Brilliant! Strive to do more.

I am always amazed at the fight and fortitude of my sweet daughter. She is currently in the 9th grade and has strived for 100’s her whole life. This was the first year (the year things begin to count for high school) that she was told by a few of her teachers, “You don’t have to get 100, you can still get an A even if it is above 93.”

My daughter is determined. Someone her age told her last year that getting 100 all the time was impossible, so I think that is a little spark that continues to inspire her. She keeps giving and doing and not giving up. She want’s 100. She goes over and beyond and her will to do her best is inspiring to me.

If we all could find that glimmer, that spark to go a little farther, to work a little harder and live to our potential, that would be a gift to us all.

I tell her to find a balance. That she does NOT have to get 100, but there is something inside her that wants to do her best despite everything or anyone else’s opinion. She says, “It’s my will, not pressure. I know I only have to get 93, but there is something in me that wants to go further.”

There is a world full of people, but I do believe there are select few who truly live up to their purpose, their potential. I admire that & will not be the one to stop her from striving to do her best.

HOW COULD WE ALL STRIVE TO GO A LITTLE FURTHER??

I am going to look at SOME of histories greats and see if I can find some good tips, to do lists, success lessons that we can all learn from.

RGB-h_02329678 Oprah WinfreyLESSONS from OPRAH

A book that changed her life, “Seat of the Soul” by Gary Zukav.

“In it, [Zukav] talks about how every action is followed by a reaction, which we all know is the third law of motion in physics,” explains Winfrey. “But he also said, before there’s even a thought or an action, there is an intention.

“Something struck me about that,” says Winfrey. “That an intention precedes every thought and every action, and the outcome of your experiences is determined by the intention.”

“THIS PRINCIPLE OF INTENTION IS LITERALLY WHAT SAVED AND CHANGED THE TRAJECTORY OF MY LIVING.”-Oprah Winfrey, media mogul  https://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/15/the-one-book-that-changed-oprah-winfreys-life-and-business.html

Lessons for Success: 

How do you find your own flow? Here are the four things you need to know to make the right decisions and be successful in work and life, according to Winfrey.

“EVERY DECISION I’VE EVER MADE THAT LED ME TO THE RIGHT SPACE AND PLACE IN MY LIFE, I GOT THERE BECAUSE I RELIED ON THAT INNER VOICE.”

1. What is your inner voice telling you?

“Everybody has what I call this instinct, this inner voice,” says Winfrey at Skidmore. “Every decision I’ve ever made that led me to the right space and place in my life, I got there because I relied on that inner voice.”

2. What is your intention?

3. What are you grateful for?

“I practice being grateful,” says Winfrey, and she knows what you’re thinking. “And a lot of people say, ‘Oh Oprah, that’s easy for you ’cause you got everything!'”

No, says Winfrey: “I got everything because I practiced being grateful.”

4. What is your truth?

In 1998, Winfrey was sued for defamation by a group of cattle ranchers to the tune of $10.3 million for “saying something bad about a burger.” (Google it, she says.)

“Everybody goes through trials — I just happened to be in an actual trial,” says Winfrey. “There’s going to be a trial in your life,” she tells the Skidmore graduates. “It may be disease, it may be jobs, it may be any number of crises that stand outside yourself to try to tell you who you are.

“And it is your job to know the truth” of who you are, says Winfrey. “And let that truth set you free.”  https://www.cnbc.com/2017/05/23/oprah-winfrey-these-are-the-4-things-you-need-to-know-for-success.html

 

2015_leonardocodex_001 (1)LESSONS from LEONARDO DA VINCI:

He was a painter, architect, inventor, and student of all things scientific. He is best known for his art, including the famous, Mona Lisa painting.

He would carry around a notebook where he would write down anything that “moved him.”  Buried in one of these books, dating back to around the 1490’s, is a to-do list. Check this out. Here is a sampling: Calculate the measurement of Milan and Suburbs, Get the master of arithmetic to show you how to square a triangle, Examine the Crossbow of Mastro Giannetto, Find a master of hydraulics and get him to tell you how to repair a lock, canal and mill in the Lombard manner, Ask about the measurement of the sun promised me by Maestro Giovanni Francese…(that is not everything) You can just feel Da Vinci’s voracious curiosity and intellectual restlessness. Note how many of the entries are about getting an expert to teach him something, be it mathematics, physics or astronomy. Also who casually lists “draw Milan” as an ambition?
http://www.openculture.com/2014/12/leonardo-da-vincis-to-do-list-circa-1490-is-much-cooler-than-yours.html

 

stephen-hawking-death-atheismLESSONS from STEPHEN HAWKING:

Stephen Hawking , he is considered one of the most brilliant theoretical physicists since Einstein. He authored a brief history of time, an international best seller, From 1979 to 2009 he was the Lucasian Professor at Cambridge, a position held by Isaac Newton in 1663. Professor Hawking has over a dozen honorary degrees.

Some of his quotes to live by…

Advice he shared with his children: “Look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see, and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious.”- Stephen Hawking

Don’t give up: “The victim should have the right to end his life, if he wants. But I think it would be a great mistake. However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. While there’s life, there is hope.”

Nothing is perfect: “One of the basic rules of the universe is that nothing is perfect, Perfection simply doesn’t exist…without imperfection, neither you nor I would exist.”

Matter of attitude: “People won’t have time for you if you are always angry or complaining.”

Matter of purpose: “Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it.”

Matter of perspective: “When one’s expectations are reduced to zero, one really appreciates everything one does have.”

 

10-valuable-lessons-from-richard-branson-part-i-1024x682LESSONS from RICHARD BRANSON:

Here is some actual information from some of Richard Branson’s To Do Lists. Branson emphasizes his “love of writing lists” and how it started from a young age. “Lists not only provide great structure for getting things done, but they also help us to set goals and achieve our dreams,” Branson wrote. Way back on a list from 1972 he listed, “Learn to fly, open more Virgin Record Stores, clean up…”

Fast forward 45 years and take a look at where Branson is today. He has a net worth of about $5 billion and is the founder of an organization that houses more than 450 companies. It’s safe to say Branson is doing more than OK. In part, he thanks to-do lists for this.

HIS SUCCESS TIPS:

1. Follow your dreams

You’ll never be successful if you don’t love what you do and wake up every morning excited. “Those people who spend their time working on things they love are usually the ones enjoying life the most,” Branson says. “They are also the ones who dared to take a risk and chase their dreams.”

2. Do some good

According to Branson, “if you aren’t making a positive difference to other people’s lives, then you shouldn’t be in business.” This goes not only for individuals, but companies as a whole, Branson says.

3. Believe in your ideas

If you aren’t advocating for yourself, you’re not giving anyone else a reason to. As Branson says, “If you aren’t proud of your idea and believe in your plans, why should anybody else?”

4. Have fun

Though often underrated, Branson calls fun one of the most important ingredients in any successful business. “If you’re not having fun, then it’s probably time to try something else,” he writes.

The concept of having fun has driven some of Branson’s most successful businesses, especially when he was first starting out. When he went to the CEOs of Virgin Music with the idea of using a third of the company’s profits to start an airline because he believed it would be “fun,” they weren’t entirely on board, Business Insider reports. But Branson persisted and Virgin Atlantic, one of the company’s most well-known properties, was born.

5. Don’t give up

“On every adventure I have been on — whether setting up a business, flying around the world in a balloon or racing across the ocean in a boat — there have been moments when the easy thing to do would be to give up,” Branson writes. But, by sticking things through, he’s propelled himself to immense success, both personal and professional.

Branson’s onto something with this tip. Psychologist and MacArthur “Genius” fellow Angela Duckworth spent years researching achievement, and found that talent by itself is only one factor. Success also requires determined effort, and lots of it.

“Without effort, your talent is nothing more than your unmet potential,” Duckworth writes in her book, “Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance.”

6. Keep setting new challenges

“If you don’t write down your ideas, they could be gone by the morning,” Branson says. He solves this problem himself by making lists of every kind, from ideas for companies to upcoming plans.

“Write down every single idea you have, no matter how big or small,” he wrote in a blog post. And then challenge yourself to follow through. You never know what’s going to hit.

7. Learn to delegate

Learning that you don’t have to do everything yourself is a difficult skill for many entrepreneurs, but it’s worth it. “If you find people who can take on tasks you aren’t good at, it frees you up to plan for the future,” Branson writes.

8. Look after your team

Your personal success matters, but so does the success of your team. Branson points out the importance of fostering a welcoming, safe and innovative work environment: “If your staff are having fun and genuinely care about other people, they will enjoy their work more and do a better job.”

It’s also crucial to hire the right people. “Find people who look for the best in others, praise rather than criticise, and love what they do,” Branson writes.

9. Get out there

Success — and adventure — isn’t going to come to you. You’ve got to go find it. “Rather than sitting in front of a screen all your life, switch off the TV or the computer and go out into the world,” Branson says.

10. When people say bad things about you, prove them wrong

To thrive, you must be prepared for critics and copycats.

“Some people will react to success by trying to hang onto your coat tails,” Branson warns. “The best thing you can do is to not only ignore them, but to prove them wrong in every single way.”

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/07/21/billionaire-richard-bransons-top-tips-for-success.html

 

 

3-Questions-motivation-manifestoLESSONS from someone who wrote THE MOTIVATION MANIFESTO: 

Brendon Burchard survived a horrible car crash & had what seems like a life awakening. He began asking people three questions: DID WE LIVE? DID WE LOVE FULLY? DID WE MAKE A DIFFERENCE and DID WE MATTER?   That is all I have to say about that. 

After diving into SOME of these greats I have realized how there are SO many more out there, so I may have to do additional blog posts on other people who have overcame, lived with purpose, went beyond and found their own kind of brilliance!! It is so motivating and fun to read life lessons, quotes and inspiration from so many incredible people.

We can all strive to do more with our lives. Love it!!

Peace and love to you today!!  -H

 

 

 

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SOUL SEEKERS: Thoughts by Sue Monk Kidd

maxresdefault-2I just watched a Super Soul Sunday with Oprah interviewing Sue Monk Kidd and wanted to share a few of my highlights from it. Enjoy!

Sue Monk Kidd has a unique story–mother, wife, nurse–the “safe life” and when she turned 30 she felt a deeper calling and purpose. She then announced to her family, “I am going to be a writer.” She wrote for years and at the age of 53 had a NY Best Seller from her book, The Secret Life of Bees, which was a best seller for more than 2 years & sold over 6 million copies.

I have not read any of her books, but her interview was inspiring. I am sure I will pick up her book to understand her even more. The BOLD quotes below were from the interview with Sue Monk Kidd. I then follow those up with my own thoughts about the quotes.

At one point in her life she read the works of Thomas Merton and his words really meant something deeper to her. It made her seek beyond herself and her religion.

 

7205282830_d87f20552e_b“The attention of the heart is truly what prayer is.”     I liked this thought because you can see how true it is. If you find wonder in the symmetry of leaves or the shadows of a tree, you can get lost in the lines of nature and become calm. OR, you can get lost in the attention of the world and not find peace, but noise and distraction. Where you place your attention does matter.

 

favim-com-23027“We are always seeking a place of belonging.”     I could relate to this thought because so much of my life was spent in a religion that is very tribe like. When I decided to seek my own path, it has been my path that I have had to find my own sense of personal belonging and freedom. I have not had to place my beliefs or my place in the hands of others. It is my space. My place.

 

4“Something that brings us alive, pay attention to that.”     We are all seekers of things that make us come alive, that fill us with excitement, that give us that sense of wholeness and purpose.  When you begin to learn something new, to find a new direction, there is something that comes alive within us and and we want more.

 

10-reasons-every-girl-should-study-abroad-4-1473842587“There is no place so awake and alive as the edge of becoming.”   I think we can all relate to this thought because we have had moments, inspiration, thrill as we stand on the edge of an idea, a dream, a newness, a becoming. You feel so alive!

 

rumi-voice-words-listen-2s5j.jpg_thumb_600w-square“Listen to the yearning within.”     I think we all need to get to that point where we truly listen within and wait patiently for direction, answers, inspiration and have a faith that we will begin to hear the yearnings of our heart.

 

pic-Love-Heart-Hands“Ask for the thing that lies at the bottom of your heart.”    I think as we begin to truly listen within, we will get deeper and deeper to the true knowing that lies at the bottom of our hearts. We have deeply innate knowing of a greater divineness that is held deeply within our hearts. It is the greatest gift, if we can learn to unbury it.

 

635836773350119896432457799_who-am-i-1024x575“Who am I?” Oprah shared how she was asked to answer this question and it took her a few days to really take it in and answer—NOT the labels she has or the labels the world has given her.     Sue then shared a similar experience—all the labels of the external self vs the TRUE inner self. She said, ‘maybe that is the point to life, to discover that part, to align with it, become more a part of it.”

 

thank-you-1“Always seek, but always acknowledge when you find something.”     This was a very true point for me. I have been a seeker for most of my life & I hear this thought & know I have not taken the appropriate time to say THANK YOU for the many gifts I have been able to Seek & Find. THANK YOU. THANK YOU. THANK YOU.

 

St.-Clair-Beach-Sunrise-8She quoted William Wordsworth saying we need “spots of time” to remember we are holy, this is divine.     I like the idea of having “spots of time” throughout your day to get quiet, to remember the holy reverence that is life.

 

862-03808243“We truly become what we pay attention to. If we pay attention to our fears, worries…that becomes our life.”     This is a good reminder for all of us to pay attention to what you truly pay attention to.  Are your days filled with worry and regret? or are your days filled with gratitude and love? Listen to the words you say, the thoughts you think and what energy you are putting out into the world. We truly do affect our lives & those around us. What are you focusing on?

 

45biglovequotesrefurbOprah then did a Q&A:

O: Point of Life.    SMK: to LOVE and CREATE

O: What you know for sure.   SMK: Just to BE is HOLY. Just to LIVE is a GIFT.     BEAUTIFUL.

Hope you were able to take something good from the highlights of this interview. I LOVE learning and sharing. We can learn from everything and everyone!!

Have a beautiful day. -H

 

 

 

 

365 NEW things to learn

quotes-about-joy.jpg

Martha Beck’s Plan for Finding JOY

I don’t know about you, but JOY is always a good thing. Here is Martha’s plan for finding  a little more JOY:

  1. Have a vision. Begin basing choices on what makes you feel freer and happier, rather than how you think an ideal life should look. [Create a vision board]
  2. Let go of what doesn’t work. Consider those things you’d like to release from your life–bad habits, toxic friends..think and repeat. Let go.
  3. Don’t be afraid to fail. People who worry about mistakes become paralyzed by that worry, but those who are relaxed about doing badly soon learn to do well. Success is built on failure.
  4. Pay attention to what really matters to you. Life makes things taxing when they are not important and delicious and relatively effortless when they are. Life feels good when it thrills you and bad when it doesn’t.         -taken from O Jan 2014

 

pixietea-playing-piano

PLAY something!!

A study of St. Andrews suggests that the more often subjects practiced playing a musical instrument, the more efficiently their brains processed info on nonmusical tasks.    -taken from O Jan 2014

 

635776100285016349216083755_love-yourself

“Love After Love” by Derek Walcott

The time will come when, with elation you will greet yourself arriving at your own door, in your own mirror and each smile at the other’s welcome, and say, sit here, eat.

You will love again the stranger who was your self. Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart to itself, to the stranger who has loved you all your life, whom you ignored for another, who knows you by your heart.

Take down the love letters from the bookshelf, the photographs, the desperate notes, peel your own image from the mirror. Sit. Feast on your life.

 

searching-for-lightLove this thought from Oprah

I stayed open to believing that no matter how hard the climb, there is always a way to let in a sliver of light to illuminate the path forward.

 

shutterstock_137461541-620x420

Andy Andrews thoughts on raising kids

Most people say, “Just trying to raise good kids.” BUT you need to think, “We are trying to raise good kids to be great adults.”

 

sunglasses-for-women1Something good for your EYES

BLINK: Researchers have discovered as screen time has increased, the level of a lubricating substance found in tears has decreased. Studies have shown that we normally blink 15-20 times per minute, but when using digital devices, that rate can be cut in half. Take a break and just blink.

EXERCISE: Research suggests that exercise may help prevent glaucoma. A study of more than 5,600 adults found those who exercised regularly (more than an hour a day) were 25 percent less likely to have low blood flow to their eyes. Circulation issues are thought to be the cause of glaucoma.

GRAB YOUR SHADES: to protect your eyes from possible UV damage. -O Oct 2015

 

Free-HugsLASTLY–Something to make you think

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”  -Maya Angelou

 

Peace and Happiness to you.  -H        Look for my next 365 post.

Traditions to bring people together 2

For this post I am again going to take from some of the religious traditions that were shared on Oprah’s Belief series and then share some of my own ideas of how you could incorporate the ideas into your world. Enjoy.

Belief-1

Zen Buddhist Lotus Flower: In one part of the series you were able to catch a glimpse into the life and traditions of Zen Monks. They shared a special lantern celebration.  I did a little bit of my own research and found The Lotus Lantern Festival that celebrates Buddha’s birthday. It is traditionally called the Yeondeunghoe (Lotus Lantern Festival) and was originally more of a religious and national event, not like a festival.  Here is a link to give you an idea of what it is like. It looks amazing–lanterns take the form of fruits, animals…it looks beautiful. People can even make their own lanterns.

In Buddhism the lotus is a symbol of the true nature of beings, which remains unstained by the mud of the world and is realized through enlightenment. Traditionally the lotus (“padma’’) is a very important symbol in India and for Buddhism. The lotus has been ascribed with special meaning since the time of ancient Indian mythology.
The lotus flower grows in muddy water and rises above the surface to bloom with remarkable beauty. The flower closes and sinks underwater at night, to rise and open again at dawn. Untouched by impurity, the lotus symbolizes the purity of heart and mind.*taken from buddhachannel.tv      

My idea:   Create your own lotus lanterns with your family & then hang them somewhere special–above the dinner table, outside in a tree, etc.  Here is a Youtube with an idea of how to make them 

    This may be a great idea for a New Year celebration. You could create lanterns & even write something on them–hopes for the new year, gratitude for things from this previous year, dreams, desires, etc.

EP6_POLYPHONY_MAIS.02c56bb6353e

Bringing people together through music: In the series it explained how Israel is a place torn apart by religious separation, but luckily a music group was bringing together young people from different religions and having them work together to create something beautiful–music.      Music has a power all its own–it heals, it transcends, it liberates, it inspires, it brings people together. It is a heavenly gift that swells hearts here on earth.

My idea: Step out of your usual music comfort, listen to something completely new, maybe even foreign and see how you feel. Music can have positive and negative effects, so make sure you select genres that lift and inspire the soul. Also, step out of your music comfort by attending a local concert and experience the symphonic melodies first hand. Try it out and see how you feel.

EP7_ALEX_HONNOLD_FREE_SOLO_CLIMBER.3259ff2a29c2

Trust yourself: This part of the series I can honestly say, I was yelling at the television. I could not believe this guy would free climb (no ropes or anything) to such incredible heights. It was somewhat terrifying. You would definitely have to have tremendous faith in your personal belief in what you could do. One slip–you would be gone.

My idea: Do something that you have never tried or something that scares you. When you are able to accomplish a personal hurdle, you definitely feel you have reached a higher point for yourself. When you continue to trust your instincts, feelings, gut, desires, etc. you will be in a better personal place.

own-network-belief

Pray: Prayer was a huge message throughout the series. Whether it was the woman with cancer and was surrounded in a prayer circle to people praying in a sacred place, prayer beads to traditional dances that went on for days…prayer was shared in every culture and religion. It was a beautiful sentiment.  Prayer I believe holds a very strong gift, whether you pray alone or in a group, there are answers to what you need.

My idea: Give thanks in all you do. Hold a prayer in your heart. If you have a big decision or struggle you are facing, do not be afraid to ask others to help pray for you and your situation. Have faith and know you are not alone. I just read a great story this morning that shares some great examples of prayers being heard. Check it out—http://www.faithit.com/the-refs-said-if-he-points-at-god-again-hes-done-thats-when-his-sister-slipped-him-a-note/

Well, I hope these ideas help you to have a beautiful day.  Peace to you. -H

FOCUS

soft focus water lily macro

I just came across the video below that was done by filmmaker Louie Schwartzberg. It is beautiful and I highly suggest you watch it and share it.

I thought it had a great message—What is your FOCUS. What are you seeing within the framework of your life. There is always so much going on around us, but it is the details that make up our life, our visions, our dreams, our reality. So begin to truly see where your focus is. Focus on the beautiful, the lovely, the purest forms of joy, the things that bring you peace, the smallest details that make up your life. AND if you need to refocus—step back and reframe the pictures and images of your life, the directions, the daily details that need to be changed to move you towards the ultimate beauty of your life. It is waiting. It is all around you. You just have to look deeper and have a clearer focus.

http://www.oprah.com/video_embed.html?article_id=59460

Be Bold Video

Well, today I wanted to share with you a video that I made awhile ago, but I thought it would fit perfectly with the topic of BEING BOLD, not giving in to the inner critic, the voice that tries to keep us safe, to not play bigger. This video is full of people and their experiences of becoming unstoppable, pushing through the fears, the critics, themselves and striving to play big in their lives.

But, I think we also need to take into consideration the people around us, the agents, the editors, the family members, the friends, others outside of us that can also hold us back from playing big. If we begin to believe what others are saying or telling us to do, then we are not being true to ourself or the dream of playing a little bigger in the world. Here is a great story from an Oprah article that illustrates this point very well. Plus, you will see this person in my video as well. Smile. Smile. Enjoy.

Once Upon A Time, there was a girl named Taylor. When she sat down to eat lunch in her school cafeteria, the girls she’d once called friends stood up and moved to another table. They had cast Taylor out of their clique because instead of going to parties with them on weekends, she’d stay home and write songs on her guitar. The outsider landed a development deal with a record company and moved with her parents to Nashville. She would go on to become the first artist since the Beatles—and the only woman—to record three consecutive albums that spent six or more weeks at number one. Taylor Swift is still writing songs and once told a Nebraska audience, “What does it matter if you didn’t have any friends in high school when you’ve got 15,000 of your closest friends coming to see you in Omaha?”  -taken from Oprah, The Power of Quirk

Well, here is my video…enjoy. I hope you take the stories of inspiration to heart and begin to see that any dream is possible, in the face of adversity, when someone tells you No, questions your talent or rejects your ideas. Continue on, be bold…there is genius in it!!

A Special Tribute

when-you’re-on-a-journey-to-fulfill-yourI recently watched Oprah’s interview with Paulo Coelho, the writer of The Alchemist. I was drawn to this book years ago & read it while traveling through the beautiful Montana backcountry. The story of the Alchemist, to me, was a rich story of personal longing, finding deeper meaning and following one’s “Personal Legend.” While I was on my Montana trip I made a special purchase of a silver ring, that I still wear to this day, to remind me of the beautiful story held within the Alchemist…the story, the reminder to constantly be seeking my own ‘Personal Legend.’ If you have not read this book, I strongly suggest it. It is a true gift to your soul.

The-AlchemistI loved hearing the story of how this small book was a hidden treasure that took many years for people to find. This little book has a story of its own…Paulo had it published for the first time 25 years ago & it did not sell, so the publisher told Paulo he was done with the book. Paulo had written the book in two weeks & knew that it had something to share with the world, so he did not give up on this book. He had faith that doors would open & his book would find its way into the world. He found another publisher who was willing to take a chance on a book that had already been published and had few sales.

25 years later, over 65 million copies, and the most translated book…The Alchemist has won over the hearts of the world. Thank you Paulo. Thank you for a sweet gift that has touched many.

 

 

IMG_2031After the Oprah interview their was a sweet movie short that was shown & I wanted to share it with you…in the alchemist the main character is a shepherd boy, so this short is a different kind of shepherd or ‘guardian.’ Enjoy.

My favorite line from the movie short…“We are often asked if we think they are happy, that question assumes that natures goal is happiness. Caring for animals has shown me a much deeper objective, which may apply to all living things, so this is my answer…I watch them care for something outside of themselves and that purposefulness creates contentment.”

I LOVE that. I hope this post has brought you a little contentment to you today. Peace to you.  -H