Thursday, January 22

I stand alone today…

“I've found a reason for me
To change who I used to be
A reason to start over new
And the reason is you”
Hoobastank – The Reason

So, I’m driving into work this morning and I hear this song. It’s really a beautiful song. But there’s something wrong with it. It’s advocating that you can change who you are because of SOMEONE ELSE.

Hey…that’s a beautiful thought and one that MANY love songs like to put forth. However, IT’S COMPLETELY WRONG!

There is only ONE person that you can change for…and that person is YOURSELF.

Let’s be honest, it’s hard enough to change. The only way that you’ll ever succeed in changing yourself, in any way, is because you wanted it enough to keep on working, even when it’s so hard that you don’t think you can do it anymore. And really…there’s no one that will make you feel that way or work that hard.

For every change you try to make, there WILL BE opposition. Often, it’s opposition from the person that wants you to change the most! YOU might even be the source of your own opposition.

That’s why changing is so hard. It’s a constant struggle and fight to take that next step forward. If you’ve got your goals straight and your reasons right, then you will be able to find it within yourself to keep pushing on. To pick up your foot and take that next step forward, closer to your goals.

“I stand alone today WHY YOU FEEL Don't ask me why I feel
I just know I feel this way WHAT YOU SAY I stand alone today”
Jackyl – I Stand Alone

This is an important point that MOST people don’t ever get. It’s called SELF-HELP for a reason!!! :-) There is no one in this world that can change you, make you change, or keep you from changing. Sure, there are people that can cause you problems and heartache and pain, but they can’t stop you or force you if you don’t let them.

When you’re working on changing you…you are on your own.

And you know what? That’s OK. You really do have everything already inside you that you will need to make those changes. Once you make that decision, really make it, and hold on regardless of what is thrown at you, you will find that the tools to make those changes are waiting inside already. Sure, you may ask someone to help you to find those tools, or teach you how to use them (It is rather hard to hammer a screw into a board after all) and that’s OK too. Part of the toolset that we all have is the ability to reach out and ask for help when we need a boost. Don’t think of it as if you’re borrowing a chainsaw…you’re just having someone show you how to not cut your leg off with the one you’ve got. :-)

Once you realize that you’re the one you have to change for and that you CAN do it with everything that’s already inside you…you will find the path to making true and lasting changes in your life. And as you start walking down that path, you’ll find that there will be others that will come and ask you for help finding or walking their own paths.

And helping someone like that is one of the greatest blessings you’ll ever have in your life.

Hey…you’re still reading? See…you’re one of my greatest blessings today. ;-)

Wednesday, January 21

Life goes on…

We all know that life is filled with tragic moments. We see genocide, kidnappings, corruption, and every other sort of evil that only mankind could come up with. Our world is a violent, scary, awful place. And you all know it.

Now, don’t get me wrong. There are a lot of good things about our world, just like there a lot of good things about most people too. But let’s be honest here for a bit…our world’s a pretty screwed up place.

I think just about everyone that I know has had some major traumatic event occur in their lives. From the death of a loved one, to disease, to any number of life changing events. Sometimes it all just seems so very random and pointless.

Hell, we’ve even got mottos and slogans about how things work…things like “Shit happens” or “Life’s a bitch and then you die”.

But you want to know something? It’s something that everyone who’s ever faced a tragedy MUST learn.

Life goes on.

Life doesn’t ever stop, just because your feelings are hurt or you’re laid up in a hospital bed. The sun will set and tomorrow will be a new day. You’ll still have to back to work. You still have to eat and sleep and everything else that your body requires in order to function.

Now, understand something. I’m not lessening anyone’s pain or sorrow or heartache in the moment. Without living another’s life, there’s absolutely no way that I or anyone else can judge or even approximate your pain. But I’m telling you a very simple fact that most everyone misses. Life goes on.

In some ways, I think that this is a very powerful healing concept. See, most people tend to get stuck in their pain and sorrow. It’s normal and human to do that. But it’s also normal and human to get back up and move forward. And that’s where a lot of people miss the boat.

They’d rather stay stuck and miserable, reliving the moment of their pain and loss. This will lead you nowhere. In fact, it will drag you down and keep you down and actually prevent you from doing ANYTHING if you stay there long enough.

Life goes on.

It’s a beautiful thought and fact. It’s actually more than a healing concept. It’s the promise of every sunset and the blessing of every sunrise. Today is a new day. A chance for us to do things different. Another day to grow and become that person that locked away inside our hearts.

So it is with all my heart and with my greatest wished for the best blessing in your life, no matter where you are, or what has happened, that I tell you…LIFE GOES ON. And so should you.

Watch tonight’s sunset and know that tomorrow’s sunrise holds the greatest promise you can ever have. Another day.

Tuesday, January 20

For the People, By the People…

Every now and then, if you’re looking around, you can find something that in its entirety and eloquence opens doors to the heart, mind, and spirit. Today is a very important day. It’s the first day that a black man has stood as caretaker and guardian of the American people. All of us. So today, I think that it’s fitting to share with you all this speech, from Charlie Chaplin. I’m not going to say anything about it, I’ll let it speak for itself. Open your heart and listen to this message, it’s as true today as it was in 1941. There’s also a link to watch the clip after.


"I'm sorry, but I don't want to be an emperor. That's not my business. I don't want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone if possible - Jew, Gentile - black man - white.

We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that. We want to live by each other's happiness - not by each other's misery. We don't want to hate and despise one another. In this world there's room for everyone and the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone.

The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way. Greed has poisoned men's souls - has barricaded the world with hate - has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical; our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost.

The aeroplane and the radio have brought us closer together. The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in man - cries for universal brotherhood - for the unity of us all. Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world - millions of despairing men, women, and little children - victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people. To those who can hear me, I say: 'Do not despair.' The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed - the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people. And so long as men die, liberty will never perish.

Soldiers! Don't give yourselves to brutes - men who despise you and enslave you - who regiment your lives - tell you what to do - what to think and what to feel! Who drill you - diet you - treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder. Don't give yourselves to these unnatural men - machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines! You are not cattle! You are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts. You don't hate, only the unloved hate - the unloved and the unnatural!

Soldiers! Don't fight for slavery! Fight for liberty! In the seventeenth chapter of St Luke, it is written the kingdom of God is within man not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people, have the power - the power to create machines. The power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful - to make this life a wonderful adventure. Then in the name of democracy - let us use that power - let us all unite. Let us fight for a new world - a decent world that will give men a chance to work - that will give youth a future and old age a security.

By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power. But they lie! They do not fulfill that promise. They never will! Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people. Now let us fight to fulfill that promise! Let us fight to free the world - to do away with national barriers - to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason - a world where science and progress will lead to all men's happiness. Soldiers, in the name of democracy, let us unite!

Hannah, can you hear me? Wherever you are, look up Hannah. The clouds are lifting! The sun is breaking through! We are coming out of the darkness into the light. We are coming into a new world - a kindlier world, where men will rise above their hate, their greed and their brutality. Look up, Hannah! The soul of man has been given wings and at last he is beginning to fly. He is flying into the rainbow - into the light of hope, into the future, the glorious future that belongs to you, to me, and to all of us. Look up, Hannah... look up!"

Charlie Chaplin – “The Great Dictator”

The Great Dictator Speech