Friday, March 18, 2011
I am learning to trust myself, my feelings and my intuition. I am learning to be confident in the fact that more often than not I know what’s best for me. Call it intuition, or a gut level feeling, it is the knowledge that I have inside of me, everything I need to be a successful and well balanced person. That’s the easy part. The hard part is putting it into action. Being overweight creates a confidence crisis all its own and the longer I am overweight the deeper that crisis becomes until I begin to doubt my ability to do anything well. I have found myself on more than one wild goose chase. I have fallen prey to those “get thin quick schemes.” They are the ones that promise health happiness and a brand new car in about thirty days if you promise to do one simple thing --- never eat again. They also issue you a thirty percent discount coupon on a funeral. I have been mesmerized by the photos of men in Brooks Brothers suits gazing smugly at me as if to say “Uhm, John, this isn’t for you.” The list goes on.
Who do I listen to? Who has the wisdom and knowledge to know what’s best for me?
I do. I do if I take the time to listen to that voice inside of me that slowly and gently guides me towards health.
I do, when I put my life in focus and in balance and do the hard work up front it takes to get a good picture of myself, what motivates me and what brings me success. It happens when I believe I am worth all the effort, whether its successful at first or not, I am painting a very clear picture of who I am and where I am going.
I do, when I put on blinders and just for a little bit block out even the most well intentioned friends. I look deep into my soul and I see a clear vision or picture of myself and where I want to be and then I act on those positive urges that move me towards health. It means I may never run a marathon, participate in a triathlon or swim the English Channel. It means I probably won’t be invited to sit with the cool kids at their lunch table. So maybe I start my own lunch table and re-define cool.
I do, when I finally look in the mirror and acknowledge that I deserve everything I have ever dreamed of and that I have the intelligence and the ability to go out and get it. Not tomorrow, not next week but RIGHT NOW. It happens when I have enough faith in myself to claim my spot.
I am not advocating that you live on a mountain and refrain from taking any advice what so ever. I am suggesting that you and I decide when that advice is right for us. So many times we defer to people, not because we believe they are right but because we don’t have the faith and confidence in ourselves to say otherwise. It’s as if we look in an emotional mirror and see all the spots and warts we have and decide maybe someone else knows better.
As I learn and grow I am finding I know best. It doesn’t really matter what you think of me whether you love me or not. It matters what I think of me. You may argue with me that I am learning to lean to heavy on emotion and feeling and not enough upon intellect. I am happy you have come to that realization in your life and that you believe that is what works best for you.
In my top ten favorite things about Spark, right up there, close to the top, is the exhortation for me to be myself, travel my own path and find others who feel like me.
Folks like you!!!!
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Many of you inquired about how my back is feeling. I thought I'd give you a quick update.
It hurts, LOL
I have most of my range of motion back without uttering words not printable on a family web site. The pain has diminished. I have not taken any of the pain pills (I dont believe in narcotics) nor any of the muscle relaxants. (I had to work.) I have been getting by on Aleve. I ran into my doctor at the grocery this afternoon (It's a small town!!) She said it looked like I was better. No running for at least two weeks and no strength training for thirty days. She told me that as long as the pain is diminishing every day there should be no permanent damage.
It only bothers me when I am up and moving for any length of time.
Thank you all for your concern and your love
Thursday, March 17, 2011
About four times a year I get a chance to spend two days with a group of managers and their labor counterparts. The purpose of the meeting is exploring common values and makes their companies stronger in the marketplace. I really enjoy these occasions because I get an opportunity to lead a group of people who are steeped in tradition using nontraditional methods. On one occasion I split them into groups of five, gave them a huge piece of poster board and each a box of crayons and I asked them to draw an image of their perfect company. If they had to sell the idea to a group of investors what would it look like!! I bring this up because when I got out of bed early this morning I was still searching for a theme for my next encounter. (I have until Monday!!!) Then it hit me. We spend a lot of money and a lot of time in many ways accenting how different we are. We could probably spend a fraction of that resource exploring how much we have in common.
I don’t know about you, but every time I meet someone I do a real quick evaluation and comparison of myself to them. Are the more attractive than me? Are they smarter? Are they lighter or heavier? Usually I come up on the short end of the stick when I play this game. Being overweight for the past ten years has taught me that if I am not careful I can end up having an exclusive pity party for one. I can fixate on how different I am from other people, how much better they are, how much more together they are from me. The list goes on and on.
I don’t know about you, but when that happens to me the inevitable occurs. I feel like giving up coz after all, I’ll never be you. I know, I know, why would I want to be you? But I still play that game from time to time. You are brighter, more energetic and happier………. Just ask me!!! I examine myself and I come up lacking.
I don’t know about you, but I spend a good deal of time looking at other peoples weight loss tickers and exercise programs and beating myself over the head and making really silly and unfair comparisons between myself and you!!! It’s insane isn’t it, the amount of resource I invest in determining how different I am for you? Instead of really being sincerely joyful about my differences I usually find a way to turn them into yet another reason for me to get down on myself.
I don’t know about you but I believe we have a lot in common. You faithfully log in each day and you do the things that are necessary to create a healthy life style, for you!! You are a kind, caring and supportive person who would drop what they are doing to help a person in need by a supportive Spark Mail, Goodie or blog comment. You think nothing about sharing your time with other Sparkers. You know the successful journey is a slow one, and it’s full of hills and valleys, triumphs and failures. You never fail to provide a moment of joy or tenderness for someone else who is in need.
I don’t know about you, but I think it’s silly sometimes when I look the tremendous amount of love and encouragement I have the opportunity to provide for other people and instead I focus on how much more attractive or smarter they may be from me. I worry about our differences instead of learning form what we share in common. If you took our collective paths and drew them on a sheet of paper theyd resemble a three year old gone mad with a marker. They are so very different yet so very much the same.
I don’t know about you, but I think it’s time I concentrated more upon the things that you and I share in common rather than the very few differences that separate us. In the long run me and you will be much more successful.
Have a great Thursday and help me celebrate US!!!
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
I have spent the last eight Monday evenings with a very special group of people. Like me, each of them has devoted their lives to helping people in some form or fashion. Through the marvels of Go To Meeting. com I have been able to listen to and share with people in Europe, Canada, South America and the USA. Each of us took turns sharing our journies and our experiences. Rest assured that I was so proud to be able to share some of you and how you have impacted my life in such a postive and very loving way. We stayed together much longer last night then we had planned, close to three hours, and when I woke up this morning I wrote them each an email. As I wrote it, many of you, paraded through my mind and I felt the same warmth and love. Below is the text of that email. Many of you already know this is my mantra or creed, but to honor you today as well I thought I'd share with you.
I woke up this morning feeling somewhat bittersweet. It’s the kind of feeling I always have when a good friend comes to visit for an extended period: You know the day will come when they have to leave for home, you just never believe that day will come. How do you thank such an amazing group of people for sharing the most precious commodity they have, the gift of themselves?
The only way I believe I can honor each of you collectively is to tell you I believe that as I have gotten to know you that you embody my core values. With each person I coach I share the following thoughts with. Thank each of you for proving me right!!
1. “You are who you hang around with.” – Successful people find other people of the same mind set, heart and spirit to associate with. They are people who share the same values and thought. They are people who will challenge you to grow in ways you never dreamed you’d grow in.
2. “You are worth all the effort you put into yourself.” – All the blood sweat and tears, the angst, the indecision and every “icky-sticky” thing that goes along with our personal and spiritual development is worth the effort simply because you and I are were created by a loving God and we are the reflection and embodiment of that great love.
3. “You deserve to be successful.” – Never let anyone hold you back from reaching out to grab hold of what you want from your life. It may be difficult and at times you end up wondering just how you’d get there, but it is your right to be successful, regardless of what anyone else tells you. You are an amazing collection of thoughts, emotions and dreams. WE deserve to be exposed to the amazing wonder of creation that is you.
4. “You are what you believe you are.” – AA says “Fake it till you make it.” This is a variation on that theme. If I believe I am powerful, wonderful, loving………. You fill in the metaphor, then I indeed am.
During the course of our time together I have come to learn how much each of you is a perfect example of these principles. I have shared your journeys with people as a sign of hope that they too can be everything they want to be and so much more.
As feeble as it may seem this is my attempt to say thank you to each of you for the warmth, joy and love you have brought into my life.
Blessings to each of you
I hope your day is full of love and blessings my good Spark friends
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