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Looking For Answers In Our Lives, I Wanted To Share This With You

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A friend is struggling right now. Their world isnít ending but one of my grandmaís always said ďNo problem is a small problem if itís your problem.Ē They wrote me a long letter and half way through I was reminded of something I havenít read in ages, the Desiderata. Truth be known, I should read it every morning. Its chock full of precise wisdom and advice and if I choose to make it my goal, Iíll be the happiest person alive.

Because I love you I thought Iíd share it with you

ďGo placidly amid the noise and the haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible, without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even to the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexatious to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain or bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs,
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals,
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love,
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life,
keep peace in your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful. Strive to be happyĒ

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SPARKLISE 12/15/2011 7:17AM

    I've never heard of this but it sounds really deep.
Thank you for sharing it.
Lots of truths we need to hear-I liked the "do not feign affection" as we near the Christmas season.
emoticon emoticon

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NASFKAB 12/15/2011 12:34AM


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CMBELISLE 12/14/2011 10:14AM

    Thank you! I'm going to keep a copy.

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MKPRINCESS007 12/13/2011 10:24PM

    But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

So much speaks to me here, but these two lines jumped off the page for me. It is so true. We create so much in our minds, much more than the reality.

Thanks for loving us and sharing this with us!


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MORTICIAADDAMS 12/13/2011 10:11PM

    Great refresher. I hadn't read it in a long time.

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DARE2LIVE2011 12/13/2011 5:24PM

    Keeping this one in my favorites! Thanks for the great reminder.

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LYNMEINDERS 12/13/2011 4:04PM

    So so true...thankyou

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HDHAWK 12/13/2011 12:32PM

    Thanks for sharing. Very true.

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LINDAJ0621 12/13/2011 11:09AM

    I had forgotten about this too...I am printing this out as a reminder! Thank you!!!

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TRISTAROSE 12/13/2011 10:47AM

    Thanks for sharing this John!


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MUSTANG_SALLY2 12/13/2011 9:56AM

    What a great start to my day. I need to print it out! Thank you.


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NEEDTOLOSE100LB 12/13/2011 9:51AM

    Thank you for sharing, John. I think each one of us could benefit from reading these words each day and reaffirming our place in this vast universe.

Have a happy day!


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WORKINGSTIFF 12/13/2011 9:50AM

    Being a child of the 60's, I've seen this on posters and heard it in song for many many years...

Thank you for this. I'm going to copy it and print it and hang it nearby for a constant reminder.

Have a great day!


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You Cant Argue With This Piece of Logic

Monday, December 12, 2011

When I started my consulting service some ten years ago I made a commitment to devote a portion of my business to helping people who otherwise couldnít afford my services. Mostly, Iíll write or revise resumes for college students when they get ready to enter the job market. Before you deem to terribly noble writing a resume is something that takes me about thirty five minutes, an hour if I have to start from scratch. When you think about it there are things you do in your job that are second nature and donít always require a massive amount of effort to achieve.

But I digress.

Last week I polished up a resume for a young man whoíll be graduating from college next week. We sat down at Starbucks and I went over the changes Iíd made. He thanked me and asked me what he owed me. I looked him square in the eye and told him to work hard, follow his dreams, pay the price and become a success however he defined success. One day as I sat on the front porch in my rocker I would know I helped someone reached their goals.

He looked at the resume for a moment, then looked at me and said ďWell, how about I give you twenty bucks instead.Ē

I laughed harder than I have laughed in a while. His logic was hard to argue with I think he is already on his way!!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANDREWS_MOM 12/13/2011 8:50AM

Waaaay too funny! Thanks for sharing & staring my day w/ a smile! emoticon

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NASFKAB 12/13/2011 12:06AM

  great fun good laugh

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GEEMAWEST 12/12/2011 10:18PM

    That's funny!! You have to have a good sense of humor to make it in today's world. (I assume he was kidding).

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LYNMEINDERS 12/12/2011 9:00PM

    Awesome....Had a laugh myself.....

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TRULYVISIBLE 12/12/2011 3:18PM

  He couldn't express how much he appreciated what you did and offered the $20.00. I think that was very nice of him.

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CMBELISLE 12/12/2011 3:14PM

    LOL - love it!

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ANATASHIKI 12/12/2011 2:07PM

    emoticon next time try to ask them solve the world crisis and bring peace in the world emoticon

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GETFIT2LIVE 12/12/2011 11:52AM

    emoticon Thanks for the chuckle to start my day--yes, he is on his way!

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SHERRYJVP 12/12/2011 11:20AM

    lol that's hysterical. I thinking paying the money is easier that the road you wished upon him...but I agree...if he is smart enought to know that already, then he will succeed. So funny.

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GOOSIEMOON 12/12/2011 9:46AM

    Money does make the world go 'round!


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MUSTANG_SALLY2 12/12/2011 9:13AM

    LOL I do believe he is well on his way!

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Unsung Heroes

Thursday, December 08, 2011

When you own the business you work Christmas Eve, especially when you are a ďmom and pop.Ē Itís not really fair to your twenty somethingís. Even though the sign screams ďNo VacancyĒ there is always the random stranger who came home from college at the last moment to surprise the family on Christmas morning or the traveler who ran out of steam half way through their journey. Itís hard to say no. But where would you put them, on the roof? Besides, this business is yours. Maybe it only has ten rooms and there isnít a buffet breakfast served in the morning, but every inch of it is yours. You arenít large enough to give a Christmas bonus and you barely have enough money to pay for your own benefits so you let them have Christmas Eve and Christmas day off with pay. You do it, your dad did it and his dad before him did it. Itís just the way things are. Itís your obligation.

So you sit on the same stool as those who came before you and you work through a Sudoku book. At midnight youíll turn off the lights, lock the door and ease yourself on to the cot in your office. All your guests are tucked in; everyone has soap and towels for the morning. ďMerry Christmas to all and to all a good nightÖĒ

The headlights blind you for a second as they glance off the wet window pane. A kid gets out of the car. You are half way to the front door mouthing ďno room available.Ē His shoulders slump a bit, he stomps the rain off of him and asks if you have a cup of water. Itís for his wife. They are headed home to see his mom and she canít go much further without a break. Sheís tired and aches all over. She wanted to stretch her legs a bit and maybe get something to drink. By the way, you donít happen to have a room do you. Heíll pay double if you could see your way clear.

This is the part you hate. As you fill a Styrofoam cup with water you politely but firmly tell him no, you sure donít. As you ease him towards the door you watch his wife stretch her back and then lean against the car. You mutter a profanity under your breath and tell him to bring her inside for a bit. Sheís pale, tired and you think of your wife and two daughters andÖÖÖÖ The cot in the back is not much. It sags in the middle and could use more than a heavy dose of Febreeze. There is a look of relief in her eyes as she lies down. Her husband sits next to her and you can hear them talking through the curtain.

The baby is born around 2:30 that morning. Mrs. Trotter in room 7 calls the front desk to complain about the racket and the flashing lights when the EMTís arrive. A few other curious guests poke their heads through the door and one cracks wise; ďThis is just like the first Christmas.Ē You sigh and put on a pot of coffee. Itís going to be a long day.

Unsung heroes are unsung for a reason. They are never on page one, they never receive an achievement award, they are largely forgotten. Amidst the trophies and mounds of recognition they become the people who make our successes possible.

We rarely know they are there and they never understand what the big deal is anyway.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GIRANIMAL 12/12/2011 8:59PM

    Beautifully written, my friend!

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MYOWNHERO 12/10/2011 9:07AM

    You just gave me chills. Seriously.

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CARTOONB 12/9/2011 11:44PM


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NASFKAB 12/9/2011 8:24AM


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CLOVER2 12/8/2011 3:35PM

    A wonderful reminder, wow.
emoticon emoticon

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LYNMEINDERS 12/8/2011 3:18PM

    Briliant blog John....
So so true as well....

Its nice to fade into the =background...

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HDHAWK 12/8/2011 12:41PM

    I have some in my own family. This is the first year in the last 4 that I'll have my hubby home on Christmas (firefighter), but my son in law has to work (state patrol officer), and my daughter has the day off (nurse). They all have crazy schedules but we just work around them. It doesn't matter what day we celebrate as long as we get to spend time together.

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GOOFIERNU 12/8/2011 11:08AM


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BLACKROSE_222 12/8/2011 10:24AM

    What a reminder. Thanks again.

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PGNBRI 12/8/2011 10:18AM


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    There is one born every day. I've known hundreds of them and they make the world a better place to live in.

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EUPHRATES 12/8/2011 8:50AM


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Wondering What It Takes: A Reflection

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

I used to wonder how they did it. Those guys in the tailored suites and ladies in little black dresses standing at the buffet table laughing, talking and grazing on food that isnít even in the remote vicinity of being healthy. I used to think it was in their genes. They were predisposed to being thin and there was a huge hormone floating inside their bodies that gobbled up anything that appeared to be fattening. They were lucky I was not. They were favored, I was not.

So I studied them. I studied them at length and I came to realize that they possessed one absolute quality I did not. They had complete confidence in their ability to control their lives and their destiny. They knew who they were, and what they were capable of doing. They could stand relaxed and comfortable at the buffet table, scarf down a few fattening treats, and walk away to find interests more intriguing and exciting. I donít believe they are perfect. I simply believe thy tried and failed, tried again and never quit. The experience steeled them.

The external manifestation of health, wealth, success, go ahead and pick one thatís appropriate, is simply the total sum of you and I value ourselves, our lives and our place in this world. I sometimes think the scale doesnít move because deep down inside I donít want it to move. Fat and happy as they say, safe, not having to take risks or chances. Scary stuff.

Itís easier to be jealous, envious and spiteful of the folks who slide into size zero clothing without effort, itís much more difficult to emulate them. Itís hard to admit that even when we proclaim equality with all the world deep inside we donít really believe it. We just hope it happens.

Suppose we stopped dieting? Oh I know the mantra here is that we are not on a diet. Suppose we just walled off all our nasty, silly eating habits and stopped keeping track of them? Instead of tracking calories and water intake we kept track of most amazing things we did each day and that we shot for a high number rather than a low number? Suppose we quit competing with everyone to see how fast or far we could run, swim or cycle and instead focused on tracking activity as it concerned giving or helping others? We might not have time to eat and when we did weíd gravitate towards food that gave us the energy to be that evolving person we wanted to be. Not a lot of rules, just a concentration on locating our true self. Every night before we went to sleep weíd close our eyes and weigh our self worth and find its getting heavier!!!

Impossible you say. Really? Ask the size zero at the buffet table.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RR1_RR1 12/8/2011 12:57PM

    Really insightful! Enjoyed reading this.

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CIVIAV 12/8/2011 7:29AM

    By jove, I think he has something here!

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NASFKAB 12/8/2011 3:51AM


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CARTOONB 12/7/2011 10:30PM

    Hmmmm....dangerously liberal communistic thoughts there... emoticon

Let's try...

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HDHAWK 12/7/2011 6:03PM

    Yes! It's those of us who can't walk away when presented with a buffet table that will continue to struggle. I'm not sure why the sight of a buffet table or the like, makes me think it's the last meal I'll ever have.

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LYNMEINDERS 12/7/2011 3:53PM

    John.....thats just brilliant....totally superb and so totally worth our thinking about it .....

Joyce Meyer said once that people wanted what she had and wanted to be where she was....
her answer to them was....."Are you prepared to do what i had to do to get to where I am"....
I find that statement so tru and I see it coupleling with what you have written.....are we prapared to do what size 0 people do to stay/get size 0....

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    I'm far from a size zero but I don't compete with others nor compare myself to them. My goal is to be the best I can be and to do my best every day. I don't always achieve it but I'm the only one that can make it happen.

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BLACKROSE_222 12/7/2011 12:55PM

    Great thoughts today John. We have all been there, judging the same people - but we need to know that we are all individuals.

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MUSTANG_SALLY2 12/7/2011 10:17AM

    This sounds a bit like what Geneen Roth advocates in her books. I haven't been brave enough to try it but it intrigues me. Sometimes, I just want to be me and stop trying to be the other me, the thin one. Why does it have to be 2 different mes? Ugh.

Great blog.

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WORKINGSTIFF 12/7/2011 9:42AM

    Ok, playing devil's advocate here.

"They had complete confidence in their ability to control their lives and their destiny." I'd have to disagree somewhat. Nobody has control of their lives and destiny. My sister's husband walked out. Told her that he was "done." That wasn't the destiny she had in her mind. She was living the "'til death do you part" life. What she IS in control of is how she DEALS with the hand she's been dealt.

And therein lies the difference. We are not always in control of what happens to us, but rather, we are always in contol of how we handle what happens to us.

"They knew who they were, and what they were capable of doing." This I'll agree with. Knowing who you are, truly, is one of the hardest yet most important aspects of life. Many people are in absolute denial of who they are. Until we accept who we are, we cannot change. You can't change what you don't know.

None of us should be comparing ourselves to others. When I look at a skinny person, I think to myself, "Are they that way through healthy habits or unhealthy ones (like vomitting up all the food they eat)?" I have no way of knowing, thus, I'm not envious of them.

And maybe you are telling yourself something that you need to do for yourself. "Suppose we just walled off all our nasty, silly eating habits and stopped keeping track of them? Instead of tracking calories and water intake we kept track of most amazing things we did each day and that we shot for a high number rather than a low number?"

Maybe this is what you want to do deep down inside, but are afraid to step off that boat and see if you can walk on faith in your own ability, so to speak. It's scary. I know that firsthand. It gets tiresome "keeping track" all the time. Sometimes we just want to LIVE. Just BE.

Maybe you're telling yourself to give it a shot. Maybe?

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ANGEL636 12/7/2011 9:12AM

    Sounds easy enough, I will give it a try!
Have been working on the positive thinking & being thankful thing.
Thanks for that. emoticon

Comment edited on: 12/7/2011 9:15:16 AM

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The Gift of Time

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Itís early on a Saturday morning. Itís cold and in many ways Iíd rather be on the couch with a cup of green tea watching CNN. Iím not. I am dressed, showered and ready to go. You see this morning along with the local YMCA, Joan and I, as Owensboro Noon Optimists are hosting a Breakfast with Santa, complete with picture taking, face painting and sanitary wipes so Santaís new suit doesnít need cleaning later next week.

Some of you are golfing today, some shopping, some hiking or running. We are all doing what we need to do to stay active and healthy. My kids are grown, my granddaughter is two hundred miles away and I donít ďhaveĒ to do this. We want to. For many of the kids, this will be Christmas. There wonít be many presents under the tree for them. We figured, along with two moderately reluctant daughters, that we could give up a Saturday morning to make life happier for someone else. There isnít a price tag on a wide eyed smile and I also have decided there is no tangible present in this world that has the same value these raucous, happy kids have in my heart.

Iím not doing this to feel better about myself and the world around me. I am doing it because when the day is done, even if itís infinitesimal, Iíll be a much better person because I gave something I have to give and thatís my time.

So many of you do the same.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Sounds like a great cause. Every child should know the magic of Christmas.

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MARCYNA 12/5/2011 6:22AM

    No words, how awesome of you!!!!
Lots of love,

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LYNMEINDERS 12/3/2011 8:59PM

I truly trust that you and joan enjoyed your time today and I know God will bless you richly for it....
He always does....

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CARTOONB 12/3/2011 6:47PM

    Hope you had a great day and made some kids happy.

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RR1_RR1 12/3/2011 1:53PM

    Very nice of you to do that. Have a great day, thanks for the positive message emoticon

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SPEEDY143 12/3/2011 1:25PM

    What you do today is the reason for the season emoticon emoticon

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KATHRYN1955 12/3/2011 8:33AM

    Yes, that is the one thing that all of us are able to give, the gift of time. I always remember my grandmother, who even when she was in the nursing home, was always the one who everyone could depend on to lend a sympathetic ear. Although not able to be physically active, she had a wonderful empathetic manner.
It is a real gift to just be able to take the time to truly listen to another and to be totally present.
Have fun with Santa!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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HDHAWK 12/3/2011 8:21AM

    Good for you John! The kids will love it and the feeling you will get is priceless.

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TRISTAROSE 12/3/2011 8:21AM

    I wish I could go with you ... what a wonderful thing to do!


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CIVIAV 12/3/2011 8:10AM


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NASFKAB 12/3/2011 8:08AM


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WALKNLOVE 12/3/2011 7:29AM

    You give so much more of yourself than just time! Just sayin! You are a pretty special person! God has blessed both you & Joan & you are sharing those blessings! It truly is better to give than to receive!Have a wonderful time!

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JUSTLYLE 12/3/2011 7:19AM

    Good for you John and your B H, always great to do for others.

Skeeter emoticon

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