MATTERS OF FACT!

Love, as a necessary construct is missing. When I observe society and consider our present state of affairs I find that many of our social ills are the direct result of a lack of love. Our politics and policies would look very different if we insisted on compassion and empathy as the framework for governance.

Liberals and conservatives occupy the landscape like they are the only choices we have available. These two predominant points of view, in their present makeup, fail to accurately present the growing concerns of the vast majority of our population. As awareness, of the deep departure from the principles of our founding, matures, more and more people are wanting to return to our roots.

As diversity is touted as the pinnacle of enlightenment we discover that “political correctness” has only camouflaged the corruption of special interests. Back-room deals, constitutional ignorance, and an out of control elite class has run our country off course. There’s a rising mandate to recover from years of dysfunction and abuse of power.

We’re living in an echo chamber where we have been trading deficits with imaginary progress. We have sliced and diced our way into divisions and clicks that can only be described as mass detachment from reality. We have erected totems that represent attitudes of self-centeredness and selfish thinking that epitomizes the worst of humanity. For all of our accumulated knowledge, we lack the basic restraints needed for recognizing the unalienable rights of every living person.

It’s time to … 

I’m not inviting or encouraging nullifying any genuine progress that is universally beneficial, without violation, and non-threatening. I am advocating for authentic and transparent leadership, accountability to our oaths, and a willingness to respect our principles as we heal ourselves from the wounds of manipulation. I’m promoting personal responsibility as the means to charter chaotic waters. I’m saying we have not yet found our best selves.

The acknowledgment that what we’re doing isn’t working as a society is the beginning of our rebirth. What lies ahead is alterable. Personalities that provide lip service and false promises are losing their grip on our people. More and more rhetoric is being dissected and schemes to strip us of our power is being uncovered. A return to love affords us the opportunities we need to correct our path.

I’m excited and filled with hope for the future before us. I believe in our ability to regain our destiny. As we face our challenges we do so with the determination that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness is still a possibility for all of us. We have a lot of work to do but, the work has already begun. Let us not grow weary in the worthy endeavor of triumphing over times of prevailing corruption.

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How To Know IF You’re Seeing Things Correctly!

All seeing eye Max Pixel

Image courtesy of Max Pixel

I’m a mixed breed! Accepting that is as pure as it gets for me. Giving up trying to be a thoroughbred, of any kind, has freed me from pining about pedigree.

 

Recognizable Specificity

I don’t fit everywhere. Thankfully, I no longer want to. The assumed task of pleasing everyone is an indomitable endeavor. And, I have never been content forfeiting me. Approval can be fleeting and laden with hypocrisy. When other people celebrate you, only because you accommodate their desires, conflict is inevitable. Peace of mind can’t happen in your absence.

I know people who listen to only one type of music. That just doesn’t work for me. Rhythms and lyrics affect me, like all mediums do, and I want to have a say in the feeling I’m experiencing when I’m listening, reading, or observing. I’ve learned to appreciate difference, any single point of view could never account for my multiple channels. I have a simple requirement, I insist on being lifted up.

I avoid things that bring me down, make me conscious of negativity, or disrupt my intention to reside in a state of harmony. A single focus doesn’t mean narrow in scope. Paintings, books, science, nature, an ambient restaurant, a small child, or a cloud formation are just a few of the many opportunities for tranquility. Life is full of beauty.

Every vibe isn’t virtuous. Anything that causes me to turn-on myself has slipped past my radar. I know immediately if I’m berating, belittling, or hating on me I’m  suffering vision impairment. And, whenever I’m flirting with consternation, pouring out wrath on others, smoke is in my eyes. Clear vision builds you and others.

CORRECTIVE LENSES

Anger has never had 20/20 vision. I speak from experience. I was angry for much of my life. I plunged into being angry at my anger. Much of my anger was justified. But here is the problem; anger, left to its own devices, blurs vision. We can be upset for good reason but, unless we are willing to turn our passion into purpose, we are left to stew in destructive heat.

Eye exam staff sargent Jason McCasland USAF

Image courtesy of SS Jason McCasland via USAF

Anger is not an invitation to hate, though it is often interpreted that way. It is, in fact, a call to action. Anger is a compliment of trust. Its simply requesting our attention. Desiring to show us a way forward. Giving us opportunities for growth. Providing insight to our unique set of challenge solving skills. Anger chooses us, to make something better.

Being betrayed and violated is disturbing. Almost as troubling as personal dysfunction. When we are done wrong… (Hey, it happens, and will undoubtedly happen again) its decision time. Just because someone decides to live in the basement is no reason to move out of the penthouse. We can be thankful that we won’t be investing anymore of ourselves in things we don’t want in our lives.

As Maya Angelou so ably instructed, “When people show you who they are, believe them.” I believe in forgiveness, redemption, and second chances; I couldn’t be here if I didn’t. But disrespect and broken trust leaves little to build on. Repairs are possible with collaboration. I try to remember that what people do is not as important as why they do it.  Understanding that what happened might be the best there is in the moment.

When I resist the temptation to cause pain and intentionally strive to serve my mission, serving others, that’s how I know I’m seeing things correctly.

How do you see it?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How To Determine The Questions To Ask!

question-mark- pixabay.png

Image courtesy of pixabay.com

It was a friendly environment and the speaker seemed warm enough. I was about to ask my question when… what if it’s a stupid question? The popular adage, “the only dumb question is the one you don’t ask” won’t actually protect you from uncontrollable sneering. I decided to forgo the chance at enlightenment, opting instead, for self-preservation.

THE BUFFET TABLE

The constant barrage of voices vying for influence, in our minds, can be daunting. We can grow weary and become vulnerable. Or, we can become frustrated and dismiss potential opportunities to increase understanding. Whether we slip into one of these, or some other immobility, we can’t ignore the lingering desire to learn. Being “in the know” is empowering. Questions abound but are only virtuous if they lead to solutions.

What scares us is the thought of feeling belittled, inadequate, or incompetent. Wanting to avoid negative feelings can be a strong driver. I disagree with the old saying, “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.”  While fear has a place of honor,  it is often out of place. Questions are a key component of any progressive strategy. I question myself first, then I test my answer in the form of a question to others.

Contrary to pervasive confusion, answers are not hiding. I’m convinced answers wait patiently to be discovered.  They are positioned in merited investigation. Whenever I’m struggling with advancing toward my aspirations it’s always because I’m not asking the right questions. Intuition is at peek performance when it suggests highly personalized interrogation. We benefit significantly when we realize the gift of the question that just won’t go away.

PORTION CONTROL

The people who stock the buffet have no responsibility for what we put on our plates. One of my favorite saying from Maya Angelou is, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” I get her meaning. Completely. However, I’ve had to tweak its power.

What we feel is the result of the invitation being extended. How we feel is the result of the invitations we accept. Nobody can make us attach to a feeling. In order for any feeling to resonate it has to be met with agreement. If someone hands us a helping of negativity and we “know” what they’re saying isn’t true, we can turn down the invitation. If we think there’s some truth in what’s being said, we are likely to overeat junk-food.

Partial truths are loaded with hidden calories and lead to unwanted weight gain. Our positive thoughts, and good intentions, go straight to our waste-lines when they are not allowed to flourish in healthy feelings. In my quest for personal excellence, I have come to understand, my well-being is not only found in what I’m eating but in how much of it I’m devouring. I try to ask only those questions I actually want the answers to.

DIGESTION

Our world is filled with limitless information and yet, solutions remain aloof. The endless chatter seems fermented in knowing exactly, what the other person needs to do, to make things better. When remedies beg for something more we need to ask a different question. I refuse to let anyone, by coercion or otherwise, take away my right to inquire.

The noteworthy work of aligning our good intentions with our prevailing feelings demands we know the value of questions. When my best answers don’t change my trajectory, I rephrase the question. If my findings don’t improve things for me, and those around me, I find another question. Being in the dark gives me heartburn.

I determine the questions to ask based on whether or not things are working the way I want them to. The most important questions are the ones you ask yourself!

Any questions?

I demonstrate my Q & A journey in my book: If Only I Had A Dad,  http://amzn.to/2lMHJ9t

 

 

 

 

 

What You Can Do Without A Father!

The gash on my innards was remarkable! It affected everything about me.  My lack of understanding led me to misdiagnose who I really am. Every time I retold my story, adding polish and pizzazz,  I increased the strength of the lies. I was open to trickery and manipulation. Thank God for false teeth.

father & daughter by apdk flickr

Image courtesy of apdk via flickr

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

My grandmother put me on a chair thinking I would watch her through the window as she hung the clothes on the line. I was a year and half old. Instead, I climbed over two wash tubs and into the wringer washing machine. Mimicking her, I stuck my hand into the wringer. Half way up my arm the wringer kept spinning, round and around, burning a nice scare into my forearm. She came in to find me face down in the water.

As my body grew the wound on my arm grew too. I’m use to it, of course, but everyone who sees it wants to know what happened. Being the consummate communicator that I am, I fashioned a story of a trip to New Orleans where as a young man I wrestled alligators. Toothless, mind you. Getting pinned underneath the ferocious creature, his rough skin tore up my arm. Hey, I convinced quite a few, before I would come clean!

Things happen to us and they stay with us. Childhood issues become adult problems. We make up stories because they sound better than the truth. We learn to talk about it in a way that garners sympathy to avoid the questions we don’t have answers to. What we really want is to find resolution for our dilemmas.

The first step to coming clean is to admit there’s nothing wrong with you. Our thoughts and feelings might be askew but that’s not who we are. The issues that often plague us didn’t originate with us. We deal with generational and cultural dynamics that must be taken into account in order to be intentional about resolving inner conflicts.

I had a hole inside, the shape of my father. His abandonment of me caused an emptiness that sprouted and flourished. Permeating every segment of my life. I gave myself an unconscious pass. I didn’t know, for many years, the root of my anguish. I artificially inseminated with sex, substances, rock & Roll, and religion and nothing birthed peace of mind.

When we are able to identify the ramifications of our beginnings we are able to focus on our endings. The scars will always be there but the pain doesn’t have to be. We don’t have to implode, repeat self-destructive habits, or remain chained to propaganda. We are not wrong to see what’s right. It’s wonderful to work together, to correct errors, with the people who participated in the mistakes but, it’s not required.

OUR POWER IS IN BEING WILLING TO FATHER OURSELVES

My father died without me ever getting to know him. I needed him to change my life I was in serious trouble. Let’s get real; whether your father is dead or alive moving on is your responsibility not his. We can’t hate on our fathers without hating on ourselves and becoming like them as a result.

Angry by Katmary on flickr

Image courtesy of Katmary via flickr

My third step father was the most miserable human being I ever knew. He was angry and bitter. Jealous, insecure, and competitive. I could go on with an endless list of negatives. At times, I hated his very existence. I only lived with him for a few years, leaving home at fifteen, but, I was influenced by his behavior.  I was not happy when some of his characteristics showed up in me.

Managing dysfunction doesn’t provide a path to change. I learned, the hard way, that what you hate is deficient. It’s what you love that’s fruitful. Spending time trying to alter the thinking, attitudes, and actions of others are obstacles of distractions. We can’t rewrite our own stories when we are preoccupied with the stories that other people are holding on to.

Transformation happens when we change our feeling, of being defective or damaged, to a feeling of being whole. A primary function of fatherhood is to validate children. If that wasn’t executed we have to take matters into our own hands. We give ourselves permission to rise above broken trust. If we don’t we’re apt to be a continuation of the things we despise.

Here’s the kicker, our fathers may be locked in their own fatherlessness. They may not be capable or willing of being any different. We have to make a choice about what we will do separate from them. When we accept our own value we are able to affirm ourselves, gain clarity, and establish a sense of worthiness. We then start attracting people and things based on a new paradigm.

LIFE IN THE FATHERLESS LANE

I was always excited to listen to him talk. He was someone I highly respected. I loved his concepts. Then he said this: “You don’t get what you want in life – you get what you are”. I didn’t want to be friends with him anymore. I thought, he couldn’t mean that. How could that be true?  I immediately began to wrestle those words to the ground. Guess what? Those words are frightfully correct.

In the sanctuary of our private worlds reside the potential for everything that is possible. What we believe about ourselves determines what we experience. How we see ourselves is how we see everything else. When things didn’t work out the way I hoped it wasn’t because they shouldn’t, it was because they couldn’t. Everything in life operates by principle and not by luck.

Fathers are impact players. When our fathers are missing or fail everyone involved is affected. Even if we lose a father by premature death his absence has consequences.  We are either very thankful for who they are or very hurt by who they weren’t. Good or bad we deal with the circumstances surrounding our relationships with our fathers.

Fatherless men can be unsure of themselves, acting timid or overcompensating. Living in a conundrum to love women without stealing their power and struggling to mentor their children without abuse. Women without fathers can battle low self-esteem, fear abandonment, or develop negative coping skills. Men and women can operate out of greed rather than contribution. These are only a few of the many pitfalls we can fall into and there are exceptions to every rule.

sunset victory by couguar on flickr

Image courtesy of couguar via flickr

I failed miserably before I succeeded. I experienced setbacks in love, life, and vocation until I dealt with my father issues. Don’t worry about what is behind you, be concerned with what is in front of you. And, don’t fret over people who choose to only see your past. That’s all about where they are not where you are. There’s no need to fear moving on.

All adversity has optional outcomes. We can choose to be the victim or the victor! 

For more information on personal transformation pick up a copy of my book,

If Only I Had A Dad: Finding Freedom From Fatherlessness. http://amzn.to/2lMHJ9t

 

 

 

 

Is Your Flight Overbooked?

LIFE FLIGHT 

According to the Air Traffic Controllers Association, 87,000 flights crisscross the United States, every day. With a population of over 300 million people there are countless dreams and aspirations filling our air space. Gifts and talents, robed in passion, attempt to take-off and land successfully every minute of the day. Over-booking is more common than the average person notices.

possibilities

Image courtesy of Janine Forder via LinkedIn

Over half a million people were voluntarily or involuntarily denied boarding a scheduled commercial flight, in 2015. (Bureau of Transportation Statistics) If there was a way to actually see, how many people had their dreams grounded, we could all share in the collective disappointment. It’s empowering indeed to be able to order discouragement off your plane.

It’s legal for Airlines to overbook flights for the sole purpose of insuring their success. They need us but, aren’t afraid to abuse us, when it serves them. We can fill our plane with too much and too many. We can’t do everything; we aren’t meant too. It’s all to common to spread ourselves so thin that we aren’t proficient at anything. Many of us are too busy to be successful. Talk about turbulence! Rising above the clouds is about being able to do more of what you want and less of what you don’t.

Some things are not within our control. Many things are. Sometimes we have excess baggage. We can carry it with us, if we are willing, to pay the high rate for the privilege. If we will take the time to analyze, value verses cost, we can streamline our travel experience. Things like self-doubt, fear, and intimidation are unnecessary items. Removing them from our luggage makes for a more pleasurable flight.

Flight Path

The unexpected can happen, anytime. Careful planning can help minimize negative effects or manage jubilation. If what we don’t want shows up, it can throw us into chaos. Even getting what we hope for, can catch us off guard, and cause our plane to shake, rattle, and roll.

orbit-free-pic-on-pixabay

Image courtesy of pixabay

Prioritizing requires honesty and  sound decision-making. Keeping goals out in front eases inner conflicts. The new trend is to manage tasks instead of time. We should protect ourselves from the illusion, that all activity is productive. We can work tirelessly without getting the results we’re looking for. Doing things that lose sight of our mission is a trap to be avoided. Most people relax once takeoff is accomplished. We mustn’t forget the importance of landing. Success never just happens.

Our daily routine must include an inspection of our flight controls. If we hope to get air-born and safely touch down in our deepest aspirations, it’s a good idea to insure everything is working properly. Repairs are wisely done on the ground. Lots of effort is used up on things that aren’t getting us any closer to accomplishing our dreams. Many things that are distasteful or unpleasant, must be attended to, if we hope to see progress.

TRAVEL AGENT

I used to travel often. Back when flight crews were fun and the skies were friendly. More often than not, nowadays, your treated like a cold-hearted obligation or even an inconvenience. How dare you board our plane with any expectation of quality care! Too many service providers have forgotten, or decided against, great service. I appreciate quality and attention to detail. Something I encourage is a customer first mentality.

hangglider by pampy96 on commons.wikimedia

Image courtesy of pampy96 via commons.wikimedia

Treat yourself the way you want others to treat you! Then treat others the same way. Distance yourself from haters and dissenters. You are within your rights to bump them from your flight. Your success might depend on your willingness to exercise courage. One reason there are so many flights is because everyone is not going to the same place.

Success will forever be a foreign country to some. Once you decide where you are going you can work on your passport. Since we define success for ourselves we educate accordingly. Jack Canfield and many other experts travelers, offer this frequent flyer tip; “success is found in your daily routine.”

To avoid getting bumped from life, pick up a copy of my book: http://amzn.to/2lMHJ9t

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Defining Moments!

The exercise was clear enough; list seven defining moments in your life.

What wasn’t so clear were the actual seven moments that defined me. Having never taken the time to pinpoint the life events that had altered/corrected my life left me to breathe in without exhaling.

euphoria by h.koppdelaney on flickr

Image courtesy of h.koppdelaney via flickr.com

Contemplating my landmark thoughts, feelings, decisions, and life experiences left me reeling to think, feel, decide, and experience the moment I was in. How do I wade thru the years of ups and downs, successes and failures, and the happy and sad times to declare just which occurrences qualified for such prestigious notoriety?

Thick fear appeared to big to mess with. What if I’m not defined? What are the undeniable instances of impact? How many times did I feel the music but didn’t dance? Do I need to acknowledge the magical personal revelations that remained bottled up inside with no corresponding action? What if I don’t have any historical changes to herald?

Leaning into my pilgrimage I methodically visited with the highways and byways of my past. The mountain tops and valley’s flashed across the memory screen of my mind. There were highs and lows falling on my think-tank like hard rain. Thunder and lightning called up familiar emotions wrapped in wanted and unwanted thoughts.

The questioning was offensive. How dare I cross-examine my own authenticity so vehemently. Who’s side am I on, anyway? Negative energy attempted to quell the monumental whisper trying to be recognized. At my core cried the mature infant; I am here and I want to speak.

Image result for cross examination

Image courtesy of T.H.Matteson via wikipedia.org

For much of my life I had consented to the chaotic cloud that hovered overhead blocking the light. I inwardly twisted in despair. Wait! Something is happening here. A defining moment? No doubt! A new thing was emerging from a womb previously denied.

I was a man who had miscarried again and again. The kick of life forbidden wore scars into the walls of my stomach. And I remembered the day I chose to live. I struggled narrowing the chain of events into specific times. It had to be done, in order to square myself with all that had been, with all that is to be.

Yielding to the notion that something was missing was only a fabrication altered the direction I was heading. The affirmation, clarity, and worthiness I had searched for resided within me. Rejection and abandonment were only distractions presenting themselves as permanent fixtures. I am in defining mode!

External factors are impotent to declare identity. They can only reflect what we believe about ourselves. I am hearing my voice rise above the mob screams telling me to stay where I am. Demanding I forfeit the invitation to come up higher. Rebellion delivered the virtue needed to proclaim, NO MORE! I moved on because I could.

I permitted the grief and tears over my neglected reality. The vigil was standing room only. I barely got all of me in the room. Sensing the finality of separation I was left the opposite of cold. Memories would persist but things will never be the same. With lightness in my chest, a dry mouth, and unimaginable relief I had won the Spelling Bee.

My list now flowed in unexpected ease. Multitudes of question marks gave up their seats for periods and exclamation points. Running so fast, focused on catching up to my liberation, I didn’t immediately realize the pain was gone. I had broken through, puncturing, misappropriated denotations.

designer-labels-flicker

Image courtesy of UpSticksNgo Crew via flickr.com

What I had  been hiding behind were articles of deception. Designer labels stitched together in the sweatshop of fallacy. I wore unwanted, unlovable, unworthy like required dress code. I window shopped purpose, clarity, and worthiness desiring to be fitted for a custom, made for me, life. Wrinkle free, permanent press, only disguised a disheveled heart, broken by the wardrobe, of dysfunctional dynamics.

Aligning with divine intention censored my emptiness. Our blueprint doesn’t call for us to be sidelined, left out, and excluded from the acquisition of the finer things in life. We’re not tinder for someone else’s fire. When there is no expectation of peace and harmony disappointment reigns supreme. Dissonance necessitates a paradigm shift

We are worthy of a rich, rewarding, and abundant life! 

     All defining moments have the inherent purpose of facilitating this truth!

What are your defining moments?

Be-younger.com on flickr

Image courtesy of Be-younger on flickr.com

 

 

 

 

 

Got Time For A Heart Attack?

OK! I took time out to have a heart attack.8576195628_0df9f2a68e_z

Don’t cry. On second thought, go ahead and cry. They tell me there’s no visible signs of damage to my heart. I told them they need a machine that will show heart-breaks not just heartaches. My physical organ only tells part of my story. Metaphorically, I have plenty of scar tissue on this ole ticker of mine.

They asked me what I thought caused my heart attack. Having never experienced chest pains or any other symptoms, I told them I had just released a book about a week ago and the sales were so disappointing that it clogged my arteries and sent me to the ER.

They said, that’s probably not the cause. Totally ignoring a possible intangible truth, they launched, into a diatribe on how important it will be to switch to a heart healthy diet, and an exercise regimen. You can see what I’m dealing with here.

I seem to be doing fine even-though, I completely failed in convincing the Dr. to use a different explanation to describe my medical event. Heart Attack, he insisted. You had a heart attack. Other than getting me to take it all seriously I can’t, for the life of me, figure out his resolve. I’m dumbfounded by his stern diagnosis.pexels-photo-41123

Anyway, if you think I’m slow to respond or acting out of sorts, just know I’m waiting for the raw carrots and broccoli to kick in. I expect to be back to myself in no time. Other than making errors, in everyday activities of daily living, I’m determined to return to active duty, fully myself.

Resisting the temptation to over-spiritualize my unwanted and uninvited interruption I can’t turn down the invitation to pay attention to matters of the heart. It does appear that our hearts are prone to unsuspecting combat. If we see ourselves engaged in meaningful work it’s easy to notice that poor diet and lack of extraneous exertion will have a derogatory presence.

Eating a steady diet of fast foods like rejection, unworthiness, and isolation will render us immobile and inactive. We can ignore the need to exercise goodwill, toward ourselves and others, leaving us where prevention is too late and a cure is required. Remember, if you have burned with anger, unforgiveness, and self-loathing it’s never to late to quit smoking. We can all give up fried hatred; self-directed or otherwise.

Energy and good health are necessary to a vibrant life. Giving up is not appealing unless you are headed in the wrong direction, thinking wrong thoughts, or allowing self-defeating attitudes to clog the ever-important circulatory system. Think”heart health!”

My book “If Only I Had A Dad: Finding Freedom From Fatherlessness” is good for what ails us; what ails our hearts. If you have lived with a broken heart, struggled to know who you are, desired more clarity, and would like to know how to treat the high cholesterol chaos running through our collective humanity, give this book a chance.

If my book doesn’t make you cry, laugh, and leave you hopeful email me! I know a good shrink I can refer you to. Just joking; sort of!

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