Why would you want to waste your time writing listings, doing lead generation, placing lock boxes, and making videos of the property when you could have a staff of colleagues and assistants doing all that, thus freeing you up to do more closing? Instead of doing just one deal a week, you could be doing three deals because you had delegated what you’re less good at.

One of the strategies I use and teach is complete delegation. It simply means that you delegate a task once and completely - rather than delegating it each time it needs to be done.

When my niece came to stay with us one year while she attended the local community college, we made a complete delegation - the grocery shopping. We told her she could have unlimited use of our van if she would buy the groceries every week. We provided her with a list of staples that we always want in the house (eggs, butter, milk, ketchup, and so on), and her job was to check every week and replace anything that was running low.

In addition, my wife planned meals and let her know which items she wanted for the main courses (fish, chicken, broccoli, avocados, and so on). The task was delegated once and saved us hundreds of hours that year that could be devoted to writing, exercise, family time, and recreation.

Most entrepreneurs spend less than 30% of their time focusing on their core genius and unique abilities.

In fact, by the time they've launched a business, it often seems entrepreneurs are doing everything but the one thing they went into business for in the first place.

Many salespeople, for example, spend more time on account administration than they do on the phone or in the field making sales, when they could hire a part-time administrator (or share the cost with another salesperson) to do this time-consuming detail work. In most cases, in a fraction of the time it would take them and at a fraction of the cost.

Most female executives spend too much time running their household, when they could easily and inexpensively delegate this task to a cleaning service or part-time mother's helper, freeing them to focus on their career or spend more quality time with their family.

Don't let this be your fate!

Identify your core genius, then delegate completely to free up more time to focus on what you love to do.

I believe that you can trade, barter, pay for and find volunteer help to do almost everything you don't want to do, leaving you to do what you are best at - and which will ultimately make you the most money and bring you the most happiness.

© 2009 Jack Canfield

Friday, November 6, 2009

"Never forget: the secret of creating riches..." Sir John Templeton

"Never forget: the secret of creating riches for oneself is to create them for others." — Sir John Templeton: Pioneer global investor and philanthropist

You know the story of Bill Gates. From a score of 1590 out of 1600 on the SAT to dropping out of Harvard. Then founding Microsoft and becoming the world’s richest man. But there’s something that’s usually forgotten about his story. He didn't climb to the summit of success alone — he carried millions of people with him. People from all walks of life who were able to prosper because of him. Find your own path — but make sure it's wide enough to handle all the lives it will change. Your Future You awaits.

One Day by Matisyahu

One Day by Matisyahu
Musician Matisyahu is the personification of harmony. He is a Hasidic Jewish musician from New York City known for blending traditional Jewish themes with reggae, rock, and hip-hop sounds. He pushes musical boundaries by incorporating a variety of genres to create unique sounds with deep messages that aim to unite and uplift. Matisyahu once said, "All of my songs are influenced and inspired by the teachings that inspire me. I want my music to have meaning, to be able to touch people and make them think. Chasidism teaches that music is 'the quill of the soul.' Music taps into a very deep place and speaks to us in a way that regular words can't." Listen to one of his latest songs 'One Day', which he created as an anthem for hope and a source of inspiration for people struggling to open their hearts and stay positive.

Be The Change!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

"Blame" -- TUT... A Note from the Universe

Without "blame," at least 50% of all grounded relationships would have continued sailing.

And I'm all for sailing.

Your first mate,
The Universe

Not that "fault" doesn't exist .... but blame throws the whole thing out of context.

Thoughts become things... choose the good ones! ®
© ®

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Thought Power by Swami Sivananda

Be careful of your thoughts. Whatever you send out of your mind, comes back to you. Every thought you think, is a boomerang. If you hate another, hate will come back to you. If you love others, love will come back to you. An evil thought is thrice cursed. First, it harms the thinker by doing injustice to his mental body. Secondly, it harms the person who is its object. Lastly, it harms all mankind by vitiating the whole mental atmosphere.

Every evil thought is as a sword drawn on the person to whom it is directed. If you entertain thoughts of hatred, you are really a murderer of that man against whom you foster thoughts of hatred. You are your own suicide, because these thoughts rebound upon you only. A mind tenanted by evil thoughts acts as a magnet to attract like thoughts from others and thus intensifies the original evil. Evil thoughts thrown into the mental atmosphere poison receptive minds. To dwell on an evil thought gradually deprives it of its repulsiveness and impels the thinker to perform an action which embodies it.

Very carefully watch all your thoughts. Suppose you are assailed by gloomy thoughts. You experience depression. Take a small cup of milk or tea. Sit calmly. Close your eyes. Find out the cause for the depression and try to remove the cause. The best method to overcome the gloomy thoughts and the consequent depression, is to think of inspiring thoughts and inspiring things. Remember again, positive overcomes negative. This is a grand effective law of nature. [...]

The science of thought power is very interesting and subtle. This thought-world is more real relatively than this physical universe. The power of thought is very great. Every thought of yours has a literal value to you in every possible way. The strength of your body, the strength of your mind, your success in life and the pleasures you give to others by your company - all depend on the nature and quality of your thoughts. You must know thought-culture, and develop thought power.

--Swami Sivananda, in 'Thought Power'

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Question

How much pain am I willing to go through in my determination to see the
world through my world view rather than seeing it through the world view of

Am I going to continue to look through my ideas of shortage mentality,
seeing unfairness and injustice? Or am I going to look at the world through
the eyes of Source, through the eyes of connection, through the eyes of
well being?

That really is the question!

San Francisco 7/28/09

Disturb Me, Please! by Margaret Wheatley

Disturb Me, Please!

In graduate school, I had one professor who encouraged us to notice what surprised or disturbed us. If we were surprised by some statement, it indicated we were assuming that something else was true. If we were disturbed by a comment, it indicated we held a belief contrary to that. Noticing what disturbs me has been an incredibly useful lens into my interior, deeply held beliefs. When I'm shocked at anther's position, I have the opportunity to see my own position in greater clarity. When I hear myself saying "How could anyone believe something like that?!" a doorway has opened for me to see what I believe. These moments of true disturbance are gre gifts. In making my beliefs visible, they allow me to consciously choose them again, or change them.

What if we were to be together and listen to each other's comments with a willingness to expose rather than to confirm our own beliefs and opinions? What if we were to willingly listen to one another with the awareness that we each see the world in unique ways? And with the expectation that I could learn something new if I listen for the differences rather than the similarities?

We have this opportunity many times in a day, everyday. What might we see, what might we learn, what might we create together, if we become this kind of listener, one who enjoys the differences and welcomes in disturbance? I know we would be delightfully startled by how much difference there is. And then we would be wonderfully comforted by how much closer we became, because every time we listen well, we move towards each other. From our new thoughts and our new companions, we would all become wiser.

It would be more fruitful to explore this strange and puzzling world if we were together. It would also be far less frightening and lonely. We would be together, brought together by our differences rather than separated by them. When we are willing to be disturbed by newness rather than clinging to our certainty, when we are willing to truly listen to someone who sees the world differently, then wonderful things happen. We learn that we don't have to agree with each other in order to explore together. There is no need to be joined together at the head, as long as we are joined together at the heart.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Simple Act by Cheryl Richardson

A Simple Act by Cheryl Richardson

This morning I watched a recorded segment from an Oprah Show that told the story of a woman, Angela, who prayed with a young man who attempted to rob her at gunpoint while she worked behind the counter in her office. I imagine many of you may have heard about the story. Out of fear and desperation, she begged the man to spare her life and then started praying out loud asking to be protected. She told him, "You're too young to do this. Don't throw away your precious life. You don't look like a person who would want to hurt someone." The young man insisted that he had no choice because his family was about to be evicted from their home. He didn't know what else to do.

Eventually, as the woman continued to talk with him, the man dropped to his knees, began to cry, and asked her to pray with him. And she did. Shortly after he gave her the bullet from the gun and said, "No one's ever talked to me like this."

It was that line that stayed with me long after the story was over. As it turns out, the young man was depressed, had attempted suicide in the past, and was now feeling enormous pressure to provide for his fiance and young child without believing he had the ability to do so (and given his state of mind, he didn't). One simple act of love from a woman who reinforced the preciousness of his life was what he needed to see a different way. Later in the evening he turned himself in and is awaiting a hearing. It is my hope that he gets counseling and guidance, and a chance to help others with a lengthy community service project that will teach him a new trade.

When times are tough and life feels dire, solutions and help can seem so far away, completely unavailable, or overwhelming at best. But, more times than not, the opening to grace begins with an act of love - a willingness to listen rather than criticize, a prayer of forgiveness, an affirming statement that reminds a young woman of her inherent goodness, or an offer of support that sets a dad on a better path.

Today I vow to remember this. In my life I've been witness to the fact that a simple act of love contains a kind of power that goes beyond what the human mind can comprehend. It can shift consciousness in an instant and change a life forever. As I go about my week, I intend to smile at strangers more, look for opportunities to speak an encouraging word, or offer a prayer of hope for someone in need. I invite you to join me. Check out the "Take Action Challenge" below and use your own simple act of love to change a life forever.

Take Action Challenge

Imagine that within your heart lies a powerful force that can move mountains. Your loving thoughts can heal. Your loving words can calm a worried soul. Your loving actions can do more good than you may ever know. Affirm your willingness to use this power for good in the world. Then, invite opportunities to come to you and keep your eyes open.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

An Excerpt from
Charging the Human Battery
by Mac Anderson

"The hardest arithmetic to master is that which enables us to count our blessings."
-Eric Hoffer

According to legend, a young man while roaming the dessert came across a spring of delicious crystal-clear water. The water was so sweet he filled his leather canteen so he could bring some back to a tribal elder who had been his teacher. After a four-day journey he presented the water to the old man who took a deep drink, smiled warmly and thanked his student lavishly for the sweet water. The young man returned to his village with a happy heart.

Later, the teacher let another student taste the water. He spat it out, saying it was awful. It apparently had become stale because of the old leather container. The student challenged his teacher: "Master, the water was foul. Why did you pretend to like it?"

The teacher replied, "You only tasted the water. I tasted the gift. The water was simply the container for an act of living-kindness and nothing could be sweeter."

Self-motivation without gratitude is impossible. Our energy is "sapped" when our entire focus is on what's wrong instead of what is right with our lives. One of our greatest challenges is to live and love in spite of pain and find gratitude in the midst of it all.

Reflect for a moment on this beautiful quote from Melody Beattie:

"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."

Monday, September 21, 2009

Happiness is an inside job by Pam Thomas

Happiness is an inside job by Pam Thomas

"Happiness doesn't depend on what we have, but it does depend on how we feel toward what we have. We can be happy with little and miserable with much."
William Dempster Hoard

Happiness truly is an internal "thing" that radiates from the inside out. We can say that we will be happy once we have the bigger bank account, the larger house, the fast car, the great significant other; the bottom line is, if we aren't truly happy being who we are the external "stuff" won't mean a thing. Think about it. We truly don't have to search far for happiness, nor do we have to depend on others or things to supply that happiness.


1) Take stock of the things that you currently have and express your gratitude. For example, "I am grateful for the roof I have over my head." "I am grateful for the food that is on my table."

As a matter of fact, for the next 21 days share five things you are grateful for and do so in the morning before your feet hit the floor and at night before you go to sleep. You can write them down in a journal or say what you are grateful to yourself; sharing gratitude for the things that you already have not only promotes happiness, but it helps you to attract more of the good "stuff".

2) Make a point each day to do something that brings you joy. It doesn't have to be anything that requires a lot of time or even money, it just has to be something that lights you up on the inside. For example, playing some upbeat dance music, reading the comic's page of the newspaper, or watching a funny movie.

3) Get outside in the sunshine. A great way to lift a mood and create happiness is to be out in the sun for about 15 minutes.

4) Get moving. Exercise and movement is an awesome way to increase the chemicals in your brain that promote happiness. Dance, walk, jog, or even skip...just get moving.

5) Stop the negative self talk. Saying negative things about yourself will only diminish your own happiness. Instead, find one thing that you really like about you and focus on that one thing. Do you have a kind heart? Are your eyes a pretty color?

Whatever you choose, just remember that happiness is a choice you make and solely dependent upon you.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Who turned off the power? - Pam Thomas

Who turned off the power? -Pam Thomas

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent - Eleanor Roosevelt

It is true that no one has the right to make us feel powerless or less of a person. NO ONE! And while it is a bitter pill to sometimes swallow, we do have a say or choice in how someone makes us feel. With that said, then why is it so easy to feel inferior or powerless?

There could be many reasons:

* Maybe someone we loved put us down and because we loved them, we believed them. (Hey, people we love and/or love us know us best, right? NOT ALWAYS.)

* Maybe it is because we have always been afraid to stand up for ourselves in fear we would rock the boat or make someone angry.

* Maybe it is because we spend time comparing ourselves with others and wishing we had what they have.

* Maybe it is because we just don't trust ourselves and our abilities.

Does any of this sound familiar? If so, please don't despair because reclaiming your personal power is absolutely possible. Give the following a whirl and see what happens:

1) Make a list of your MANY amazing attributes. (Yes, you have many!!) You should even write down all the attributes you wish to have.

2) As you write, if your inner-critic or self-doubter (that little contradictory voice) rears its head, thank it for its contributions and then tell it to be quiet. Please be sure just to keep writing!

3) Take your list and over the next 90 days read your list to yourself five times in the morning and five times at night before bed.

4) Say to yourself as often as possible, "It's none of my business what other people think of me, but it is my business what I think of me." It's true, you can't control what others think so why be held hostage by their thoughts or give away your power to those thoughts?

Just remember, you do have the power and no one has the right to turn it off.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

A Tale With a Storybook Ending

A Tale With a Storybook Ending

A hidden connection is stronger than an obvious one. --Heraclitus

Inspiration of the Day

They met on Boston Common - two men with little in common. One a well-heeled, high-powered attorney, the other a street-schooled, often ignored homeless person.

Rob slept on a sidewalk. Peter had a swank condo in the Back Bay. But every morning they would cross paths here in the park and over the course of several months, actually became good friends.

How did that happen? Such contrasting men, living such disparate lives. You'd think after the weather and box scores they'd run out of things to talk about. And indeed, they did run out.

"So I gave Robert a copy of a book I really loved called 'Water for Elephants' and we would talk about that," Peter said.

Discussing the book became their way of connecting, and a friendship was born.

"And then one day I asked him, 'What'd you do with the book?' and he said, 'I gave it to a fella over there,'" Peter said.

"I knew there were a lot of people who read," Rob said.

"So it occurred to us that there was an interest out here that could draw people together," Peter said.

"You'd be surprised by how many people actually read," Rob said.

About a year ago, Peter and Ron started the Homeless Book Club. The group was dissecting a group of short stories by O'Henry. They meet every Tuesday in a church conference room. Peter buys the books. In the beginning he offered to bring in lunch too, but the members said "no thanks." They wanted this to be about more than just another free lunch.

"For me it's a place to go and escape," said Donald, a member.

"And to question things," said Betsey, another member.

"Yeah, I feel more sophisticated," said Jamie, a member, laughing.

Unlike the others, Jamie, who lives in a rooming house, says he never used to be a reader. His addictions were the priority.

"I picked up the first book and started reading it and I couldn't put it down," Jamie said.

Addicted still, only now, to literature.

"If I keep reading, and keeping my mind occupied, I'm less likely to hurt myself in life," Jamie said.

Testimonials like that are now inspiring other people in other cities, even other countries, to start putting together their own homeless book clubs.

And as for the homeless man who started it all - Rob - turns out, the only reason he couldn’t get subsidized housing was because he had an unresolved moving violation on his record. Fortunately, he knows a good lawyer.

Peter was able to clear up that traffic ticket, which is why tonight Rob is no longer on the streets. He's housed and working as a church custodian.

Be The Change:
Look out for a hidden connection in your own life and deepen it.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Shoulda, woulda, coulda by Pam Thomas

Shoulda, woulda, coulda by Pam Thomas

"I should ..."
"I would have ..."
"I could have ..."

Does the beginning of those three sentences sound familiar? Let’s flesh them out a bit more in case you don't recognize them.

"I should lose weight."
"I would have been happier if I had been more successful in my last job."
"I could have done a better job if she hadn’t distracted me and made me angry."

What do you think now? Kinda familiar like an old pair of shoes two sizes too small?

Not to worry, you aren’t alone. We all shoulda, woulda, coulda all over ourselves particularly when it comes to goals, dreams, and intentions. Here’s the good news, when it comes to goals, dreams and intentions, believe it or not, the shoulda, woulda, couldas serve a valuable purpose; they are great little indicators as to how important what we are trying to achieve is to us personally.

Yep, that's right, they are our own little pocket gauges but sadly we don't use them as such. We often use them as the proverbial 2x4 upside the head. OUCH! A means to make us feel wronged or worse, feel like failures.

So I'd like to ask you to do me a HUGE favor right here, right now (it's a three part favor, by the way). The first part of the favor is to step away from the 2x4, put it away, shred it in the wood shredder, burn it on a bonfire. Do whatever you need to do, just get rid of it. The next thing is that you become aware of your shoulda, woulda, coulda vernacular. And the last part of the favor is, if you are shoulda, woulda, coulda-ing all over yourself, please ask yourself one of the following questions;

- "On a scale of 1-10 (one being a low score) how important is this goal, dream or intention to me?"
If your response is a 5 or less, please be honest with yourself, how likely are you to carry out whatever it is you are shoulda, woulda, coulda-ing yourself over? Things that score low on the importance scale also score low on the priority scale and are more likely to be placed on the backburner, in the back of the closet, or stuffed in the back of our minds.

- "Is this something I wish to do or something someone said I should do?"
Let's face it, when we are trying to accomplish a goal that is someone else's and not our own, we are less likely to see it through to fruition. Why? Because it's not ours. It is not in alignment with who we are and our core values.

- "How will this serve me in being my best self?"
If your answer is, “It won't" then please reconsider your reasoning for trying to take action on a goal, dream, or intention that will not serve you.

Here is to using the shoulda, woulda, couldas as success tools, (as opposed to the opposite) until you don't need them anymore.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

You are beautiful !! by Pam Thomas

You are beautiful!! by Pam Thomas

What worth has beauty if it is not seen?
- Italian Proverb

There is not one person on this planet who does not possess a great beauty. We all have the capacity to share and show our beauty; sometimes we choose to hide it away. Sometimes we mask it in fear that our beauty is not good enough or as wonderful as someone else.

When we compare ourselves to others, when we self deprecate, when we don’t share our true amazing selves, we are depreciating our own beauty, devaluing its worth and our own. We are depriving ourselves of the chance to share something really incredible with the world and in turn we are depriving ourselves of opportunities for growth and potentials.

My friends, it does not matter if you are bone thin, overweight, have a small nose or a big nose, hips that are too small or too big, you are beautiful. You possess a beauty that no one else does and that makes you incredible and unique.

Come out from hiding, stop the self deprecation, cease the comparisons. When you feel the urge to do any of the things mentioned, please stop yourself and please find one positive thing about YOU that you can share with the world in that very moment. Maybe you have a killer smile, so stop and smile at someone. Maybe you give incredible hugs, so stop and hug someone. Maybe you have a beautiful giving heart, so share some love with someone. Embrace your beauty, you will be utterly surprised at what happens when you do.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Subject: Trip to Rome

Subject: Trip to Rome

Here is something to think about when negative people are doing their best to rain on your parade. Remember this story the next time someone who knows nothing (and cares less) tries to make your life miserable...

A woman was at her hairdresser's getting her hair styled for a trip to Rome with her husband. She mentioned the trip to the hairdresser, who responded: "Rome? Why would anyone want to go there? It's crowded and dirty. You're crazy to go to Rome. So, how are you getting there?"

"We're taking Continental," was the reply. "We got a great rate!"

"Continental?" exclaimed the hairdresser." That's a terrible airline. Their planes are old, their flight attendants are ugly, and they're always late. So, where are you staying in Rome?"

"We'll be at this exclusive little place over on Rome's Tiber River called Teste."

"Don't go any further. I know that place. Everybody thinks its gonna be something special and exclusive, but it's really a dump."

"We're going to go to see the Vatican and maybe get to see the Pope."

"That's rich," laughed the hairdresser. You and a million other people trying to see him. He'll look the size of an ant. Boy, good luck on this lousy trip of yours. You're going to need it."

A month later, the woman again came in for a hairdo. The hairdresser asked her about her trip to Rome.

"It was wonderful," explained the woman, "not only were we on time in one of Continental's brand new planes, but it was overbooked, and they bumped us up to first class. The food and wine were wonderful, and I had a handsome 28-year-old steward who waited on me hand and foot.

And the hotel was great! They'd just finished a $5 million remodeling job, and now it's a jewel, the finest hotel in the city.

They, too, were overbooked, so they apologized and gave us their owner's suite at no extra charge!"

"Well," muttered the hairdresser, "that's all well and good, but I know you didn't get to see the Pope."

"Actually, we were quite lucky, because as we toured the Vatican, a Swiss Guard tapped me on the shoulder, and explained that the Pope likes to meet some of the visitors, and if I'd be so kind as to step into his private room and wait, the Pope would personally greet me. Sure enough, five minutes later, the Pope walked through the door and shook my hand! I knelt down and he spoke a few words to me."

"Oh, really! What'd he say?"

He said: "Who messed up your hair?"

author unknown

Listening to your inner guidance by Christy Whitman

Listening to your inner guidance
by Christy Whitman

There are so many opinions of what is right and wrong. There are so many people that want to tell you how to do something. The only way you will know if something is right for you is to listen to your own inner guidance. How do you know you are in alignment with your own inner guidance? You feel good.

As Dr. Wayne Dyer has said (and I paraphrase) "To feel good is to feel God. Good and God are interchangeable."

When you are feeling good about a decision, that is the right decision for you.

When you feel good about an action to take, that is the right action for you.

We need to get back to trusting ourselves, and the connection that we have with our inner being. How do we build trust? We practice. Like with anything the more you do something, the more confidence you have in your ability. The more you practice listening to your intuition the better you will be at recognizing it and the more you will trust it.

How do you get in touch with that inner guidance? There are many ways. I find that meditation helps me connect instantaneously. Just find a space of silence and intend to connect will do wonders.

..... Spend some time in nature. Nature has a very healing effect on the mind, body and spirit. Just watching the leaves blow in the wind, or waves crashing on a beach can be a spiritual experience.

Also, when you hear a voice inside your own mind give you a direction to go in, listen to it. For example, if you hear that inner voice tell you to charge your cell phone, charge it. If it tells you to take a different road home, take it. There have been so many times when I heard this voice and didn't do what it said and I regretted it later. Once it told me to charge my phone and I didn't listen, later that day I received an important phone call and I did not have enough batteries. The call cut off and I lost out on an opportunity. I started to listen and each and every time I hear that voice (no matter how strange it may sound) I do what it says. It always works out in my favor. That is how you build trust.

What is trust? Trust is opening your heart, believing in yourself and in the abundance of the universe. It is knowing that the universe is loving, friendly, and supports your higher good. Trust is knowing that you are part of the process of creating, and believing in your ability to draw to you want to want.

What does trust mean? To Rely Upon Spirit Totally

Go within and connect with your Infinite Wisdom. Ask your inner guidance for direction in your life. Follow that guidance as long as it feels good to you. Believe that everything will work out the way you want it to. What you believe will ultimately turn into your reality. If you believe that the universe is always supporting you then that is what you will experience. If however, you believe that the world is against you, you will also experience that.

Only you and your inner guidance know what is right for you. When you are in alignment with this inner guidance you are in a pure positive state. By the Law of Attraction positive life experiences will then be reflected back to you.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

The Gift of Anger By Cheryl Richardson

The Gift of Anger By Cheryl Richardson

Almost every day I post an affirmation on my Facebook Fan Page to support visitors in staying on track with living awake and authentic lives. I enjoy the real time, interactive nature of Facebook and I love that I can personally connect with friends from around the globe. You can join us by visiting:

This week, one affirmation in particular, raised a few questions. My post read:

"I allow myself to embrace my power by fully expressing my anger in healthy and productive ways."

Several people had questions about "healthy and productive ways" to express their anger. As I read through the posts, I was reminded of one of the first times I learned how to do just that. And in doing so, connected with the power hidden beneath my rage. Here's what happened:

In 1991, my friend Lucy died of cancer. She was 83 years old and for three months we walked the path of completing her journey together. It was a life-altering experience for me having never been that close to death and dying. And I was blessed to be with her when she took her last breath.

For several months after her passing I was pretty busy. As the executor of her estate, I was charged with the responsibility of getting her home ready to be sold. It was an emotionally turbulent time. As is often the case when we experience a major life crisis, the floor beneath my feet started to shift and life as I'd known it began to change dramatically. A five year relationship ended. I was forced to leave my apartment. And my work started to move in a whole new direction. During this period there were lots of tears, frustration, and exhaustion.

One day, as my friend Bill and I were going through Lucy's house boxing up her belongings, he listened patiently as I cried and complained about losing my friend and the subsequent uprooting of my life. After listening to me for more than an hour, he asked me to follow him to the basement. Once there, he showed me a large box of light bulbs he had gathered in a corner of the room. "I'm going upstairs" Bill said, "and I'm going to turn up the stereo full blast. When I do, I want you to empty this box, one by one, into the corner of this room." I looked at him as if he were crazy. "And as you smash each lightbulb I want you to scream and yell as loud as you can to get the pent up rage out of your system. Don't come up until all the bulbs are gone."

As Bill climbed the basement stairs, I stood looking at the box. "Was I really that angry?" I thought. I didn't think so. But, honoring his request, as soon as I heard the music kick in I picked up the first light bulb and smashed it in the corner. It made a loud, popping sound. Then, I picked up another and let it rip. By the third lightbulb I was screaming like a mad woman desperately grabbing for the next bulb. By the time I emptied the box, something significant had shifted inside me. I felt both exhausted and exhilarated. I ran up the basement stairs looking for more glass :).

That day taught me about a safe and productive way of expressing anger. Until that time, I had done things like written rage-filled letters that I never sent, or talked about my anger with friends. While these methods were helpful, they never left me feeling empowered the way moving my body did. I suddenly understood that using my intellect to express anger wasn't enough. I needed to physically get the anger up and out of my body to actually feel the power hidden beneath. For days after that experience in the basement I felt lighter, emotionally stronger, and better able to face the job before me.

Since that day, I've thrown light bulbs in my own basement, taken a kick-boxing class when I needed to vent, moved furniture around in my family room so I'd have the space to dance my anger out, or visited a batting cage with Michael to smack baseballs.

There is enormous power hidden beneath your unexpressed anger. Don't use your head to get it out. Use your body instead. Check out this week's "Take Action Challenge" for safe and healthy ideas.

Take Action Challenge

If you have hidden anger or rage (who doesn't?), then find a physical outlet.

Here are some ideas:

Visit a driving range and hit golf balls.

Take a spin class and ride your way to freedom.

Kick a soccer ball around your yard.

Crank up the music at home and scream at the top of your lungs while pounding the sofa.

List your frustrations on a bunch of rocks and throw them into a lake one by one.

As you move, feel the rageful energy leaving your body. Then, wait for the power to emerge. It's there. It's always been there. It's just waiting for you to let it out.

A bumper sticker philosophy by - Judy Campbell

A bumper sticker philosophy by - Judy Campbell

"If anything can go well, it will"

The quote above is on a bumper sticker created by Gene Whitford, The bumper sticker is available at various locations in Orlando, I picked mine up from the Avalon bookstore, Gene says they are also available at Leaves and Roots, and the Spiral Circle. The point of view presented on this bumper sticker is far more optimistic than another one we have all seen. According to the law of attraction the energy we put out into the universe creates our experience. So who would want to drive around attracting s#*! happening?

Now there are many whom are skeptical of the whole philosophy of we create our own reality or the law of attraction. This is particularly true when situations do not turn out the way we would like. In circumstances that we label as "bad', we're pretty quick to absolve ourselves of any part in the outcome, we are equally quick to blame God though. In situations with a favorable outcome we're sure it's because of our genius or our personal worthiness. For some reason human beings seem to believe God makes mistakes, and not the other way around, which would mean we the humans are mistaken. If we create our lives based upon our use or misuse of Universal energy, it would be in our best interests to travel in an attitude of positive energy.

Wayne Dyer in his new book and PBS feature, Excuses Begone!, makes the point that unless we are 100% sure of something being true, about ourselves or life, then perhaps we would be better served by erring on the side of a thought or idea that will take us where we want to go. Energy is flowing around us... to us...through us. Our experiences are determined by how much we allow this Universal energy to flow into our lives unimpeded. Abraham-Hicks calls this "The Art of Allowing", A Course in Miracles says "you can wait, delay , paralyze yourself, or reduce your creativity almost to nothing. But you cannot abolish it."

Gene Whitford says that when he came up with this slogan for a bumper sticker, shortly thereafter, if not that same day, he received money from a trust fund. Coincidence... maybe , but once again are you 100% certain? In either case the power of decision is our own. As we venture out into the world, in whatever vehicle (physically or spiritually), we travel in and if we wish to carry a slogan along the way, why not choose one with positive energy because you know,

"If anything can go well, it will"

Saturday, August 1, 2009

On “Growing Wings” by Martha Beck, from Oprah, January 2004 The Phases of Human Metamorphosis

On “Growing Wings” by Martha Beck, from Oprah, January 2004

The Phases of Human Metamorphosis

I used to assume caterpillars became butterflies by weaving cocoons and then sitting inside growing legs and wings and so on. I was wrong. In fact, the first thing caterpillars do in the cocoon is shed their skin, leaving a soft rubbery chrysalis. If you were to look inside the cocoon early on, you’d find nothing but a puddle of glop. But in the glop are DNA-coded instructions for transformation to the butterfly, the angel of the dead caterpillar.

Humans do such transitions too – not physically but psychologically. All of us will experience metamorphosis several times during our lives, exchanging one identity for another. Even after you’re all grown up, your identity isn’t fixed. You may switch careers, change marital status, become a parent, get sick, win the lottery. I don’t know if this is stressful for caterpillars, but for humans this can be hell on wheels. The best way to minimize trauma is to understand the process. Here are the four phases.

Phase One – Dissolving

The first phase is the scariest, especially because we aren’t taught to expect it. It’s the time we lose our identity and are left temporarily formless. Sometimes it is just a “blip” and at others we run into a welter of “dissolving” experiences. You’ll get through it; you won’t have a choice. It’s scary though. Many so-called primitive cultures have rituals designed to teach the art of dissolution. They obscure faces with paint or ash, take names away, or are sent to spend time in wilderness or dark womblike enclosures. We don’t have such traditions, so when we’re dissolving we may get hysterical, fight our feelings, try to recapture our former lives, or jump immediately toward some new status quo. These measures actually slow down Phase One and make it more painful. Here are 4 strategies that work better:

~ Live for one day (or ten minutes) at a time. Focus on the now.
~ “Cocoon” by caring for yourself in physical, immediate ways.
~ Talk to others who’ve metamorphosized – a wise relative, friend, or therapist
~ Let yourself grieve; cycle through denial, anger sadness, acceptance many times.

Dissolving isn’t something you do; it’s something that happens to you. The closest you’ll come to controlling it is relaxing and trusting the process.

Phase Two – Imagining

Phase two can be as welcome as rain after a drought. This is when the part of you that knows your destiny, the imago in your psyche, will begin giving you instructions about how to reorganize the remnants of your old identity into something altogether different. You’ll know you’re beginning when your mind’s eye starts seeing images of the life you are about to create. They can’t be forced, and they are never what you expect, they just happen. You’re becoming a new person and you’ll develop traits and interests your old self didn’t have. You may feel like changing your clothing style or redecorating your space – the old no longer fits. You begin to reorder your outer situation to reflect your inner rebirth. Here are some ways you might want to respond:

~ Cut out magazine pictures that appeal, or draw/sketch/list/write something.
~ Let yourself daydream. Your job is to try out imaginary scenarios until you have a clear picture of your goals and desires. Save time, effort, and grief by doing this in your head before you attempt it in the real world.

Phase Two is about images; making them up, making them clear, making them possible. Writing down both dreams and schemes to create them leads to an action impulse.

Phase Three – Reforming

The itch to make dreams come true signals Phase Three, the implementation stage. You take steps like submitting work or inviting others. You’ll feel motivated to do real, physical things to build a new life. And then… (drum roll please)… you’ll fail. Repeatedly. Through my own experience and that of hundreds of clients, I’ve never seen a significant scheme succeed on the first try. Inevitably there are problems you didn’t expect. Phase three demands not the starry eyes that are so useful in phase Two, but the ingenuity of Thomas Edison and the tenacity of a pit bull. So:

~ Expect things to go wrong and to keep working through lack of success.
~ Be willing to start over. You’ll return briefly to Phase One feeling lost and confused, but this is an opportunity to release some of the illusions that created hitches in your plan.
~ Revisit Phase Two to include the truths you’ve learned.
~ Persist. Keep de-bugging and re-implementing your improved plans.

If you’ve followed all the steps above, your plans will eventually work.

Phase Four - Flying

Phase Four is like crawling out of your cocoon and waiting for your wings to dry and expand. It’s the payoff, when your identity is fully formed and able to fly. The following strategies can help you optimize this delightful situation. They are about fine-tuning:

~ Enjoy! You’ve just negotiated a scary and dramatic transformation. Savor your new identity and focus on gratitude for your success.
~ Make small improvements, little techniques for less stress, more pleasure.
~ Know that another change is just around the bend.

Don‘t attribute your happiness to your new identity; security lies in knowing how to deal with metamorphosis whenever it occurs. Phase Four may last for days or decades.

As the Buddhist Nun Pema Chodron writes, “We are always in transition… If you can just relax with that, you’ll have no problem.” At times you may feel it’s the end of the world, but remember that dissolution of the caterpillar leads to the butterfly.