Tuesday, May 29, 2012

2012-22 - You do have a choice

Very often we say we have no choice when what we really have is a very difficult choice. You’ve no doubt heard yourself or someone else say things like “I have no choice but to work 70 hours a week” or “I have no choice but to go to this meeting.” In such situations, “I have no choice” really means “the choice is too difficult to make, so I’ll pretend it doesn’t exist."

Such thinking can be a trap. You can pile up one “no choice” on top of another until your life seems completely out of control. But no matter where you are, you do have a choice about almost everything you do.

You have chosen the path to where you are right now, and you have complete control over where you are going from here. Yes, the choices will indeed be difficult, but there’s nothing to be gained by denying them. The next time you catch yourself saying you have no choice, stop and ask yourself if that is really true.

The way to improve your life is to make the choices which will take you to where you desire to be. Have the courage to look at those choices. Carefully consider their implications. Decide to take complete control and make the choices which will move your life forward.

~ Ralph Marston
" Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it's always your choice."

~ Wayne Dyer

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

2012-21 - Never Neglect the Little Things...

Should you ever take a New York helicopter cruise and pass over the majestic Statue of Liberty, pay special attention.

Lady Liberty's steel-frame-supported copper body stands 305 feet above sea level. As your helicopter circles closer, look down at the top of Liberty's head and see how every strand of hair has been painstakingly formed in careful and minute detail, just as is every area of the statue's gown and body. That delicate metallic coiffure on the top of her head undoubtedly required many hours of extra weeks at Auguste Bartholdi's shop in Paris, weeks that the great sculptor could have saved, because so far as he knew, no one would ever see the top of Lady Liberty's head!

The Statue of Liberty was dedicated on October 28, 1886 by President Grover Cleveland. There were no airplanes in 1886! The Wright brothers wouldn't fly until seventeen years later. Bartholdi was well aware that only a few brave sea gulls would probably ever look down on the statue from above, and certainly no one would ever know if the strands of hair had not been meticulously shaped and polished. And yet, the master craftsman took no shortcuts. Every strand of hair, every curl, is in place.

~ Author Unknown
"All that is not perfect down to the smallest detail is doomed to perish."

~ Gustav Mahler

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

2012-20 - Quest for the Gold

Ever since watching the 1976 Summer Olympic Games I’ve thought that there should be a special gold medal presented to the Olympic athlete who displayed extraordinary courage during the summer or winter games.

The image that is seared into my memory is the face of the Japanese gymnast landing a triple somersault twist dismount from the rings. His face was scrunched in pain, yet Shun Fujimoto never moved an inch as he stuck his landing - even though he landed on a broken right knee. It was a display of extraordinary courage and garnered Japan the gold medal in team gymnastics.

Earlier in the competition, Fujimoto injured his knee during the floor exercise. As the team competition continued, it became clear that the gold medal would be decided on the rings apparatus - Fujimoto’s strongest event. Hobbling to the rings, he was hoisted to grab the rings where he performed a near-flawless routine. Then, as if holding their breath, everyone watching the games waited for the dismount, which he would have to stick perfectly to secure the team gold medal for Japan.

When Fujimoto left the rings it seemed as if the entire sequence proceeded in slow motion. He twisted and somersaulted through the air and stuck a perfect landing. His face registered the pain tearing through his broken right knee. Cheers erupted - for his heroic performance of courage earned Fujimoto and his teammates the Olympic gold medal.

Later interviewed about his extraordinary feat, Fujimoto said, "Yes, the pain shot through me like a knife. It brought tears to my eyes. But now I have a gold medal and the pain is gone."

~ Fr. Brian Cavanaugh
“Extraordinary people survive under the most terrible circumstances and they become more extraordinary because of it.”

~ Robertson Davies.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

2012-19 - Make a difference...

Your time is never wasted when you're truly making a difference. Every productive effort adds value to your world.

Don't worry about what's in it for you. If you're making a difference, if you're making a positive contribution to life, there's always something in it for you.

Though there may not seem to be any direct or immediate rewards, your efforts will most certainly be rewarded. The longer you're willing to wait for those rewards, the bigger they will be.

Many times your efforts will pay off in ways you could not have foreseen. Keep being creative, keep being productive, keep being effective, and keep being your best.

It may sometimes seem that no one appreciates the work you're doing. When you feel that way, then raise your efforts to an even higher level, for at some point someone will definitely take notice.

Be sincere in your efforts and in your desire to make a valuable, meaningful positive difference. And know that the rewards will always come.

~ Author Unknown
"Many of the great achievements of the world were accomplished by tired and discouraged men who kept on working."

~ Author Unknown

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

2012-18 - Winners keep on winning...

Staying on top is often more challenging than getting there in the first place.

There's an awesome responsibility, challenge and vulnerability in being the leader. It is a position which must be handled with confidence, and a certain amount of humility.

Just because you're a winner today, doesn't mean you're set for life. Just because you've accomplished great things, doesn't make you immune from failure. Enjoy the victory, bask in the glory, and then find an even bigger challenge. Take your vision to a new level, and see things that have never been seen before.

There's no point in winning, if you let it make you complacent. See every achievement as a stepping stone to even greater things. Catch your breath, and then get back in the race while your momentum is still strong. When you become the leader, the challenge has just begun. Rise to that challenge, and the possibilities are extraordinary.

~ Ralph Marston
"Winning is not a sometime thing; it's an all time thing. You don't win once in a while, you don't do things right once in a while, you do them right all the time. Winning is habit."

~ Vince Lombardi