Monday, March 28, 2011

Making Better Decisions

Making Better Decisions

Pay It Forward: Starting next month I will be volunteering my time at Roberta's House as a Grief and Loss dialogue facilitator. Roberta's House is a safe place where children, teens and adults discover that they are not alone in their grief and engage in mutual help. Children with their families share their feelings, memories and experiences in an atmosphere of acceptance with the love and support of trained volunteers.  
Roberta's house volunteers with professional staff assist children, teens and adults on how to experience and express their feelings safely and in a healthy manner. Working through the necessary grief task and understanding the essential needs of a child's grief allow families to support each other and communicate more effectively.  At Roberta's House children/families and adults can receive the support they need and look to the future with confidence and hopeful anticipation to develop quality relationships.

“Life is the sum of all your choices.” - Albert Camus

This week’s blog is centered on making better decisions. I selected the above quote because life is INDEED the sum of all our choices. There are some people that always seem to make the worst possible decisions in many areas of their lives. That one person, that often makes you ask the question "What were you thinking when you made THAT decision??!" It seems they always find themselves in a bind, crazy situation or really dangerous position simply because of the decisions they have made. I'm sure we all know at least one person in our space that fits that bill.
It is true that even when we make the wrong decisions, we can learn something from them. When we are open to learn from those situations, a wrong decision has the ability to build character, make us humble, wiser, strong & better. The key here is learning from them. You should NOT find yourself making the same bad decision(s) over and over again. This is actually a pattern of destructive behavior and the consequences are oftentimes more severe and detrimental to your overall well-being.
When you visualize the progression of your life, your goals, aspirations etc....the decisions you make today should reflect those things. Meaning, the decisions you make today should reflect where you ultimately want to end up. If you are making foolish, unwise & emotional based decisions your destination and journey will reflect those decisions. Please know, I'm not saying that everything will end up just as you planned it but I will say that when you make faith-based decisions from a place of wisdom (having most if not all the information needed) you are allowing the universe to guide you in the right direction.
When I make decisions at this point of my life I ask myself, "How does this particular decision align with where I want my life to progress?" I try to make the best possible decisions. If the decision/action is in direct contradiction to what I want in my future...I avoid it. I don't always succeed but I am at least mindful of the impact making a bad decision can have on those things I want in my future. **I would be doing this blog a disservice if I left out the fact that many times, making NO decision out of fear of making the wrong one can be just as destructive as making a bad one.**
If you want a better credit score: make decisions that will help you on that journey. STOP using your charge cards, pay some off, opt out of buying something you really don't need, budget your money and pay bills on-time etc. If you want a healthy loving relationship: make the decision to invest time with your partner, establish lines of trust, peace, discover ways to become or re-establish your friendship, keep the BIG monsters OUT of your relationship (we all know what they are). If you want a career change: make the decision to go back to school, take a few courses to brush up on your skills if you are rusty in some areas, attend job fairs, update your resume' etc.
Making better decisions is critical to your journey and the path you take to get there. I challenge us all to make the decision to make better decisions....the course of your life will thank you for it!

Have a super week!

“Life is the sum of all your choices.” - Albert Camus

Monday, March 14, 2011

Take the Risk!

The Reward of Risk

(Please take a few seconds to read the text in the above Picture....)

"I would rather fail in trying, than succeed at being mediocre."  - Chanel T. Bastfield

Good Afternoon Everyone! I pray your weekend was splendid and you had a chance to enjoy the wonderful weather.

Pay It Forward: I sponsored a child from my church to play laser tag. The fee was only $13 bucks but with the economy being so fickle, that may be the determining factor in whether a kid can go on the trip or not. So...I gave the money for an unknown kid to enjoy a day of laser tag fun.

This week’s blog is about taking risk! I've been researching Dr. Ben Carson all morning and he has some great insight into the notion of taking acceptable risk. The key term being acceptable. If you never step out of your comfort zone and launch out into the deep, how will you ever learn or experience the FULL potential of what this life has for YOU. In my opinion, we tend to stay in our comfort zones because it's the safe space that we feel we have control over. If we stick to what we know, we minimize our chances of getting disappointed and or rejected. As creatures of habit, being in control of our destiny and everything therein {or at least feeling like we are} makes us feel secure. Right?
Taking the risk is oftentimes associated with negative results. "It's not worth the risk" or "Avoid the risk at all cost" are just a few mindsets that keep people in a state of mediocrity. Yes, you may temporarily avoid disappointment, yes, you may temporarily feel accomplished in your complacency but you may also experience great reward and personal fulfillment in taking the risk!
For example: I think back to when I was playing the penny machines at the casino...yes, playing the penny machines were safe, didn't seem to cost me much and when I made me feel like I was doing something special by seeing 500 winner on the screen!! I graduated to playing the quarter machines I cost may be a little more and the risk of loss is higher...but when I did win was 500 QUARTERS instead of 500 PENNIES! You get the picture I'm painting?
I stepped out of my comfort zone and looked at the big picture. This helped me to see that staying safe and taking minimal risk isn't always the answer for success. There will be times when you have to throw caution to the wind and take the risk! There will be times when you have to make a decision where the risk of loss may be higher but...instead of looking at what you could lose, look at what you could possibly gain! Also, even if you make the decision to take the risk...and it's not the best decision, at least you've received a valuable life lesson and you can say, "I at least tried and I now know the results of that particular action." Dr. Carson outlines how to determine when to take the risk and his system is one that I feel could lead to empowerment in many dynamics of life! If you are interested in this topic pick up his book, Take the Risk: Learning to Identify, Choose, and Live With Acceptable Risk.
Perhaps you are dealing with an issue in your professional or personal life and you are struggling over making a move based on the risk of the decision. To get you started answer the following questions:
- What’s the best that can happen if I do this?

 - What’s the worst that can happen if I do this?

      - What’s the best that can happen if I don't do this?

       - What’s the worst that can happen if I don't do this?

The risk just may lead to an even GREATER reward!

Have an AMAZING week!


Monday, March 7, 2011

Your Reflection

Reflecting shifts your Perspective.

Good Morning Everyone. I missed a week of blogging because an acute onset of Bronchitis and an Upper respiratory infection desired to give me a week off from work and all normal activities. But...I'm alive and now back to work! Thank you for all the emails and calls. I appreciate you all.

Pay It Forward: I paid for baby supplies for a young lady that looked like she could really use some help. I don't know why I always feel like crying after a pay it forward (sometimes I do) but the feeling is amazing and I just pray that the people who are touched by this movement really remember my deeds, see the Christ in my actions and do something for someone else.

--This weeks blog will be's about reflection & the impact it can have on your perspective---

I came across another online blog that I started last year. It only had like 5 entries (not sure why I stopped) and it was a personal blog. So, it wasn't one that I shared with anyone like this was more of a mental flow of thoughts, feelings and a season I was experiencing in my life. My FIRST impulse was to quickly EXIT out and not read it. Then, I took a deep breath and decided read. The blog captured an exact time of my life that may have been lost as a distant memory had I not recorded it in written form. Wow. I mean, it's one thing to remember something but when you have the actual event recorded and captured in whatever takes on a whole new energy. So, after reading the entries...I took a few moments to, Reflect.

How many times in your life have you stumbled across an old photograph, ticket stub, heard a song, experienced a moment or smelled and scent that instantly took you back to a certain point in your life? I mean, the trigger almost made you feel the exact emotion behind the event it was SO intense? You may have even had to ask yourself, "Why am I feeling this or Where did this feeling come from?!!" All because something triggered you back to a moment of your life...I'm not speaking of only negative events here. I'm speaking of those moments in your journey through life that are a major part of who you are now...this very day.
I feel like reflective moments are given to us to evaluate, appreciate and enjoy...Life. Reflection can catapult you into a state of appreciation of the life you NOW live. It provides you with a vivid space to evaluate where your life is...and where it could have been. It also gives you an opportunity to remember and experience a moment that can give you peace, understanding and joy of certain situations. Reflecting is not dwelling, it's simply allowing yourself to BE in whatever moment is presented to you. If you take the time to reflect on your journey it may also give you clarity about other situations. You begin to see things for what they really are. You begin to realize that some things aren't as important as you once thought they were. You begin to evaluate situations in a totally different light. You begin to have peace about things that may have otherwise driven you off the deep end. You begin to value life and the things IN your life more. You begin to appreciate even the not-so-good moments. You begin to have an inner soothing about the uncertainties of life. You may begin to find the strength to keep on movin' on.

Allow yourself time to reflect. Don't get so caught up in the daily grind that you miss an opportunity to see just how far you've come, the person you’ve evolved into or the progress your life is making. You may be feeling like your life is at a stand still...or that you're stuck in limbo or that you're just gliding thru life and not really making any progress. Perhaps you're missing a loved one and just need a moment to find solidarity and comfort in their memory. Even if things are going GREAT in your life...I challenge you to reflect with an open heart, mind and spirit & be open to the universe guiding you. You'll be amazed at how your perspective about life will shift.

Have a fantastic week!