Month: December 2016

Daily Inspiration 12-31-16

“Cherish forever 
what makes you unique, 
‘cuz you’re really a yawn if it goes.” 

— Bette Midler 

The last day of 2016 is here, and rather than looking back and seeing what we did or didn’t do, made or didn’t make, changed or didn’t change, let us simply be ourselves, and enjoy the entire journey we have all been on individually and collectively. And, to help this idea along, I’m offering some words of wisdom and joy from Abraham, Esther Hicks, who never fail to inspire me every single day:

“If we were standing in your physical shoes, that would be our dominant quest: Entertaining Yourself, pleasing Yourself, connecting with Yourself, being Yourself, enjoying Yourself, loving Yourself. Some say, “Well, Abraham you teach selfishness.” And we say, yes we do, yes we do, yes we do, because unless you are selfish enough to reach for that connection, you don’t have anything to give anyone, anyway. And when you are selfish enough to make that connection–you have an enormous gift that you give everywhere you go.” 

And, here’s a little more from them as icing on the cake:

“You didn’t come here to fix things that are broken, or to know things you don’t know. You came because life on the path of least resistance is a delicious state of being. And you are in love with life, and you are in love with you, and you are in love with being in love with life.” 

I hope that this day, along with all the ones before, and all that you intend to experience moving forward are days that bring you ever-increasing joy.

Struggle Is Not Required Or Desired. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by letting go of all that hides your joy. It’s in there.

Daily Inspiration 12-30-16

“Great things are done 
by a series of small things 
brought together.” 

— Vincent Van Gogh 

I was thinking this morning that there is a financial term called depreciation. It is the purposeful reduction of a so-called asset to charge off income to reduce the tax burden the net revenue demands. This term can be used in a lot of ways, and in all ways, it is making something less. We are said to be depreciating something.

Another financial term is appreciation. Something goes up in value, perhaps increasing assets, whether in real money or on paper. This term can be used in a lot of ways also, and in all ways, it is making something more, or acknowledging the value of something that perhaps we had not noticed before. We are then said to be appreciating.

How many times, or how many days does one have to do something for it to become a habit. I’ve heard and read many times that it is about 21 days, and some say about 30 days, but it can happen quicker and also slower than this. I think it has more to do with intention mixed with a smidgen of will power.

So I thought if a person is habitually in a state of depreciation, or I could say, finding fault, seeing what is wrong, in general seeing a lot of life as a glass half empty, how would they reverse this state of depreciation and turn it into a state of appreciation? And, the answer was that it has to do with an intention mixed with a smidgen of will power, and a commitment to do for a selected period as a test, if nothing else, that it can be done.

Of course, the easy way to know where we are is how we feel most of the time. Someone who is in a state of depreciation, finding fault with many things throughout the day, will notice that they do not feel very good. In fact, probably not good at all, and someone in a state of appreciation will always be feeling pretty dang good. An easy way to decide is simply to ask how I want to feel? Good or crappy? Hmm.

Here’s an example. I’m up and in my sweats and at 6:20 am I decide I want a sausage egg sandwich and a latte from Starbucks. I get in the truck and drive to Suisun City, less than two miles away. It’s 36 degrees according to my truck temperature gauge. It’s dark. I stop for a guy who just got off a bus and is standing on the corner at the crosswalk. He stands there. Then, I drive on. But, I stopped. That felt good, even though he wasn’t really ready. He only looked the part. I turn the corner, and a train is coming, and the train crossing guards come down. I watch the train. It’s interesting. I enjoy the little drive to Starbucks, place my order, and drive out. All the while on this drive so far, I am so enjoying my 15-year old truck. It runs like a top, and I love it. It feels good.

On the way back, I pass an apartment complex–well, two actually. Many years back, all the larger apartment complexes around here put up black iron fences and gates. I don’t know if it was to keep them in or keep others out, but they cannot be missed. The second one was bought out by some company that completely renovated the complex and changed the name. They are obviously different. They painted the fence bright orange, along with all the balcony fences, and front doors. It’s bold, and obviously, cannot be missed. I am in appreciation of their creativity, their taking care of the property, making it better for the renters, and demonstrating that they appreciate the complex too. And, I think the orange against the brown buildings is quite attractive.

I could go on, but this is a perfect example of being in a state of appreciation. I am looking for things to appreciate, and I am feeling good. That old negative self-talk is on hold. I am in charge of my thoughts and my observations this morning, and I do this all the time now. It has become habitual. It doesn’t matter how insignificant a thing that I find appreciation for was, it is now significant. It requires no will power anymore, and it didn’t require very much, to begin with.

So, here’s a resolution worth keeping: Move into a state of appreciation. It will change your life. Guaranteed.

What State Do I Live In? Appreciation. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by finding perfection rather than fault.

Daily Inspiration 12-29-16

“It’s not your partner’s job 
to be more lovable. 
It’s your job 
to be more loving.” 

— Barbara DeAngelis 

So true, and this short bit of wisdom took me so many years to truly understand. I don’t think it was until I began studying the many authors in The Secret, most notably, the Teachings of Abraham beginning in 2007, that I began to accept, and then fully accepting this premise.

My relationships, especially marriage and other romantic relationships, adding in my relationships with those above me in my employment travels, were probably what many call normal: People do what they do and you wish they wouldn’t, you want better, you want them to treat you better, give you more respect and appreciation for busting my ass for them and not getting my ‘fair share’ of the spoils, and the list is so long that I would lament on it just about every day in one way or another, and if not vocally, in my constant mental talk. It’s the classic idea that what is wrong is outside of myself, and no matter what I do, I keep getting the short end of the stick. Boo-hoo.

Sure, I tried to make the best of it–don’t we all? But, as positive as I tried to be, my inner world was one of massive negativity. I can see it so clearly in looking in the rearview mirror. I was never happy. I was pleasant, respectful (most of the time), and as easy-going as I could muster, but happy? Not really. Joy? What is that?

Of course, what I learned in my studies was that it wasn’t them. It wasn’t my wife. It wasn’t my boss. It wasn’t the government. It wasn’t anything outside of myself. And, this was the hard revelation: It was ME. As much as I didn’t want it to be me, or my fault, or my problem, or my world–too bad. It was. It is. It will always be. Then I was reminded of one of The Eagles songs that I took to heart: Get Over It. And, so I began to let go and find a more effective perspective.

Expecting anyone else regardless of our relationship to be something for me, or to act in a pleasing way to me, or to treat me in a certain way, is something that I now understand is truly pointless. If I want my wife to love me more or show me more love, I have to be the one doing that instead of putting that expectation on her or on my boss, or on any other. I had to learn something I was told way back in the early 1970s: Own your own feelings. Back then I didn’t really get that in the way I get it now. And, it took a long journey to get there, but life is all about the journey, right? I learned it. I began living it, and now it is part of me.

I was tested by fire during the last two years of my wife’s terminal illness, and I learned more about unconditional love than I ever had. As well, I learned more about patience than I had ever known. I couldn’t change her or how she felt, or how she treated me, but I could choose to let go of all of that and just love her, accept her as she was then, appreciate all that had been in the 26 years we were together. I found cracks in my relatively new perspective and strengthened my resolve to let go of what was outside of me, and choose to love, to be at peace, and even to find joy.

If you are anything like I was, expecting much from others, disappointed when they are not as I want them to be, I hope this personal message helps, even if it only opens the tiniest crack to get started. It will change your life for the better, as it has truly healed my own. My perspective is now as if I am looking at the world from space, rather than the cracks in the sidewalk, and I now truly love without condition.

If It Isn’t Working, Try A Different Perspective. Life Is Meant To Be Joyful. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by releasing your need for others to be anything other than they already are.

Daily Inspiration 12-28-16

“I’m glad I’ve been handsomely paid for my efforts, 
but I truly would have done it for free–because I had to. 
It was the only way I found momentary release 
and the purpose I was looking for.” 

— Bruce Springsteen, 
from his new book, Born To Run 

Our internal guidance–that inner knowing, can guide us perfectly as we acknowledge it and pay attention to how we feel as we consider it. Here’s something Wayne Dyer has said on this subject:

“There has been invisible guidance there for me each and every step of the way, just as there is for you as well. In order to access that guidance, I encourage you to make a commitment to be absolutely faithful to that which exists nowhere but within yourself. This is the great secret for seeing ever more clearly and living your life from a place of passion and purpose.” 

You’ve heard the phrase, “you gotta do what you gotta do,” right? Most often, that is the inner drive people refer to the moves a person along a path that works best for them, though it may not always be the clearest signal, and yet, the more we listen to it, feel it, and respond to it, the clearer it gets.

I even talk to it–just like I’m talking to God, because, I think it is. Sometimes I think I don’t really know anything, so I am always open to guidance. In fact, the older I get and the more I have learned, the more I see I do not know. But, I believe that my inner guidance knows all, and thank goodness it doesn’t dump it all on me, but nudges me along as Wayne said, each step along the way.

You aren’t sure what you want? Perfect. Talk to your inner guidance. Say, “please show me what I want next. I’m ready to listen!” I think we all have intentions, and with all that is going on all around us, we sort of lose track from time to time. No problem. My inner guidance will help keep me on the right track!

There’s something to be said for letting go and giving control to our higher power. This doesn’t mean that we have lost our way, or that we are giving up our freedom of choice. It simply means that we are trusting in the greater knowing of my chosen intentions, which might be feeling a little cloudy at the moment, but soon enough after releasing control, I’m guided to the next logical step, and then the next.

I Love That I Am Never Alone In My Travels! 

Spread Some Joy Today–by allowing more, releasing more, loving more.

Daily Inspiration 12-27-16

“Your task is not to seek for love, 
but merely to seek and find 
all the barriers within yourself 
that you have built against it.” 

— Rumi 

So many of us begin building barriers to love at a very young age. We may be doing it as a way of survival, protecting ourselves, and a long list of other great reasons, and so there they are, protecting us, shielding us, from some perceived ill.

Barriers are just resistance, and so understanding this makes it easier to see the real issue. Resistance always intends to protect, and yet at the same time does not allow the things and feelings that we truly want, like love.

Abraham, Esther Hicks says that resistance is the only real issue we have in a joyous life. They say that our natural state is one of well-being, and that resistance, which comes in so many forms, is simply a cover-up to that natural state. All the love we could ever desire is there, and yet it is buried under the debris of our resistance.

We talk about stuffing feelings, and when I think about it that way it is easy to see how layer upon layer of resistance covers our wellness in many different ways, including physical and mental states.

These layers of resistance cause hardship. We fight to get loose and as we fight, we only add to it. It is like trying to find peace by having war. But, the way out is not struggle. It is ease.

From Abraham, Esther Hicks: “Most rarely align with their true power, because it seems illogical to them that there is power in relaxation, in letting go, or in love or joy or bliss. Most people do not understand that their true power lies in releasing resistance–which is the only obstacle to their true power.” 

And they add, “There are so many things that you have been taught to believe that are counter to the powerful Laws of the Universe that it is difficult for you to think your way out.” 

Trying to think our way out is the same thing as trying to figure out how we can get what we want, wondering why this is happening to me, lamenting about all the roadblocks that seem to be in the path, and these are all loaded with resistance, which, as Abraham stated, is the only obstacle to our true power.

The only answer remains. Ease. Release. Letting go of the rope. Relaxing into our always connected, though perhaps not recognized Spirit within. The best love we could ever imagine is inside each and every one of us all the time. We only need to let go of all of the barriers we have built for self-preservation, releasing all of that resistance we have built layer upon layer over the years, and there is the love beyond all expectation, right there where it has always been.

Forget Original Sin. It Is Original Love. And, It Is And Has Always Been There. Ready. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by following your bliss wherever it leads.

Daily Inspiration 12-26-16

“Love makes no comparisons.” 
— A Course in Miracles 

Ever heard the phrase, “I love you more?” More than what? More than whom? Does that mean that everyone gets a different amount of love as if it were a commodity that is divided among the chosen ones?

Conditional love is full of comparisons, judgment, expectation. But real love which is unconditional love–we could say it is love with a big “L”–has zero expectations, judgment, or expectations. It compares none, for there is no comparison.

Another way to see this is full acceptance. There is no wish that the other be better in any way for they are loved as they are, and as they will be, and as they have been. It matters not anything about their choices, they are simply loved.

And here’s another insight. When someone loves without condition, there is no thought of reciprocity. It is given. It requires nothing. It seeks nothing. It simply is.

How can you love someone who is so different from us or makes what we might call terrible choices, or lives a damaging lifestyle? There is only one way. We must let go of our conditions.

This is also true of the people we do like, that live a life we admire and respect, and that makes choices that are good in our opinion. Are we loving them without condition, or are we loving them until they change? When they are easy to love, they are easy to not love too. But, as we love them without condition, we open ourselves to the opportunity to love anyone as we choose.

Of course, adding people to a list is sort of conditional in its own way, but as we expand into accepting fully all human beings, and all of creation, we might have just an inkling of what the Love of God truly is.

Love Makes No Comparisons. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by allowing all in the world choose as they will and find joy in that release.

Daily Inspiration 12-25-16

“To the American People: 

Christmas is not a time or a season 
but a state of mind. 

To cherish peace and good will, 
to be plenteous in mercy, 
is to have the real spirit of Christmas. 

If we think on these things, 
there will be born in us a Savior 
and over us will shine a star 
sending its gleam of hope to the world.” 

— Presidential Message, December 25, 1927
Calvin Coolidge 

In the world of commerce, Christmas is absolutely a season, and for the retailer, it is the biggest and best season of the year. Of course, this is easy enough to see visually by just driving by any mall in the United States in the last two weeks. And it isn’t over yet. The biggest shopping day of the year even surpassing Black Friday, is often the day after Christmas.

It’s easy to associate commerce and Christmas, and it cannot be discounted that it matters in this way to an awful lot of people buying and selling at the flood point of business meeting opportunity. So be it.

All of that is okay, but to me over the years, Christmas has come to mean more and at the same time less. It means less because the idea of buying lots of presents has left me. I have less and less interest in participating in the commerce, though this is only personal and not an attack on the commercial aspect of the season.

As physical things go, I enjoy the colorful lights on houses and trees and bushes, the tree, real or artificial indoors with dressings all around the room, the smell of cinnamon in the Scentsy warmer, champagne, special foods. But, they are not required.

It means more to me because it is all about matters of the heart. All the other stuff just described is matters of the mind, but Christmas is all about the heart to me. It is love, appreciation, generosity, joy, dignity, and respect. It is about peace within and without. It is about harmony, choosing and allowing. And, of all of these, it is completely embodied in one word overall, and that is love. 

Many years ago now, I took a statement by Charles Dickens to my own heart. He said, “I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.” This I have done and continue to do every single day of the year.

From My Heart To Yours. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by relaxing into it, as it is always there and ready.

Daily Inspiration 12-24-16

“In the old days, it was not called the Holiday Season;
the Christians called it ‘Christmas’ and went to church;
the Jews called it ‘Hanukkah’ and went to synagogue;
the atheists went to parties and drank.
People passing each other on the street would say,
‘Merry Christmas!’ or ‘Happy Hanukkah!’
or (to the atheists) ‘Look out for the wall!'”

— Dave Barry

[Classic post from 12-24-10]
I saw this quote a week or so ago and thought it was very funny. . . look out for the wall. . . that’s funny stuff. So, I never thought seriously about using it until tonight.
I was at a local event where people gathered and many of the same people come to this event. I was there early, and greeted people coming in and said ‘Merry Christmas!’ to all that I greeted. A gentleman who is a regular, after my greeting, said something odd that I cannot remember, but it was curious. I just had the impression that he was not interested in Christmas because it is a religious holiday. But, I didn’t think much of it as I like this gentleman and I was glad to see him.
A few minutes later, it was getting full in the area we were in and a woman came in with two friends and they were joyous and greeting some of the other people they know and this woman greeted this man, and said ‘Merry Christmas,’ and I didn’t hear it directly, but later found out that he said, ‘why don’t you leave Christ out of it!’ Well, this lady loudly called him an a**hole, which got everyone’s attention. He seemed a bit embarrassed, but she was obviously mad. Then her friend was mad and fuming about his remark and so on.
What do you think of that scenario? I think it is interesting. Her comments certainly are an argument, but is that a strange way to defend Christ or Christianity? I think it is strange and also extremely ineffective. I guess the quote with Dave Barry is another way, and although way funnier, may still be a strange way.
Maybe this is a better way:
“May you have the gladness of Christmas which is hope;
The spirit of Christmas which is peace;
The heart of Christmas which is love.”
— Ada V Hendricks
“But Now Abide Faith, Hope, Love, These Three; But The Greatest Of These Is Love.” — 1 Corinthians 13:13, The Bible
Spread Some Joy Today–Love is always the better way.

Daily Inspiration 12-23-16

“It is really not a good idea 
to encourage your friends 
to complain about things to you. 
There is no value in assisting anyone 
to describe, in detail, 
their unhappy experiences.” 

— Abraham, Esther Hicks 

Or to share our own with others. . .

Have you ever shared complaints about something in your own life, such as, maybe how you are feeling, how upset you are about some situation or any number of things that are easy to complain about? Of course. Who hasn’t?

But, here’s a better question: Has that ever really helped you? Has it ever solved the situation? I think what would be more likely is that it would expand the problem. So, instead of letting go of it in the sharing of it with someone else, now they add to your troubles by sharing theirs, or their advice on yours, and more. It expands even though what you really wanted was to offload it. In other words, now is is bigger, more important, and even perhaps justified, and it is still in your possession.

I like how Simone Weil adds value here: “We must not wish for the disappearance of our troubles but for the grace to transform them.” 

How do we do that? We do it by letting go. Some say, let go and let God. That which is larger than all of the life we see here, whatever you want to call that can certainly and absolutely accept our unwanted problems. Just let go of it. Sharing it is holding on to it. Thinking about it is holding on to it.

Realize that every problem that we think we have is in our mind. It wouldn’t be a problem if we couldn’t think about it, perceive it, communicate it, feel it, experience it, and all of that comes from the mind.

We have the opportunity to transform it by how we will think about it.

We love quotes because they often have valuable wisdom or insight. I was thinking this morning: What is the value of someone else’s wisdom? To me, there is only one possible answer: To lead me to my own wisdom. To open the door to my own secrets, passion, desires, decisions. They don’t do it for me, I always do it myself. I might follow advice, but in every case, it leads me to my own power.

I was just sharing something about this the other day, and it kind of amazed me that it came out the way it did. I said something like this: “Awareness of the resistance that we are feeling is key. In recognizing it as being there, we can then let go of it, just as we would let go of a rope we were holding on to, and in letting go, we come back to our power.” 

Sure, I’ve read it, listened to it, studied it for a long time, but that led me to my own wisdom, my own power. You could say that it is no longer something learned, but that it is now a complete part of me.

Now during the day, I find myself aware that my mind is a tool, but that I am not my mind, and that any problem that I have, whether physical or non-physical, it is my mind that is creating and expanding the problem. I then, pay attention to how I feel. I can immediately feel tension. I realize that right now is the time to let go of that rope. I don’t share the problem with anyone, I just let them go one at a time as they come up, and I watch them sail into the sunset.

I Am The Sole Owner Of My Problems AND My Joy. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by realizing that joy is in your complete control, any time, any place, with infinite levels.

Daily Inspiration 12-22-16

“Society evolves 
not by shouting each other down, 
but by the unique capacity 
of unique, individual human beings 
to comprehend each other.” 

— Lewis Thomas 

Yesterday was a very enjoyable and interesting day. It ended up being 13 hours from 5:30am to 6:30pm, and being involved with a whole team of people in 6 different smaller group meetings where I was to answer any questions they may have that my experience could cover.

I was surprised and pleased with some of my answers and suggestions–surprised because many things I said doesn’t normally find its way into this sort of teaching environment, and pleased because of where I have arrived in my life travels.

These wonderful folks were every different part of a so-called technological company offering a software solution to a unique market. In fact, it has revolutionized that market with their product and service, which they are constantly improving as they grow. Some were in direct sales, others behind the scenes never talking directly to a client, others developing software expansion and enhancement, others were inside sales follow-up and more.

Two things I said yesterday to virtually all of the groups that stood out from my perspective were these:

1. Stop thinking and using the word, ‘technology.’ I’m in the technological business too, but I never use that word. It scares most people, though they may never say so. In understanding your technology, find simple ways to explain things that anyone can absorb and feel good about. In other words, we don’t supply this and that and that and this and here’s how it works and here’s the benefits, but we have some tools that can multiply your own successful efforts, and we do most of it without you lifting a finger. Which one of those would you want?

2. We’re all the same and yet we are all different. Let go of the rope. As individual humans, we have this tendency to try to change others and the majority of them resist change. We need to love people right where they are, play with getting to know them and building a meaningful relationship with them, help them when we can, and leave them alone when that is desired. Many questions were such as, “how can we get them to see this? How can we get them to do this? How can we help them to see the value? How can we have them use our product more fully? I totally get all of that. Yet, in most of this, there is a whole bunch of resistance. We get tense, our muscles contract, our breath is shorter, our heart beats faster. We’re holding on to the rope. We need to remember to let go when we feel this way. It’s okay. Whatever it is, it is. For now. Lighten up.

This doesn’t mean to not do your best. It means to put yourself in the other person’s shoes. We can all give plenty of advice on what we would do if we were them, and as we consider this, we become frustrated that the client or prospect is not responding as desired, or maybe has even gone radio silent. Praise them in your mind. Lift them up. Love them where they are, and love yourself where you are. You’re doing your best. That is enough. Let the rest of it go.

It’s good to enjoy what you do when you are spending all day doing it. If not, all kinds of ills are nearby. Back up. Take a new approach. Let go for a while and come back later. Respect people for making their own choices whether we think it serves them or not. We cannot think for them, or feel for them. The best we can do to be of service is to love people where they are while loving ourselves, and enjoying our own travels.

Though these are a couple of things that stood out for me during my day there, I am not yet privy to what if anything stood out for them. That part isn’t up to me, is it? Yet I’m confident an equivalent value exchange took place.

Business Is NOT Business. Business IS People. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by letting go of the rope every single time you feel the least bit tense. This act automatically releases spurts of joy.

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