Posts Tagged ‘joy’


Monday, March 10th, 2014

While growing up I experienced a brother who hated all the time. He was full of hate and his life went in a imagesnegative direction because of that. He was later diagnosed as a paranoid violent schizophrenic, but even before his illness appeared his real illness was that he was hateful and angry whenever he did not get what he wanted. He has not changed his behavior since he was first born, and he is now sixty-six years old.

All of us have moments of disappointment, frustration and anger.  How we respond to those moments determines the quality of our lives.  I come close to experiencing  the emotion of “hate” when I see great injustice and abuse in the world, but rarely do I engage this emotion. My good friend and publicist has thought about this topic and provides some insights below


When my mom was good, she was very good, and some of the advice she gave me throughout her life was invaluable.  One piece that came to mind today was to avoid the use of the word hate; to avoid hating.  The word itself, she explained, evoked emotion, such strong negative emotion that it overwhelmed all the good you might feel.  Hating took up space that should be there for good feelings. Hate, she told me, should be reserved for the most odious of people, circumstances, and things – for when no other description or emotion could encompass the negativity.  It should be parsed out gingerly because it cost us so much.  (more…)


Friday, March 7th, 2014

My good friend and client, Neale Donald Walsch, has written extensively about what really matters. In his opinion, ninety-nine percent of the time ninety-nine percent of what human beings are thinking and doing does not really matter. Although perhaps overstated, on at least one level I agree with Neale. The majority of people spend the majority of their time on trivia. Much of this time is spent on earning money, raising one’s social profile, and generally surviving psychologically and materially in the twenty-first century. I am as guilty as anyone.

For Neale what really matters is connecting with our higher selves in a way that allows all of us to experience the ultimate joy and majesty of being alive. We do not have to create great monuments or works of art to achieve this level of awareness; it is entering into and acting from this state of higher awareness that really matters. No one is exempt from the opportunity to gain and maintain this level of awareness on a daily basis. When we are in this state of awareness it is more likely that what we say and do will really matter.

Do my blogs really matter? Do the books I represent really matter? Do my beach walks, tennis games and golf matches really matter? For me they matter a great deal. I come to work every day with the intent to help others. I know that in helping others I will generate significant revenue for them and for me. I am fortunate that this is the case. I know from the gratitude expressed by many of my clients that at times I have helped them overcome great challenges, even altered the course of their professional and sometimes personal lives with suggestions I have made and behaviors which I have modeled. I think my work matters a great deal.

Although just for fun, my tennis and golf matter as well. The physical relaxation and recharging which I experience from these activities enhances my physical and emotional health. No doubt I will live longer because of these activities. And the camaraderie with my tennis and golf buddies matters as well. I learn from them and them from me. We will not be on this earth indefinitely, and while we are here, these relationships matter.

Each of us must answer for ourselves what in our lives really matters. I applaud Neale Donald Walsch for pushing us to examine what we think matters when most of the time what we think matters does not matter at all.

It really does not matter what clothes we wear, what car we drive, what zip code we live in, what fabulous vacation spot or restaurant we enjoy. As another one of my friends Jack Canfield states so eloquently in our film, Tapping the Source, “It is not the 10,000 square foot house that matters but the relationships within that house.” In my house the most important relationship I have is with Gayle. We laugh and joke, watch silly shows on TV and sometimes argue about the smallest differences of opinion.  Does any of that matter? Not really, except the fact that we love each other and care what the other thinks and always want to share our highs and lows and in-betweens.

Think about what matters most to you and you will discover what really matters.

Where Have All the Legends Of Our World Gone?

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

Singer, songwriter, activist Pete Seeger died this week.  He was 94.

Where Have All the Flowers Gone, If I Had a Hammer, and Turn, Turn, Turn are just some of the songs he wrote, 2009 Armed Forces Inaugural Committeeand he was both a Grammy winning artist and a Kennedy Center honoree who influenced artists from the Kingston Trio to Peter Paul and Mary, from Joan Baez to Trini Lopez, Judy Collins, the Seekers, and the Byrds.

I met Pete Seeger when I was just a small child. His niece was my nursery school teacher. I actually met him twice and may have only been four years old the first time he came to school and sang for us. He was already famous, but of course at four I did not know that. To me he was just a very nice man who sang some funny songs that made us laugh and smile. I sat on the floor directly in front of him, less than five feet away, as he sat in a simple chair and played his guitar and sang. His singing and playing was mesmerizing. I just remember a sense of joy and not being able to stop smiling.

Seeger captured my full attention and that of the other four and five year olds. I remember how much he smiled while he played and sang and how much he enjoyed being with us. There were only twenty of us in the class and it is hard for me to imagine a major musician today taking time out to come and play music for such a small group of children, much less without the requisite photo op that seems to accompany artists today. There was a generosity of spirit in the man that resonated in his music. (more…)


Friday, January 17th, 2014

I have the pleasure of working with Bill Gladstone, and today I received the following blog copy from him:images

We know that marriages are supposed to be commitments that are not just for the good times. We know that the postal service is supposed to continue rain or snow. But we often fail to realize that we are committed to our own personal journeys  in both sickness and in health. It is no fun being sick. I find it impossible to write or have in depth conversations when I am  ill. I just have the flu and it will pass but my level of misery is real.

So all of you out there, if you are well, celebrate the joy of life. If you have the flu like me, hang in there. Tomorrow will be another day and the joy of healthy balanced life will return. I still fail to comprehend why our biological systems are so frail. Perhaps in the future we will find a way so that no one ever needs to be sick.

Of course, I immediately wrote back that he should get Tamiflu, stay in bed, drink fluids, and that if he wanted, I would bring him chicken soup – all the requisite advice and offers we give to friends who fall prey to the flu.  What we don’t do often enough is to admonish our friends and loved ones, as well as ourselves, to avoid taking being healthy for granted; to stay at least as aware of our health as we are of celebrity gossip and other nonsense.

A few months ago, Labor Day to be exact, I returned from a visit to upstate NY coughing and sneezing – mostly coughing.  Writing it off to exposure to unfamiliar flora and fauna, I told myself I was just experiencing NY allergies.  Weeks went by, the cough grew worse, in fact debilitating, and I couldn’t seem to stay awake.  Finally, in late October I was diagnosed with pneumonia.

A week off, and I came back to work, determined to catch up, putting in a seventy hour week.  And I was actually surprised when at the end of that week my fever spiked yet again and my cough returned.  Hadn’t I been on antibiotics and taken them religiously.

So, what’s the point of all this?

We have developed a quick-fix, give-me-a-pill-for-it mentality, and with that we no longer allow our bodies the necessary time to heal.  When I was a child, the doctor still came to your house.  If you were sick, he gave you cough medicine, aspirin, and sometimes an antibiotic. But what the doctor would really insist on was rest and fluids – for at least several days – emphasizing that the body needs time to heal itself.

These days, when we or our kids are sick we take our antibiotics and tell ourselves that twenty-four hours later we can and should get back to school or work.  Instead of allowing for the natural healing process to ensue, we depend on pills.  And that has expanded to depending on pills to enhance our moods, immediately cure our headaches, kick-start weight loss, and to tend to a myriad of other ailments we could otherwise attend to more naturally.

Modern medicine has its place.  It works wonders. But when push comes to shove, it is the natural ability of the body to heal itself that we must honor.

So today I am reiterating to Bill the advice he gave me in October and November. Get lots of rest.  Hydrate.  Don’t push yourself back to work too soon.  Give yourself time to truly heal.  And for those of you out there, keep this in mind the next time the flu or a cold hits you, too.  I know I will.




Friday, January 3rd, 2014

I met with a new client this week, Susie Anthony. Susie is an amazing woman. She was highly successful in her early1154746963_e0eb5e94a6_o thirties, her success culminating with her working for the fifth wealthiest man in the world, a Japanese businessman who was also a Samurai. Working with him, Susie learned a great deal about business, the super wealthy and the ancient wisdom of Japan.  But what she primarily learned was that wealth and power, as attractive as they were, were not ultimately satisfying her soul or her sense of purpose. After a few years Susie  became  addicted not just to the glamour and wealth and power, but also to cocaine.

Susie’s first book, Map to God, explores her journey and explains what she calls “the code”. She approached me with the idea of writing The Super Hero Code which would include stories from fifty or more of the famous business people, actors and visionaries with whom she has worked in the last two decades, sharing their stories as examples of how each individual is, in essence, a hero with their own code which they have followed to reach success in their chosen field and in their life. (more…)

The Culture of Entitlement

Friday, December 27th, 2013

So soon after Christmas I am hesitant to play the Grinch, but I have become increasingly disappointed by the growing sense of entitlement that our culture has created. It seems everyone thinks they should be permitted to have whatever they want whenever they want no matter what they actually contribute to society.  This is not the way our founding fathers ever envisioned what it means to be an American.

We can go back to the original Homestead Act for the first entitlements that were granted. Titles to land were granted to thousands of Americans willing to work the land. Back in those days working the land did not mean that you had tractors and trailers. You worked the land with your hands and had tools, with some mules if you were lucky, and you built your own home, your own fences and barn and everything else you might need to turn uncultivated land to crops or cattle-raising property. Basically your land grant entitled you to the opportunity to work sixteen hour days and create a legacy for your children and grandchildren.

Today the level of entitlement is out of control. I am not just talking about federal programs to help the poor.  A minimum level of food, housing, education, health care and freedom to create is a necessary entitlement for all members of society. What is concerning me is the level of entitlement our public servants feel they deserve.  Just a few days ago another case was discussed in our local San Diego newspaper of a former police officer who was requesting that her $200,000 plus annual retirement payment be considered in part disability payment and thus not subject to normal taxation.  She requested this because of disabilities she had developed while serving on the police force for thirty-plus years. In this case the police officer happens to be a woman. Because of the privacy act she does not want to have her specific disability revealed. (more…)


Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

Gayle and I had the pleasure of taking a walk with Uwe Albrecht’s daughters Shanti and Gaia. As we headed out the girlsdoor towards the beach I asked Shanti, “Have you ever had pizza?”

“Yes, when I was small.” was her answer.

Shanti is a pretty little red-headed girl who cannot be more than four feet tall, so it was amusing to me that she started her response with “When I was small.”  It would hard to be much smaller than Shanti and be walking to the beach on your own. Shanti’s eight year old sister, Gaia, is almost a foot taller so Shanti did, in that moment, seem small to me.  But clearly Shanti does not feel she is small.

“So how old are you Shanti?” I asked.

“I’m five and one-half.” She responded matter-of-factly as if we all knew that every half year deserved to be counted when showing we are not small.

The reality is that time is relative. Shanti is definitely not as small as she must have been when she first tasted pizza, but certainly to any adult she seems small indeed.

As we walked along the beach with Gayle, Shanti and Gaia picking up seashells every three to four feet and so I ended up a hundred yards or so ahead. As I looked back at this scene of natural beauty, innocence and joy I was overcome with a sense of nostalgia not just for myself but for all of humanity. We are all small children racing towards the inevitable growth of our souls. We are here just for a minute, and then we are gone. All of human creation will eventually cease to exist. Whether that takes a billion years or just a  normal human lifespan hardly matters. Impermanence is the true nature of our human existence.

And yet while we are here everything matters. Shanti is not five, she is five and one half. And she is no longer small.


Mandela and Malala

Monday, December 9th, 2013

Nelson Mandela died last Thursday.  By any standards Mandela was a great human being whose life symbolizes the true Nelson_Mandela-2008_(edit)meaning of success.

Nelson Mandela was not a perfect human being. He was married three times and divorced twice. I am sure that in his youth he may have had to take actions which incorporated qualities of anger and frustration, perhaps even violence. In many ways the life of Mandela is a case study of how a strong leader needs to embrace both masculine and feminine qualities. Without the fierce strength and perhaps even aggression of his youth, Mandela would not have been in a position to show the power of forgiveness in solidifying lasting change. As Nelson Mandela learned the true nature of balance in his personal and political life, he was able to achieve lasting results which were truly extraordinary.

More than any other statesman, Nelson Mandela represented unity and overcoming separatism. Those who knew Mandela personally felt he exuded the quality of love. Certainly the photographs from his later life show a man who was able to smile and laugh and enjoy the quiet moments of life. That he was fearless in confronting those who abused and mistreated him and his people, and that he was able to genuinely forgive those  who sometimes hated him and his purpose, made him a unique and admirable leader and human being.

I see many of these same qualities of balancing male and female energy in Malala. Malala was born when Mandela was already 79 years old.  Many years will have to pass before we are able to determine how significant a role Malala will have on the world stage, but whatever her role the lesson we can learn is that fearlessness for one’s personal safety, dedication to a larger purpose based on simple justice, human decency, and the willingness to remain true to one’s roots and family are qualities both of these larger than life personalities share.

Nelson Mandela was the son of a tribal chief. Malala is the daughter of a school teacher. In neither case were these families positioned to create great world leaders. That is exactly the point. No matter who you are, no matter who your parents, grandparents or relatives may be, you are potentially a great world leader. What impact you have on the world may never be formally recognized in the way that Nelson Mandela and Malala have been recognized, but the impact of your life may be just as great.

Everyone matters, everyone can contribute. We can create a just and peaceful world with opportunity for all. The life of Nelson Mandela confirms this truth. We salute a great soul whose journey no doubt continues at this time to contribute to the intended joy of all creation.

Healing and Giving

Monday, December 2nd, 2013

Surrounded by family and friends, and with some time for reflection on all we have to be grateful for, Thanksgiving imagesweekend was a time for healing and giving.

There is a direct link between healing and giving thanks. In studying Soul Healing Miracles by Dr. and Master Sha, we learn that the first step towards any healing is giving thanks to the creator and all beings who share our higher soul purpose. During Thanksgiving we are able to stop our normal flow of activities and focus on resting or undertaking leisure activities that can nurture what ails us or requires attention. We do not need to limit this attention to physical issues only. Often the holidays can be a time to heal emotional wounds and, as I am learning not just from Dr. and Master Sha but also from my other wonderful healing client, Uwe Albrecht, M.D., emotional issues are often at the heart of physical maladies. (more…)

Factory in White

Friday, November 22nd, 2013

In my previous blog I wrote about the family of Dr. Claret and his famous white parties in Cadaques.  It is an honor that myfactory foto daughter is marrying into such a wonderful family. Not only was Dr. Claret one of  the most esteemed  child surgeons, professors, and medical experts in the world, he was a great humanitarian who offered his services for free to clinics in Sierra Leone and elsewhere in Africa both during and after he had retired from teaching and medicine. Perhaps just as importantly, Dr. Claret was a man who knew how to enjoy life and who focused on his five daughters and thirteen grandchildren as his primary source of happiness and joy. Even above his children, grandchildren and work (he considered the thousands of children whose lives he saved or improved his extended family), Dr. Claret noted in his autobiography that the greatest joy and inspiration in his life was his wife Toña. Dr. Claret met Toña in 1952. She was a nurse and he was just completing his internship. They worked and socialized together for four years and then married in 1956. They built his medical practice together and raised five children and lived an extraordinary life. But the most extraordinary aspect of this life, according to Dr. Claret, was his sixty-year relationship with his beloved Toña.

It is not surprising to me that a Catalan of such world renown and accomplishments would place his relationship with his wife above all other joys, Catalans are known for their romanticism, loyalty and commitment to family.

But throughout the rest of Spain, Catalans are known above all for their work ethic. Catalonia is by far the richest province in Spain. In part this may be due to natural resources.  But the biggest factor is the work ethic of the Catalans. Dr. Isidro Claret was no exception. (more…)