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Archive for the ‘The Journey’ Category

IT MATTERS


What:

  • You think
  • You say
  • You advocate
  • You believe
  • You hear
  • You consume
  • You imagine
  • You _____________ (fill in the blank)

It is undeniable that our lives here are purposeful, each and everyone of us.  Why?  Because we do not live in a vacuum.  We matter, some way, somehow, to someone and somebodies.  We matter.  The thought that nothing escapes being important, not even the “innocent” or the “trivial” matter-of-fact details in our lives, the concept that nothing or no one goes unused, is literally amazing.

The pats on the backs, the kisses, the mistakes, the regrets–it all adds up in momentous results in our individual and collective lives.

Isn’t life good?  It’s not just taking up space and time — it matters.

May what matters to you matter to others!

Thoughts from the…

Voice Of A Writer.

Finding/Respecting/Embracing YOUR Writing Voice


Ira Glass says it well:

A repost from blogger,  Wendy Strukus of The Next Small Thing.

Strong Words of Encouragement….

Voice of A Writer

Pressure… How Sweet It Is!


There is plenty of  pressure to perform and do those things we must do in order to:

  • Eat
  • Wear clean clothes
  • Pass a class
  • Clean our house
  • Get a paycheck
  • Have a finished product
  • Finish reading that book
  • Look presentable (as opposed to being unkempt)
  • Research
  • Network
  • Ecetera, ecetera, you get the hint

But, oh how efficient it is!  Pressure gets the adrenalin pumped and then there’s nothing to do but to do.

Now, true, there are some of us whose doing looks more like couch potato riding or fighting hot air.  Say what you may — it’s still some kind of doing, some type of performing.  Might be a sad, bad act, but nevertheless — something’s happening.  The end result might not be so pleasant, but, possibly, over time, enough unpleasant results may cause new pressure and kick up the performance, changing it from a sad act to a determined act.

When we reach the point that a combination of laughter, sweat and tears is how we stare pressure down, we are in a good place.  Why?  Because we know then that the pressure is useful.  It gets us revved up, causes us to dig deep and pull out things we probably could have never done absent of our pal, Mr. Pressure.

Pressure might sometimes appear heartless, but it sure can be good.  One thing for certain, it will produce something; whether it’s a good something or not so good something.  It will get it’s money’s worth and will have left something to show for it’s presence/trouble.  Success or failure, it has a face.

With the help of pressure, we are given a nudge to go deep and pull out absolutely incredible, unique and unexpected gems; GEMS that we would have never known existed had there been a lack of pressure.  Pressure’s alright.  It let’s the genius out.  Oftentimes it’s the ingredient that turns the just average or simply good into the … well — PHENOMENAL.  When pressure comes… dig in deep, then enjoy the results!

Toast with me:  To pressure — and what it produces!

From the…

Voice of a Writer.

Ruts


Ruts are a good time to reflect. Forget the notion that they are a place for wallowing and licking your wounds. Not so. They are for inhaling, exhaling and digging in deep. Ruts have their benefits.

I am in a rut right now. No shame. Not exactly especially proud of it either but look, it is what it is. Everybody runs into one every now and then, ruts are like inclement weather —  they come and go. Sure, it’s not something you choose any more than you choose to have a migraine headache. But just like a migraine it has it’s benefits: getting much needed rest/seeing a doctor/taking better care of yourself, etc.  Ruts make the inner man uncomfortable. The benefit is not complacency if we behave properly while in it.

Some of us work ourselves ragged trying to shake out of it. I am not doing that. Not anymore. It’s too tiring.

Instead, I have chosen to immerse myself in some good, solid, biblical preaching. Praying quietly for strength and relaxing while I’m here.

Good things come from ruts: inspiration, deeper faith and rest. Personally,  I need this anyway.

True, bad things hang out in ruts too: depression, bitterness, irritability, etc. By the grace of God, I (simply) walk pass them, refuse to give them too much attention… I was definitely tempted, but thankfully, quickly remembered and recognized their place in the rut, not as consolers but controllers, intent on keeping me with them.  Like any sane person — I prefer not.

I made a decision to keep my eyes on what’s good, the light. The light that houses hope, love, and faith is the same light  the Bible speaks of when it speaks of God, Yaaweh, Jehovah and Jesus. It is the light that keeps me company and nurses my spirit while I spend time in this rut. TEMPORARY rut.

Thank God ruts pass!

From the inside of a pesky rut, but only a short while, me, the….

Voice of A Writer 

Even the hopeless have…


… hope.

Sure they do they. Hopelessness is not absence of hope, it’s the absence of proper hope. Think about it for a moment.

If someone’s hope is in material things, people or expectations, they are likely, one day, to become disenchanted. See, those things are all fleeting.

Now, hope in things that are solid, un-moving, constant… well that’s better.  But what? What are those things that don’t dissipate and disappoint and are always there?

That’s the nice thing about living. You’re bound to meet a person, read a book or get thrust into a situation that will send you straight to that answer.

Keep living and look out for that that proper hope. It’s why I’m still around!

From…the….

Voice Of A Writer.

Gratitude Radio Interview


Listen to my interview on “Doin the Do”.  I discuss the inspiration for my essay on Going for Gratitude.

Listen to
internet radio with I Like It All on Blog Talk Radio

Going for GRATITUDE


My fellow writers, artist, aspiring entrepreneurs, risk takers, go-getters and out of the box movers and shakers: I know that we all find ourselves discouraged from time to time on the journey. After all it’s no wonder that over the centuries, artists have been known to be deeply depressed in addition to being profoundly talented.

The same source that produces talent makes room for the unpleasant too. It is us (referring to the aforementioned) who (through the grace of God) take it and make it the pleasantries for the masses to enjoy, appreciate and understand. Until they do – – the world simply does not fully appreciate what we have to offer.

Did the world appreciate Steve Jobs when he was a ‘whiz kid’ building computers and programs in his parents’ basement? How about the multitude of others who are now well-known or well-appreciated that make up and empower our world… our lives. Before they were ‘known’, before that big break or groundswell… was there room for disappointment and discouragement in their lives?

Sure it was.  That is universally how life runs it’s course: ebb and flow, ups and downs, rain and sunshine. No one is immune.

However,  for the artist or the square peg it is sometimes particularly more pronounced. Lack of empathy or camaraderie or even guilt may overshadow the internal pain of discouragement and blow it out of control and for some, become depression.

Borrowing from scripture, I say: take heart… Jesus has overcome the world!

Be grateful.  Take hold of your faith and allow it to overcome the present disappointments. Emphasize the good that your uniqueness has gifted you with and dismiss negative thinking. Thinking/believing/living in this manner is how gratitude really looks.  Persevering is the antidote to discouragement. Persevering is gratitude in action.

Go. For. GRATITUDE.

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