Four Words that Changed My Life

That’s a pretty powerful statement to make – saying that only four words could change my life. But it’s true. These four words literally gave me a different outlook and helped me deal with all the craziness and challenges that have crept into my life and shaped me into the person I am today. These four words have helped me keep my sanity and deal with an uncertain future. Ok, ok, so what are they already???


That it! These four short words have made an immense impact on me. You see, when a crisis hits, you may feel like you have no choices and have no control, but you always do.

At your core you always have a choice;

At your core you always have control.

When you realize this, you will be able to handle anything that comes your way. All you have to do is stop and ask yourself: what are my choices and what can I control right now at this very moment? This is true even in the middle of a pandemic:  you have choices, there are opportunities, and you do have control. It may not look exactly the way you imagined it so you may have to be a little creative and a bit open minded. It is all there in front of you, though, and it’s up to you to decide how you will handle the changes that come your way.

You can spend your days complaining about your losses or you can grow from them. The choice is yours, but make no mistake – you cannot do both. You cannot complain and grow at the same time.

So, which one will you choose? Remember the four words I shared that changed my life. Now it’s up to you:



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Imagine How Wonderful That Would Be

What are you going to do today to lift up the people you come in contact with? Think about it. So many times, we are consumed with our own problems and challenges that we often don’t even notice the other people in our lives. So, ask yourself that simple question:

What am I going to do today to lift up the people I come in contact with?

I’m heading to Target this afternoon and I’m going to repeat this simple question to myself. I’m curious to see if it will affect the way interact with the cashier or the people passing me with their shopping carts. This could also work on people in your personal life: your spouse, child, sibling, and the list goes on. I’m confident that by making others feel better, it will come full circle and make you feel better as well. Imagine how wonderful that would be.

Want to give it a try? Simply ask yourself right now:

What am I going to do today to lift up the people I come in contact with?


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Forgetting Everyday Habits

Before COVID, I loved working at coffee shops. Because I’m an extreme extrovert, the thought of working from home and not seeing another person was torturous. So nearly every day I would pack up my laptop and head anyplace where I could see, hear and interact with other people.

So, when the coffee shops suddenly shut their doors and became drive-thru only, I was forced to set up my office inside my home having no contact with the outside world. It has been a rough road.

Then, after seven months (and counting) some coffee shops began to open their patios and set up outside tables. I can finally get back to my much missed routine.

It never dawned on me, though, that I may have forgotten some very basic things. You can imagine my complete surprise when I was sitting on the patio of my favorite coffee shop, laptop open and ready to go, and I can’t logon to the internet. I have totally forgotten how!

It took a few minutes for my brain to reboot and it all came back to me. Isn’t it interesting, though, that one of my everyday habits, something I knew like the back of my hand, was suddenly erased from my memory. With all the new habits I have formed over the last few months, I wonder how many old habits I have forgotten. Only time will tell.


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What If You Couldn’t Fail?

Today we have a guest post from my colleague and friend, Dianne Morr. Dianne is an award-winning speaker and author of Choose Happy, 25 Happiness Habits to Transform Your Life. Today she shares some wisdom she recently learned from an art teacher. Enjoy!

What If You Couldn’t Fail?

In hopes of reaching the end of my journey on this planet without losing all my marbles, I decided to enhance my brain power by learning something new.

Even though I suspected that artistic ability was one of those things you were either born with or not, like red hair, I chose to have a go at acrylic painting.

The first art class I found at a local college lifelong learning center proved to be basically a wine and paint experience without the wine. The teacher walked us step by step through the process of duplicating a painting she had created prior to the class. It was fun but I did not learn enough to do anything on my own. After a little hunting I found an art teacher named Kim who taught technique and coached students through whatever project they chose.

Kim asked me what I hoped to learn. I told her I hoped to develop an artist’s eye so that I could learn to create a work that looked like what I saw. She told me she could help me do that.

We began with a sketch of a still life. As she set me up with a sketchbook and pencils, she also handed me an eraser and explained, “Art is the process of trying and revising.â€

Trying and revising. Aha! Editing!

Having spent my entire career in various fields of writing, I knew that a writer does not create a perfect page on her first try. I was stunned to find out that an artist didn’t create perfect work on her first try either. What Kim said sounded like what I told clients I had helped write their books. “Don’t judge your first draft, just get it on paper. You can fix a bad draft, you can’t fix a blank page.â€

Now that I know art depends on trying and revising, I saw my first attempt at a pencil sketch as a first draft. Kim gave me tools such as a ruler, a skewer, and that all-important eraser to make my sketch lines as accurate as possible.

Learning new things took on a whole new meaning when I found out that trying and revising can apply to anything. Want to learn to dance? Play a sport? Plant a garden? Give it a try. If your first try doesn’t turn out as you hoped it would, revise your approach, make adjustments, and see if your second try is better. There are no limits on trying and revising. You can keep at it till you are satisfied with your attempt or ready to jump to another activity.

Giving yourself permission to try and revise takes away the fear of failing. When you can’t fail, you can try anything. Enjoy the possibilities. What are you going to try first?


Categories: Personal Development Positive Attitude Professional Development Professional Speaker
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