“ The greatest waste in the world is the difference between what we are and what we could become. ”
~ Ben Herbster
We are what we are, and we are where we are in life because of all the actions we have taken and choices we have made up to this point. If you’re not happy with where you are now and who are you now in life, then initiate a change in your life for the better. To change a pattern or habit you’re not happy with and convert it into something positive, you need to imagine your day being just the way you wanted it to be and relishing the moment you’re in during this time. You can do it during a quiet time — while you’re about to sleep, or when you just wake up, or during lunchtime, or while on a break. It should be a meditative experience so you can completely feel the effects of the positive thinking permeate into your mind and soul. Do this everyday and eventually you will see improvements in your life to some extent. Just be sure and record the mistakes that you made during that day so that you don’t do them again, or do them differently so the outcome is beneficial for you. It’s all about relating your experiences each day to the ones that you want to be living. Have fun making changes for the better in your life and becoming the person you want to be!
“He who finds diamonds must grapple in mud and mire because diamonds are not found in polished stones. They are made.”
~ Henry B. Wilson
A scattering of “brilliant” cut diamonds.
To become something that is brilliant from every angle, from within and without, sometimes you must live a life in the dirtiest place on earth. This place is not a happy place nor is it a comfortable place, yet it is the only place that can crush you into someone that is invincible, beautiful, resilient, and admired. It’s a place that no one would ever choose for themselves to exist in. Living there is difficult, depressing, sad, dark, and often lonely. But if one can endure the elements long enough that this place continually throws at you, then you will surely be something much greater than what you were before you entered. Great people are not born, they are made — just like a stone that over time and through excruciating painful forces becomes a polished gem that is the most cherished of all. To find these kinds of people (the gems), you must look in places that are not so inviting or even easy to find. I know this, because I am one of those people who have endured this place that I speak of, and I am proud to say that I have become a better person from every angle, from within and without, and hopefully for all time.
Because I enjoyed this story so much, I wanted to share it with you. It was originally posted by Stuart at: http://thechangeyourlifeblog.wordpress.com/2013/04/22/the-comfort-riches-parable/
A poor man reached middle age without becoming the success he envisioned as a young man. He decided early the next morning he would ask a rich friend of his what the secret of success was.
The rich friend pointed down a rough path near the edge of town and said walk down that path and you will find the answer. Trusting his friend, the poor man set off down that rough path.
He walked and walked in the hot sun, on and on until he had blisters on his heels. The path twisted this way then that through some low hills, never giving him a good view of how far there was to go. The path was so rough he lost his footing a few times, but he kept on going.
As he turned a bend he saw a sign on the side of the path. As he drew nearer he saw that it said: ‘Not far to go now.’ Encouraged, he continued walking.
A little further he saw another sign that read: ‘Keep going.’ He felt a renewed sense of energy and determination even though he was hot and exhausted.
A little while later he came upon a third sign saying: ‘Nearly there.’ A little stream ran alongside and he decided to take some refreshment before continuing.
After many more hours he sat down for a rest. He was in real discomfort and his ehthusiasm was beginning to wane. Sign after sign had urged him onwards but still he could not see the answer to success. ‘My so called friend has played a joke on me.’ he thought. The answer is not down this path. There’s only discomfort, frustration and endless false promises down this path.
At that moment he decided to head back home and give his rich friend a piece of his mind for making him look like a fool.
Meanwhile, the rich man was sitting on the porch of his beautiful country home waiting for his friend to arrive. A cool glass of lemonade in his hand and an expectant smile on his face.
He waited and waited, until eventually the sun started going down. Disappointed, he walked across the lawn and up to the gate of his house. He opened it and walked down the rough path that ran near a little stream. He stopped at the sign he had erected there. The sign read: ‘You’re here.’
He gazed one last time down the long and winding path but there was no sign of his friend.
“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated failures. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.“
~ Calvin Coolidge
To speak or not to speak? This is the question.
Justice Louis Brandeis, in his compelling opinion nearly seventy-five years ago in the criminal syndication case of Whitney v. California, in which he articulated the premise of what today is known as the “Doctrine of Counterspeech.” Here is a brief excerpt from his opinion (at the URL below):
“When it came to expression that was perceived by some to be dangerous, threatening, or harmful, Brandeis famously wrote, “If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence.”
Brigham Young University’s 2000 Law Review (archives) titled “Counterspeech 2000: A New Look at the Old Remedy for “Bad” Speech” by Robert D. Richards and Clay Calvert. The article has a lot of interesting points worth considering. Tell us what you think and say what you will, while we all get educated from your speech.
Merry Christmas everyone! Today is Christmas, a time for people to be with their families and dear friends as they relish the time together on this day of reverence and remembrance It’s also a time where we reflect on the year that is coming to a close and when we make promises to ourselves to make the next year better than the last. I encourage you to make the effort during this most cherished time of the year to be a better person who makes a difference in other people’s lives. To be a person who takes better care of them self and cares for the ones you love just as much as you care for yourself. And mostly to become a person who lives a life beyond reproach and encourages others to live their life with zest and zeal, kindness, joy, and vigor.
Here is something to think about as you ponder what you can do to change your life for the better. My advice to you is to live and love in the NOW. The truth is found in the moment NOW and is soon forgotten in the mad dash for NEXT… planning, hoping, worrying, dreaming, leaving the truth unnoticed when it is right NOW to be had in all its glory and wonder.
“Adversity has the effect of eliciting talents which, in prosperous circumstances, would have lain dormant.”
~ Horace (65-8 BC) Roman Poet
When you are at your worst emotionally and physically, you tend to find something that has been hidden deep inside you that you never knew you had — the wherewithal to work your way through the pain you are so burdened by. Like anything that has a luster to it, the process of getting that shine that is so appealing requires many years of wear and tear, and pain and suffering. So, always remember that when you’re experiencing discomfort, agony, sorrow, loneliness, displeasure and turmoil, just realize that you are getting closer to discovering the treasure that lies within you. Once found, the sparkle and awe that people now see in you will bring so much pleasure, strength, hope, and appeal to not only yourself but to those who can see the treasure within you. Have you found the treasure within you yet?
“When we are motivated by goals that have deep meaning, by dreams that need completion, by pure love that needs expressing, then we truly live life.”
~ Greg Anderson
Find a reason to live and you will accomplish more than you could of ever imagined. Following are a couple habits you can incorporate into your life to begin living a more meaningful life:
Don’t Believe Your Thoughts
Most people believed their thoughts are the definitive truth about reality. If you think it, it must be the way it is. After serious consideration, you will realize that often you thoughts are completely wrong or just one perspective on truth. It is always good to find evidence to support the opposite of your thoughts, especially negative and limiting thoughts.
Live Through Your Values
Your core values should be the blueprint for everything else in your life. Until you make the effort to understand what your core values are and how to make them central in your life, you won’t give your values a lot of thought. But if your life is aligned with your values, then you have a purpose and guide for every decision and action.
Special thanks to Tim Coffey for use of his illustration.
“Dedication is simply reminding yourself what you want. Then paying the price to get it… Every day.”
~ John F. Groom
Remembering what you’re dedicated to in life is vital to your success in reaching goals. We all must have something in our hearts and minds that gives us a little more patience, strength, endurance, kindness and wisdom so that we can reach the mark we have set for ourselves. Endurance comes from exercising your mind and your body. All you have to do is get up and start moving. Exercise helps you maintain your weight, it improves your cardiovascular health, strengthens the bones and increases endorphins in the body–hormones that give us energy, make us happier and help ward off stress and disease. If you don’t use the endorphins, you lose them. So, get active and you’ll find that you do better and live longer. Remind yourself of this everyday and you’ll be very glad you did.
Special thanks to Tim Coffey for use of his illustration.
“He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.”
~ Friedrich Nietzsche
As long as we have a reason to live, then we can live through anything. This is the secret to a life that is full of zeal, power, energy, and influence. People who do great things in life overcome any and all obstacles they encounter because they keep their eyes focused on the thing(s) that help them endure to the end. Endurance is one of the most difficult disciplines to achieve, but victory comes to the one who can endure. One way you can obtain the energy and passion for life is to look at life differently than you have done in the past. Attitude is everything when it comes to the things you encounter in life, so if you can change the way you view circumstances, then you just might find that living is more enjoyable than ever before. Always strive to find a positive reason to live and you will achieve what you want from your life. There are thousands of reasons to live, all you have to do is look for them.
A New Perspective in Life
Special thanks to Tim Coffey for use of his illustration.
Today is my birthday. All I want for my special day today is to one day be included in the list below of famous Pisceans (people born under the Pisces astrological star) before I leave this world. To be in this list of famous and inspiring individuals would be both an honor and a dream come true. Ironically, many of these people are my favorites in their respective fields. Ex: Steve Jobs and Michael Dell (entrepreneurs), Albert Einstein and Joseph Pulitzer (visionaries), George Harrison, Eric Clapton, Aretha Franklin and Elton John (musicians), Michaelangelo (artists), George Washington and Constantine the Great (leaders/statesmen), Arthur Schopenhauer and Longfellow (writers/philosophers), Tony Robbins (speakers), Ansel Adams (photographers), Shaquille O’Neal and Mario Andretti (sports), and most all the actors listed below are among my favorites. I urge you to you look up what famous people were born under your astrological star sign and see if it inspires you. Even if you don’t believe in astrology, it’s quite interesting to see what other great people throughout history share your astrological sign.
PISCES IN POLITICS / WORLD LEADERS / SOCIETY FIGURES
Chelsea Clinton *
John F. Dulles
Czar Alexander III
Constantine the Great
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Cardinal Roger Mahoney *
Josh Groban *
Andrew Lloyd Weber
Sir Elton John
Nat “King” Cole
Jon Bon Jovi
PISCES ACTORS / WRITERS / DIRECTORS/TV PERSONALITIES
Robert Downey Jr.
Fred (Mr.) Rogers
Joan Bennet *
Joanne Woodward *
Benicio Del Toro
Buffalo Bill Cody
Jennifer Love Hewitt
Elizabeth Taylor *
William Demarest *
Freddie Prinze Jr.
William H. Macy
PISCES INNOVATORS & VISIONARIES
Alexander Graham Bell
PISCES PHILOSOPHERS, POETS, PLAYRIGHTS & WRITERS
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow *
Irwin Shaw *
Elizabeth B. Browning
Oliver Wendell Holmes
PISCES SPORTS FIGURES
Gene Sarazen *
James Worthy *
Raymond Berry *
Floyd Mayweather, Jr.
Dr. Julius Irving
* denotes those born on 2/27 which is my birth date.
“In the hopes of reaching the moon men fail to see the flowers that blossom at their feet.”
~ Albert Schweitzer
I am convinced that there are no “secrets” to happiness or success. As much as authors, publishers and our own minds would like to convince us that shortcuts exist, they do not. Living a successful life is pretty simple. You create a vision for the future, formulate a strategy and then work hard to achieve it. There are no shortcuts or secrets to this formula. Accepting this will get you much further down the path to happiness than anything else. So, choose to be happy and watch your world blossom into something beautiful.
Thanks to Tim Coffey for use of his illustration.
The creative impulses of man are always at war with the possessive impulses.
~ Van Wyck Brooks
Van Wyck Brooks
If you want to do amazing things in your life, then you’ll need to let go of some or most of the things that are holding you back from true creativity — your possessions. It’s impossible to move freely about if you’re burdened by the things that you’re attached to emotionally and physically. Let go of the stuff that doesn’t really matter in your life and focus on what does: your survival, health, friendships, spirituality and career. Letting go will get you going and doing things you never imagined you could ever do. Soar above the clouds and fix your eyes on what is most important in life: self-enlightenment. Once you find it, you will have found what no possession in life can offer. So, try being more creative with your impulses and less possessive with them and you’ll be on your way to greater achievements.
“When nothing is sure, everything is possible.”
~ Margaret Drabble (1939-) English Novelist
Not sure what you want in life or how to get it? Having a clean slate with regard to what is possible or not is the first step in finding what you want. Another very important element to getting what you want in life is a positive attitude that gives you the momentum each day to persistently progress. To do this, you need to treat everyday as if it is a party and you’re celebrating all the opportunities you have in life. Since everyday your alive is a gift for yourself and others, be sure and invite your friends and loved ones to your party everyday and celebrate life. Remember that it’s OK to get drunk on life and love because the hangover is healthy and heals whatever ails you. Party on!
Having a Ball
Special thanks to Tim Coffey for letting me use his illustration in this post. You can view his blog at: http://timcoffeyart.wordpress.com
“People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don’t believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can’t find them, make them.”
~ George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) Irish Playwright
George Bernard Shaw
There are always many ways to look at your current situation in life and wonder how it is you arrived there. You can blame your parents, your friends, your surroundings, your lack of good luck, etc. but when it comes right down to it, you really only have yourself to blame. Many people who had nothing in life have accomplished greats things and conversely, those who were born into wealth and excellent conditions have done very little with their lives. So, it all comes down to what you are willing to do no matter the condition and situation you’re in. If you look for ways to improve your situation in life then you will surely get to a better place. If you choose to feel sorry for yourself and not take responsibility for where you are in life, then you will remain in a state of limbo. You need to make something of yourself by choosing to be somebody who can accomplish wonderful things no matter how big or small. Once you decide WHO you want to be in life, not WHAT you want to be, then you’ll surely find circumstances you can be happy with.
“The worst thing that happens to you may be the best thing for you if you don’t let it get the best of you.”
~ Will Rogers
Think back in your life and try to remember the worst thing that ever happened to you. As you reflect on it today, can you say that is was the worst things in your life or did it turn out to be one of the best things? When something catastrophic occurs in our life, it typically remains a very ugly memory for a period of time. As time works on healing your scars from that incident, life sometimes works on turning that incident into something that makes our life better in some way. If time or life hasn’t worked out the pain or memories from that worst moment in your life yet, then give it some time and it just might turn out to be one of the best things that ever happened to you.
“Everything you want is on the other side of fear.”
~ Jack Canfield
“Be bold, and mighty forces will come to your aid.”
~ Basil King
What’s stopping you from getting what you want in your life? It’s probably yourself. It may not be your lack of effort, but your methodology. It may not be a lack of real desire, but your mental attitude. It may not be the amount of devotion you give, but a lack of persistence. In order to break through to the other side of life and find that peaceful place you dream of, you need to penetrate the wall of fear. Fear is a great motivator but peace, love, and harmony are greater motivators. Choose to be motivated by all the beautiful things that conquer fear. If you can be this bold, you’ll break through to the other side of life with the all the mighty forces you need to experience a slice of heaven on earth. Empower yourself each and every day and discover a new you that can DO! DO! DO!
Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Continuous effort, not strength or intelligence is the key to unlocking our potential.”
~ Liane Cardes
“Big jobs usually go to the men who prove their ability to outgrow small ones.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
It takes a lot more than being smart and flexing your muscles to get you what you want in life. It requires that you use all your wisdom, persistence, skills, patience and timing to achieve this task. In using all these abilities, you must outlast and overcome all the struggles that come your way as you rise to the top. You must prove to others and yourself that you can conquer the obstacles that you are faced with before you can elevate to the next level or position you seek for yourself. So, if you really want that promotion you’ve been jockeying for, or to lose weight, or get the attention of that person you’ve been admiring for ages, then you’re going to have to make the big step upward. Engage yourself in such a manner that you’re always moving forward no matter how slowly you move until you’ve reached your final destination. Then you can relish and cherish your accomplishment, but not for too long; you have other achievements to acquire.
“There is nothing so comfortable as money, but nothing so defiling if it be come by unworthily; nothing so comfortable, but nothing so noxious if the mind be allowed to dwell upon it constantly. If a man have enough, let him spend it freely. If he wants it, let him earn it honestly.”
This quote by an unknown author is one of my favorite quotes concerning the subject of money. It’s simple to understand and should make sense to most anyone who reads it. Following is my take on the quote’s meaning. In the pursuit of making money, don’t go crazy thinking about it or lose yourself while earning it. Spend it freely and as you wish but in such a way that you do good with it. If you can do this, you should be able to live a comfortable lifestyle if you’re able to control yourself from becoming a slave to money. And your overall physical and emotional state of health should improve as well. Don’t ever allow yourself to be corrupted by money and never allow yourself to be loved or admired only for your money. Remember that money can’t buy the most valuable items in life — health, time, friendship and love. Now that’s advice that won’t cost you a dime.
“Success is not counted by how high you have climbed but by how many people you brought with you.”
~ Wil Rose
“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”
Success is a lot of things to a lot of people but the one thing it isn’t is having lots of possessions and having no one to enjoy them with. If you don’t have others to enjoy all you have obtained or attained in life, then what good is it to have anything at all? Additionally, having friends who like you just because of what you own are not the kind of people you need in your life. Seek people who truly care for you no matter what you have or how successful you are. Finding them can be just as hard if not harder to obtain than any material possessions you may acquire. Close friends are the real treasure in life, so look for them like you would a chest of gold or fine jewels buried on some remote island. When you are happy doing what you like in life with people who can share in your happiness, then you are truly successful.
A Little Baggage
“If you wish to travel far and fast, travel light. Take off all your envies, jealousies, unforgiveness, selfishness, and fears.”
~ Glenn Clark
If you want to get somewhere in life fast, then you’ll need to carry little baggage with you. That means you can’t be toting all the emotional and psychological baggage that you’ve most likely been carrying around for most of your life. Shed your negative and bitter feelings, your hatred, your lack of confidence and any other emotional scars you may have acquired from your life’s travels. Once you have done this, you’ll see that you not only get around quicker but you will attract people to you. They will be amazed at how fast you can get from one place to another with such ease. But best of all, you will feel so much better by your ability to do so much more than you ever could before. Travel light and accomplish more. Beam me up Scottie!