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Lost for a while...

How do you feel when things take longer than you expected? Complications, surprises, mistakes, barriers -- all kinds of things can make an easy path into a complicated trail. We're lost, but if we're paying attention, we're learning. Sometimes you need to spend a long time lost to find a better way to get there. -- doug smith  
Recent posts


Do you agree, or disagree? Independence is a dance best not interrupted. I can be convinced either way. Just please don't interrupt. -- doug smith  

Steer the Wheel

  I've known people who are so creative that they not only let their imagination run wild, it gets them into trouble because they let it drive everything. If you run away to join the circus, you could end up being a clown. If that's your goal, then great. Just know the possibilities of an unregulated mind. You can allow your imagination to run wild without putting it in charge. Yes, we need creativity. Go for it often and with enthusiasm. And, we also need clarity: what are we trying to achieve. We also need courage: will you stay the course when you're challenged? And, we also need compassion: can you pursue your goals while caring about other people? Go ahead and think outside of the box -- just don't fall into a hole you can't crawl out of. -- doug smith

Where to start...

  How do you get where you want to go? How do you achieve your goals? Where do you find the road to success? I don't have all the answers. I don't know all of the twists and turns. But, here's a great way to start: Master y our mind, master your mood, and success will follow, Easier said than done? Of course! -- doug smith

What to Keep?

  It's an effort in refinement. As we move ahead, creating new forms of success, we face the challenge of what to keep and what to discard. What matters to some of us does not matter to all of us most of the time. If we're not careful, we end up discarding something that turns out to have been valuable, like for instance ethical standards and rules that prevent chaos from destroying everything in its path. Part of learning is differentiating the obsolete from the classic. One might look like the other, but they are not the same. Before you break a rule, maybe find out what it is holding together. -- doug smith

Right and...

You've been working hard. You've been learning, growing, and evolving. Now is not the time to stop. Even as we master our work (which is never fully mastered, is it?) we find new opportunities. You're doing it right AND you can do it better. Discover how to do it better. It will be fun. -- doug smith

A Better Assumption

Some people assume that you get what you deserve. Others insist that in an unfair world, there's no way to balance things in your favor once they become stacked against you. True or not, those types of assumptions are not helpful.  Here's a better assumption (true or not...): You have earned whatever you have. Whether or not you get what you want next depends on how hard you are willing to work for it. It's better because it gives you control. Isn't that what you want? -- doug smith   

Critical Gifts

  Sometimes the toughest critics are those who could never do what they are being critical about. Who knows why that is -- maybe they're bitter from previous attempts like a film critic who failed at making films or a theatre critic who could never act. Or, maybe they're just unhappy. Criticism may be necessary. We do need to know what mistakes to avoid. We do need to improve. But criticism can also (usually) be kind. I'm working on easing up on my supply of criticism. Before unloading on someone, it's always worth checking to see what the motivation is. To improve them, to make yourself feel better, or something else? Be kind with other people's talents, gifts, and abilities. Maybe they are doing the best they know how to do. Maybe they're even doing more than you could in the same circumstances. If it's not your gift, don't unwrap it. Maybe work on your own gifts first. -- doug smith


  What's the life span of wisdom? We learn all sorts of things that expire, that become untrue or useless. For example, all those hours I spent learning Wordperfect. Gone. All the knots I learned as a fire fighter, mostly forgotten. The lines that I memorized from productions years ago -- gone. But learning need not be frustrating. While we can't remember everything (or even most things!) the lessons that lead to wisdom will benefit us forever. The wisdom we acquire that allows us to treat other people with dignity and respect. The wisdom that makes us cautious enough to avoid mistakes we've made before. Wisdom does not expire. What have you learned today? -- doug smith  

Find the Joy

  What's the hardest job you've ever had? Factory work? Kitchen work? Military service? Law enforcement? Fire fighting?  Some jobs are tough physically, some are tough mentally, and some will tax you both ways. I have seen people be completely miserable in their jobs while other people were perfectly focused and prospering in the very same jobs. Those who were happy knew that no job needs to be forever and that all work has dignity in it. Everything we do can lead to something better to do when we always do our best.  I've had tough jobs and yet no matter how tough, there was always some joy to be found in the work. Fellow team members, friendly customers, understanding managers, meaningful work -- there is always something if you find it. You may need to look for the joy in the job, but once you do you can find it. When you find the joy in the job the work gets easier.  When you must work either way, why not make the work better? -- doug smith

How to compliment someone...

Do you want to really compliment someone and make them feel truly valued, really respected? Giving someone your complete attention is the best, most sincere compliment.  You'll feel great, and they will remember it a long time. -- doug smith  


  One brilliant, fabulous, wonderful moment: now. -- doug smith