We Remember

I certainly remember where I was the day of 9/11 some 15 years ago. I still cannot believe how long ago that was, because when the memories come back it makes everything seem so recent.

This reminder gives me a few pointers for todays thoughts.

  • We never know when our time is up

We live each day out as we feel fit to do so, and we plan for the days ahead assuming they belong to us. In reality, the only time that belongs to us is this one right now. (Wait 5 seconds – ok that moment is gone) We have to live moment by moment because our future is not guaranteed. Even if someone wrote a contract that guaranteed you a sum of money or real estate – or whatever you want. Even that guarantee can be flawed.

  • We have to make the most f each moment

Because we don’t get a guarantee on tomorrow, I would say that is important to live each day as if it were our last. That doesn’t mean you have to go and max out your credit cards and do something completely crazy to make a statement. But it does mean you make each moment mean something, big or small. Or better yet, considering the Life of Heart process – make it mean something to someone else; after all, their last moments could be today and your mark on their life could change everything.

 

This has been A Life of Heart message for all those still moving on with life. Don’t give up, don’t lose sight, and keep going no matter what.

What is a Day???

A day is like any other day. It begins, has a middle, and always at the same exact time, it ends. So then, why does each day look different?

Reader: “Easy – because what we do makes the day different.”

This is somewhat true yes. What we do defines our days as, different. Don’t you think it is interesting though that we always say to each other some form of “Have a good day” when we depart?

A day is just a day like any other day. But we, the people, make the day what it is.

“Are you having a good day?” This question isn’t really the correct question. Shouldn’t we instead ask, “Are you enjoying your day?”

After all the day itself does not have emotion, it does not care what happens or with whom, it merely counts down the hours and minutes until it can start all over again.

A Life of Heart is about using the day to its fullest potential. Meaning, you use yourself to the fullest potential so that when someone asks you “are you enjoying your day?” You can simply respond with “yes, my day is going very well – thank you.” The original question revolves around our feelings. If we are not feeling good, or our mood is altered we can respond with “no, I’m not having a good day.” Most people will ask why, and then we go on to explain ourselves. However, if we make our day instead revolve around our efforts and work towards our dreams, our answers can be very different.

Instead of answering based upon our feelings we have answered based on our actions. This can drive us to do more, be more, achieve more…even if only a little at a time.

 

So…Are you enjoying your day? I know I am!

 

Use your Heart to help

Hello, everyone!

This weekend was Labor Day weekend! Usually, this relates to a lot of family and friends getting together with some good food and fun games. Perhaps if you live by certain amenities, you can all go and enjoy those together too. If you’re really fortunate, you might even live by the ocean or a Lake that you can enjoy. I don’t know about you, but where I was the weather was absolutely amazing this we

I don’t know about you, but where I was the weather was absolutely amazing this weekend, and I could not have asked for anything better.

So what is a guy to do with this long weekend? As I wrote in the title, occasionally I like to “Take a little time”. Not just with family, but specifically to volunteer some time and talent to help benefit other people. I got the pleasure of attending a Family Camp at a local Camp and bring along with me my drumset. For the time I was there each morning, and each evening I got to play music with a few others – and during the day give drum lessons to the kids (and adults) that were enjoying the Family Camp.

This is absolutely one of my favorite ways to volunteer because it doesn’t really feel like volunteer work. I feel like there is a misunderstanding when it comes to the topic of “volunteering”. Even I, at one point, thought of volunteer work as something that needed to be boring, or difficult, and definitely not enjoyable. But through the years I have opened my mind up to different types of volunteer work and realized that the only reason something was boring was because I chose to believe that.

Now I want to encourage you. “A Life of Heart” as I have said in my book and videos isn’t just about gaining for yourself, and volunteering for something you enjoy doing (a labor of love). You can truly express this Life of Heart lifestyle that changes you on the inside. And if you are really brave, next time you get the opportunity to help others, try doing something new that might be outside your comfort zone, this will not only open your eyes to a different perspective but also challenge you to grow.

Until next time!

Don’t Waste My Time

There is no doubt in my mind, that time is one of our most prized possessions – and yet it’s not even ours to hold onto.

As of late, I have had some time to myself while the family is away. It made me realize how much time just slips through our fingers when we think about what we want to do with our day. That is, assuming our day hasn’t already been pre-planned out for us. Get the baby changed and fed, take the dogs out, get to work, have that meeting, get home, make dinner, do some housework, take a shower – oh look, it’s time for bed.

That is normally what it looks like for a lot of us, this house included. But as I said, I have had the house to myself for a little while and it makes me really step back and evaluate the day. I understand that some of the things we do cannot be changed. Certain things just have to happen, if I don’t take care of the baby – that would be bad, I get that! But what about the time that I choose for myself? What am I ultimately deciding to do with my free time? (Assuming at this point there is any.)

Time management has always been a struggle unless you know the value of your time. Similar to knowing the value of your money which I believe to be more on the lines of valuing what you spend your money on; time is pretty much the same. Valuing what you spend your time on makes you realize the value of time itself. For example, yesterday I planned on cleaning up my office (much needed I assure you) and then finish editing one of my books so I can send it back to the publisher. I had it in my head that this was going to take a while. But the reality of not having anyone else around and minimal distractions, this didn’t take as long as I expected. Which was awesome! I suddenly find myself pondering what else I can do with my day. Don’t get me wrong, I still have some laundry to catch up on and minimal things like that, but the picture view is I have a lot of time on my hands today.

So in light of never having enough time, I think I am going to take some time. A Life of Heart challenges you to push toward a goal or objective, but it is still important to remember to rest…take a breath…re-focus your mind and energy – and then power on!

So with that being said, I am going to take my own advice! Goodbye!

 

Will You Dance With Me?

Why is it that when we go to a wedding, we always look forward to the couples dance? Not the dance for just anyone, but the dance that lets couples show off how long they have been married.

Recently, my wife and I were at a wedding – we had a great time and were surrounded by friendly faces of people we know and even people we did not know. But of course, it came time for the dances. The usual dances occurred with the bride and groom, the parents and even the wedding party; but then the crowd got to participate. Ah yes, the couples dance. This time, my wife and I got to stay on a little bit longer because we are at the 10-year mark. Happy and proud, we entered the dance floor and as I looked around me, I noticed something probably that I have seen before, but only truly absorbed this time. We were surrounded by mostly older couples, and I mean couples in their 70’s, 80’s – maybe higher?

At the end of the dance,there was one couple remaining. (I’m sure the knew they would be the last couple too). The DJ came over to them and asked the all being question that everyone seemed to stop and listen too. “What is the secret to your long marriage together?” Everyone seemingly zoomed in on the man that was taking the microphone with bated breath waiting to find out what the secret was. On the edge of our seats, or leaning forward as we stood, the man began to talk. And we heard nothing. Ha! I don’t know if it was technical difficulties, or if he just wasn’t speaking up enough but unless you were right there next to him you couldn’t really tell what he was saying. Talk about a letdown!

How interesting this was. It was in that moment I realized that everyone in the room wanted to know the secret. Do not fret though because the honest truth is this…

There is no Secret to a long and happy marriage!

Sadly, this is true. The truth of a healthy and long marriage is a combination of many attributes coming from both sides. It’s not up to one person in the relationship to make it work. It isn’t one person’ responsibility to make everything right. So if I had to narrow it down to just one thing, or a couple of things that tie together nicely, I think it would be this:

You need to know how to Forgive. It does not matter who you are, where you have been, or what you have done. You NEED to learn how to forgive. I made the word “need” in all caps, but the real key word is “learn“. Forgiveness is a learned skill over time. The reason for this is because we hold on to things too tightly. And I don’t just mean with the person we love when they wrong you and make you feel angry or sad. I also mean that we all hold on to things too tightly with ourselves, and that is where it starts. You have to FIRST learn to forgive yourself. This takes time because we generally feel very guilty about what we have done, or maybe didn’t do. And the best way to achieve this is to ask for forgiveness of yourself and from the person you wronged. The guilt inside you makes you not able to forgive yourself because you still feel like the other person is upset with you – and maybe they still are. But until you ask, you will never know. Be specific. Don’t just say I apologize for what I have done – name the things you have done, own them for yourself. Even if in the end the other person says “no, I can’t forgive you yet”, you can at least then move on to forgive yourself.

As time goes by, you can then forgive the other person that has wronged you. And if they still haven’t forgiven you – don’t worry. (Don’t worry? This guy is nuts!) I assure you. I am not always nuts. The reason I say not to worry is because sooner or later, the other person will see the tension lifted from you. The guilt has evaporated over time, and you are no longer acting like the same person you once were. If you haven’t caught on yet, here is the amazing thing about forgiveness. If you can forgive, you have helped yourself. Forgiveness free’ the person who is forgiving. In our minds we say we are helping the other person because we forgive them, but really we are freeing ourselves from having to hold on to the grudge.

No, I don’t think there is a huge secret out there that makes couples stay together forever. But I do truly believe that forgiveness is at the Heart of the whole thing.

All about that Heart

The heart is an interesting thing. Physically it keeps us alive, beating all day long without ever stopping for a break. We take for granted the fact that it just goes and goes, and we can just keep on living. Emotionally it can keep us happy and float on cloud 9, but it can also feel like it is killing us from the inside out. Of course, when I say that, I am speaking to emotions that we process.

We all know too well the ups and downs of the heart and what it can do to us. But there are some of us out there that can master these feelings that tend to master us. The concept of being in control of yourself has come with the title of being mature, above the curve, masterful. I believe anyone can be and feel this way.

The books I am writing are for the individual and also for the couple that wants to stay together for the long haul. But for those that desire this outcome, first, we must understand ourselves and what it takes to become the emotionally mature person we so desperately want to become. Our hearts need to be fine tuned and closely watched over. If we don’t do this, we leave ourselves wide open to every kind of attack possible. Even the thief will show themselves as a friendly stranger until your back is turned and then the unthinkable happens; your heart is stolen. I realize this sounds sad and depressing, and in some ways, I think it should. This is a reality we all deal with and have experienced once or more times in our own lives.

It is not correct to put up walls so that no one can get to our heart. But it does make sense to become wise with what our hearts can handle. Becoming a master of your own emotions allows you the chance to filter what can penetrate your heart, and what cannot. Thus, keeping you emotionally alive so that you can give your heart to those who deserve to have it.

 

These are my thoughts for today – nothing concrete, but thoughts that can cause you to think about yourself and what you take control of in your own life. If you start with your heart – who knows what else you might be a master of at the end of it all.