Thankfulness and gratitude. Sunshine and rain. Can we use everything in our life for our growth? Do we listen to that still, small voice?

Do we listen to that still, small voice. Can we use everything in our life for growth? Thankfulness and gratitude. Sunshine and rain.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

I’ve had all kinds of experiences with God in terms of revelation through a still, small voice or dreams or coincidences. M. Scott Peck

Today it is raining. We need it, my garden is dry. I’m remembering three days of rain at home in Saskatchewan when I was a kid. My little dog doesn’t like to have to go pee in the rain. I have to watch her to make sure she does pee and doesn’t just come back to the door for me to let her in. She tries to fool me a few times and ends up staying in the rain longer than she had to. Finally, she complies, and I let her back in the house.

We all have things in life we need to do even if we don’t like doing them. Some things we know we should do but something always derails our intentions. Somehow even though we said we wouldn’t eat ice-cream last night we ended up with a bowl of it, and because there wouldn’t be much left we finished it. Willpower is not the way to build the life we want.

If we want to make changes in our lives we need to build the changes into habits. It could become a really bad habit if I sat down each night to edit my novel with a bowl of ice-cream. I need to not buy butter pecan ice-cream even when it’s on sale. Especially, when it’s on sale that’s when we really load up on goodies. We went to Costco the other night and came home with a giant bag of chocolates, a giant bag of M&M’s, and a giant bag of Doritos, but the nuts were too expensive. We didn’t have a Costco membership for years because the two of us in Costco went crazy. Then we had a Costco ice-cream on our way out.

I’ll see how my willpower holds out. I haven’t touched the M&M’s or chocolates, yet. Some people believe if we keep snacks in the house all the time we won’t overindulge. It works better for me when we buy them when we want them, and don’t have the siren call in the house.

I also bought a tray of fruit I hadn’t seen before which turned out to be plums, and not the tastiest plums either. Next time I see them I will know what they are, and that is why I bought them.

The whole point of being alive is to evolve into the complete person you were intended to be. I believe you can only do this when you stop long enough to hear the whisper you might have drowned out, that small voice compelling you toward the kind of work you’d be willing to do even if you weren’t paid. Once you tune out the noise of your life and hear that call, you face the biggest challenge of all: to find the courage to seek out your big dream, regardless of what anyone else thinks. Oprah Winfrey

If we keep our good habits and make it harder to fall into bad habits we can meet our goals. Indulging in foods that don’t agree with me too often leads to not feeling well. Feeling great regularly is such a blessing. Indulging in ice-cream every night is not actually as good as going out occasionally for a really great ice-cream.

The couple ahead of us at Costco had a bill of $365.00 and it didn’t look like they had that much in their cart. Is Costco a budget buster or a budget saver for most people? The gas looked cheap but the line was too long to even think of joining.

My husband and I will have to set a limit at Costco, decided on ahead of time. It can be dangerous just piling in one thing after another. Who knew a Costco membership would be a new area of growth for us.

Life is about learning and growing, and there are lessons and growth around every corner.

A strange thing just happened. My daughter is taking an exam today. Last night I dreamed I was upset at her because she was still here and I was worried she would be late for her exam. She just told me she checked her exam information and the exam is at 1:00 instead of 9:00. In my dream, the exam was at 10:00 instead of 9:00.

We are told to listen to the still small voice within. What is that still small voice trying to tell us that we don’t listen to or acknowledge?

You may be living under the illusion that when God ignites great things in your life, He’ll announce it with a big bang. He might. It’s more likely that He won’t. So stop waiting around for the big bang. Pay attention to the subtle clues and the still, small voice. God lives in that place too. Steven Furtick

See all 2 images

The Process of Realization: A detailed description of the process of every kind of realization, the law of attraction, from quantum fields and mind, to the matter Paperback – Feb 20 2017

by Ivan Antic (Author) 3.9 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

 See all 2 formats and editions

Is a successful marriage falling in love, again and again, with the same person?

Falling in love, again and again with the same person is what makes a successful marriage.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person. Mignon McLaughlin

I wrote this July 29, 2018, as my daughter was preparing to get married.

The secret of a happy marriage is not feeling blissfully in love every day. “And they lived happily ever after” is not a real thing. You go through the ups and downs of life. We run through the five stages of marriage over and over again.

Stage one – we all love this one. Falling in love, we’ve found our prince. Our beloved can do no wrong. They have quirks we love.

Stage two – those quirks become annoyances. We discover even more faults and foibles about them, and they annoy us even more.

Stage three – we decide what to do now that we realize we married a person, not a prince.

Stage four – this is the hard slogging of getting through our no longer romanticized life. We’ve taken off our rose-colored glasses; our Prince is now a frog.

Stage five – the reward for getting through all that hard stuff is somehow at some time we get a glimpse again of why we thought he was a prince. We fall in love all over again at a new level of intensity and commitment.

We are each one of us in one of these stages now. The secret to a long marriage is going through the stages over and over again.

Wouldn’t it be boring if it really was happily ever after? What if a day at the beach lasted for thirty years? No new adventures, no new discoveries, nothing learned, no personal growth. It is hard getting through tough times, it is nice looking back knowing we got through them together.

We can live with them and love it, we can live with them and hate it, or we can leave. What we all want to do, but can’t do is change them. It might be a good thing we can’t change people, we would change them to suit our whim instead of changing ourselves to become better people. There would be no growth for either of us.

Love is patient, love is kind, love is never giving up. Love is easy, love is hard, love makes the hard things better and the good things sweet.

If you are lucky enough in this life to find someone to love, love them, cherish them and be willing to go through the stages of life with them over and over again. How many people look back on a past relationship knowing they could have done more? If you are going to be in a marriage don’t think you get to skip the stages by getting out of one marriage and into another. If you always get out at stage three are you really getting anywhere?

All married couples should learn the art of battle as they should learn the art of making love. Good battle is objective and honest – never vicious or cruel. Good battle is healthy and constructive and brings to a marriage the principles of equal partnership. Ann Landers

Ann Landers is onto something here. We have to be able to talk things out. A silent marriage is a dying marriage. We need to be able to talk about the small things so they don’t become so big we can’t talk about them. Tiptoeing around the elephant, cleaning up its dodo and pretending it isn’t there is not healthy. Sometimes just like ripping off a band-aid, we just need to say what needs to be said. Then we can start anew. Not acknowledging a problem is a problem, you can fix it, you can live with it, you can laugh about it, but you can’t pretend it isn’t there and think it won’t affect your relationship.

I was one of the girls who read in a magazine, “a woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.” I wasn’t one who was dying to get married. I’ve loved being married; I think my husband is the anchor to my balloon. We are more together than we are apart.

Someone asked me if I would want to renew my vows. I said, ”No, we meant them when we said them.” Renewing vows to me would be if something happened and we separated. Coming together again and renewing our vows would have meaning. To renew vows just to have a party. I’m not the starry-eyed bride, and unless we were to do something really stupid what we said then and meant, stands today. As a matter of fact, when my husband and I see couples renewing their vows over and over again we look at each other expecting a divorce in the future. We aren’t often wrong.

Some people have floated the idea of renewing commitments every five years. I’m horrified at the thought. How could anyone have any security in the marriage? How many marriages would be at one of the hard spots? Get married to the right person, and be the right person. Say what you mean and mean what you say, and say it with as much love and compassion as you can manage.

Marriage is a journey, not a destination. Saying “I do,” is just the beginning. We have to go forward committed to getting through the days, weeks, months, years that follow with as much humor, compassion, and love as possible.

A great marriage is not when the perfect couple comes together. It is when an imperfect couple learns to enjoy their differences. Dave Meurer 

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the Amazon. ca link I may receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate program.

Kindle App Ad
Love is a Verb: Stories of What Happens When Love Comes Alive by [Chapman, Gary]

Follow the Authors

See all

Gary Chapman+ Follow

Connie Pombo+ Follow

Love is a Verb: Stories of What Happens When Love Comes Alive Kindle Edition

by Gary Chapman (Author)

4.5 out of 5 stars    2 customer reviews

 See all 9 formats and editions

If we don’t develop self-control we will be controlled. Self-mastery is self-control, self-control leads to self-respect.

Self-mastery is self-control, self-control leads to self-respect. If we don't develop self-control we will be controlled.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Better a patient person than a warrior, one with self-control than one who takes a city. Proverbs 16:32

Last night my son showed me a podcast by a woman who had her podcasts impact her husband’s business. She says it won’t deter her. She is going to talk about things she thinks need to be talked about.

I bought a book the other day The Gift Of Change by Marianne Williamson and in the very beginning of the book she says. The times in which we live are difficult, more difficult than a lot of people seem willing to admit. There is an abiding sense of collective anxiety, understandable but not easy to talk about.

My son was asking me the other night. Did I think I was a good communicator with my Toastmasters, blogging, writing, etc? Yes, I told him I think I am a pretty good communicator. My son and I have the same problem we love to hear ourselves talk. We think we are pretty good at it. That is not communication. If we want to communicate we have to become good listeners.

In my life, I’ve incorporated listening and asking questions more but not enough. Instead of just discounting what someone says I should question what makes them feel that way, or look at it that way, or feel that is the right course of action.

We are hearing in the news about groups whose goal is to get rid of capitalism. They want to replace it with something better. The only problem is, what is better? No society has seemingly found better. We live in a society that mostly works. How do we build a society that is fair to every citizen? It is impossible I believe because those who have talents, skills, ambitions; others do not have will do better. Do we only want to offer equal opportunity equal to those without any opportunity?

My mother has many grandchildren and their abilities, talents, interests, goals are not the same. One of them has Down syndrome, should everyone’s opportunities and choices be limited because his choices are? How else could we make it fair? What would fair look like? If everyone has the opportunity they go after without imposed ceilings on their accomplishments outside of themselves, isn’t that better?

Many of us impose conditions on ourselves; we say we can’t do something because of our own limiting beliefs, not anything imposed by society. We all have to deal with that.

George Bernard Shaw was asked who he would have been in all of history if given the choice. He replied, “The George Bernard Shaw I might have been.”

Like a city whose walls are broken through is a person who lacks self-control. Proverbs 25:28

There are so many opportunities and choices we could have made. Every choice eliminates other choices. We can’t possibly have taken advantage of every opportunity. Many opportunities we don’t recognize until we look back. We need to go forward in life with some humility, trust, and kindness towards our former self. Did we do the best we knew how to do? Sometimes it is hard to believe the choices we made were the best we knew how to make. Why out of all the choices we had, did we make the worst possible one?

Maybe we have lessons to learn we can learn no other way. In Marianne Williamson’s book, she says sometimes we need to illuminate the changes we need to make. Only when we can really see them through an obvious screw up can we decide to change and go forward, better.

Oprah says life sends us a whisper, then a holler, then maybe a brick to our head. At some point, we need to recognize there is something within ourselves we need to change. If we can recognize and change things within ourselves perhaps we can have some empathy for other people and where they need to grow and change.

What if we could try and understand where some of the people are coming from who seem hopeless and lash out at society in the worst ways? What are they trying to tell us? How are we failing as a society to meet the needs of everyone? Who are we privileging over others? Who used to have the privileges? Who feels they have no opportunity?

Many men these days feel we are privileging women over men. I see in my own life that I have privileges by being a woman. As a woman, we are more allowed to dabble in things than get serious about life and be able to support a family. We still have the opportunity to choose motherhood over paid work. The Government even helps us do it. It seems we have some women choosing the security of the Government stipend over that of a husband. Men are feeling rejected by women, used by women, judged by women.

My son tells me he thinks it is much harder for an ugly man than for an ugly woman. Monogamy works especially for men where there is a woman for pretty much every man. Maybe some men are finding it hard to find a mate now that women have more choice? With the choices we women have, are we making the right ones? Aren’t many of us putting off marriage and motherhood too long? When we choose motherhood without a husband, and our children have no fathers in their life don’t our children and society suffer?

Our ambitions outside of motherhood can often be attained after motherhood is no longer an option. If my brain holds out my writing can continue if I’m lucky until I die.

It’s a little late to go back and be the “barrel racer” I might have been.

I never thought of myself as old fashioned but I am embracing family values and religious principles that our society was built on because what is the moral compass to replace them?

We control ourselves or we become controlled. Throughout history, it seems women were controlled. If we don’t want to be controlled we will have to control ourselves. Self-control in men is called being a gentleman.  Self-control is equally important for women. We need to become our own control boards; we need to censor our own behaviors.

We can do it if we choose to. How long will the window of self-control and responsibility be an option? If we don’t take it will we go back to being controlled?

Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. Titus 1:8

“I have the right to do anything,” you say – but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything” – but I will not be mastered by anything. 1 Corinthians 6:12

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the link I may receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate program.

See all 2 images

The Gift of Change: Spiritual Guidance for Living Your Best Life Paperback – Jan 3 2006

by Marianne Williamson (Author) 4.4 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

 See all 16 formats and editions

Live today. Don’t wait to be happy tomorrow. Tomorrow never comes only today is here to live, love, and be grateful for.

Tomorrow never comes only today is here to live, love, and be grateful for. Live today. Don't wait to be happy tomorrow.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Live today. Not yesterday. Not tomorrow. Just today. Inhabit your moments. Don’t rent them out to tomorrow. Jerry Spinelli

I was listening to Tony Robbins last night talking about how some of us find success but not fulfillment.

We often think we are not enough and true happiness comes with “more.” If we just get the right “more” we will be happy and fulfilled. Happiness and fulfillment don’t come from what we can get, buy, accomplish, it comes from our progress. Do we have meaning and purpose? I took my dog for a walk this morning.  A morning walk is a time for reflection on the abundance I have in my life. That the streets are safe to walk, that there are sidewalks, that my dog is healthy enough to walk and so am I. There is so much to be grateful for. I sip the coffee my husband made and was waiting for me when I got back from my walk. A small pleasure, we had a laugh this morning, another small pleasure.

There is so much to enjoy, and there is so much to complain about. This is our choice, do we complain or are we grateful for all the good in our lives. No matter what the circumstances are in our lives we choose to be happy or not. We may not be able to choose a lot of things in our lives but our reaction to all the bounty and beauty even if it isn’t as much bounty or beauty as we hoped for is a choice. The sunrise is beautiful, and we get one every day.

We eat and drink every day; we can enjoy this simple pleasure or wish it was in a better locale with better company. Even when we eat alone we should enjoy our own company. Things can and will be different, but will they be better? Isn’t a cup of coffee in Tuscany still just a cup of coffee, and aren’t our thoughts still our thoughts, and our companions still our companions?

What makes some people live fulfilled lives? Often these aren’t remarkable lives, they are happy lives. These are people who sing while they do their laundry, and whistle while they walk.

Plan for tomorrow, live for today.

Tomorrow – a mystical land where 99% of all human productivity, motivation, and achievement is stored. Unknown

The most terrible thing that could happen to us is we realize our dreams but don’t find fulfillment? How could this happen we ask ourselves. The answer according to all the gurus seems to be that because we take ourselves with us wherever we go our set point of gratitude, happiness, and fulfillment is always there. If we didn’t feel fulfilled with one hundred dollars in our pocket, what makes us think we’ll be fulfilled with more?

We feel entitled, but entitled to what? Happiness, joy, and gratitude are available to each of us no matter where we are born or what our circumstances. People live happy grateful lives in circumstances we can’t imagine. They are grateful for one more day, one more meal, one more laugh.

Unmet expectations are one of the things that hold us back from happiness. My husband told me the other day he doesn’t like arguing. It’s true some of our conversations get heated; some of our points of view are diametrically opposed. What about the fact we are lucky to have someone to share a point of view with? What about the fact we aren’t talking to four walls, listening to a clock tick?

There seems to be no middle ground anymore. If you aren’t for us, you are against us. What happened to you have some good ideas, but I don’t like them all. You have a point, but some of what you say is ridiculous. Don’t we all think that, even if we don’t say it?

Today is all we have, we aren’t promised tomorrow. If we don’t enjoy today because we are waiting for that perfect time, perfect accomplishment, perfect purchase, perfect person, perfect whatever far off in the future how will we ever be happy? We are missing our life, it is today. If we enjoy today, it is likely we will also enjoy tomorrow with whatever it brings. If we don’t enjoy today why would we think we will be grateful, happy, and joyful tomorrow?

Tomorrow never comes, because when it gets here it is today. Are we enjoying today?

My advice is to never do tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of time. Charles Dickens

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, love, joy, and happiness.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the link I may receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate link.

See all 3 images

Notes from a Friend: A Quick and Simple Guide to Taking Control of Your Life Paperback – Aug 1 1995

by Tony Robbins (Author) 4.0 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

 See all 4 formats and editions

At some point, we will all need to rebuild trust.

Trust will need to be rebuilt in our lives, probably many times.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Two people cannot long be friends if they cannot forgive each other’s little failings. Jean De La Bruyere

Trust is essential to our relationships, our government, our companies, our lives. Where trust is high we live in peace and plenty, we work together, we raise families together, and we progress.

There doesn’t seem to be an origin of the “Gentleman’s Agreement.” According to the Oxford English Dictionary P.G. Woodhouse, an English author used the term in his 1929 story collection Mr. Mulliner Speaking. The phrase appears in British Parliamentary records of 1821. It also appears in Massachusetts public records of 1835.

A gentleman’s agreement is an informal agreement in which people trust one another to do what they have promised because of their sense of personal honor.

In 2016 after carefully examining the evidence, the British High Court ruled that a gentleman’s agreement could be legally binding. However, there must have been an intention to create legal relations.

An Associated Press-Gfk poll finds declining levels of trust among Americans. Only a third now say most people can be trusted, down from half in 1972. Are we actually becoming less trustworthy – or are more of us less trusting? Is this a self-fulfilling prophecy? If we don’t give trust, we don’t get trust.

Social trust brings benefits to our society: people are more willing to compromise, make deals, and work together. Trust boosts our economy. If there is an area where our trust is put to work every day it is on our roads. We trust the other driver to stay in their lane, to observe the rules of the road and drive as safely as they can so we all arrive where we are going safely. It mostly works.

We’ve always had people in our societies we couldn’t trust. How could we have any commerce if we don’t trust? Do I give you the goods before you pay me? Do you pay me before you get the goods? Someone has to trust someone.

I was at Toastmaster’s one evening and I watched a transaction going down. A young man took a buddy to sell a cell phone. The buyer looked at the cell phone then took off as fast as he could and broke the door to the Community Center in the process.

How could anyone sell anything online without trust? Will reduced face-to-face interaction reduce trust as we aren’t dealing directly with someone? Will the ease of non-face-to-face transactions make our life so much easier we can’t afford to not be trustworthy?

Trust, of course, is very important in our relationships. I recently read about a parent who had a son who got into problems. They said they could not have him living in their home doing drugs. He was welcome to come every Sunday for dinner and bring as many people as he wished for a no judgment hot dinner. They said it was a motley crew they served dinner to many times. Eventually, he changed his ways and one of the things he said that got him through it was he believed he could show up for dinner with his assortment of friends, and they would be fed with big helpings of love, and no sermon.

If because of one’s mistake you lost trust, then no one in the world is trustworthy, including yourself! Unknown

I’m looking at a blog by Jeremy Brown he says. “At some point or another, no matter how wonderful your marriage is or how many bluebirds chirp on your windowsill in the morning, someone will screw up and trust will be broken. It could be something small (watching a show you are both enjoying without your partner or pretending to work late to get out of plans with those friends), or something big (not coming clean about a secret credit card or, gulp, an affair). When something of this nature happens, one of you will need to work to earn the other’s trust back. Sure, groveling can help. But the process of earning someone’s trust back is nuanced and requires thoughtful actions and quite a bit of patience. So how do you rebuild trust? Here are some steps to take.”

Own up to it.

Offering any sort of justification for our actions or minimizing them will only make our spouse shut down and feel doubly hurt.

Be honest.

Keep your promises.

Realize that things might never be the same. We can do our best, but we can’t make our partner forgive us entirely, or forget. If we can be respectful and go into the process of repair with an open heart and mind, and an awareness of all outcomes being for the highest good for both parties it is what we can do.

Accept that earning back trust takes time.

If we are committed to earning back trust we have to be in it for the long haul. If we want someone to forgive us on our timetable we are being selfish. We need to learn to sit with our own shame and not let it destroy ourselves and those we love.

Focus on consistency.

Keep our words and actions consistent. Our spouse’s image of us has been shaken and they are looking for stability wherever they can find it. Doing what we say we are going to do will show we are trustworthy. We should not discount the power of consistency when it comes to rebuilding trust.

Mistakes will happen in our marriage, getting through them is part of having a lasting marriage. If we forgive when it’s our turn we can hope they will forgive us when it is theirs. Have we forgiven when it was our turn to forgive or do we hold onto old hurts?

To regain trust you need to prove how much you love through actions not words. Words fall empty to the person who lost trust in you. Unknown

Rebuilding trust when it’s been broken is not dependent on the person who has broken it, or how many times they can prove they are honest. It depends on the person who has decided not to trust anymore. Though they may be totally justified in their decision not to trust, as long as they choose not to, the relationship has no hope of survival.

When they decide to trust again, there is hope reborn.  Doe Zantamata

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the link I may receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate program.

See all 4 images

The SPEED of Trust: The One Thing That Changes Everything Paperback – Feb 5 2008

by Stephen M.R. Covey (Author), Stephen R. Covey (Foreword), Rebecca R. Merrill (Contributor) 4.5 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

 See all 37 formats and editions

Inspired by Oprah and Jordan B. Peterson. It’s never too late to learn something.

It's never too late to learn something. Inspired by Oprah and Jordan B. Peterson.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

You don’t inspire others by being perfect. You inspire them by how you deal with imperfections. Unknown

Last night I listened to a Podcast by Oprah she talked about her early life. How one day at four years old her Grandmother was hanging clothes on the line and her Grandmother said. “You need to watch and learn you’ll be doing this someday.”

Oprah said it was like there was a voice in her head that said, “No Grandma, I won’t.” When I listen to Oprah’s story it seems like she is a child of destiny.  When her baby died she was fourteen and her father said, “You got a second chance; I don’t know why you got a second chance but make the best of it.”

She says she doesn’t believe in luck, she believes in preparation for the opportunity. When we are prepared and the opportunity arises, if we take the opportunity presented, and we find our passion and purpose we are off to doing and becoming what we are meant to do and become.

I’ve always felt a kinship with Oprah. She was starting the Oprah show and I was starting my marriage. This is the magic of Oprah, she made a lot of us feel she understood the challenges, questions, and insecurities we have. She talked about the things we wanted to talk about. She has faith and she’s willing to talk about it, but not too much, she doesn’t hammer it over our heads.

But a role model in the flesh provides more than inspiration; his or her very existence is confirmation of possibilities one may have every reason to doubt, saying, “Yes, someone like me can do this.” Sonia Sotomayor

It seems to me she’s never allowed anyone to hold anything over on her. When people pried into her life and found things she might not be proud of she owned them and we loved her for it. We too have things we aren’t proud of, maybe we wouldn’t own them as she did, but she gave us the courage to think we might.

I picked up a book called The Speed of Trust and this is what Oprah has. We trust her to be her best and to help us be our best. Has Oprah ever whined about anything? I can’t remember once. She broke through so many stereotypes to be who she is. Many of us have probably wondered how do we become an Oprah? The answer of course is we can’t. She realized early on she couldn’t be a copycat Barbara Walters even though Barbara inspired her greatly. She could be the best Oprah she could be.

It seems Oprah took all the good advice given to her and built her life around it. The Podcast last night ended I think when she was twenty-two. I will continue listening. Podcasts are great because unlike TV we can do something else while we listen and learn.

I listened to Jordan B. Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life as I gardened last year. There are many great podcasts we can listen to while we do some of the things we need to in our life. If we watch TV there goes our night of exercise, pulling weeds, creating art, or any number of valuable pursuits.

Our life is what we make it. Each day we have twenty-four hours. Over forty years we see what we’ve done with those days. More days spread before us, what will we do with them? What will the next five, ten, twenty, or forty years look like?

It seems Oprah has never stopped learning; she isn’t just rehashing what she has always done. Her journey continues and that might be what inspires us the most.

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more. You are a leader. John Quincy Adams

True leadership must be for the benefit of the followers, not to enrich the leader. John C. Maxwell

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, hope, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the link I may receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate program.

Inspiration: Your Ultimate Calling by [Dyer, Wayne W.]
Kindle App Ad

Follow the Author

Wayne W. Dyer+ Follow

Inspiration: Your Ultimate Calling Kindle Edition

by Wayne W. Dyer (Author)

5.0 out of 5 stars    12 customer reviews

 See all 14 formats and editions

Why do we have angry young men with guns in their hands? What are the questions, what are the answers?

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

In the West, we have been withdrawing from our traditions, religion and even nation-centred cultures, partly to decrease the danger of group conflict. But we are increasingly falling prey to the desperation of meaninglessness, and that is no improvement at all.
― Jordan B. Peterson

What do you write on a beautiful summer morning when the news is consumed with the mass shootings that occurred recently? We are only hearing about it because of the numbers of dead and wounded.

Are rage and anger growing in our societies? Do rage and anger feel powerful?

When we have access to a gun does it mean instead of feeling powerless we can feel really powerful, “Ignore me now!”

What are the answers? What are the questions? What are the triggers? What could get someone angry, enraged, set on killing and then decide not to do it? How many think about it, but don’t do it?

What are we not seeing, acknowledging, and addressing?

Is angry, mostly young men with a gun in their hands a recipe for disaster?

Boys love guns if they weren’t given toy guns to play with they made them out of what they were allowed to play with. Having access to a gun is part of the problem, but what is the other part?

A man devoid of hope and conscious of being so has ceased to belong to the future.” 
― Albert Camus

I don’t think that you have any insight whatsoever into your capacity for good until you have some well-developed insight into your capacity for evil.” … Jordan Peterson

Is part of the answer finding meaning and purpose? Finding something to channel all that testosterone and energy into for the good of themselves and others? Some say the way of peace is warriors learning to sheath their swords, that passivity is not the answer. The peaceful warrior is the answer. Do young men who kill feel like warriors?

According to what I am reading many men who commit mass shootings tend to be those who have failed to achieve financial and romantic success in ways our society values and accredits as “manly.”

Do we need to teach boys and young men to be peaceful warriors? Are we encouraging passivity instead of powerful self-control?

Is part of the problem the pressure to get more when many people especially young men feel they are likely to get less? Can angry young men learn to be peaceful warriors?

Sitting Bull said, “For us, warriors are not what you think of as warriors. The warrior is not someone who fights… The warrior is one who sacrifices himself for the good of others.”

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, hope, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the link I may receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate program.

See all 2 images

12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos Hardcover – Jan 23 2018

by Jordan B. Peterson (Author, Contributor) 4.7 out of 5 stars 1,162 customer reviewsAmazon Charts #3 this week

 See all 11 formats and editions

Perseverance, challenges, and choices shape our lives. Perseverance is not one long straight race; it is getting through the peaks and valley of life.

Perseverance is not one long straight race; it is getting through the peaks and valleys of life. Perseverance, challenges, and choices shape our lives.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

When the world says “Give up,” Hope whispers, “Try it one more time.” Unknown

The mornings are getting cooler. A jacket or sweater in the morning is no longer optional for me. Some hardy souls I’m sure are still wearing short sleeves. My husband is already out on appointments it isn’t 7:00 am yet.

One of the things true of life is the importance of perseverance.  It doesn’t matter what we undertake there will be a point when persevering is what is most important. We have a morning routine we don’t feel like doing, but if we persevere we will feel glad we did.

How many people look back on relationships they wish they’d persevered with? There is always stuff to deal with, and things rarely go in straight lines. The path to success can be so slow that sometimes we aren’t sure if we are going down or up, but if we persevere it becomes clear.

Perseverance is required to achieve any degree of success. We don’t need to be perfect but we do need to persevere. There are perks to persevering. If we’ve persevered at one thing we have confidence we can persevere at another. We can trust ourselves, and others can trust us. When we persevere through the valleys of life we can enjoy the peaks. No one gets to hop from peak to peak. Some people handle the valleys so well we don’t realize what they are going through, that doesn’t mean they don’t get their share of challenges and questioning if it’s worth it.

We will need the patience to persevere, we will need to make sacrifices to persevere, but most of all we need to realize when we want to give up we must dig deep to keep going. As we get over our hurdles we will know we can handle the next one as well.

Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did. Newt Gingrich

If we listen to anyone’s story of achievement it always seems they had many times when they could have given up.  They kept going and they achieved success. Many of us achieve success in one area but perhaps we gave up in another. Maybe we had to choose between two goods, a good marriage, or a good career. The time given to one would take from the other. We made a choice. These choices shape our lives.

Maybe we gave up a career to stay at home and raise our children. There are moments when we may think we made a mistake. When we look at happy, well-adjusted adults we feel we made the right choice. When we look at our retirement plan we might think we should have made a different choice.

Life is full of choices. My daughter wonders when having a baby fits into her schedule. I tell her a baby will fit into her life. There will be new choices to make, new challenges to face, and new paths to persevere with. Everything we want in life means something else may go by the wayside. Some choices we make consciously some not so consciously. Other choices we make not knowing everything that comes with it.

Having a baby is like that, we choose to become a family but often we are only seeing the tip of that iceberg. There is so much more that comes with it, so much of our life becomes dedicated to this most important facet of our lives. It becomes the only facet we can manage. That too passes and we have time for a more balanced life.

We will make mistakes; we will not always make the right choice. We may have to pick up balls we have dropped. We may have to try and repair balls that have cracked; we may have to move on from balls that are broken beyond repair.

Knowing when to hold and when to fold in life is a skill we hope we have. We may think we know what the best choice is and overtime may wish we’d made a different choice. Sometimes no matter how well one thing turns out, we still think of the other choice. Sometimes we can go forward and pick up that ball we left behind, sometimes we can’t.

To get through life with “no regrets” sounds like an impossibility, but can we aspire to have few regrets? Are there choices we have to make that we’ve been putting off? Is there something we need to persevere with? Is there a challenge we need to face?

Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful. Joshua J. Marine

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the link I may receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate program.

See this image

Grit Hardcover – May 3 2016

by Angela Duckworth (Author, Contributor) 4.5 out of 5 stars 68 customer reviews#1 Best Sellerin Geology

 See all 4 formats and editions

Escape rooms and team building. Are you up for a challenge?

Team building and escape rooms.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory. George Jesson

Last night a group of five of us went to an “Escape Room” as a team-building exercise. We had forty-five minutes to get out, and we could call for assistance three times. We got out before forty-five minutes were up and we didn’t use all of our assistance calls. None of us had been to an escape room before.

We were escaping from a plane crash. We had many combination locks to figure out. and we had to figure out the combinations from clues that were planted. When we got the first door open, it opened to a completely dark room, when one of our team found a battery to put in the flashlight we’d found when we unlocked one of the boxes we could see what we had to unlock to send out our SOS call for help. Then we had to unlock more locks to finally find cables to attach to a board using Morse code to locate the correct positions and the door opened. We needed almost all of our forty-five minutes.

It was a fun experience and different escape rooms will need different skill sets. Now that I’ve tried one it would be fun to try others where the challenges will be different. One of our members has specific training that helped us. We have picked up knowledge and skills in life that comes in handy. What kind of escape room is there that my particular skills would come in handy? It was a fun evening. It would be a great group activity for a birthday or other celebration.

People may be leaders in one situation and followers in another. With a team, everyone contributes something. There was a live snake in a cage in the room. We were told there was a live animal in the room. It might be a deal-breaker for one of my friends who can’t look at a picture of a snake. I wonder if they have had people who panicked and said let me out “now?”

We learn things about our self and other people when we are presented with challenges. Sometimes we rise to the occasion, sometimes we do not. We may think specific people will take charge, but someone else may be the one.

If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.  Unknown

It’s not the mountain we conquer but ourselves. Edmund Hillary

This would be a great experience for couples. Can they work together to figure things out? Would this be a good challenge for couples on the cusp of marriage? What might we learn about our self, or someone else?

We don’t know how we’ll react in situations until we are actually in them. This is a way of putting ourselves in situations we’ve never been in before. We can face the challenges we’ve never faced.

Some escape room managers say they see the same people come and bring different dates. It would be a fun experience for the date, and the person bringing them knows how to solve the clues, so they look like a hero. Everyone wins. Don’t we take someone dancing where we know the dance?

On a blog, someone says they have played 100 escape room games. It is easy to see how once one has experienced one, another, and another, and another might be calling to us. They each have their own theme, and different knowledge and skillsets are required to figure out the clues and beat the game. If these escape rooms are set up so 30 percent of the players get out within the allotted time then we may think if I’d done that sooner, or got that clue quicker? Let me try another one. If we find the right escape room maybe we will be the star of our team, the one that cracked the code no one else could get.

What does it take to be the mastermind to set up the games? How profitable are they? A group was finishing when we arrived. A group was going in after us.

I worked with two brothers who started a paintball business when paintball wars were all the rage. They said they had a trunk full of paintball guns in their trunk when the Pope was here on a visit. If they got stopped by the police they would have looked like assassins up to no good.

Are you looking for a new fun experience? There is probably an escape room near you. You may learn something about yourself and those you go with.

Keep challenging yourself. That’s the only way forward in life. Unknown      

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, adventure, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the link I may receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate link.

See all 2 images

Escape the Game: How to Make Puzzles and Escape Rooms Paperback – Aug 3 2016

by Adam Clare (Author), Samet Choudhury (Illustrator) 3.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

 See all 2 formats and editions

Is courage the most important virtue? Is our comfort zone killing us?

Is our comfort zone killing us? Is courage the most important virtue?

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Can a man still be brave if he’s afraid? That is the only time a man can be brave his father told him. Game of Thrones

It takes courage to live a good life. It takes courage to stand up to injustice. It takes courage to question bad laws and the status quo. It takes courage to raise a family. It takes courage to stand in front of a group and pledge our troth. It takes courage to leave marriages that aren’t working. It takes courage to stay and try to rebuild a troubled marriage. It takes courage to change anything in our lives.

Courage is needed in every part of our lives. Maya Angelou said courage is the most important virtue because without courage we won’t be strong enough to embrace any of the other virtues.

Courage is hard because it can’t exist without fear. To understand courage we first have to understand fear. Courage is facing our fears and doing something anyway. Courageous people never stop feeling scared, and we have to be okay with this. Courage only feels good when the scary thing is over. There is always another fear to face and overcome. This is the cycle of life.

Do we need to step out of our comfort zone if we are to discover our passion, accomplish our goals, and find happiness? We can get set in our ways, we keep doing what we’ve always done, and we keep getting what we’ve always gotten. How can anything change if nothing changes?

In life, they say we are either growing or dying. Growth is about progress. Progress is about movement. Movement is about stepping outside our comfort zone and pushing our self to the next level.

Every ceiling when reached becomes a floor upon which one walks. Every fearful opportunity that seems completely out of our grasp will eventually feel more comfortable as you face the fear. You will then be amazed at how much anxiety the thought of it used to give you. Aldous Huxley

Do we always read the same books, think the same thoughts, go to the same type of places, eat at the same restaurants.  One of my book club buddies goes with her family on a trip every year. They were going on cruises and down to the Caribbean. They got out of their comfort zone and went to Morocco or Turkey and were blown away by the experience. Now they want to see the world and for their anniversary are going to Tuscany.   

We hear about bucket lists, maybe we have one. That is a way of getting out of our comfort zone. Meeting new people and joining new groups can get us out of our comfort zone.

I keep writing about Toastmasters because public speaking for most people is out of their comfort zone. It is a powerful way to push our self and we see growth in ourselves and other people who get up and tell their stories haltingly, emotionally, and hesitantly become bolder, confident, and pursue other goals.

Stress is fear in disguise. If we call it fear we know we should face it. If we call it stress it seems like something we can’t do anything about. We feel quite comfortable saying “I’m so stressed”, who among us would be so comfortable saying “I’m so scared?”

Do we need to face our fears and be comfortable with being uncomfortable? Isn’t it also important to create balance in our lives? Our comfort zone may be killing us if we don’t get out of it enough. Watching TV is comfortable but it isn’t good for us if we do it too much. Is it bad to enjoy a TV show with a snack and our family around us? No, we should create a balance between being in our comfort zone and stepping out of it. Are we challenging ourselves enough? Are we relaxing enough? Can we embrace courage the most important virtue?

You have brains in your head, you have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own and you know what you know, and you are the guy who will decide where to go. Dr. Seus

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the link I may receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate program.

See all 2 images

Your comfort zone is killing you: Finding the courage to be you Paperback – Oct 20 2014

by Billy Anderson (Author) 4.6 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

 See all 4 formats and editions