daily gratitude

gratitude

First I remember, I am not entitled to this life. This morning, like every morning (and each and every moment in-between) is a true gift and I receive it with arms wide open.

The daily practice of appreciation

One of the most helpful  rituals I practice every morning is upon waking up, no matter what is on my mind – worry, fear, anxiety about the day; I quickly redirect my thoughts to write down precisely what I am grateful for, so I can recall the abundance I already have. Sure there are plenty of problems to face today, but these are first world problems. With gratitude, I can handle them. It’s a privilege to have these problems. Yes, I get to do this today. I’m given the opportunity to work through these problems today. Thank you.

Beginning each day with gratitude elevates my level of happiness and peace of mind; allowing me to focus on the greatness of my life and all that I already have. A deep appreciation for where I am right now that empowers me and inspires me to awaken to this very moment and this amazing new day.

It is so simple, so mood altering and elevating. In order to feel truly grateful, I choose to recall all of the incredible blessings that I have right now, including my family, my friends and my hopes, dreams and aspirations.

“This a wonderful day. I’ve never seen this one before.” Maya Angelou

visioneering

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What does it really take to start a movement? To get people going? To formulate a new idea?

“Visionaries, prophets, and revolutionaries aren’t concerned with good manners, being nice, fitting in; what they’re concerned with, passionately, singly, often monomaniacally, is the truth.

“It’s popular to think the world gets changed by delightful people,” as Rebecca Solnit says, “but agents of change are often obsessive, intransigent, unreasonable, and demanding.”

Must Read
We Learn Nothing: Essays

out of the mouths of babes

mouth

Much of the noise on our planet is made by one species: Humanity.  What do other people unconsciously hear and feel when they hear me (you) speak?  What are the cross modal effects of my (your) communication with others?  From the feedback of my frustrating failed efforts to get my point across (not always, but often and mostly about very important subjects with people who mean so much to me), I realize that I must focus on transforming my tone. Wait, not just my tone, but my register, timbre, prosody, pace, pitch and volume.

The goal – to develop a more authentic voice while finding the courage to communicate more purposely and compassionately. To develop a more powerful and expressive voice and ability to listen while ultimately creating healthier relationships. I think of it as taking the tightness and toughness out of my talk.

The act of tuning in and turning ON a softer, more encouraging voice, will begin to turn my speech into my truth. My voice and words should empower those around me, not make them angry and defensive.

The objective is to take the anger and pain out of circulation, which in turn will help to heal.

Imagine creating sound consciously and consuming sound consciously and designing all of our environments consciously for sound. Designing a world where understanding would become the norm.

Watching & Learning

Julian Treasure “How to Speak So People Listen” Ted Talks

heart work

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There is no “soul mate” version of purpose.
It doesn’t make sense to worry so much about finding your “passion”. 
Note to self. Dive in. Just get going – try stuff. Experiment.
Do what I (really) enjoy.
Heart work, hard work and hustle tend to reveal purpose.
Listening to @Jon Acuff on The Unmistakable Creative podcast.

crushing it

canon-my-last-weekend-077There are more things in life that are likely to frighten us than there are to actually crush us. We suffer more in imagination than in reality.

For truth has its own definite boundaries but that which arises from uncertainty is delivered over to guesswork and the irresponsible license of a frightened mind.

fearless mind = free mind.

Studying
Letters from a Stoic (Penguin Classics)

utopia

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If you think about it, an enormous amount of damage is created by the myth of utopia. There is an intrinsic feeling in nearly every person that your life could be perfect if you only had such-and-such a car or such-and-such a spouse or such-and-such a job.  We believe we will be made whole by our accomplishments, our possessions, or our social status. It’s written in the fabric of our DNA that life used to be beautiful and now it isn’t, and if only this and if only that, it would be beautiful again.

The human story goes on.

Read more

A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: How I Learned to Live a Better Story

Image from Cornell University

a masterpiece

mind

For love of bustle is not industry, it is only the restlessness of a hunted mind.

I like to play this game. I imagine a professional creative director documenting my day. A camera crew filming my every move, following me around, filming this very day and this day signifying what I did with my life.

How would I want that masterpiece to roll? No edits, just raw footage. Would I want my name on the credits?

Read more philosophy from Lucius Annaeus Seneca
Letters from a Stoic (Penguin Classics)

talk is cheap

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love is most potent when put into action. It’s like a verb right? To love. Do Love.
How do you do love?
A little love spice in your cooking? a perfect love pitch in your singing? a stroke of love in your painting? a stronger, deeper and more loving way of listening?
Remember, if you have received today, some one else gave and hopefully with love.
We are here to serve each other.
A bit of give and take, every day.

how to be

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Often we devote our primary attention to the facts of our lives, to the situation at hand, to our work and status. Most of our energy goes into doing.  Many people wonder where they should be and what they should do, when in fact they should be more concerned about how to be.

We can control only what we do and say, what choices we make, what words we say. The rest is up to fate. And so life has positive and negative turns. And rarely do you see them coming.

Read
A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: What I Learned While Editing My Life by Donald Miller 1st (first) Edition [Hardcover(2009)]

Study
Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom

just enough

crave

How long shall we go on making demands upon the gods, as if we were still unable to support ourselves?  How small is the amount, which will satisfy nature? A very little will send her away contented.

It is not the natural hunger of our bellies that cost us dear, but our solicitous cravings.

Read

Letters from a Stoic (Penguin Classics)