Sunday, December 31, 2017

Get Ready for 2018

A new year is a new beginning. It is time to get rid of what you don't need in the new year and make room for a better year.

This is copied from a website you might enjoy, Advice from a 20 Something. While I'm far from a 20 something, the advice is good for all of us.

Have a better year

Have a great 2018. Make it your best yet.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Make Hope Happen in the World

We can make hope happen . First we program our minds with thoughts that the future will be better than the present because we have the power to make it so.

The future may be in the next hour, day or year. It all depends on what you want to happen. You need a clear vision or goal of what exactly "better" means. And then you need to see yourself as lead actor in you life.

Remember, every thing we do is a choice and every choice has consequences. When you decide to change your life you make choices that will move you in the direction of your vision or goal. So you DO have the power to make it so.

True. there will be obstacles, maybe setbacks, but with your eye on your goal you will keep moving toward it.

Keep thinking and feeling hopeful. Try "nexting", that is thinking and talking about the next thing, the next step, the next event, the next activity with anticipation and hopefulness. When we allow ourselves to focus on "no" and negative outcomes we lose hope. And hope gives us the energy and momentum we need to succeed.

Shane J. Lopez, Ph.D., Gallup Senior Scientist, and author of Making Hope Happen, has collaborated with other psychologists and educators around the world to research the science of hope. They found that how we think about the future  is a key determinant of success in school, work, and life determines how successful folks are. They found that hope leads to a twelve percent gain in academic performance, fourteen percent bump in workplace outcomes, and a ten percent happiness boost for hopeful people. The learned that hopeful people get  better grades in school. Hopeful salespeople sell as much product in six days as their low-hope colleagues do in seven days. And high -hope people are just plain happier than their low-hope friends.*

So hope is important for all of us. Let's make it happen in our own lives and share it with others. Imagine the world full of hopeful people and how much better it could be.

*Lopez, Shane J., Ph.D., Making Hope Happen, Create the Future You Want for Yourself and Others.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Where There Is Light There Is Hope

How hopeful are you about your future? about our country? about the world? Think about it.

We see so many tragic things in the media that it is easy to think there is nothing to look forward to. Our sense of helplessness to change the direction of our life or our country or the world can point us in the darkest of directions. We don't know that there is anything we can do. And depression is the by-product of this thinking.

But we have hope,although we deny it. The reality is that we can create our own hope. And hope matters. Hope is a choice.Hope can be learned and hope can be shared. (Making Hope Happen, Create the Future You Want for Yourself and Others  by Shane J. Lopez, Ph.D., Gallup Senior Scientist)

Hope matters. Without hope we would do nothing to make things better.

Hope is a choice. We can choose to look for ways to change things or we can sit and stew in what we deem is a hopeless situation.

Hope can be learned. We may have developed a hopeless attitude. But we can unlearn that and find the hope in everything.

Hope can be shared with others. When we express hopefulness and act on our hope we share hopefulness with others. We can create ripples of hope that spread far beyond us.

Create hope.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Where Do You Find Light?

In many lives these days there is great darkness, evil, torture, rape, violence, war, hatred. Around the world there are conflicts that bring unbearable circumstances to civilians, to women and children and the elderly, innocents caught in the midst of war and violence. We see it on the screens in our homes. And even though we ourselves are not experiencing it, it affects us.

We have our own places of darkness, past and present. Things we have experienced, may still be experiencing. We anguish over situations we cannot control. We get overwhelmed by the weight of it all - our darkness, the darkness of others, of the world. It can break our faith. It can bring us to the brink of giving up.

But we still want to make the world better. We want to make a difference in our own lives and in the lives of others. To do that we must search for light. We must overcome the darkness with light. If we see only the dark we will believe that is all there is. It is important that we find light in our lives and that we bring light into the lives of others.

What to do? Nothing. Stop struggling to find the light. Acknowledge where you are, who you are, what you are. and allow the stillness to open you to the light. Practice mindfulness. Find the light that is within you. 

This video from YouTube may help lead you.

Be the love and light that you are.  

Sunday, December 17, 2017

So Have We Lost Momentum?

It is so easy these days to feel overwhelmed and helpless to change things, to make more good things happen, to confront the conflicts, to stand up for what we believe. So we don't do much of anything to make the world better.

But it doesn't have to be like that. We don't have to simply watch what is happening in our lives and those around us. We each have a purpose.that in some way serves to make the world better. Find yours and get moving.

"This talk is designed to help people transform from being life spectators into change catalysts. Many people spend a lifetime trying to discover their personal purpose and yet few actually live a life pursuing that purpose. This talk will motivate people to act on their personal purpose in life and empower transformation."

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Happy Holy Day

"Holy Day", the origin of the word "holiday" helps define the season for many religions. No matter what faith you follow, I just want to remind you to honor the holy.

Of course we would do well to honor the holy everyday. But it is good to set aside special days to focus on the holy in our lives, in our world. There is holiness in everything if you consider it. Creation is a holy activity. Everything that is created has holiness in it.

That means all of us. We are all part of the holiness of life. Take the next few weeks and purposely look for opportunities to honor holiness in your life, in the life of those around you, in nature, in all that is. Consider what that could mean.

What might you remove from your life that clears you, that makes space for holiness?

What would life be like if more of us honored the holy in life, if we created a more holy world?

How might you live a holy life?

Be the sanctuary.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Is This The Year?

Is this the year you do holiday gifting differently? Or will you still give gifts the recipient doesn't need and may not even want? Will you spend more money than you can afford doing it?

Or will you give to charity in honor of your friends and family, like the Heifer Project, Plan International, and Save the Children? Did you know you can make a real difference in someone's life for as little as $15?

Why not buy a smaller gift for your family and friends and give a donation to someone who really needs it? We like to do that and then clip the descriptions of the donations and put it with the small gifts that we wrap.

It makes a difference in someone's life who has so much less than my family. And it teaches my family about giving differently. Recently my daughter said what she wanted me to do for her birthday was to donate winter scarves to the homeless. I think she gets it!

Check out  ,, and as examples.

Give 'til it helps!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

You Choose

Choices, we make them all day every day. And the choices we make determine what happens next. Our present is a result of choices we've made before this moment. Think about it.

This morning you chose to get out of bed. You may not have wanted to get out of bed, but you chose to because doing so would bring you closer to something you want or would help you avoid negative consequences. It is this that makes every behavior a choice.

Making a decision is often so natural, habitual, or subtle that we think we didn't even make the decision. But when you come right down to it, every behavior is a choice. And each choice creates what happens in our life. We either move toward our goals or or away from them.

When I worked as a counselor with prison inmates they had trouble with the idea that they chose to be in prison. But even if they weren't guilty of the crime they were convicted for, their lifestyle, the people in their lives, their financial status, everything was a result of a string of choices that ended up with them being in prison. And how they dealt with incarceration was also a choice, their personal power.

So it is with all of us. Thankfully, we can make different choices and get right back on track. Like driving in the city, you make a wrong turn and just have to go around the block to get back toward your destination.

What destination do you want? Are your choices moving you toward it or away from it?

You think YOUR choices are hard? Check out this 3 minute video:

Sunday, December 3, 2017

December, The Month of Giving

Lots of gift-giving in December. This year pay attention to what and to whom you give. Consider this month as a time to develop a regular giving attitude to carry though the new year. Make every month a giving month.

I know you will be giving holiday gifts to your friends and family. Try lifting you eyes a bit higher, look a bit farther. Who might NEED a gift? What can you give to someone who is beyond your family and friends. Consider doing something for someone who is elderly and has few family and friends; someone who is struggling to make ends meet, maybe unemployed; someone who is homeless. You get the idea.

Consider using your talents or skills for someone who needs something you could do. Take some time (half an hour) to listen to Les Brown talk about giving.