Getting Lost …

Forest 1“If you don’t know the trees you may be lost in the forest, but if you don’t know the stories you may be lost in life.”

Siberian Elder

If you “know the trees“, you are aware of your surroundings and can tell where you are.  Trees can tell us much about the environment we face, the conditions we can expect, and even which way is north … if you know where to look.

To “know the stories” is a different matter altogether …

Our stories tell us things about ourselves and describe the human condition is ways both entertaining and educational.


When we tell the story about the hare and the tortoise, we are not talking about animals.   We are promoting the slow, but steady approach as the more beneficial way to move through life. Continue reading

Life Science 101 …

“Life isn’t a science.  We make it up as we go along.”

Al Hirschfeld

So how are YOUR creative story-telling skills?

I believe that this quote rings true with many of us in these times of uncertainty and radical change.   The thinking instilled in our younger selves about the way life would work just does not fit that well nowadays.  Those clear and always ascending life paths of relationship, marriage, career, family, accomplishments, community, and retirement  seem sometimes rather quaint.

Our lives as we thought they would be appear as images viewed through a dim and murky lens.   Our lives as we are living them seem unpredictable and fraught with more challenge than we expected to face.   Get real … our parents faced uncertainty, doubt, and difficulties.  We just did not notice, in many cases.  

Here’s a comforting thought if you are thinking that I’m all “doom and gloom” this bright fall weekend morning:   We do have some options here.

Not having a reliable map into tomorrow gives us three options:  

1)  “When in trouble, when in doubt, run and holler, scream and shout”  

An energizing, if not productive option when I first heard it as a raw recruit a few years ago and just as possible to do now.  

Just like political parties do, we can catastrophize about what is about to happen, might happen, or that we can even imagine as possibly happening … someday, somewhere, maybe.

If nothing else, this creates nervous energy, but we seldom make positive use of all the jitters.  

2)  “Mill about, Mill”    

In other words, just wait for it.

You have to imagine this said in my best drill sergeant tone, barked in that flat and perfectly clear military communication known as command voice.  

Just flutter around in place and tomorrow will find you, sooner or later.   Forget about plans and action.   Just wait for that proverbial other shoe to whack you in the head.

A comforting stance … until the shoe comes hurtling out of the sky without warning.

3)  “… aaaandddddddd Action!”  

Write your own story.  

You are the scriptwriter, the director, and the star of your own show … own it.

This is the hard, positive, and effective option.   Life has always been unpredictable and challenging.  

Accept this and roll on …   whatever happens, you will feel better about yourself.

Deciding whether I am the action star, romantic lead, or comic relief in my own little epic in the Heartland ….


Reflect, Learn, Share, Repeat …

I was recently challenged to tell people what I do in five to seven words … sigh.

How do you distill all the things you do into a few words?   My particular curse is to be what generously might be called a “Renaissance Man“, with many interests and a wide range of experiences and background. 

A less generous description might be “He’s got ADHD out the wazoo”, but I prefer the more stately first version. 

Some folks have it easy – “I drive” was another response which I particularly liked.  Short, to the point, and completely descriptive. 

Others shared their value statement or a brief elevator speech.  

“I help people get better at doing things”.  Well, good for you, but how do you do that thing you do?

My response was the title of this post:

Reflect, Learn, Share, Repeat …

Not sure that I have done a better job than anyone else, so I’ll leave it to you. 

What does my short phrase evoke in your mind?

Better yet, how would YOU answer this question?

Waiting patiently for both your responses and spring in the Heartland ….


I Am Thankful For Butterflies and Circuses …

This week, I am thankful for those with the imagination and the gifts to create incredible images, powerful words, and essential messages, then put them into stories that upset us, impact us, and finally motivate us.

Through such experiences, we recognize our own power and worth, while being moved to act on behalf of others.

Example One:  The Butterfly Circus – Inspiration Video Series.

I simply think this is one of the most impacting videos I’ve seen.  It’s been around a while and you’ve probably seen it before, but this one is always worth another look.  Trade 20 minutes of playing Farmville or watching Jersey Shores🙂 

Kudos to Joshua and Rebekah Weigel of the Paradigm Exchange,  who created this little gem and to the entire cast, but especially to Nick Vujicic who played Will.

If a man without arms or legs can do so much, what the heck is stopping me?

Feeling like accomplishing something in the Heartland ….


Love Stories ….


Sometimes you just need something that will make you feel better about life.  These little vignettes of people expressing and sharing love will do that … I guarantee.

With great appreciation to MarkandAngelHackLife, one of my soulful sources.

Barely holding back tears in the Heartland ….