This one made me think. (And I averted my eyes away from the double negative as I re-read this 3x.)
If you are curious about Yoko Ono’s Cleaning Piece I, II and IV (I was), you’ll find them @ Ibloghappiness.
This one made me think. (And I averted my eyes away from the double negative as I re-read this 3x.)
If you are curious about Yoko Ono’s Cleaning Piece I, II and IV (I was), you’ll find them @ Ibloghappiness.
Six days back at work…after a two week vacation.
Tension. Decompression. Recharge. Ramp-up. Escalation. Full engagement. Tension.
Full loop restored.
And, cycle time is compressing year over year.
Meetings. Emails. 2013 Planning. Events. Phone calls. Problems. Opportunities. Running. Faster.
In a momentary gap in my schedule…a mental image of this photo flickers by…a photo tripped into during the recharging phase of vacation. Image darts in and out for days. Pulling me back to a time when life was simpler. When picking sweet, juicy Bing cherries and filling the bucket was the task of the day.
I am here on purpose... [Read more...]
“For me, trees have always been the most penetrating preachers. I revere them when they live in tribes and families, in forests and groves. And even more I revere them when they stand alone. They are like lonely persons. Not like hermits who have stolen away out of some weakness, but like great, solitary men, like Beethoven and Nietzsche. In their highest boughs the world rustles, their roots rest in infinity; but they do not lose themselves there, they struggle with all the force of their lives for one thing only: to fulfil themselves according to their own laws, to build up their own form, to represent themselves. Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree. When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disk of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured. And every young farmboy knows that the hardest and noblest wood has the narrowest rings, that high on the mountains and in continuing danger the most indestructible, the strongest, the ideal trees grow.
Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life. [Read more...]
A post by Amanda Patterson on Rudyard Kipling triggered a stream of thoughts this morning. Kipling was born yesterday in 1865. I couldn’t recall ever reading anything by Kipling but I’ve certainly heard of him. (DK. Mr. Contemporary. Always looking forward. Never much for history. Not much for looking back. What possibly could I learn from a life 100+ years ago? PAST IS PAST.)
Kipling, “born in India, was sent to England to live with a foster family and receive a formal British education at the age of 6. These were hard years for Kipling. His Foster mother was a brutal woman, who quickly grew to despise her young foster son. She beat and bullied Kipling, who also struggled to fit in at school. Kipling’s solace came in books and stories. With few friends, he devoted himself to reading. By the age of 11, Kipling was on the verge of a nervous breakdown. A visitor to his home saw his condition and immediately contacted his mother, who rushed back to England and rescued her son from the Holloways.”
Yet, here’s a man who survived this childhood and flourished. He said:
Small miseries, like small debts, hit us in so many places, and meet us at so many turns and corners, that what they want in weight, they make up in number, and render it less hazardous to stand the fire of one cannon ball, than a volley composed of such a shower of bullets.
I always prefer to believe the best of everybody, it saves so much trouble.
This is a brief life, but in its brevity it offers us some splendid moments, some meaningful adventures.
And a man, who produced this poem in 1895:
“I talk about love, forgiveness, social justice; I rage against American materialism in the name of altruism, but have I even controlled my own heart? The overwhelming majority of time I spend thinking about myself, pleasing myself, reassuring myself, and when I am done there is nothing to spare for the needy. Six billion people live in this world, and I can only muster thoughts for one. Me.”
~ Donald Miller, Blue Like Jazz
Image Credit: ChristinaQuayer
The trick is in what one emphasizes.
We either make ourselves miserable,
Or we make ourselves happy.
The amount of work is the same.
Go without a coat; find out what cold is. Go hungry; keep your existence lean. Wear away the fat, get down to the lean tissue and see what it’s all about. The only time you define your character is when you go without. In times of hardship, you find out what you’re made of and what you’re capable of. If you’re never tested, you’ll never define your character.
~ Henry Rollins
This meeting was no different than any other. No different from the hundreds of meetings in the days, the months before. Where I’m on to the next meeting while attending the one in front of me. Meetings with a replicated loop. Mind whirring…processing. Me pushing. Me prodding. Agitating. Me wanting and needing more. Extraction. Creating discomfort. Manufacturing urgency. I’m not looking for you to love me. That’s what your dog is for. This morning, my level of consciousness had been ratcheted up by a few lines from Daniel Bor the night before. And, I roll into the first meeting of the day. I’m listening. I’m watching.
The three great elemental sounds in nature are the sound of rain, the sound of wind in a primeval wood, and the sound of outer ocean on a beach. I have heard them all, and of the three elemental voices, that of ocean is the most awesome, beautiful and varied.
“There’s two kinds of people in this world when you boil it all down. You got your talkers and you got your doers. Most people are just talkers. All they got is talk. But when all is said and done, it’s the doers who change this world. And when they do that, they change us, and that’s why we never forget them. So which one are you? Do you just talk about it, or do you stand up and do something about it? Because believe you me, all the rest of it is just coffee house bull$4!+.”
Image Credit: FatmohnScoop
Neil Young, the legendary Canadian born singer and songwriter turns 67 today.
He can’t sing. He can’t play. He’s great.
- Tom Earls
Source: Yet, another great post from Rob Firchau @ the The Hammock Papers. Thank you Rob.
It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them. I was so preposterously serious in those days, such a humorless little prig. Lightly, lightly – it’s the best advice ever given me…So throw away your baggage and go forward. There are quicksands all about you, sucking at your feet, trying to suck you down into fear and self-pity and despair. That’s why you must walk so lightly. Lightly my darling, on tiptoes and no luggage, not even a sponge bag, completely unencumbered.
- Aldous Huxley, Island
Related Sylvia Path Post: Oh, How I Ricochet Between…
“I have come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element. It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather. I possess tremendous power to make life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration, I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or de-escalated, and a person is humanized or de-humanized. If we treat people as they are, we make them worse. If we treat people as they ought to be, we help them become what they are capable of becoming.”
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)
“Yōji Yamamoto (山本 耀司, born 1943, is a Japanese fashion designer based in Tokyo and Paris. He is among the master tailors whose work is thought to be of genius and has been described as probably the only designer you could name who has 60-year-olds who think he’s incredible and 17-year-olds who think he’s way cool. His more prestigious awards for his contributions to fashion include the Japanese Medal of Honor, the Ordre national du Mérite, the Royal Designer for Industry and the Master of Design award by Fashion Group International.” (Source: Wiki)
Image Source: middlenameconfused
Source: Thank you madamescherzo
“Gentleness may have been the first thing I noticed about Joe…I may have noticed his size at about the same time: though he is by no means an enormous man, he was the tallest person in our training, and one of the few men. Though I believe that he is gentle by nature, I get the sense that he also carefully cultivates gentleness, probably in part to compensate for a tendency to seem imposing. The intensity of his focus, his fierce intelligence, and his penetrating insight may have contributed to an all-around sense of intimidation, were it not for his warm heart and gentle approach…Joe’s equanimity and gentleness were part of what made me so suspicious. I felt I was being lulled into something, perhaps made to accept some kind of touchy-feely, New Age pabulum. (Only much later would it occur to me, with a painful shock: somehow I had been taught to fear genuine kindness, to be suspicious of sentiment, to believe that if it wasn’t genuine poetry, it wasn’t genuine feeling. When, I wondered, did I become so infected with irony that I couldn’t receive uncomplicated love?) With time, though, I recognized that Joe epitomized the first rule of Rubenfeld Synergy Method: gentleness. Approaching our clients this way also communicates a deep kind of attention: when we are being gentle, we are listening, and leaving space for the client’s truth to emerge.”
~ Kamela Dolinova, Gentleness: the first word in our work
You only directly control three things in the entire world. Interestingly, none of these are other people. You are in charge of your thoughts, your words, and your actions. That’s it. Most of us neglect these three key items, however. Instead we direct our precious, limited energy on thinking and talking about how others should be different. This is fruitless and even lazy. As long as I’m focused on what’s wrong with you, I don’t need to pay any attention to improving me. Focus on you. Rather than hoping you can mysteriously change the fundamental personality traits of those around you, direct your energy on perfecting your own sweet self.
Devora Zack, CEO of Only Connect Consulting
I’ve been watching the debates and the bad actors in government. I’ve concluded that I’m a master compromiser when compared to this crowd. Then the mirror swings around and hits me on the forehead. See the chart below. Here’s Michael Brown’s 4-box on Compromise. I have no idea what “TKI” and “MBTI” stand for. Check out his full post on the theory behind it – I’ll let you hash that out with Michael and his high brow intellectual friends. I just wanted (needed) to get to the bottom line – how do I score? (Yes, it is always about the score. Yes, it is.) See the arrow pointing to my position. (And no one was looking when I nudged the star over to the right with some elbow grease. Hey, at least I’m not in the bottom right, right?. Poets/Artists, save your breath. I’m immune to the beatings on my lack of sensitivity on this topic.)
Then coincidently (by now you know there are no coincidences on my ride), I trip into the answer…
“Reading was my escape and my comfort, my consolation, my stimulant of choice: reading for the pure pleasure of it, for the beautiful stillness that surrounds you when you hear an author’s words reverberating in your head.”
~ Paul Auster
Fifteen years ago, I would have told you to get out of my office (get out of my face) and stop wasting my time. 10 years ago, I would have called “bulls-” on this malarkey. Today, the image above calms me. And I’ve come to believe that I need this…It’s good for me. It’s good for the team around me. (But let’s not get too excited. I’m a toddler here. I’m on the 3rd step of a 107 step program.) And since it has now been endorsed by the Truth, the Wall Street Journal, I’m in. (:) Lao Tzu (604 BC – 531 BC): “A Journey of a Thousand Miles Takes a Single Step”…Time to take that step… [Read more...]
Source: Certified Copy
“Ours is a time of continual movement which often leads to restlessness, with the risk of ‘doing for the sake of doing.’ We must resist this temptation by trying ‘to be’ before trying ‘to do.’”
~ Pope John Paul II, Novo Millennio Inuente
You need not do anything.
Remain sitting at your table and listen.
You need not even listen, just wait.
You need not even wait,
just learn to be quiet, still and solitary.
And the world will freely offer itself to you unmasked.
It has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.
Other related Kafka posts:
“Forget what you’ve heard about first impressions; it’s the last impressions that count. Last impressions — whether they’re with customer service, an online shopping experience, or a blind date — are the ones we remember. They’re the ones that keep us coming back. But there’s one kind of final impression that people seem to forget. The closing line of email — that line that you write before you type your name — has been all but forgotten. Go take a look at your inbox: you might be astonished at how little attention people pay to the closing lines when writing email. This underrated rhetorical device is so frequently disregarded that many people have the gall to use an automatic closing line attached to their email signature file…If a closing line can be so meaningful, so important, why are emailers squandering the opportunity, putting no thought in the closing? Time, perhaps, iPhone-finger exhaustion, multi-tasking – they’re all possible excuses. And many times, acceptable ones. We can’t be expected to neatly tie up every email every time. But once in a while, it would be delightful if people applied the same sincerity to the last impressions that we do to first ones.”
As mass producer of emails, this email & chart left its mark…
I’m productive. Efficient. I’ve been told by many – obsessively productive and efficient. I chew up tasks and spit them out. Yet, one can always be more productive, right? I’ve been in a life long search for the Holy Grail of a Zero Email Box solution at the end of each day. A search for the best To-Do program. A hunt for a better way to manage projects. A race to squeeze more into each day. I believe being more productive is possible. Within reach. Just within the ends of my fingertips.
So, when I came across Robin Sharma’s post titled “Become The Most Productive Person You Know”, I was like Zeke on his bone – on it. When Sharma opened his post by stating: “I want to help you create explosive productivity so you get big things done (and make your life matter)…”, I was giddy. I was delirious with anticipation. Imagine that – I WILL ACHIEVE “EXPLOSIVE” PRODUCTIVITY.
I’ve graded myself from “A” to “F” on each of his 21 Productivity tips and self-categorized my competency into three buckets: “Utter Failure”, “Journeyman” and “Master.”
My initial reaction to Robin Sharma’s tips was that I could be more productive if I stopped reading these “How-to” posts. Then after I settled in…I saw that there was some value in the exercise. And he did manage to highlight some nagging areas of personal concern (more consistent exercise, email addiction, extreme multitasking, need to take breaks to refuel.)
My Overall Score:
Source: Adapted from Gapingvoid
“The best people possess a feeling for beauty, the courage to take risks, the discipline to tell the truth, the capacity for sacrifice. Ironically, their virtues make them vulnerable; they are often wounded, sometimes destroyed.”
~ Ernest Hemingway
And every year there is a brief, startling moment
When we pause in the middle of a long walk home and
Suddenly feel something invisible and weightless
Touching our shoulders, sweeping down from the air:
It is the autumn wind pressing against our bodies;
It is the changing light of fall falling on us.
People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don’t even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a child — our own two eyes. All is a miracle.
~Thich Nhat Hanh
Source: Thank you artemisdreaming
Source: That Girl
One year ago this weekend, I ventured out into the blogosphere. In this Happy Anniversary to Me Post, here’s a few of my observations and reflections over the past year:
STATS: 882 posts. 215,946 views. 14,202 comments. (Can these be real?)
INSANITY. Doing The Same Thing Over and Over and Expecting a Different Result. My “Tags” have reproduced like rabbits. 1,946 Tags. (WHAT. AM. I. DOING. HERE? I have Tag addiction. I tried to create a Page and they all wouldn’t fit. Tags have become the drawer that you keep stuffing the “really important stuff” that you’re going to need later – the drawer is now impossible to open and close. And I have no idea how to unwind this monstrosity.)
I Just Don’t Get It. My “Categories.” I have 11 categories. I mark most posts with many categories. (So, exactly how are you helping your followers find a post if they all have the same categories?)
NAGGING at me. Months ago, Joe C. had told me that I had my Blog Name (Lead.Learn.Live) backwards. He believed it should be re-ordered “Live.Learn.Lead.” (As each day passes, I think he’s right. Yet, I can’t do it. I can’t change it. I just can’t. NO. NO. NO.) [Read more...]
n. the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own—populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness—an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk.
The Big Payoff by Steven Pressfield
“…The Big Payoff is central to the American dream…it might be the dream job, the fantasy spouse, the smash hit that puts us over the top. American Idol is built on the fascination of the Big Payoff. So is Celebrity Apprentice…The dream of the Big Payoff is that it will change our lives. I’ve succumbed to this dream. Have you? In my life, I’ve had moments that could qualify as Big Payoffs…The truth is there is no Big Payoff…
No Almonds. No Butterfingers. No Caramel. No Cookie pieces. No Chocolate chips. No Chocolate sauce. No Heath Bar crunch. No Gummy Bears. No Hot Fudge. No marshmallow. No fudge. No Reese’s Peanut Butter pieces. No walnuts. No strawberry. NEED. IT. RIGHT. NOW. No chasers. Straight up….
“If you’ve ever seen a painting, or watched a movie, or read a novel, or enjoyed a performance, or followed a television show that moved you on some essential level, you probably wondered: What inspired that? We’ve wondered that, too. So we asked. What follows are the answers, in all their varied glory, to that question. In part it’s an investigation into the enigmatic nature of creative inspiration. (Which, it turns out, is often not so enigmatic. Step 1: Work. Step 2: Be frustrated. Step 3: Repeat.)”
Read how inspiration fires for Alicia Keys, Anthony Bourdain, Michael Chabon, Quentin Tarantino, Al Pacino, Junot Diaz and others in The New York Times Magazine: Inspiration Issue, September 30, 2012
“I’m not fascinated by people who smile all the time. What I find interesting is the way people look when they are lost in thought, when their face becomes angry or serious, when they bite their lip, the way they glance, the way they look down when they walk, when they are alone and smoking a cigarette, when they smirk, the way they half smile, the way they try and hold back tears, the way when their face says they want to say something but can’t, the way they look at someone they want or love… I love the way people look when they do these things. It’s… beautiful.”
“They were aboard Horn’s 110-foot sailboat off Cape Town, South Africa, when perhaps as many as 10,000 common dolphins appeared around their boat, swimming in what’s sometimes referred to as stampede behavior. ”At first, on the horizon, we noticed what appeared to be a giant ball of bait fish…The water boiled for literally a mile in every direction … only as it approached at the speed of a swift wave did we see first a nose, then another, then a dorsal fin and then a thousand of them, then more…Only then did we realize we were experiencing the rare ‘super pod’ of dolphins. Not dozens, not hundreds, but thousands of them — so thick you could have walked across their backs had they been game for it.”
~ The GrindTV Blog
Thank you Susan for the share.