the secret of getting ahead…

in Jack Canfield’s book The Success Principles

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.  The secret of getting started is breaking your complex, overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks and then starting on the first one.”  Mark Twain

Let’s face it, most of us get stuck in the overwhelmed stage and don’t even get to breaking the tasks into bite-sized pieces.  That’s where our inner drive comes in because more often than not these things don’t “need” to be done on a timeline, if at all.  It’s just a dream we have.  We don’t have to answer to anyone, not even ourselves.  Besides, we’ll do it “later.”  And quite frankly watching tv (or any other thing we do for procrastination) is so much easier to do and more fun in the short-term.  We can be deliciously lazy because no one knows about our dream, except for us, and we’ve given ourselves the okay to just take another day off.  I think that it is essential to our souls to have deliciously lazy days where we sit in stillness, putter around the house, watch movies and enjoy and luxuriate in the fact that we have chosen not to do anything that day.  The problem is when we are having “stressed out” lazy days which we have when we are procrastinating and we run around like chickens with our heads cut off not really accomplishing anything of importance and at the end of the day we’re still stressed out deep inside because we are not taking action on our dreams.   I also believe we need we need “prayer days” or “quiet days,” (whatever you want to call them) written in pen on the calendar for at least three hours to sit in stillness-that means no getting up to just get one load of laundry started or make one quick phone call (I don’t care if it is related to your dream you should have done it earlier!).  Three hours, impossible you say; just find a way to get as much time as you can at this point in your life that will work for you and your life and then tweak it to make it fit better.  Just sit.  Be present-there are no worries in the present, right this minute you are fine and you are here and you are breathing, feel your body sink into the chair or the ground you have no place to go because you’ve set aside a block of time.  The more you show up and practice, the easier it gets.  Even if you don’t think you can do it, just show up and sit.  Sit through the loud thoughts and the endless chatter of the “monkey brain,” as the Buddhists call it.  That’s where you are right now.  That’s fine.  It is annoying and sometimes not all that restfull but it’s still good. That’s where you are right now.  That’s fine.  Just show up and keep showing up.  And sit a while.

“It doesn’t take any more energy to create a big dream than it does to create a little one.”  General Wesley Clark

So, why then, do we box ourselves in to what we think we can do and what we cannot do.

“Everything you experience today is the result of choices you have made in the past.  Everything you experience in life-both internally and externally-is the result of how you have responded to a previous event….You only have control over three things in your life-the thoughts you think, the images you visualize, and the actions you take (your behavior).  How you use these three things determines everything you experience.  If you don’t like what you are producing and experiencing, you have to change your responses.   Change your negative thoughts to positive ones.  Change what you daydream about.  Change your habits.  Change what you read.  Change your friends.  Change how you talk.  If you keep on doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep on getting what you’ve always gotten.”  Jack Canfield

I think we’re supposed to go back over a situation in our heads, not to be miserable or think I’m right, they’re a jerk, but rather to visualize the different outcomes that would have felt better and then to use that information the next time.  So, instead of yelling (or loudly talking) to your child not to do something, because you’ve visualized (and meditated) you don’t react on automatic pilot.  You catch your anger rising and you become conscious and change the situation and have the child help you with dinner or something that changes and dissipates the tension.  Or you can yell at them and watch the rest of the evening spiral down in anger and frustration.


in the barn

This was in Debbie Ford’s book The Dark Side of the Light Chasers:

A grandfather and his two young grandsons went into an old barn.  The one boy said “This barn stinks like horse manure; let’s get out of here.”  The other boy started to run around looking for something.  “What are you looking for and why are you so happy?” the grandfather asked.  The boy said, “With all that horse manure in here there must be a pony around here somewhere!”

recommended books for children (and grownups)…

*People* by Peter Spier is FANTASTIC!!!

Faithful Elephants: A True Story of Animals, People, and War  by Yukio Tsuchiya is sooo sad and brilliant

Mrs. Biddlebox: Her Bad Day and What She Did About It  by Linda Smith is soo lovely

Grateful:  A Song of Giving Thanks by John Bucchino

Because Brian Hugged His Mother by David L. Rice is a reflection of out lives whether we want to admit it or not***

I Believe In Me by Connie Bowen has wonderful affirmations

I Think, I Am!  by Louise L. Hay

All For the Best by Hans Wilhelm because we never truly know what’s going on

Zen Shorts; Zen Ties both by Jon J. Muth

Giving Thanks:  A Native American Good Morning Message by Chief Jake Swamp

Brother Eagle, Sister Sky:  A Message From Chief Seattle  by Susan Jeffers

Because Nothing Looks Like God by Lawrence Kushner and Karen Kushner

Fun Is A Feeling by Chara M. Curtis

Unstoppable Me! : 10 Ways To Soar Through Life   by Wayne W. Dyer

The Way I Feel by Janan Cain

The Blue Day Book For Kids:A Lesson In Cheering Yourself Up by Bradley Trevor Greene

The Gigantic Little Hero: A Story of Perserverance by Matt Whitlock

When I Feel Angry by Cornelia Maude Spelman

Mad Isn’t Bad by Michaelene Mundy

Happy To Be Me by Christine Adams and Robert J. Butch

A Children’s Book About Teasing by Joy Berry

Faerie Charms by Ted Andrews

The Mountains of Tibet by Mordicai Gerstein

The Babies Are Landing by Joan Margalith

Amazing you!   Getting Smart About Your Private Parts –A First Guide to Body Awareness for Preschoolers (or even older!)  by Dr. Gail Saltz (wonderful book for being open about this subject which can be difficult and uncomfortable to approach)

On The Day You Were Born Debra Frasier

Cookies: Bite-Sized Life Lessons by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

The Secret Of Water For The Children Of The World by Masaru Emoto

Each Breath A Smile: Based on teachings by Thich Nhat Hahn  story by Sister Susan

Emma and Mommy Talk To God by Marianne Williamson

My Invisible Friends by Michelle Whitedove

Rainbow Soul by Marilyn Rich

Old Turtle by Douglas Wood

Spirit Games by Barbara Sher

create quote

“Create a good day.”

(instead of the popular “Have a good day.”)  This was from something my dad heard on the radio back in the 80’s and if stuck with us.  The guy on the radio said something to the effect that you couldn’t passively “have” a good day, but rather that you had to take the initiative to “create” a good day.

one of my favorite quotes

“I am exactly where I need to be.”

(many new inspirational thinkers have said or alluded to this)  I say this to myself whenever I’m running late (and then I try to leave earlier next time) and figure if I was supposed to be where I was running late to, I would already be there.  But, I’m not and I start to pay attention to the people I meet along my “late” way because the universe orchestrated us to be together energetically in this pattern for some reason (and I feel the tesion drain out of my body).  And usually wherever I’m going is running a little late as well.  If this “being-ness” is regarding a job, home, relationship, etc. perhaps there is still a lesson to be learned or lived or a person to meet or a need to wait for Divine timing to shift things around so it’s time to be patient or look at things another way that you hadn’t thought of before.  Maybe the guy you’re waiting for is moving into town next year; maybe you decide on a completely different area to move to that you wouldn’t have thought of if you had sold your house last year and would had moved to the “wrong” area and then had to spend the money and have the stress of moving a second time in a short duration of time.  Life is like the game of “Life.”  Aww bummer, you landed on “Invest in Broadway Play–Pay $15,000”  Oh cool, you landed on “Win Nobel Peace Prize–Collect $100,000.”  And your emotions go up and down and up and down, now this happened and you’re happy, now this happened and you’re mad.  Aren’t you tired?  I guess that’s where Buddhism, new agey-ness and mindfulness come in–oh this happened isn’t that interesting; do I need to do anything about it, no, yes, maybe and how am I going to do it angrily, victim-like, strong and quiet or depending on the circumstances you decide you don’t need to do anything and let the situation roll off you like water off a duck’s back and don’t think about it again unless it’s to see what went “wrong” and where you could make different choices the next time.  If the memory that makes you angry or sad comes up again think of a pleasant memory, get into nature for a walk, or get a sip of water–change your brain (and no the world is not out to get you).  Namaste and many blessings***

recommended books, etc. continued

Ask and It Is Given by Esther and Jerry Hicks

Healing Mantras by Thomas Ashley-Farrand

The Reconnection by Dr. Eric Pearl

Healing with the Angels Oracle Cards by Doreen Virtue

The Triple Goddess Tarot by Isha Lerner

Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui by Karen Kingston

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

The Dark Side of the Light Chasers by Debbie Ford

A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle

Change Your Handwriting, Change Your Life by Vimala Rodgers

Animal Speak by Ted Andrews

Siddhartha by Herman Hesse

author Cheryl Richardson

author Sonia Choquette

The Success Principles by Jack Canfield

Sylvia Browne

Awakening the Buddha Within by Lama Surya Das

Doing Less and Having More by Marcia Wieder

The Alchemist by Coehlo

Live Your Bliss by Terry Cole-Whittaker

any writings by Rudolph Steiner

recommended books, audio cds, etc.

You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay

Spiritual Madness (CD) by Caroline Myss

Excuses Begone by Wayne Dyer

Fit Soul, Fit Body by Brant Secunda and Mark Allen

Change Your Aura, Change Your Life by Barbara Martin

Prepare For Surgery, Heal Faster by Peggy Huddleston

Sacred Space by Denise Linn

Soul Coaching by Denise Linn

The New Feminine Brain by Dr. Mona Lisa Schulz

sFrom Fatigued to Fantastic by Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum

Lessons in Meditation by John Novak

The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron