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Posts tagged ‘appreciation’

It’s Just the Battery

“The torment of precautions often exceeds the dangers to be avoided. It is sometimes better to abandon one’s self to destiny.” – Napoleon Bonaparte

My scooter, aptly named the Buddy, has been sitting in the garage collecting dust, not starting for the past three summers. Each summer I kept charging the battery and it wouldn’t start. Thinking there was a bigger problem, l let it sit to deal with it later. Later never came.

“I love the feeling of the fresh air on my face and the wind blowing through my hair.” – Evel Knievel

“I love the feeling of the fresh air on my face and the wind blowing through my hair.” – Evel Knievel

Realizing summer is winding down, I picked up a new battery this week to see if it could be as simple as that. When I tried to start it, nothing but it sounded different than before. I tried again and again but no spark. Not wanting to drain the new battery, I tried the manual kick start. Two, three, four…and seven was the lucky kick. Tentative, the engine sputtered. After a moment, I revved the engine and a puff of black smoke came out, clearing three years of idleness out of the engine.

More confident that it wouldn’t kill, I headed down the street, gradually picking up speed. After a few times around the block, I went full throttle, wind in my face, claiming victory with a few hoots and hollers. The Buddy rides again! As I pulled her back in the garage, I turned her off and then on again just to be sure. Fired right up.

Sometimes, many times, we make a bigger deal of things and hesitate to try and take action, even one step. We put it off until later and later never comes, only regret for not trying. Our mind is a powerful creation – it can hold us back or when we align it with our heart, it can propel us into endeavors we’d never dare. We risk disappointment and dive in with great abandon.

Most of the time, it’s something as simple as replacing the battery, nothing more. Start changing some batteries, dive in and enjoy life.

Enlightenment

“Life is full of miracles disguised as the ordinary. Enlightenment is the ability to see them in the commonplace.” – Joan Chittister

Our perceptions, expectations, assumptions, reactions and actions are all in our control. The world changes when you stop being driven by others and take that wheel, driving fast and furious on the road of goodness, fullness and light. May your ordinary day be filled with enlightenment fueled by fire. Expect, be and do more.

“To be filled with the fire of life is to be grounded in goodness and freed by the spirit to do more than life would normally expect of us.” – Joan Chittister

New New Year’s Resolutions

Each year on this day, we focus on our shortcomings and with short-lived enthusiasm we set our new year’s resolutions, often the same ones we had last year. Lose weight. Join a gym. Exercise more. Find a new job. Travel. Spend less. Get organized.

With a renewed and sustained hope, here’s a new top 10 resolution list to consider:

  1. Let go of the past and be present to the blessings of each day, there are many
  2. Forgive yourself and others
  3. Lighten up and laugh
  4. Spend 10 minutes each morning setting the course for the day in quiet prayer and meditation, listening deeply
  5. Go above and beyond, no strings attached or expectation of “return on investment”
  6. Move your body, mind and spirit each day to improve your whole self
  7. Slow down and take life in instead of pass it by, single-task
  8. Love unconditionally, it’s the only way to truly love
  9. Deepen faith and discover your spirit that longs to be set free, it’s in there quietly asking to go out and play
  10. Enjoy each day with the innocence and delight of a child

Cast your light, let the light in and fill this year with wonder, gratitude and joy, one day at a time.

Tune In

“Abundance is not something we acquire. It is something we tune into.” – Wayne Dyer

The world and its demands will not slow down, so we must. To rest, reflect and reach in to our center to reveal a deep sense of gratitude. Scarcity thinking will never be satisfied because it can’t recognize the abundance that already is within and surrounding us. Instead of searching in far off lands or in the future when things are “perfect”, journey to what is now and discover your many treasures hiding in plain sight.

Be quiet, tune in and be grateful. And then move back out into the world and share that joy in abundance.

“Your mind will answer most questions if you learn to relax and wait for the answer.” – William S. Burroughs

“Your mind will answer most questions if you learn to relax and wait for the answer.” – William S. Burroughs

A Chip at a Time

“Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it.” – Michelangelo

It’s been particularly busy on many fronts the past few weeks and as I look at my calendar it’s not going to slow down any time soon. This is the same for so many of us.

We frivolously discard the gifts of each day waiting for the perfect time to start living, when it’s less busy or when this or that happens. The perfect time to start living is today. When we carve out our life each day no matter what’s going on, we discover joy and gratitude in the present.

On the eve of this holiday season as Thanksgiving approaches, amidst the hustle and hurry, anchor yourself in each moment, each day. Be the sculptor of your life, a chip at a time.

Here and Now

“So often we imagine that There is more full of gold than Here. It is the same with love and dreams and the work of our lives. We see the light everywhere but where we are, and chase after what we think we lack, only to find, humbly, it was with us all along.” – Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening

Not in a far off distance or someday soon, but Here and Now, we are surrounded by and filled with light. And when we remember each day to move our eyes and heart outward, and dare to cast our light, we invite others to shine their own special light. I am grateful for all the teachers in my life who cast their light amidst the full on darkness of shadows abound.

Half empty or half full? How about full to the top. Here and Now.

The Next 50

“There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age.” – Sophia Loren

I am taking a few days off to relax and enjoy the remaining hours of my 49th year. People asked what I am going to do and I told them that I am going to reflect on the past 50 years and think about what I am going to do with my next 50 years. Time moves quickly and slowly at the same time. We wish days away and then suddenly we’re 50 and feel like 30.

If we don’t pause along the way to witness what was and is right now, we miss the gifts and blessings that surround and embrace us. Regret can only be avoided if we remain present in each moment and aware of our power over our own lives and not distracted by the noise.

When we’re younger, we work on getting experience to get to the next thing, the next promotion, the next opportunity, the next trophy… Now I am more interested in experiencing each day giving my best regardless of recognition, learning new things, gaining insight, creating meaning, traveling lighter, letting worries go, trying to be much less serious and making good use of the experience I have earned by growing others.

Looking back, I don’t have the life I thought I would have but I have the life I was meant to and doing my best to live it well. And each day is overflowing with gratitude, grace, love and sprinkled with delight in the simple moments. Figure out what really matters right now and make each day its own end. So instead of the next 50 years, I think I’ll focus on the next 50 minutes.

True North

“When the solution is simple, God is answering.” – Albert Einstein

When I lose my way, may I always be brought home to a smile, a warm greeting and undivided attention. And when I go back out, may I carry that with me and offer the same that I have been given and restored by.

“Friendship is always a sweet responsibility, never an opportunity.” – Khalil Gibran

“Friendship is always a sweet responsibility, never an opportunity.” – Khalil Gibran

Boundless

“Being at ease with not knowing is crucial for answers to come to you.” – Eckhart Tolle

Every moment, each day is overflowing with promise when we give ourselves permission to accept that simple premise. Too often, we forego awesome people, beautiful places and the depth of the present as we opt to predetermine what lies ahead while clinging tightly to what has gone before.

I knew that this past week was going to have long hours and busy days. But instead of dreading it or wishing them away, I decided to move through each day open to what it may offer, no preconceived notions or conclusions. By letting it flow and unfold, I found a certain ease and renewed energy. I got to know others better, shared a bit about myself and listened intently. No judgment. No controlling. Just connecting with all that was present right in the moment.

I have surrendered too many days to assumptions, misperceptions, frustrations, drama and self-made complexity. If we start with the assumptions that people are good and our options are many, the world is transformed into endless possibilities. Naïve? Perhaps. Will we be disappointed? Absolutely. But living bound up in what has been or what may come steals this moment and the best in us and others.

We all just want to be called out to play, given permission to participate, invited to be seen and heard. Seize the boundless promises waiting to be fulfilled in your day, in your life.

First Sight Again

“We all walk around within the numbness of our habits and routines so often that we take the marvels of ordinary life for granted.” – Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening

Let yourself and all that you carry from the past, from yesterday and about the future, about tomorrow and leave it where it was or will be. Sink deeply into the moments of today. No judgment, measurement, comparison, heaviness, preconceived notions, worry or hesitation.

See as if for the very first time all that surrounds you. With a grateful heart, dancing spirit and open soul, be new and renewed by the beauty and simplicity of the ordinary.

Cast light, first sight.

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