Category: Respect

Choosing To Live In Fear Or Love

“Anxiety is love’s greatest killer. It makes others feel
as you might when a drowning man holds on to you.
You want to save him, but you know he will
strangle you with his panic.”
 
— Anais Nin
 
 
 
[Classic post from 6-9-11]
 
When people give me an argument, I do my best to answer it with common sense or learned knowledge, and if they persist, I may swim upstream with them a stroke or two, then I will suddenly let go and float away downstream relaxing in my peace and calm.
 
I was talking with a prospect the other day who is the owner of a small business. He expressed some fear of the Internet, in particular, social media and specifically, Facebook. He told me a short story, then another. I tried sense. He told another. Finally, I turned to him and said matter-of-factly, “if you are afraid of the Internet, then I suggest that you avoid the Internet and keep doing what you are doing now.” Then he started another fearful story, and I said, “whatever is on the Internet is not private, so if you are fearful of what goes on in the Internet world, stay out of it; however, I suggest the alternative of getting over it so you can use the medium to grow your business effectively.”
 
I could see he had some more stories ready for me, but I wasn’t having any of it. I said goodbye politely and left. If people don’t want to swim or don’t know how they should stay out of the water. The alternative is getting in or taking lessons and getting on with life.
 
I absolutely love the Internet. I think it is tantamount to the greatest invention of all time–certainly, it is in terms of information being widely and freely available to all. So, to me, it is extremely beneficial and valuable. To some, it is something to fear and tell stories about, but then again, I feel they have a propensity to do that without the influence of the Internet. How we think about things affects and creates our own world.
 
 
Live In Fear, Or Live In Love. We All Get To Choose.
 
Spread Some Joy Today–Listen to the stories you tell others. If it’s not uplifting, tell a new story. If you don’t know one, make one up.

Loving Things In Our Own Special Way

“I still get wildly enthusiastic
about little things. . .
I play with leaves.
I skip down the street
and run against the wind.”
 
— Leo Buscaglia
 
 
 
 
 
[Classic post from 11-30-11]
 
I love this time of year. It’s just a bit chilly, highs in the low 60’s, lows around 40, a touch of fog in the morning, sun in the afternoon. Leaves are taking their sweet time turning colors other than green, then falling gently to the ground, and right about now they are coming down in the thousands as you can see by the sidewalk in the photo.
 
I took Charlie the little black dog out for a walk and he’s not nearly as fond of this time of year as me. I had to take a photo of some of the huge leaves that are as big as he is, and he is afraid of them when the wind moves them around, especially when the wind moves them toward him. If it is calm, he’s brave enough though, yet he would rather walk around them than over them whenever that option is available.
 
I read a Leo Buscaglia book way back in the 1970s about him having a class over at his house and his neighbor coming over to complain about the leaves on his lawn. So the lover that he is, invited guests to help rake the leaves into bags and he brought them into the house and spread them all over the living room floor. Everyone was happy then.
 
I’ve always remembered that story, although I cannot remember which book, nor can I find it. So, out and about a day or two ago, I took some shots on my camera phone of some of these leaves all over the walkway. I wanted to sweep them up and put them all over the living room floor at my house. Of course, that would never work unless I lived alone.
 
Yet, I love leaves. I love seeing them all over the patio and driveway and have no interest in blowing them away or raking them up. In fact, I am done with the lawn mowing and now all the leaves that are there will remain until spring. It’s winter food for the nightcrawlers and I love watching them gather them into piles and feast on them while I sleep.
 
Other people prefer clean walkways, clean patios and all that. I’m happy for them that they like those things, but I just don’t share that feeling. The leaves add character, color, and a comfortable, relaxing view, even enhancing the concrete as far as I’m concerned.
 
So, I thank Leo every year about now for sharing that wonderful and enduring story. Thanks, Leo! I love you!
 
 
We All Love Things In Our Own Special Way
 
Spread Some Joy Today–How are you doing on your love list? Remember? Write, ‘I love. . .’ at the top of the page and then write as many things as you can, then add a few each day or each week. It’s fun and expands your joy rather easily.

A Spirit Of Approval

 
“I have yet to find a man, however, exalted his station,
who did not do better work and put forth greater effort
under a spirit of approval than under a spirit of criticism.”
 
— Charles M Schwab
 
 
“There is more hunger for love and
appreciation in this world than for bread.”
 
— Mother Teresa
 
 
 
 
[Classic post from 1-22-11]
 
Having studied Andrew Carnegie for some time, it is impossible to miss getting to know his right-hand man, Charles M Schwab. In fact, there is a book very much worth reading about Mr. Schwab called Steel Titan. In getting to know Charles Schwab, it was clear that he was an artist at dealing with people and he was famous for getting people to do things well through a spirit of approval instead of a spirit of criticism.
 
Love and appreciation have to be at or nearest the top of what people really want in virtually every situation. That subject is the basis for one of the world's most helpful books, How To Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. It is also a must-read that never will go out of style and is full of value to the reader.
 
When I saw these two quotes together, I thought about these three leaders, and I also thought about the need and desire for approval that we all have. I thought about it specifically about myself and my own desire for approval that was a driving force in my life. What I realized in looking at this is that most of my life I felt that I was lacking in enough or the proper approval and I used to find that frustrating. At some point in the very recent past, I've let go of the need for it. It's not that I don't appreciate it when it is given to me, it's just that I no longer crave it as I did before.
 
What's also interesting to realize is that the need for approval has dissipated since I decided to give it to others everywhere I go. It might be an approving glance, a thank you spoken aloud, saying I love you aloud, showing love by doing something courteous or nice or unexpected. I just sent notes to people out of the blue to tell them I was thinking of them and was appreciating them, and those are always very well received. I am always looking at what I can compliment someone on. Maybe they have a new hair style, have lost weight, look especially sharp that day, have a wonderful smile, exude confidence. I seem to always find something to compliment people on and they just love it.
 
And, guess what? Now that I'm not looking for it for myself and giving it away in droves, I find that I feel more love every day, so in effect, it is coming back to me in greater quantity. Who knew?
 
 
Focus On Others For Your Own Benefit.
 
Spread Some Joy Today–there is such joy in spreading it around you.

What We Pray For. What We May Receive.

“Let me ask you something.
If someone prays for patience,
do you think God gives them patience?
Or does He give them the opportunity to be patient?
If he prayed for courage,
does God give him courage,
or does He give him opportunities to be courageous?
If someone prayed for the family to be closer,
do you think God zaps them with warm fuzzy feelings,
or does He give them opportunities to love each other?”
 
— God
as played by Morgan Freeman
in the movie, Evan Almighty
 
 
 
 
[Classic post from 1-31-11]
 
Do we just give our kids money, or do we show them ways to earn it and thereby have some respect for it and understand value more clearly? Do we allow our children, our sales staff, our employees to learn by allowing them to make mistakes so they can learn better ways? Or, do we step in and do it for them, so that we know it is done according to our own plan regardless of how little they learn that way?
 
Or, how about ourselves? Are we longing for the easy way, when we know full well that the other way will create a foundation to step up on? Are we looking for a savior?
 
If you were starting up a company from scratch and using your own capital or bootstrapping it, would you constantly long for enough money to pay people and be done with the struggle? Or might the struggle have some of the most valuable lessons of the whole journey?
 
I used to long for all those savior moments, wanting it to be over and someone else to do the work or make things happen. Then recently, something changed. All of a sudden, it became clear to me that these things weren’t struggles at all. It was just a challenge to be able to view it differently; more creatively. Then, it became even more clear that it was not even so much of a challenge as an advantage. Now, just look at that transition! Did it go from a struggle to a challenge to an advantage? Maybe I’m losing it!
 
Truly, I’m beginning to see some of the things that I go through in my business and my personal life as advantages instead of the struggles that once were. It is this change in thinking that I am so very excited about because it is showing me the value of travel that I would have never seen otherwise.
 
I now know for certain that it is all perfect.
 
 
I Now Have An Advantage: My New Perspective.
 
Spread Some Joy Today–Everything is really how you perceive it. We indeed create our own individual realities.

Asking Better For More Pleasing Results

“Successful people
ask better questions,
and as a result,
they get better answers.” 

— Tony Robbins 

[New post]

This is a great quote and I would take it one step farther and say, they also get better results.

Here’s a bit of advice that I learned essentially from Tony Robbins in an around about way and it has to do with greater relationship harmony over time. How one person in the relationship asks the other a question is telling in the feeling and the results too. These questions often contain unspoken and predetermined expectations of the correct, or desired answer, and when not answered as expected or desired, can be quite dissatisfying. 

Let’s take an example of say, a spouse wanting to go to an event of some kind. A common question would be, “do you want to go to the __________ (or want to go do…)? Now, here’s a clue: the questioner has no idea what mayhem is going on inside the other person’s head right now and so there is a definite expectation by the asker to get a positive answer, and then they will feel good. But, if there is a negative answer or wishy-washy answer, a list of reasons or excuses which may often be the case, those questioner expectations are dead on arrival. Next may or may not be the dance around the fire calling on the positive expectation gods hearing something like, “why not?” and other hopelessly defensive maneuvers all ending in lousy feelings and missed expectations. The respondent may realize they are in dangerous territory here and suddenly let go of their wishy-washy reasons and excuses and try to back up, regroup, and start over with an answer that may satisfy and all of them to escape the minefield they have co-created.

Questions to another expecting them to agree with our unspoken desires is always a challenge. Yet, if we learn, as I have, and yet am very much a practicing work in progress–if we learn to ask these kinds of questions in a way that calls for a much more beneficial response, it might go like this: “I want to go to the __________ on Thursday at 8 pm. I would love for you to go with me. Will you come?” It could also be more demonstrative and yet generous by saying, “I have decided to (or I am going to) go the _____________on Thursday at 8 pm. I love this event and would love it if you would come with me.”

The difference between the questions in the first of the two previous paragraphs and the second is similar and yet so far apart as to be on different planets. The first may and often does create issues, roadblocks, defensive behavior, and more. The second has an entirely different feeling and a far better result. It creates agreement, participation, good feelings, let alone the idea that the respondent is honored and allowed to make a decision in a much more fluid way.

Just imagine all the ways you have been asking the other, how that feels, and what kind of results are attained. Now try changing your method if you like and watch the difference. I predict you will be amazed.

Habitual Appreciation

“To say, “well done” to any bit of good work
is to take hold of the powers which have made the effort
and strengthen them beyond our knowledge!”
 
— Phillips Brooks
 
 
 
[Classic post from 12-21-11]
 
Some time back, I gave up on big changes, looking for epiphanies as life changers. Tonight I realized something profound in the smallest of changes that become a seriously powerful agent for positive change–appreciation and praise. Now, I’ve known this for some time, so it really isn’t new, but what I realized tonight was that I have begun doing it as a habit instead of consciously deciding to do it. I realized that I was doing it as I became conscious of my doing it. I can’t tell you how powerful that is–to be doing in unconsciously as a matter of course.
 
Those cartoons in the newspaper when I was young that had a chaotic situation going on with the caption, ‘What’s wrong with this picture?’ along with other things like that including teaching by parents, etc., created this idea to find things that were wrong or seemingly out of place and then focus on those. It is one of the least powerful things we can do and it creates a world that is full of flaws and always in need of repair.
 
A far better scenario is to find the things that are worthy of appreciation and praise and they would be in serious quantity with a bit of practice. Tonight I was just driving across town about 2 miles on my way home and I was appreciating and praising all the way home about how nice the new building looks where there was something not nearly so nice before, how this improved and that, how much I enjoyed the blue sky, the truck I was driving, the amazing transportation most of us have, how long some businesses have been around and still doing their thing and so much more. It was kind of amazing to catch myself in this rampage of appreciation.
 
How fun! How rewarding!
 
 
Isn’t That The Real Value Of Practice? To Get So That You Don’t Even Think Much About It Anymore?
 
Spread Some Joy Today–Begin practicing appreciation of things in your life today at work, while you’re out and about, at home, about the world in general. Do this often and watch the change in you!

Kind Words Don’t Cost Yet Are So Valuable

“Kind words do not cost much…
Yet they accomplish.”
 
— Blaise Pascal
 
 
 
[Classic post from 12-23-11]
 
On a long driving trip, we stopped at a chain burger place and placed our order. The order came out a bit slower than it might normally and there were other people in line, yet this young man who took the order was unfazed, calm, cool, and collected.
 
After we enjoyed our food, I decided to walk over and get that employee's attention and say something to him. What I said was this, “I just wanted to let you know that when we were in line and you took our order, I felt there was an aura about you that spoke calm confidence, and I can tell you that that is one super quality for managers. Keep up the good work.”
 
He wasn't a manager. . . yet, but I was impressed in such a short few moments. So how did he take it? He was beaming as if I just made his day and he thanked me.
 
The reason I tell this little story is that you probably have done as I have and have had people impress us in one way or another and then in our busyness, we move along and do nothing. Maybe we thought about saying something, but doing it is way more interesting than just thinking about it.
 
I've begun doing this quite often with almost identical results, and it is so rewarding to the one I tell and to me as well. Yet, I don't do it for me. It's fun. Try it. Next time someone impresses you, or there is just something that you feel is special about them, let them know. See what happens.
 
 
Reach Out And Touch Someone!
 
Spread Some Joy Today–Always keep a keen eye for any opportunity at any kind of appreciation, however insignificant it may seem on first thought. Then appreciate liberally.

Understanding Faith and Sharing Joy

“We shall see but a little way if we
require to understand what we see.”

— Henry David Thoreau

“I know this world is ruled by infinite intelligence.
Everything that surrounds us–everything that exists–
proves that there are infinite laws behind it.
There can be no denying this fact.
It is mathematical in its precision.”

— Thomas A Edison

“Faith Is Not Belief Without Proof,
But Trust Without Reservations.” 

— Elton Trueblood

Spread Some Joy Today–by sharing yours. It’s the only way.

A Good Partner Is Someone Who…

“A good wife is one who serves her husband
in the morning like a mother does,
loves him in the day like a sister does,
and pleases him like a prostitute in the night.”
 
— Chanakya
 
 
[Classic post from 12-17-11]
 
I remember when I was in my late teens, at work my boss said something very similar to this quote by Chanakya. It is a popular idea, and I probably subscribed to it for at least part of my life, but not for some time.
 
I would say it differently today:
 
I want a partner who is of similar mind, yet not so similar that we complete each other’s sentences, and have interests and challenges that help cause curiosity and excitement. Someone who is alive, full of life, and appreciative of life and living. Someone who is fun to be with, who makes me laugh, and is full of love. Someone who encourages and wants the best for me and her at the same time. Someone who is willing to risk in order to expand and be more than yesterday. Someone who enjoys touch and is sensual. Someone who enjoys friends and is generous in nature. Someone I look up to and look forward to. Someone without jealousy, and never ever uses the word ‘should.’ A valued partner, an enriching friend, a lover of life, and a liver in love.
 
That’s all… of course, in order for that to work, I must be those things as well. I cannot expect others, no matter their title, to do that which I am not willing or interested in doing or being.
 
 
Happiness Is Being Happy! That Was Easy!
 
Spread Some Joy Today–Think about this: What are the rules for you to have joy? What needs to happen? How do things need to be? The more rules you have, the less joy you can have.

Becoming The Rightful Master

“Man is buffeted by circumstances
so long as he believes himself
to be the creature of outside conditions,

but when he realizes that he is a creative power,
and that he may command the hidden soil
and seeds of his being out of which circumstances grow;

he then becomes the rightful master of himself.”

— James Allen,
As A Man Thinketh

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