Thursday, February 23, 2017

Completion Is Not the End

Who doesn’t love completing a job, a project, a writing assignment, a series of treatments, a great novel with a darling of a heroine?

All good things must come to an end, perhaps.

However … remember this.

Now there is something to that. 

This post is just about complete in it's concept, and then in a few days or weeks you will read it.  But the end of my writing life is far into the distance. 

I’ll never reach the end of having something to say.  Many of these posts are complete, but they are not facing their end, for some still enjoy a shelf-life of continual reading by some somebody somewhere.  Amazing.

Here’s the main thing … every ending brings with it another open door through which we choose to enter.  As much as I love some of the past posts, my mind continually searches for the next good idea, for as surely as the sun will rise tomorrow, someone in this world needs a word of hope and encouragement, and perhaps I can be the one to give that word.

What have you recently completed?  Now, after a moment of rest and a few deep breaths, pick up your pen, turn on your computer, dust off the tools of your trade and go back to work. 

After all … Completion is a goal but we hope it's never the end. 

My great friend Rod retired a few years ago after a stellar career in academia at a popular university in San Diego.  Read what he wrote about that time in his life. 

“This is a step forward, 
not a stopping place!  
It’s a beginning, 
not an ending.”

One chapter ends … another begins.

And the beat goes on.

Words of Hope
Encouragement Inspiration
One Word at a Time

Thursday, February 16, 2017

It's Frightening to be Free

Freedom and fear of freedom.  What a conundrum.

We talk about freedom and being free and that is all good.  Very good in fact. 

But actually … sometimes, don’t we fear freedom?

Freedom means making our own choices
Walking our own path
Choosing who and what
and where and when and why
just because we are free.

And then … at the end of our freedom of choice what do we find?

We don’t have anyone 
to blame if things fall apart.

We can’t say …
“He made me do it.”
“She tricked me into this job, this investment, this relationship.”

Yes, it is frightening to be free. 

And so what? 

Freedom carries with it responsibility. 


Can we handle that?

Perhaps the question is not …
"What if I fail?"  That is fear-based.

Maybe we should look at it from … 
What if I succeed?  
What if my freedom brings me joy to the max?

What if I actually create my dream, or invent that gadget, or start that company that far exceeds expectations.

Yes, indeed … Freedom is frightening.

However … give me freedom every time. 

I have learned that I can make some good and reasonable decisions for my life.  Oh, it has taken me a few years to reach that point, but I have reached it.

So … bring on freedom. 

Seth Godin wraps up this thought in a neat little package.

We willfully create
the illusion that we
have no choice
because it’s frightening
to be free.
Seth Godin
What to Do when It’s Your Turn

Words of Hope
Encouragement Inspiration
One Word at a Time

Thursday, February 9, 2017

The Hardest Nut to Crack

We wrestle some dangerous demons in a lifetime. 

We fight with the demon of …
 ~Competition from others
~Technology that constantly changes and is costly
~A fickled economy
~Our own integrity in any given situation
~Loyalty to an idea or to the right choice regardless

I could go on, but I’m pretty sure you catch the idea here.

All of these phrases are real and the struggle is real in each of our lives.

But the hardest … the most difficult nut to crack in all of life is this …

What are you telling yourself … what are you selling yourself … what do you believe about your life and your dreams?

Dreams are good and noble; they are important and necessary … and they beg to be believed in.

How many jobs have you not applied for just because you eliminated yourself before you even made the first mark on the application?

How many good, yeah great ideas lie in the dust at your feet simply for want of that one ingredient that every great idea needs … belief from you.

This ‘belief’ factor is the hardest nut to crack in any endeavor.

Some gain it more easily than others. 

And we all must gain it if we are to make our ultimate mark in this world. 

A personal note:  I write today because I had to cross that painful threshold and move from ‘talk’ about writing to ‘writing’.  Oh, my, the fears, the angst, the battle within me of “can I”, “will they read or laugh”, and a dozen more anxieties sprang up.  Somehow, from somewhere deep within, I convinced myself that ‘yes’ I can do this and I will do this no matter what.”

I doubt many of us want to be president, or congressman/woman.  But surely there is something down inside of you that you’ve always desired, wanted to be, longed to try to make, or some company you wanted to build.

What is it and what is stopping that next step? 

Have you sold yourself on your worthiness to go and be and do that ‘thing’?

That is the pink elephant on the table. 

In the beginning, the world will not beat a path to your door begging for whatever it is you do.  We don’t know what it is you can do until you believe in your idea enough and then dare to show us. 

Tough thing to do.

Here’s the secret sauce.   Once you convince yourself you can do it – you will discover you can do it.

How amazing is that?

Here’s the summation …
The hardest sale you’ll ever make
Is to yourself.  But once you’re
Convinced you can do it, you can.
~Harvey McKay

Words of Hope
Encouragement Inspiration
One Word at a Time