Make a Difference Monday, Week 44: Holding a Grudge Makes You the Victim

My thoughts, based on the Professional Guidance Cards:

Week 44: Holding a Grudge Makes You the Victim

“Holding a grudge is like taking poison and expecting it to hurt the other person.”

Were truer words ever spoken?

Sadly, I personally know people who have gone literally years barely speaking a word to one another, harboring hurts and slights as if they were food in a famine. The reality, of course, is that holding onto that pain was starving them – starving them of nurturing relationships, a positive outlook, and happiness itself. You cannot be a truly happy individual when so much of your energy is going toward reliving hurtful incidents over and over, without end.

In a work environment, these bad feelings can often stem from colleagues jockeying for “position” or a dysfunctional relationship with someone either higher or lower on the org chart than yourself. In a perfect world, every employer and every manager would take a good, long look at their organization and objectively determine who within the group could use some counseling on how to be part of a harmonious workplace. But we don’t live in that world so, for most of us, it is up to us to create the workplace we want to inhabit.

Every glance, every word, every thought you have is a form of energy. Energy is power – the power to create harmony or discord. What are you creating today?

This week’s intention:

I will withdraw any connection I may have or begin to have with negative relationships, letting them go willingly and purposefully, in order to allow the free flow of positive and creative energy in my life.

What is your intention this week, in keeping with this theme?

Please comment here and also add to the conversation on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #MakeADifferenceMonday

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Make a Difference Monday, Week 43: Positive Action is the Best Route at Work

My thoughts, based on the Professional Guidance Cards:

Week 43: Positive Action is the Best Route at Work

While forgiving those who irritate us and releasing bitterness empowers us to move forward, there is actually often something to be gained from examining the original irritation itself.

People who always agree with us and don’t challenge our opinions rarely inspire us to change or see things from a different perspective.

When confronted with criticism or negative feedback, we might ask ourselves, “Is there any merit or truth in it?” Getting past the way the remarks are delivered may be difficult (that’s where the forgiveness comes in!); but, much like with oysters, the original comment may end up being the irritant that can create your next pearl of an idea!

This week’s intention:

When faced with unpleasant situations, I will look for the truth and turn my daily negatives into positive action.

What is your intention this week, in keeping with this theme?

Please comment here and also add to the conversation on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #MakeADifferenceMonday

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Make a Difference Monday, Week 42: Empower Yourself by Releasing Bitterness

My thoughts, based on the Professional Guidance Cards:

Week 42: Empower Yourself by Releasing Bitterness

“Forgive and forget,” while often believed to be a Biblical admonition, is actually not a phrase used in the Scriptures.

William Shakespeare added more phrases and sayings to the English language than anyone, and only he comes close with “Pray you now, forget and forgive” in King Lear.

Regardless of origin, forgiveness is easy to say, harder to do. “Everyone says forgiveness is a lovely idea until they have something to forgive,” said C.S. Lewis.

Recent research studies suggest, however, that forgiveness may bring enormous benefits to the person who can bring him/herself to forgive – including lower blood pressure, a stronger immune system, and a drop in the stress hormones circulating in your blood.

So, while forgiveness is a gift to be given, it may also be looked upon as a “selfish” act, as the benefits to yourself may be as great as the gift you are giving.  Long live this type of “selfishness”!

This week’s intention:

Where I feel resentment, anger, or hurt, I will release it to the Universe to deal with and concentrate on living life as a positive and forgiving human being, knowing that this not-so-simple act creates a greater good.

What is your intention this week, in keeping with this theme?

Please comment here and also add to the conversation on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #MakeADifferenceMonday

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Make a Difference Monday, Week 41: Life is Not a Stress Rehearsal

My thoughts, based on the Professional Guidance Cards:

Life is Not a Stress RehearsalWeek 41: Life is Not a Stress Rehearsal

Once again, it seems as if the week’s Professional Guidance Card has chosen me, rather than the other way around.

With the passing of Steve Jobs in the past week, much has been written and said about his resolve to live every day as if it were his last. Steve may have had a “good reason” for living his life that way, but haven’t we all? Who among us knows what tomorrow holds – or if it will be here at all?

The message of this week’s card is simple: Reach for your highest potential and squeeze out everything life has to offer.

While we cannot avoid every pain and challenge, we can choose to embrace them as part of the divine gift of being alive. We can learn from tough times, rather than wallow in them. We can choose to see the glass as always half full.

This week’s intention:

There is only here. There is only now. There is only this. What will I choose to do with it?

What is your intention this week, in keeping with this theme?

Please comment here and also add to the conversation on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #MakeADifferenceMonday

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Make a Difference Monday, Week 40: To Endure, You Need a Spiritual Path

My thoughts, based on the Professional Guidance Cards:

Professional Guidance CardsWeek 40: To Endure, You Need a Spiritual Path

Whether you are inclined toward organized religion, personal spirituality, or simple awe at the wonders of nature, it is important to recognize that having a spiritual path is critical for seeing you through, especially in challenging times.

The haze we all occasionally experience can be transformed into long-term clarity through a belief that there is a path to be traversed, a path paved with learning experiences, leading us toward greater understanding, serenity, and prosperity.

I don’t necessarily, in this context, define prosperity in dollars-and-cents, but rather a prosperity of the spirit defined by harmony and cooperation, a feeling of well-being and contentment. Prosperity of this kind is achieved through being consciously aware of what is going on inside, on both a physical and spiritual level. You need to look beyond your own ego – the limited self – to connect with something greater than yourself, to see the essential unity of all things.

This week’s Professional Guidance Card put it simply: “Following a spiritual path means assuming a stance that offers the least resistance to the influx of the unitive experience.”

This week’s intention:

I will let the Universe in, to guide my footsteps where they need to go.

What is your intention this week, in keeping with this theme?

Please comment here and also add to the conversation on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #MakeADifferenceMonday

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Make a Difference Monday, Week 38: Be a Leader

My thoughts, based on the Professional Guidance Cards:

Professional Guidance CardsWeek 38: Be a Leader

No matter your place in the work world food chain, you have an opportunity to be a leader.

The receptionist can set the tone for an entire organization by the way she greets every visitor.

The person who steps in to help a co-worker struggling with a project can encourage a pay-it-forward environment that benefits an entire company.

The executive who recognizes not only accomplishments but also initiative, creativity, and a helpful spirit sends a message that the phrase “We’re a family here” is more than a marketing platitude.

This week’s intention:

I welcome the responsibility of leadership and will strive to set a tone of encouragement and appreciation with everyone I come in contact with in my business.

What is your intention this week, in keeping with this theme?

Please comment here and also add to the conversation on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #MakeADifferenceMonday

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