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Tag Archives: Smart Living
Every New Year most people talk of resolutions. Unfortunately, most of the talk is about how resolutions don’t work and end up causing more frustration and discouragement than any type of help. The thing is, I’m fairly certain that unless we focus on what we do want and what’s important to us, we likely end up with a year that looks similar to the one before, or worse, one that is significantly less fulfilling. In fact, without such clarity we’re like a person starting out on a journey with no purpose or destination in mind, or an airplane taking off without navigation. So rather than eliminate resolutions altogether, I came up with a new W.A.I (Welcome-Accept-Intentions) of looking at hopes and dreams for the coming year so that we may be better able to enjoy the journey for the next 365 days. Continue reading
Last weekend Thom and I snuck away to the movies. We haven’t gone much these days because most don’t seem to deliver a story worth watching. Fortunately The Life of Pi had just been released. Not only is the movie a stunning visual treat, the story is engaging and thought-provoking. If you haven’t seen it, I strongly encourage you to take the time. And as fantastical as the story may seem, you may find as I did, that the movie is a good allegory for all of us. In fact, many of the choices made by Pi are choices most of us are asked to make as we journey through our lives. Continue reading
Thom and I just returned from a vacation. Spanning 12 days, we attended a wedding, visited with family, stayed in six different hotels, drove over 1,600 miles, hiked in three national parks, and explored parts of five different states in the Southwestern United States. To accomplish this our trip was an orchestration of coordination and planning—as well as an ongoing intention of the Taoist principal of wu wei. While most people lean one way or another when taking a vacation, I believe that the best of them include a delicate dance between the two. Much like the Tao symbol of yin and yang, wu wei and planning blend the two aspects of action into a harmonious whole. In fact, including wu wei in your travel plans just might be the best way to travel on vacation-–or through life itself. Continue reading
Ever heard of the parable of the hedgehog and the fox? These terms gained notice after a philosopher named Isaiah Berlin used them in a popular essay back in the mid-1900s. Berlin used the parable to analyze the worldviews and history of Tolstoy in his classic manuscript, War & Peace. And while I haven’t read War & Peace in many years, or the essay by Berlin, I did read a more recent book entitled, Good To Great by Jim Collins. Collins uses the allegory as a way to define how to be a leader and run a successful business. Even more recently, I came across the two terms in the book Thinking Fast & Slow by Daniel Kahneman. Kahneman uses them to define differing ways to think and predict coming events. But what exactly is a hedgehog, and how does it differ from the fox? Even more importantly, what does it have to do with your life and can it help you live SMART 365? Continue reading
Happy SMART Day Everyone!
Until recently, very few of us purchased a home or rented a house based upon its “walkability score.” But that might be changing. With increased emphasis on the benefits of living in a home where you can walk to community services like libraries, schools and shopping—plus increasing legislation which promotes sustainable regional growth strategies for both housing and transportation—attitudes may be shifting. In fact, as more people attempt to embrace a more SMART and eco-friendly lifestyle, walkability is proving to be one of the best “steps” on the way to going green.
Happy SMART Day Everyone!
This year, for the first time ever, I planted a garden. At the beginning it was fun, rewarding and easy. I began harvesting lettuce within two weeks and peppers barely 30 days later. Every day was a miracle as I watched green tomatoes forming on my wandering vines. Then, just as I anticipated ripe tomatoes, I noticed something awful. Huge juicy caterpillars were munching my vines and my baby tomatoes. Not only were they devastating my plants, their overwhelming presence shattered my idyllic garden image. Almost overnight, my garden became both a challenging endeavor and a reality check. Much as I’d like to believe that disappointment or challenges don’t happen to all of us on a regular basis—the truth is they do. And because it is SMART to stay focused on solutions rather than the problem, here are 8 suggestions anyone of us can use to overcome the hornworms (or any other challenge!) you face in your life. Continue reading