#22 Interview a Person You Admire

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#22

Interview a Person You Admire

The point of this suggestion is to take some time to ask questions of a person whom you deeply admire. It may be a high profile person, a town celebrity, an old teacher, an executive of your company, the pastor of your church, or it could be an elderly Aunt that you’ve never ‘really’ gotten to know.

Life Lessons

The goal is to garner information that you may not yet know about living a good life. How did they become someone worthy of admiration? What are their takeaways from their own experiences? What perspectives helped them through tough times?

When we take the time to listen – we learn. Sitting with someone with whom you’d like to emulate offers a tremendous opportunity to get into the life lesson fast lane. While their experiences are undoubtedly different than yours, the perspective and skills may be generally applicable.

Tips for Success

I’ll make the assumption that most of us will be interviewing someone who has had some success either in their professions, in their spiritual journey, or in their relationships. How did they do it? What goals did they set? What steps did they actively take to reach those goals? How did they handle the challenges? What attributes allowed them to persevere? Did they fail? What did they learn from failure?

In this era of instant gratification, I know many of us don’t want to work through all the kinks that learning presents. We want to be successful now. Knowing how others accomplished the pinnacle of the mountain you’re climbing may offer a more clear path to the top. Take the time to learn the tips and tricks they used to get there.

Lifelong Student

I don’t see this as a ‘one and done’ kind of activity. Because our lives are always changing, there will most certainly be people in our lives frequently with whom we can have these conversations. It may be a great tradition to practice annually. Choose someone in your life with potential to ‘teach’ you and invite them to lunch or dinner. Pick their brain and then record the essence of that conversation for inclusion in your own life plan. No matter where you are currently in your own journey, there is someone there you may learn from. Take the time to look around and…

Interview a person you admire.

TTAH

Listen to me on Try This at Home – a series of conversations about making life better.

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#34 Send Emails to the Future

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#34

Send Emails to the Future

Would it creep you out to receive an email from your younger self or from someone who has passed away? Personally, I find it a wonderful idea and it’s pretty easy. All you need is a website that will hold your email and schedule it to be sent at some future point and an email address you feel confident you (or the person you’re sending it to) will still be checking at that same future point.

To Yourself

The website futureme.org focuses on encouraging you to send a letter to yourself with the header: Dear Future Me. Some of the sent letters are available to read publicly (you have the option to make it anonymously open) and are akin to reading diary entries. They could be used as encouragement, reflection, or inspiration for the life you are now living. It may be a great avenue to recall important emotional moments in your life as they happen.

To Others

This is the real inspiration in my opinion. There are many things that I’ve wanted to share with my children, friends, or other family members that maybe they weren’t ready to hear or that I wasn’t clear enough to share when the moment was at hand. Some things need time to talk about. The opportunity to share a reflection years later when the emotions have retreated can be a wonderful thing.

Healing

It is said that “time heals all wounds” which, is a misnomer of sorts. Time allows wounds to scar but some scars are always tender or downright painful when touched. Some relationships are not repairable and this the ability to write a letter and have it delivered at some future point may be just the thing that can help the parties involved offer forgiveness or an apology without the energy of the pain associated with it.

The Gift

Perhaps the most special part of this service is that we can share now, things that we may not be able to share at some future point. Certainly, I want to convey the love, admiration, and pride that I feel for my children today and I do make that effort but I feel good knowing that no matter what transpires between now and 10 or 20 years from now, they can receive a bit of mom encouragement then too…

I am one of those rare people that actually has the same email address I had in 1999 and obviously technology has exponentially changed as it is likely to going forward but I find comfort in the hope that people I love will receive a little surprise in their inbox because I too the time today to…

Send emails to the future.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#50 Window Shop

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#50

Window Shop

This term is probably on the brink of being obsolete as very few of us can identify at all with the notion of walking down a street lined with shops that promote their wares in the big front window. It was that stroll that identified the substance of Christmas lists of yesterday. Today, we ‘window shop’ by browsing through the ads injected throughout our social media accounts.

Inspiration

Window shopping can offer inspiration for a number of different areas of your life. It can inspire design when you see complementary colors positioned together. It can inspire a haircut you saw on a mannequin or it can prompt you to go home and recreate the skirt it was wearing. Window shopping can inspire you to cook more, read more, or exercise more just by glancing at the ‘message’ conveyed via the storefront display.

Motivation

Likewise, it can move beyond inspiration and sincerely motivate action to do any of the above. It can motivate you to clean house, organize, and redecorate. It can motivate you toward a goal after seeing something you would really like to have.

Patience

Window shopping can encourage and teach patience. When we only buy something once we have discerned it is the right time and the right price – we are acting in our best interest. Walking past a display two, three, or four times across a few days, weeks, or months may be just the amount of time we needed to make sure that our purchase wasn’t impulsive. A decision made after waiting and thinking is typically a better decision.

Staying Current

Window shopping is one of the ways that we can stay abreast of current trends and styles. Merchandise design is a specialty in and of itself and consequently, we are often exposed to the newest thing when we walk past a storefront – a cleverly designed space to lure you into the shop where you are welcomed to spend your money.

Reinvent

Since many of us don’t have a ‘main street’ to stroll down, window shopping can take on a whole new meaning. Certainly, we browse through the mall from time to time – that counts. We can also internet browse by scrolling through Pinterest and the sites of our favorite stores. I will sometimes open those ad emails that get stuffed in my inbox and peruse the sale items… just looking to see if there is something that commands my attention.

Yes, there can be a downside to window shopping… if you have no impulse control – don’t do it. If you lean into greediness or jealousy – don’t do it. If you are resentful or bitter about your financial situation – don’t do it. Generally speaking, it’s a pleasant way to spend a little time now and then. If you’re in the market for something, need some inspiration or motivation, or just need to connect with the times, all you have to do is…

Window shop.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#71 Do It Again (Don’t Give Up)

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive.  hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#71

Do It Again ~ Don’t Give Up

Remember the proverb “If at first you don’t succeed, try, and try again”?  [attributed to William Hickson but thought to originate from Thomas Palmer]

And what about “There is no failure except in no longer trying” – Elbert Hubbard

Or “Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished  by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all” – Dale Carnegie

Perseverance

Many of the most successful people in the world attribute their success to perseverance and indeed, it is simply required to succeed on most levels. We hear time and time again, stories of people who applied numerous times, who auditioned over and over, or who replicated experiments nonstop until success was achieved. While we certainly must have limits and set boundaries for our emotional and physical health, as long as there is something to gain – having the grit to continue is typically a good idea.

Tipping Point

Is there a time to give up? Most experts agree that it is a healthy decision to redirect when we no longer have advantage in the endeavor. Obviously, if continuing would generate harm from either a physical or an emotional perspective – it’s O.K. to refocus in a different direction. The secondary question is about priorities.

Priorities

How important is this thing that you are trying to accomplish? Are you working to discover the next cancer treatment? Are you attempting to learn a new language? Getting into physical shape? Or learn a new crochet stitch? These are examples of things that may certainly be within your reach if you keep trying. Spend your perseverance energy on those things that serve your interests. Sometimes, the cost of continuing far exceeds the potential benefit. Focus on the things that you value and let go of those that you do not.

Extra Push

When you get frustrated or tired in your pursuit of a goal it’s great to have a motivation kit. It’s not as neat and tidy as it sounds because we often need different motivations for different tasks. When you’re going to the gym and want to give up – that’s when you hire a trainer or get a gym buddy. Create a support system that is also invested in your success – mom, dad, your best friend or your boss.  They are the people who often will encourage you – often blindly – in the direction of your dreams. Create a vision board to help keep you steered in the direction you want to go. Define your priorities and make a list – keep it in front of you at all times.

Whatever it is – go for it and find the strength to …

Do it again ~ don’t give up.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

 

#81 Attend a Mystery Night Out

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#81

Attend a Mystery Night Out

Are you a mystery lover? Do you like to solve problems? Are you seeking a new idea or an alternative for your next ‘date night’? While murder mystery ‘game night’ boxes have been around for decades, the idea has taken on a very different vibe with museums, galleries, restaurants, and others getting in on the fun.

Host at Home

If you want to invite a few people over for a fun night at home, consider a box game – readily available from a variety of places. You’ll get everything you need to invite a few friends over and role play a real life game of Clue. You don’t need the box though – you can download a game and all the necessary information to play.

Get Out

Not into hosting? Want to be a partygoer? Keep an eye out for a Murder Mystery night in your community. Local theaters, tourist train companies, galleries, libraries, and even small townships have hosted murder mystery nights with themes ranging from Casablanca style nights to Old West Gold Rush motifs.

Finding Fun

A simple Google search for “Murder Mystery Night in YourTown” will hopefully return a number of options in your community or nearby. Sites like Eventbrite and Yelp also returned local options and Yelp of course, offered some reviews and comments about the events themselves but word of warning for those comments: The fun is often determined by the people involved in the experience and as such – will be different for each group.

Social

Just a few days ago I touted the benefits of a game night and this is just a twist on that suggestion. It’s yet another way for couples to enhance time together in a unique way. It’s a great opportunity for families to get disconnected from electronics and do something fun. It’s an entertaining way to spend time getting to know new friends or building comradery with business associates or team members.

Do a quick search for opportunities in your area, gather one or more peeps, and …

Attend a Mystery Night out.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#101 Get Inspired

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#101

Get Inspired

Understanding that inspiration is an internal energy that drives action is an important concept. Dr. Wayne Dyer described it like this…

“Inspiration is when an idea gets hold of you and carries you where you are intended to go.”

Inspiration, because it comes from the inside – is an authentic energy; one that we need to find and listen to. How do you find inspiration as you move from day to day? Are you in the habit of noticing when you are inspired?

People

There are people in your life that encourage you to ‘do’ – not what they want you to do – but those things that you talk about doing. Listen and notice when what they are saying connects to an inner part of you… that is inspiration. For example, when someone encourages you to do something and you experience an inner drive to go ‘do’ it… that’s inspiration. “She inspired me to run a 5K.”

Nature

Nature is full of inspirational energy because it is living and moving. We can be inspired by what we see, hear, feel, and smell as we move through nature. I remember standing at the edge of the Grand Canyon and feeling quite insignificant against the backdrop of one of nature’s most compelling creations. That feeling tugged at my core in a way that inspired me to find a way to be more significant in the world… to give back.

The Arts

Dance, music, sculpture, paint, theater… all of the arts are filled with opportunities to discover inspiration. It may be color or form… posture or voice that moves you from the inside out. Even if the arts don’t inspire you to create art – they may tug at your heart in a way that moves you to support the arts or participate locally in a way that benefits others.

Words

Literature, poetry, and lyrics offer, perhaps the most common, form of inspiration. Quotes from these bodies of work are daily inspirations for thousands of people around the world today and there is no shortage of places to find them.

No matter the source, make it a habit to listen to your ‘heart’, the sensation that is activated when inspiration is triggered from your core. These internal vibrations are signals that your most authentic self has recognized something on which to focus your attention. It is the voice that allows you to…

Get Inspired.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#224 Go to an Art Museum

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#224

Go to an art museum

Very few of us are actually patrons of art. It seems as though if we aren’t creators or investors, our interest in art is fleeting or sporadic at best. If we live in a major metropolitan environment, it is likely that we were introduced to great art via a school trip where we were perhaps more interested in the time away from history and calculus than in the masterpieces displayed in the gallery.

Intrigue

I went to a gallery once on Rodeo Drive just for kicks but fell in love with the work they were featuring that week. I pretended to be able to afford the $10,000 price tag so that I could learn more about the artist’s technique. I think there’s a part of my psyche that wants to cover my walls in abstract creations full of color and light but my pocketbook doesn’t match my intrigue.

Refuge

And that’s the value of Art Museums… they are buildings full of walls that display a variety of talent; from old masters to new savants. On those days when you need a little inspiration or a pick-me-up, a museum offers refuge in the form of a bench in front of some form of art. It’s a place to step outside of yourself, to imagine another human being with a brush, pallet knife, or chisel in their hand – creating their own vision that became the piece you view. Somehow, it puts one’s own life in perspective via an unusual channel.

Give a little, Get a lot

Many museums are free to enter or only charge a small fee. Frequently they offer reduced entry fees for special professional affiliations (i.e., military, teachers, etc.) and most often for just a little more, will offer annual membership. It’s satisfying to know that your entrance payment keeps these national treasures safe, clean, and in good repair – our history depicted in paint, pen, and stone. Whether it’s curiosity, solace, or inspiration you seek – it’s possible you’ll find it if you…

Go to an Art Museum.

I love hearing your thoghts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#243 Start Your Day with Motivation

#243

Start your day with motivation

Your Daily Start

How do you start your day? Do you grab a cup of coffee and turn on the news? Pick up a newspaper? While it’s helpful to check traffic and weather to get your commute organized, it can be a real bummer reading or listening to the day’s headlines. When you get ready for your day do you pick through your closet and reject most of the pieces you grab? Are you frequently complaining about a bad hair day? Are you reeling with negative self talk about your weight, your wrinkles, or your schedule?

Make a Shift

If any of the above is true, is it any wonder that your day starts on a low note? Shifting that routine just a little my in fact completely turn around a dull perspective and give you a much more positive beginning each day.

Instead of listening to the news and all of its negativity, begin your day with something uplifting. Once again, we are living in a time when any information we want is at our fingertips via the internet making motivational messages only a few keystrokes away.

Watch & Listen

This is not a new concept… YouTube channels such as BeInspired and TED Talks are libraries for morning motivation. Searching motivational speakers will return inspiring lectures from Oprah Winfrey, Tony Robbins, Les Brown, Brene Brown, Brian Tracy, Marianne Williamson, and hundreds more. Almost any topic you find interesting is covered from finance and professional development to spirituality and personal growth. What area of your life do you want to grow? Grab your tablet, your smartphone, or tune your smart TV to a speech geared to energize your mental energy and listen to something inspiring instead of the morning news while you eat breakfast or prepare for the day.

The way we view life is greatly determined by the lens we begin our day with. Technology makes it easier than ever to make that choice for ourselves. Make your day better by making the decision to…

Start your day with motivation.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#292 of 365 Ways to live Easier, Happier, & More Productive

Sharing a daily life lesson, tip, or hack; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#292

Create a vision board

This suggestion is a leading recommendation of life coaches across the country. It went mainstream when the Law of Attraction merged into Pop Culture. Even Oprah got in the game when she included a Dream Board on her website.

A vision board is a collage encompassing all the things you wish to ‘attract’ into your life. The premise is that what you ‘focus’ on – you will create / attract in your reality. It’s not meant to act as a metaphoric ‘Jeannie in a bottle’… it’s meant to inspire you to engage in activities that lead you in the direction of the goals / vision of your life that you’ve included on your board. What do you want? Go ahead and include the material items you wish to attain. Spell out the words of the attributes you want to grow (i.e., patience, compassion, etc.) What is your dream job? Include a photo of a graduation or a photo of a location where you’d like to vacation. It’s a combination of photographs and words that will inspire you to keep going… to keep working.

A vision board uses the concept of ‘imagery’ to encourage and inspire. There is no right or wrong way to do it. I have encouraged clients to use photographs, cut pics out of magazines, find words that are meaningful, ideas that you want to expand upon. Ultimately, a vision board is a visual representation of where your FOCUS lies. Theoretically, what you focus on is where your energy goes. Why not create a physical representation to remind you what to focus on day by day? It’s easy… think about what you want; where you want to go; and what you want to achieve and …

Create a Vision Board.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.