Daily Ramblings – Daily Quote – Joseph Addison – The Law of Noninterference

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“There is nothing which we receive with so much reluctance as advice.” – Joseph Addison

Well, this is a great one. Have you ever heard of the law of noninterference? The law dictates that we not give unwanted advice or intrude on someone else without their permission.

I used to be really bad at this. Now, I’m still a little bad, but not as much. Someone would begin talking about a problem and my mind would begin racing to help them with a solution. I give it, the person gets defensive, and it is no longer about their problem that they are sharing. It is now about why they don’t want to use my magnificent solution and how stupid they are for not taking my advice. Have you ever been in this situation?

The best way to help people is by just listening to them. Most of us are smart enough to solve our own problems. In fact, we can typically come up with a pretty good plan to solve a current problem almost as immediately as it arrives in our lap. Give your friends, loved ones, and colleagues some credit. Maybe, they just want to share their problem to get it out there, get it off of their chest, minimize the problem by communicating the problem to someone else. This “unloading” can be quite rewarding psychologically.

So, listen to your friends when they discuss a problem with you. Really listen to them. Don’t rush to a solution and give it to them. They don’t want that. The only time your solution should be provided is if your friend or loved one asks for it. Then you are free to provide whatever help you can. You can do this because they’ve invited you in. Anything else and you violate the Law of Noninterference and step all over your friend or loved one’s feelings.

If they want your help, they will ask.

Until next time…

Dave

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Daily Ramblings – Ted Talk – Lisa Feldman Barret – Emotions

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Ok, folks. Here’s the first Ted Talk of the year. It’s all about emotions. I won’t put any spoilers here. Lisa Barrett provides some real insights into how our emotions work.

Enjoy!

See you next week!!

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Workout Diary

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Hi!

Today was another weightlifting day, conducting a full body workout using Planet Fitness’ quick workout area. It’s all machines, but very efficient. The circuit begins with a machine bench press and ends with a rope crunch machine. One set of 20 reps per body part is what I am working on this week.

I’m in really good shape, but after taking a month off, it’s wise, especially when you’re 54 years old to take it easy for the first week back. I like to be motivated to go to the gym, so I want to avoid the common muscle soreness that accompanies getting back to the workout. So, I take it easy my first month back.

This routine will involve working from one set to four sets in a month. Once completed, I’ll begin one of the routines I’ve scheduled out this year. The first routine I do is always going to involve bulking up. Then I’ll rotate back to a cutting routine, then a bulking routine, then a cutting routine, back and forth to keep the body guessing.

What are your goals? Do you want to get stronger, bigger, or cut? Whatever your goals are, a quick internet search will help you find what you’re looking for. Just hit Google, Youtube, and other resources out there and you’ll find a routine worth trying out. Work through the entire routine and rate whether it is worth coming back to. It’ll either work for you or it won’t.

Always take it easy when you head to the gym. If you’re a newbie and you’ve never worked out with weights, make sure your personal doctor clears you. Also, make sure you are cognizant of the exercises you can do or not. I had a back surgery in 2003 that must be considered when I workout. There are just some exercises that won’t work. If I squat it is more of a quarter squat then a full, deep squat because my lower back can’t tolerate that anymore. The same thing goes for deadlifts. I am very careful with these types of exercises because they are really risky for a guy with my condition. The same could be with you. Lifting weights with previous injuries is not impossible, you just have to know your limits and be careful. If something doesn’t feel right, use a different exercise. There are more than enough exercises to use to achieve the goals you want.

Well, that’s it for today folks.

See you tomorrow…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Daily Quote – Happiness is an Attitude

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“The art of being happy lies in the power of extracting happiness from common things.” – Henry Ward Beecher

Happiness is an attitude, folks. It isn’t about who is in your life, what you own, the places you visit, or the money in your bank account. It is about being in a state of happiness. I talk to a lot of people about this topic, including some of my family members, and it is surprising how many people “chase” happiness. In my humble opinion, you are either happy or you are not. There is no in between.

If it takes outside circumstances, things, or people to make you happy, I’m afraid you’ll be chasing happiness the rest of your life.

Happiness is developed with a sense of gratitude. Happiness is derived from simple things. For me, this life is a treasure–something to be grateful for. I am happy to be alive. I am happy to have had the experiences I have had. I am just happy. Happiness is derived from being thankful for whatever your present circumstances are and is unshakeable, even in the darkest hours.

Sure, we all experience loss. We lose friends. We lose loved ones. We break up and get divorced. These things are unhappy events in our lives, but should not gauge the happiness you feel inside. This reality involves loss. We will all die. Our friends will all die. Our husbands, wives, sons, and daughters will die. There is no escaping this inevitability.

When you think about the finite existence we experience in this life, why be anything but happy. If you believe in reincarnation like I do, what is there to worry about. The real “YOU” never ends–ever. You will be coming back for a do-over, again and again. You will meet friends and family over and over again as each of us returns to this place for more lessons and experience.

Soul is who you are. Soul is infinite. Soul never forgets. Soul is always learning and improving. Experience this life without regret, knowing you are gaining experience and moving forward one step at a time. You have all of the time in the world to experience everything there is. Some of these experiences will be chalked up as bad, while others are good. It takes this opposite nature of our experiences to truly relish what we learn, feel, experience, and gain wisdom from. Without the good or bad, there would be zero difference in our experiences. Be grateful for the bad, the good, and indifferent. They all contribute to you as Soul.

Happiness is an attitude. Actively look for things to be grateful for daily. Actively look for things to experience. Enjoy yourself, regardless of your current situation. Things will get better or worse, but these can’t affect your happiness. Over the long-term, you will get better, the bad and good will fade away into the tapestry of this lifetime.

So, love. Love others. Love yourself. Love the things you do. Love actively. Love. The only thing you will leave this place with is the love in your heart, nothing else. You won’t keep your money, you won’t keep your cars, your home, or even your loved ones. You will pass away and prepare for the next life, forgetting all that happened in this life when you returned, but…

Soul remembers. Love is all there is folks. Love others, contribute, love what you do, and love the life you are living, regardless of how hard or easy it is. There’s always something to be thankful for.

That’s it for today folks.

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Workout Diary

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Cardio was the focus of the day today.

Instead of doing my 7-minute workout, I decided to improvise. I shoveled snow off of our front driveway, our front porch, and our back deck walk area so my Mother can access her greenhouse. After about 30 minutes I had a good heart rate going and felt pretty accomplished because I helped out the family with a chore. Since my parents are both in their late 70s, this is one of those things I have to do, to help out around the house.

So, I knocked out two birds with one stone. I got my cardio, helped the family, and got a nice dose of Dopamine for doing something nice. Don’t be afraid to assess your day and utilize a little improvisation to achieve what you need to get done for the day. Now that we are in the New Year, exercise will be a daily priority. Doesn’t hurt when that exercise can be a job that needs to be done anyway.

I hope you are having a great New Year so far!

See you again, tomorrow.

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Daily Quote – Mindfullness

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“Amazing how we can light tomorrow with today.” – Elizabeth Barret Browning

For those of you who are pursuing a “mindful” life, know how important it is to truly live in the moment. We cannot correct the past; we can only fret the future. Worrying about the past paralyzes us with the fear of failure and sets up expectations of future issues based on what “happened before”. Worrying about the future only brings anxiety. How do we really control all of the infinite amounts of variables that truly predict what we will end up doing?

Every year I read Stephen Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. One of the major epiphanies for me is Covey’s focus on what he calls the Circle of Influence and the Circle of Concern. The Circle of Influence (COI) is you, focusing on the present moment, laying your plans and executing your priorities. The Circle of Concern (COC) is the past, the future, and all of those things, people, and events you have no control over. People that reside in the COI pay attention to what they can affect and that one thing only. They make plans, execute their plans, and adjust accordingly in the moment.

Those that live in the COC, are so worried about past mistakes they never endeavor to do anything, other than the mundane things that are not risky. They are more worried about what someone else is doing than they are, and they are consistently looking for something “out there” to alleviate their pain.

It is obvious which circle is more beneficial. Another interesting facet of this is the way these circles evolve. The COC people’s circle of concern, if not checked, will continue to expand and their lives will appear to be more and more out of their control. The CIC people, however, will experience greater freedom and control because their circle of influence will expand.

Folks, concentrate on you and stop worrying about the things you cannot control. Focus on the present moment. Dream about what you want, create a plan, and execute it, with the faith that there is enough for everyone. You will feel 100% better, more relaxed, and will feel more control over your life than you ever have before.

That’s it for today folks.

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Workout Diary

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Well, here we are. 2018!

I started my exercise routine yesterday, after the New Year. Since I took the entire month of December off from the gym, I’m beginning this year’s routine with some preparatory work to get used to daily exercise. I’m doing a full-body routine with 1 set per body part for 20 reps. This will help me avoid the dreaded DOMS (delayed onset of muscle soreness) and assist me with avoiding an injury early in the year.

I start with big muscles (legs, back, and chest), then progress to smaller muscle groups (shoulder, arms, calves, and abs). The routine is short and sweet and is just enough to get myself accustomed to a daily routine again. I recommend this to anyone just starting a new routine or getting back at it after a long break.

Why did I take December off? Well, I’m a sucker for sweets and goodies, all of which are available during the holidays. My Mom loves to bake and there is no shortage of cookies, cakes, and other tasty morsels. The holidays are just a wonderful time to relax, spend some time with family and friends, and recover from a year’s worth of gym time.

Now that we’re in the New Year, it’s time. Time to get the dust knocked off of the dumbbells and barbells, the exercise bikes, and the gloves and wraps. It’s time to crush 2018!!

Good luck to all of you with your fitness goals this year. Don’t quit! Stick to your plan and execute.

See you tomorrow!

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Daily Quote – Sea of Change

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“Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors.” – African Proverb

As we commence in the New Year, this is a particularly relevant quote. We do not get better when things are easy. It is the challenges we face, the hardships, the difficulties, the unexpected problems that truly contribute to our development. Without challenges, we stagnate and become complacent. We enjoy the lull as long as it lasts, only to be disrupted by yet another problem we did not foresee.

Embrace problems. Embrace challenges. Embrace difficulty. They are all part of the grand scheme of things and truly make life worth living. Without problems, challenges or difficulties life would be boring right? Without problems, challenges or difficulties the victories we achieve would be empty.

Writing, drawing, music are all creative endeavors. They all require practice, patience, and a methodical means of putting them together. The book begins with one sentence, the drawing with one stroke of a pen or pencil, the music with one note. The sentences, strokes, and notes come together in a unique voice only known by the creator.

Creation is difficult work. It requires patience, contemplation, and an innate ability to adapt to changing circumstances. Patience is probably the most important aspect of creation because you can’t rush creativity. Creativity visits us and gives us yet one more idea to put in place, the final result being the novel, poem, or tune.

As each of you pursues your goals this year, take time to realize that your path to a goal’s achievement will not be a straight one. It will require you to detour around obstacles, learn new things about yourself, and deal with the challenges inherent in the goal you have set for yourself.

If you’re looking to lose weight, you’ll deal with the pain of hunger, sore muscles, and temptation after temptation. If you’re looking to write a book, you’ll deal with writer’s block, the challenge of self-editing and rewriting tasks, and the self-doubt that arises whenever we create anything for others to read or listen to. Whatever goal you have set for yourself, there will be a price to pay for the goal’s achievement. We must pay for what we receive. There are no shortcuts.

As you embark on your New Year, keep these things close to your heart. Goals are achieved by those who are persistent, consistent, and willing to pay the price for the goals they have set for themselves. Goals are achieved by those who are willing to face challenges and overcome them. Goals are achieved by remaining focused on their achievement despite the numerous distractions that raise their heads.

I wish each of you a terrific New Year and hope the seas you travel this year to attain your goals are as rough as they need to be to help you make a permanent and beneficial change in your life.

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Merry Christmas!!!

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Well, folks, we have come to the end of Christmas 2017. Merry Christmas to all of my friends and family who wished me a great Christmas on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, and LinkedIn. It was a great Christmas for the Gardner Family and one I will remember for some time. I hope all of you had as great a day as I did. The above picture is my family (- my sister who was taking the picture) right before digging into a homemade feast of Goose, Mashed Potatoes, Squash, Cranberry Sauce, and Dressing!

I had a great time with my family, had some great food (courtesy my Mom), and just relaxed, enjoying the time we had together over the last few days. Tomorrow everyone will be back to work and the day-to-day buzz will drown out the solitude some of you may have experienced. For the remained of this month you’ll be getting prepared for New Year’s celebrations, tidy up last-minute details at work, coordinate your plans and get ready for the big “ball drop” day.

For the remainder of the year, I’ll be continuing my battery re-charge, coupled with a lot of reading and contemplating the goals I have for 2018. Some I am working on currently, others are yet to be discovered. My days will be filled with dreaming, contemplating, and planning. They’ll also be filled with watching the DVDs my Dad and I got, reading some of the books I got, spending time with Mom and Dad working on one of the two jigsaw puzzles we received, and maybe, just maybe, playing a little of the Xbox game my niece sent me. It’ll be a great time!

Recently, I reconnected with a friend. This guy served with me in the Berlin Brigade (West Germany before unification). He reached out to me on Facebook “out of the blue” and it’s like we were never apart. Obviously, we both have a little grayer in the temples and beards than we did “way back when”, but he’s the same guy that used to kick my butt in chess on a daily basis. That was a special “Christmas” present that was totally unexpected. I’ll be spending some time with him over the next week as well.

Wherever you are, a new year brings hope for better times, working on new habits and getting rid of some bad ones. The new year brings new experiences, new jobs, getting married, having babies, making new friends, graduating from college, and so many more wonderful things. It’s doctor, dentist, and optometrist appointments, it’s grocery shopping, it’s a new promotion, it’s moving on to a new job. Perhaps your new year will bring moving to a new place and start over or donate time to your favorite charity. The new year presents endless possibilities, waiting to be discovered.

Enjoy the last few days of 2017.

Prepare for 2018.

Love one another. Cherish your friends. Appreciate the place you call home, your family, your pets, and all of the wonderful things in your life. Be grateful for the blessings that this life brings. Be grateful for the laughter, even the tears. Be grateful for the God-given talents you have and the ones that are waiting for you to uncover. Be grateful.

As we wind down 2017, I am grateful to you, my readers. I wish all of you the very best over the last few years of 2017. I hope you attain even greater heights of love and happiness in 2018.

For those of you that are having a tough time right now, remember to cherish even the smallest things. Life will get better for you. Life always does. During these times of trouble, be patient. Trouble will pass and good times will return. Make an extra effort to give of yourself during these troubled times. You’ll find that your giving will be returned in one way or another.

I’ll post again on New Year’s Day. I’ll see you then.

Until next time…

Dave