Monthly Archives: June 2012

The Pamela Positive: The Positives of Serving Others

As I’ve found in my own experience, volunteering can be such a positive and valued experience for both the people helping, and the people who need the help. I’d love to share just some of the Positives I’ve observed for volunteers.

1- Be A Part of Something Greater. Often new volunteers find that the “product” — serving homeless people, helping microentrepreneurs, tutoring young mothers on their GEDs, is so meaningful that it’s hard to return to the corporate world. They feel a part of something greater, because it is so definitively clear how they are helping. We all want to feel we are caring for and helping others, and are part of a movement larger than ourselves.

2- Keep Your Skills Current. Use your current skills and ‘exercise’ them just as you would any muscle. Are you an attorney, administrative assistant, construction worker, public relations expert, manager? Put those needed skills to use, and expand them as you continue your work. Since you are not under the guise of a strict corporate manager, you will have more freedom to expand them in creative ways.

3- Attain New Skills and a Second Career. Once you have invested some time at the organization, ask to work in different areas or work on different business units. Express your desire to grow and adopt news skills. Try different areas in order to understand how the entire organization works. Learn for yourself, and learn to become valuable to the organization. You may find a new career!

4- Work on a Hobby. Do you love writing on the side? Perhaps you offer to write or contribute to their newsletter. Are you a hidden tech geek? Revamp their website. Is blogging your passion? Help them set up a blog and create a stronger brand presence. Explode a latent desire of your own to help others!

The Pamela Positive: “Love Many, Trust a Few, And Always Paddle Your Own Canoe”

“Love Many, Trust a Few, And Always Paddle Your Own Canoe”
–Terri, from Coudersport, PA, as seen on Dark Chocolate Dove Wrapper

Terri has it right.  What a joy to enjoy dark chocolate, which I love, with a truly inspired quote.

Life affords us so many ways to love, and how important we keep doing so.  At the same time, we have to be careful, and so Trust, or entrusting ourselves to others, perhaps must be a bit more rare.  I wish it weren’t so…however, everyone is on their pathway of personal growth.  So we must honor them, honor ourselves: We should always love, but not necessarily entrust to others.

As far as paddling one’s own canoe.  As my Oma says, “You’d better put a little elbow grease into that.”  She was always ensuring she had pulled her weight. In fact, when I went over to Oma’s for a sleepover as a young child, even at the age of 8 or 9, our fun together — was working together.   We scrubbed the kitchen floor on hands and knees, sharpened pencils, and wrote up a list for the freezer so she knew what was in there.  She taught me to care about being clean, ordered and organized, which made her home special.  She made it fun.  I loved working with my Oma.

Terri, we thank you for a quote which has delighted us all!

Which Country Wins The Day on Most Renewable Energy at 15%?

Congratulations to Germany, Iceland, New Zealand and Portugal, who lead the world in producing the most renewable energy, with more than 15% of their energy coming from renewable sources.  You are an example. I hope one day soon it’s 50%, then 100%.  Let’s think big.  For the U.S., we have a start at 2.5%, putting us at #7 among the G20 countries.

Regarding investments, South Korea had the biggest leap in investment, followed by China and Brazil. The U.S. was second in line in highest investing in renewable energy (behind China) for 2011.

The National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) reports that the G20 countries lead the world in utilizing renewable energy.  In 2010, these 20 countries produced more than 82% of the world’s renewable energy.  The NRDC defined it as “solar, wind, geothermal, tidal and wave electricity production.”  Wave electricity production refers to obtaining power from ocean surface waves.

It’s wonderful to ‘use the earth’ when it helps us live kindly, productively, and with intelligence.

Read the NRDC’s full report.

Photo courtesy of the NRDC.

The Pamela Positive: “The Soul Is the Core of Your Being” – Deepak Chopra

“The soul is the core of your being. Your body is in your soul. Your mind is in your soul. The whole universe is in your soul, and your soul is part of the universal consciousness.”

— Deepak Chopra, in an interview with Oprah

Deepak Chopra is an India-born, American author and lecturer, focusing on spirituality and mind-body health.  He began his career as a doctor, before moving into alternative medicine.  He focuses on meditation and spiritual practices, and the effect of one’s thoughts and emotions on one’s physical health.  He is a prominent figure in the New Age movement, and the author of more than 65 books, including 19 New York Times bestsellers.  He has sold more than 20 million copies.  His books include The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, Buddha: A Story of Enlightenment, and Jesus: A Story of Enlightenment.  Deepak and his wife, Rita, have been married for over 30 years, and they have two children.

Read Deepak’s full interview with Oprah here.

“The First Thing You Have to Do Is Say Thank You” – Recommendation by J. Kermit Campbell, Former CEO of Herman Miller

J. Kermit Campbell, Former CEO of Herman Miller, has some wise advice for us. A very insightful CEO, it applies to any line of work we’re in–as well as any part of life.  We remember that success is not just about climbing the ladder; it’s about who you are and how you lead your day to day.

From Mr. Campbell:

“There’s an old saying at Herman Miller: the first thing you have to do is make sure you tell folks thank you. Then, you give them a picture of where you’re going, so they have hope and do the work necessary to get to the other side. You will often be surprised by [their] resilience.”

So before you can lead or start your day, always say thank you. Appreciate, appreciate, appreciate… whether it is the person who opens the door for you, executes on a marketing campaign, closes a deal, or smiles at you on the street.  Then, if needed, you can provide the inspiring direction. And with that pervasive tone of “thank you,” you have allowed your team to be filled with positive energy.

We keep that beautiful love of gratitude going throughout our lives.  When we do so, we are sure to live a life of love and success.

Herman Miller is a leading furniture company, founded by D. J. DePree, with a more than 100-year history.  They focus on innovation, and designing products to create a better world.  J. Kermit Campbell is a former CEO of Herman Miller, and the current Lead Independent Director of SPX Corporation.  He is an investor or board member for a number of companies and charitable organizations.