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Take ownership of what you do.
Turn your job in to a profession and you will turn your living into a lifestyle.

Do you go to work at your job or your profession?
A job provides for a living. A profession provides for a lifestyle.
A job places value on attendance. A profession places value on performance.
A job exchanges time for dollars. A profession provides service for compensation.

Regardless of the skill or talent, the type of work that you do, or the business dynamics of your employer, if you exchange time for dollars, then you have a job. If you exchange service for dollars, then you have a profession. Continue Reading

Dompamine

It’s a month since you committed to your New Year resolutions. This will be the year that you make things happen. Or, it’s the fifth day of the new weight loss program. Or, the first day of the, “I’ll be nice to people” project. How are you doing, so far?

That piece of chocolate is sitting in the dish, just waiting for you. It tastes so good. It’s your favorite flavor, shape, size and gooeyness. So why is there a struggle over a simple little piece of chocolate? It’s all going on in the brain. It is the conflict between dopamine and the “dope-in-me”. Continue Reading

Good Choices

Today is yesterday’s future and tomorrow’s history!

I heard a well known doctor tell his patient, “you are where you are today because of the choices you have made in the past.” The patient appeared taken back by the comment. She was hurt. She thought, “I came here for help and you are telling me what I already know. I made the wrong decision.”

When a person asks for directions, telling them that they made a wrong turn is not really useful. They already know they made the wrong turn. They are lost. They want directions to get them to their destination. Clearly, if they came by again asking for the same directions, you may want to focus on the wrong turn issue. If they come back the third time, you have to focus on their willingness to accept directions…to make the right decision. Continue Reading

Pick Your Battles

When people do stupid things, are they just naturally stupid, were they taught to be stupid, do they not know that they are stupid, or are they only stupid in our eyes? Regardless of their propensity for stupidity, it may only be our perception. They may feel that they are perfectly normal.

If they surrounded themselves with like people, then they may consider themselves normal. Now we have to consider that there might be a whole population of people out there who are stupid. Or…looking from their perspective, are we the stupid people? Continue Reading

How Things Changes: Christmas Eve 2015 from Grandpa L

Mom and I walked across the crowded parking lot and caught up to an elderly woman with a cane, slowly crossing the driveway. The man in the big pickup truck patiently waited as she crossed in front of him. While we were selecting a grocery cart, a man in a hurry, pushed ahead and pulled out a cart. No excuse me. No smile. No Merry Christmas. He must have been a very important person as he was mission focused.

We pulled our cart and moved toward the entrance. By then the elderly woman with the cane, caught up to us. I offered to get her cart but she refused. She was hoping to get a motorized cart that was recharging in the corner. Mom helped her get settled. She seemed comfortable with all the controls. She probably even knows how to game and text on her smart phone. Continue Reading

I asked my dad why he never learned to speak Polish. He said he knew a few words but that his mom and dad would not let the children speak anything but English. He said that in the 1920’s, speaking a foreign language meant that you were a foreigner and you would not be able to go to school, learn a trade, or get a good paying job.

People left their homeland seeking opportunity or safety. They were committed to survive in the new land. They would do what it takes to assimilate…to be part of the culture of their new home. They were not looking for hand-outs. They were looking for a hand-up. Continue Reading

I’m always skeptical when someone offers me something for free. Outwardly, I appreciate their generosity, but at this time in my life, I wonder, is it a friendly gesture or does it command reciprocity?

When I was in the Air Force, there was a custom at the officers club called the Dining In. It was a mandatory formal affair for all of the officers on the base. The cost of the dinner was divided among all the officers, regardless of your attendance. If you had to pay for it anyway, you might as well attend. Continue Reading

Sometimes we can learn a lot by just looking at the things around us. Sometimes we think we know what we need to know and why bother with just a little bit more information. But sometimes a little bit more information can make a big difference.

The difference between 211 degrees and 212 degrees is the difference between hot water and steam. Hot water can cook potatoes but steam can move a train, power a ship, and produce electricity for a whole city. Just a little difference, one degree, makes a big difference. Continue Reading

Comfort to Contentment ... A Journey

Life is a journey from the restless comforts of infancy to the subtle quiet contentment of old age. When grandpa was in his eighties, he had an apartment in a high-rise senior citizen community. His journey started in Europe and then by boat as an unaccompanied teen to America. He lied about his age in order to get a job in the coalmine. He and grandma raised five children while he worked in the steel mill.

As a teenager, we looked forward to visiting him. The visits were brief, but we were always thankful for the few minutes that he shared. A lot of our daily decisions centered around, “what would grandpa think?” He had his special souped-up bottle of whiskey that he used for the toast when we arrived. He didn’t like the taste of whiskey so he added sugar and sugar and sugar. It was almost syrup. Continue Reading

Which Road?

We were young newlyweds at Chanute AFB in central Illinois. On Sunday afternoons we would go for a ride just to see the countryside. Not knowing where to go, (GPS was a figment of someone’s imagination and a flip phone was a phone booth along the road that got hit by a car) we would come to an intersection and ask, “Left, right, or straight ahead?”

We had no clue as to what was ahead of us but we wanted to keep going. We would do this for hours. We got to see countryside that the traveler never would see. On one occasion, as the dirt road became very narrow, we were presented with a shallow stream running across the road. We stopped. We saw that the road went through the stream and there were tire tracks on the other side. Continue Reading