All Good is Hard, All Evil is Easy.


Today is a follow up on habits via Marc and Angel Chernoff’s excellent book: 1000+ Little Thing Happy Successful People Do Differently: Marc and Angel Hack Life. Using my write about the page you open up to formulae, we come to 30 Challenges for 30 Days of Growth.

The chapter begins with the following statement: Scientists have suggested that, with a little willpower, it takes roughly 30 days for a person to form a new habit. As with mastering anything new, the act of starting and getting beyond the preliminary stage where everything feels awkward is 80% of the battle. This is precisely why it’s important to make small positive changes every day over the course of at least a 30-day challenge. 

Marc then offers you 30 suggestions, here they are:

  1. Use words that encourage happiness
  2. Try one new thing every day.
  3. Perform one selfless act every day.
  4. Learn and practice one new skill every day.
  5. Teach someone something new every day.
  6. Dedicate an hour a day to something you are passionate about.
  7. Treat everyone nicely, even those who are rude to you.
  8. Concentrate on being positive at all times.
  9. Address and acknowledge the lesson in inconvenient situations.
  10. Pay attention and enjoy your life as it happens.
  11. Get rid of one thing a day for 30 days.
  12. Create something brand new in less than 30 days.
  13. Don’t tell a single lie for 30 days.
  14. Wake up 30 minutes early every morning.
  15. Ditch 3 bad habits for 30 days.
  16. Watch less than 30 minutes of TV every day.
  17. Define one long-term goal and work on it for an hour every day.
  18. Read one chapter of a good book every day.
  19. Every morning, watch or read something that inspires you.
  20. Do something every day after lunch that makes you laugh.
  21. Go alcohol and drug-free for 30 days.
  22. Exercise for 30 minutes every day for 30 days.
  23. Get uncomfortable and face a fear every day.
  24. Cook one brand new healthy recipe every day.
  25. Spend 10 minutes every evening reflecting on what went well.
  26. Have a conversation every day with someone you rarely do.
  27. Pay down debt and don’t create any new debt for 30 days.
  28. Let go of one relationship that constantly hurts you.
  29. Publicly forgive someone who deserves another chance.
  30. Document every day with one photograph and one paragraph.

We often use the excuse that I don’t know where to begin, what does society say about that: let’s have a look:

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1. Recently I walked across 8 Km of beach rocks, I have no sense of balance, I definitely grew from this situation.

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2. The challenges begin within, after all, you made them a challenge: This Time.

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3. The picture says it all.

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4. Ralph puts it in your face why we challenge ourselves: Growth.

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5. To spell words correctly.

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6. In your challenges lie all your meaningful accomplishments: One Life.

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7. One small step forward a day is all it takes.

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8. Your Gut Feelings, that is what you want to know, stop ignoring them: Gut Feeling.

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9. I think Ralph should be talking to his lawyers about the origin of Gail’s quote.

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10. It’s really saying shake off the limits, isn’t it.: No Limit.

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11. Stop playing small!!

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12. Marlen Esparza is an American boxer. In May 2012, she qualified to compete at the 2012 Olympics, becoming the first American woman to qualify for the Olympics in the first year that women’s boxing was an Olympic event. She won the bronze medal in the women’s flyweight division at the 2012 Olympics in London: You Can Do It.

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13. Me, Myself, I: Challenge them all.

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14. Set your controls for the heart of the Sun: Chandelier.

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15. And some worldly advice from big Tone to finish.

You can’t do all these challenges at once, but they will make for an inspired 2019. As you progress through these challenges remember personal growth is a slow, steady process. It can’t be rushed. You need to work on it gradually every day. There is ample time for you to be who you want to be in life. Don’t settle for less than what you think you deserve or less than you know you can be. Despite the struggles, you will face along the way, never give up on yourself. You’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, smarter than you think, and twice as capable as you have ever imagined.

Today’s playlist lies in the Hip Hop stadium with three offerings. We begin with Pia Toscano, then enter the stadium with Offset. Rock offerings from Boyce Avenue and Devo follow. Usher and Ice Cube make their entry and we complete with Australia’s own Sia: All Good is Hard, All Evil is Easy.

Remember to show Love and Respect to All, Everyone Included until we meet again, my dear friends:

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Don’t Let Anyone Else Hold The Pen!!


Back to Marc and Angel Chernoff for today’s blog, I stubbed my toe on their book 1000+ Little Things Happy Successful People Do Differently: Hit them Up… As is my practice when writing about a possibility I open the book to any page and voila, that is the subject for today. On page 139 is the heading “10 Ways to WRITE a Life Story Worth Living” appeared.

The chapter begins with the following words from Marc:

‘When writing the story of your life, don’t let anyone else hold the pen. Make conscious choices every day that align your actions with your values and your dreams. because the way you live each day is a sentence in the story of your life. Each day you make a choice as to whether the sentence ends in a period, a question mark, or an exclamation point.”

He then offers 10 ideas for writing a life story worth living:

  1. Find a Passion that makes you come alive.
  2. Work hard on that Passion.
  3. Live happily in your own way.
  4. Change your path when you must, but keep moving forward.
  5. When the going gets rough, keep fighting.
  6. Let go of the past and live consciously in the future.
  7. Embrace new ideas, lessons, and challenges.
  8. Appreciate the little things in life that mean a lot.
  9. Live honourably through kindness.
  10. Spend quality time with people you love.

What a beautiful, inspiring list, I’m willing to take it on. Now lets have a look at what the world has said about writing your own story, let’s take that journey:

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1. This beautiful image could be included on your vision board.

 

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2. Not all testimony is in the negative: when you have the feeling your words can make a difference, speak them: Song for Someone.

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3. Yes, You, the unique human being you are. Go on, you can do it.

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4. Mine says I am an Interculturalist: Love and Respect for All, Everyone included. Over to You: Live your Story.

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5. As Helen says, It will not always be easy. As Marc’s point 5 says, keep fighting during these time. Each little step makes a difference.

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6. To my new friend Josie, you are editing at the moment, your writing is magnificent: Write your Story.

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7. Excitement to me is covered in the expression Lolly Gobble Bliss Bombs.

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8. Ready, Set Write!!!: So Much Magnificence.

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9. Even the stars don’t necessarily have great stories. Greta was one of Hollywood’s shining lights in her time.

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10. And how could we leave out Deepak when writing about our lives: Change Your Life.

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11. Or Brene!!!

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12. 我是, Wer bin Ich, qui suis-je, ko wai Ahau, kas aš esu, هستم: Who I am.

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13. We all have friends we can do this with: don’t be stingy.

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14. To each of our glorious adventures: Yay!!!: This Is Me.

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15. And finally, some blank pages for you.

I will finish with some more words from Marc and Angel:

‘If you live honourably, no matter how old you get, you’ll never lose your beauty; it will gradually shift from your face to your heart. And remember, there is no better exercise for the heart than reaching out and holding the hand of someone in need.’

Today’s playlist even contains both types of music, County and Western. We begin with U2. Then to the European continent for Auli’i Cravalho and Francesca Battistelli. I just had to put in Miten and Deva Premal’s song about magnificence. Who would have thought I would ever include a Little Mix song, but here one is. Jessica Andrews is next and we complete with the cast of the Greatest Showman: Remember, Don’t Let Anyone Else Hold The Pen.

So remember to show Love and Respect for All, Everyone Included until next time we meet, my dear friends:

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Paradise has never been about Places!!


Not about a book this time, it’s about an experience. On the weekend I attended Collective Potential’s People on Purpose retreat: Here’s their contact page. My friend Emeli, the facilitator had a surprise for us on Saturday night, it would test my physical and trust issues to the Nth degree. I had to let my fears of walking down any slight slope when I inherited when I fell down an escalator drunk at the age of 18, a long time to hold onto something seeing I am now 64, but my balance has been shot ever since.

I am one of the worlds great givers, even having the nom de plume, The World’s Greatest Volunteer, but am sometimes naff at receiving, I realise there is a profound cost to this, but have trained myself harshly from the I am Unlovable shadow world.

What I learned was the power of the tribe, of true connection, can have people do things that they had told themselves they were incapable of. What has the world said about the power of connection over the decades, let’s have a look:

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1. Number one spot to Brene, the Queen of Vulnerability.

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2. I love the quote: You can get a kiss easily enough, having sex isn’t that hard really, but finding those people that touch your soul, that’s another thing: Listen To Your Heart.

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3. Relationship 101.

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4. Find Your Others: People Help the People.

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5. Actions not words, true connections not Roses…

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6. As James, the financial planner on the retreat said, you do not change your habits overnight, this is especially true in relationships: Time after Time.

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7. For the Barbara De Angelis fan on the retreat.

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8. I was the elder at 64, there were lots in their 20’s and 30’s, even a teenager I think: Human.

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9. Albert was born in the 18th Century, still relevant today.

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10. Too me this is more profound in shared experience: Shared Experiences.

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11. They are your weirdo’s after all.

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12. Has to slip in Emeli’s favourite word: Purpose: Love Connection.

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13. I think I did this with someone on the weekend, we don’t meet them that often, Emeli was one for me, so glad to meet another.

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14. I  have had these conversations, and they have gone for days: Fresh.

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15. Nada!!!

So go out there and find your others, allow true connection in your life, Collective Potential is a great place to start if you are new to the journey.

The playlist today has some certifiable classics in it: We begin with Roxette, then Birdy’s anthem to People. One of my top ten songs by Cyndi Lauper, then the bass tones of Rag and Bone Man. An unknown electronic classic by Menog. And what would a love connection playlist be without some Bollywood by Shubham Tiwari and some disco to finish off by Kool and the Gang…

Remember to show Love and Respect for All, Everyone Included until we meet again, my dear friends.

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Breath in Experience, Breath out Poetry.


I recently attended the most transformational training week of my youthful 64 years. It is commonly known as ISTA, short for the International School of Temple Arts: Here’s the Link. In my over 350 blogs I normally write about books on a possibility, one of the other participants asked me, You aren’t going to write about this, are you? As one of the agreements is to only share your experiences, here I go.

Some background from the source:

We live at a unique and critical time on earth. At the same time as we are faced with incredible challenges to the survival of the diversity of life and consciousness on our planet, we are experiencing an incredible awakening of human potential. Not only are new energies emerging but for the first time in history, the wisdom heritage of all our cultures and traditions is available for integration just as it is most needed.

There have always been temples and mystery schools on earth where the deep teachings on sexual and spiritual wisdom were practised, developed and taught. These centres were often the hidden cause for the advancement of civilizations. Now we have a global civilization and these temples are once again emerging into the light, blossoming like chakras and Nadi points as the light body of the earth is awakened and energized.

So what has society said about transformational experiences over the years, lets take that journey:

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1. What our logical mind wants to do almost instantly, explain it away.

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2. We all took the opportunities that were offered during the week to the levels our identity would allow a change in: Changes.

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3. I received the gifts of Massive trust and energy from the Earth as I walk on this new planet.

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4. The ISTA community, you join after spending a week in the field. Prior to that your already I have done ISTA friends will just hug you when you tell them you are going to do it: You Belong With Me.

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5. To me, my priceless moment was witnessing a process and looking out over the field and realising there was nothing wrong going on, just total trust.

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6. One of my top ten, have learnt so much off this beautiful spirit: Let It Go.

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7. Integration time.

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8. Albert Camus was a French philosopher, author, and journalist. His views contributed to the rise of the philosophy known as absurdism. He wrote in his essay The Rebel that his whole life was devoted to opposing the philosophy of nihilism while still delving deeply into individual freedom. He won the Nobel Prize in Literature at the age of 44 in 1957, the second youngest recipient in history: Going Under.

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9. Much easier after ISTA.

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10. Certainly, the journey I took has me much closer to this place: I Was Here.

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11. I am so looking forward to where this new trust and energy will take me, and I don’t really care that I don’t know.

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12. Back to ancient China for this one, so many of our hearts are now travelling this path: Listen to Your Heart.

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13. And the ability of our skilled facilitators, Stephanie, Sean and Elaine.

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14. Could my new energy take me here, Who Knows: Africa.

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15. And we certainly did in that beautiful space known as the ISTA field.

The two main takeaways I received are an increase in my trust of myself and others to the Nth degree and an energy emanating from the earth that feels volcanic in nature and a sense I do not know what my future will be, and that’s a great thing.

Today’s playlist has some classic sings and songs. We begin with Mr David Bowie then one of the great pop divas Taylor Swift. A musical number from Frozen follows, then some great rock from Evanescence and her highness Beyonce. Two older memories from Roxette and Toto close out the list: Breathe in Experience, Breathe out Poetry. 

Remember to show Love and Respect for All, Everyone Included until we meet again, my dear friends.

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Now a Soft Kiss.


I am attending a retreat next weekend organised by my friend and Anam Cara Emeli Paulo via her self-development company Collective Potential: Check them out here. One of her heroes is Joseph Campbell so I thought to revisit one of his books Pathways to Bliss: Get It Here.

Joseph Campbell famously defined myth as “other people’s religion.” But he also said that one of the basic functions of myth is to help each individual through the journey of life, providing a sort of travel guide or map to reach fulfilment — or, as he called it, bliss. For Campbell, many of the world’s most powerful myths support the individual’s heroic path toward bliss. In Pathways to Bliss, Campbell examines this personal, psychological side of myth.

In this highly enjoyable book, Campbell says: “There are something like 18 billion cells in the brain alone. There are no two brains alike; there are no two hands alike; there are no two human beings alike. You can take your instructions and your guidance from others, but you must find your own path.” Defining it as BLISS = THE TRANSCENDENT WISDOM WITHIN YOU – “Your bliss can guide you to that transcendent mystery because bliss is the welling up of the energy of the transcendent wisdom within you. So when the bliss cuts off, you know that you’ve cut off the welling up; try to find it again.”

So how does the world look at Bliss, lets take that journey:

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1. Lisa starts her webpage as follows, Dear Highly Sensitive Soul, Everything happens for a reason, I am so glad you have found yourself here! Let me remind you how special and unique you are AND that there is absolutely nothing wrong with you! I know that being a Highly Sensitive Soul can sometimes feel like a curse, but in reality, it’s a blessing. You just need to know how to navigate your way through a world that doesn’t always understand what it means to feel things so deeply.

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2. Make sure your daily reality is not too far from your bliss: From Little Things.

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3. Probably Josephs most famous quote.

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4. the ultimate form of bliss, to know self-love and love for another: All of You.

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5. Not what I hold bliss to be, at all.

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6. the opposite of bliss: Ignorance.

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7. Thomas Gray was an English poet, letter-writer, classical scholar, and professor at Pembroke College, Cambridge. He is widely known for his Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard, published in 1751.

Gray was an extremely self-critical writer who published only 13 poems in his lifetime, despite being extremely popular. He was even offered the position of Poet Laureate in 1757, though he declined.

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8. If you are looking out there for it, go back, wrong way: Baby It’s You.

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9. Shadow and Light, they travel together.

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10. Think I found this opportunity this weekend: Soul Kind of Feeling.

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11. Appears to be getting harder and harder to do in these Tinder driven times.

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12. All three spiritual fields please: Mind, Body and Soul.

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13. The definition of Lolly Gobble Bliss Bombs.

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14. 4 great blissful quotes: Safety Dance.

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15. The right ones will open.

LIFE IS CALLING  but “When the call isn’t answered, you experience a kind of drying up and a sense of life lost.” Life is calling. Are you answering? If not, beware. No matter how much you try to numb yourself, the pain’s not going away. Not till you step up and answer the call. Then? Well, then God’s on the line and flowing through you. Enter: Bliss, Enthusiasm, all the things you want but are afraid you may not get so you keep on doing the same ‘ol, same ‘ol. 🙂 * ring ring * * ring ring * PICK UP, already! 🙂

Some great tracks today. We begin with Missy Higgins and Paul Kelly, followed by a John Legend classic. Then a Paramore super hit, then Beyonce. Over to our more obscure numbers, a great Aussie band The Dynamic Hepnotics, then a re-released obscurity by The Flaming Ember. We finish off with Men Without Hats with their dance ditty: Now a Soft Kiss.

Remember to spread Love and Respect for All, Everybody Included until next time we meet, my dear friends.

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If you are Attentive, You Will See It!!


I love 365-day quote books, and here is one of my favourites: The Golden Present – Daily Inspirational Readings BY SRI SWAMI SATCHIDANANDA – Get It Here.

These daily inspirational readings contain Swami Satchidananda’s teachings on the spiritual life” how to serve others and realize peace, truth, and union with the divine. Culled from twenty-five years of lectures to spiritual seekers in the West and the East, these readings are expressed with the simplicity and authority of one who speaks from his own experience. What is purity of heart? Here are two of my favourites: 

“What you sow you reap. Don’t worry about the future and don’t worry about the past. A great thinker once said the past and the future are not even visible. But what is visible? The golden present. Think of the golden present, sow what is necessary, what is right. Sow good thoughts, sow good deeds, and I am sure you will reap good fruits. There is no question about it. What you do comes back to you. What you sow, you reap. So do the right thing in the present, and don’t worry about the future. The people who worry about the future miss the present as well.”

“Life must be a challenge. Only then is it exciting. In an obstacle race, you are forced to surmount all the obstacles: to jump over the hurdles, go through the barrels, crawl under the rugs, climb over walls. What would happen if, to avoid all that, you went around all the obstacles and asked for the winner’s cup? Would they give it to you? No. They would say, “You must go back and face all the obstacles.” … Make your life as exciting as possible, but always think of it as fun. The adversities, as well as the harmony, should be enjoyable. Don’t become sober and morose and have a castor oil face in the name of spirituality. Just be happy. Jump with joy. Even if you make a mistake, say, “Hey, I did this? Great! What a wonderful lesson I learned!” If you really want to, you can make everything fun.”

So what is your Golden Present, for that matter what is societies, lets have a look:

 

1. This is the door you are meant to walk through.

2. Its where Self Love lives: Living In The Moment.

 

3. The greatest gift you can give to the other person in the conversation.

 

4. We travel back to the 17th Century for this piece of sage advice. Goethe still has an Institute named after him today: Feel This Moment.

5. Fully, Fully, Fully.

6. Touch Life Deeply, Yum!! : Truly, Madly, Deeply.

7. No Magic here.

8. But here there is: Magic.

9. The present of presence.

10. Time to Wake Up: Wake Me Up.

11. Are you touching Yours?

12. In the Now 101: The Air That I Breathe,

13. That reawakes your brilliance.

14. Nature does it for me: Spirit Bird.

15. And we finish with a cute horse quote: because we can, it’s up to us, it’s our time.

Sri says “If you make mistakes it doesn’t matter. Make mistakes and learn. The best teachers are your own mistakes. You learn even faster by your mistakes. Once I was at a conference with the great modern scientist Buckminster Fuller. He stood up and said, “Friends, forget about all the ‘Do this. Don’t do that’ business. Commit as many mistakes as possible, as soon as possible. You’ll become great.” It’s true. Every failure is a stepping stone. Remember, though, that you can’t use the same stone for each step. Every step should be on a new stone. That means you shouldn’t keep on making the same mistakes. Learn well from each one. The problem with many people is that they commit the same mistake over and over. Even so, they will eventually learn from their mistake and move on. Experience is the best teacher.”

Today’s playlist contains some beautiful songs. We begin with Jason Mraz, then Pitbull & Christina Aguilera. Savage Garden, Sia and Avicii fill the middle up. We return to the 60’s with The Hollies and complete with Xavier Rudd’s magnificent anthem to the soul: If You Are Attentive, You Will See It.

Love and Respect for All, Everyone Included until next we meet, my dear friends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To the World, You might be Just One Person!!


I received a reply to the message from the woman I say I am in love with, I feel incredibly happy with this, she has been overseas the past six months. At the moment I am reading a book called Love 2.0 by Barbara Fredrickson which redefines our ability to feel the ultimate emotion: Get It Here.

We all know love matters, but in this groundbreaking book positive emotions expert Barbara Fredrickson shows us how much. Even more than happiness and optimism, love holds the key to improving our mental and physical health as well as lengthening our lives. Using research from her own lab, Fredrickson redefines love not as a stable behemoth, but as micro-moments of connection between people–even strangers. She demonstrates that our capacity for experiencing love can be measured and strengthened in ways that improve our health and longevity.

Ready for our new, upgraded definition of love? Love 1.0 = The emotion you feel for your “soul mate” or kids or family; what we hear about on the radio, etc. Love 2.0? Love 2.0 is ubiquitous. It’s that “micro-moment of warmth and connection that you share with another living being.” It’s what Barbara describes as “positivity resonance.”  Love is found in those TINY moments—the micro-moments—in which we are truly present, sharing a positive experience with someone. When that happens, our brains and bodies synchronize in truly stunning ways. Sprinkle in some mutual care for the others’ well being and you have positivity resonance—aka Love. What’s exciting about this upgraded version of love is that it’s not limited to our most intimate relationships (yet, very importantly, can be practised most frequently within them—something I’ve done a bunch of times since picking up the book yesterday). When we allow ourselves to open up to this possibility, we can create more of this positivity resonance with others and experience the extraordinary gains in health and happiness that go with practising this supreme emotion.

So how do we as humans define love, here are a few of my favourite takes at it:

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1. Imagine if we were in contact with those micro-moments of love 24/7. It would transform my life for certain.

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2. Imagine if you glimpsed it every day, it would be blissful: A Slice of Heaven. 

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3. And this is what drops away.

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4. And your micro-moment mission is to…: When You Believe.

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5. Not really a choice is it?

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6. And you, and you, and you, and you…: Better Together.

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7. One never knows what those micro-moments of connection can turn into.

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8. Positivity resonance at some times, our greatest fears at others, it is our time to choose: How Deep Is Your Love.

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9. Not really an example of Love 2.0, but I had to fit the bard in somewhere.

 

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10. Definitely possible in both areas of love, one and two: Soul Shakedown Party.

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11. All of the emotions come with Love.

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12. Love is a two-way street: Give Love.

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13. But we always have a favourite.

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14. And then, time for some Rumi: I Love You for What You Are.

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15. And from the Love Prince, Bob Marley comes how to achieve Love 2.0.

Barbara introduces us to the fact that micro-moments of love are created by and result in changes in three main biological characters: your brain, oxytocin, and your vagus nerve. As she says: “Put simply, your body was designed for love, and to benefit from loving.”

Very briefly, when we have positivity resonance, our brains synchronize in astonishing ways. This “neural synchrony” or “neural coupling” is produced as we attune to the individual(s) with whom we’re interacting. Oxytocin, the “love hormone” is, apparently, more appropriately identified as a neuropeptide because it shows up not just in our bodies but also in our brains. Barbara talks about some fascinating research on how increasing levels of oxytocin increase trust and cooperation. Then we get to Vagus. Our vagus nerve is our tenth cranial nerve. “It emerges from your brain stem deep within your skull and, although it makes multiple stops at your various internal organs, perhaps most significantly it connects your brain to your heart.” Hmmm… A physical, biological component of our bodies that connects our brain to our hearts? I’m listening! The short story here: As per all the benefits articulated above, Optimizing our vagus nerve’s functioning is a good idea. Good news is: our “vagal tone” can be developed much like our “muscle tone.” It just takes practice. We’re almost ready for those practices. First, desire.

Today’s playlist begins across the trough from my homeland, for all you others, that’s slang for New Zealand with Dave Dobbyn, then Whitney. A few rocky numbers follow with Jack Johnson, Calvin Harris and Bob Marley. The penultimate number is some soul from Andy Grammer featuring Lunchmoney Lewis, finishing with a Bollywood masterclass.

Love and Respect for All, Everyone Included until we next meet, my dear friends:

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