Wealth through Volunteering

kids handsMy #OneWord365 journey continues.

Wealth, as you know from my previous posts, means much more than monetary success.

Wealth can take many forms and can grow in arenas like Friendships, Faith, Family and Learning.

One major area important to grow your Wealth is in Volunteerism.

Volunteering has many impacts on a person.  Growth of your heart, growth of your personality, and the opening of your mind to a global view that leads to the generation of creative solutions to fix major societal problems.

Wealth from Volunteering doesn’t come easy however.

As children, we are ingrained with a helper attitude.  Kids love to help cook, clean and be “big helpers” as it is part of their hearts and a gift that I think God gives everyone at birth.

The challenge for us comes when we start letting life get in the way of that spirit of helping.

Middle school, high school, boyfriends, girlfriends, college, careers, marriage, kids etc. all throw life’s challenges at us.  And in huge bundles.

Once that happens, we suppress our volunteer spirit and once it is suppressed, it is hard to break out of the volunteer prison it is in.

If we just reach out and take a chance on volunteering as adults, we can break through and find child like helping heart again.  Once that happens, it becomes infectious and you want to volunteer even more hence the beginning of creating Wealth through Volunteering.

Wealth through Volunteering does the most important thing of all in our lives.  It re-prioritizes and moves life’s challenges from the forefront to the background and opens the doors to what impacts us via Volunteering.

Today, reach out and start volunteering somewhere.  Greet at church, work at a soup kitchen or help with Habitat for Humanity.  Anything that you like.

Then, and only then, can you start opening up your Wealth through Volunteering.




Reason I Won’t Debate Gun Control With You

FE_PR_121812_handgun (1)There is no debate that there is a lot of press on Guns and Gun Control right now and that tragedies like Sandy Hook are just heart wrenching no matter what side of the debate you fall on.

What is absolutely irresponsible about the whole thing however, is that people with opinions on both sides are just spouting off about what has to be done or not done without digging deep into the facts and statistics.

The news media slants statistics to fit their audience (Oh, yes they do), the left wingers are visible spouting that everyone has guns and is going to kill people while the ring wingers state that the only way to protect America is for everyone to carry a gun.  This all the while people all over Facebook are blowing up their status updates with name calling.  Oh, yeah, before I forget, next time you want to shoot me a message and call me a “Tea Bagger” check your frickin facts…..I am neither right nor left.  And if you can’t come up with something better than calling people things like that, I classify you as an uneducated and insignificant contributor to the argument.  Shut up in other words since you probably didn’t understand what I just said.

Now, that off my chest.  Top reasons I won’t have a Gun Control debate with you…not yet anyway.

1)  Neither side is looking at the facts and the true statistics.  Why?  Because most of them are still coming out and haven’t been fully updated.   What you are seeing in the media and in newsprint are not full on sets of statistics.  They are samplings.   It is amazing to me how many people spout off how many crimes are committed with guns, or not, and jump on the bandwagon for either side without knowing the facts.

2)  Because you cannot have a civil debate without name calling.  See above.  If I see another Facebook status update that refers to either side as some sort of “name” I am simply just going to drop you.  What?  Are you in 2nd grade?  Good grief you all sound like a bunch of children out there.

3)  Because you follow suit with what ever your political party affiliation wants.  First, I could give a flying rips butt that Obama came out with an Executive set of Orders on Gun Control and not because I am some right wing nut job.  I don’t care because it is a political stunt and nothing more.  Hey, I agree we have to take a look at doing something and I will be the first one to state I do not get why anyone needs a high capacity automatic rifle….however, coming out with a set of 24 orders that don’t have a whole heck of a lot of luck fixing anything is political posturing.  Don’t think so?  One example.  Background checks.  Do you honestly think a criminal is going to think “Hey, I cannot commit this crime yet.  I haven’t registered my gun.”  Heck no.  The ones committing most of the gun crimes don’t have the guns legally to begin with!  They aren’t going to go and magically register them now as part of their civil duty.  These were just orders for honest gun owners….they are not the problem.  Oh, those on the right side of the isle, you are no better.  You aren’t coming up with a whole lot either and doing your posturing too.  No wonder this government has an approval rating between 8-9%.

4)  Because you are not willing to listen to the opposing view.  Gun Owners don’t want to talk control and Control Advocates are afraid to learn and fire a gun.  I will give credit to one journalist from CNN.  (I know, hard to believe).  She had never fired a gun before and went to a training facility.  She learned about safety, the guns, how to use them and when and also the view of a trained professional.  She admittedly came back stating there were a lot more facts to the debate and after learning proper use, understood proper ownership better. I have to give some credit.  It was a great piece and by her working with the opposing view unlike most people, she was able to create an educated piece.  Now, I bashed the media above…no need to point it out.  This was the one bright spot I have to say.

5)  Finally, because people are making this about the death of children.  I’m sorry, do not use the kids of Sandy Hook for the debate.  It is insensitive to the families and poor posturing.  These kids were tragic victims and their families need to be loved right now…not political pawns in a debate that will draw out for years to come.  Lets let them grieve.

So, I finish with this.  We need to step back and look at what truly will fix some of the challenges.  It isn’t taking guns away from Americans.  It isn’t arming everyone to the hilt either.  There is a sensible middle ground but it won’t be found easy, nor quick.  Thats a fact.

The Challenge With Ignorance

Whether we are talking guns, politics, education, religion or a multitude of other topics, one thing seems to be prevalent in the opinions that come from a large majority of people.  Ignorance.

As seen in this funny, yet telling video from Jimmy Kimmel, people walk around in a fog about reality.

I fully understand that there were probably plenty of people that didn’t fall for Kimmel thing, but the fact that anyone did is astounding.

When we walk through life and do not educate ourselves, we create an ignorance within society that makes very poor decisions.  It doesn’t matter what side of the fence you fall on with any topic.

If you approach the gun control debate and herald all the things you want to see done without actually looking at stats and facts, it is an ignorant argument and a dangerous one.

If you champion change in schools by listening to talking points without digging deep into the true challenges students are facing, it is an ignorant position.

If you blast faith and its set of beliefs and the work it does OR rail against non-believers and their thoughts without really looking to understand why each other believes the way they do, you are being ignorant.

If you elect and official because of the letter next to their name and not the policies that align with your beliefs, you are ignorant.

And finally, if you walk through life and expect everyone else to take control of your destiny and do not take the time to empower yourself and prepare yourself for hard decisions in life, you are walking through life with a huge amount of ignorance to how life works.

Thank you Jimmy Kimmel. You are a master at pointing out the ignorance of a vast majority of us.

Wealth- in Friendships

WealthWhen I started my One Word 365 journey this year, I wasn’t sure how much the word Wealth in my initial post would impact me.  Just being honest.

After all, we all try to have big ideas, big plans, and big goals.

This year, however, seems to feel a bit different.

Maybe because Wealth can tend to be a polarizing word and I have to explain why I am using it.  Or, maybe because it is a word that I love to defend so I can place a significant focus on it.

My first focus on Wealth for 2013 is on friendships.

I have never had too much trouble with creating good friendships but do sometimes look and find myself wanting to stretch those friendships further.

Stretching doesn’t mean challenging the friendship to where it struggles but growing it to where it goes deeper than just an occasional discussion about hockey over coffee.

Wealth in Friendships:

Opens the door for personal improvement.

Drives conversation for fruitful disagreement.

Creates fellowship that teaches one to give.

I am not going to expand on any of those points in particular as I believe each person has a slightly different take on them but would recommend you step back and take a look at your friendships this year.

Are you growing your friendships?  Are they creating Wealth for you?

One Word 365- Wealth

One Word 365- Wealth

750px-NY-365.svgOne Word 365 is my brief chance to look forward to 2013 with a focus on One Word.

A word that structures and guides what I do for the year creating a focus that to me is more powerful than a set of resolutions I most likely would have already blown.

My One Word 365 for 2013 is Wealth.

Wealth is a word that is often misunderstood.

In fact, I think it is a word that truly gets a bad rap because the first thoughts of the word “wealth” usually are geared towards privilege or financial power.

I want to look at Wealth in a more obscure manner.  By its secondary definition.  “A great profusion….a wealth of gifts”

In 2013 I want to focus my time and effort in and around the Wealth of gifts I have and also create even more non-financial Wealth.

Wealth through faith.

Wealth through friendships.

Wealth through family.

Wealth through learning.

Wealth through creativity.

Wealth through simply enjoying the quiet.

Cheers to an amazing 2013 and growing Wealthy and creating value in your life that can never diminish!

New Years Resolutions…Ummm…No

new-years-resolutions-twentysomethingsI used to head into the new year and always set some goals or make resolutions.

Honestly though, they never work out and are usually very similar year after year.

In reality, they were even the same as most everyone else hence the series of ads coming across tv. all magically geared towards these resolutions.

Eat healthy.  Save money.  Exercise more.  Bath more than once a week. (Just kidding, I do it twice)

So I do not do it anymore.  Why?  Because it sets me up for failure when there really was no structure for success to begin with.

Don’t believe me?  Find someone you know who totally stuck to their resolutions.  Most likely you cannot do it.

With the launch of 2013 I do however see a need for a fresh start.

2013 is the year I pray leads to some stability, health for family and friends, and a sense of control over the direction I want my life to go, not the direction others want it to go.

I ask this on the first day of the new year.

Do you make resolutions?  Keep them?  What are they if you can share.

Christmas Traditions

IMG_0866Its that time where we Christmas Traditions come to life.

In our family our quirky traditions are eating Chili Dogs on Christmas Eve, Bill the Elf and going to The OpryLand Hotel to see lights and the nativity.

What about you?

What are your traditions?  Are you from another country or culture where things are really different than the US?

Please share and Merry Christmas.