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:

Self Love 6

We are What we Repeatedly Do!!


Have you heard of James Clear, he wrote the insightful book on getting done what you want to called – Atomic Habits An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones: Get it Here, Free Shipping Worldwide.

People think when you want to change your life, you need to think big. But world-renowned habits expert James Clear has discovered another way. He knows that real change comes from the compound effect of hundreds of small decisions – doing two push-ups a day, waking up five minutes early, or holding a single short phone call.

He calls them atomic habits.

In this ground-breaking book, Clears reveals exactly how these minuscule changes can grow into such life-altering outcomes. He uncovers a handful of simple life hacks (the forgotten art of Habit Stacking, the unexpected power of the Two Minute Rule, or the trick to entering the Goldilocks Zone), and delves into cutting-edge psychology and neuroscience to explain why they matter. Along the way, he tells inspiring stories of Olympic gold medalists, leading CEOs, and distinguished scientists who have used the science of tiny habits to stay productive, motivated, and happy.

These small changes will have a revolutionary effect on your career, your relationships, and your life.

He sums it up with the following statement:

“If you find yourself struggling to build a good habit or break a bad one, it is not because you have lost your ability to improve. It is often because you have not yet crossed the Plateau of Latent Potential. Complaining about not achieving success despite working hard is like complaining about an ice cube not melting when you heated it from twenty-five to thirty-one degrees. Your work was not wasted; it is just being stored. All the action happens at thirty-two degrees. When you finally break through the Plateau of Latent Potential, people will call it an overnight success. … Mastery requires patience. The San Antonio Spurs, one of the most successful teams in NBA history, has a quote from social reformer Jacob Riis hanging in their locker room: ‘When nothing seems to help, I go and look at a stonecutter hammering away at his rock, perhaps a hundred times without as much as a crack showing in it. Yet at the hundred and first blow, it will split in two, and I know it was not that last blow that did it—but all that had gone before.’”

So how are you with creating good habits, then again how is the planet, let’s have a look.

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1. Blessed may your day be if you take this on.

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2. What a simple action per day can do for your future: The Seven Habits.

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3. It’s not the peak experiences that make the ultimate difference, It’s what you do after them when it comes to light.

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4. The first ingredient in a brand new future: Have It All.

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5. Napoleon Hill is the grandfather of the self-development movement, He is known best for his book Think and Grow Rich (1937) which is among the 10 best selling self-help books of all time.

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6. Have we been listening, Aristotle who made this statement was born in 384 BC: This is How We Do.

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7. What’s your favourite addiction, is it good or bad for you?

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8. You wake up one day and feel really motivated. But that will not produce the result, taking up the habit of what you were motivated about is where the answer lies: Burn Bright.

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9. Sixty a day of these for ten years then I became a marathon runner.

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10. Self Love will help you walk this path: Love Myself.

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11. They are also known as breakthroughs.

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12. Make your destiny a grand one, in whichever way that shows up for you: High Hopes.

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13. Step one, write a bad poem, paint a crap portrait, just begin a new habit today.

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14. Maya is one of my top ten on the internet: Yum: And Still I Rise.

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15. Oops, seems they left out a bit in Aristotle’s quote at number Six, makes more sense now.

How to Create a Good Habit and then How to Break a Bad Habit The 1st law (Cue) Make it obvious. Make it invisible. The 2nd law (Craving) Make it attractive. Make it unattractive. The 3rd law (Response) Make it easy. Make it difficult. The 4th law (Reward) Make it satisfying. Make it unsatisfying. This seems like it would be simple enough to do , but with the busyness, we fill our life up with these days, maybe not so, time to unclutter and allow space for some new good habits.

The playlist today is full of pop diva songs of possibility: We begin with Jannah Bolin, then Jason Mraz. Three great pop divas follow: Kate Perry, Natalie Grant and Hailee Steinfeld. Then a bit of Electronica from Panic at the Disco finishing with some sage wisdom from Maya Angelou. Enjoy: We are What We Repeatedly Do.

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

SacredLove6

 

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.

selflove3

There is no Elevator to Success!!!


I was having a deep and meaningful conversation with a friend into what prevents us from meeting our goals which made me think of Angela Lee Duckworth’s great book Grit: Why Passion and Resilience are the Secrets to Success: Get It Here. 

Here are some great lines from the book: 

“What I mean by a passion is not just that you have something you care about. What I mean is that you care about the same ultimate goal in an abiding, loyal, steady way. You are not capricious. Each day, you wake up thinking of the questions you fell asleep thinking about. You are, in a sense, pointing in the same direction, ever eager to take even the smallest step forward than to take a step to the side, toward some other destination. At the extreme, one might call your focus obsessive. Most of your actions derive their significance from their allegiance to your ultimate concern, your life philosophy. You have your priorities in order.”

“Why were the highly accomplished so dogged in their pursuits? For most, there was no realistic expectation of ever catching up to their ambitions. In their own eyes, they were never good enough. They were the opposite of complacent. And yet, in a very real sense, they were satisfied with being unsatisfied. Each was chasing something of unparalleled interest and importance, and it was the chase— as much as the capture—that was gratifying. Even if some of the things they had to do were boring, or frustrating, or even painful, they wouldn’t dream of giving up. Their passion was enduring.

In sum, no matter the domain, the highly successful had a kind of ferocious determination that played out in two ways. First, these exemplars were unusually resilient and hardworking. Second, they knew in a very, very deep way what it was they wanted. They not only had determination, but they also had direction.

It was this combination of passion and perseverance that made high achievers special. In a word, they had grit.”

How does the world navigate this thing called Grit: Lets take that journey:

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1. John Ortberg is an evangelical Christian author, speaker, and senior pastor of Menlo Church in Menlo Park, California. One of his publications, The Life You’ve Always Wanted, has sold more than 500,000 copies.

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2. Grit is a lifetime hobby: Work It.

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3. John says give peace a chance, Wayne not Lennon.

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4. You can have it all – that’s what we think as kids, unfortunately, this is taken away from us in our school years: You can Have It All.

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5. I am ……………

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6. Come across to the other side, its fun over here: On the Dark Side.

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7. Passion and Perseverance – Fuck Yeah!!!

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8. Minna Thomas Antrim was an American writer. She is famous for the quote “Experience is a great teacher, but she sends in terrific bills.” She was also well known for her collection of toasts: Say Something.

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9. Way back to the 18th Century and Ralph Waldo Emerson for part of the recipe of Grit.

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10. Thrusting, now that takes Grit: Call on Me.

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11. I agree with Brene, possibly the bravest thing we will ever do.

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12. Never give Up in search of your dreams: Tough Lover.

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13. Ovid, way back in the times of the Roman Emperor was known as a poet of Love.

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14. Jon Gordon, known for his earth-shattering book, The Energy Bus, which is said about: “If you want to fuel your family, your career, your team, and your organization with spirit read this book. Jon’s energy and advice will leap off the page and help you cultivate positive energy in everything you do—and you will make the world a better place for your having been here: We Shall Overcome.

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15. How often are you unyielding, what does it take?

“In fact, when people drop out of things, they do so for a reason. Actually, they do so for different reasons. Any of the following four thoughts might go through your head right before you quit what you’re doing:

‘I’m bored.’
‘The effort isn’t worth it.’
‘This isn’t important to me.’
‘I can’t do this, so I might as well give up.’

There’s nothing wrong—morally or otherwise—with thoughts like these. As I tried to show in this chapter, paragons of grit quit goals, too. But the higher the level of the goal in question, the more stubborn they are about seeing it through. Most important, paragons of grit don’t swap compasses: when it comes to the one, the singularly important aim that guides almost everything else they do, the very gritty tend not to utter the statements above. …

 

Together, the research reveals the psychological assets that mature paragons of grit have in common. There are four. They counter each of the buzz-killers listed above, and they tend to develop, over the years, in a particular order.” They are Interest + Practice + Purpose + Hope.

The playlist today contains quite a few Pop divas: We begin with Rihanna and Drake, Then some rock and roll from Yo Lo Tengo and Eddie and the Cruisers. Two Christina Aguilera tracks are intersected by Eric Prydz and we complete with some wise words from Martin Luther King: There is No Elevator to Success. 

Remember to provide Love and Respect for All, Everbody Included until we next meet, my dear friends.

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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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