5:00 am. And Inspired.

forest, woods, aspen, birch,trees


Good Wednesday morning. Here are my selections of the inspiring posts of the week:

Olive @ Olivethepeople with her post titled The Subway Samaritan: “He was crazy. At least I thought so. At least at first. You see…

Tina @ Practical Practice Management with her post titled Who Made an Impact on You. I’ve read similar iterations of this thought but it never seems to get old and always seems to leave me in wonder. “Name three friends who helped you through a difficult time…

Sedone @ Getting Better, Man. with his post titled Giving Happiness a Helping Hand aka Beware the Silent H*. “I’m dedicated to giving happiness a helping hand, although sometimes I want to give it the finger…And don’t miss the short video.

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5:06 am. And Inspired.

Inspired with Nature


Good Wednesday morning.  All of my inspiring posts of the week come from a single source.  Thank you Sandy Sue for pointing me to Peg-o-leg’s Ramblings who has started a series of guest posts called “Should Have Been Freshly Pressed.”  Peg awards the bloggers a “Freshly Pegged Award.”  Here’s some samplings:

Life In The Boomer Lane with her guest post titled Why I’d Rather Be 65 Than 5, 15, 25, 35, 45, or 55I hate that my body moves more slowly than it used to, that when I roll over in bed, my back hurts, that sex is accomplished in mostly one position, that photos of myself scare me, that I can no longer run up and down the stairs or sit in a pretzel position on the floor or reach way under the bed to grab something. I hate that reaching way down into the crib to pick up my grandson must be planned like a military operation . I hate that my memory fails at the oddest times, that I am beginning to lose a grip on pop culture, that I think a lot about being home in bed with a book when I am out in the evening. I hate that people in charge can look younger than my children…” Great post.  Read more here.’

Misty @ Misty’s Laws with her guest post titled The Last Straw…To My Heart. “I have an admirer.  I am being wooed on a daily basis.  I see him almost every day and he gives me what I so desperately need.  He satisfies my cravings and soothes the beast within.  He gives me the ability to face the day.  He provides me with the fix that I need before I can function every morning.  He is . . . the drive-thru guy at my Dunkin Donuts...” Read more here. [Read more...]

4:26 am. And Inspired.

baby, cute, inspiring, emotional, photography


Good Wednesday morning.  Here’s my selection of inspiring posts of the week.

  1. Thank you Megan @ Make Something Mondays for her post More Than Photographs where she shares the photo above and a collection of similar inspiring shots.  See more here
  2. Russ Towne @ A Grateful Man with his post: There is Greatness in Goodness.   ” I just flashed back to a scene in the movie where a man with many flaws who has wanted his whole life to be great and failed over and over again finally does something that is indeed great. The woman he is with says something to him that is profound. It went something like this: Yes, you were great. “But you were also something much better than that…Read more here.
  3. Julie @ jmgoyder with her post Gutsy9’s Growth: I look forward to each post (pictures and updates) on G9’s development.  G9 is a orphaned baby peacock which Julie has adopted.  And there has been an exciting new development.  “But guess what? I think he might…Read more here.
  4. Renplus @ for her post titled Cocoon Breaks Open. “The enormity of Monday’s layoff didn’t sink in until yesterday, and I allowed myself to grieve finally. It needed to happen, and I was proud that I could experience it, release the pain, and move forward. Some beautiful things that I never expected really touched me, though…” Read more here. [Read more...]

4:58 am. And Inspired.

Narvik, Norway, Arctic Circle, snowboarding, extreme sports, jump, sunset, sunrise, mountains


Good Wednesday morning.  Here’s my selection of inspiring posts of the week.

  1. Thank you olavstubburd for the photo which was shot in Narvik, in Northern Norway, inside the Arctic Circle.
  2. Colleen @ The Chatter Blog with her post When You’re Not Good Enough: “What do you tell yourself when you start facing the realization you are not good enough for something?  Not that you can’t do something.  But that you can’t do something well enough to excel, continue and progress. What Do You Do?…Without a doubt I am not good enough to test for master level…Can I accept that I cannot move ahead, test, progress…Can I do that? Is accepting that I have done “enough” a manner of growing?…
  3. Kurt @ Cultural Offering with his post A Life Well Lived. In Praise of RamseyEveryone has stories of the best dog in the world and we have ours – the story of Ramsey…Ramsey grew up with our children.  He played with them, watched after them, slept on and at their beds.  He was an incredibly good natured dog, friendly to most everyone…He never wandered or got in much trouble; instead he was content accompany anyone who might be going on a walk, playing or working in the yard.  His idea of excitement was running laps as fast as he could around the yard in a frenzied fit of joy.  He was that kind of dog…” Heartwarming story.  Read more[Read more...]

5:16 am. And Inspired.

black and white, photography, Luca Setti


Good Wednesday morning.  Here’s my selection of inspiring posts of the week.

  1. The photo above was taken by Luca Setti.  Check out Luca’s other shots at Luca Setti Fine Art Photographer. (See Galleries section.)  Awesome and Inspiring.
  2. Elena @ Live Simply, Travel Lightly, Love Passionately & Don’t Forget To Breathe with her post: Old-Fashioned. “In a town, that has so many healthy, but plastic-looking women, with ridiculous hair extensions, it’s truly empowering to be walking it, my way…knowing, that family of a sick child has to pay for a wig, according to that family’s income level, is more than enough reason for me, to donate my hair to an organization that gives it for free.  The family is going through enough pain and trauma as it is. I know, because I lost my father to cancer.  Authentic and inspiring Elena.
  3. Rob Biesenbach @ Act Like You Mean Business with his post Fewer Inspirational Quotes, More Original Thinking, PleaseThe Internet has ruined quotations for me.  I love inspirational quotes as much as the next guy…But enough is enough…Now some people may feel they’ve got no special wisdom or insights to share. Bull. You’re just not looking hard enough…”  Excellent wake-up call and post Rob.
  4. Steve Aitchison @ Change Your Thoughts Change Your Life with his post What on Earth is Stopping you? “Times are changing fast and more and more of us are realizing it’s possible to create a life for ourselves instead of life creating us. There is something more you should be doing. There is something waiting for you. There is a spark inside of you waiting to be lit. There is craving, a feeling, of something more important you should be doing. There has never been a better time to start…So, tell me this.  What is stopping you?[Read more...]

6:53 am. And inspired.

Canola Field Shaun Lowe

Here’s my picks for the inspiring posts of the week.

Thank you Canadian Art Junkie for sharing the photo above in her post Shaun Lowe: Canola, Sunshine & The Sea.  See her post for more wonderful photographs of eastern Canada.

Steve Gutzler with his post titled 7 Keys to Building Irresistible Energy:I’ll be honest, one of my favorite compliments is when people take note of my energy and passion. But having such energy has been a life struggle of mine. When I was a young man in my early 20′s, I was diagnosed with a blood disorder. For over three years I woke up every day with a low grade temperature and lacking energy. I’d drag through my days. My attitude was good but my immune system was ravaged…Well, fast forward to today. I’m healthy with no hint of fatigue. I train 4-5 days a week and I eat like an athlete. I strive to get seven hours of sleep and I’m working most days by 5 AM. What I like most about where I am at is how grateful I am for what I have. I am fearfully and wonderfully made, not perfect but I’m sure grateful for what I have!”…Read entire post for Steve’s 7 Keys to Building Energy at this link.

Maybe It’s Just Me who describes herself  and her blog as “The life of a middle aged hippie on Maui, eating raw and vegan and staying healthy. I walked the Camino de Santiago in Spain in fall 2012 with my husband and son“…do we need more inspiration than this?!!  Her beautiful post shares her sensations as she returns home to the various places she’s lived.  The post is titled:  As We Relive Our Lives In What We Tell You and this excerpt is returning home to Maui: …there is no better feeling than coming home to a place that I love.  I went up onto the roof deck today to look at the clouds, the palm trees, and the volcano rising above, and again later on, to watch a glorious sunset over the ocean.  I was content to just sit and feel the warmth of the island air on my skin.  Skin that desperately cries out for sunshine and humidity, and that whispers “mahalo” every time I return home to Maui.”  Read her entire post at this link.

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5:28 am. And inspired.

David Tribby - Chicago Panoramic Skyline & Sunset

Thank you David Tribby for the inspiring panoramic shot of the City of Chicago. And, now, on to the inspiring posts of the week:

James Altucher, pro blogger, @ The Altucher Confidential with his post on his morning ritual titled The Six People You Must Find TodayOnce you do this, oxytocin will explode through your body, lighting up all of your pleasure centers. (1) Someone to love. Write the name and why you love this person. (2) Someone to thank. You must call them and thank them. If you can’t call them, just write their name down. (3) Someone to be grateful for…Read entire post at this link.

Judy @ petit4chocolatier with her post: Chocolate Cupcakes with Soft Blue Butter-Cream Icing with Little Chocolate Sprinkles.  She had me at her post title.  And then she stole my stomach with wave upon wave of delectable cupcake photos.  I wanted to come through the screen to get at these.  Pan through Judy’s other posts.  Amazing.

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4:02 am. And inspired.

Red Sea, Sea, beach, sunrise, Egypt

Thank you Sandy @ Another Lovely Day for the amazing photo share of the Egyptian sunrise over the Red Sea.

And, now, on to the inspiring posts of the week:

Julie @ jmgoyder – Wings & Things from a retired dairy farm in Western Australia…with her series of posts on Gutsy9, an abandoned baby peacock that was adopted by Julie.  Start at this post: Tips on Raising a Baby Peacock and then pan forward to the photos and updates.  I look forward with anticipation to Julie’s updates on Gutsy9.  Here’s an excerpt: So I have been raising Gutsy9 myself and he and I are totally imprinted on each other now. He is a pied, so half white and half blue so it will be interesting to watch him grow up. At night he sleeps in a box in the veranda and during the day he sits on my shoulder. Read on for the 6 tips at this link.  And, don’t miss Julie’s Bio/About page.  You won’t be disappointed.

Linda Petersen @ Raising 5 Kids With Disabilities And Remaining Sane Blog rings the bell again with a wonderful post titled Life Is Like A Tiny Bag of Jelly Bellies.  Linda shares a number of little events that give “her a boost and make her happy.”  Here’s a few of her Jelly Bellies…”(1) seeing a grandfather walking along, holding the hand of his joyous granddaughter, all dressed up with coat and fancy hat, skipping happily along, ribbons trailing, (2) hanging a picture on the wall and having it come out straight the first time, (3) finding a $10 bill in the pocket of a coat I haven’t worn in a long time, (4) a hug from a child, especially if it is accompanied by and “I love you.”  Hit this link to read more.

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5:03 am. And, Inspired…

canoe, canoeing, river, mist, fog, Golden Ears Mountain

Good Wednesday morning. The peaceful, easy feeling photo above of the Alouette River, Pitt Meadows, British Columbia was taken by Kevin van der Leek.

Paulette Mahurin @ The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap with her post The Touch That Changed My Life: “While in grad school at UCLA, I had a clinical rotation at a VA outpatient hospital, when a homeless man was brought in to the emergency room. He was filthy with a foul odor, as if he hadn’t changed his clothes in days nor took them off to go to the bathroom. I saw him come with the paramedics and the commotion that ensued with a lull before anyone started treatment, to gown and glove up, goggles over eyes, all body parts covered…Read More at this link.  Inspiring.  Period.

Linda Petersen @ Raising Five Kids With Disabilities and Remaining Sane Blog with her post I Have Raised My Children Right in the Most Important Area: “I am sure that every parent questions how they have raised their children. I know I have.  I have not been strict enough in making them eat all of their vegetables and clean their rooms, (mainly because I don’t eat all of my vegetables and clean my room.) I know to some people  this is a major parenting faux pas.  However, I have raised my children right in the most important area…caring for others…”  Read the rest of this inspiring story at this link.  And don’t miss Linda’s ABOUT page.

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The Relentless Reviser

henri matisse-young-sailor I & II (1906)


The path to excellence.  Study the best in the field. Develop lifelong habits. Continuously revise and improve. (Kaizen.)  Practice.  Have a critical eye with your own work.  Be sure to focus on the process as it is as important as the output. Pursue your field of passion despite the views of your critics.  There are no shortcuts to excellence – it takes incredible focus and effort.  Same old, same old?  Yes.  It worked for Matisse.  And it will work for you and me.

Henri Matisse (1869-1954), along with Picasso and Duchamp, was regarded as one of three artists who helped define art and sculpture in the 20th century.  There is a Matisse show on view at the Metropolitan Museum of Art until March 17th, 2013.  There is an exceptional review of the show in wsj.com titled The Relentless Reviser.  Below I share excerpts from the review that are applicable to many of us in our fields: [Read more...]

7:40 am. And, Inspired…

Nitzus Wheatfields and Vineyards near Waikerie Riverland Region South Australia

Good Wednesday morning. Nitzus kicks us off with a photo he titles “Land of Gold” – wheat fields and vineyards near  Waikerie in the Riverland region in South Australia.  Be sure to check out his blog and other great photos.  And now on to my selection of the inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Don Carnagey~Lanier with his post Giving Gratefulness and Being Lonely: “All of our lives are a cycle and a river that we must each travel one our own. The destination is set, but the method of our journeying is up to us. We can cruise down the middle of the river at top speed, or we can hug the shore and spin around in eddies. We can crash over rapids or chart a safer path between obstacles. We can slum along the bottom in the mire and slime of sediment, or we can glide along the sparkling surface where the air is clean. The river is ours from birth to death. How we’ll navigate it is determined by the hundreds of small choices we make each day.”  Read entire post at this link.

Make Believe Boutique with another of her steady stream of thought provoking posts titled The Fresh Blush of Color in the Transpersonal Soul:  “What capacities lie unrecognized within us? What currently unfathomable abilities lie dormant, and what can we do to speed their appearance? These are humbling questions that remind us that for all we know our potentials may exceed our wildest dreams. Plotinus claimed that humankind stands poised midway between the beasts and the gods. Perhaps this is another way of saying that we stand midway on our developmental and evolutionary trajectory to full human potential…”  Read entire post at this link. [Read more...]

5:20 am. And, Inspired…

Linda's Son Standing in Mono Lake

Good Wednesday morning. Linda @ A Nature Mom took this photo of her son at Mono Lake, Eastern Sierra California.  So much seems to have happened since my last hump day post.  Children are on my mind and this wonderful, peaceful (and safe) photo resonated with me.  Be sure to check out Linda’s blog and her photos – wonderful, heartwarming images.

And now on to my selection of the inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Tony Caselli with his moving post  A Night of Long HugsThe house is quiet…On a day like today, with the tragic shooting in Connecticut, I felt fortunate to be rehearsing a play about love, and the power of family and kindness. I got home from rehearsal just before bedtime, and hugged my wife. My daughter came out in her pajamas and gave me a big, long hug, saying “I love you Dad”…10 minutes later, sitting with my 12-year old as he was about to read himself to sleep, we quietly discussed how sad those families in Connecticut must be right now. After we sat for a minute in silence he looked at me. “When I grow up and become a psychologist”, he said, “I hope I can help someone to not do stuff like that.” I hugged him close. “I think that’d be a pretty great thing, buddy.” And now I lay in bed, and I listen to the quiet of the house.” Read entire post at this link.   [Read more...]

Set fire to your old self

Portrait, Woman, Face, Black and White

“You don’t know anyone at the party, so you don’t want to go. You don’t like cottage cheese, so you haven’t eaten it in years. This is your choice, of course, but don’t kid yourself: it’s also the flinch.

Your personality is not set in stone. You may think a morning coffee is the most enjoyable thing in the world, but it’s really just a habit. Thirty days without it, and you would be fine. You think you have a soul mate, but in fact you could have had any number of spouses. You would have evolved differently, but been just as happy.

You can change what you want about yourself at any time. You see yourself as someone who can’t write or play an instrument, who gives in to temptation or makes bad decisions, but that’s really not you. It’s not ingrained. It’s not your personality. Your personality is something else, something deeper than just preferences, and these details on the surface, you can change anytime you like. [Read more...]

4:03 am. And, Inspired…

Visiting The Wheat Fields Next To Van Gogh's Grave, Auvers Sur Oise, France

Good Wednesday morning.  The photo above is a couple visiting the wheat fields next to Van Gogh’s grave in Auvers Sur Oise, France.  Hit this link to get full impact of this shot.  The full size photograph evokes many powerful emotions…

And now on to my selection of the inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Lvsrao @ Lvsrao’s Blog with his post The Seven Principles: Life is a struggle. Remembering 7 principles gives strength.  (1) In generosity and helping others be like a river. (2) In compassion and grace be like the sun…(Read the rest of his five principles at this link.  Loved it.)

Kim @ Tranquil Dreams with her post When is it OK…:  “Six years ago today, my dad (passed away)…My dad was the typical Chinese man from previous generation who didn’t show his emotions much and didn’t compliment much (or at all). …After he passed, it was when I realize that a good part of my life was spent on trying to do things to make my father proud, however it seemed that I never did actually get to that point.  I was just never that perfect daughter…(Read more for the full story and conclusion.  And listen to the music clip.  Moving.)

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3:50 am. And, Inspired…

home and lighthouse; sunset, ocean, island

Good Wednesday morning.  Here’s a selection of inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Vicki Flaherty @ Mostly My Heart Sings with her post The Survivor In Me:  “I guess you never think someone will say the words “You have cancer.”  I certainly had never imagined it. It was surreal. I was home alone and scared. I remember crying like I have never cried before. I’m amazed that just days after the diagnosis, I was already moving to a place of strength and resiliency. The survivor in me, I guess.  Here’s what I wrote in my journal that day, just a series of words: Strong. Resilient. Informed. Great care. Options. Choices. Fortunate. Reaching for family, friends. Being held, supported.  Feeling love. Light. Healing. Growing. Path, Obstacle, Overcome, Stumbling forward with Grace. The seeds for this poem were planted on a beautiful day like today, when I was outside running with Jim, and watching the birds fly over the Iowa River.  I remember thinking how awesome it would be to fly, to embrace the vast openness of the sky and float effortlessly on thermals – and wondering if I could create something like that for myself down here on the ground as a human being.  The answer?  Yes, for moments at a time.  Read the entire post and Vicki’s poem titled Strong at this link.  Inspiring.

Dr. Bill  Wooten, who produces “aha” quote shares day-after-day-after-day, with a quote from Henri Nouwen titled: The Greatest Trap: “Over the years, I have come to realize that the greatest trap in our life is not success, popularity, or power, but self-rejection. Success, popularity, and power can indeed present a great temptation, but their seductive quality often comes from the way they are part of the much larger temptation to self-rejection. When we have come to believe in the voices that call us worthless and unlovable, then success, popularity, and power are easily perceived as attractive solutions...Read the rest of the quote at this link. [Read more...]

4:13 am. And, Inspired…

Good Wednesday morning.  Here’s a selection of inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Kelly Harland, is an aphorist.  I didn’t know what an aphorist or aphorism was. (aph·o·rism/ˈafəˌrizəm/noun/A pithy observation that contains a general truth).  I know now.  What talent.  Here’s Kelly’s post titled: Wept on Vessel.  “What if, an aspect of faith, is embracing who I am?”

Kurt Harden @ Cultural Offering with his post: Helpful Apps.   Kurt suggests that “you try one of these 9 apps and you’ll feel better.”  One of his apps is the Written Word® – Get a blank sheet of paper and write a letter to someone.  Thank them for something and tell them what you have been doing.  Tell them how you think about something.  If necessary use the back of the paper or even a second or third sheet.  Ask them to write you back.  Modeled after society pre-1990.”  Check out his other 8 apps…loved it. [Read more...]

4:23 am. And, Inspired…

Walking on beach with camels and sunrise

Good Wednesday morning.  Here’s a selection of inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Ray @ A Simple, Village Undertaker with his post Potato Chips.  A story about a boy with his bag of potato chips and an old man on a bench in the park.

Ophelia @ Ophelia’s Fiction Blog with her post Life is But a Dream who is tucking her boy Will to sleep with…Baa Baa Black Sheep and Row, Row, Row Your Boat (singing it so many times that it has lost meaning):  But then I look down at his lovely, golden head and I think – can I imagine anything more pure and beautiful than the love I have for this little boy? Why hurry to slip into a dream, when here is this amazing being, breathing, right up against my side as if we’re still one? There’ll plenty of time for dreaming. I don’t want to miss these moments with Will – that make me feel I’m living the most remarkable dream of all.  [Read more...]

Flying…with Baggage.

not good enough, psychology, confidence, assertive, assertiveness, self-help, life, mental health, story

I get assigned the middle seat on flight to the Midwest.

The Window and Aisle seats are occupied.  (< 2 hour flight.  No reason to work oneself up. Last post on similar topic was titled Think Small and it came rushing to mind.)

WSM (Window Seat Mate) asks how “the big guy was so lucky to get stuck in the jump seat.” I reply that I’ve had back-to-back storms to thank for the rescheduling.  No reaction from WSM.

Our Flight is grounded for a “quick repair.”

I pull out my PC to grind through some emails.

WSM steals one glance at my screen.  And then another.  And another.  And another. And then just stares. (I need to invest in a screen protector to keep out prying eyes.  Yet, we can all be forgiven to steal a one quick glance to knock out the curiosity…)  However, there has to be an Emily Post rule where 4-5 side glances followed by a protracted stare is over the line.)

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4:11 am. And, Inspired…

Good Wednesday morning.  Here’s a selection of inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Scott Marshall @ Land-Sea-Sky-Lathail.  Check out his photographs from Scotland.  MUST SEE…(and btw, that’s his photograph above).

Jenny Wright @ Jennyiswright with her post:  Are you?: …You’ve heard that before. Carpe diem, right? That’s not what I mean. I’m not telling you to be content with what you have, either. I’m just suggesting that you step away and look from afar. Your life may be a hell of a lot better than you think…Everything isn’t all sunshine, roses, and unicorns (though unis are totally real) every day. That’s a fact. Some days feel super bad.  Chin up, buttercup.  Maybe that silver lining is right in your face. Try not to hurry. You might miss it…(Read this post)

Ivon @ Teacher as Transformer with his post: The Right Moment Arrived:  “It arrived– A winter storm. Unexpected, I felt unsure. Slow down. Grasping frantically, Busyness overtakes. I let go. I arrive on time. In the very moment that just arrived.[Read more...]

You are what you do. Get on with it.

wsj.com: Eight Principles of Successful Optimists

If there were one guiding principle that encapsulated all pragmatic optimists, it would simply be: “judge your worth not by what you own, but by what you create”…In my travels documenting and working with a number of these individuals I’ve observed number of core principles they all seem to share, and they’re principles any of us can adopt:

  1. Have an unashamed optimism of ambition. (Don’t feel embarrassed to say that things can be better. Have no qualms about imagining an improved world and advocating for it, no matter how much derision you may receive at the hands of the cynical.)
  2. Engage in projects that are bigger than you are. (“Find something more important than you are and dedicate your life to it.”)
  3. Your ideas are for sharing, not protecting. (Pragmatic optimists happily let their ideas go out dating.)
  4. Making mistakes is OK, but not trying is irresponsible.
  5. You’re defined by what you do, not by what you intend to do. (Pragmatic optimists aren’t interested in what you might do if you had more time, or if your manager was more understanding, or if you were the manager, or if it was next week.  You are what you do. That’s it. Get on with it.) [Read more...]

Lightly Child. Lightly.

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 HuxleyIsland  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          


Credits: Image Source: amisfitlikeme. Quote Source: creatingaquietmind

4:14 am. And, Inspired…

Good Wednesday morning.  Here’s a selection of inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Vanessa @ One Thousand Single Days with her Post: My Time Is Running Out“…From the moment we are born we have a number. It sits invisibly above our head ticking down as we saunter through life. The number is the seconds we have left, the number of breaths left in our lungs, the number of beats left in our heart. 
But we are not aware of it. We don’t see that number ticking backwards before us in the mirror as we brush our teeth angrily after the argument had with our spouse and we don’t see it as we close the door behind us as we face another day of work, we don’t see it as we make choices, rejected ideas or grow too shy to speak up…(Read more)

Anton Ferrie @ My Spring Awakening with his post: “The Yellow Balloon.”  “I was clearing my room out the other day…and I stumbled across a small balloon that had been lying in some forgotten corner, having fallen from a bag or pocket. Normally a small piece of debris like this would hold no significance whatsoever…But this balloon symbolized something much greater…A young man had been seen wandering around the pub, evidently lost, and I approached him in the hope that I could be of assistance. I soon found out that the 23 year old American was…(Read more) [Read more...]

Get Up. Get Out. Don’t Sit.

run, running, exercise, diet, fitness, funny, illustration, marc johns


“…New research this month finds that the more time someone spends sitting, the shorter and less robust his or her life may be. The findings were sobering: Every single hour of television watched after the age of 25 reduces the viewer’s life expectancy by 21.8 minutes. By comparison, smoking a single cigarette reduces life expectancy by about 11 minutes. Looking more broadly, they concluded that an adult who spends an average of six hours a day watching TV over the course of a lifetime can expect to live 4.8 years fewer than a person who does not watch TV.  Those results hold true even for people who exercise regularly. It appears a person who does a lot of exercise but watches six hours of TV every night might have a similar mortality risk as someone who does not exercise and watches no TV…” [Read more...]

4:02 am. And, Inspired…

gif, funny, laugh, humor

Good Wednesday morning.  And Happy Halloween.

Here’s a selection of inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Shawn Smucker with his post:  “One Sign of a Life Well Lived:  “Ours is a culture obsessed with sanitizing life, and not just in the physical or chemical sense. We want everything to line up with some unattainable standard, devoid of messiness or intrusion. Funeral services are to remain silent. Learning should be on point. Churches present their Statements of Faith as things which should not even be discussed. Children are expected to behave like robots. Can we become brave enough to leave room for some mess? Can we care less about modern sensitivities and more about meaning? Can we come to appreciate life in all of its unsanitized beauty?…Life = Mess.”  I encourage you to read the entire post.

Tanushree Srivastava @ Charity Spring with her post: “Silence.”  “Silence is underrated in today’s world. There is too much noise. Too many words and too much to say…Why do we have to fill in all the voids with words which are not needed?…Silence is often mistaken as symbol of weakness of a person, which is Wrong. I love silence and stillness…There is no greater power than silence which gives you the authority to steer anything in your favor…I personally spoke a lot and was a girl of too many words. But then realization struck me that I am losing on so much by creating my own noise and being always busy with thinking what I had to speak next. Always in a rush. I am sure many will relate to it. So change it like me. Life is amazing when you enjoy it with a calm and silent heart that is not rushing towards the next thought.”

[Read more...]

Frightening conclusion? I am the decisive element.

art, artist, mixed technique on cardboard

“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)


Credits: Quote – creatingaquietmind, Image – Artchipel

Sunday Morning: Happy

I watched a movie on Netflix yesterday called “Happy.”  It is a shortish ~70 minute documentary which blends the current research on what makes people happy with heart warming human interest stories.  Research has found 50% of our happiness is genetic and that we return to a range of happiness within “our genetic set point.”  A mere 10% of happiness is determined by our job, our economic status, our social status and our health.  A whopping 40% is determined by intentional activity and behavior that we choose.

This is a Sunday morning “feeling” movie.  I’ve shared a short movie trailer below.  If you haven’t seen it, I would encourage you to do so.  No pun intended, but it puts you in a happy place.



I came upon a post on a widely followed blog I follow called Barking Up The Wrong Tree.  The post is titled What Ten Things Should You Do Everyday To Improve Your Life and it summarizes many of the key recommendations in this documentary. I have included key excerpts below: [Read more...]

You can only control three things…

rope swing, tire swinging, swinging, swing, gif

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


Source: Fast Company via John E. Smith @ Strategic Learner.  Image: Thank you madamescherzo via popculturebuzz

4:56 am. And, Inspired…

Good Wednesday morning.

Here’s a selection of inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Cristian Mihai, with over 19,000 blog followers, with his post:  “The 7 Golden Rules of Blogging: I was quite sure that I would never become a successful blogger. I created some blogs on various platforms, but I never had the patience to build an audience. The thing is that I never asked myself whether I had something worth writing about on an almost daily basis. I think this is something a lot of bloggers struggle with. What’s worth sharing? What’s considered useful information?…

Dr. James Stratford @ Beyond the Call with his post: “How do you judge your self worth?”  “I formed the opinion that everyone and everything is in a constant yet constantly changing form of perfection, that we can only ever be what we are in this moment, however ignorant or foolish or amazing that might be, based on the fact that we have lived our particular experience with our particular perspective that has been influences in unique ways since the moment we were born and probably long before. It’s a rationale that demands, often against superficial likes and dislikes, that I honour and respect everyone, including myself. Most of all it demands acceptance of people and conditions as they are. You might want to change the world, but it’s actually essential to be able to accept the way things are exactly as they are before you can do so. Usually, it’s in this clear mindset that we see the seeds of growth, the bud of the lotus, in the present conditions.

[Read more...]

You Do. You Get.


Source: Writers Write

Avoid the “F-Word”

Yes, shameful.  Made you look.  It’s not THE “f-word.”  But, the word “FACT.”

  • The fact of the matter is
  • As a matter of fact
  • The fact is…
  • Actual fact
  • In fact
  • In point of fact
  • That’s a fact
  • Just the facts
  • Factually…
  • Due to the fact that…
  • Factoid…
  • True facts
  • Fact-checking…
  • Spurious facts
  • Fun fact

[Read more...]

Mirror Mirror on the Wall…

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.) 

imageI

Then coincidently (by now you know there are no coincidences on my ride), I trip into the answer…

[Read more...]

4:01 am. And, Inspired…

Good Wednesday morning.

Yes.  If you’ve read my “About” page, you get an understanding of why.  Why I do this (blog).  To get someone.  Anyone.  Everyone.  To share a laugh.  A smile.  An “aha” moment.  Perhaps a tear.  A moment of inspiration.  And I’ve come to learn that I “get” far more than I “give.”  I had another one of those moments at 4:00 pm on Sunday afternoon.  It came unexpectedly in an email from a follower.  I don’t know “D.”  “D” is from the other side of this country. I didn’t know he followed my blog.  I’m reading his email: “Hello. I’m finally doing what I’ve been meaning to for months. I’ve never written to a blogger before and I am absolutely compelled to do so now. Your blog; your blog! Since I came across your blog a few months ago, I have been inspired and uplifted. Most profoundly, your posts about your kids have moved this xx year old father to tears. I just want to thank you, David, for sharing. I don’t believe that many days have passed without me going to your blog. And, I can tell you that after I have done so, I feel a genuine sense of gratitude for the kindness and goodness you so obviously bring to this world. Yes, I am very grateful indeed.”  

Thank you “D.”  You moved me.  You made my day, my week and likely months to come.  Thank you “D” and all of my other friends and followers who take the time to check in to visit each day.  You inspire me with long shots of adrenaline to “blog on.”  And now on to the inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers:

Kurt @ CulturalOffering with his share he titles “Pause“: “Within a breath or two of emptying my mind, thoughts came flooding in — nature abhors a vacuum. I felt an itch on my face and wanted to scratch it. A great title for my next book popped into my head and I wanted to write it down before I forgot it. I thought of at least four phone calls I wanted to make and one difficult conversation I was going to have later that day. I became anxious, knowing I only had a few hours of writing time. What was I doing just sitting here? I wanted to open my eyes and look at how much time was left on my countdown timer. I heard my kids fighting in the other room and wanted to intervene.  Here’s the key though: I wanted to do all those things, but I didn’t do them. Instead, every time I had one of those thoughts, I brought my attention back to my breath…(Read more)

Becky Robinson @ Weaving Influence with her post These Exact Places: I believe that there is nothing random about my path, about the people I’ve encountered, about the opportunities I’ve discovered, the places I’ve lived…Where I live, where I go, what I say, and what I do, makes a difference. Where you live, where you go, what you say, and what you do makes a difference. There are no accidents. You are exactly where you need to be, right now.” (Read more) [Read more...]

Do something

Anguish, Old Woman, Black and White, Photograph, Photo, life

“Doing nothing has consequences too.”

~ Never Back Down


Sources: Thank you creatingaquietmind for quote and liquige via madamescherzo for image.

Reach as high as you can…


And if they are chocolate chip, you’ve hit gold.


Source: Marc Johns.  Marc Johns lives with his wife, two sons, and his drawer full of pens in Victoria, BC, Canada.

Related Marc Johns Post: Sometimes the only thing left to do is…

I’m feeling like this today…

Reproduction, duplication, or usage of this image in whole, in part or as a derivative work without specific written permission by the author is forbidden by U.S. Federal Patent Law.

Source: marcdesa

Still, in the Hunt for the Holy Grail…

PrintI’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:

  • Master: 9 out of 21 (43%)
  • Journeyman: 3 out of 21 (14%)
  • Utter Failure: 9 out of 21 (43%) – Wow! Shocking.  So, my search for the Holy Grail will continue.
    You’ll find each tip below (or an excerpt) along with my grade/reaction.

[Read more...]

Pull a lever to boost performance…


Source: Adapted from Gapingvoid

4:36 am. And, Inspired…

Good Wednesday morning.  Here’s kicking off hump day with inspiring posts of the week from my favorite bloggers (including a “professional blogger’s” post this week).

Ioanna @ life portOfolio with her post Hate Words.  “Take a moment and think. Your phone rings, at the end of the line is a loved one…“Hey sweetie, my test results are out…”  The rest of the phone call can be guessed…Yes, you lose ground under your feet…

Seth Segall @ The Existential Buddhist with his postDoes All This Sitting Get Us Somewhere?  Novice meditators often ask “will all this sitting get me somewhere?” By “somewhere” they mean somewhere else than where their sitting currently gets them — countless cushion-hours accompanied by states of desire, aversion, judgment, pain, boredom, torpor, fantasy, reminiscence, doubt, planning, philosophizing — and, yes — moments of presence and clarity…We marinate in life and are cooked by it. It’s a process that happens, not something we accomplish. We didn’t build that. Things shift. We tire of hanging onto things. We cease repeating old mistakes. We laugh at ourselves. We open and soften. We come alive…

By “somewhere else” they mean their fantasy of whatever-it-was the Buddha experienced at the moment of his Enlightenment. They wonder whether they will ever have an experience like the Buddha’s…The answer is “no.” The Buddha’s experience was his own. Ours is ours. But sitting isn’t about having a spiritual experience. It’s about living a spiritual life. Sitting isn’t where the miracle occurs. Our life is the miracle. Sitting is the mirror. It’s the pot we’re cooked in.” [Read more...]

Sunday Morning: All is a miracle…

curious eyes of a child

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

Related Posts:

Weekends are for…


Source: That Girl

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You’re just another biological organism…

you are just another biological organism - funny - humor


Source: shahirzag.com

Keep crawling forward and paying attention as we go.

there is no finish line - keep going

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…

[Read more...]

Don’t call a knife a knife…

Inspire, Inspiration, Self-Help, Success, Quote, Quotation, Philosphy, Inspiration, Jonathon Safran Foer,

“It sounds simple, I know. But it’s not. Listen, there are a million worlds you could make for yourself. Everyone you know has a completely different one — the woman in 5G, that cab driver over there, you. Sure, there are overlaps, but only in the details. Some people make their worlds around what they think reality is like. They convince themselves that they had nothing to do with their worlds’ creations or continuations. Some make their worlds without knowing it. Their universes are just sesame seeds and three-day weekends and dial tones and skinned knees and physics and driftwood and emerald earrings and books dropped in bathtubs and holes in guitars and plastic and empathy and hardwood and heavy water and high black stockings and the history of the Vikings and brass and obsolescence and burnt hair and collapsed soufflés and the impossibility of not falling in love in an art museum with the person standing next to you looking at the same painting and all the other things that just happen and are. But you want to make for yourself a world that is deliberately and meticulously personalized. A theater for your life, if I could put it like that. Don’t live an accident. Don’t call a knife a knife. Live a life that has never been lived before, in which everything you experience is yours and only yours. Make accidents on purpose. Call a knife a name by which only you will recognize it. Now I’m not a very smart man, but I’m not a dumb one, either. So listen: If you can manage what I’ve told you, as `i was never able to, you will give your life meaning.”

~ Jonathon Safran Foer: “If the Aging Magician Should Begin to Believe.”


Source: atomiclanterns via vlorin

If I…

If If If If


Source: creatingaquietmind

We are the introverts…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Close.  (Excluding Michael Jackson and the entire party-part.)


Source:teachingliteracy via explore-blog

I’ll be damned, it’s been a good year…

action, hope, success, self-help, philosophy, Ray Bradbury, quote, quotation

“I don’t believe in optimism. I believe in optimal behavior. That’s a different thing. If you behave every day of your life to the top of your genetics, what can you do? Test it. Find out. You don’t know—you haven’t done it yet. You must live life at the top of your voice! At the top of your lungs shout and listen to the echoes. I learned a lesson years ago…Action is hope. At the end of each day, when you’ve done your work, you lie there and think, Well, I’ll be damned, I did this today. It doesn’t matter how good it is, or how bad—you did it. At the end of the week you’ll have a certain amount of accumulation. At the end of a year, you look back and say, I’ll be damned, it’s been a good year.”

~Ray Bradbury (answering an interviewer’s question on how important optimism has been in his career)


Let’s Go!


Source: swissmiss via Raul

Related Post: I’ve never worked a day in my life… (Ray Bradbury)

Do get brilliant…

Nicholas Bate - Work - Inspiration - Self-Help - Success - Excellence - Quote - Psychology


Author: Nicholas Bate

More Excellent posts from Nicholas Bate:

Writing better…

John Steinbeck

“If there is a magic in story writing, and I am convinced there is, no one has ever been able to reduce it to a recipe that can be passed from one person to another. The formula seems to lie solely in the aching urge of the writer to convey something he feels important to the reader. If the writer has that urge, he may sometimes, but by no means always, find the way to do it. You must perceive the excellence that makes a good story good or the errors that makes a bad story. For a bad story is only an ineffective story.” 

~ John Steinbeck

 

Other writing tips from my favorite authors:

  1. Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted. (Vonnegut)
  2. Start as close to the end as possible. (Vonnegut)
  3. Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia. (Vonnegut)
  4. Write freely and as rapidly as possible and throw the whole thing on paper. Never correct or rewrite until the whole thing is down. Rewrite in process is usually found to be an excuse for not going on. It also interferes with flow and rhythm which can only come from a kind of unconscious association with the material. (John Steinbeck)
  5. If you are using dialogue—say it aloud as you write it. Only then will it have the sound of speech. John Steinbeck
  6. Don’t over define your characters. Let the reader imagine them. (Hollinghurst)
  7. Read. Read. Read. (Hollinghurst)
  8. Know where you’re going before you start. (Hollinghurst)
  9. Leave a decent space of time between writing something and editing it. (Zadie Smith)
  10. Tell the truth through whichever veil comes to hand—but tell it. Resign yourself to the lifelong sadness that comes from never ­being satisfied. (Zadie Smith)

Sources:

Related Posts:

Stages of Procrastination…

procrastination - funny


Source: chibird via creatingaquietmind

You’ve been on my mind…

skydiving - fly - light - clouds

“You’ve been on my mind…
Quite frankly, you’re heavy. Get off.”

~ altarofthesky


Sources: Quote – creatingaquietmind. Image: marcdesa via beantz