Need to know

We go on our journey as there is, for sure, a lot that we do not know when we start.  It could be about what we are doing, our surroundings, some equipment, a place…so many things.  And when we encounter something that we do not know enough about it is important to stop, take a moment and find out more about it. That natural curiosity pushing us to want to know more.  And as we learn more and more we can go deeper and deeper in our understanding.  The effort to find out more rewarded by the simple satisfaction of knowing and then there is the sharing what we find out.  Our instincts satisfied, the knowledge gained, and the rest of our journey just that much better for knowing more.

Loving life when I know more

Joe

National Ice Cream Day

There are many reasons to smile while on our journey and we should take advantage of as many as we can. So when we find out that it is, not only, national ice cream month, it is national ice cream day, it puts a smile on our face.  Ice cream has that special appeal, from young to old it just makes us happy when we have a scoop, or two, of ice cream. We can find a flavor that we like and maybe even a local ice cream store at which we can really treat ourselves.  So here’s to taking advantage of this great day and enjoying a moment of indulgence on our journey. We all deserve it!

Loving life when I am eating ice cream

 Joe

The Unsung hero

Our journey can take many forms and as we progress we find that the journey in and of itself is rich and rewarding.  And when we look around we, not coincidently, see other journey’s going on at the same time as ours.  The boys of the Tour de France, for example are riding for three weeks to crown a champion.  Their journey executed every day with eight riders on each team with many of whom will turn their journey into a race where they are sacrificing themselves to keep their leader protected and escorted to the finish line.  The riders put out a lot of energy, in relative obscurity to get it done for their teammate.  It is a metaphor for life when we step back and think about it.  We all have the opportunity to be the supporter for others and when we do this we extract a better outcome for all involved.  So, let’s take a lesson from the domestiques of the Tour, good hard work brings good outcomes, for us and more than anything for others for whom we are supporting.

 Loving life when I am supporting others

Joe

Appreciation

While on our journey we can get busy, focused, engaged in such a way that we might miss how fortunate we are to have such a great life.   And when we do pick up our head or are reminded by someone else how wonderful life is it feels good to be thankful for all that we have.  It is a simple step to take and in so doing our gratitude for having found our way on our journey becomes more and more real and important.  It gets even better when we internalize this feeling and realize that so many of the sources of goodness come from others around us as much as from our own lives.   We travel this journey, not alone, but together and for this we are grateful and appreciative and being appreciative makes it just that much more meaningful. 

Loving life when I appreciate all that I have

Joe

Apollo in Space

Our journey, for all that we think and consider, many never rise to the level of what the Apollo crews took on, in their journey to outer space.  This week marks the 50th anniversary of the launch of Apollo 11 from the Kennedy Space Center. And on Saturday, we’ll celebrate 50 years since Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon. It is just incredible to consider how bold the Apollo program was and how brave the astronauts were. The space race was played out on the global stage and in the end the journey that inspired us and captured the world’s attention leading to the first steps of humans on another world was lead by the Apollo team.  And as we think about our next journey it is good to use the amazing accomplishments of the Apollo astronauts as a living example of how far we can go with our imaginations and all that we can do.  Here’s to being inspired and opening the gateway for more exploration to come.

Loving life when I am inspired to do big

Joe

Make Time

We know that “time” is our currency.  We are granted 168 hours per week and how we use these hours defines what we get done, how we feel, what we learn and so much more.  When we break down the day and what we do we realize there is enough time to do what we want, to make an impact, to serve others, to improve what we do and who we are.  Yet, it seems that this is difficult to get to right.  We feel that we do not have enough time, that we are not doing all that we want to do.  So, we need to step back and think about how to use our time.  It is a rather simple process, one that we are all capable of doing.  We need to separate what we need to do from what we want to do.  First, we block time for what we need to do, we stay committed to the priorities.  We add some time for what we want to do and before we know it we are getting more done that matters and feeling better about it.  Making time is truly under our control and a powerful capability that we have to affect who we are and what we get done.  168 hours……indeed……

 Loving life when I am making time

Joe

A running life

As we move through our journey there is a high likelihood that we might find ourselves running from time to time.  And it is also possible that we will evolve into a runner.  When we do it is most likely will have many days that we find ourselves running the same route or the same distance over and over again.  As wonderful as running is it can just get routine or boring if we do not try to mix it up, to run different distances, to do different kinds of races or runs. And since we know that a good run is good for the heart, mind and legs the question is how we can keep our interest level high for years and years.  There are many techniques that we can leverage.  We can run intervals, we can go out on a trail, run on the track or even go out for a run with a backpack loaded with weight.  All of these approaches not only keep the interest level high they create different metabolic and physical responses and can make us stronger and faster.  Let’s target doing at least one different run a week or every other day and for sure we will find a way to enjoy running again.  Being creative is part of a good journey – enjoy the freedom to do what we want and let’s have fun doing it.

Loving life when I am running

Joe

The green life

We make choices every day along our journey and in each decision, we make an impact on our surroundings, our community and mother earth.  We cannot use being busy or any other reason to get in the way of doing the right thing and that should start with each of us living a green life.    A simple list that we could start with is:

·      Turn down the heat and the A/C.

·      Reuse & recycle the products that we buy.

·      Use less paper.

·      Turn off all electronics before bed. ...

·      Ride greener rides

Next step is to take a green challenge – are we making more “green” decisions and let’s keep working it till we can really tell that we are making an impact. It is worth it for us and all whom share the planet with us.

Loving life when I go green  

Joe

Smokey the Bear

For all of us who have spent time in the forests, we have been careful to take the best care we can of these precious assets.   There are some basics that we all know and sharing them, living to them is critical.  Since 1944, Smokey Bear has taught millions of Americans what our role is in preventing forest fires.  75 years since the inception of Smokey the Bear we have all benefited from the character and what he stands for.  Saving our forests from runaway fires is critical and we all can play a role in making that happen.  We can learn how to best make a campfire to how to burn backyard debris.  We can do it right with just a little bit of focus and effort.  Here’s to Smokey – Happy Birthday indeed! 

Loving life when I learn from the knowledge of others

Joe

Tell our story

We are all working in earnest to stay true to our journey.  We have goals, objectives, we put together plans, we practice until we can do no more and we stay positive and excited about what is possible.  It defines who we are and how we feel about this mission that we are on.  And yet there are times when we think that we are not doing enough, that we are just “average” – others are the “fast” or “strong” ones.  But lest we cede all that we do and all the effort that we commit to our journey it is important to remind ourselves that we are not at all average, that we are committed beyond the norm, that what we do is at the next level.  We are writing a story that is worth telling and a life that is worth living.  All we have to do is to step into it.  Indeed…

Loving life when I am telling my story

Joe

Amber waves of grain

There is so much that goes by in a flash when on our journey that we have to make a conscious effort to notice what is around us.  Sights, sounds, places, people, they can all fade into the background if we are not careful, yet we know that when we stop for a moment to embrace what it is we are doing and where we are, we realize that inspiration is all around.  A jaunt through the plains of Kansas and words only heard in a song are brought to life as we see all around us - those “amber waves of grain” – a sea of amber for sure, as if planted in our honor.  The feeling inspiring, the recognition that this journey is to be embraced, felt, lived and not from our chair but out in the world with amber waves of grain.

Loving life when I am feeling the journey deeply. 

Joe

Practice not what we are good at

Time will tell what we are good at and what we are not.  It is not a question of nature or nurture but rather what it is we spend time doing and practicing.  To get better generally requires that we spend lots of time outside of our comfort zone, working at the things we are bad at and then putting ourselves into the position so that we can ask for criticism from someone better than us. We then take the feedback and work to improve what we know we need to improve. We know intrinsically that if we only practice our strengths, we will never improve our weaknesses. So, let’s make a commitment, write it down, and set out a plan to work on our weaknesses. and watch ourselves get better and better.  What better way to spend our time….

Loving life when I am working on my weaknesses 

Joe

Ask for help

Seems that by the time we get to this point on our journey that we have become quite good at what it is to keep us going on the journey.  And yet, if we are really paying attention and we are sincere about the experience we are having then we know for sure that we do not know everything.  In fact, it might be that learning how to ask for help is the key to getting here and then going further.  Asking for help, then, becomes a skill that we need to hone and use again and again as the mechanism for being better at what we do.  The good thing is that we can start at any time and we can use this skill as much as we like.  It is a good thing indeed.

Loving life when I ask for help

Joe

Take a moment

There is a real balance that we need to strike while on our journey.  It is all too easy to get wrapped up in what we have going on in our lives and miss a key opportunity to make the journey just that much better.  The good news is that we can do this quite easily by spending some time every day focused on the goodness that we see in others.  We know it in every interaction that we have – there is always something good that we can say.  And it is true, that no matter what the message when it is positive and sincere that it is always well received.  We don’t have to know the person, we just have to take a moment and share a positive thought towards them and the effect is delivered.  We all know from our own personal experience that we love getting nice feedback.  So, let’s give it a try and make it part of our daily practice – the impact is great and the effect on all parties worth the price of admission

Loving life when I take a moment to say something nice

Joe

What we do….

There are many choices that we make when on our journey and it is indeed possible that in the context of 7.4 billion people living on the planet that our actions might feel insignificant relative to the scale of what we are all part of.  Yet, with a moment of reflection we realize that what we do, while it starts with just one always has a cascading impact.  The impact on others around us, those who observe us, those who are impressionable and also those who know not of what we do or why we do it.  From there the impact only gets bigger, multiplicative and material.  So, if we do the right thing it gets noticed, others copy us and still others notice and copy them, and the viral impact is birthed.  The path to impact great, what we do matters, and it matters a lot and so let’s think about how we change the trajectory as soon as tomorrow.  We will not heal overnight but we will have changed what is possible and that is good enough for the moment, indeed it is

Loving life when what I do matters

Joe

On the pathway

Each day on our journey we spend time going in and out of consciousness with sleep the pathway there.  Sleep the magic elixir that gets us ready for the next day’s journey is treasured and well appreciated and yet so much of what goes on for us is a learning experience.  We know not all that is and for some of our journey we just accept implicitly what is going on.  The state of consciousness leading out of sleep is called hypnopompia and it is something that we can feel when we focus on that moment before we are fully awake and back into the rhythm of our day.  To get a sense of this feeling we can take a moment to watch this video and realize that each moment of our journey is special and when understood and appreciated our own version of high performance gets ever more real.. https://youtu.be/vEWM6tq7Hps

Loving life when I am learning

Joe

In the mountains 

There are a lot of places that we go on our journey and yet we keep coming back to the mountains to test our soul, to connect with nature and to be entertained by the changing conditions that are ever present.  Today we completed a 50 mile mountain run in Leadville CO.  The high mountain country tests all that we can bring to the day.  The altitude alone is a challenge, throw in big climbs, snow and rain, rocks and streams and the 12 hours that we spend in the mountains do everything they are supposed to do.   So, even when it is hard there is an attraction to want to be there in the elements, testing and learning.  It never gets old and it is always an amazing experience.  Here’s to the mountains and all that they provide us, we are better because of them.

Loving life when I am in the mountains

Joe

With Respect

There are some mantras and topics that just seem to bear repeating.  They never get old and they serve as the foundation for a vibrant, caring, growing community, one that enables us to go on our journey and to find goodness along the way.  And so when we feel or see that we are missing the mark on one of the core topics we need to reiterate it again and again so that it becomes part of the fabric of what we stand for and what we care about.  Respect needs to be embraced more deeply, to give due regard for the feelings, wishes, rights, or traditions of others.  To bring a level of care and attention to others around us and those to whom we meet. We start with Respect and we take it up a notch and then we have a fighting chance to have each of us feel good about our interactions with each other.  Yes, respect first and foremost – given and received….and appreciated every time!

Loving life when I am respected

Joe

Freedom

Our journey is played out on so many levels but none more important than the freedom that we have in the lands that we live.  The Fourth of July just a good reminder that we need to stay true to the freedom that we have all fought for in our histories and our lives.  We can have differences and be different, but we cannot compromise on the foundation that freedom provides for allowing us to live as we can and should with aspiration and hope for goodness for all.  Yes, freedom the rock that we build on – let’s protect it and leverage it and let freedom reign.

Loving life when we all are free…

Joe

Outside is where it's at…

It would seem that we would need a little reminder that our journey needs to be primarily lived and experienced when outdoors.   The draw to the couch, to Netflix, to email, is great and yet there is nothing like the feeling of nature, of new, of rough and raw that we get when we step outside and into what Mother Nature has constructed for us.  Do we need a reminder of what is in store for us…maybe not….but maybe if we are looking for inspiration, for that feeling that I need to get outside, then this few minute video might just do the trick  https://youtu.be/FCPdIvXo2rU  .  When we finish watching let’s pull out a piece of paper and pen and write down where we are going next and then the time after that.  It is fun to push and find our limits, we know for sure that they are not found inside……let’s go outdoors

Loving life when I am outdoors 

Joe