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How was your day?

I was in an earthquake in Mexico City; 7.1.

How do you work that into casual conversation?  Yesterday at about 1:15 pm local time, a powerful earthquake shook the bejeezus out my training class; our lunch break; my colleagues and me!  Thankfully, no one in our group got hurt.

Please pray for those in Mexico City and surrounding states that did get hurt; over 200 people killed; hundreds if not thousands injured.  According to The Guardian ©;

It was the second major earthquake to hit Mexico in two weeks and came on the anniversary of the 1985 quake that devastated Mexico City, killing 5,000 people and destroying 10,000 homes.

Because of the anniversary and to commemorate that devastation we actually had an emergency evacuation drill scheduled for 11 am.  Just 2 hours before the real thing!  How do you work that into casual conversation?

During the episode, I wasn’t afraid; but I was not brave either.  I was conscious of the fact we were experiencing an earthquake – on the 19th floor of a hotel!.  What started out feeling like a freight train passing by, causing the table to vibrate quickly erupted into what seemed like a prolonged period of ferocious shaking; I could not keep my feet.

Those much braver and more capable than I were calling out; directing us towards the room’s framed archway.  Firmly they instructed us to move away from the windows; calmly, they reassured us that we will be alright.

I can remember looking out the window and seeing the glass buildings across the plaza moving and swaying.  It was surreal; reminded me of that scene in movie The Matrix when a disturbance rippled through the facade of an office tower.

In today’s aftermath, my overriding feeling is one of disappointment.  So many had invested so much before the earthquake hit – and after.  Gustavo Moussalli, out Latin American Division Director and the executive sponsor for the class made a huge commitment to his local partners; coordinating a 3-day enablement class to help contribute to their success.

Gerardo Diez Martinez, our local Channel Manager made all the logistical arrangements.  The meeting rooms and room set-up; AV equipment; food and beverage; Gerardo spared no expense to insure we would have everything needed to support his partners.

My colleague Susanna Lagtapon sacrificed time her daughter’s 13th birthday; traveling instead to join us for the class.  My colleague, Tony Caporal, whose cooler head and bravery prevailed following the earthquake; helping us retrieve our laptops and luggage.  (Even stopping at the lobby bar to grab a free beer on his way out.)

Our VP, Brian Enright, being our “home base”; coordinating flights out of town; hotel reservations; and anything else he could do to support us from afar.

And especially Hector Garcia from our long-time partner NetSoft.  Hector insisted on personally driving us to the airport; would not hear of us taking a taxi or a private car.  He would navigate us through the city streets; on constant vigil for our safety.  Three hours to drive us 12 kilometers.  Three hours in the opposite direction from his own home and family – taking us in his care.

As with all disasters, there were many heroes – named and unnamed.

But that was yesterday; Mexico City; and an earthquake.  Today, it’s hurricane Maria pounding Puerto Rico; last week it was hurricane Irma pounding Florida; the week before that is was storms and flooding in Houston.  Many heroes indeed – named and unnamed.

Thank you all and my God bless.

GAP

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Class of 2029…

That’s my grandson’s class – the class of 2029.  WOW!  Now I feel old.

During my grandson’s recent kindergarten graduation event I thought a lot about education; learning; and knowledge over the generations.  It was fun to observe the family and friends of the kindergarten kids.  It was fun to observe the kids!

It occurred to me during that morning that everything I want to learn – my cell phone already knows.  I mean, if you think about what we need to think about in 2017 our little, cellular devices have put every answer to any question at our fingertips (and now at Alexa and Siri’s “fingertips”).  WOW!  Now I feel old.

Today, all we need is electricity; our cell phones will do the rest of the thinking for us.  But what type of “thinking” do these devices do?  Do phones have emotions?  Can they be compassionate?  Will these devices reinforce our social norms; mores; manners?  Will people equipped with these devices have the knowledge to even know the difference?

Ah yes, there’s that word “know”.  I asked my phone – it had the answer, of course:

verb.  1. Be aware of through observation, inquiry, or information

OK, seems pretty matter-of-fact.  But how does modern technology impact our ability to know?  Is technology enhancing or diminishing our inquiry?  Our observation?  Or just pouring out information?

I think we know that knowledge has value, don’t we?

An investment in knowledge pays the best dividends. 

Benjamin Franklin

But is knowledge “it”?  Is that all we need to know?  Is that the mission of the Class of 2029 – to know they need to gain knowledge?  Or, do they only need to know that cell phones run on electricity?  And their cell phones already “know” everything?

Could there be more?

Imagination is stronger than knowledge.  Dreams are more powerful than facts.  Hope always triumphs over experience. 

Robert Fulghum

Hmmm…  I’m aware through observation and inquiry that at my grandson’s kindergarten graduation one of the teachers cited excerpts from Robert Fulghum, too:

All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten ©

All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned in kindergarten.  Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate-school mountain, but there in the sandpile at Sunday School. These are the things I learned:

Share everything.  Play fair.  Don’t hit people.  Put things back where you found them.  Clean up your own mess.  Don’t take things that aren’t yours.  Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody.  Wash your hands before you eat.  Flush.

Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.  Live a balanced life – learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.  Take a nap every afternoon

When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands, and stick together.  Be aware of wonder.

Think what a better world it would be if all – the whole world – had cookies and milk about three o’clock every afternoon and then lay down with our blankies for a nap.  Or if all governments had a basic policy to always put thing back where they found them and to clean up their own mess.

And it is still true, no matter how old you are – when you go out into the world, it is best to hold hands and stick together.

Siri – give that an Amen!

GAP

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Dads’ day…

My son might take my 6 year old grandson golfing this Sunday.  They go to the practice range often.  It’s the roots of a lifelong, father-son bonding; just like my Dad and I, along with my son for a few years, enjoyed.

Hopefully, the short amount of time I spent on the golf course with my son left him with core values of courtesy, camaraderie, and the pursuit of personal best.  Of course, other things are sometimes learned on the golf course:

Golfer Tommy Bolt is known for his sweet swing and foul temper.  While giving a clinic to a group of amateurs, Bolt tried to show his softer side by involving his 14-year old son in the lesson.  “Show the nice folks what I taught you”, said Bolt.  His son obediently took a 9-iron, cursed, and hurled it into the sky. 

Thomas Roswell

They don’t have to take us golfing to influence our lives, true?  Dads can simply set the example; doing – not just telling; instilling core values like pride in our work; ethics; honesty; quiet resolve to make a better life for our families.  That’s the paternal role my other son portrays.

Sunday, he might encourage his daughter (who has entered the workforce fulltime) to have a good day.  He might reinforce her customer service skills; how to address questionably ethical situations; address workplace safety.  Sunday, and every day, he is her Dad.

And we are all so proud when our children demonstrate the skill of common sense we hope we have taught them:

Kid wisdom:

When your Dad is mad at you and asks you, “Do I look stupid?”  Don’t answer him. 

Michael

Sometimes our Dads employ “tough-love”.  The worst years of my life occurred when I was trying such a tough-love approach.  I wasn’t skilled at it; didn’t like the outcome; and today would caution any young father to be wary of such an approach.  Whoever came up with the idea of tough-love was probably not a Dad.

But the good news is our children are resilient.  (Did they get that from us?)  If we are tough with them from time-to-time, it doesn’t have to be permanent, as offered by our Unknown Sage:

A flustered father, stressed out from his day at work, was unsuccessfully texting his kids to come in for dinner.  Finally, he walks out on his porch and yells for his kids to come in.

At that point one youngster turns to his brother and asks, “I can’t remember, which one am I – Jesus Christ or God Dammit?”

Ah yes – texting; technology; stress – challenges all for fathers to be good fathers Sunday.  But I suppose no more challenging that the technology and stress of their time for our fathers; grandfathers; and great grandfathers.  Nonetheless, Dads today take great pride in continuing to provide a home for their families, even if the definition of “home” has evolved:

Home, nowadays, is a place where part of the family waits ‘til the rest of the family brings the car back. 

Earl Wilson

So, here’s to our Dads; Sunday’s time with them; or Sunday’s phone conversation with them; or Sunday’s memories of them.  And here’s to step-fathers and father-figures that share that special kind of unconditional love with children who don’t have their biological father in their life.  May we continue to pass on the traditions of love we received from our fathers, grandfathers, and father figures.

Dads all.

GAP

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April 20, 1999 never forgotten…

Eighteen years ago today, my hometown experienced the terror that two teenagers, feeling a sense of hopelessness, can bring to their high school, their community and our nation.  It was considered a rare event back then – unfortunately, it has become increasingly more common today.

Life is hard and can often seem hopeless for all too many youths in their teens and twenty’s.   If you have a son or daughter; grandchildren; nieces or nephews; or neighborhood kids; hug them today.

Tell them today that you love them and will support them as they make their way in the world to adulthood and self-sufficiency.  And if they are struggling to make ends meet – give them a few bucks.  Help them find a job.  Today, help them feel they belong.

Let’s reverse our society’s violence.  Let’s use our power of self confidence to increase the sunlight for those heading towards darkness:

It takes the sun to create a shadow – accept that the dark and the light live side by side in all of us. 

Chellie Campbell

It’s not just my home town of Littleton – Today, we are all Columbine:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i9Seqhcq23M

May you feel peace – and share the power of peace with others – today, and everyday!

GAP

Day by day…

If I do the math 44 years is the equivalent of 16,060 days.  This coming Sunday marks 44 years; 16,060 days.  A significant amount of time to be with one’s significant other, true?

In reality it’s been significantly more than 16,060 days when I think about our engagement, plus  the many days we dated in high school. And every day for over 16,060 days – more than 44 years – I have enjoyed being married to my high school sweetheart.  Happy Anniversary Debbie!

Many of you are in a long-lasting relationship; many have been married longer than we.  A Mile High Salute!  Maybe my relationship thrived because I was a “road warrior” for several years?  As one of my colleagues once said:

The secret to a long marriage is a husband that travels. 

Lisa Kwiecien

As you know, I write about my wife frequently; not necessarily daily; but frequently.  Like any couple, we have our good days and our not-so-good days.  Like many couples, we’ve also had some of those relationship-testing; foundation-rattling; we’re-not-going-to-make-it; kind of days.   When those days have occurred we followed James P. Owen’s advice:

When you’re riding through hell… keep riding.

Any meaningful journey is like that, don’t you think?  Even one of America’s most famous sweethearts offered all of us her guidance on life’s journey:

Pain nourishes courage.  You can’t be brave if you’ve only had wonderful things happen to you. 

Mary Tyler Moore

Over our 16,000+ days, we have had more than our share of wonderful things happen; all driven by love.  In fact, 44 years ago this month the #1 song on the Billboard Hot 100 was “Love Train” by the O’Jays.  According to Wikipedia:

The word ‘train’ comes from the Old French trahiner, from the Latin trahere meaning pull, or draw.

I have been a passenger on that love train as my wife has pulled us along for 44 years!  Of course, I’ve tried to pay attention to the little things that make a difference day by day; lighten her load a bit; smooth the tracks.  Rob Gilbert made a list:

How to have a Winning Day:

  1. You have to listen more than you talk…
  2. You have to smile more than you frown…
  3. You have to be fascinated more than you’re frustrated…
  4. You have to believe in yourself more than you doubt yourself.
  5. You have to work more than you whine.
  6. You have to do more than you don’t.

I have also paid attention to my role, responsibilities and boundaries:

Men ordering custom colors must first bring in a note from their wife. 

Guiry Paint Store

It’s OK; she writes the notes; I run the errands; we make a great team.  And on those occasional occasions where disagreement looms, we heed Harlan Miller’s advice:

Often the difference between a successful marriage and a mediocre one consists of leaving three or four things a day unsaid.

16,060 days and our love train is still rolling strong.  No matter our future course; no matter the challenges we will face; the trails that will test us; not even the weather we may encounter; our love train will continue – pulled along by my significant other – regardless of whether the wind is boosting us from behind our back or resisting us as it blows hard in our face.

Etheridge Knight’s words will continue to guide us:

Love is a rock against the wind.

Happy 44th Anniversary Dear.  You’re my rock and I love you.

GAP

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Luv rules…

Posted Feb 8 2017 by in True North with 2 Comments

Valentine’s Day is on its way – there’s still time to make special arrangements for that special person in our life.

OK, OK – so I can’t take credit for creating this awesome display of love for my love.  That was someone else’s awesome display of their love for their love.  But I can take “observation credit” for stopping along the roadside while driving through this western Illinois farming community to take the picture, can’t I?  I think my wife will give me credit for a little kind-hearted, photo-plagiarism because I know she knows:

Love rules without rules

Italian Proverb

Who says men are oblivious and have no powers of observation?  OK – so with the billboard approach there were no subtleties.  But observing his demonstration of love reminds us all that for next Tuesday, no assumptions; no taking her for granted; no obliviousness; no subtleties are allowed.  On Valentine’s Day, we must shout our love for our love from the top of the mountains!  Of course, we hope our women do the same for the men in their lives:

You know “That Look” women get when they want sex?  Me neither. 

Steve Martin

Next Tuesday may be a special day in my marriage, but our relationship over the years has taken constant care (and patience).  Thankfully, my wife has patience:

Patience strengthens the spirit,

sweetens the temper,

stifles anger,

extinguishes envy,

subdues pride,

bridles the tongue,

restrains the hand,

and tramples upon temptation. 

George Horne

It’s easier to be patient with the little things I suppose.   But when times get tough, the most convenient person to argue with, vent to, and take our frustrations out on is often our partner, true?  Life seems to move so fast; people seem to be so stressed; the media inundates us with so many sensationalized issues.

I don’t know; are meaningful, loving partnerships easier or harder to find these days?  With everything racing at a break-neck pace, who’s responsible for maintaining a healthy, loving, long-lasting relationship?  Well, here’s a view from Wyatt Webb:

You are 100 percent responsible for 50 percent of any relationship.

Carrying more than ½ the load you say?  Yep – you and my wife, too.

Thankfully, my wife and I are still in love after all of these years.  We will do something quiet this Valentine’s Day; we enjoy our quiet time together – always have.  We’re blessed with sharing many common interests, so spending time together and “decompressing” from our fast-paced life is a nice retreat.

Like you, our conversations will span a variety of topics; children; friends; happy memories; love.  Of course, when we’re together we will also synchronize our calendars; debate upcoming projects; disagree on priorities; discuss business; and almost always review our finances.  Yuck!  Necessary I suppose, but certainly not very romantic.

Yet this Valentine’s Day I will be reminded:

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

Mignon McLaughlin

So here’s to February 14th – Valentine’s Day.  May you enjoy it with someone special in your life.  If you’re lucky enough to be in love, may you cherish your quiet time together; sharing common interests; being patient with life’s challenges; relishing the restorative results of romance.

And if you’re with someone but you’re not yet sure if he or she is “the one”, don’t worry – trust your gut feeling:

Love is not finding someone you can live with; it’s finding someone you cannot live without. 

Rafael Ortiz

Love rules without rules on Valentine’s Day – and every day.

GAP

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Happiness is…

Happy Thanksgiving!  Feliz Navidad!  Chag Chanukah sameach!  Heri za Kwanzaa!  Happy New Year!  Wow!  This time of year happiness seems to surround us all, true?  Curious – How happy are you these days?

This time of year can be quite challenging for many of us:

In fact, many people experience the holidays as a very stressful time of year with family obligations and social commitments coupled with financial pressure. What’s more, it’s a colder and darker time of the year, especially in the North East, which can easily put a damper on many people’s mood. Indeed, for some, SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) can seriously intensify the holiday blues. 

Clifford N. Lazarus PH.D.

SAD; financial pressures; holiday shopping; social obligations; makes things tough enough; add in the usual year-end crunch at work and it’s no wonder so many of us feel the holiday blues during the fourth quarter.  Nonetheless, year-end and the holiday season are upon us so it begs the question; what do we do about it?

Our favorite Unknown Sage offers us this counsel:

Now and then it’s good to pause in our pursuit of happiness and just be happy.

Pausing in our pursuit of happiness requires a bit of mental toughness, don’t you agree?  We have to stop that inner voice telling us, “You’re going to be happy this season God Dammit, even if it kills you!”  Not to mention how many of us feel about our jobs going into December.

In Dr. Travis Bradberry’s post, “Powerful Ways to Create Your Own Happiness” he cites a 2013 Gallup study that found out of 180 million people only 13% considered ourselves to be “happily engaged at work”.  13%!  Check out his full post https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/powerful-ways-create-your-own-happiness-dr-travis-bradberry

Life circumstances have little to do with happiness because much happiness is under your control – the products of your habits and your outlook on life.  Happiness is synthetic – you either create it, or you don’t. 

Dr. Travis Bradberry

Truth be told; I never thought about “synthetic happiness”.  I guess it’s a convenient crutch to blame life’s circumstances.  I do however believe that we each have daily control.  Every day when we wake up, we have the power to make a choice on how we will face that day.  No, we can’t control the incoming:

I try to take one day at a time, but sometimes several days attack me at once. 

Ashleigh Brilliant

But we do have control over how we choose to deal with it.  I guess that was the point of Doc Brad’s post.  He goes on in his column to offer us a checklist on how emotionally intelligent people synthesize their own happiness:

They don’t obsess over things they can’t control.

They choose their battles wisely.

They get enough sleep.

They heed their moral compass.

They exercise during the week.

They have a growth mindset.

They clear the clutter.

They lend a hand.

They let their strengths flow.

They believe the best is yet to come.

How do you check out on Doc Brad’s checklist?  At least he offers us a good starting point to regain control over our happiness.  Come sundown; I guess we just have to, “Believe the best is yet to come.”  And during our holiday season, believing and happiness are close cousins – I believe.

So here’s to a little holiday cheer for us all!  And while we’re baking cookies and mixing egg nog (pass the Southern Comfort please), let’s remember to synthesize a bit of happiness in each and every day, too.

GAP

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Common enemies…

Posted Dec 7 2016 by in True North with 0 Comments

“OK Pokorn”, you might be thinking… “how will you correlate that title with peace and positivity?”  Well, there is actually great power found in emotional negativity that can be harnessed for the greater good.  And it is this appeal to the greater good that we should remember today and every day.  Today is Pearl Harbor Day.

On this date, December 7, 1941, an event occurred that summoned a powerful, driving force for the greater good– Pearl Harbor.  From a factual standpoint according to Wikipedia:

In total, 2,403 Americans died and 1,178 were wounded.

Nothing remarkable in the annuls of bloody combat, true?  But the highly-charged political discourse that followed epitomized by President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “Infamy Speech” (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infamy_Speech ) united our country against a common enemy.

Moving on to the Oxford Dictionary:  “Post-truth” is Oxford Dictionaries’ Word of the Year for 2016:

Post-truth adjective

Relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.

The recognition goes on:

‘It’s not surprising that our choice reflects a year dominated by highly-charged political and social discourse’, says Casper Grathwohl, President of Oxford Dictionaries. ‘Fueled by the rise of social media as a news source and a growing distrust of facts offered up by the establishment, post-truth as a concept has been finding its linguistic footing for some time.’

“…Fueled by social media and a growing distrust of facts…”  Negative emotions can be a powerful, driving force.  But a force for good?  We can only hope; right President-Elect Trump?

We witnessed this kind of power in the sporting world, too.  The 2016 Chicago Cubs finally beat their common enemies – the 108 year World Series drought; the “Curse of the Billy Goat”; Steve Bartman (not to mention the Cleveland Indians).

In the business world we have seen evidence of power when uniting against common enemies.  Steve Jobs seemingly crusaded to be taken seriously – until Apple finally dominated personal, technology devices.  The common enemy of marketplace disrespect drove Apple to great heights:

Imagination is stronger than knowledge.

Dreams are more powerful than facts.

Hope always triumphs over experience. 

Robert Fulghum

We’ve witnessed Oracle Corporation’s leader, Larry Ellison and his passion to conquer everything and everyone – business; technology; sailboat racing – everything!

Jonathan Whistman, author of The Sales Boss ©, speaks specifically to the ways sales leaders can harness the power of the common enemy, creating a common language in pursuit of a common cause (see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3C5NBCIa1nM ).

The Salvation Army started in 1865 in London and The American Red Cross inspired from the carnage of our Civil War, formerly launched in 1881 in Washington D.C.  These powerful organizations are also untied against common enemies – the needy; the sinful; the destitute; the addicted; the hungry; the homeless.  There are many common enemies that give rise to great power for the common good:

In every community, there is work to be done.

In every nation, there are wounds to heal.

In every heart, there is the power to do it.

Marianne Williamson

So yes – common enemies, and the personal, emotional reactions they stimulate, can and do harness the necessary power for the greater good.

Here’s to Pearly Harbor Day and all the power it generated to propel our country forward in the face of common enemies.  How will we propel America and our fellow Americans, forward this December season in the face of our many common enemies?  In our hearts, we have the power to do it!

GAP

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Still Giving Thanks…

We are in the season of thankfulness.  Not that we should wait during the rest of the year to say, “Thank you”, but certainly November and December remind us of our blessings, don’t you agree?  So before going any further – permit me to say, “Thank you”!

Thankfully, I am blessed with family, friends, clients and colleagues who enrich my life beyond count.  Thankfully, I have readers who accept my periodic posts and reciprocate with responses of appreciation towards my little ditties.

Let me thank Chris Corcoran.  Because he knew how much it would mean to me, Chris bought me the book Softwar: An Intimate Portrait of Larry Ellison and Oracle ©.  Thankfully, I was fortunate enough to work for Oracle back in the day that the majority of this book was depicted.  And wouldn’t you know it?  My career is circling back as I prepare to rejoin Oracle Corporation twenty five years later.

Thankfully, I have been fortunate enough to work for some of the “all time” business leaders, including Josh Weston of ADP; Larry Ellison of Oracle; and Dave Duffield of Integral Systems (which preceded PeopleSoft and now Workday).  Each unique in their style; all the same in their impact.

John McCall is a reader, too.  He generously sent me a very special email:

Gary, about a year ago I tried to compile quotes from one of the most wise men in American history. I enjoy your site and emails and I hope these quotes (or most of them anyway) you will find to be as hilarious, spot on and useful as I do. I hope you are well.

John attached a compilation of Benjamin Franklin quotes for my enjoyment.  Thank you John!

So ready or not, its Thanksgiving week!  Hard to believe it’s here already isn’t it?  I guess time flies when we’re heads down, working during these challenging times.

With the recent snow in Denver we are reminded winter is upon us.  No worries, though.  With the kindness I receive from Chris, John, and all those around me, I will stay warm:

A kind word warms for three winters. 

Chinese Proverb

Thankfully, many are optimistic that we will have a successful “Black Friday”; “Small Business Saturday”; and “Cyber Monday”.  Thankfully, we have retailers who are able to brave the “Advertise & Hope” approach to sales.  That’s why I chose a Business-to-Business sales profession where with a semblance of control, we can go out and “sell somebody something” vs. waiting and hoping.

Thankfully, we have smart people to put things in proper perspective.  You see, I’m not the smartest guy in the room.  But I am coachable; listen well; and have an excellent memory.  The next best thing to being a genius is to mingle with those who are:

Everything that can be counted does not necessarily count;

everything that counts cannot necessarily be counted. 

Albert Einstein

I can’t count all that I am thankful for; nor all of the times I have wanted to thank someone for their kindness or courtesy.  But I am thankful for sure.

Thankfully we will spend time with family, friends, food, and fun with a little football during the Thanksgiving holiday.  We will have a few quiet moments to reflect on all we have to be thankful for, too.

Thankfully, I have readers who read my posts and offer me occasional replies of encouragement.  And thankfully we have the opportunity to experience the peace and power of a positive perspective this holiday season.

GAP

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Today’s outlook…

Will today be fair and mostly sunny?  Or, are we dreading that test or that big presentation that we know we are not properly prepared for?  Are we Olympians ready to run our personal best today?  Is today’s outlook one of accomplishment or disappointment?

Depending on the context, “outlook” has a variety of meanings for us, true?  For those of you on an airplane your pilot might have this outlook:

Weather at our destination is 50 degrees with broken clouds; but they’ll try to have them fixed before we arrive. 

Unknown Sage

Some might be girding for a disagreement with our spouse during breakfast and if we’re of European descent we may have a different outlook:

Old Scottish Prayer

O Lord, grant that we may always be right, for Thou knowest we will never change our minds.

Some of us fear the day; some are excited to see what adventures lie ahead.  Some are working out.  Some will sleep in.  Some will simply and mindlessly go about our routine robotically.  How will you face the day?  And what outlook will you bring for yourself and share with the others around you?

On the “for our self” side, I think Guy R. Ratti offers stellar advice:

I carry a picture of myself as a child (about six years old) to remind me of two things:

  1. To remember to always look at the world as a child does, with wonder and excitement of what I can become.
  2. To remember to forgive and love myself just as would that innocent child in the picture. Too many grown-ups live their lives feeling guilty over mistakes made or lose time blaming themselves for things that could have been. I remember what it is like to be a child and know that in many ways I am not much different from that boy in the picture

When I wrote this little ditty, this passage stimulated me to go through my family album and find that childhood picture.  And that picture stimulated my memory of a world filled with wonder and excitement.  The love I felt from my family; the carefree feeling each new day brought; the adventure of exploring the neighborhood.  That child-like outlook – let’s all regain that peaceful feeling today, deal?

OK, not everyone had a magnificent childhood.  But I bet you can remember a friend, family member, teacher, preacher, coach, or mentor that encouraged you to be all that is possible to be.  I bet you have a memory of a past, pleasant time that today, would be a good day to dust off that memory and use it to reset your outlook.

For those around us, they might appreciate the effort too:

You will be happier if you will give people a bit of your heart rather than a piece of your mind. 

Unknown Sage

We’ve all been there; life beats on us until we capitulate and our attitudes give-in to the “dark side”.  Stress and anger replace innocence and optimism.  We become the recipients (or worse, the originators) of the sentiment seen by Captain Bligh in the movie Mutiny on the Bounty:

The beatings will continue until morale improves.

Well, it doesn’t have to be that way.  Our day can be whatever we chose to make of it.  Today’s outlook is under our command – and from the movie Midway we might heed the line from Robert Mitchum’s role:

When you’re in command – command!

So what will you command your outlook to be today?

GAP

Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my past posts too: www.TheQuoteGuys.com