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Knowing others is intelligence;

Knowing yourself is true wisdom;

Mastering others is strength;

Mastering yourself is true power.”

Lao Tzu

You may be many years out of school, deeply involved in your work or with your family, and like most of us, you may have learned many of life’s lessons the hard way. But lessons never stop and learning never ends.

Enlightened people always ask themselves, “What’s next? Where is my next step of growth?” None of us is “finished”. Life constantly serves us opportunities to evolve as human beings and as we do, so does our experience of life. With growth comes increased joy, fulfillment and inner peace. The choice to grow is yours . . .


10 Things Never Learned in School

Karani Phaustin

1. School never taught me how to love

The teachers insisted on the importance of me understanding how to balance equations and prepare gasses in chemistry, but they never taught me how to know if I had the right chemistry with someone.

2. How to handle money

Although I was taught math, it was predominantly calculus and algebra – which I never use. I wish they taught me how to budget my finances instead.

3. Embrace my uniqueness

School never taught me the importance of celebrating my uniqueness. They made me think it was better to fit in than to stand out. Now it has come to my realization that anyone who conquers the world first breaks out the preset mold.

4. The importance of creating an impact

It was ingrained in me that I should get good grades and a good job thereafter and slowly sail into the sunset. They never taught me making a worthwhile contribution on this earth that will outlive me is more important than being tied to a monthly salary.


“A lot of people die at 20 and they are buried at 90.”

Robin Sharma

5. Expressing Gratitude

While I was taught to say thank you, I was never taught how to be constantly grateful for all the blessings in my life. My good health, my sound mind, my loving family – I grew to take all this for granted only to realize later they were blessings.

6. Grades can’t measure my potential

School made me sit through exams and fit me to a certain position depending on my performance. They made me believe those who performed better than I were set out for success throughout their lives. It is not true.


“If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life thinking it is stupid.”

Albert Einstein

7. How to follow my intuition

Following my intuition was never taught in school and I never knew anything about listening to my heart. I was taught to react to situations instead of listening for guidance from my heart, which knows right from wrong.


“Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow know what you truly want to become.”

Steve Jobs

8. Silencing self-doubt

Lessons were taught inside and outside the classroom and lecture hall. Training my brain was never one of the lessons. I thought negative thoughts were normal and I wish they taught me how to silence them and wire my brain positively.

9. Practicing powerful habits

School never insisted on constantly practicing habits like setting goals, having a vision, meditating, conscious thinking, how to deal effectively with people and most important, how to release the victim, stop the complaining and excuses and take 100% accountability for all my actions, reactions and inactions – i.e. my results.

10. The importance of happiness

Lastly, I wish school had taught me about the importance of happiness because my brain’s productivity is directly correlated to my level of happiness. Living in a world that is mostly negative, school never stressed the importance of choosing to be happy.

Thank you to Luminita Saviuc
Author of  15 Things You Should Give Up To Be Happy

The good news is that it’s never too late!

To continue on your road of transformation, contact me for the next step . . . martha@marthaborst.com


The people who win in life are not those who never fail. They are the ones who never quit.”

 

Don’t Quit

When things go wrong as they sometimes will,

When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill,

When the funds are low and the debts are high,

And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,

When care is pressing you down a bit –

Rest if you must, but don’t you quit.

Life is strange with its twists and turns

As every one of us sometimes learns,

And many a failure comes about

When he might have won had he stuck it out;

Don’t give up though the pace seems slow –

You may succeed with another blow.

Success is failure turned inside out –

The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,

And you never can tell how close you are,

It may be near when it seems so far;

So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit…

It’s when things seem worse when you must never quit.

Author Unknown


“For all the sad words of tongue and pen,
The saddest are those: ‘It might have been.’”

John Greenleaf Whittier


“The quality of life is more important than life itself.”

Alexis Carrel

 

Live A Life That Matters

Ready or not, someday it will all come to an end.
There will be no more sunrises, no minutes, hours or days.

All the things you collected, whether treasured or forgotten, will pass to someone else.

Your wealth, fame and temporal power will shrivel to irrelevance.
It will not matter what you owned or what you were owed.

Your grudges, resentments, frustrations, and jealousies will finally disappear.
So, too, your hopes, ambitions, plans, and to-do lists will expire.

The wins and losses that once seemed so important will fade away. In the end, it won’t matter where you came from, or on what side of the tracks you lived.

It won’t matter whether you were beautiful or brilliant.

Even your gender and skin color will be irrelevant.

So what will matter? How will the value of your days be measured?

What will matter is not what you bought, but what you built; not what you got, but what you gave.

 What will matter is not your success, but your significance.

What will matter is not what you learned, but what you taught.

What will matter is every act of integrity, compassion, courage or sacrifice that enriched, empowered or encouraged others to emulate your example.

What will matter is not your competence, but your character.

What will matter is not how many people you knew, but how many will feel a lasting loss when you’re gone.

What will matter is not your memories, but the memories that live in those who love you.

What will matter is how long you will be remembered, by whom and for what.

Living a life that matters doesn’t happen by accident.

 It’s not a matter of circumstance, but of choice.
Vow to live a life that matters.

Author Unknown


“We shall advance when we have learned humility; when we have learned to seek truth, to reveal it and publish it; when we care more for that than for the privilege of arguing about ideas in a fog of uncertainty.”

Walter Lippmann, c.1917


The Truth Will Set You Free

 There is a truth. There is a reality. Oftentimes, we think OUR truth is THE truth and OUR reality is THE reality, but it is only OUR perception of what we THINK is the truth. So who is right? Who is wrong? Who has the RIGHT way of governing? Whose side has the RIGHT answers? Who has the RIGHT God?

Look at the results. Don’t you see how impossible all of this is?

“There is no god higher than truth.”

Mahatma Gandhi

I think that all any of us want is a world that “works”, but works for whom? How and where do we find the answer?

Religious people look to their religious teachings – but there are many religions. The common core of most major religions is very much the same: “God (Allah/Buddha, etc.) is love”, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. But everyone fights and even kills, to claim their religion as the RIGHT religion and they deviate from the basic core teachings with their own perceptions of what these pure messages mean.

Governments form political parties that are diametrically opposed to one another and the value each can bring to the table is completely lost when focus is placed on their differences. Self-righteous positions are formed and the fight is on.

Look at the results. Don’t you see there is no way out of this?

This “right/wrong” thinking spreads throughout society, each person trying to be more powerful, more “right”. Sides are formed. We gather armies (people who think like we do) and ammunition (so-called “facts”) and soon we are at war and everyone claims, “God is on OUR side.”

That doesn’t work for me. Look around you. How’s it working for you?

Our country and this world is ignoring TRUTH. We are seeing masses of people being manipulated by what is known as “Perception Management”. We listen to, subscribe to and pass on Fake News and totally false conspiracies.

We only listen to and read news sources that agree with our own perceptions. We eat up “reality shows” on TV that are manipulated or scripted to provide entertainment (usually in the form of conflict). We listen to pundits and vote for politicians who

continuously contort the truth – (and down deep, we all know we’re doing this!) We surround ourselves with people who think like we do and disregard the rest as “stupid, illiterate, fools” or “elitist, entitled snobs”.

We have come to EXPECT the truth to be distorted and soon that becomes “normal”. If a lie is repeated enough times, we begin to believe it. We check in with Twitter, YouTube and other social media, see 10 million hits and think, “It MUST be true!”

That distortion actually becomes our new Truth and we soon find ourselves slipping into an altered reality and believing it!

We must get our heads out of the sand! We must not allow ourselves to be lulled into a lazy unconsciousness by those who are only out for their own win. We must be vigilant, stay alert and retain a connection with results, reality and facts and we must begin by being truthful with OURSELVES. We must admit to our own willingness to ignore the truth we know is right in front of us.

Ignoring factual awareness in order to be right ultimately never works because results, reality and truth don’t care about OUR perceptions/OUR truth. Reality and truth don’t have emotional reactions, feelings, beliefs or positions. Nor do they take sides. All they do is give us a RESULT and results don’t lie. Results tell us everything about how things are “working”.

Our society as it currently exists, doesn’t work for me. How’s it working for you?

What would it be like to have a world/society/community that works for everyone, a world where our commitment would be to collaborate and cooperate with one another, to seek mutual fulfillment of the basic wants and needs of everyone?

Why should one of us win at the expense of another? Which one of us is more important? Are you more valuable than I? Am I more valuable than you? I think not. At the core, are we not all equal?

What kind of society could we create IF:

  • We all simply committed to stand for the TRUTH.
  • We refused to listen to or believe the biased rhetoric.
  • We stood up to the surrogates’ twisted spin on anything and everything and voiced our disapproval to news agencies that allow this to happen.
  • We committed to listen ONLY to the facts: what was ACTUALLY said, what was ACTUALLY done, what science can actually PROVE.
  • We demanded of ourselves and our leaders to ONLY produce results that work for everyone.

Maybe, just maybe things could be different. Because I’m clear about one thing, the way our society is headed, a way that sweepingly disregards facts and entire sections of humanity as well as the well-being and health of our planet, doesn’t work for me and TRUTHFULLY . . . .

How’s it working for you?

“Generosity is the most natural outward expression of an inner attitude of compassion”

 

Teaching our children to fully understand the implications of giving, as well as the value of giving, is perhaps one of the most important things we can ever do as parents. The following article is particularly good and I ask that you take a few minutes to read it . . .


Let Your Children in on the Conversation of Charitable Giving  

Ron Lieber

Money is one of the most powerful tools we have to teach children the values and virtues we want them to adopt. Given how many of our own values are wrapped up in charitable giving, it makes sense to bring the kids in on some of the decision making.

This doesn’t need to be a conversation about how much money you make and what percentage of it you should give away. Younger children don’t have enough math skills and experience to grapple with five- and six-figure numbers anyway. But a family’s choices about how it divides its charitable dollars reflect its values.

So what’s the best way for parents to help their children see their values in action in this context? And how best to get them to question parental priorities and express strong feelings of their own?

Here’s what my family did as an experiment this holiday season: We put 100 dried beans on the dining room table, with each one representing 1 percent of our annual giving. Then we divided them up into piles to represent the causes and institutions we had supported in 2012.

Next, we looked through a pile of solicitations that had arrived in the mail, from organizations we had supported in the past and ones that hoped to persuade us to give before the end of the year. We also came to the table with new ideas, based on issues that were newly important to us.

Here’s what we learned by making this a family conversation about how to re-divide the beans for 2013:


WANTS AND NEEDS

One surprise was that our 8-year-old daughter applied the “Want-Need” test to this particular exercise. Normally, this comes up when we talk about consumer purchases more broadly and whether various objects of desire are things we actually need or simply want. The necessity of cable television is one we’ve been debating recently.

The test came up while discussing a pitch from the Public Art Fund, which helps place art in public spaces around New York City. Set against real human need, locally and globally, our daughter wondered whether this was something we really needed to support or whether we merely wanted to. It didn’t make the cut, though we agreed we can help improve our local park by participating in cleanup days more often.


TRANSPARENCY

Our family devotes a decent chunk of our giving budget to the educational institutions that gave me scholarships a couple of decades ago. We also try to give generously to the places that have helped shape our daughter, so they can help as many children as possible afford their tuition or programs.

Many overnight camps lack much racial or socioeconomic diversity, since they have no endowments or much of a donor base. Our daughter helped persuade us to support a scholarship fund at her camp. We also decided to give to an organization that helps homeless children locally, moved as we were by the New York Times series  about a young girl living in a shelter with her family.

We received a pitch from a dance company where our daughter took some lessons a while back. But the solicitation said nothing about its efforts to help children afford its classes, so we made a collective decision to pass on that one.


MARKETING

We’re well aware that by looking at the solicitations at all, we’re encouraging nonprofit institutions to send ever more mail each year. This clogs mailboxes, kills trees and wastes piles of the very money families like us donate.

This was an experiment, though, so we wanted to see what kind of impact the pitches would have on a child. It probably won’t come as much surprise to learn the clever folks at Heifer International were the only ones who managed to sway our daughter via a direct-mail piece. Like many children, she was moved by its catalog of smiling people around the world who are able to make money and feed their families with the help of a water buffalo or sheep the organization provides

One wrinkle here was she didn’t want anyone eating these animals, because she’s a vegetarian. Several pages into the catalog, however, she found a beehive she wanted to donate.

My guess is any family that tries this would hear their children echo at least some of the values they hold dear. If not, the conversation offers an opportunity to find out which issues and institutions matter most to every family member and why.

Our plan is to make the dining-table allocation exercise an annual tradition, albeit without most of the mailers. Any other tweaks to the bean exercise that you would suggest?

 

Ron Lieber writes the “Your Money column” for The New York Times. He is the author of “The Opposite of Spoiled,” about parenting, money, values and raising the kinds of children all parents want to push out into the world, no matter how much money they have (HarperCollins, February 2015). He hosts regular conversations about these topics on his Facebook page and welcomes comments here or privately, via his Web site.

“If I Were to Remain Silent, I’d be Guilty of Complicity.”

Albert Einstein

Here’s What You Can Do

If we don’t take committed action, Trump and the right wing extremists will roll back a century of progress, deny the fundamental rights guaranteed to all by our Constitution, and transfer every last ounce of wealth and power to the people and corporations that already control most of it (at the expense of everyone else).

The Cabinet members, Bannon and other advisors hand-picked by Trump (not for their qualifications, but simply because they supported HIM), are a group of billionaires, bankers, oil magnates and Wall Street insiders. They ARE the swamp!

Now, here’s what you can do:

  • Keep the pressure on. Show up and speak up. IT WORKS! Our constant and consistent participation is the key.
  • Think short term and actively respond to current attacks on our freedoms and civil liberties
  • Think long term and proactively plan for the next elections in 2017, 2018 and especially 2020. This is not a sprint. It is a marathon.
  • Participate in local politics. Form or join a local group to take action in your town. Go to City Council Meetings. Demand Town Hall Meetings with Congress members when they are in town. Be ready to act nationally when needed.

Never for one second, forget America is YOUR country and that the President and the members of Congress WORK FOR YOU!!!

Below is a check list of 10 specific steps you can take to do your part. You are being called to action.

 Here’s what YOU can do: 

  • Spend just 10 minutes each day doing one of the following. I am sure you can agree that’s not asking too much. (Save or print the following information for future reference):

 

GET STARTED

  • Get yourself prepared with good information. Up-to-date names and contact information of all the men and women in Congress is available at: http://capwiz.com/pfaw/directory/congdir.tt . This site also provides all contact information for all major news and network organizations. SAVE THIS LINK for all future communication.
  • Write/email/call members of congress – call them and tell them what concerns you and how you want them to vote.

Contact your own representatives:

 Mitch McConnell (R-KY) – Senate Majority Leader:
(202) 224-2541
Chuck Schumer (D-NY) – Senate Minority Leader:

(202) 224-6542
Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House (R-WI)
:
(202) 225-3031
Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) – House Majority Leader:

(202) 225-2915
Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) – House Minority Leader:  
(202) 225-4965

The following are the most centrist republican congress members and will be good people to contact:
Senator Bob Corker – TN: (202) 224-3344

Senator Lisa Murkowski – AK: (202) 224-6665

Senator Rob Portman – OH: (202) 224-3353

Senator Susan Collins – ME: (202) 224-2523

Senator Bill Cassidy – LA: (202) 224-5824

  • Write/email/call:

Reince Priebus – Chair of the Republican National Committee: https://www.gop.com/contact-us/

Tom Perez – Chair of the Democratic National Committee: 202-863-8000

http://my.democrats.org/page/s/contact-the-democrats

  • Write/email/call the White House – post card campaign. Send one/day: Share your opinions with him daily:

Mail your messages to:

President (for now) Donald J. Trump

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW

Washington D.C. 20500

Email messages to: president@whitehouse.gov. Enter the Subject information. Decide upon a good, simple subject to name your email. Consider using “Regarding [topic]” as a format.

Call: Comments: 202-456-1111 OR Switchboard: 202-456-1414


Twitter:
Compose your message in 140 characters or less and be sure to include the Twitter handles @WhiteHouse, @realDonaldTrump and/or @POTUS.

  NOTE: Say what you want to say in a professional manner and do not include any overt or covert threats. The United States Secret Service takes these threats very seriously, and will investigate each one to ensure that the President of the United States is protected.

If your letter is judged to be a threat, odds are very good you will end up being investigated. Threatening the President of the United States is a Class E Felony, which carries a punishment that includes prison time (among other things), so weigh your words with care. [1]

  • Make 5 calls/day:  https://5calls.org – Spend 5 minutes, make 5 calls. This site provides phone numbers and scripts, so calling is quick and easy, and uses your location to find your local representatives so your calls have more impact. Get their weekly newsletter.


KEEP GOING . . . ONGOING SUPPORT

  •  Concentrate on one or two pet causes you will stand for and support with your time, donations and petitions. Don’t spread yourself too thin:


Women’s Rights

Planned Parenthood  www.plannedparenthood.org 

NARAL http://prochoiceamerica.org  
Protect the Environment

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Making-a-difference/2013/0628/10-organizations-that-protect-the-environment/Conservation-Fund  
Immigration

http://politico.com/news/immigration 
Civil rights/human rights

http://civilrights.org

Amnesty International – is a global movement of more than 7 million people in over 150 countries and territories who campaign to end abuses of human rights: https://www.amnesty.org/en/

Gun Control  http://everytown.org 

Education http://networkforpu   bliceducation.org    

Affordable Care Act  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patient_Protection_and_Affordable_Care_Act 
The Economy/Wall Street/Big Business, etc. Do some research on your own.

THEN:

Contact the Trump Cabinet Member directly related to your favorite cause. Here they are:

Trump Cabinet Tracker: Lists all current Cabinet Members and other Trump advisors and background on each.  https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/02/trump-cabinet-tracker/510527/ 

  • Fact check. One of the most important things we can do is stand for the TRUTH. Don’t send info you haven’t fact-checked, don’t spread conspiracies (on all sides). Correct anything or anyone you know to be spreading false information. Trump HATES the truth!

  PolitiFact: www.politifact.com   PolitiFact is  fact-checking website that rates the accuracy of claims by elected officials and others on its Truth-O-Meter.

Snopes: www.snopes.com The definitive Internet reference source for urban legends, folklore, myths, rumors, and misinformation.


Pros and Cons of Fact-checking sites:
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2016/12/1/1606289/-Fact-Checking-Websites-Pros-and-Cons 

 

  • Write to/email/call News Media and support good honest reporting and condemn anything that smacks of conspiracy or “alternative facts”. Tell them you want them to speak Truth to Power and to keep asking the questions until politicians actually answer them! Some relatively reliable news sources are:

 NBC, CBS, ABC, PBS, BBC, KQED, CNN, NPR, MSNBC (accurate, but tends to lean left),NYT, Wash Post, Chicago Tribune, LA Times, WSJ, The Atlantic and Politico.

The Daily Beast, The Huffington Post, Mother Jones and The New Yorker are some I really like.

In my opinion, FOX News is a puppet of the Trump administration, manipulates the truth and spreads conspiracies.

Call FOX News and complain about their severe bias:(888) 369-4762

         

  • Join Protest Marches – Attend Town Hall Meetings – show up in numbers with signs and feel free to speak up. Your voice matters:

http://townhallproject.comSign up to stay up to date on town halls in your area (nationwide) and GO TO THEM!!

  • BOYCOTT TRUMP RETAILERS who sell/market his products. Google: Boycott Trump for many sites that list retailers/products to avoid.
  • Stay informed. Some of my favorite balanced thinkers among many are:

Television News Sources:

  • GPS – The Global Public Square with Fareed Zakaria (CNN – Sunday am) He’s my favorite!!
  • Charlie Rose (Weekdays pm)
  • This Week with George Stephanopolous (CBS – Sunday am)
  • Meet the Press with Chuck Todd (NBC – Sunday am)
  • The Messy Truth – Van Jones (CNN)
  • 360 with Anderson Cooper (CNN – Weeknights)
  • Heather McGhee (pundit)
  • Joy Ann Reid (MSNBC am)
  • Rachel Maddow and Keith Olbermann (MSNBC – Weeknights)

 TV – Poignant political humor that wakes you up!

  • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (Sunday pm)
  • The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (Week nights)
  • The Bill Marr Show (Friday nights)

 

Internet News Sources

http://whatthefuckjusthappenedtoday.com is a terrific newsletter and blog that chronicles the daily shock and awe of the Trump administration. It’s produced every morning by hand, updated throughout the day, with a newsletter sent out every afternoon.

http://popularresistance.org Here you will find links, tools and other resources to help you connect with groups and organizations in the increasingly growing popular resistance movement. They also provide a daily stream of relevant news articles from around the web, and perhaps the most comprehensive national events calendar anywhere online.

http://countable.us: Get clear, concise summaries of bills going through Congress, see what others think, then take action. Telling your reps how you feel is easier than ever with email and now video messages. Make your democracy more responsive!

ACLU – American Civil Liberties Unionhttp://aclu.org. For almost 100 years, the ACLU has worked to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States.

PLEASE!

Won’t you set aside 5-10 minutes of every day (write it in your calendar right now) and be the kind of active citizen our country deserves and desperately needs?

Holding back and waiting for someone else to do it gave us Trump. You and I are needed now more than ever before and we MUST do something every day.

Your vote counts! Your actions count and never forget, the President and Congress work for YOU and ME, not the other way around!!

Thank you for your patriotism, courage and strength.

 

“I am not a one in a million kind of girl. I am a once in a lifetime kind of woman.”

Pravinee Hurbungs

 

 

For the Love of the World

For the love of a tree…
She went out on a limb.
For the love of the sea…
She rocked the boat.
For the love of the earth…
She dug deeper.

For the love of community…
She mended fences.
For the love of the stars…
She let her light shine.
For the love of spirit…
She nurtured her soul.

For the love of a good time…
She sowed seeds of happiness.
For the love of the Goddess…
She drew down the moon.
For the love of nature…
She made compost.
For the love of a good meal…
She gave thanks.

For the love of family…
She reconciled differences.
For the love of creativity…
She entertained new possibilities.
For the love of her enemies…
She suspended judgment.

For the love of herself…
She acknowledged her worth.
And the world was richer for her.

~ Charlotte Tall Mountain

 

Thank you to my good friend,
Sherry Edensmith for sharing this poem with us