A Fresh Start on Life

11_29_16-imageToday is a great day to hit the reset button.

When you reach the end of the journey, and you’re looking back on your life, do you want to be one of the people who are glad they did, or one of the people who wish they had?

Start doing the things today that will matter to you tomorrow. Don’t leave this world with regrets. The best inheritance you can leave your children is an example of how to live fully. Live your life so that your children can tell their children that you not only stood for something wonderful—you acted on it Continue reading

What the World Needs is More Kite Flyers and Bridge Builders

kite-flyerThe story has been passed on from generation to generation: It is said that in 1855, the great Niagara Suspension Bridge was built by flying a kite across the 855-foot chasm. From there, the workers on the other side started pulling on the kite string.

Attached to the kite string was a cord. Attached to the cord was a rope.  Attached to the rope was a wire. Attached to the wire was a cable—strong and sure.

Our world needs more kite flyers and bridge builders right now. If you have a big idea or social project in mind, have confidence that you can bridge the gap between the dream and the reality. Step one is to take step one. Just fly your kite to the other side and go from there.

Big positive changes are seldom accomplished all at once; it’s usually a matter of one small step leading to another. What are you waiting for? Go fly a kite!

An excerpt from the best-selling book, One (How many people does it take to make a difference?) by Dan Zadra and Kobi Yamada. To see the One book and video, go here: http://zadracreative.wpengine.com/dan-zadras-books/

What Isn’t Tried Won’t Work

Procrastination and second-guessing are the 
mortal enemies of spontaneous brilliance and action.

Do you hear that noise? It’s the sound of windows of opportunity slamming shut all around you. In today’s fast-paced and competitive world, ideas and opportunities won’t keep. You either do something with your best ideas—and fast—or someone else will.

Does this mean that we should rush our ideas to market, whether they are ready or not? No, but it does mean that speed to market is more important than waiting around for total perfection. To put it another way, a good idea delivered today may be way more valuable than a perfect idea delivered next year. Continue reading

What’s More Important— Goodness or Greatness?

basketball hoop on barnHe may be the greatest college coach who ever lived. Yet his friends, family, players, and millions of fans remember him more for his goodness than his greatness.

He lived to be 99. He coached basketball for 27 years at UCLA, winning 10 National Championships, a record that remains unequaled. He is the only person ever to be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame as both a player and a coach.

Humble and gracious, he kept track of each of his players long after they had gone on to other things, and most of them could quote his life philosophy by heart:

“What you are as a person is far more important that what you are as a basketball player,” was one of his messages.

“Learn as if you were to live forever; live as if you were to die tomorrow,” was another.

 “Don’t give up on your dreams, or your dreams will give up on you,” was yet another.

 After 53 years of marriage, his wife Nell—the love of his life—died of cancer. For the next 25 years the old coach sat down on the 21st of every month and wrote her a love letter, placing it in one of her favorite places with his previous letters.

At age 97, in his last public interview, a member of the audience asked him what he would like God to say to him when he stood at heaven’s gate. Coach John Wooden replied simply, “Well done.”

Louisiana poet William Arthur Ward could have been thinking of Coach Wooden when he wrote: “Each of us will one day be judged by our standard of life, not by our standard of living; by our measure of giving, not by our measure of wealth; by our simple goodness, not by our seeming greatness.”


What Can One Person Do?

What can one person do?Answer: Do what you can.

The world is made up of seven billion you’s and me’s. Every day, with every action, large or small, you are either adding to the sum of beauty, joy and understanding in the world—or you are subtracting from it.

Read the news lately? The headlines are full of bigotry, suspicion and fear. What can one person do? Just do what you can, and that will make a bigger difference than you might think. Here’s how:

When you and I think about the people around us, the world has more care in it.

When you and I stand up for what’s right, the world has more justice in it.

When you and I send a card or an e-mail to lift someone’s spirits, the world has more light in it.

When you and I control our temper, the world becomes more reasonable.

When you and I reach out and lend a hand, the world becomes more giving.

When you and I forgive a wrong, the world becomes more peaceful.

When you and I inspire or encourage a child, the world becomes more hopeful.

There is no such thing as a small influence, or a small act of kindness, or an unimportant person, or an unimportant day. You may not be able to see the impact of your actions, but it’s all connected and it all matters.

As William James put it: “Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.”

You Alone, of All God’s Creatures, Have this Gift

JUnne 22_16 IMage for BlogForward-looking imagination—the ability to visualize the future state of things to come—is one of humanity’s most spectacular gifts. “For the first time in all time,” wrote CalTech professor Robert L. Sinsheimer, “a living creature understands its origins and can undertake to design its future.”

The animals made for running may outrun us; the animals made for swimming may outswim us; the animals made for climbing may out-climb us. But you alone, of all God’s creatures, have the ability to reconstruct what has gone before, to learn from it, and to envision the future shape of things to come.

Consider this: Every candle ever lit; every home, bridge, company, community or cathedral ever built; every act of human kindness, daring, artistry, invention or advancement started first in someone’s imagination, and then worked its way out. You have that same beautiful gift. Now is the time to use it for good.

Where will your imagination take you in the coming years? Where COULD it take you?

An excerpt from the upcoming “Trust Your Crazy Ideas” book by Dan Zadra. To order your advance copy, click on the “RESERVE YOUR COPY” box on the right.

Keep Your Hoping Machine Running

Guthrie Stamp
Some of the best New Year’s resolutions are also the simplest.

In the 1940’s and 1950’s, a plain-talking folk singer from Okemah, Oklahoma changed the way millions of Americans thought about life, love, work and society. Using nothing but his voice, an old guitar, and some occasional stick figure drawings, Woody Guthrie reminded our nation that a good life, after all, is made up of little things.

Through the years, Guthrie composed more than 3,000 songs and poems, drew more than 500 illustrations, and wrote three books, always romancing the beauty and significance of everyday life. As far as Woody was concerned, there is no such thing as an insignificant person, task, contribution or intention. Everything and everyone counts. Continue reading