Tag Archives: joy

The Classic Pamela Positive: “Make the Most of the Abilities We Have” – Jim Abbott

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“Never allow the circumstances of your life to become an excuse. People will allow you to do it. But I believe we have a personal obligation to make the most of the abilities we have.”
– Jim Abbott

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Jim Abbott is a former Major League baseball pitcher, who played despite having been born without a right hand. He played for teams including the California Angels, New York Yankees, and Chicago White Sox. In 1993, Abbott threw a no-hitter against the Cleveland Indians, and in 1988 pitched the final game to win the United States an unofficial gold medal in the Summer Olympics. Throughout his career, teams tried to exploit the fact that Abbott played with one hand, but their tactics were never effective. Today, Abbott works as a motivational speaker, living in California with his wife, two children and their dog. His parents still live in Michigan, where he grew up. Abbott and his family take the summer off each year to stay at the lake and visit with family and friends.

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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.

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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: We Carry Our Weather Around With Us

“We carry our weather around with us.” – Stephen Covey

What a wonderful encouragement from Stephen Covey.  No matter if our day seems cloudy or rainy, either from the outside weather or from tough news or a challenging day, we determine our weather.

We establish the climate outlook of our minds, conversations…We shape the weather pattern of our communications; we forecast the rain, sun or clouds of our expectations.   We are in charge of our own weather, and our weather determines our hopes for the future.

Thank you, Stephen, for your life devoted to one of encouragement and positivity.

Stephen Covey is a speaker and author, writer of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.  His work focuses primarily on leadership, family and living with principle.  He is a professor at the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University.  He and his wife, Sandra, have nine children and fifty-two grandchildren.

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

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“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!

The Classic Pamela Positive: Happiness: “Spending Time with People You Love and Who Love You”

“It is only a slight exaggeration to say that happiness is the experience of spending time with people you love and who love you.” –Daniel Kahneman, nobel laureate

Gifts and giving.  We associate so much of that with happiness.  Yet our one true Happiness is Loving Others. Oh, that sweet presence to just be around those we cherish and feel at home with!

Daniel Kahneman is an Israeli-American psychologist and Nobel laureate.  He is known for his work in the psychology of decision-making.  He was born in Tel Aviv, spent his childhood in France, and moved to Israel in the late 1940s.  He studied psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and began his career as a lecturer there.  Kahneman has published extensively in psychology, and received the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics in 2002 for his work on prospect theory.  He is currently on the faculty at Princeton.

The Classic Pamela Positive: Do It Anyway

Do It Anyway

People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered.
Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies.
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and sincere, people may deceive you.
Be honest and sincere anyway.

What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight.
Create anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous.
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, will often be forgotten.
Do good anyway.

Give the best you have, and it will never be enough.
Give your best anyway.

In the final analysis, it is between you and God.  It was never between you and them anyway.

This poem is widely attributed to Mother Teresa, after it was found hanging on a wall in her home for children in Calcutta.  It is a revised version of “The Paradoxical Commandments,” written by Dr. Kent M. Keith.  You can read more about the story on our UniversalGiving blog, PhilanthroPost.

The Pamela Positive: “Intuitions of What Work, Love, Human Relationship, and Health Can Be”

“…intuitions of what work, love, human relationship, and health can be.”

Charles Eisenstein points to a world that is divine.

It’s a sincere manifestation of positivity and living at its best. It strips away self-focus so that we can conjoin with a greater nature. Actually, the self, and technological connections, don’t define us. Rather, principles of love, kindness and truth amongst ourselves, and in coordination with nature, are what create this new life.

Let’s embrace what Mr. Eisenstein is putting forth in his treatise The Ascent of Humanity.  We can encourage ourselves to ascend together: to a place of goodness where each part benefits the other.  It’s a new reality, and he encourages us to not accept anything less.  This new world is coming.

The Ascent of Humanity

Need the most sublime achievements of art, music, literature, science, and technology be built upon the wreckage of the natural world and the misery of its inhabitants?

We intuit also that something similar is possible collectively…Another way of being is possible, and it is right in front of us, closer than close; that much is transparently certain. Yet it slips away so easily that we hardly believe it could be the foundation of life; so we relegate it to an afterlife and call it Heaven, or we relegate it to the future and call it Utopia.

Underlying the vast swath of ruin our civilization has carved is not human nature, but the opposite: human nature denied. This denial of human nature rests in turn upon an illusion, a misconception of self and world…the reconception of the self… is underway.

Saints and mystics have tried for thousands of years to teach us how we are trapped in a delusion about who we are. This delusion inevitably brings about suffering, and eventually a crisis that can only be resolved through a collapse, a surrender, and an opening to a state of being beyond previous self-limitation. These spiritual teachings have helped me realize, at least partway, my intuitions of what work, love, human relationship, and health can be.  

The examples of what life is surround me and define what is normal. Do I see anyone around me whose work is their joy, whose time is their own, whose love is their passion? It can’t happen. Be thankful, say the voices, that my job is reasonably stimulating, that I feel “in love” at least once in a while, that the pain is manageable and life’s uncertainties under control. Let good enough be good enough.

… trying harder can never work.  Soon, though, this mode of being will come to an end, to be replaced by a profoundly different understanding of the self, and a profoundly different relationship between human and nature.

The root and the epitome of separation is the discrete, isolated self of modern perception: the “I am” of Descartes, the “economic man” of Adam Smith…Technology distances us from nature and insulates us from her rhythms. For example, most Americans’ lives are little affected by the seasons of the year. We eat the same food year-round, shipped in from California; air conditioning keeps us cool in the summer; heating warm in the winter. Natural physical limitations of muscle and bone no longer limit how far we can travel, how high we can build, or the distance at which we can communicate. Each advance in technology distances us from nature, yes, but also frees us from natural limitations. Hence, the “ascent”. But how can all these improvements add up to the world we find ourselves in today?

Even in the darkest days, everyone senses a higher possibility, a world that was meant to be, life as we were meant to live it. Glimpses of this “world of wholeness and beauty” have inspired idealists for thousands of years, and echo in our collective psyche as notions of Heaven, an Age of Aquarius, or Eden…

Source: Introduction, The Ascent of Humanity by Charles Eisenstein

Charles Eisenstein graduated from Yale and spent ten years as a Chinese-English translator.  He is currently teaching at Goddard College.  He is also the author of Sacred Economics and The Yoga of EatingVisit his website to read more about The Ascent of Humanity.