Monday, December 17, 2012

What are you going to stop doing?

Hello Friends, I know, I know … long time no blog post and believe me it has been with good reason. I will get into that one on my next blog entry but for now there are a few things that I felt worthy of sharing as this year comes to a close.
I believe that I have mentioned this in a previous blog and I’ll mention it again … I have the luxury (and I do mean luxury) of an excellent Peer Mentor, a quality individual who holds me accountable for the things that I say I’m going to accomplish, someone who adds insight and an objective perspective to the sometimes puzzling vicissitudes of life.  His name is Promod Sharma, and he is what is referred to in the UK as a ‘choice’ individual. He is trustworthy, highly intelligent, sane … for the most part, a highly respected professional, a person of great integrity, candid and doesn’t sugar coat things, trustworthy, and most of all fully invests chunks of his valuable time into helping me to flourish and grow as an individual.  I can only hope that I mirror right back all of those very same things to him.
The other day Promod asked me a very simple and yet profound question as to what I was going to stop doing.  It gave me great opportunity for pause and reflection and here are a few things that I have decided I will stop doing going forward and I challenge you to come up with your own list (and if you feel so inclined share it with me). 
Going forward here are the things that I commit to stop doing:
·         Wasting time with negative people out of some false sense of loyalty or because of not wanting to hurt their feelings (even though most times they are hurting mine)
·         Overextending myself out of some false sense of duty or mindlessly volunteering my time away instead of being completely mindful of where and with whom I would like to invest my time.
·         Being busy over being productive, constructive, or taking adequate rest to do absolutely nothing and just be …yes you heard me right … just BE
·         Staying up way too late and establishing a regular time for quality sleep …7 to 8 hours
·         Caring what others think ... I have absolutely no control over what people think and besides most people are fickle ... one minute they love you and next minute they hate you. Chasing people's opinion’s is like chasing the wind ... you just don't know which way they are going to blow so why be a partaker in futility? It’s absolutely senseless.
·         Associating or breaking bread with anyone that I do not like, respect, or trust or hanging around frivolous, shallow, or overly materialist people.  Net Worth vs. Life Worth – which one is more valuable?
·         Comparing myself to others who are seemingly more "successful" and continue to be more focused on my own definition of success. Comparison always breeds discontent. So if I ever veer over to this disempowering position I will be more mindful to stop it immediately.
·         Making excuses for not exercising at least 4 times per week and finding alternative ways to imbed exercise into my life as a staple even its salsa dancing or some intramural sport like volleyball or badminton.
·         Overeating out of boredom, stressful emotions, or mindlessness ... this one speaks for itself.  Only great health will enable one to accomplish great things.
·         Letting my mind wander to negative and disempowering thoughts. We can control our thoughts at any given moment of the day so I will intentionally choose to harness and focus my thoughts on more positive empowering things … noble goals!
·         Second guessing my gut and be single-minded vs. double-minded
I’m putting this list out there not only so that my peer mentor will hold me accountable but also to remind myself that if I miss the mark and start backsliding that I will more cognizant of how I’m living my life. There are many positive things that are born out of mindfulness and taking a long, hard, and honest look at one’s life has multi-dimensional benefits like wisdom, insight, epiphanies, and opportunities for personal growth.  My greatest hope as we all saunter into 2013 is that we can live our lives by choice and design and not by default.
So what are you going to stop doing?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Promises, Promises

Last year I took people at their word when they made promises to me and admittedly felt a bit naïve when they failed to deliver. However, this year I made a promise to myself that I would not rest too comfortably on the promises of people. What I sadly discovered was that while many these people were well intentioned they never associated their promise as a bond.

Not one to be daunted for very long by disappointment I sought to look for the valuable lessons found in the disappointment of broken promises and here are a few little nuggets of wisdom that I'd like to share with you:

1. Whenever someone makes a promise it's a good and hopeful idea to give them the benefit of the doubt.

2. If someone breaks a promise then try to see if there were extenuating circumstances that prevented them from delivering. If there were unpreventable circumstances forgive, clear the slate of resentment, and move on.

3. Try to recall if breaking promises is a consistent pattern with this individual and if it is exercise vigilance when dealing with this person in the future.

4. If this person continues to break promises you may want to choose confront them on their inconsistent behavior, keep them at arm’s length, or rid them from your life altogether.

5. Persist in the face of disappointment and trust that there are people out there that are willing to help you. There are a lot of positive and helpful people out there so do not allow a series of disappointments to make you jaded or cynical about acquiring people’s help when you need it.

6. Take responsibility for your own wishes being carried out and do-it-yourself.

7. Remember that your strong sense of health, well-being, and balance is very much controlled by the choices that you make, what you think, how you react, and by what you can control.

What I’ve learned that it’s a great idea to occasionally assess and prune some of your friendships and to ensure that you are keeping quality and healthy relationships in your life. A person who consistently breaks promises is someone that cannot be trusted and that’s not healthy. I love to say to people who consistently break promises “I cannot hear a word that you are saying because your actions are speaking so loudly”.

So, do you consistently keep your promises?

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Cherish The Love

Well, I cannot believe that we are at the end of January already. Where does the time go? Friends have asked where I've been since my last post and not to pull a downer right away I lost three close friends in the month of December and when I thought it could now worse it did and my Uncle & Godfather died a day after Boxing Day. So I've been grieving for these considerable losses. I've been thinking just how to extract some good out of the sadness and over the course of the next four posts I'll do just that by sharing the intrinsic wisdom that each of these remarkable individuals brought into my life.

My friend Edith taught the value of being able to still smile in the face of adversity. She always presented and optimistic and hopeful demeanor and always had a twinkle of mischievousness in her eye. Her example of faithful service to others was not lost on me and she also taught me the value of simplicity and expressing honest and heartfelt for those you love. Though I miss her terribly her legacy of love and example has made me grateful and inspired to emulate her positive attributes.

On another note I've have been "visioneering" and doing some hard core goal setting for this year. I recently read a wonderful and helpful book by Brian Tracy entitled "Goals" and it has been an excellent resource and guide during my planning process. One of my favourite quotes on planning is from the Bible that simply says "Where there is no vision the people perish".

I envision that 2012 will be a great year with many lessons to learn, many remarkable people yet to meet, and opportunities to leave and indelible and meaningful footprint of love and contribution.

Cheers to you and hope dear friends that you will cherish those you love.

Monday, October 31, 2011

When "Good Enough" isn't Good Enough

Recently I was visiting a very sick friend (who has since passed away)at a local hospital when I noticed the most attractive elderly woman at the bus stop on my way home. She looked very distinguished,her hair was well coiffed, her makeup applied flawlessly, and she was dressed impeccably. I felt utterly compelled to pay her a compliment and did so by telling her how abosolutely gorgeous she looked. She accepted my compliment graciously and said that she had noticed my attire and thought I looked great. I thanked her. She then explained that her late husband well taken care of by the doctors and nurses of the hospital during his illness and that she volunteered there three times a week as a way of giving back. She proceeded to tell me why she felt compelled to look her best. She said "I have a friend and everytime we get together she just throws something on, her hair half done, and no make up, not even a little lipstick, and quite honestly she looks like a slob. When I ask her why she does not make the effort to pull herself together she tells me "this is good enough"." She continues to tell me that "Good enough" is not good enough and will never befor her. She explained that at least 50 people see her on her way to the hospital and another 50 people see her on her way home. She said "That's approximately 100 people thre times a week that I'm making a first impression upon and I don't want their impression to be of a slob". "I see looking my best as the gift of beauty to everyone I encounter. I look my best for me and so that I can give that gift of beauty to others ". what a novel concept as I never thought about it that way before but this woman was providing me with a new angle on putting my best foot forward. Now everytime I get ready to go somewhere her words are a gentle reminder of the secret gift that we have to give .. presenting our best selves to the world. So is "Good enough" good enough for you?

Friday, September 30, 2011

Strength, Courage and Wisdom

I feel the strongest when I'm faith-filled empowered with an unwavering belief and trust in the power of God's goodness. I also feel my strongest when I'm single-minded,tenacious, and exercise laser focus on my goals. Clarity can provide a sense of Strength too.

Stay tuned for more!

Live to Give

There is an intrinsic power in giving. Giving involves mindfulness and pure motive.

Stay tuned for more!

The Most Important Question ... ever!

Want to know what the most important question you'll ever be asked in your lifetime? Stay tuned!