Thursday, July 26, 2012

Passion Party #459 - Being A Warrior

Today I choose to be a warrior
I choose to make things happen
rather than let them happen to me.

I choose to act from a place of
impeccable integrity
as I find joy in this day.

I will energize my actions
with strength from my body as well as my mind and heart.

I will be courageous in my actions
and in my observations,
and will allow myself to sit and let the thoughts come, unfiltered.

I will care,
but I won't care too much.
I will be serious
in my desire to lighten up,
knowing that nothing lasts forever
and this, too, shall pass.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Passion Party #458 - Independence Day

If the 4th of July is all about freedom and independence
I cannot think of a place I would rather spend it
than in the middle of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
No parades, no fireworks besides the nightly campfire,
no guns of any kind allowed (we're in a National Park).
An area settled by rugged families
willing to sacrifice comfort for the ability
to sit in Nature's lap
surrounded by Alpine meadows and wild flowers

Free from television and advertising
Free from telephone and internet
Free from newspapers
Free from shopping

Independence from all we are force fed every day
and free to walk as far as you can
as far as your body will carry you.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Passion Party #457- Nature Wins

I still have trouble wrapping my head around the fact that I am 60 years old.
50 always seemed old when I was growing up,
but 60 -
60 WAS old.
I remember when my mom had her 65th birthday,
about 25 year ago.  My son was 4, now he's 29.
Well, you can do the math, I don't need to continue.

The trees don't care
they just experience the seasons
sometimes a wet winter, sometimes dry
sometimes a forest fire, sometimes an earthquake.
This area had it's first road built in 1887
the houses still standing date back to 1901 and 1907
So young!
Mankind is such a short blip in time in this area.
The trees and flowers have survived miners, loggers, developers,
mainly due to inhospitable winters,
avalanches that wiped out most all attempts to build in this area.
In Mineral King, Nature wins, Nature rules.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Passion Party #456 - Morning

The sun comes up differently in the mountains
or maybe it is that my eyes are clear
senses more acute
the birds singing
water rushing down the mountain
the smell of pine and firewood.

I have come to Silver City so many times over the years -
as a hiker, as a lover, as a father,
all through the childhood of my two sons
and now with friends,
kids gone off to their own lives

But the sunrise, the trees, the road, the general store,
 they are all the same.
The only thing that is different
is that here it seems that nothing changes.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Bonus: How to Defeat Fear

HOW TO DEFEAT FEAR by Pema Chodron

Once there was a young warrior. Her teacher told her that she had to do battle with fear. She didn’t want to do that. It seemed too aggressive; it was scary; it seemed unfriendly. But the teacher said she had to do it and gave instructions for the battle.

The day arrived. The student warrior stood on one side, and fear stood on the other. The warrior was feeling very small, and fear was looking big and wrathful. The young warrior roused herself and went toward fear, prostrated three times, and asked, “May I have permission to go into battle with you?”

Fear said, “Thank you for showing me so much respect that you ask permission.”

Then the young warrior said, “How can I defeat you?”

Fear replied, “My weapons are that I talk fast, and I get very close to your face. Then you get completely unnerved, and you do whatever I say. If you don’t do what I tell you, I have no power. You can listen to me, and you can have respect for me. You can even be convinced by me. But if you don’t do what I say, I have no power.”

In that way, the student warrior learned how to defeat fear.

Passion Party #455 - Advertising Run Amok

Back in the 1960s it was a simpler time.
You might be exposed to 60 advertising messages a day.
Now estimates run from 1600 - 3000 advertising messages a day.
With flashing electronic billboards,
"public service" ads hanging form lampposts,
cars turned into traveling ads, and the onslaught of online advertising
 it has become a never-ending barrage.

I recently read an article by an internet marketer who pointed out “When you get something for free, you become the product”.  This makes sense – if the website is not charging you a fee to view it or use it, you are becoming the product they will want to sell to others to maintain their bottom line.  Some, like Google, use it well, others like Myspace use it poorly and lose their viewers and lose their business.

So what is the answer?
Mine was 5 days in the mountains
no newspaper, no TV, no internet, no billboards
my mind cleared
with the help of hundreds of trees
a view of 100 miles that was not trying to sell me anything.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Passion Party 454 - Social Media Vs. Social Proof

My business is built on Social Proof:
I do good work for a person,
and she tells two more people that
I am a good person to work with.
 - knowledgeable
 - trustworthy
 - honest
She doesn't "like" me on Facebook,
she refers business to me from personal relationships.

You can't buy social proof;
you can't twitter yourself to expertise.
As Wall Street and investors rush to monetize social media
the danger is that websites will become as annoying as the
electronic billboards that now dot the Los Angeles landscape.

With Social Proof, "friend" is not a verb.
Friendship is spread by those that you have helped.
Once again, the old becomes new.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Passion Party #453 - A Father's Job

A father's job is to teach his children how to be warriors;
to give them the confidence to get on the horse and ride into battle when it is necessary to do so.

 After my dad returned from World War 2, he rode into battle every day in the sheet metal industry in Queens, NY.
He taught me indirectly.
He taught me by creating his own company
He taught me by going to work every day and by kissing my mom every night when he came home from work.
He taught me with his strength, and his anger, and his compassion.

What I have learned is that all I had to add was unconditional love and a willingness to let go of my desire and support whatever battle my warrior children choose to fight.