So, it is the start of a new year, a time when many reflect, many make resolutions, many want to start ‘A New’. There are also many who live for the day and want to live with no regrets. I love the idea, however, I am also cautious of it.
Sure I want to do make the most out of every opportunity and experience as much as I can. However, I also want to make sure that I am doing all I can do and making sure that I am not doing it at the expense of others. It is a balancing game, and we play the game at home, work and in all other parts of our lives. We live in this great big world and we survive in our little communities. In my community, my living with no regrets is to live without injuring others.
Sometime this means we have to give up an experience we want so we can take care of others. It is simple just do the right thing. You will get your rewards in the end.
Going in to the new year lets all try to live with no regrets – and acknowledge the strength it provides to you and your little community.
Always look forward
Always be ready for the big storm
Help others prepare
Be ready when it happens
Be thankful when it does not happen
Be even more thankful and appreciative that you saw it potentially coming and were prepared had it hit.
Repeat the routine
giving credit where credit is due https://orangeribbonsforjaime.org/
What does this title mean to you and how will you make a difference in 2020. The difference can be made at home with your family, in the community you live in, at your job or of course in the community we all live in. I have always felt that passion and accountability were cornerstones of a successful life in all my communities until I heard the words above in a Ted Talk given by my friend Fred Guttenberg. Fred should never have had to given this talk, and I never should have had to hear the words above. But he did and I did. Fred’s daughter Jamie should never have been a victim in Parkland, Florida, she was.
I know Fred dreams that this never happened. It did. Now Fred Dreams differently. He is Dedicated to this not happening again to anyone. This is his POWERFUL COMBINATION, and we should thank him for it.
What is your POWERFUL COMBINATION? How are you expressing it. We all need to have one (even more than one). Where are you going to make a difference? Big, small, global or local it is up to each of us to do something. I struggle when I hear people say “well, there is nothing that can be done…” This is an attitude we can all do better at changing.
We all have the strength to change and to dream, the question is are you willing to have the dedication to do the work?
#orangeribbonsforjamie https://orangeribbonsforjaime.org/ https://orangeribbonsforjaime.org/donate/
Trust me, I do not intend to put a negative spin on the day, however if we are only expressing thanks on Thanksgiving, are we really getting the meaning of it? To me it is a day to reflect, to be with family regardless of what you do. We do not have many days to be together when other outside lures are a bit slower. And yes, when we are together we often make the obligatory declaration of the things we are thankful for.
So here is the rub, do you take your declaration with you…. or leave it at the table? Are you equally thankful for these things on a random day? Are you thankful for the good things you have in life on say March 11th? Do you share that gratitude with others?
Try this – get out your calendar and randomly pick 5 dates in 2020 that are NOT in November. Write on those dates “BE THANKFUL TODAY AND SHOW GRATITUDE”. Step 2 in this on those days DO IT!
The real goal is how do we move from acknowledging the good things we have from 1 day a year to 5 days to 365 days? Wouldn’t it be nice?
(As a side note, there is an overwhelming show of volunteerism at shelters and the local food pantry on Thanksgiving and Christmas, however needy communities need your help in August too!)
How often have you said “I HOPE THIS WORKS” or “I HOPE I GET THAT ORDER (or) JOB (or) POSITION (or) GRADE”etc …..
How often have you HOPED for it but not fully participated in the outcome?
Probably often and maybe too often. Although it is true that we are not in control of many things including our destiny, we need to make sure we participate in the process. We need to work towards the things we hope to achieve, we need to plant seeds – we need to be farmers and hunters.
Too often we HOPE without working towards that goal. Put in the effort you will be surprised with the results. Actually you should not be surprised with the results if you put in the work. You will get back what you put in.
If you work to build relationships you will get that ORDER (or) JOB (or) POSITION (or) GRADE” etc…. maybe not at that moment but they will come.
To steal from a spiritual saying , ” Hope without works is dead “
Everything has a backstory, our actions and reactions are molded by them. I have written about you get what you give on my blog. Sometimes you give what you got, and it is not always good…
Backstories. Some are deeply rooted into our personalities and others are as simple as what our experience was getting our morning coffee. The experience, good or bad, shapes us sometimes for the long haul and often just for the day.
“Wow – someone randomly bought me my morning coffee – it looks like it will be a good day! Ughhh some one just cut me off in traffic and I spilled my FREE morning coffee….”
Who knows if this will be a good start to the day or a bad one. If a bad one, unfortunately it is often taken out on a very unsuspecting third party.
So what’s the backstory? How do we prepare for it not to rule us? That is for you to figure out, (but here is how I minimize it). If you are willing to be vulnerable and honestly share that you are human and have a backstory molding you today, you may just get by without it ruling you.
“Sorry I am late and cranky I spilled my coffee all over myself in traffic”. See now you can start the day without a bad backstory – here is the fun part. “Bummer I spilled my coffee, some random stranger bought it for me, for no reason at all!!” Now you have a good story to start your day. Undo the bad!
We also need to recognize that the people we interact with have a backstory too. I find that I need to always be ready to investigate it best I can, understand it and relate to it.
I recently saw the play ADMISSIONS granted the topic was timely as I have one in college and the other preparing her search. It was about the admissions at a small prestigious boarding school and the college search for some of their students. Plenty of room for conflict! The interaction behind all of the characters would never have worked if you did not learn through the play their backstories.
If we all take a few steps to learn each other’s stories I do believe relationships will be smoother and stronger.
So I read this last week…. “Today, I will let the rest of life intrude upon my mind. I will let myself be nourished by what comes along.— “
How do I interpret this – Keep your eyes and ears wide open – use what you see and hear to be a better you. It is your job to know what makes you a better person in all areas of your life (work included!)
So – how do I bring this into my professional life? The same way I bring it in to my personal life – watch, listen, learn and grow.
People work with people – be human!
I want to start by saying this is not a pessimistic cup half empty post. It is a topic that has helped to keep me positive and grounded through many stressful situations
People say – “If it can go wrong it will” I am not so sure that is true. It might go wrong, it also might not. More likely it might not. The IT can be and is almost anything.
Let’s pretend it does, will you panic? Likely not if you take a few simple steps:
If it goes wrong what will I do? What are the steps and actions to get it back on track?
How will I communicate this to the people affected?
What is the worst case scenario if it does?
Once you have a plan you are ready to handle what most likely will not happen anyway.
With no plan there is panic, there is relationship breakdown (sometimes ones that can not be fixed). Who wants that?
So what initially sounds cup half empty is really a process to prepare your self to keep your cup more than half full.
Do we say it often enough and when we do is it said with intention? Or is it said with other motives in mind?
I am someone who wants to learn from my mistakes and wants to allow others too as well. The power of saying you are sorry with intention and no motive other than to be sorry is well, POWERFUL. Too often we say “I’m Sorry” with hollow intentions because we think it is the right thing to say. Are we sorry? Do we mean it? Did we make a mistake? Are we saying we are sorry but our ego is telling us that we said it because we are supposed to say it?
I hope it is not ego driven and I hope it is with intention. In fact it does not matter the relationships of the people or groups we say it to. Regardless of a personal relationship, a work relationship or a stranger, we are all allowed to make mistakes and we are all allowed to be sorry.
I have found that being sorry, with intention and growing from it has allowed me to create better relationships in all my groups. My motive is to recognize what I did and hopefully not repeat it.
It is that simple –
respect people and you will get respect
be charitable and you will get charity
love and you will be loved
be willing to forgive, and you will get forgiveness
The mistake we make is that too often the motive is How do I get respect? How can I be loved? How will others be kind? We then campaign for that emotion from others – some even go as far a to buy respect and kindness.
Make it natural, not forced – Make it a part of your life. Practice kindness. Practice it so often that it is just natural.
We are not perfect and we live in an imperfect world – but it is simple – we learned it before kindergarten – treat people the way you want to be treated.
You Get What You Give