Why The World Needs You To Be A Three-Year-Old Again

My three-year-old drew this picture for me today at school. She enthusiastically tells me it’s a picture of a “grab hopper”. I have no idea what a grab hopper is.

But it really doesn’t matter.

I love her art. Because it’s art in the truest sense. It’s her innocent untainted expression of what was inside of her, her vision, beautifully showcased on a canvas of 20 pound multipurpose paper with a cheap brown felt-tipped marker.

I’m certain that during the creative process she was never once concerned about what anyone else at her table thought about her drawing. They, too, were far too busy expressing themselves as well, gleefully showing each other their unique masterpieces.

Art. Without the art critics. Just art.

How much of the art that lies within us is never shared with the world simply because we fear it will be harshly measured, judged, evaluated, compared, criticized? How much of what we really are – our voice, our vision, our passion – remains suppressed simply because we’ve empowered the critics and cynics around us? You know, the ones that will lovingly tell you all the reasons why things probably won’t work out anyway?

The best way to silence the critics is to dive in anyway. Then just keep on swimming. At your own pace.

Within each one of us lie unique gifts that only we can offer to the world. A gift that makes the world better. Wouldn’t today be a great day to again start sharing them?

C’mon. How often do you get to act like a three-year-old?

It’s a great day to be you!

How I Lost 50 Pounds on the “Beer, Pizza & Donut Diet”

“Absolutely amazing results!”

“And it will work for you, too!”

I’ve discovered an eating program that allows you to eat absolutely anything you want to eat and still lose weight. In fact, not only can you eat anything you want to eat, you can eat as much as you want to eat and still shed pounds.

How liberating…walking through the never-ending aisles of my local grocery mega-mart free to throw anything I want into the basket. Or sitting in my favorite restaurant free to choose anything I want off the menu.

Continue reading “How I Lost 50 Pounds on the “Beer, Pizza & Donut Diet””

Life Lessons from the Number 643

“…A united self moving forward towards fulfilling our own unique divine promise…”

There were many things I learned in school that at the time made no practical sense to me. You know, the “am I ever going to use this in real life?” question. Several decades later I can confirm that for the most part time has not made what I considered then to be impractical anymore practical.

As a dad with school-aged kids I actively get involved in their studies. I like to be aware of what they’re working on. I like to be there to help out if they get a little stuck. Dad 101…here for the kids. A more secretive motivation is to see if ol’ dad still remembers the stuff, especially when it comes to math. My math skills back in the day weren’t that good to begin with, and the newer methods of Continue reading “Life Lessons from the Number 643”

The Importance of Being Selfish

Trust me, you want me to be selfish.

And I want you to be selfish, too.

Being selfish doesn’t seem like a good idea. Especially if building community and relationships is important to you. After all, being selfish is about being self-centered. It’s about the “me” and not the “we”. The focus on individual accomplishment and development can’t possibly be beneficial to the collective good of our society.

I disagree.

Continue reading “The Importance of Being Selfish”

Life Lessons from Peanut Butter and Jelly

Culinary soul mates?

One of my many duties as a father of three school aged kids is that of the official sandwich maker. Most every morning I can be found standing over slices of bread, mindlessly configuring slices of ham, turkey, or olive loaf with American cheese and yellow mustard. Or if Dad didn’t get to the supermarket to pick up some deli meat, there’s always Plan B, also known as Peanut Butter and Jelly.

I guess I could have kept track of exactly how many sandwiches I’ve made in my role as official sandwich maker, but the morning usually never affords me the time to sit down and update a spreadsheet. But I wish I had a dollar for every sandwich I’ve made over the years.

PROFOUND A recent Plan B morning, it was time to make some PB & J’s. As I was about to unite the individual slices of wheat bread, one coated with a layer of peanut butter and the other coated with a layer of jelly, I stopped for a moment as I surprisingly realized something rather profound:

Peanut Butter doesn’t need Jelly. Continue reading “Life Lessons from Peanut Butter and Jelly”

The Joy of Just Not Knowing

“Life isn’t the way it’s supposed to be. It’s the way it is. The way you deal with it makes all the difference.”  – Virginia Satir

Uncertainty. The problem with uncertainty is that it’s, well, so uncertain. We all strive to avoid uncertainty. In a sea of constant change, we all want to know where the life boats are.

It wasn’t too long ago that life was something you could sort of plan. There was an expectation of stability and predictability as you transitioned from one phase of your life into another. The steps were well worn and well defined; graduation led to the job which led to the marriage which led to the house which led to the children which eventually led to the retirement and the pension from the job which you never left. As predictable and as certain a path as a train on a track.

I was raise in this environment. My Dad worked in the same factory his Dad worked in. The two of them gave their entire working lives to one company, 77 years between the both of them. Why? Because they could. The process, the path, just worked.

HOLES IN THE DREAMBOAT I guess the world has changed a little bit. Certainty, the cornerstone of how life used to be, is long gone. The now-vacant lot where Continue reading “The Joy of Just Not Knowing”

Love, Rain and the Cactus Heart

It’s not every day that a cactus teaches you about love…

So, I finally made it to California. It was a promise I made to the world via my high school yearbook, that California was in my future. That’s what it said under the picture of the long-haired, seventeen year old soon-to-be high school graduate.

It just took me 29 years to get there.

I don’t remember exactly why I wanted to go to California. I think it was because I had a crush on a girl who had plans to go to Continue reading “Love, Rain and the Cactus Heart”

So, What Will You Bring Into The Next Moment?

The Next Moment can redefine us.

Or go obliviously unnoticed. 

It’s all up to us.

So here we stand on the edge of a new moment. Moments, if defined as seconds, happen 86,400 times per day. We move from one moment to the next almost seamlessly, as one moment morphs into the next, and then the next. The busy pace of life today causes us to misplace entire days, let alone notice a single individual moment.

Transitioning between the moments is done without much thought or reflection. As we blindly enter the Next Moment, we bring with us the contents of the previous moment, which contained the contents of the moment prior to that one. Each moment is a clean Continue reading “So, What Will You Bring Into The Next Moment?”

The Ultimate Pain Killer

I recently had a conversation with a friend I didn’t know was a friend. I had know this person for the past few years on a very casual basis. Neither one of us really knew anything about each other. All I knew was that this person was the kind of person you’d probably like to get to know better.

Never did I expect one simple question to dramatically impact me so profoundly.

It wasn’t so much the question itself, it was the interaction that stemmed from the question. We began with a very innocent and Continue reading “The Ultimate Pain Killer”

2,134 Ways To Be Happy: Confessions From The Functionally Unhappy

WARNING:

This post contains a BIG BOLD STATEMENT.

It seems like a lot of people are looking for happiness. Walk through any bookstore and count the number of times you see the words “happy” or “happiness”. If you had $5 for each time you saw those words you could probably make a mortgage payment. Just for fun, Google the word “happiness”. The last time I did, Google came back with over 75,400,000 entries. I found sites about happiness quotes, happiness poems, happiness articles, happiness blogs, happiness affirmations, happiness posters, happiness videos, even happiness retreats. I found happiness everything.

I can’t help but wonder…with such an overly abundant supply of happiness support materials, are we in the middle of some sort of Continue reading “2,134 Ways To Be Happy: Confessions From The Functionally Unhappy”