Sunday, June 25, 2017

Stinging Defeat Fuels Desire for Self Improvement


Losing stinks.  We got the same results yesterday in the championships that we got two weeks ago, a 3-2 team loss.  It came down to a super tie breaker and the other team closed it out.  We are still waiting to find out if we advance as a wild card team and won't know until Wednesday night.  All I can say is the fight isn't over.  It's time to step up the training.  I can do better.  The silver lining is that my caveman food experiment is helping me with my endurance.  It's really fun to compete at this level.  Now it's time to get back to the basics and learn how to play better in the wind.  I applaud our opponents for their great play yesterday.  Have a great day.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Another Date with Destiny


Today is the first time since joining the men's Iowa USTA tennis league that our team has home field advantage for the state championships.  I plan on savoring every moment on the court with my doubles partner who has a wing span like no other, except maybe his son who plays college tennis and sometimes practices with us.  The weather will be cool and breezy.  A couple of family members are coming out to cheer for us as we defend our title and I'm feeling better than ever, even though I'm one of the oldest players in the 40+ division.  We are still awaiting word about a possible wild card spot in the 18+ division where our team came up short by one match in the finals.  Today's showdown is against many of the same opponents we faced a couple of weeks ago.  These are the kinds of days that take my breath away.  Today's match is dedicated to my Aunt Peggy who will be watching from the grandstands in Heaven.  One of my favorite memories is being on the courts with her and a couple of other relatives for a tennis lesson.  If you live in the Iowa City area, stop by and say hello at the University of Iowa tennis courts.  We will be playing all morning.  Have a great day.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Got Joy?

Some things are meant to be deferred.  Joy is not one of them.  If you believe you can't have joy until a later date due to something you need to cross off your check list, I have a feeling you may not ever find it.  I encounter joy in the daily process of living no matter the circumstances.  It really is an attitude.  Ask yourself where the joy is in your life.  Stop looking for it on the calendar.  Have a great day.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Cleared for Take-off


My doubles partner for Saturday's match was out of touch for a week.  He booked a four day tennis camp and came back a new man.  Last night he shared newfound wisdom from some of the best doubles players around and all I can say is, "wow!"  We played for two hours and it was action-packed.  I believe we're cleared for take-off in our playoff match on Saturday morning and the weather is looking good.  I'll let you know how it goes.  Have a great day. 

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Summer Solstice Today


If you like sunshine, today is a great day.  This is the longest day of the year.  The sun will still be shining when I hit the tennis courts at 7 pm for my final practice before our big showdown on Saturday.  My biggest hope right now is that the sun doesn't set on our dreams of advancing to the Midwest championships.  What separates us from the crowd is our willingness to practice regularly.  I love being around people who pursue excellence.  Enjoy some time in the sun today.  Have a great day.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Can You Survive When Your Body Declares War on You?


The most dangerous kind of illness is the one you are unaware of.  Sadly, many of the modern day afflictions in our world today come from the foods we eat, the water we drink and the air we breathe.  Our own bodies are responding in a way that actually make us sicker.  How can that be?  Aren't our natural defense systems supposed to make us better?  Keep in mind most doctors are trying to solve the problem by prescribing pills that only treat the symptoms.  It's difficult to find the source of the problem when your own body is fighting itself and nothing shows up in the tests.

Odds are really high you know someone, maybe a relative, who is under siege and they may not know the attack is coming from within.  Here's a partial list...

Cancer
Obesity
Arthritis
High blood pressure
Celiac
Crohn's disease
Asthma
Diabetes
High Cholesterol
Alzheimer's disease
Parkinson's disease
Heart attacks
Stroke

I'm a survivor.  I discovered my own body was attacking me by cutting off the supply lines of the foods that were the source of my problems.  At the time, I was totally unaware what these foods were or if food was the cause of my high blood pressure.  I will never allow my own body to attack me again.  I will also do my best on a daily basis to help others understand how to win a war declared by their own bodies.  Masking the symptoms only prolongs the war and makes the drug companies richer.  Winning the war comes from understanding what causes the body to attack itself and making changes.  Have a great day.



Monday, June 19, 2017

How to Tip the Scales in Your Favor


You really don't need to be a calorie counter.  I find it unnecessary as long as I make the right food choices about 90% of the time and avoid eating anything on my danger list.  It's all about balance.  An ideal month for me is eating out no more than 3x.  Dining at home consists of mostly fruits, veggies, nuts, beans and seeds.  Small amounts of fish, chicken and red meat are okay as long as the portions are light.  Dairy is permanently off my list.  So are all processed foods.  Other banned foods are soda, canola oil, flour and artificial ingredients.  I've been doing this for nearly two years and it's been smooth sailing.

The next major test is on Saturday, 6/24 when my men's 40+ team plays in our state championship match.  My secret weapon is my down-sized waistline.  What a difference shedding 30 pounds makes.  Tip the scales in your favor today.  You can do this.  Have a great day.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Happy Father's Day


My dad's spirit echoes throughout the invisible walls of cyberspace, reminding me my role is to pass the baton to the next generation just as he did with me and my siblings before departing.  I'm fortunate to be a dad.  It's the most challenging assignment I've ever had and also the most rewarding.  Savor time with your dad today and if he's no longer with you, savor a memory.  Happy Father's Day to all the dads.  Have a great day.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Got Peace of Mind?


Your peace of mind isn't on some remote island or over the rainbow.  It's much closer than you think.  Others may try to steal it from you once you find it.  Don't let them.  It's one of your greatest assets.  Consider it your football.  Hold onto it.  Become a master of maintaining possession, especially in critical situations.  Your teammates will rally around you when you display calmness in times of stress.  Peace of mind is contagious.  So is anxiety.  You can't have both footballs at the same time.  Choose the one that will get you in the end zone repeatedly.  Have a great day.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Your Life


Like it or not, you're a living, breathing, walking billboard.  It's not the words you say that advertise your life to others, it's your actions.  Plan your daily steps carefully.  They world is watching.  Your children may not always listen to your words but they learn from the choices you make.  Be bold.  Send a message that can make a difference.  Have a great day.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Beware of Self-made Roadblocks


Self-made roadblocks are manufactured in your brain.  In my opinion, they are the most difficult to overcome because no one knows you better than your own mind.  If good ideas are your seeds for success, doubts are the manure.  Yep.  Fertilizer.  You don't need to bother paying for it either.  It's free and the supply is nearly unlimited.  Most others can't stand the smell of it so they turn around and run away.  Why not look at all your brain is doing for you and decide you're going to produce a bumper crop this year?  What good is all that manure without some of your ideas the world hungers for?  Have a great day.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

How Much Time Do You Need to Complete Your Assignment?


This isn't a trick question.  You don't need to share your answer.  It's for your eyes only.  I'm referring to your life's purpose.  Everybody has one.  I don't know how long it will take you to complete your assignment but I do believe you have exactly the right amount provided you don't squander it.

If you're unsure about your assignment, consider what you have planned for today and ask yourself if your to do list coincides with your mission.  If not, it may be a good idea to change your priorities.  Have a great day.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Something for Your Refrigerator


I never worry when I open my refrigerator door because I know there's always enough inside and that's just the beginning of my day.  Everywhere I look, there's enough good things to savor.  There are enough people to thank for the contributions they make.  There are enough projects to keep my hands busy.  It all comes down to gratitude.  Those who lack it will never have enough.  If you're a daily visitor to this site, I have a pretty good idea you're someone who already has enough and you really don't need one more quote for your refrigerator.  I'm offering it because I want you to have something to remind you I'm thankful for your presence in my life.  I'm especially grateful for the friends I have and you are at the top of the list.  I'm putting this on my refrigerator today to serve as a reminder of our friendship.  Thank you for being a part of my life.  Have a great day.

Monday, June 12, 2017

It's Not Over Until the Fat Lady Sings


My uncle Mike read an excerpt from dad's final letter before losing his battle to cancer.  It's not over until the fat lady sings but I think I hear her humming a few bars, dad wrote.  She was humming again at our state championship battle on Saturday in Waterloo.  The winds were also howling in our showdown.  We came up short as a team, losing 3-2.  Our only hope of advancing is a wild card invitation based on our season record.  I would like to thank all the friends and family members who supported me during this amazing year.  My team-mate, Fred, and I eked out a win at number one doubles, winning the super tie breaker 11-9 but it wasn't enough to defend our Men's 18+ state title and we will have to fight extra hard next year to take back the crown.

There's no rest for us.  We will see many of the same players again in the Men's 40+ state championships on Saturday, 6/24 at 8:30 AM at the University of Iowa tennis courts in Iowa City.  Friends and family are welcome to come cheer for the home team.  Will someone please tell the fat lady we're playing in Waterloo?  Thank you.  Have a great day.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

It's a Mac-less Day Today


Hold the phones.  Hold the computers.  I'm Mac-less today.  This story has been prerecorded.  I'll be back live tomorrow to share the results from yesterday's playoff match in Waterloo.  I'm also playing in the Men's 40+ state championship match on Saturday, June 24 at 8:30 AM with many of the same team-mates from the 18+ division.  The showdown will take place on the Hawkeye tennis courts in Iowa City.  If you're in the area, come cheer for the home team.  Have a great day.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Move Over, Napoleon – We're Invading Waterloo Today


There are rumors we drive on the right side of the road because Napoleon wanted the upper hand against his mostly right-handed opponents.  I don't have any evidence to support the rumor that Napoleon was a lefty, however, I do believe my left-handedness will be an asset this morning when our team plays for the state championships.  In fact, there are a couple of lefties on my team who love to shake things up in a mostly right-handed world.  My team-mates enjoy playing against us in order to prepare for future opponents who go against the grain.

I'm hoping my season won't end as Napoleon's did in Waterloo.  We may not be fighting with swords, but we each have our favorite tennis weapons.  Wilson will be at my side and he's sporting some new strings I've been experimenting with.  I need all the help I can to win our battle in Waterloo today.  Have a great day.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Tennis Battle in Waterloo Tomorrow


The temps will be in the 90's tomorrow when our men's tennis team plays for the state championships.  That's the way I like it.  The winds will be blowing and the humidity may hit the 50% mark.  The more elements the better.  I have a feeling a few bugs may also join the fun.  The way I see it, the conditions are the same on both sides of the court.  It's how each player deals with the situation that makes the difference.  These are the kinds of days I live for.  In order for my team to advance to the next level, we need to win three matches out of five.  The format is two singles players and three doubles teams.  Our team is well prepared.  I will be off-line until Monday morning and will let you if our Cinderella story is still alive.  Have a great day.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Would You Consider Writing to the Younger You?

MercyMe inspired me to think about today's question with their song, "Dear Younger Me."  Click on the YouTube video above for more.  I'm pretty sure I won't be receiving any warning letters from my future self because I already know all the situations and obstacles I would prefer to avoid are what I need to grow in wisdom.  There are no easy solutions.  If I did get an opportunity to write to the younger me, I have a feeling my letter would look something like this...

Dear Younger Me,

Every choice you make from this day forward will affect me, the future you.  Your choices also affect others.  I know what a deep thinker you are and I'm well aware of your competitiveness.  Sorry, you're reading this letter, scanning for ways to avoid all your future mistakes, but you won't find anything specific here.  The trials ahead of you are part of the journey.  I only have one morsel from your future to offer you.  Here you go...

There are only two teams on the planet – those who are on God's side and the other side.  Remember this, God created every member of each team.  You are not here to judge any of the players.  You are not here to destroy the other side.  In fact, your assignment is to help the other side.  When this game of life is over, you will be judged not by how you treated the players on your team but how you helped the other side.  You are the recruiter.  The other side has been duped.  Many of the players are forbidden to know about the One you follow.  It's not their fault.  You won't win them over by hating them.

Are you concerned about your assignment?  The truth is everyone on your team is called to recruit players for God's side.  If you need help, call on the Holy Spirit.  He already knows the future and He can give you Divine assistance if you're willing to ask.  Make good choices and take it one day at a time.  I'll see you at the finish line.  Have a great day.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Seeking Shelter?


I discovered a great place for rest and relaxation.  You can find it in verse one and two of Psalm 91.  If you have time, check out the entire Psalm for the complete package.  Here you go:

Psalm 91

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
    will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.[a]
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
    my God, in whom I trust.”

Have a great day.



Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Is 90 the New 40?


Last evening, my wife and I watched "If You're Not in the Obit, Eat Breakfast," an HBO documentary.  I'm inspired by all the 90+ people featured in the show, some of them who claim they are just getting started.  There are three key takeaways – keep moving, get connected and find something to contribute, especially when it's something you're passionate about.

If you're looking for something entertaining to watch packed with great tips on how to live better, check out this documentary.  Have a great day.

Monday, June 5, 2017

How Editing Applies to Life


There's only one way I'm going to be able to get this next book out of the birth canal – heavy duty editing.  That's why editing is on my mind every morning when I wake up and I see how overdue my baby is.  The situation prompts me to ponder how editing applies to life.  There's no way to rewrite your previous chapters but you do have the ability to seek forgiveness for prior hurts or mistakes.  All you have to do is ask.  If you're seeking a fairy tale ending, resolve all the conflicts with your main characters.  Seek peace.  In tennis, the game always starts at love.  Begin today's chapter of your life with love.  You can edit your future by taking care of important business in the present.  Have a great day.


Sunday, June 4, 2017

How Do You Feel About Change?


Your attitude about change can help you or hinder you.  I'm certainly no change expert but it's a topic I have a great deal of experience dealing with in my personal life.  Change is like a drop of water hitting a large pool.  The ripples hit your family and loved ones like a tidal wave and continue to friends, classmates, work peers, even enemies.  The bigger the change, the stronger the reaction you will observe.  Some ripples transcend time itself. 

One of the most important lessons I learned about change is that it's best not to try to change others.  The time and energy you expend is better used changing yourself.  If you're satisfied with your life as it is, there's no need to make any changes.  That doesn't mean you're off the hook because someone close to you may hit you with one of their own ripples when you least expect it.  How are you going to handle it if someone you love says, "I'm dying"?  This happened to me fifteen years ago with my dad.  Yep, the ripples are still rippling.

When dealing with others, consider change as chapters in a book.  Some are further along in their reading while others may only be on the first chapter.  You will most likely relate best to those who are on the same page as you but that's a small number compared to the general population.  Be patient with the ones who need more time to comprehend the reading material and ask the speed readers ahead of you to give you more time to grasp all the emotions you're feeling.  Have a great day.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Got Challenges?


It's in your DNA.  You can thank your ancestors for what you have.  It's that quiet voice in your head that's always nudging you to push a little harder and venture outside your comfort zone.  Be careful what you do with your challenges.  If you limit them, your dreams will wither and die.  But if you challenge your limits, you will discover what you're made of.  There are other voices out there to be wary of – the voices of the naysayers.  These voices are afraid you will win and render them speechless.  Remove the contraction from can't and you have the power to do anything you can dream.  Do you accept the challenge?  Have a great day.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Stay the Course

 A goal worth setting is worth achieving, no matter how long it takes or how challenging the course.  My friends stopped asking me when my next book will be delivered.  Perhaps they see the labor pains in my expressions.  I'm now a month overdue and I still can't see the finish line.  That's okay.  My sails are up.  My ship will come in.  So will yours.  Just don't give up.  Have a great day.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

A Life-changing Quote

Today's quote from Thomas Edison is also a challenge.  This is the story of my life.  Accept this challenge and your life will never be the same.  Sorry.  I don't know the solution.  It's up to you to discover a better way.  This applies to every area of your life.  Time to get busy.  Have a great day.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Start Here for Excellence

Do you remember the first day of Kindergarten?  Everyone in your class was a beginner.  Excellence wasn't in anybody's vocabulary.  The same is true in every area of your life that you value.  If you're good at something it's because you gave it a try and stuck with it. 

One of the areas of my life I'm working at is being a better follower of Jesus.  Jesus likes baby steps.  Children are his specialty because they have no bad habits.  Imagine what he can do with someone who commits as a beginner who is not afraid to fail.  I believe Jesus can make all things new.  Care to join me?  Let's do this together.  This is day 1.  The only thing I know for sure is that I'm not an excellent Christian.  I need the basics and the first lesson is loving God with every fiber of my being and loving others the way I love myself.  This is going to take a while, maybe a lifetime.  If you don't notice anything different about me, please forgive me – I realize no one starts off being excellent and I'm still in Kindergarten.  If you're willing to sit next to me, thanks.  Have a great day.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Beware – Misery Loves Company

Beware of miserable people.  They are high maintenance.  If you stay around them long enough, they will drain all your positive energy to the point where you risk becoming miserable.  They are like Kryptonite.

The best way to spot a negative person is to look at their interactions with others.  You will see a pattern.  They are like mud wrestlers.  They will challenge anyone they can to a fight and their only goal is to get you muddy so they can feel better about their misery.  You will get muddy.  There's no escape except so keep your distance.  Do not engage.  Run.  Hide.  Do whatever you can to lead a peaceful life without any drama.  Misery loves company.  Keep your doors locked.  Have a great day.


Monday, May 29, 2017

Happy Memorial Day


It's easy to take things for granted,  especially when our lives are so far removed from the dangerous places in the world filled with war and terror.  That's why today is so special.  It's a day we remember all those brave men and women in uniform who gave their lives for our freedom.  Please take a moment and pray for those who lost a loved one serving our country.  Happy Memorial Day.  Have a great day.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

The Lessons in Your Mistakes


The further you venture outside your comfort zone, the more vulnerable you become to the unknown.  Warning!  You will make more mistakes here.  For me, it's the learning zone.  I'm a big fan of feedback.  Positive or negative, this is how you know what's working and what needs improvement.  That last mistake you made is your best teacher.  It's the most recent data you have.  Take your emotions out of the equation and use the data to make the necessary adjustments.  The wise man welcomes mistakes as learning opportunities.  The fool avoids errors at all costs and never improves.  Have a great day.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Follow Your Heart


Your heart has its own navigation system.  The challenge for many is that we hear too much noise from the wrong people and we turn off the navigation because of outside influences.  The road will get bumpy.  There will be heartbreaks along the way.  It's worth it, especially when the one seated next to you is the right one.  Have a great day.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Life is a Series of Mulligans


I've been playing tennis since the summer before entering high school.  In dog years that was over two centuries ago.  And I do believe that those first 10,000 balls I hit were my worst.  Life is a series of mulligans.  If you want to get better, stay at it and focus on improvement.  This applies to any endeavor.  Choose something you enjoy so you will stay at it long enough to maximize your potential.  Have a great day.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

It's All About the Challenges


It's an exciting time of the year right now.  The outside temperature is heating up just in time for my upcoming tennis playoffs next month.  Indoor tennis is safe and comfortable – no wind and no sun, just like the comfort zone most of us live in.  I'm venturing outside tonight into the elements.  That's where the real fun is because that's where the growth happens.  It's all about the challenges.

Your comfort zone may be a beautiful place but don't get too relaxed – nothing grows there.  Go outside.  Take risks.  Seize the day.  Have a great day.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The 3-Step Process of Winning


Do you have what it takes to be a winner?  Zig Ziglar says you were born to win.  Unfortunately, it doesn't always work out that way.  The part most who fail to win overlook is what is necessary prior to the victory.  It's a 3-step process, plan to win, prepare to win and expect to win.

I would like to add my two cents here.  It's how to handle a loss.  It involves reviewing each step to see what went wrong.  Could it be not enough planning, preparing and/or expecting to win?  Or maybe the opponent was bigger and stronger than expected?  I like to think of winning as a process that never ends.  It's a cycle that continues season after season.  Zig Ziglar offers great advice about the process of winning.  Give it a try.  Have a great day.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Rules of the Game


Life is a game.  The sooner you learn the rules and figure out how to maximize your moves, the more fulfilling the game.  I'm the first one to admit it gets complicated at times.  I do find the most challenging opponent on the board is my own self.  Each day is an opportunity to improve and play a little better than I did yesterday.  Don't ever quit.  Stay in the game.  Ignore the cheaters and the critics.  Show the world your best moves and inspire them to make their own lives better.  Have a great day.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Ode to the Citizens of Heaven


The longer you live, the bigger the list grows.  I'm referring to the citizens of Heaven.  My family said good-bye to our dad fifteen years ago on May 20, 2012.  He had directions to Heaven stashed away in his laptop.  We thought he checked in early when he disappeared for a joy ride with his wife, Molly, and we couldn't find him.  It scared the Hell out of us.  Dad was on Morphine but didn't know it because we crossed the name off the label.  And he didn't really know the neighborhood where he was visiting.

"I have the keys to Heaven," dad told me a few days before his disappearance.  How does a man who can barely walk escape in broad daylight?  I'm still trying to figure out how he managed to sneak out for one final joy ride with his wife who was in a wheel chair and could barely move.  I'll have to wait for the answer since both of them are now citizens of Heaven.

It's painful to lose a loved one.  They say time heals all wounds but I'm calling bulls**t.  My sister was clutching the road map to Heaven in her hands while in intensive care two years ago.  She made a U-turn just as the pearly gates where coming in to view in front of her.  Her doctors are calling it a miracle.  If you ask her how close Heaven is, she'll tell you, "turn right and go straight ahead."

I prefer to follow another of my "dadisms" from long ago, "take your coat off and stay a while."  I'm sure Heaven is a great place and it's filled with some amazing people I miss dearly, but there's work to be done.  I have unfinished business, including an overdue book to publish.  Stay tuned for the rest of the story.  And please pause for a moment to salute all the citizens of Heaven.  Have a great day.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

One Day or Day One?


This is the day the Lord has made.  You have the opportunity to decide if it's day one of the rest of your life or one day just like any other day.  Live well and be happy.  Have a great day.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Spring Planting for Your Future Field of Dreams


Your future field of dreams is dependent upon what seeds you plant.  Lack of planting means no harvest.  Use your imagination and dream big.  Don't allow anything from your past to creep into your thoughts about your potential.  Be wary of the critics on the sidelines who are unfamiliar with farming techniques.  Get busy and plant.  Give your dreams everything they need to succeed.  Have a great day.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Do You Know Your Biological Age?


You can't control your actual body age.  What you can influence is your biological time clock.  It's all about making healthy choices and slowing the seconds down.  Your sleep habits, food choices, exercise patterns and attitude all play a role.  I found a site that can help you determine your biological age and it only takes two minutes.  Click here for the link.  Have a great day.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Got Gratitude?


It's a good idea to take inventory of everything you have.  Make a list of everything you're thankful for.  You might be surprised.  The older I get the more thankful I am for everything I have, especially my loved ones.  It's a great feeling when you live in abundance.  I do believe this comes from having an attitude of gratitude.  Give gratitude a try.  Have a great day.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

How I Changed My Food Misconceptions


Just because something tastes good, it doesn't necessarily mean it's healthy for you.  In fact, the people who package your food intentionally add ingredients so you will come back for seconds.  No wonder so many of us are addicted to the foods we eat.  The misconceptions spinning around in my head about food were contributing to my oversized belly and I needed a fresh start.  I emptied my fridge and pantry of all processed foods and gave the caveman food experiment a try for 45 days.

Healthy eating doesn't have to be science fiction.  It certainly doesn't need to be a mystery.  I believe it can be an adventure if you approach it with the right mindset.  And you can keep your friends in suspense if you don't spill the beans about your food secrets to losing weight so quickly.

Everyone has their own ideas about what's healthy and what's not.  Trust the skinny people.  Ask them how they eat.  Look for patterns.  Give the caveman food experiment a try for 45 days and see for yourself which foods agree with you and which don't.  You can't go wrong with fruits, veggies, nuts, beans and seeds.  After 45 days, add one new food at a time and see how your body responds.  Have a great day.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Obstacles


Obstacles.  They come in all shapes and sizes.  Friends.  Enemies.  Loved ones.  Thoughts.  Beliefs.  They show up uninvited at the most inopportune times.  Perhaps the greatest threat to your goals is self doubt – that nagging inner voice that never leaves, like a shadow.  I consider my obstacles as mile markers.  I expect them at every turn.  The bigger the project, the more mile markers.  Deal with them one at a time.  You will eventually reach your destination as long as you don't allow your obstacles to have the power to stop you.  Wisdom is acquired when you learn how to get past every obstacle you encounter.  Have a great day.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Bite-size Your Life


Are you feeling overwhelmed by all the demands of daily life?  I can relate.  Certain parts of my life are fixed.  I choose not to disturb my sleep schedule because when I do, other problems arise from lack of sleep.  My day job and commute time are also fixed.  All other available time is broken down into bite-sized portions I can consume one hour at a time.  This works for me.  Start your day with some easy-to-eat appetizers, activities that don't require large blocks of time.  Consume your most important tasks like a seven course meal, each portion small enough to devour without feeling out-of-control.  Consider your favorite tasks as dessert and save them for the end of the day.  This meal plan will help you with your time management.  Have a great day.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day


Happy Mother's Day to all the moms.  This is your special day.  May you feel pampered by your loved ones today.  I would like to give a shout out to my mother who raised six kids.  We are fortunate to have someone so caring in our lives.  I am who I am today because my mother never gave up on me, even when I wanted to give up.  She never stopped believing in us.  I know where her perseverance comes from – her faith.  My mother is a relentless prayer warrior.  She's the one person you want on your side when the chips are down.

There's a reason God asks us to honor our mother and father.  Take a look at Ephesians 6:1-3, Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.  “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—  “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”

You will find my mother's words of wisdom between the lines of all my blog stories and books.  She inspires me.  I thank God for her.  Happy Mother's Day, mom.  I love you.  Enjoy your special day.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Rate Your Happiness at Your Day Job


Someone asked me yesterday, "if you got a call from Google asking you to come aboard, would you quit your day job?"

My response was simple and quick.  "No thanks, I have everything I need."  I'm sure Google is a great company and I have nothing against them.  My answer reflects my level of happiness where I am today.  Happiness is something you create from the inside.  It's a choice to make the best of every situation and you get what you give.  It helps when you can find a way to be on the same page with your spouse or significant other.

Take a moment and evaluate your happiness at your day job.  If you're not at a 10, ask yourself what you need to do to raise the bar.  Look in the mirror.  That's where you'll find all the opportunities to create a better work situation and a more fulfilled life.  Have a great day.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Pursue Your Top 3 Passions


Don't ever let anything or anyone stop you from pursuing your top three passions.  Can you name them?  What are they?  If you had to think for a while, chances are you're not allowing them an opportunity to develop.  This can really crush your spirit because you're not living up to your potential.

My three top passions are tennis, writing and cooking.  Cooking is new on the list.  I discovered how much I enjoy it when I was searching for creative ways to eat during the food experiment my cousin asked me to try.  The more time I devote to my top three passions, the happier I am.  If you want more happiness in your life, spend more time on your top three passions.  Put them on your calendar today and pursue them.  Have a great day.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

When Birthing a Book Gets Complicated


Today is the 11th day my book is overdue.  Although the gestation period for a book varies from author to author, I really thought I could force my due date since I'm publishing independently.  It doesn't work that way, especially when complications arise.  Ask any writer what his or her greatest fear is and most likely the answer you will hear is fear of rejection.  In fact, most books never make it to full term because of rejection.  I have a different challenge.  My unborn baby is malnourished and needs intensive care.  I'm going through an editing and re-writing process and I really don't know how long it will take to do it right.  My most precious resource is time and I'm doing my best to manage it wisely so this book can be born soon.  Thank you for your patience.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

How to Tweak Your Mind, Body and Spirit


Today's post is in honor of the "Iron Nun," Sister Madonna Buder, a religious sister and senior Olympian triathlete.  She takes exercise to a whole new level.  Imagine swimming 2.4 miles, biking 112 miles and running a full 26.2 miles – at the age of 82!  She's competed in 325 triathlons including 45 Ironman distances.  And she's still going.  Sister Madonna Buder started training at age 48 in order to tweak her mind, body and spirit.  One of her spiritual advisors told her it would bring relaxation and calmness. 

I feel a connection to this special person who doesn't believe in age barriers.  If I could add one thought to her lifestyle – training "religiously," my recommendation for tweaking your mind, body and spirit is eating "religiously."  In layman's terms, this is eating Nature-made foods as opposed to man-made processed foods.  Give it a try.  You may feel inspired to run, swim and bike like no other, except Sister Madonna Buder.  I trust the One she follows.  Have a great day.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Cinco de Mayo Test Results Confirm Caveman Food Experiment a Long-term Success


My primary care physician told me I'm the poster child for good health.  I visited him last week for my annual physical and he ordered some blood tests.  My HDL (good) cholesterol is higher than ever at 69 and my triglycerides are down 68% from the pre-caveman high of 244.   These numbers are important because they reveal what's going on inside the body and predict the level of risk for heart attacks, stroke and other diseases.  I was in the danger zone with three strikes against me prior to entering the caveman food experiment.  It's been 20 months since I became the first lab rat and I feel like a million bucks.  The other lab rats are shedding pounds as well.  I'm happy to report that one of the volunteers who is being monitored by his physician during the experiment is now down to just one blood pressure medicine because his body is responding favorably to the caveman food lifestyle.

If your doctor isn't happy with your lipid panel readings or you feel like your belly isn't ready for a poolside appearance this summer, here's the Reader's Digest version of the 45-day Caveman Food Experiment:

  • Stop eating all processed foods
  • Cut out all alcohol except for up to 2 glasses of wine per day
  • If you see a label on your food package, don't eat it unless all the ingredients are natural
  • No pop allowed
  • No dairy allowed
  • Avoid flour
  • Eat as much fruits, veggies, nuts, beans and seeds as you desire
  • Weigh yourself daily and track your results
  • Visit your doctor after 45 days and order a blood test to see your results
Please notify your doctor of your intentions to try this experiment before you begin and do this under your doctor's supervision.  It's possible your needs for prescription pills may change.  I'll be sharing more about my journey to better health soon and there will some fun recipes to try.  Have a great day.

Monday, May 8, 2017

The Heart is Still Beating


There's no book yet.  The good news is the heart is still beating.  I'm happy to report that the intensive care is helping.  I'm going to be in the cave for a while using my primitive editing tools.  Stay tuned.  Thanks for your patience.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Why You Should Expand Your Comfort Zone


I asked my wife yesterday why she thought I was so happy in our new hometown.  "Your pendulum swung the furthest," she said.  "The rest of us were ready to make the move but you had to come a long way in order to make the transition, more than the rest of the family."

I thought about her comment.  She's right.  I was so stuck in my comfort zone that I was really frozen.  That's what comfort zones are – tiny prison cells with no windows.  I had all the excuses for staying locked up.  She had the key to set me free.

Your comfort zone is as big as you want it to be.  Push yourself and you can stretch it.  I'm rather uncomfortable again because I missed my May 1 book deadline and I'm surrounded by chaos.  That's okay.  Comfort zone upgrading requires effort.  There are growing pains.  It's worth it.  My pendulum is in motion.  How about yours?  Are you ready to test the limits of your capabilities?  Have a great day.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

When the Wheels Fall Off the Bus


I know how it feels when the wheels fall off your bus.  It hurts more when you time everything to the minute and then something unexpected or unplanned derails your timeline.  I'm still a big believer in time targets even though I missed my book release date by a wide margin.  What happens next is also what separates the winners from the losers.  I see an image of astronaut Steve Austin in my mind, played by Lee Majors in the Six Million Dollar Man.  He's doing his best to hold everything together but he crashes and burns.  The doctors claim they can rebuild him and make him stronger and better.  If you have no clue what I'm referring to, click here for the YouTube intro clip.  That's what I'm doing now with my book.  I'm rewriting chapters and enhancing the limbs with bionic parts.

I'm playing in my last regular season tennis match today.  Post season is next month and two of the three teams I'm playing on are undefeated and moving forward.  If all goes well, we're headed to the regional playoff matches in August and September.  There won't be any opportunities for book signings or author talks until after our busy season at my day job.  I'm slowing down with my writing in order to get the editing right and also maintain my sanity.  Have a great day.