What Would They Say?

If today, you were sitting with the two most important people in your life (living or dead) in a quiet, peaceful location, away from the busyness of life having a deep conversation, what would you ask them? Is there something important, something personal you would like to know?

If you asked them ” How do you think I am doing?” What would they say?

” You are doing great, just not trusting yourself enough”.

“go for it, you are on the right track and something great is awaiting you”

“You need to be more determined. more committed. less frivolous. …”

” You know I love you, now love yourself”.

I am not sure who you would share this time with or what they might say in response to your questions but I know that the exercise is worth doing. Take 15 minutes, right now and find a quiet spot. Get comfortable (sitting or standing), take a deep breath and allow yourself to go to a safe, special place. Feel the breeze on your face, the sensations around you. Let the image sink in. When you are settled with your two important people, ask your questions and listen for their answers.

Be patient and respectful. The responses are important for you to hear. After fifteen minutes, make some notes and at least one commitment.

Make Today Remarkable, because you are remarkable,

B

DECISION MAKING

Thanks to Michelle Hanton for a great post on making decisions.

Michelle Hanton OAM

We make decisions every day of our life from the moment we wake up each morning. Some are small ones; I’ll just lay here for another 5 minutes, one cup of coffee or two, a piece of toast or cereal? Simple, easy decision we make without much thought at all. We make all these decisions based on what we feel like at that given moment in time.

When it comes to making bigger decisions, we often tend to face a huge dilemma. We become decidedly more indecisive, although perhaps a better word to use here would be cautious. We often spend ages considering and weighing up all the facts. We might make lots of columns with pros and cons. Go through a myriad of for and against arguments before we feel in a position to be able to actually make a decision.

Why is this? Why don’t we make a…

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Hedonic Treadmill

The hedonic treadmill theory explains the oft-held observation that rich people are no happier than poor people, and that those with severe money problems are sometimes quite happy. The theory supports the argument that money does not buy happiness and that the pursuit of money as a way to reach this goal is futile. Good and bad fortunes may temporarily affect how happy a person is, but most people will end up back at their normal level of happiness. ~ Investopidia

treadmill

The phrase hedonic treadmill appeared in my reading this weekend and had me thinking about the incessant race for more. After a couple of days, I realize that the treadmill is a panacea that both calms and creates desire. There is a momentary satisfaction when we acquire another something/anything and then we are spinning the hamster wheel to get the next something/anything. I can chase stuff and my own temporary satisfaction – books pile up and then I ‘need’ another and reading it makes another necessary.

If happiness is a goal and pursuit of happiness somehow a right wouldn’t we have developed a better understanding of where it resides and how to achieve it and retain it?

Make Today Remarkable, by being happy without a treadmill,

B

Stuff I Don’t Understand

A long list, for sure but I will try make it shorter. Under the Heading Stuff I Don’t Understand are two categories – How it Works and I Don’t Get It.

How it Works

This list is so big that I will only include the highest lights.

Cell phones, GSP, zippers, airplanes, Caramilk bars, tv, radio, Google, microwaves, most things medical, democracy, most things scientific…

I Don’t Get It

Hatred, Selfishness, Discrimination, Martyrs, Using social media to spout vitriol, Destroying your reputation, Reality tv, MMA, fashion shows, expensive cars, big houses …

Feeling confused today – going for a run to clear my head.

What are You Interested In?

My interests are reading, running, writing, sports, politics … I am interested in making memories, sharing a life, making a difference, speaking honestly and living authentically. Having interests fills up our life while being interested gives meaning to our life.

The higher order stuff makes the lower order stuff real and possible. The being interested stuff is where we place a/our commitment. Some days I am really great at those things and other days I suck. Thinking about them, making them real, and acting on them helps sort out the moment to moment. When I remember that I am interested in making memories, it changes the words and how I say them when I am with my grandkids. If I am interested in living authentically it makes taking difficult or unpopular action easier. I work hard every day to live happily ever after in my big relationship because I am interested in sharing a life.

Figuring out what the higher order stuff is takes some time but maybe That’s what the extra hours of light are for during the summer.

Make Today Remarkable,

B

Running Through Ideas

A stream of consciousness, generative and meandering, flows through my head when I run. Not in the first 7 minutes when all my brain thinks about is the imagined aches, the tightness in my shoulders or any number of other reasons to turn around an go home. In the beginning,  my brain doesn’t like it when I run and tries to game me into stopping. I keep going because the tricks aren’t really original. I have heard the Excuses before. I push trough, anticipating the big shift. I never actually experience the shift but rather find myself on the other side of the game. I am suddenly aware that my brain is clicking with every stride, shifting with each breath, moving with each football. I race from idea to conclusion to loosely associated connection and loop again. For 30 minutes, 40 minutes, 60, 70 I relish the race; inhaling deep and turning a into b. In the moment, I am better than before- fitter, smarter, happier.  This is the reward. I don’t know what others call the zone. I always run alone because I don’t want to corrupt the rhythm. When I race, I never get to the place, my brain is focused on the heels in front of me and the next orange flag.

I would love to say that my best ideas come when running alone – they do but I don’t remember them. I bring home glimmers of greatness but not the fully formed stream that 7 or 8krolls out. I know that the process is healthy for me; my heart, my head, my soul and in special moments some as yet unimagined, not fully formed, solution just appears at the edge of my thought and I recognize it, however unfamiliar, as a great gift from a recess in my racing mind.

Make Today Remarkable, by pushing past the Excuse,

B

Mystery

I love magic and don’t want to know how it is done. I don’t need to have all the loose ends tied up in a great movie or remarkable book. My faith is based in faith. I have found a comfortable (for me) balance between certainty and uncertainty. I try to embrace mystery with gusto.

Not everything is understandable. We don’t need to explain everything. Being assured can close my mind to other possibilities. Perception shapes truth and everything is a placebo. If you believe because of faith or fact, the reality, for you, is the same.

I can hear my critics saying ” what a rube” and I am now okay with that label. My response would be a paraphrase ” you get what you believe not just what you measure”. Whether the theory or the facts are ‘true’ rests in if we have faith in it. It can be true today and not true tomorrow based on either fact or feeling or both.

I choose to believe what I believe. There is a God who is still interested in us. We are all far more capable than we are told. I can make a difference. The world is abundant but the distribution is corrupt. We have long held beliefs in our economics, science, religion that need to be reworked. Love is the answer but not unconditionally.

Make Today Remarkable, in mystery,

B

Get off Your Hands

Well really, get off your butt. Do something today that you haven’t done before. Think it, write it down, do it, observe it, adapt it or in two steps Just Do It and then Just Do It again (differently if necessary).

Be inspired by your circumstances, encouraged by your community, provoked by your environment and make a difference in your life, today. Inaction is a choice that is always complicit with the status quo. Mediocrity is sown in routine, nurtured in repetition and blossoms in mundane and becomes rooted in the unremarkable. It doesn’t have to be that way.

Even the smallest interruption can stunt mediocrity’s growth. A subtle change in routine can shift the direction towards improvement. A pattern of incremental shifts can move to the unimagined. In this time, in this place, with all that we are we should expect the miraculous. It is waiting for all of us to get off our butts and chase it down.

Make Today Remarkable, by doing something remarkable,

B

 

Internal Censors

The world tells us what is acceptable. What we can say is a function of how much politics (small p) has corrupted the topic or how little caring the audience is feeling. Double standards and status definitions inhibit, prohibit or allow comments to range from obscure to offensive. People pleasing or people pestering position propositions.

censor

For many folks the internal censor alarm is set way too high and they say everything that enters their head without consideration for how it makes them look or how it might make someone else feel. For others the switch seems so sensitive as to preclude them from saying anything at all.

Finding a rich balance of meaningful and respectful conversation is difficult. I have had advice that I should only speak my mind if I would say it to my grandmother. My grandma was a firebrand activist with a caring heart and firm convictions so that might work for me but what if she had been a tea teetotaler, or milk toast and timid?

Taking a chance has worked for me. Saying something that is troubling me has lead to great learning or remarkable discussions. Either I found the line of offense and apologized or moved the line and found an unimagined new idea. I once started a presentation with ” I would like to apologize for any offense I may cause but that wouldn’t be true”. The statement got the audience’s attention but some didn’t hear anything else I said. It also wasn’t true for while I want to provoke, encourage, inspire I really don’t want to offend.

make Today Remarkable, by walking on bothe sides of the line,

B

Focus on Your Strengths

Remarkable people use their strengths to strengthen others. They do this by knowing where they are gifted and becoming stronger in those areas. Being well rounded is helpful, until you are about 20 years old and then like a tennis ball being round only assists the one with the racket.

You have been given skills and gifts that are specific to you and are necessary for  the grand plan. As we all use our strengths to lift up those around us, the world becomes better, more beautiful, and complete.  Thomas Jefferson ran his 1804 campaign on this theme; I believe every American, given the opportunity and circumstances will take care of himself, her family, and their community. I believe that is possible for all of us. If I believe that about people then it is the opportunity and circumstances that are wrong. We spend too much time trying to be something we aren’t, too much time trying to work against our disposition and skills, too much time trying to be average at things that we will never be excellent at. Focus on your strengths, build on your gifts, acquire mastery at the stuff you were meant to and then use all of that to improve the lives of those around you. The world will be a better place and you will be better for it.

Make Today Remarkable, by being remarkable,

B