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Note: Cross posted from STATIC Youth’s Weblog.

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Abraham and Isaac (detail), 1645, by Rembrandt...

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I am sure as Catholics you have hear the phrase “Offer it up” as in offer up all your pain and suffering to Jesus. I know I have heard it and to me it often sounds like “Suck it up” a phrase we often times tell our kids when they get hut playing a sport or are unhappy about some work they have to do. It’s a phrase we use to tell them, some times life is hard, sometimes life ain’t fair, but get use to it.

Note: Cross posted from STATIC Youth’s Weblog.

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blog%20board It has been sometime for me to blog here on You Can Be New, the last posting was a found article I wanted to share, not truly my own work. I have started to blog again on my other site, STATIC Youth, and have really enjoyed the process. I forgot how much I enjoyed the process.

I think that is true with most things we do, we need to stop to understand how much it truly means to us. Their is the old saying, if you love something let it free, if it returns than the love is true. Or something like that. I think this is what applies to my blogging. I was blogging for two blogs everyday, writing the curriculum for my company and writing and teaching at my day job. I think the writing and creative thinking parts just kicked my butt. I tried to keep it up, but found that my ideas were lame, at best, and that my writing was not truly what I was proud of. Now some will say that none of my writing is anything to be proud of, and that my be. But I have a standard, and I like to keep to it.

I have seem myself grow through the blogging process. Over the past few days I have been re-reading some of the stuff I wrote, and for the most part was pleased with it all, well except for the spelling mistakes. But I also noticed a growth in the writing from month to month and year to year. I was proud of my growth and pleased with my convictions. So I have decided to blog once again.

I am not sure if the You can be New blog will be updated daily or not, I am concentrating on the STATIC Youth blog more, I am concentrating on my faith more. This blog deals with my faith, but in a indirect way, here I am looking at ways to improve my life, too find ways to expand my experiences were-as in the STATIC Youth blog I am taking a more direct look at my faith and how my faith effects life, world and others.

So for anyone who misses my blog’s I am back, and for everyone else… Here I am…

Paul

Excuses Begone!: How to Change Lifelong, Self-Defeating Thinking Habits

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My frustration levels are at an all time high, I feel the effects of no control and am ready to scream… This about sums up my current mood, if I twittered I would have posted it, and most likely received responses from friends and people I don’t know offering me words of wisdom I don’t want. But as it is I do blog, and so I will post my frustrations here, but unlike twitter I can express myself with a few more words, I will not be limited, my power to say as much or as little as I like is not taken away from me on my blog.

This over all feeling stems from the fact that power, my ability to make my own choice has been taken away from me. I am being forced to do something that I do not wish to do.

I think as humans we cherish our freewill, we consider it to be one of the most important aspects of our lives. I know I do… The ability to make up my own mind, to chose what I want or don’t want is, to me, the most important freedom I enjoy. All other freedoms stem from this one. Freewill is the mother of all others…

If I do not have the freedom of Freewill, than I could not choose to believe or not believe in God, with out freewill I could not choose to remain faithful or not, nor would I have the freedom to decide what kind of life I choose to live.

When we perceive our freewill is under attack we react, we fight back, if we can. The current problem is I have no ability to fight back, I have no freedom from this decision, and that weighs heavy on me.

The idea that I can not control the situation, the fact that I am being made to feel helpless is a very taxing idea, real or not, it is all the same. Since freewill is not a tangible object, not something that Wal-Mart sell, we are left with only or “feelings” and “perceptions” of what freewill is or does. To me, it is the essence of all other freedoms, it is the greatest of gifts from God and it is the very being of our humanhood. To have this freedom striped away from me, to have my ability to exercise it or not trampled on is a travesty.

In our current society we see this happen all the time and we see the effects of it in our everyday life. For me it is the fact that as part of my bankruptcy I must turn in my current vehicle and purchase a new vehicle with very limited funds (like I said I am in bankruptcy). The fact that the courts do not seem to care, that they seem to make it almost easer to just walk away is in it self a shame, but that’s another blog. The simple fact that I am being forced in to a situation that does not serve me and my interest the best, the simple fact that they have taken away my ability to use my freewill is dehumanizing. And before any of you start saying, “Well what did you expect, your in bankruptcy, it was your own bad choices that got you there in the first place”, all I can say is Yes I know, and You have no idea why I am in my current situation… My complainant is not about bankruptcy, but rather about the dehumanization of the process.

Example:

I my case I have to get rid of the current vehicle, it’s lease runs out in September, but the courts want me to return it now, fair enough. To be able to continue to work I need a dependable car, so I looked in to a  Kia, and inexpensive vehicle with a warranty. With the credit market tight, and the fact that I am in bankruptcy the payment would have been over $400 per mount, about what I am paying for my current lease. I asked for a used car, or the cheapest payment, but the condition of the bank would not allow it. I looked at a Ford dealership, won’t even consider me. So my options are limited.

So in-order to make the payments on the new vehicle my payments to the courts has to go down, logical I would say. Well the courts don’t seem to think so, in fact they won’t even allow me to skip a payment to have the down payment needed to get the new vehicle I need to get to work.

My lawyer than recommends that I just turn in the current, skip this payment and purchase a used vehicle with the whole $2000.00 I have. Here is the problem:

1. Not many reliable vehicles for that kind of money

2. By skipping my payment the courts can decide to toss out my case, leaving me holding the bag

3. I have a total breakdown due to the fact the our court system is (insert bad word here) up!

 

So, and I started off this blog, I and extremely frustrated, and ready to blow! I woke up at 3am this morning and was wide awake until 4, dozed in and out until 5:30 when my alarm went off… My 3am wake up call was a good time for me to practice my deep breathing skills and to say a few prayers to a select few saints… It will all work out, of this I am certain, like I have sated in this blog, we must have a positive attitude for a positive end result.

 

 

Paul

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This was sent to me from a friend in India, not sure who the original author is, he never stated it… But I thought I would share it…

Positive words.bmpI remember my dad teaching me the power of language  at a very young age. Not only did my dad understand that specific words affect our mental pictures, but he understood words are a powerful programming factor in lifelong success. 

One particularly interesting event occurred when I was eight. As a kid, I was always climbing trees, poles, and literally hanging around upside down from the rafters of our lake house. So, it came to no surprise for my dad to find me at the top of a 30-foot tree swinging back and forth. My little eight-year-old brain didn’t realize the tree could break or I could get hurt. I just thought it was fun to be up so high.

My older cousin, Tammy, was also in the same tree. She was hanging on the first big limb, about ten feet below me. Tammy’s mother also noticed us at the exact time my dad did. About that time a huge gust of wind came over the tree. I could hear the leaves start to rattle and the tree begin to sway. I remember my dad’s voice over the wind yell, "Bart, Hold on tightly." So I did. The next thing I know, I heard Tammy screaming at the top of her lungs, laying flat on the ground. She had fallen out of the tree.

I scampered down the tree to safety. My dad later told me why she fell and I did not. Apparently, when Tammy’s mother felt the gust of wind, she yelled out, "Tammy, don’t fall!" And Tammy did. fall.     

My dad then explained to me that the mind has a very difficult time processing a negative image. In fact, people who rely on internal pictures cannot see a negative at all. In order for Tammy to process the command of not falling, her nine-year-old brain had to first imagine falling, then try to tell the brain not to do what it just imagined.

Whereas, my eight-year-old brain instantly had an internal image of me hanging on tightly. This concept is especially useful when you are attempting to break a habit or set a goal. You can’t visualize not doing something. The only way to properly visualize not doing something is to actually find a word for what you want to do and visualize that.

For example, when I was thirteen years old, I played for my junior high school football team. I tried so hard to be good, but I just couldn’t get it together at that age. I remember hearing the words run through my head as I was running out for a pass, "Don’t drop it!" Naturally, I dropped the ball.     

My coaches were not skilled enough to teach us proper "self-talk." They just thought some kids could catch and others couldn’t. I’ll never make it pro, but I’m now a pretty good Sunday afternoon football player, because all my internal dialogue is positive and encourages me to win. I wish my dad had coached me playing football instead of just climbing trees. I might have had a longer football career.           

Here is a very easy demonstration to teach your kids and your friends the power of a toxic vocabulary. Ask them to hold a pen or pencil. Hand it to them. Now, follow my instructions carefully. Say to them, "Okay, try to drop the pencil." Observe what they do.

Most people release their hands and watch the pencil hit the floor. You respond, "You weren’t paying attention. I said TRY to drop the pencil. Now please do it again." Most people then pick up the pencil and pretend to be in excruciating pain while their hand tries but fails to drop the pencil.   

The point is made.         

If you tell your brain you will "give it a try," you are actually telling your brain to fail. I have a "no try" rule in my house and with everyone I interact with. Either people will do it or they won’t. Either they will be at the party or they won’t. I’m brutal when people attempt to lie to me by using the word try.

Do they think I don’t know they are really telegraphing to the world they have no intention of doing it but they want me to give them brownie points for pretended effort? You will never hear the words "I’ll try" come out of my mouth unless I’m teaching this concept in a seminar. 

If you "try" and do something, your unconscious mind has permission not to succeed. If I truly can’t make a decision I will tell the truth. "Sorry John. I’m not sure if I will be at your party or not. I’ve got an outstanding commitment. If that falls through, I will be here. Otherwise, I will not. Thanks for the invite."             

People respect honesty. So remove the word "try" from your vocabulary. My dad also told me that psychologists claim it takes seventeen positive statements to offset one negative statement. I have no idea if it is true, but the logic holds true. It might take up to seventeen compliments to offset the emotional damage of one harsh criticism.           

These are concepts that are especially useful when raising children.

Ask yourself how many compliments you give yourself daily versus how many criticisms. Heck, I know you are talking to yourself all day long. We all have internal voices that give us direction.         

So, are you giving yourself the 17:1 ratio or are you shortchanging yourself with toxic self-talk like, " I’m fat. Nobody will like me. I’ll try this diet. I’m not good enough. I’m so stupid. I’m broke, etc. etc."   

If our parents can set a lifetime of programming with one wrong statement, imagine the kind of programming you are doing on a daily basis with your own internal dialogue. Here is a list of Toxic Vocabulary words.   

Notice when you or other people use them. 

But: Negates any words that are stated before it.               

Try: Presupposes failure.     

If: Presupposes that you may not.   

Might: It does nothing definite. It leaves options for your listener.

Would Have: Past tense that draws attention to things that didn’t actually happen.

Should Have: Past tense that draws attention to things that didn’t actually happen (and implies guilt.)         

Could Have: Past tense that draws attention to things that didn’t actually happen but the person tries to take credit as if it did happen.             

Can’t/Don’t: These words force the listener to focus on exactly the opposite of what you want. This is a classic mistake that parents and coaches make without knowing the damage of this linguistic error.       

Examples:           

Toxic phrase: "Don’t drop the ball!"   

Likely result: Drops the ball     

Better language: "Catch the ball!"   

Toxic phrase: "You shouldn’t watch so much television."             

Likely result: Watches more television.   

Better language: "I read too much television makes people stupid. You might find yourself turning that TV off and picking up one of those books more often!"   

Exercise: Take a moment to write down all the phrases you use on a daily basis or any Toxic self-talk that you have noticed yourself

using. Write these phrases down so you will begin to catch yourself as they occur and change them.

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Here are the numbers:

  • 21 percent have learning disabilities
  • 7 times more likely to have ADHD
  • 65 percent graduate high school
  • 44 percent are undergrads in college
  • 42 percent are in graduate school
  • 10.3 percent seriously consider suicide
  • 4.6 percent attempt suicide
  • 27 percent are heavy drinkers
  • 30 percent use tobacco
  • 29 percent have carried a weapon
  • 1o percent under age 13 have had sex
  • 11 percent tried marijuana before age 13
  • 63 percent have had sex by the time they are high school seniors

 

What a list of numbers, what a shocking value and depending on what label I attach the the list will determine your reaction to the list. If I were to say that the list represents African-American’s we would be outraged, if it represented females we would scream sexism. If I were to tell you this was research from an third world nation we would say we expected this.

But if I tell you this is the numbers of our boy, here in America, most would just set it aside, think nothing more of it. Were is the outrage, were is the cry of unfair treatment. Lets look at some of the numbers again, using a comparison to girls here in America.

  • 72 percent of girls graduate from high school and only 65 percent of boys
  • 56 percent of undergraduates are girls and only 44 percent are boys
  • 24 percent of girls admit to drinking heavily as opposed to 27 percent of boy
  • 21 percent of girls use tobacco 30 percent boys
  • 4 percent of girls under age of 13 compared to 10 percent of boys under 13 have had sexual intercourse
  • 5 percent verses 11 percent of boys under the are of 13 tried marijuana

 

So I ask you one more time, were is the outraged, why are we not taking to the streets demanding that we save our boys. There are some who say, it’s about time, that girls have, for far to long, lived in the shadows of boys. And others that would say, someone has to win, why not the girls.

It saddens me to see our country like this, and trust me, there are a lot of things that make me sad about this county, but that is for another blog. This one is about the missing cry, the lost tear for our sons.

Have we gotten to a point in our evolution were boys are tossed to the sideline, all in the name of feminism? Have we gotten to the point in our history were we are willing to let one segment of our population got the sidelines? In some respects we have already gotten there, we have already created a class of citizens that are disposable. We have taught our sons and daughters that life is of no real value, that we can “terminate” life anytime we choose, so why are we surprised that we are willing, as a nation, to allow our boys to die a slow death.

America is a nation that is on the verge of a great change. We are standing at the edge of the cliff that will tumble us over the edge in to a future that will forever alter our great nation.

We just dint arrive here, we have been walking towards this cliff for years, taking very small steps. But as of late, our step has quickened, we are taking giant steps towards the edge. For the first time in our history we are about to step over the edge… to plunge in to the abyss…

The problem of our boys, the numbers above show that we as a nation have turned in to a nation of micro-issues. We grab on to “hot” issues and “fix” them, often times at the expense of others. We look at the single issue ignoring the multiple issues that are connected to it, that surround it.

To fix the fact that girls lagged behind in school, we tossed the boy to the side. We set up programs that directly hurt boys in the name of helping girls. We looked at the singular and not seeing the multiple.

Someone has to loose right? Someone needs to pay for the inequities we created, so why not our boys?

Look at the men we are creating, they use, to be boys, look around you, and ask yourself, why do we have families with out fathers, were did all the men go? I’ll tell you, we educated it out of them, all in the name of creating a fair and level playing field. Problem is, it was not fair nor was it level. We are not paying the price for it.

read the numbers above one more time, look at the percentages and ask yourself, were is the outrage?

Paul

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Ask yourself this one question, and than respond truthfully and I guarantee you will change your life forever.

Can a statement like that truly be true? Can one question alter your whole life, make that much of an impact on you that your life is totally different, that you charge a new course?

What sort of question must it be? Is it a question for one of your ancestors of Greek or Roman descent? A question of a great sage or from one of the eastern religions know for deep thoughts. A question from Buda or Krishna maybe, or did it come from Jesus or from one of the prophets?

Or maybe the question really doesn’t exist, maybe there is no one question that will change your life, maybe it’s all useless, we should just give up now, and not even search for the question.

Ask yourself this one question, and than respond truthfully and I guarantee you will change your life forever.

I know the question, and I will share it with you now, this one simple question will, if you allow it to, change your life forever. The rules are simple:

1. Read the question as it is, do not try to read anything in to it, there is no hidden message or meaning.

2. You must be open minded about the question.

3. You must give it some thought, this is not a question you can just simple put down any old response to.

4. You must be honest, you can not respond the way you think others want you to, you must respond with the truth as you know it at this moment.

5. You must be willing to take ownership of the responses, the only way to use the responses for agents of change, is to own them.

Ok, now that you have the rules, and you agree to them, we can move on, you will need to write the question down, it’s part of the ownership thing, by writing it down, in your own hand writing, it becomes yours.

Here is the question:

What really matters to you?

 

That’s it, that is the one question that will change your life. But remember, you have to allow it time to sink in, you have to give it deep thought. This is not a quick response question, but rather one of slow deep thinking.

Once you have your list or paragraphs or statements or what ever you decided to write, now comes the hard part. Now comes the part were you must look at that list and ask the following questions about it:

1. Is it (the feeling, action, goal) a positive?

2. Does it (feeling, action, goal) create a better world?

3. Will it help others?

4. Is it affirming?

The questions above a re designed to help you align your responses to a life changing action.  Example, if what really matters to me is money,than how is it a positive, how is it useful for a better world how will it help others and how will it be affirming to me?

To make a difference in our own lives, we must be willing to make a difference in the lives of others. No man (or woman) lives in a void, our actions or lack of actions affects the world around us, to truly become more we must be willing and able to affect others around us, in a positive and uplifting way.

The question “What really matters to you” is not a question about you, but really it is a question that will help you define your interactions with the world around you.

Good luck with the question, it truly can change your life.

Paul

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Emotions can help you or hinder you, it is up to you. I have often talked about how our attitudes will shape our our comes, how we can think our way in to a new you. The opposite is also true, we can think ourselves out of a new you, we can think ourselves in to the same old same old.

The power of positive thinking is only defeated by the power of negative thinking. The human mind is capable of many great things, it has the power to land a man on the moon and to start horrific wars, the same mind can do both. Our capability is only limited by our lack of imagination. Our greatness is with in us, and only our emotions keep us from achieving our goals.

The power of negative thinking can be overwhelming, and in today’s society, the negative takes the forefront, over shadowing all other emotions. We are encourage to feel the negative emotions, we are made to feel sub-human if we do not. New daily news feeds off of our fears, manufacturing crisis after crisis, our schools teach our children fear (unproven global warming science) and our government thrives off our fears grabbing ever larger portions of the privet sector.

We as a collective mind buy in to the fear, we all look for the negative emotions and try to use it to our advantage, we publically state our shock and outrage but privately we are celebrating the momentary power surge we receive. 

If we truly wish to change, to grow in to a better self we need to learn to control the negative emotions, we need to learn not to buy in to the mass hysteria that drives the masses. To so called “true feelings” of negatives need to diverted in to a positive. The task at hand is truly a monumental task, all the forces of humanity are working to control you, to scare you in to a submission, the choice is yours.

Here are some things to consider concerning negative emotions:

Anxiety and fear strips away courage and makes great performances impossible.

Doubt makes even the best decisions feel difficult and causes procrastination.

Anger rips your focus away from your goals.

Frustration can only serve to make you quit.

Guilt makes it impossible to enjoy any successes you achieve.

Jealousy and envy create dishonesty, hate and corruption. Your thoughts and emotions are the only things that can truly stop you.

 

Paul

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