True Productivity

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Stay curious. Ask yourself, “What would happen if I dipped the whole side of the brush, for example…”

Flora Bowley, artist

While experimenting with my own brushes and hearing her words, I thought of how critical it is to stay curious in life. It’s so easy (and debilitating) to allow things and people to get “old” on you.

We complain that we’re bored, but maybe WE have become boring.

Stay curious.

Ask yourself, “What if…” (and act on that question!) at least once a day.

 

 

 

 

 

Wanting

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“Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.”  Dalai Lama

Sometimes, we want something very badly: a new job, a promotion, a raise, or an award of some kind. It’s usually because obtaining it would give us meaning, value or respect in the eyes of others.

It’s good to strive for better. It’s good to push yourself. But it’s in the effort that the reward sits, not in the fruit.

Eckhart Tolle says, “How do you let go of attachments of things? Don’t even try. Effort creates attachment. Attachment to things drops away by itself when you no longer seek to find yourself in them.”

Byron Katie reminds us that (for example) when it comes to working hard to get a new job (crafting your resume and cover letter, preparing for the interview), that is YOUR business. But when it comes to deciding whether you get that job, that is THEIR business and all the rest is up to “god” (her definition of god is reality).

So stay in your business. Live each moment fully. And let everything else go.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Purple Cow

 

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“The hard part isn’t charging more. It’s delivering more than the person paid for.”

Seth Godin

He published Purple Cow in 2003 and his message, “Be remarkable to cut through the noise” rings truer than ever. Snake oil and social media are ubiquitous. There’s too much information, noise, and duplicity out there. You can stand out by providing outstanding value.

 

 

Quiet Hero

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Tuesday Doodle

She shuffles to the register

her head, cocked slightly, shakes

The customer, in his sports gear, looks on

irritated, he tries to rush her with his eyes

 

But she’s unmoved – stiff, slow and careful

her quivering hand cradles his produce

she glides it over the scanner gracefully

he searches the ceiling for . . . . . . . . . . . . . mercy?

 

He jams his card in the chip reader

the receipt trembles in mid air

he grabs it from her, forcefully smirks

and mutters as he walks away

 

She doesn’t see this

because she’s smiling and nodding

at the next customer

her rebellious body complies unsteadily

 

for now

 

 

 

 

 

Stop Running (Mindlessly)

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To run on a hamster wheel means to do things without thinking and without an end in sight. It’s a lack of presence.

“How can you tell if you’re on The Hamster Wheel? Your focus narrows and becomes singular. You get reactive instead of proactive. You’re not breathing deeply. Your shoulders are tense. Your jaw may be gripped. Your heart is beating fast and you feel frantic. You experience chronic fight or flight syndrome, your adrenaline is pumping like crazy. You stop really ‘seeing’ people and they start to become objects.”

By Karen Kimsey-House

Click on the author’s quote above for tips on how to stop running on the hamster wheel.

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I’m trying to make my morning run the only time I “run” throughout my day.

 

Toucan

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The toucan can!

Did you know that their beaks are “honeycomb-like” (lightweight) and virtually useless as a weapon? But the other animals don’t know that! 

 

Tip of the Day (from personal experience):

Start your day with something that is hard to do physically…something that requires you to push yourself. Achieving it first thing in the day will give you a sense of accomplishment and vigor for the next 15 to 18 hours. 

 

 

Self-Advocate

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Daily Painting Challenge (#10)

Listening to Oprah’s podcast with will.i.am, I was profoundly impressed with him not only as a musician, but as an education proponent. His i.am.angel foundation brings STEAM (science, technology, engineering and math) programs to under-served communities. This foundation has also awarded over $800k in scholarships and 97% of these students are the first in their families to go to college.

Will echoes Milton Berle’s sage advice:

If a door closes, build a new door.

This reminds me of something that happened a few weeks ago, when I was reading the Red4Ed message board. A school bus driver wrote: “Are you guys (teachers) demanding a raise and better benefits for us classified staff?” 

I see way too much self-medicating and not enough self-advocating these days. Don’t ever assume someone is looking out for you. You’ve got to do the heavy lifting yourself. Exercise your rights. Vote. Do something with what you have.

If you go by the usual quote, “When one door closes, another opens,” it assumes you will just wait for another one to open. When you build your own, it won’t ever close.

will.i.am