If at first …

As kids we’re not taught how to deal with success; we’re taught how to deal with failure. If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. If at first you succeed, then what? 

— Charlie Sheen 

Thought for Thursday – Becoming

The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become.



To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and to endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Your Gifts and Moments of Grace

When you’re lucky enough to experience a rare occurrence where your natural gifts and skills lend themselves to a moment of grace, you experience a profound change. It can feel mysterious and awesome all at the same time. The key is to discover and nurture your natural gifts and skills so you create a life fertile for these breathtaking moments of grace.

I’d like to share with you a special quote from writer Anne Lamott:

“I do not at all understand the mystery of grace – only that it meets us where we are but does not leave us where it found us.”

In March, I posted a blog titled “Psychology and Success: The Magic of Your Talent Advantage”. In it I wrote:

“When you use your natural skills consciously and intentionally something interesting happens. Your skills and talents don’t just develop, they blossom and transform in ways that you cannot predict. By leading you into actions, environments, and situations that draw upon and support them, your innate gifts and skills open you to new possibilities that you could not previously imagine. New layers, new depths, and new meanings unfold that will draw you into new, unexpected manifestations and applications. You will not just discover; you will live your unique skills and talents. It’s magic!”

A recent experience encouraged me to consider that rather than “magic,” I should use the word, “grace”: “a moment of unmerited divine assistance given humans.”

Over the Memorial Day weekend, I went to California to attend a family reunion of my wife’s relatives on her mother’s side, and to celebrate my mother-in-law’s 90th birthday. She comes from a-long lived family in which seven of the nine siblings lived to at least 90 years of age (the ages of the three remaining are 105, 95, and 90).

Part of the weekend’s events included gathering to remember one of the recently deceased sisters (who died at age 98), and spread her ashes in a beautiful place along the Big Sur coast. I had previously only met a few of the approximately 50 people who gathered, so after people had spoken their memories and we had re-arranged ourselves to watch the spreading of the ashes, I was not surprised to see a man whom I didn’t recognize walking toward where I was standing alone on the path.

It was a cold, misty, rainy day, as it so often is along the Northern California coast in late spring, and we were a curious bunch ranging from 18 months young to 105 years old, obviously gathered for a purpose.
The ‘stranger’ and I acknowledged each other, and then he revealed he was not a part of the family when he asked me, “What’s this all about?”

I explained it was a family reunion, and that we had gathered to remember a recently deceased member. I pointed out the two sisters of the deceased, but was cautious regarding the spreading of the ashes, since I wasn’t completely sure of the legality of what was happening (I have since found out that is technically illegal, but that it is a common occurrence and officials generally look the other way).

As we continued to talk, it was obvious he was just curious, unconcerned about legalities, and I ended up explaining exactly what was happening. His face lit up with a smile and he told me that his mother’s ashes were spread on the hill right behind us; that this was a beautiful final resting place. He explained how he was seeking to photograph a Swainson’s Thrush, but was unlikely to see one on such a cold and wet day. We stood silently for a few more minutes observing the scene, and then he wished us well and went on his way.

Even though I knew the woman whose life we were remembering, I had not shared any memories with the group. None of mine stood out as particularly significant, especially in relation to those of her sisters, children, nieces and nephews, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. But I had liked her very much and had been feeling a little diminished by not participating.

But the interaction with the ‘stranger’ left me with a warm, happy feeling and a sense of completion and closure.

It wasn’t until later, during a quiet moment reflecting on the morning’s event, that I was struck by the aspect of grace in my chance encounter.

As I mentioned, I had been feeling a little disconnected from the memorial because of my lack of participation, but the arrival of this total stranger presented me an opportunity to use one of my natural gifts – the ability to provide to others contextual understanding of what is occurring, in a way that includes them and makes them feel “a part of”.

Grace is rarely a one-way phenomenon, and I don’t know all of what the stranger received from our encounter, but I do know that in our brief interchange he got to remember his mother fondly, and share with a group of strangers a moment of connection and common experience. The experience remains a powerful one to me.

Discovering your natural gifts, talents, and skills is not just about success in business; it is integral to becoming you in all aspects of your life and sows the seeds for amazing moments of grace.

“If you work on your gifts they will make room for you.” – Jim Rohn

Gary Jordan, Ph.D., has over 27 years of experience in clinical psychology, behavioral assessment, individual development, and coaching. He earned his doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology – Berkeley. He is co-creator of Perceptual Style Theory, a revolutionary psychological assessment system that teaches people how to unleash their deepest potentials for success. He’s a partner at Vega Behavioral Consulting, Ltd., a consulting firm that specializes in helping people discover their true skills and talents. For free information on how to succeed as an entrepreneur or coach, create a thriving business and build your bottom line doing more of what you love, visit http://www.YourTalentAdvantage.com

Everything Happens Between Your Ears Prior To Seeing It Before Your Eyes!

Think about it.

This presentation covers the number 1 motivation killer… and something very few people even realize exists in their minds…



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Success and failure

“Be prepared to ride the cycles and trends of life; success is never permanent and failure is never final.”

—Brian Tracy


“Achievement is largely the product of steadily raising one’s levels of aspiration and expectation.”

Jack Nicklaus

Learn from 12 of Australia’s finest coaches

Tap into the SPORTS WISDOM of 12 of Australia’s finest coaches as they reveal their personal stories and success philosophies. 

Discover valuable lessons from sport and how to fast-track your child’s personal and sporting development for a successful journey through life!

Their secrets can take you to the top of your sports parenting or coaching game!

The Law of Attraction — for the PC!

You’ve heard about manifesting, and the Law of Attraction.

There are plenty of courses that will show you “how” it works.
They explain the basics to you, then let you go out and practice it for yourself.

The results — as you may have found — can be patchy.

But what if there were a program that literally handheld you through the ENTIRE manifestation process? Meaning that there was NO room for error, and ensuring you manifested great results – in record time?

The Dream Manifestation Wizard is a brand new software app that helps to magnify the results you get from the Law of Attraction.

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And it all comes with big one-year, money-back guarantee too — so you can try out the power of the Dream Manifestation Wizard, absolutely risk-free.

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Here’s to seeing your manifest your greatest dreams and desires in 2012 —


You Don’t Have to be Cheap to Save Money at Christmas

Lots of people think the holiday season is the time of year when budgets and limits can go right out the window. Some people may start out with a budget, but then they see that absolute-must-have-can’t-live-without present and their carefully-contrived budget goes right out the window.

If you think you have to spend a ton of money to have a great Christmas, think again. And, just because you set a budget for yourself doesn’t mean you’re “cheap”; it means you’re “smart”.

But how do you spend wisely at Christmas time without looking “cheap”?

Follow these 5 tips:

1. Harness the power of gift cards.

They’re small, they can be purchased right at the last minute, and they let you set the price you want to pay. Have a gadget-lover in the family? Get a Best Buy gift card. Even if $10 or $20 won’t pay for that set of speakers he’s had his eye on, it’ll help defray the cost a bit.

Have a teenage son who’s impossible to shop for? Get him an iTunes gift card. Even $10 will get him about 10 songs he’ll love.

Have a cousin that never seems to pull his head out of a book? Get him a gift card to Barnes and Noble, Amazon, or his local bookstore.

Have a pre-teen daughter who loves to hang out with her friends at the movies? Give her a $10 gift card to your local movie theater. It’ll pay for two matinee tickets. Or, get her a gift card to Blockbuster and throw in a microwaveable bag of popcorn or a box of her favorite candy to munch on.

The best part about gift cards is you can tailor them to anyone’s interests. If it’s Christmas Eve and you’re stuck finding a present for someone, go buy them a gift card. If you want to avoid the mall altogether, most grocery stores have a ton of gift cards to choose from right at the registers!

2. Indulge someone’s sweet tooth.

If you have a coffee lover in the family, Starbucks has products that won’t cost you an arm and a leg. Even if you only have $10 to spend, you can get your coffee-loving loved one a pouch of freshly-ground coffee, a new mug, or a new type of biscotti they’ll be sure to enjoy.

Or, if your recipient is more into ice cream, head to Cold Stone Creamery – where you can get a pint of their favorite flavor. If you look wisely, you might even be able to find a few coupons to enclose with the gift!

3. Focus on accessories.

You might not be able to afford the latest gadgets, but thanks to SkinIt.com you can accessorize gadgets! At SkinIt, you can pick from thousands of “skins” that go on laptops and mobile devices – sort of like a giant sticker. Each “skin” is about $15, and it can give even an old gadget a brand new feel!

4. Help with bigger purchases.

OK, so you might not have the money to pay for your best friend’s calls back to her homeland, but you can give her a prepaid phone card that helps offset some of the charges.
Even if you only spend $10 or $20, your friend can talk to people all over the world – thanks, in part, to you!

5. When in doubt, head to Amazon.

Amazon has great deals on just about everything. Even if you’re stuck on a present for the pickiest person you know, you can rest easy giving them a $10 or $20 gift card to Amazon. If you want to be really unique, you can even have a gift card sent to your friend in a Facebook post!


Tony Mase is a serious student of the works of Wallace D.
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