Tag Archives: Appreciation

The Classic Pamela Positive: Don’t Just Stop and Smell the Flowers

“Stop and smell the flowers” is a good starting point.  But why not stay with the flower?

Have you ever really looked at what makes up the flower? Its petals, the stamen, the actual layout and folding over of different petals… it’s quite remarkable.

Appreciate the wisdom behind its creation.

Its unfolding process as it blooms…

And its journey of growth.

It’s simple and complex in its beauty and expression.

And so are you. Appreciate the beautiful simplicity and complexity of you and of each of our fellow men, women and children. Be open and beautiful; endure through your growth.

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The Classic Pamela Positive: When You’re at the Table, You’re Open and Your Defenses Are Down

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“People want that gathering together. The table is magical. When you’re at the table, you’re open and your defenses are down.” – Lidia Bastianich, host of PBS “Lidia’s Italy”

Mealtimes seem to be a time of the past. We eat in our cars and desks or even holding a powerbar walking out the door… and yet Lidia points out how we can find deep caring and nourishment at the table.  It’s not just sharing food, but also sharing of our hearts and feelings.  It’s a time to be a sounding board and to have sounding boards…from people who truly care about you.  It’s a time to relax, and yet also profound as some of the most important issues in your life may come out in a casual way.

Don’t miss this time with your loved ones.  “The table is magical.”  Or I might add  “The people at the table are magical.”

Lidia Matticchio Bastianich (born on February 21, 1947, in Pula, Croatia–then a part of Italy), is an American chef, television host, author, and restaurateur.  Specializing in Italian and Italian-American cuisine, Lidia has been a regular contributor to public television cooking show lineups since 1998. In 2011, she launched her fourth TV series Lidia’s Italy in America. She also owns several Italian restaurants in the U.S. in partnership with her daughter Tanya Bastianich Manuali and her son, Joe Bastianich, including Felidia (founded with her ex-husband, Felice), Del Posto, Esca, and Becco in Manhattan; Lidia’s Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and Lidia’s Kansas City in Kansas City, Missouri.

Bio Source: Wikipedia

Pamela’s Weekly Words of Wisdom: Celebrate the Beauty of Balance!

cairn-437303_640We’re all here to help each other, and part of that is supporting balance.   And one of the ways we can do this is to encourage your team to share their goals outside of work.   In so doing, this will help your organization’s mission, too.

It’s important to have outside lives and interests.  You have to begin by recognizing those first for yourself.  Your team will see you modeling this balance and how it makes you a whole, fully giving person.

Why do we try to encourage our team to have outside interests, and to share their goals? We know UniversalGiving can’t be everything for everyone (even me :)).  Balance helps keep people energized and refreshed. They maintain strong critical thinking skills and positive energy. Your team also feels they can be transparent about what their goals are. Continue reading

The Classic Pamela Positive: “We Have Only This Moment, Sparkling Like a Star in Our Hand.”

“Begin now. We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand and melting like a snowflake.”

—Paula Best

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This is one of my favorite quotes… that “this moment… [is] sparkling like a star in our hand… and melting like a snowflake.”

Any moment that is sparkling like a star in our hand means that it is precious. And every moment is… find the joy, the sparkle, the love, the warmth of the moment…

And then… make sure you know it is precious, for Paula goes on to state that each moment is “melting like a snowflake.” That means it’s gone.

So was your last moment spent in joy or frustration? In gratitude or upset? Did it help resolve or move forward or cause more consternation? Even in the challenges, our moments can still be constructive. How I learn from this, striving to appreciate the “star and melting snow” of each moment myself.

                                                                              —✶—

Paula Best is a mixed-media artist out of New Mexico.  She owns PINK Blackbird and creates fun and whimsical designs for cards, rubber stamps, and charms.  Her art often includes inspiring and humorous messages.

 

The Pamela Positive: Peyton March on Obtaining the Things We Crave Most

There is a wonderful mythical law that the three things we crave most in life – happiness, freedom, and peace of mind – are always attained by giving them to someone else.” – Peyton March

hand-2000354_1280Peyton Conway March (December 27, 1864 -1955) was an American soldier and Army Chief of Staff.  He had enormous influence in preparing America for World War I, and was highly committed to upholding freedom.

March was the son of Francis Andrew March, who was a founder of modern comparative linguistics in English.  He was among the first professors to advocate English be taught in universities.

Peyton March fought in the Philippines during the Spanish-American War.  During the Russo-Japanese War, he traveled as an American military attaché with the Japanese army, and he also worked with General MacArthur.  March was promoted to brigadier general during World War I, and later to Army Chief of Staff.


Bio

The Pamela Positive: Dag Hammarskjold Gives Hope to the World

Dag Hammarskjold was such a wonderful model of what the U.N. can be and do.  As Secretary-General of the United Nations from 1953 to 1961, Hammarskjold was known for his unrelenting energy in striving to create fairness, harmony, peace and collaboration in many corners of our world.  He represented hope and reconciliation for so many.

Hammarskjold flew around the world to try to help so many countries needing support–and independent of whether there was an economic interest there, as it should be.  He acted as a force for the U.N., representing fair involvement for all countries: for example, during one Arab crisis in 1958, the U.S. and Britain sent troops to help Lebanon and Jordan. But Hammarskjold was able to get removal of these troops, and one-sided involvement in the crisis, to stop. He then brokered Egypt lifting its blockade of Syria (which would not join the Arab League.)

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In the 1950s he helped obtain the release of U.S. airmen held captive in China. In approaching the Suez Crisis, when Egypt nationalized the canal, Hammarskjold was able to broker French, British and Egyptian collaboration to keep it open.  Meanwhile, Israel attacked Egypt and the peace process was upset.  With Mr. Hammarskjold’s leadership, U.N. Forces were able to maintain a peaceful solution until a longer term solution was reached.  Laos faced extreme danger and he was able to place UN representatives there, which provided watchful protection.  He became part of a very longterm process against apartheid, meeting several times with the Union of South Africa and striving to open up attitudes of equality and fairness regarding race.

Hammarskjold’s last challenge was the crisis in the Congo where violent civil war was ensuing. Here he had brokered leaders to  meet in neutral territory to resolve the conflict.   Unfortunately, his plane was shot down and he did not survive.

Dag Hammarskjold was mourned by the world. He was seen as an extremely strong leader led by principles; absolutely tireless and needing little sleep. It was as if he were “on call” for the world.

“The world in which I grew up in was dominated by principles and ideals…I inherited a belief that no life was more satisfactory than one of selfless service to your country or humanity.  This sacrifice required a sacrifice of all personal interests, but likewise the courage to stand up unflinchingly for your convictions.”

Hammarskjold also created a meditation room or peace room in the U.N.  It is a place only for thoughts, no words, and embraces all types of prayers.  There is a stone in the middle of the room with nothing on it, and yet a shaft of light shines directly there. It is dedicated as an altar to harmony and freedom that is worshipped in many forms, by different countries and peoples, in many varied ways all over the world.

The Classic Pamela Positive: Celebrate True Wealth

Wealth is a state of mind and life. We tend to associate poverty with money. But poverty can be mental, emotional or spiritual poverty. I am often struck by this in my travel and volunteering in developing nations. Often, the divorce rates are low. Families not only stay together, but also spend time together. They gather food from the fields together, cook together and share meals together.

Contrast us: 15 minute family dinners if we are lucky. Fast-food and food distanced from its natural base. We eat alone; we eat in our cars. Divorces are easier to get, and in our mind it can be easier to allow those thoughts in as a possibility, rather than work through critical issues. So we lose the connection to family. We lose the connection to the local farm. We can lose the connection to long-term commitment.

We lose our greatest asset in natural wealth: relationships. Relationships with ourselves, our families, the earth. This wealth creates happy, balanced, productive, lower stress lifestyles, because we are connected in the way we are meant to be.

Further, we often pass by our heritage and where we come from. In many emerging nations, and especially in the continent of Africa, we see tribes value their connection to their heritage as primary importance even above their nationality. There is a deep-rooted connection to rituals and history which keeps people grounded in who they are, and the deeper, long-term meaning of being a part of a larger community in their lives.

Poverty is about money, at times. It has to be addressed as people should have the opportunity to live productive lives and make choices about what they would like to devote their lives to. Poverty is also about our well-being. Often when we get beyond “money poverty,” we forget “well-being poverty,” and get trapped in a go-go-go consumer culture.

I hope we can celebrate the healthy wealth that is accessible to us all in positive, committed relationships with ourselves, one another, our families, our earth, our communities and our heritage. How wonderful this is available to us all.