Monday, October 29, 2012

The Power of Negative Thinking

My Public Mutual GAM sent me this article. I think it's uplifting and worth a read for everyone. I've always remembered this quote by the Holocaust survivor, Victor Frankl

For the meaning of life differs from man to man,
from day to day and from hour to hour.
What matters, therefore, is not the meaning of life in general
but rather the specific meaning of a person's life at a given moment.

Viktor E. Frankl

The Power of Negative Thinking

by Drs Les & Leslie Parrott

Most negative people feel they could be positive if they had a different job, lived in a better place, or were in a great relationship.
But happiness does not hinge on better circumstances.
A person with bad attitudes will still be a person with bad attitudes, wherever and with whomever he or she lives.

By force of habit, each of us is either basically positive or basically negative.
Our circumstances change with the weather, but our attitudes are the same.
The negative person defends his attitudes with the rationale of being realistic, while the positive person looks beyond the current state of affairs and sees people and situations in terms of possibilities.

Negative interpretations are guaranteed to sap the happiness out of a relationship.
But how do we cultivate positive attitudes when our spouses do something we dislike?

The answer lies in taking responsibility for our own feelings.

I remember coming home one day flushed with excitement and eager to discuss some good news with Les. I can't
remember the news now, but I remember his response: lukewarm enthusiasm. I wanted him to share my
excitement, but for whatever reason, he didn't. "You upset me," I later told him. But the truth is, he didn't upset me. I
upset myself. That sounds a little strange, but it's true. Before exploring why Les didn't join in my celebration, I
jumped to a negative conclusion: He doesn't even care that something good happened to me. He is only interested
in himself.

Since that time, both of us have tried to adopt a "no fault, no blame" attitude. The idea is to suspend our negative
evaluations about each other and remember that no one can make another person unhappy. Everyone is
responsible for his or her own attitude.

Victor Frankl, more than anyone else, exemplified the human ability to rise above circumstances and maintain a
positive attitude. He was a twenty-six year old Jewish psychiatrist in Vienna, Austria, when he was arrested by
Hitler's Gestapo and placed in a concentration camp. Month in and month
out, he worked under the great smokestacks that belched out black carbon monoxide from the incinerators where
his father, mother, sister, and wife had been cremated.

When Victor Frankl was finally called for inquisition, he stood naked in the center of a powerful white light while men in shiny boots strode to and fro assailing him with questions and accusations.
Already they had taken his wife, his family, his writing, his clothes, his wedding ring, and everything else of material value.
But in the midst of this barrage of questions, an idea flashed across Frankl's mind:
They have taken from me everything I have - except
the power to choose my own attitude.

Thankfully, most people are not required to cope with such devastating circumstances as the Jews faced in Nazi Germany.
But the same principle that helped Victor Frankl survive the death camps - choosing his own attitude -
applies to every difficult circumstance, wherever and whenever it occurs.

Millions of couples are robbed of happiness because one of the partners has developed a negative mindset,
blaming their unhappiness on things their spouse does or doesn't do.
It's one of the worst mistakes a person can make in a relationship.
We often hear statement in marriage counseling like,
"Her comments hurt me!' or "He makes me so angry."
In reality, remarks and comments do not hurt or upset people; people can only upset themselves.
Of course, being upset is a natural reaction to something we dislike, but
that reaction can serve as a trigger for a more constructive, positive response.

When we recognize where the control resides - in ourselves and not in external events - we are able to reinterpret upsetting events and develop a positive attitude.

Monday, October 22, 2012

The echo of Life

A son and his father were walking on the mountains.

Suddenly, the son falls hurts himself and screams: "AAAhhhhhhhhhhh!!!"

To his surprise, he hears the voice repeating, somewhere in the mountain: "AAAhhhhhhhhhhh!!!"

Curious, he yells: "Who are you?"

He receives the answer:"Who are you?"

Angered at the response, he screams: "Coward!"

He receives the answer: "Coward!"

He looks to his father and asks: "What's going on?"

The father smiles and says: "My son, pay attention."

And then he screams to the mountain: "I admire you!"

The voice answers: "I admire you!"

Again the man screams: "You are a champion!"

The voice answers: "You are a champion!"

The boy is surprised, but does not understand.

Then the father explains: "People call this Echo, but really this is Life.

It gives you back everything you say or do.

Our life is simply a reflection of our actions.

If you want more love in the world, create more love in your heart.

If you want more competence in your team, improve your competence.

This relationship applies to everything, in all aspects of life, 

Life will give you back everything you have given to it.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

When you start, success begins

You don't need to know all of your answers in advance to solve a problem or to reach your goal. 

But you must have a clear idea of the problem or the goal you want to reach in advance.

Everyone who achieved success in a great venture, solved their problems as they came to them.

They helped themselves. 

And they were helped through powers known and unknown to them at the time they set out on their voyage. 

They kept going regardless of the obstacles they met.

Don't procrastinate when faced with a difficult problem. 

Break your problem into parts, and handle one part at a time. 

All you have to do is know where you're going. 

The answers will come to you of their own accord.

It's the job you never start that takes longest to finish.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

A creed to live by

Don't determine your worth by comparing yourself with others.
It is because we are different that each of us is special.

Don't set your goals by what others deem important.
Only you know what is best for you.

Don't take for granted the things closest to your heart;
cling to them as you would your life, for without them life
is meaningless.

Don't let your life slip through your fingers
by living in the past or for the future.

By living your life ONE DAY AT A TIME
you will live all the days of your life.
Don't give up when you still have something to give.

Nothing is really over.........until the moment you stop trying

Don't be afraid to admit that you are less than perfect;
it is this fragile thread that binds us to each other.

Don't be afraid to encounter risks,
It's by taking chances we learn how to be brave.

Don't shut LOVE out of your life
by saying it's impossible to find.

The quickest way to receive LOVE is to give LOVE,
the fastest way to lose LOVE is to hold it too tightly
and the best way to keep LOVE is to give it wings.

Don't dismiss your dreams.
To be without dreams is to be without HOPE;
To be without HOPE is to be without purpose.

Don't run through life so fast that you forget not only

Life isn't a race, but......

Friday, October 12, 2012

What made you give me the stone?

A wise man who was travelling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream.

The next day he met another traveller who was hungry, and the wise man opened his bag to share his food. 

The hungry traveller saw the precious stone and asked the man to give it to him. 
He did so without hesitation. 
The traveller left, rejoicing in his good fortune. 
He knew the stone was worth enough to give him security for a lifetime.

But a few days later he came back to return the stone to the wise man.

“I’ve been thinking,” he said, “I know how valuable the stone is, but I give it back to you in the hope that you can give me something even more precious. 

Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give the stone to me.”

Thursday, October 11, 2012

When success is ready, are you?

Penn Commencement Address by Dr. Eric E. Schmidt, chairman of the Board, CEO, Google, Inc., Monday, May 18, 2009.
The Courage to be Unreasonable
Eric Schmidt
Thank you for that. Let me begin by congratulating all the graduates. It’s exciting to be graduating and I especially want to congratulate the parents.  And remember that they still need you and maybe they’ll now listen to you. And if you aren’t sure who I’m talking to, I’m actually talking to both the parents and the students, so congratulations to everybody. 
We owe a debt in my industry—to Penn—that is profound. It was in 1946 that the ENIAC was invented, right here in a basement down the street. And literally everything that you see, every computer, every mobile phone, every device, descends from the principles that were invented right here.  This really is the center of my world.
And now 63 years later, 250 of your alumni work at Google. This is the most desirable place for us to hire interns anywhere in the world and I can tell you that we know the quality of the graduates that I see before me are the best in the world. It is exciting to be part of this.
Now, when I think about Penn, I think about the metaphor of resilience, of a culture that works, of a hunger to change. If you think about 20 years ago, when Penn was struggling and the changes that the people around me made to turn it into the most desirable undergraduate major from a standpoint of high school applications in the country, from the kind of culture that has been built here, you see that the culture works, and that the combination that you see represented on the stage, that the parents are so proud to have sent their students to really has delivered, the very best that we can do here in America. 
And of course, we also have the best cheesesteaks in the world, which is not so bad.
When I look at this group, I see the Google and Facebook generation.  And when I was first in this stadium, my track buddies and I got in a sta tion wagon—you remember them—and I drove up here to go to a track and field event with the great Marty Liquori. And I think this is almost 40 years ago. We had Tang, you have Red Bull.
Now, we programmed computers in a language called BASIC. You, of course, use Java.
We had VCRs that had an hour of video and cost $700. You use YouTube and you upload 15 hours of YouTube video every minute.
And we got our news from newspapers. Remember them? You get news from blogs and tweets. And for those of you who don’t know what a tweet is, it’s not what you hear in a zoo.
We stood in line to buy Pong, you stood in line to buy the Wii.
We didn’t tell people about our most embarrassing moments in college, you record them and post them on YouTube and Facebook every day. And I am looking forward to watching these for the next 30 or 40 years. 
We used mainframe computers with 300 megabytes of storage to go to the moon 6 times. You use an iPod with 120 gigabytes, that’s about 500 times more, to get to your next class. Which is not that close, because it’s an urban campus. 
We thought that “friending” was a noun. You think of it as a verb.
We had phone booths, remember them? You have cell phones.
We wore watches; we took pictures with cameras. We navigated with maps; we listened to transistor radios. Again, you have a cell phone.
We thought that the marvels of computers and technology would help us improve the world. You agree, and we’re both right. So despite all these marvels, this a great time to be graduating.
Now, you went to college to develop the kind of analytical thinking skills to deal with enormous amounts of complex information that you’ll face for the rest of your life. But I would argue you have in many ways the best opportunity before you because you’re graduating into a tough time.
I used my favorite search engine of course to find out “What did the Great Depression spur?” Well, it spurred Rice Krispies, Twinkies and the beer can. You would have never gotten through college without these things, right? 
So it seems to me that with all the technology and connected-ness that we see, you have an opportunity that’s even better, even stronger than anything that I ever faced when I was sitting in the same seats. You are seeing a situation where due to the enormous goodwill of people—here on the stage and others—we have an opportunity to have everyone in the world have access to all the world’s information.
This has never been possible. And why is this so important? Why is ubiquitous information so profound? It’s a tremendous equalizer. Information is power, people have fought over it, people care a lot about it, it serves as a check and balance on politicians. If you were a dictator, which of course you’re not going to be, because you’re a fine graduate from Penn, first thing you would do is shut off all the communication so that people couldn’t actually talk each other and figure out how to make the world a better place.
Information is very, very important. And, in fact, the way you should invade these oppressive regimes is through information. Then the citizens will take that information and turn their societies into better societies. This is going to continue and to continue and to continue.
And what are we going to do with this vastly more popular web? Well we’re building a contemporaneous and historical record that is unparalleled in human history. There are all sorts of interesting possibilities.
You’ll have megabits of bandwidth to essentially every human pair of hands in the world. For knowledge, for entertainment, for all of the things that people care about. You could have a face-to-face meeting across the world. And with automatic translation, you can talk to them even though they don’t speak your language.
When you’re traveling in Mongolia, those of you who are graduating and want to take a week off, go to Mongolia and you fall off your motorcycle, you can get medical care from a doctor that doesn’t speak your language because your medical records can be right there. This is life changing, life saving, life fundamental.
Imagine a situation, happening very soon, where all of the world’s information will be translated into all the other languages, so we can find out what everybody really thinks. And we can develop a new insight into what they care about and they can with us. In the next ten years, it will be possible to have the equivalent of iPods in your purse or on your belt with 85 years of video. Which means that if it’s given to you at birth, you’re going to be frustrated the whole time, you’ll never be done watching all the videos. That’s how profound this technological revolution is.
You could ask Google the most important questions, like, where are my car keys after all? Because all of a sudden we’ll know where everything is and we can make that available.
Computers are good at some things, and they are particularly good at these sorts of things.
We can detect flu outbreaks, because we can watch what people are doing quicker. We can do things; here’s another example. What I really want is while I’m typing a paper I want the computer to tell me what I should have been writing instead. Wouldn’t that have been useful?
Another product that we’ve suggested but its not been built yet is the paper lengthening project. It adds ten percent to every paper and its recursive. It would have been very useful. The point is that computers really can help you, even though you don’t need this anymore now that you are out of college.
So if you think of mobile phones as a metaphor, as an extension of you, with image recognition, avatars and all the technologies that are coming.  You can see that the ability for us to make our lives even more powerful is all right before us.
So what should you do, right now then? Well you should start by listening to George Bernard Shaw who said that, “all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”
Graduation gives you the courage to be unreasonable. Don’t bother to have a plan. Instead let’s have some luck. Success is really about being ready for the good opportunities that come before you. It’s not to have a detailed plan about everything you’re going to do, you can’t plan innovation or inspiration, but you can be ready for it. And when you see it, you can jump on it and you can make a difference, as many of the people here today have already done.
The important point here is, if you forego your plan you also then have to forego fear. In many ways in the last four years and maybe in high school as well, you’ve been penalized for making mistakes. From now on, the rewards will gravitate to those who make mistakes and learn from them, as the president said.
So stop right now. Take a minute and think of something completely new and go work on that. Take that as your challenge; take that as your opportunity. Whatever you care the most about.
So how should you do it, how should you behave? Well, do it in a group, its much more fun anyway. None of us is as smart as all of us. Universities now are good at teaching you how to work with other people, its no longer the lone light sitting in the lab, it’s a team.
And you can see Twitter as an example of a form of social intelligence; use it. Find a network of people that care about you and so forth and so on.  You can imagine watching Watson and Crick, who discovered the structure of DNA, did it at a university.
You can imagine today, there are two people who probably met on Facebook at a university. And then are going to say to each other, “what are you up to right now?” “Oh, I’m finding the secret of life, then I’m off to a pub. LOL.” It’s okay. Do it together.
But amidst all of this, some truths emerge. Leadership and personality matter a lot. Intelligence, education, and analytical reasoning matter. Trust matters. In the network world, trust is the most important currency. 
Which brings me to my final question. What is, in fact, the meaning of life? And in a world where everything is remembered and everything is kept forever—the world you are in—you need to live for the future and the things that you really, really care about.
And what are those things? Well in order to know that, I hate to say it, but you’re going to have to turn off your computer. You’re actually going to have to turn off your phone and discover all that is human around us.
You’ll find that people really are the same all around the world. They really do care about the same things.
You’ll find that curiosity and enthusiasm and passion are contagious. I see it with the students, I see it with the faculty, I see it with the trustees and the president here—it’s contagious. Make it happen, take it with you.
You’ll find that nothing beats holding the hand of your grandchild as he walks his first steps. You’ll find that a mind set in its ways is a life wasted—don’t do it.
You’ll find that the resilience of a human being and the human spirit is amazing. You’ll find today that the best chance you will ever have is right now, to start being unreasonable. But when you do, listen to me, be nice to your parents and true to your school. 
Good luck, and thank you very much. Thank you

There's always another side

A father was reading a magazine and his little daughter every now and then distracted him. 

To keep her busy, he tore one page on which was printed the map of the world.

He tore it into pieces and asked her to go to her room and put them together to make the map again.

He was sure she would take the whole day to get it done. 

But the little one came back within minutes with perfect map. 

When he asked how she could do it so quickly, she said, 'Oh Dad, there is a man's face on the other side of the paper. 
I made the face perfect to get the map right." "

She ran outside to play leaving the father surprised...”


There is always the other side to whatever we experience in this world. 

Whenever we come across a challenge or a puzzling situation, look at the other side... 

You will be surprised to see an easy way to tackle the problem