Saturday, January 28, 2017

Visit my new website at Intentional Actions

Please visit my new website and blog at Intentional Actions.

I will keep this blog active for awhile, but all updates and fresh content can be found on my new site.

Monday, July 6, 2015

                                                              What If?
                     You went on an adventure instead of reading adventure articles?

A personal adventure can be many things. It can be exhilarating, spontaneous, spiritual, exploratory, whimsical, energizing, seductive, filled with laughter and enlightenment.  You say, “Wow I want that!” I say, “Great! Get on with it.”

Oh, not today, you say?  You have to finish heating those Hot Pockets sitting in the refrigerator; and then there is, backed-up work projects, changing the oil in the car, a trip to the mall, paying bills and finally, when the day is done, staring at the television for hours. Yes, life can be a  powerful thrill a minute!

How many times have you thought about tackling something out of the ordinary, even extraordinary? A trip you have always dreamed about, an activity that seemed exciting but perhaps too risky - rafting down a death-defying river, taking a class with a world renowned professor, or a cooking class with one of those fancy talking chefs, joining a choral group, going on a date with someone you have been spying from afar, a vacation to some distant island or mountain retreat?

How often do you have thoughts about doing something exciting or interesting and quickly let the thought slip away? Do you promise to do it later? Do You keep your promise?

An adventure can be something as simple or complex as you prefer. It doesn’t need to require great amounts of cash or time. All you will need is desire and a willingness to jump out of your mundane routine into new experiences that can get the ol’ heart rate thundering, engender excitement, wonder and laughter.

Many will read this and think, “Yep; great idea” and quickly return to their same ol’ same ol’. Some readers might truly want to add an adventure here and there, but will feel stuck and thus will make no effort to stretch themselves towards something new and exciting. It is those who say, “Damn right! I want more fulfillment in my life and I intend to take action, that will create opportunities for more adventure, passion and enthusiasm in their lives

It’s not easy to climb into that Conestoga wagon and set across unknown lands, with a band of strangers, over mountains and across raging rivers. Such effort takes enthusiasm, planning, commitment and trust in one’s ability to thrive.
If you want to pursue your own adventurous quest, you’ll need to:
·      Get off the couch and take action.
·       Set a time frame.
·      It’s your journey so explore the things that pump you up.
·      Write out the steps necessary to make it happen.
·      Clarify the benefits of trying something new.
·      Identify resources you will need
·      Share your ideas with others as many of us are energized by the enthusiasm of others.
·      Be sure to acknowledge any thoughts or fears that could inhibit a successful outcome and have a plan to assure that they don’t.

 Adventure is not always predictable or comfortable, but it sure does make life worth living.

Have One?

Friday, January 24, 2014

Scratch Those Resolutions


Yes, I dared to say it!  I say pish posh to the whole idea of resolutions, Scratch ‘em! Why bother setting yourself up for another year of lame excuses over your failed proclamations? I am not opposed to meaningful change, but I shall never be a loyal fan of whimsical resolutions.   

Throngs of us swear to make some sort of change in our life at the onset of each New Year. You know, get healthier, get smarter, exercise, lose weight, volunteer time, read a book, be nice to someone or everyone. Shortly before or after the resolution making has begun, experts or average Joes like me will write a small piece on how to stick to those resolutions. Most of the information offered will have value, if followed. And there’s the rub. How many of us adhere to sage advice or maintain consistent effort towards most resolutions?

If you are sincere about making a change that matters in your life this year, make a plan; make it count; and most of all, set your sights on something that you embrace and truly believe enhances the value of your life.

It’s too easy to get caught up in the “have to”s and “should”s and lose awareness of what we value most in today’s rocket paced world.
I would suggest quieting the noise in your life while you reflect upon all that you know to be truly important to you. Yes, that means turning off your constant companions, the ever-present Smart Phone, and its posse, the IPod, tablet and laptop. 

You are way ahead of the game if you focus on you and what makes your life better - what you crave.  It is much easier to make and keep a commitment when you have clarity of purpose and fervent desire.

If you are intent on making a meaningful change in you life, I say great. You will need to name your goal and create and stick to a plan.  Take the time to explore all that generates passion and energy for you.  You are more likely to make it to the finish line if you do.

A commitment to change can be made any time of the year.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Feeling Good Is Free

                                        Feeling Good Is Free

There is no charge for feeling good, so why not take advantage of this blue plate special as often as possible?

If attitude is truly the key to happiness as some experts suggest then I say get that attitude cranked up as high as it will go. Attitude often determines our state of being. Thus a positive attitude should, in turn, render us feeling more upbeat.

How often do we take time to place ourselves amidst the people and activities that raise our feeling state? Scratch that; how often do we even take a moment to think about the things that make us feel good?

I’ll give you a hint about feeling good. It seldom occurs when we are caught in a web of negative thinking.  Most of us get trapped in it at various times. You know, thoughts of blame, regret, guilt, self doubt. Some of us do it way too often and can’t find the way out from under it.

Good luck trying to create a positive attitude when these negative thoughts take over!

What can you do when you find yourself trapped in negative thinking?
·      The first key is awareness, always awareness. You have to know when you are mired in negative muck.
·      It is helpful to have a plan once this awareness arrives. It is important to find your way into objective thinking and positive action. We are seldom objective when we are trapped in negativity.
·      Know what works for you. It might be a chat with a supportive family member or loved one. Time spent dining and laughing with friends, a walk with your pooch or immersion in a favorite hobby or book, sitting by a creek listening to the flow of the water and feeling the warmth of the sun beaming down upon you, a ride on a roller coaster, a weekend excursion to a favorite haunt whistling a happy tune (not Mozart’s Requiem) always lifts my spirits.  
·      Perhaps getting physically active. Do something that is fun and energizing; unless, that involves a shopping spree resulting in the purchase of a Ferrari and you are still struggling to pay off your Ford Fiesta.  

How we feel is often a choice and will be determined by our mindset and our actions.

The cost for feeling good is a bargain compared to the price we pay when we sit with an unhappy or angry attitude for too long. 

Commit to smiling everyday. If nothing else you will help the folks around you to feel better.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

So What If It Is ADD?

                                                   So What If It Is ADD?

Well, I say great! Now you know what to blame for all of those times: you were late, lost an assignment, spent days pondering and pondering the simplest task, stopped a project in midstream, lost track of something you were working on, blurted out an embarrassing comment, got distracted or just plain forgot, created a problem by jumping into something without thinking. You get the idea.

Fortunately there are gifts to balance the yin with the yan. You know; the creative energy, the often highly intuitive nature, the sensitive perception to those around you, the quest for something new and exciting, the humor and intelligence, unique perceptions and the gift of gab. There are numerous examples of very successful people who report having ADD and nevertheless thrive in the entertainment/arts, business, science and political arenas. There are a plethora of famous names that are attributed with ADD. Some of the people who are reported to have or have had ADD are: Bill Gates, Winston Churchill, Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Benjamin Franklin, Pablo Picasso, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Werner Von Braun, Ernest Hemingway, Henry Ford, John F. Kennedy, Robin Williams, John D. Rockefeller, Justin Timberlake, Whoopi Goldberg, Walt Disney, Will Smith, Steven Spielberg, Bill Cosby, Frank Lloyd Wright, Joan Rivers, Virginia Wolf, Jim Carrey, General George Patton.

Whew, quite an impressive list. While the traits of ADD undoubtedly presented difficulties for these folks and probably impeded their progress at various times, the presence of these traits certainly did not limit their ability to achieve success and to live rewarding lives. Having ADD is not an automatic prescription for failure, but it does require a mindful focus on the choices that are made and a concerted effort to develop more productive behavior patterns.

There are always choices to be made.  For example, you can choose to focus on the deficits that impede your progress and may even create chaos in your life. You can also choose to maintain behaviors that continue to sabotage your momentum, thus allowing these dark forces to control your thoughts and actions.  Or, you can choose to embrace the gifts you possess and create the changes that lead to opportunities to succeed and thrive.

I do not suggest that simply being mindful will correct all disruptive patterns of thought and behavior. It is however, a critical piece of the change puzzle. Making choices can be difficult and complicated, but when you are mindful, you increase your awareness of the factors that impact your life and your outcomes.
                                   Choose Wisely and Embrace Your Gifts

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

One Small Step For You - One Giant Leap Towards Your Goal


What if, you decided to take one small step towards a desired goal rather than just thinking about it or waiting for divine intervention today? Would you be thinking differently about yourself?  Would you like to think differently about yourself?
I think they call that grabbing the bull by the horns, although that seems quite dangerous with high potential for a painful experience.

I would suggest a path that is painless and with a much higher reward ceiling.
You know what they say; inertia begets inertia. Actually I have never heard anyone use that phrase but the words ring true. If you sit still long enough there will only be more sitting to follow.

One small step, what might that be you ask?  It could be something as simple as:
·      Putting down your I Pad, Smart Phone etc. and telling someone what your goal is and why it is important to you.
·       Sitting down and charting the steps you would need to take.
·      Making that first phone call to get the ball rolling.
·       Identifying the thoughts that have held you back and asking someone to give you a hand getting started.
·      Researching the information you need to put your plan into action.
·      Asking your professor for help when you’re feeling stuck or overwhelmed by your assignment.
·      Identifying the resources that can bring your goal to fruition.
·       Getting off the couch, turning the television off and asking for help is always a great beginning.

I am always suspicious when someone tells me they intend to quit smoking next Monday and it is Tuesday. While I believe they are well intended, I know they are negotiating internally and chances are very high that come Monday they will still be puffing away.

It is always easier to put off challenges for another day, but we all know that this is seldom helpful or rewarding, and all too often tomorrow never arrives on time.  

Activity breeds more activity and in turn confidence. You can’t complete something until you begin something. 

Don’t set a start date; start today!