Choose “Productive.” Choose Happy.

Choose happy?

How naïve of me, right, in light of the reality of mass killings, brutal war, global tragedies, and random horror?

Yet, those realities are why we must choose productive thoughts over dark thoughts that harm us and others. You may not pick up an AR-15 and start shooting, but some will.

Obviously, we cannot choose to live in a place where there are no disasters, killers, or despots. We cannot choose our genetics, or the opportunities we do not have, or who our parents were, or how we were raised, or what we have been forced to live without, or what disabilities we have.

But, right now, we can choose to make peace with that reality (however unpleasant it is) and take responsibility for making the best of it instead of choosing hatred and anger for those who have taken life, or who have what we want, or who have treated us unjustly.

Letting go of pain is not easy.

But, it is easier than holding on and allowing it to breed more darkness in the short lives we have.

Take the Word of an Overcomer

When life confuses or defeats me

I can listen to dark voices  

Of anger and despair

Or to the voices that call  

Out of the darkest places

From history

Or from the other side

Of tragedy

Voices that still sing 

A chorus of power

With shining eyes

Heads held high, defying

The worst that life can bring

A voice of triumph

Singing, yes! singing

In mysterious harmony

With my future 

our future selves

Listen carefully.

Worried about Doomsday…Again?

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I just saw that September 23rd has been predicted to be the end of the world.
Do you think they were referring to September 23rd in Australia or in the US?
I am curious because I will, ironically, be in Australia on September 23rd and, one day later, arriving back in the US on the 23rd. Which part of the trip should I be worried about?
I am speaking tongue in cheek, but, in reality, even barring a catastrophic end of the world tomorrow, September 23rd will be the end of “the world” for many.
The harsh truth is that many die every day…and one of them someday will be me.
So, I guess a “double” doomsday prediction should give me nothing more to worry about.
A very happy September 22nd to us all.

Got a Chaos Management Plan?

Do you have a chaos management plan (CMP)? Not just for North Korea but for the other times when your life is “nuked” by relationship, financial, or circumstantial violence.

We can’t be lulled into thinking we don’t need one, especially if we are currently quite impressed with ourselves and our “cool.”

It doesn’t take much for the props that make us feel cool to fall away and our inner deficits to be embarrassingly exposed.

My simple CMP:

  1. Accept what is.
  2. Forgive myself and others for the chaos.
  3. Invest in inner strength more than props.
  4. Expect chaos and smile at the future.

Look Disappointment in the Eye

Look disappointment in the eye…and plow on through.

That’s what Ben Ferencz has been doing since successfully prosecuting twenty-two Nazi SS officers for atrocities in 1947; fighting relentlessly against genocide and oppression all over the world. When asked by CBS if it discouraged him that the world was still full of injustice, he said, “No. It takes courage not to get discouraged,” then reminded Lesley Stahl of the progress that had been made.

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It takes courage not to get discouraged is a bit redundant, yet, because I am a person who throws in the towel too easily, it has become my new motto. Thank you, Ben, for your inspiration.

Today, I Inaugurate Myself

Today, I inaugurate myself

As the commander in chief of my own future

I celebrate my promotion

To the role of the productive leader

Of my life, full of promise and hope

Out off yesterday’s role of

Chicken little, hopeless victim, or discouraged martyr

Today I will usher myself

With a flourish and a solemn promise

Into my new position of power

Supported by the noble and the brave

Who have gone before, and will come after

Those who chose, and will choose

Action over words

Mercy over malice

And resolve over fear


Election Recovery

Anger won’t fix it.

Euphoria won’t last.

Even the best of humans will need forgiveness.

There are no deliverers and magic potions.

The only elixir for election hangover?


Courage to look square in the face of our humanity

In whatever form it threatens

And ask for help.

And be help

Without whining

Without arrogance

Without animosity for winners or losers.

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With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in…

Abraham Lincoln, March 4, 1865

I’ll Donate Half of My Liver

Not a pick-up line that the average Joe would use, but it unexpectedly brought great love into the lives of two strangers.

Chris Dempsey said he was in the break room one day when he overheard a guy talking about this woman who needed a liver donor. “I spent four years in the Marine Corps and learned there never to run away from anything. So I just said to myself, ‘Hey, if I can help, I’m going to help.’”

What a response! And what a great reminder of a no-strings-attached generosity that attracts the right people into our lives.

Most of us want two things from a partner: 1) strength and independence, and 2) generosity. Chris Dempsey sure had that nailed.

Want better results with romance? Start here.


Story and photo courtesy of CBS Evening News.

Before We Bash


Before we bash the leaders of the election debacle for everything under the sun, we might consider getting off our high horse long enough to recall…

  • times we have slung our own share of mud at family members, exes, bosses, coworkers, neighbors, teachers, and cable companies
  • hyperbolic indictments we have made against rivals or merely those who disagreed with, or contradicted us
  • grudges we have held
  • bridges we have burned
  • blame and shame we have passed around like a virus
  • reputations we have tarnished with adolescent-like gossip

After all, the debacle would not be happening if we “noble Americans” and humanoids were not such practiced and gullible targets for pathetically embarrassing and immature tactics.

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I detest the deafening static of the election as much as anyone, so I am not suggesting we should embrace it; only that we should look at the TV or computer screen carefully enough to see our own reflection staring back at us.