Friday Review Love

FRIDAY REVIEW: LOVE

What does “love” really mean? How does it affect your decisions and life? Here are a few posts about love you may have missed. Click the links to read the full messages.

“Love is a fruit in season at all times and within reach of every hand.”

 

 

 

 

“Love the giver more than the gift.”

 

 

 

 

“At the end of our lives we will ask, ‘Did I Live? Did I Love? Did I Matter?’”

 

 

 

 

 

The Wonders We See Around Us

“We carry within us the wonders we see around us.”

—Sir Thomas Browne, 17th Century English Polymath

What does it mean to you to live an extraordinary life? Where do travel and adventure fit into your plans?

Years ago, I picked up a copy of 1000 Places to See Before you Die, and realized I was woefully behind making even a modest dent in the list.

Today’s quote points to the wonderland that is always available to each of us without ever getting into a car, train, boat, or plane.

EXERCISE:

Consider exploring your own inner wonders of creativity, love, spirit, faith, wisdom, kindness, and inner peace.
What other areas could you explore as you view other wonders in the world around you?

Use What Talent You Possess

“Use what talent you possess. The woods would be very silent if no birds sang except those that sang best.”

—Henry Van Dyke, 20th Century American educator

Image of Olympic Ice Skaters

Image from Flickr by Rach

We live in a hyper-competitive world. Simply look around and see the countless examples in your personal and professional worlds.

For our children, it begins quite early with school and sports and other extra-curricular activities. As we enter our early adult years, the competition to get in the best schools and desirable companies can be fierce. Then we have to climb the corporate ladder.

Perhaps the primary goal of our journey through life is to reveal our unique abilities and talents. Perhaps it is our job or purpose to express and share them with the world as we become better versions of ourselves.

EXERCISE:

What are your special talents? How can and will you develop them to your fullest capacity, and offer them generously within your communities with your voice both loud and proud?

Walking With the Trees

“Today I have grown taller from walking with the trees.”

—Karle Wilson Baker, 20th Century American Poet

Image of people walking through the forest

Image from Flickr by Dickson Phua

In the plant world, trees are among the most remarkable living creatures. In addition to being some of the largest and oldest living things, they have the ability to defy gravity. They reach toward the sky to absorb the sun’s energy, using it to make their own food through the process of photosynthesis.

I believe today’s quote points us to those tall, stand-out people within our personal or professional communities. These are the individuals we most admire and see as leaders who inspire us to stretch for our own greatest heights.

EXERCISE:

How and in what ways can you grow and stand even taller by walking with and associating with others who are stretching skyward toward the canopy of life?

Play the Tiles You Get

“Play the tiles you get.”

—Grandma Nelly

Image of a Scrabble tile holder

Image from Flickr by Joe King

In her book, 365 Days of Wonder, R.J. Palacio shares a charming story of her grandparents. Both avid Scrabble players, they played every day for more than 50 years.

Her grandfather, known as being the “intellectual,” almost always lost to his wife, who was primarily a homemaker, not the lawyer who graduated from Columbia.

Grandma Nelly was quite smart in her own right. She loved crossword puzzles. She had a miraculous ability to make the most of the tiles she was given rather than waiting to use the highest value tiles on double or triple word spaces. That was grandpa’s strategy.

EXERCISE:

In what areas of life are you waiting to get better tiles? What would be the value and benefit of learning to play the ones you currently have, and those you receive each day?

Friday Review Taking Action

FRIDAY REVIEW: Taking Action

How often, and how quickly, do you take action? Here are a few action-related posts you many have missed. Click the links to read the full messages.

 

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”

 

 

 

 

“Our doubts are traitors and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt.”

 

 

 

 

“The world will never discover a person who is hiding in the crowd.”

 

 

 

Dogs bark at those they do not know

“Dogs bark at those they do not know.”

—Samuel Daniel, 17th Century English Poet

Image of a barking dog

Image from Flickr by Toshihiro Gamo

Can you imagine people barking like dogs at people they don’t know?

In many ways, we do just that, except our bark is often silent, much like a dog whistle is to we humans.

This inner bark is often our judgement, criticism, and prejudice, showing that we are rarely open or receptive to another’s point of view, perspectives, or beliefs.

Take a look at the communities within your personal and professional worlds. What, overall, is the cost of the silent and not so silent “barking”?

Peace and a sense of unified community is hard to find, even if all signs point to things being fine on the surface.

EXERCISE:

Where would acknowledging and working on your own judgmental and critical tendencies support your cooperative and collaborative nature with those you’ve barked at in the past?

Six Honest Serving Men

“I had six honest serving men: (They taught me all I knew) Their names were Where and What and When and Why and How and Who.”

—Rudyard Kipling, 20th Century English Journalist & Poet

Begin a conversation with any of the Six Honest Serving Men from Kipling’s quote and you’re off to a great start in learning something new. You may even develop or nurture a new or existing relationship.

Powerful open-ended questions beginning with one of the Six Honest Serving Men open doors to new knowledge. They also demonstrate a genuine interest in others, which we all relish.

For today, I suggest you direct these probing and door-opening words toward yourself, to see what new worlds of discovery lie within.

EXERCISE:

Ask and answer some of your most important and pressing questions of the day. Then consider asking “What Else?” to see what you can learn by probing deeper than your surface answers.

This is no time for ease

“This is no time for ease and comfort. It is the time to dare and endure.”

—Sir Winston Churchill, Late Prime Minister of The United Kingdom

Image of Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill

Image from The Telegraph

In my opinion, Gary Oldman is a top Oscar candidate for his portrayal of Winston Churchill in the recent film, Darkest Hour.

Churchill was definitely the right leader at the right time, taking a powerful stand for the British people against Hitler and Nazi Germany.

Throughout the movie, many of Churchill’s close advisors encouraged him to engage in peace talks. He did not accept this advice, because he saw it as a blow to the dignity of the proud British people. Instead, he rallied Parliament and the country to stand proudly and powerfully against Hitler’s tyrannical quest to dominate all of Europe.

EXERCISE:

Where and on what personal or professional issue is it the time for you to “dare and endure”?

How will you find the courage and internal fortitude to enroll others within your communities to follow your lead?

We are inclined to think

“We are inclined to think that if we watch a football game or a baseball game, we have taken part in it.”

—John F. Kennedy, 35th President of the United States

Image of a crowd at a sporting event

Image from Flickr by Danny Molyneux

Are you a sports fan? How many hours a week do you watch sporting events on TV? How often do you go to games or events in person?

Without question, the energy and excitement around sporting events – football, baseball, the upcoming Olympics, even golf – can be off the charts. Many people experience the by-product bursts of adrenaline through our proximity to these spectacles.

What if you lived in Roman times and were among the spectators in the Colosseum, where the game involved life or death? Clearly you would not wish to be one of the people facing the lions!

EXERCISE:

Where in your personal or professional life are you sitting on the sidelines as a spectator, thinking that somehow, you are actually in the game?

Where is it time to suit up and get on the field to actually experience life’s contests yourself?