The Imperfect Blog Post

One day a few weeks ago, my friend Carlos M. Santiago pointed to his head and commented that, “Bad days are in here.”  I immediately wanted to write a blog about his wise words, for I know that at different points in my life, I have created a great deal of misery for myself centered around an abundance of repetitive fear-based thoughts.  You know the kind of thoughts that set the body tossing and turning in the middle of the night.

I even came up with a clever title for this blog, “Good Days Are An Inside Job.”

But right now I’m not feeling so clever.  I’m feeling like I have a ton of work to do in the next few days, work that at this point looks more like a limitation than an extraordinary result.

I reckon that right now I’m creating a bad day in my head.  How can this be?  I went to meditation and a yoga class this morning.  This condition is simply not a good fit for me, as I am The Limitations To Extraordinary Results Guy.  But alas it is how I feel at the moment.

I realized just before writing this that the bad day I’m creating in my head stems from the desire to be perfect.  To perfectly plan out the rest of my Sunday, to write the perfect blog post, to have a perfectly perfect day.

How many times do you avoid going for your dreams because you fear that you won’t do something perfectly?

I had an amazing experience with imperfection earlier this week.  I went across town to donate blood.  While I was sitting waiting to donate, I remembered that I would be advised not to do any strenuous activities for the rest of the day.  The problem was that I was very excited about going to my regular hot yoga class later that evening.

 I was bummed until I figured out an imperfect solution.  I could still go to the yoga class and just sit or lay down and breathe deeply.

 A perfect solution?  Not by a long shot.  But this imperfect solution ended up being deeply rewarding.  I had an amazing opportunity to experience a yoga class in a whole new way.  I also learned that it feels better to be where the activity you want to participate in is going on than to be miles away feeling awful that you can’t participate fully.

So today, I am writing an imperfect blog post for you.

I give you this imperfect blog on a Monday because I want to encourage you to take action towards your dreams and not let desire to be perfect and fear of failure keep you from participating fully in your life.  The next time perfectionism starts to immobilize you and keep you from moving forward, just remember that imperfection is done with the project and on to the next, to the next one, while perfectionism has barely started on the first.  (This is a very imperfect saying and most likely not totally accurate, so feel free to choose another one to motivate you.)

Just figure out how to “Go for it!” (Note – I’m using a cliché at the end of my blog, very imperfect.)

The Imperfect Game of The Day

The next time you feel perfection stopping you in your tracks, follow this four-step process:

1.  Say, “Bad days are in here,” and point to your head.

2.  Say, “I create imperfect but good days, for good days are an inside job” and point again to your head.

3.  Say, “I’m going for it.”

4.  Go For It!

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On The Other Side of Mistaken Assumptions

When we talk with people we have never met on the phone, we naturally observe their voice and make assumptions about them based on their voice.  I speak in a unique way, which is often called a speech impediment.  People naturally make assumptions based on the sound of my voice and I can understand how easy that is to do.  I know that if I had never met myself and heard the sound of my voice on the phone, I would probably also make mistaken assumptions about my intellect and ability to function in the world.

Gentle ways exist of showing people that the assumptions they make about us aren’t true.  For example, since I realize that people I have just met might naturally make assumptions about me based on my speech, I take care to converse with them in an intelligent manner.

They then know by the content of what I bring to our conversation that their assumptions are not accurate.  On other occasions, I just say at the beginning of our conversation that my speech is unique and if they have any problem understanding me to ask for clarification.

What mistaken assumptions do people commonly make about you upon first meeting you?  What would be some gentle ways of showing them that these assumptions are not accurate?

Far more important even than the mistaken assumptions other people make about us are the mistaken assumptions we make about the nature of our own limitations.  For example, at different points in my life, I assumed that because of coordination issues, I could not write more than a few sentences longhand, wash dishes or do yoga.  Now I fill up notebooks with my writings and often go to yoga class six or seven times a week.

And I discovered that I’m a pro at washing dishes.  OK, I admit it, sometimes I let them pile-up before I take responsibility for washing them.  But eventually I get the job done

What mistaken assumptions have you made about yourself in the past and since disproven?

These reflections make me curious about the mistaken assumptions we believe about ourselves that we still hold as accurate.  These are the assumptions that make us say, I can’t, as if it is the cold hard truth, when in fact it could just be a misunderstanding of ourselves.

From a lifetime of experience with a so-called speech impediment, I know that there can be a great deal of room for misunderstanding.  We especially have a tendency to misunderstand what we are truly capable of.  It often takes patience and courage to get past our misunderstandings of ourselves. The reward is once we get past these misunderstandings, we are freer to live a confident life and pursue our dreams.

Game of the Day

When you listen to yourself and look at your life, what assumptions do you make about your limits?

How would your life be different if you had the confidence that these were mistaken assumptions and not accurate?

Your Ship Has Come In

So come on, get on board

for today you are living the once

barely reachable dream

of your ancestors.

And this moment is your turn

to create your heroic dream

for your life and generations to come.

Your future wants to dance

with you right now.  So arise,

play, laugh and dance.

Game of the Day

What does this post mean to you?

What is your next step?

How will you celebrate it?

A Formula For A Happy Life

 An essential note: This formula is simple, and not always easy.

Unwanted circumstances occur: flat tires, high drama,

birth trauma, headaches, heart aches, heart attacks,

stock market crashes, computer crashes, road closures,

foreclosures, drought, flood, mud, muck, yuck.

Think!  What unwanted circumstances are you allowing to cause struggle and fear in your life?  You know the circumstances that are frustrating you right now.

This is why I ask.  Unwanted circumstances equal your freedom to make a choice:

You can disable your circumstances.

You can create problems out of your circumstances.

You can birth limitations from your circumstances.

You can make your circumstances as fixed and hard as a stone.

OR

You can seize the freedom to create opportunities from your circumstances.

You can discover the gifts in your circumstances.

You can explore the possibilities within your circumstances.

You can realize that your circumstances are as fluid water cascading over stones.

You are amazingly powerful!  You have the power to create your happy life.

Game of the Day

What emotions come up for you as you read this post?

Think of a time when you have transformed an unwanted circumstance into a circumstance that brought you joy.  How did you go about creating this transformation?

When you encounter your next unwanted circumstance, what will you do to recreate it into an opportunity for happiness and growth?

The Bottom Line Is Joy

Without happiness, our work can become the serious mechanics of making money instead of the joy of making a living.  When times get tough at work, often one of the first things we cut from our day is our satisfaction.  We replace satisfaction with stress, frustration and the like.

I’ve started reflecting upon this question:

Are we more productive and creative at work when we are happy or when we are miserable?

Some days when I’m working I notice that I can indeed become stressed out, frustrated and unhappy.  These feelings have actually occurred more often than I like to admit.

And the funny thing is that part of my training has included becoming a Certified Laughter Yoga Leader and Teacher, as well as, a Laughter Life Coach.

One would think that these three credentials would inoculate me from creating miserable days at work.

However, I have found that even these great credentials don’t save me from miserable days at work; rather it takes constant practice to create joy and bring it to the job.

At work, we can play and have fun, while being productive, if we keep practicing and practicing.

This practice is important because being miserable not only limits our quality of life but our ability to be creative and achieve results.

While the circumstances of our work may be challenging, we have the power to create these circumstances as playful and rewarding, rather than miserable.  We can move from feeling like a victim of our work to being the joyful hero of our work.

The key is the daily practice of creating ways to play and laugh at work while still being productive.

So let’s all create happiness, quality, results and a strong bottom line!

Game of the Day

How can you create happiness at work even when the circumstances are challenging?

Keeping Both Our Walkie Talkies In Good Working Order


This morning, after yoga class, I was talking with a friend and noticed his Commodore 64 T-shirt.  We were both amazed to think that about thirty years ago the Commodore 64 was a hot computer.  My friend commented that now our cell phones are probably many times as powerful as that computer was.

And that is how far computer hardware has progressed.  Just think of the Internet and Google.

When I was a kid, I was thrilled to be given a set of World Book Encyclopedias.  Now with Google, I have access to millions of times the information contained within the encyclopedia set that I was so proud of.

Reflecting on this vein of thought, I am stunned to notice that as technology has advanced at a mind-boggling clip, the needs of the human body for health have stayed basically the same for the past thirty years.  We still need sleep, exercise, and sensible nutrition to stay healthy.

Good health is important for the typical reasons often cited – to feel good, to avoid sickness and the like.

Maintaining good health is also important to realizing our dreams.  Our bodies are the vehicles through which we achieve our dreams.

I’ve started thinking of my body and mind like the set of Radio Shack walkie talkies I had as a kid.  The fun is in being able to communicate clearly from one to the other.

When we maintain good health, our minds can transmit signals of abundance and our bodies can respond to this information appropriately and with enthusiasm.

Technology is expanding at an exponential rate, yet the basic needs of our bodies remain the same.  The trick is to find and consistently engage in the diet, the exercises, and the sleeping patterns that keep our bodies and minds happy and working together.  Then our results can fill us with joy and communicate clearly to the world.

Game of the Day 

How do you currently use exercise, nutrition and sleep to create your dreams?

 What is your next step?

Putting Our Hopes Into Action

One of our greatest abilities is believing that things that frustrate us and cause us pain can change.  This is hope.  When we actively express hope in our lives through our thoughts, words and actions, hope becomes even more powerful.

For example, when our car won’t start because of a dead battery, it is one thing to sit in the car and hope that it will suddenly start.  It is another thing to put this hope into action by calling a friend and asking them to drive over with jumper cables.

In another instance, instead of just hoping for a cleaner environment, my friends Kris and Ryan, through example, have showed me that putting that hope in action can be as simple as picking up litter when out walking or canoeing.

There are multitudes of ways to put our hopes into action.  Exciting!

Game of the day

What changes are you hoping for in your life?  What steps are you taking to put that hope into action?