Saturday, September 7, 2013

Live Those Dreams

This is your life, so don’t compromise your dreams. Live those dreams.

There is no need to be dismayed or delayed by those who claim that your dreams are impossible. Decide for yourself what is possible, and then do everything in your power to make it happen.

Whatever you sincerely desire, you have the ability to bring to life. Your dreams are yours precisely because you’re the person who can make them real.

Be careful not to get caught up in doubts and excuses. Instead, get caught up in your authentic passion for living life the way you envision.

It is never easy to live with a strong sense of purpose. Yet the alternative, a life with no purpose, is even more undesirable.

Feel those dreams, touch those dreams, and live those dreams. They are far too important to ignore.

— Ralph Marston

Wearing The Be Love Sign

"I go to the library in Santa Monica to write quite often. The other day, I went there to get some work done, and I see this man standing and looking at some books. New nonfiction. He has a sign on his chest that says "Be Love." I ask him if I can take a picture, and he happily obliges. I turn around to get some money in my wallet. (He's homeless -- that much is evident.) I turn back around, and he's taken the sign off. "Picture's free," he says, "but you have to wear this for two hours." Read on to find out how this unexpected interaction transforms this writer's day and touches those around her.

Mindfulness in Politics

"Mindfulness meditation" is a growing movement, but can it unstick the modern political gridlock? Congressman Tim Ryan thinks so, and is calling for a "quiet revolution" in America. "Practicing mindfulness may not get everyone on the same page in detailed policy terms, he believes, but it could help to find more common ground between different views." This interview with Ryan shares more of his work on bringing mindfulness to the table -- including starting a 'quiet time caucus' on Capital Hill.

We Are Gardeners of the Wilderness

"We've entered what some scientists are calling the Anthropocene -- a new geologic epoch in which human activity, more than any other force, steers change on the planet. Just as we're now causing the vast majority of extinctions, the vast majority of endangered species will only survive if we keep actively rigging the world around them in their favor ... We are gardening the wilderness. The line between conservation and domestication has blurred." When journalist Jon Mooallem and his four year-old daughter, Isla, ventured outside of the world of plush animal toys and raptor-themed sports teams, they came across an endangered butterfly in the Antioch Dunes. This small, precious butterfly reflected much of our human fascination with the wild world -- and offered a powerful lesson in letting go.

How the Internet Helped Us Learn How To Share

In 1996, poet and essayist John Perry Barlow created "A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace." It was intended to serve as a bold announcement -- that a new era of human empowerment was near. "We will create a civilization of the Mind in Cyberspace," he offered. "May it be more humane and fair than the world your governments have made before." And though, there were a few first rocky steps -- it seems, humanity is now growing closer to realizing the capacity of 'sharing.' In this article, author Neal Gorenflo offers three most beautiful examples of how the Internet has helped us learn how to 'share.'

5 Reasons to be Kind

In a dominant paradigm weighted towards self-interest and self-orientation, we must make a special effort to question our mode of being. Can we afford to be narrowly self-focused? Can we grow to anywhere near our true potential if we look out only for ourselves? What role do kindness and compassion play in bridging a world that is growing increasingly fragmented? What follows are five powerful reasons to be kind, articulated by some of the greatest minds and hearts from around the globe.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Using Emergence to Scale Social Innovation

Do you want to change the world? If so, it may help to first understand how the world actually changes. This article co-authored by Margaret Wheatley describes how "emergence" - the linking together of local efforts and networks into global phenomena -- drives all substantial changes in nature and society. The networks we create, together with our mindfulness of other efforts regionally and globally, help to foster the emergent properties of our intentions and actions. Read on to learn more about encouraging emergence in your own life and work.

Necessities -- A Conversation with Richard Berger

Necessities -- A Conversation with Richard BergerI propose that one attribute of the production of those makers we call artists, historically and culturally, constitutes a kind of prosthetic activity to address an unforgettable and irreconcilable absence. To forget would be to surrender to incompleteness, an untenable and intolerable state. This production, the work of the artist, is intended to, however imperfectly, reestablish completeness.

We All Belong to the Earth: A Conversation with Camille Seaman

We All Belong to the Earth: A Conversation with Camille SeamanHe would stop at each tree and introduce me to the tree as if he were introducing me to a person. He would really have me look at the form of the tree and the way the branches were and the texture of the bark. He would have me hold it, and he would say, "Slow your breathing. Quiet your mind and listen. Listen to the tree." And literally you could hear it moving. You know? This huge, massive thing. You started to understand that this was a living thing.

Choose Goodness

It’s just as realistic to envision success as it is to worry about failure. The difference is in the choice you make.

It’s just as possible for you to make the effort as it is for you to make up an excuse. The choice is up to you.

You always have the power to make a difference. Choose to use that power in positive, purposeful and life-enriching ways.

Time is always flowing to you, and energy is always flowing from you. Continually make the choice to transform all that time and all that energy into useful, meaningful value.

Instead of wasting your resources on worry, resentment and anxiety, direct them toward goodness and achievement. This amazing, miraculous life is yours, so live each moment in the service of your highest values.

Every day, the choice is yours to make. Choose goodness, success and fulfillment.

— Ralph Marston

Sunday, September 1, 2013

The Most Overlooked Leadership Skill

"Even before I released the disc, I knew it was a long shot. And, unfortunately, it was a clumsy one too. We were playing Ultimate Frisbee and we were tied 14-14 with a time cap. The next point would win the game. I watched the disc fly over the heads of both teams. Everyone but me ran down the field. I cringed, helplessly, as the disc wobbled and listed left. Still, I had hope it could go our way. Sam was on my team..." Read on to find out how Sam's actions in this tight game of Ultimate Frisbee gifted the author a memorable lesson on leadership.