If you are a father, have a father, know a father make sure to recognize your/their special contribution. Reach out a say ” You are special because …” Take a moment to reflect on the fathers that you have known who have passed away and remember their words of wisdom and acts of kindness. Send a note, make a call, do a drop in, and openly share your love.
I realize that for some this day is difficult , for an array of reasons but I invite you to join the celebration and acknowledge the best father you know, whether there is a bio-connection or not.
The first day of summer is another open door. Get outside regardless of the weather and take in the seasonal changes around you. Notice the new growth on trees, the color of the grass, the flowers in bloom, the special hue of the sky. Embrace summer with zeal and then let a bit of its laziness embrace you. Enjoy the length of the day – go for a run early or a late evening walk. Rest on a blanket and read from a good book. Summer and Sunday on the same day spells a siesta in the sun. Enjoy.
Make Today Remarkable, because it is,
Who you are speaks so loudly I can’t hear what you’re saying. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
I heard this quote in a presentation yesterday. It was almost a toss-away by the presenter but it struck me and I have been thinking about it since. Are good ideas being missed because of personality? Am I being ignored when I am provocative? When I say something, are my words colored by the character you see? Yes, No, Maybe.
I am wrestling with the impact of an identity that I have embraced and cultivated over the past 15 years and the possibility that I could be more impactful if I was less so. My brand gives me a dais and a venue but I wonder if I have reduced my potential audience by being slightly contrary and vocal.
When I ponder how I react to personalities, I am either drawn to them and therefore their words or their character repels me and I only hear what I need to hear to confirm my impression. Just yesterday, I was critical of an environmentalist who spoke of society with contempt and I am not sure if what I heard was exactly what he was saying because I ws turned off by his rancor.
Luckily for me, everything is a draft and so I have time to struggle and adapt, if I believe I need to soften my delivery if not the message.
Make Today Remarkable, by wrestling,
Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.
~Robert Louis Stevenson
I believe that we need good intentions and a great plan to succeed. My choices, my day, my life are represented by the impact that my intentions and plans have on me and the world around me. But the schedule of impact isn’t always mine. I would love to say something or do something and immediately see the reaction, the change or the result I was expecting (hoping for). It seems that the world doesn’t function on Bob time. I have seen instant responses to my words or actions but most of the time it takes way longer than I would want. I am waiting for ideas to blossom from messages I delivered years ago.
I have had people come back to me and say ” when I heard you say …, I was upset but I have thought about it over the past month and I think you have something there”. Others have come back with ” you are still out to lunch, but thanks for making me think about …”
I am with 100 folks today who see the world quite differently from me. I chose to attend this conference for that reason. I am going to do what I do – sow seeds; sow gently, sow provocatively, sow generously.
Make Today Remarkable, by gardening,
I wish I had checked the calendar a few weeks ago and noticed that, according to National Day Calendar, today is National Go Fishing Day. “This is a day to take time from your daily routine to go find a stream, a pond, a lake or a river, bait your hook, cast out your pole and catch a fish or two.”
When I go fly fishing, I occasionally catch(and release) but I find peace in the casting. The majesty of nature, the mystery of the mind of a fish, the structure of the waterway all pull me away from the weeds; the world that necessarily keeps me moving towards the goals I have set but can become a day-to-day hum drum. The practice of casting becomes the means to peace and release of the structure my mind has found comfort holding on to.
I can’t break out of the weeds today (or tomorrow, or this weekend) but will find a date in my calendar to pull out my rod and flys and spend the day in a couple of streams and in my head.
If you can ‘go fishing’ today – take the break. If not schedule your hike, ride, yoga, paddle in your calendar and take a day to refresh.
Right off the top – I don’t know the answer to this question that became top of mind over the past month. I have read vitriolic tirades, tongue in cheek snippets and thoughtful posts about Caitlin and Rachel. I am not a psychologist or a gender/race expert. I am not a whole bunch of things and I would admit that there are days I am not completely sure what I am. On some days, I also ‘pass’ for somethings that I am not. My identity is crafted, nurtured and natural. I am the sum of my experiences, my tendencies, my preferences and my aspirations. The identity you see isn’t a perfect reflection of reality and it is different from what others might see. It is surely different from how I see myself ( a 30 year old athletic, intellectual, change agent).
Where my struggle with these stories lies is in not being able to view the world from their perspective. My biases from a different identity blur the picture.
How can I be kind, open, magnanimous and unjudging? How can I be anything else?
Visiting with my mother (87 years old), she reminded me of some advice her mother gave her. If you are going to say something about someone else, ask these three questions;
Is it true?
Is it necessary?
Is it kind?
If the answer isn’t yes to all three then reconsider what you are about to say.
I am not sure where the questions come from but are at least 80 years old and for my money they still are a great reminder in 2015. The pause to consider the questions, the answers and then the reflection should temper any mean spiritedness, vengefulness, or nasty peer pressure and make the moment better.
Make Today Remarkable, by being sure of your words,
Even as I typed the title of this post, great anxiety rose up. How could I find what I need in the voices of those who are critical? Was my ego big enough/small enough to take seriously the points raised by those who have disagreement with my thesis? Could I learn from the reviewers, especially those who held strong ideological positions that were different from mine?
For regular readers it is no surprise that I have a raging confirmation bias. I like people who are like me. What did I do with folks who weren’t? Am I willing and capable to hear their voices and with humility and grace and offer space in my head and heart for them? This seems to be the challenge I am being called to face. So I undertake to be open, curious, and flexible (even saying that brings trepidation) enough to listen, consider, and accept the individual if not their ideas.
This struggle is where I believe I may be shaped and changed. If I hold fast and stridently to my existing biases I have little opportunity to grow. If I pick up threads that are being offered, we may be able to weave a beautiful tapestry, together. Maybe what I already believe isn’t meant to be the frame holding the picture but just a small fragment of a remarkable masterpiece.
Exploring with some anxiousness,
What do you say when you have nothing to say? You can say nothing. You can say nothing about something. Or you can say something about nothing.
I have done all three. I usually feel compelled to have an opinion so I rarely say nothing. More often I let my bombastic nature out by saying nothing about something. Today I choose to say something about nothing.
Make Today Remarkable, by knowing the difference,
I often preface a message or a statement with ” I don’t know if this really happened but I know it is true”. Truth is perceived. Truth is fungible. Truth isn’t absolute.
True rings in my heart and in my head and I strive for the tune that it plays.