This week’s challenge is another easy one (maybe): Read a book that’s been sitting on your shelf, desk, or nightstand and finish it this week.
In the comments, tell me the book you read.
Until next time…
“If you can dream something, you can do it. As long as you do not align your actions with your dreams, you are not fulfilling your destiny.” — Harold Klemp The Language of Soul
All of us have aspirations to be something more. Why do so many people give up on them?
Some may think life’s responsibilities are more important. Others lose hope because they have had some bad luck. Still others feel like that life has passed them by.
Remember when you were a kid and nothing was impossible? I think that is what all of us need to recover the dreams of our youth. We need that childhood curiosity. We need to capture that wonder and imagination that made everything bright and wonderful.
All of us can achieve that state. Once you do, you’ll realize you still have so much to do, to give, and to learn.
I was at our local Sam’s club yesterday. I had lunch there after I finished shopping. Next to me was a grandma and her grandson. She was spooning some frozen yogurt to him. The look on his face when that cold treat hit his mouth was priceless. There was another group of two women who sat down in front of me. They had frozen yogurt too. I asked the lady if it was any good. She said it was and was pleased that she and her daughter were enjoying some frozen yogurt together.
I make it a habit to get out and about during the day. It’s nice to have these little interactions with people. I enjoy interacting with them and sharing part of their day. Sometimes opportunities do not present themselves for these types of interactions, so I take a few moments to get to know the cashier, waiter or waitress that is serving me. I joke with them or tell them how great their food or service is.
How does this relate to my original point? The childhood state of mind I’m talking about is about enjoying the small things. Remember when walking through a store, getting some ice cream, or going to a movie was the happiest moment in your life? Recapture that. That’s where the magic is. Capture that feeling of wonder and excitement.
When you can rekindle your childhood imagination, you’ll see things differently. You’ll redevelop that sense of wonder that made the mundane magical, the impossible possible, and open your mind to an infinite amount of possibilities. Without the fear of failure, because you could do it all when you were a kid right?
Try this out. Get out there and be present. If you are in the grocery store, enjoy the colorful packages, the smells, the textures. If you are in a mall, look at the people, engage with them. If you are at the movies, get yourself some popcorn and enjoy every kernel. Lose yourself in the film and enjoy the time you have with the person you are with.
Being present helps us enjoy the details and to relish everything with all of our senses. When you can perfect this state, you will reinvigorate your life. You’ll cultivate that childhood wonder when everything is brand new.
Use your imagination. Think of all the things you could do if you couldn’t fail. Imagine the possibilities.
I hope you try this out. It is a wonderful way to regain some of that innocence, joy, creativity, and openness we had as kids. It’s a great place to be.
Have a great Saturday.
Until next time…
“Imagination is more important than knowledge.” – Albert Einstein
Did you know that most of Einstein’s Theories were thought experiments? A thought experiment is using one’s imagination to conduct an experiment. Can you imagine that? (no pun intended). I often picture Einstein sitting at his desk with pipe smoldering, eyes closed, and thinking up the theory of relativity or gravity bending light? What a mind!
Another topic this quote brings up for me is the act of visualization. Do you realize that a good portion of our Olympic athletes and professional sports players visualize exactly what they will do before they do it? I remember a Winter Olympics a few years back and watching a member of the U.S. Ski team visualizing her entire run in her mind before she did it.
Visualization is a powerful tool for any of us. You can use visualization to replay a scene in your mind you would like to fix. The late Dr. Stephen Covey, in his book “The 7 habits of Highly Effective People”, describes how he helped his son perform better in football by visualizing passing the ball perfectly. He also worked with his son on a tactic that would help him drop a bad play that just occurred by snapping his wrist band. Imagine how powerful that is. Dr. Covey calls this process, “…rewriting the script.” He was referring to the scripts we have playing in our mind. Another name for these scripts is a neural pathway. You see your brain is so efficient at conserving energy it automates everything. It automates your thoughts, your feelings in certain situations, how to open a door, how to drive a car, and how to use a knife, spoon, and fork.
We can use the power of visualization ourselves. We can envision something we want and visualize how that future scene will look like, smell, feel, and sound. In fact, the more senses you can imagine in this desired scene, the more powerful it is. Another aspect of the brain is that it doesn’t know the difference between these visualizations and reality. Do you doubt that? Imagine biting into a lemon and see how much you salivate. It works.
I am a fledgling author. I visualize myself at a book signing. A simple visualization with a stack of books on either side of me. I can feel the pencil. I can smell the newness of my books. I can taste the coffee I have next to me that I bought at the Barnes & Noble cafe in another part of the store. I see the smiles of the people that are in line and exchange pleasantries with the people marveling at my book and wanting to shake hands with the author D.L. Gardner (this will be my pen name). This is all it takes. Visualize your most important goal every day and your mind will work night and day to help you achieve that goal. Why does your mind do this you ask? It is called cognitive dissonance. When your mind sees a difference between what you have now and what you want or visualize, it begins working on strategies and action steps you can take to eliminate this dissonance. This dissonance occurs when your brain recognizes differences in the present with the visualization you give it of the future. Your brain sees this visualization as “real”. Subsequently, it will do all it can to alleviate the stress that this dissonance causes.
You can use your imagination to create anything you want. I have a few fiction authors who I interact with. How do you think they create meaningful prose for their readership? You guessed it—they create their worlds, the scenes, the scenarios, their characters, and the dialogue with their imagination. For some of you this may be a HUGE no-brainer. Think about the imagination of the greats like Disney, Faulkner, King, and Tolkien. Imagine creating the worlds they have created. It is possible.
Your imagination is a powerful tool for creating poetry, books, new devices, and programs. It can create a new business that serve untold thousands. It is all available to each of us. We only have to use it and let it run free. Then, it takes the courage to pursue these creations despite our self-doubt, the naysayers, and all of those boogie men we create in our mind to defeat ourselves.
When I am deeply involved with a visualization or use my imagination, I feel like a kid sometimes. I feel like I can do anything I want. It really is a wonderful thing to imagine and visualize the future you want for you and your family. It is one of those human powers that allowed us to utilize fire, build the steam engine, and exploit the electron.
Try this out with something you want to do. What have you got to lose?
Until next time…
“One of the most responsible things you can do as an adult is to become more of a child.” – Dr. Wayne. W. Dyer
This quote is terrific. Children are so open, so creative, so inherently happy—until they are socialized and their dreams and imagination dwindle away. To truly live, we have to capture that child-like curiosity, happiness, and imagination. This life can be a truly rich experience if we can only get these things back.
“I cannot always control what goes on outside. But I can always control what goes on inside.” – Dr. Wayne W. Dyer
This is about our internal attitudes and character. This eludes to one of yesterday’s quotes by Gandhi and Steven Covey. We cannot control what other people do, the weather, or world events. We can only control the way we react to these things. If you are unattached to things you will find that your life will become much less stressful and easier. If you are attached to things, it is like being an inflexible tree. When the winds of change come blowing, the inflexible tree will be snapped. The same things apply to us. We have to be flexible, take everything with a grain of salt, realizing that everything is in its rightful place in the worlds of God and that God will never, ever give us a problem we are not capable of handling.
“Remember that your imagination is yours and yours alone. You have the inborn capacity to use it in any way that you choose. No one else is responsible for your imagination. Anything placed in your imagination and held there ultimately becomes your reality.” – Dr. Wayne W. Dyer
Have you ever done the experiment of imagining biting into a lemon? This is one of the typical thought experiments I think everyone has been hit within their psychology 101 class. When you imagine biting into a lemon your mind communicates this to your body and you start to salivate. The same thing happens when we worry about things, get angry about things, feel afraid, or sad or any number of emotions. We create them. This all drifts down from our emotional level of thinking and comes right into the physical body.
If you want a pleasant and calm life, imagine a pleasant and calm life and let go of the negative things, the anger, the jealousy, the fear, the attachment to a thing, place, or an idea, the lust for things. If you can focus on positive things, things that you are grateful for, happy, or excited about, your life will follow these imaginative thoughts. It’s the way this world—your world—works.
I hope you enjoyed today’s quotes.
See you tomorrow!
“Everything you can imagine is real.” – Pablo Picasso
“Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success.” – Pablo Picasso
“Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone.” – Pablo Picasso
What these quotes mean to me:
Today’s quotes revolve around Pablo Picasso. The first addresses our God-given gift of creativity. If you can imagine something you can create it.
The second quote addresses the utility of planning to achieve our goals. It is really difficult, if not impossible to attain any goal or achieve anything without some semblance of a plan. The plan doesn’t have to be intricate, but it has to have some measurable steps that you can track. Then it’s nothing more than doing the little steps from beginning to end to achieve what we set out to achieve.
This last one is also really good. It addresses procrastination and priorities. If you prioritize what is really important to you and execute on those priorities as if today was your last day, you’ll do a great deal in this lifetime.
Well, I hope everyone’s Monday is going well. See you tomorrow!!