Think About It

Optimism

Optimism-breeds-optimism

Generally speaking, there are two types of people in the world – pessimists and optimists.

Pessimists:

  • believe that bad events will last a long time,
  • imagine the worst,
  • tend to see themselves and situations as ‘helpless’ give up more easily,
  • tend to ‘awfulise’ and ‘catastrophize’, turning mere setbacks in disasters, and
  • are more stressed than the average person,

Optimists:

  • see bad events as temporary and surmountable,
  • are happier,
  • and more content then other people,
  • have greater coping skills,
  • achieve better than pessimistic people, 
  • their health is unusually good, and 
  • they age well and live longer.

Of course, unrealistic optimism can be dangerous. Optimism must be balanced with reality. Otherwise you will end up in denial. However, after decades of research, not one good thing is able to be said about pessimism!

So we can see that our mind (or our habits of thinking) has a powerful influence on our body, our mood, and our entire life. That’s because there is never a thought without a consequence. And if the thought is optimistic, the consequences are better.

Optimism – think about it.


Your Story

Your-life-storyEvery one of us has a story to tell. 

Your life is your story. Your story is your life. 

Like a story, your life has a beginning, a middle, and an ending. There is a theme, characters, subplots (work, family, health, happiness, friendship), trajectory, and tone.

 What kind of story is your life?

  • A comedy?
  • A drama?
  • A thriller (horror) movie?
  • A romance or a love story?
  • An action movie?
  • A fairy tale?

In reality, each of our life stories is an EPIC. It’s a long journey with many scenes, experiences, twists and turns, characters, and smaller individual story lines.

I wonder what is the ‘theme’ of your life? Yes, life has many twists and turns, as well as highs and lows, many of them beyond our control BUT you can choose what the theme of your life is going to be. You are not a victim to your circumstances or to what other people say or do. You can choose how you respond to what comes your way. Don’t make worry, fear, anger, or bitterness the theme of your story. Why not choose joy?

Your Story – think about it.


Conflict Resolution

Wise-owl-2

Have you had a conflict lately?

When we are hurt by other people we all respond differently. 

David W. Johnson, author of Human Relations and Your Career, has identified five styles of conflict resolution:

1. Some people are like teddy bears. They keep the peace at all costs, even if it means giving up what they think or want.

2. Other people are like turtles. They withdraw when conflict comes and they avoid it at all costs.

3. Other people are like sharks. They respond to conflict by going on the attack, seeking to win at all costs. They often get their way as others withdraw from their assault, but they make few friends. 

4. Other people are like owls. They are very wise. They respond to conflict calmly and firmly. They do not run from it, nor do they go on the attack. They listen to the other person’s point of view. They put their case forward firmly and calmly and they seek to satisfy both their goals and the goals of the other party. Their aim is always to maintain the relationship. 

5. Other people are like the fox. Foxes are clever or skilful managers of conflict. They’ve discovered that always responding like a teddy bear, a turtle, a shark, or even an owl is not the answer. Different situations call for different responses. Sometimes it is best to be a teddy bear and give in to save the relationship; sometimes it is best to be a turtle and sidestep the problem, thus avoiding any conflict; sometimes it is right to be a little bit shark-like and to get angry and say a firm no; and sometimes what is needed is to be an owl. Sometimes a compromise is best.

Why don’t you see if you can resolve the conflicts in your world!

Conflict … Think about it.


Re-Fuel

Empty1

Have you ever been on a long drive interstate that took a few days? One of the things I hate to do is stop for petrol. Do you know why? It’s because all of those semi-trailers, caravans, and slow pokes that I have meticulously passed are all going to pass me while I am filling up! Now, that’s annoying. I wish someone would invent a way to fill up without having to stop.

But the truth is that unless you stop and refuel you’re not going to make it. You are going to stall and be stuck by the side of the road. That’s even more annoying!

I find life is a bit like that. There is so much to do, so many people to see and so many places to go. We all get very busy and if we’re not careful we can begin burn out.

We all need to learn what it is to STOP ... and to refuel ... physically, emotionally, and even spiritually.

How’s your journey at the moment? Are you going strong or are you running on empty?

What do you need to do to refuel? What kind of activities fill you up and give you energy for life? Make sure you take time for those things.

Refuel ... think about it.


The Audience of One

Aud

Every one of us experiences something we could call “the grandstand affect.” From a very young age, we have people watching us and responding to our choices and actions. If we do something that people like, they cheer us on. If we do something that people dislike, they frown at us or they may even boo us.

Over time, we can easily learn to play to the grandstand. We thrive on the applause so we seek to please people. We hate disapproval, so we try not to disappoint anybody.

The danger with this is that we can become addicted to the approval of others. Then when we need to make a choice that others may not approve of, we have no courage to do what we know is right.

Maturity requires us to gradually empty our grandstand. Parents, teachers, and other leaders are important people in our life and it is good to have them on the field as coaches and advisors … but we must not live for their approval.

The only person we want to leave in our grandstand is God. Live your life for the audience of One.

Think about it.


Move On

Movie

Have you ever been to a really bad movie? I’m sure you have. Did you go see it again? Of course not! Did you buy the DVD? Come on ... Why would you watch through something you didn’t like all over again! That would be silly.

But in reality that’s something we all do from time to time. Have you ever done something you regretted? Have you ever had someone really hurt you? Did you find yourself replaying it over and over again in your mind? Some people even replay it in high definition ... in surround sound ... and even in slow motion! In doing so, they relive all of the negative emotions and bring the hurtful situation to life all over again.

Don’t do that. Don’t live in the past. Don’t replay things that you regret or things that were hurtful. Forgive yourself and forgive others ... then move on. Don’t live in the past. Don’t relive the pain. You can let go. Yes, it was bad. Yes, it was wrong ... but you don’t have to replay it over and over again. Focus on today ... and what’s coming in the future.

Move on – think about it.


Vision

VisionAround 3,000 years ago, one of the wisest men to ever lived made this observation:

Proverbs 29:18. Where there is no revelation (vision or insight), people cast off restraint (they perish, run wild or live carelessly); but blessed is the one who heeds wisdom’s instruction. NIV

A vision can be defined as "a picture of a preferred future that creates passion on the inside of us."

Without vision, life is a bit of a drudgery. The days drag along without much direction or purpose. In contrast, with a vision we live motivated lives. A vision causes us to set goals that propel us forward each day, whether it is finishing a degree, getting a job, winning the grand final, starting a business, engaging in a ministry, or losing weight.

What’s your vision for your life? What do you SEE this year?

The good news is that God has great plans for us, to give us a future and a hope.

Jeremiah 29:11. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” NIV

This connects with the inbuilt desire we have for purpose, meaning and contribution.

Take time to receive, clarify and focus on God's vision for your life.

Vision. Think about it.


Thoughts

Thought 


There is an old poem that goes like this ...


       

Sow a thought, reap an act; Sow an act, reap a habit; Sow a habit, reap a character; Sow a character, reap a destiny

Your life is shaped by your thoughts. Ultimately, you become what you think about. Life is lived ‘inside out’. It’s not what happens to you but how you respond to it that is the determining factor in your life. Your response to everything is based on what and how you think about what is happening to you.

How do you change? By renewing or reprogramming your thinking. If you can change your thinking you can change your life.

The real challenge today is in our mind. We have to tear down strongholds of faulty thinking. We have to give diligent attention to every thought that comes our way - knowing its potential.

What are you thinking about right now? What occupies your attention most of the time? What is the focus of your thoughts? This will determine your direction in life. Are you happy with where you’re headed? Or do you need to make a change? It all starts with your thoughts.

Think about it.


Atmosphere

Every room has an atmosphere – it includes factors such as the temperature of the room, the lighting, and the freshness of the air – or the lack of it. In the same way, every group – whether it’s a team or a family – has an atmosphere. It describes what it feels like to be a part of that group of people. This atmosphere is a combination of the moods and attitudes of the people in the group.

Learn to be aware of your moods – what they are and what may be contributing to them – and then seek to control them. Your moods directly affect the atmosphere wherever you are - for better or worse.

Don’t be a thermometer – which is a reactive instrument that goes up and down based on the external environment. Be a thermostat – an instrument that directly affects the atmosphere. If things are a bit heated, you help to cool them down. If things are a bit cool – then you do your best to warm them up a little.

This is especially important for leaders because leaders set the relational temperature of every group that they lead.

Atmosphere – think about it.


Longings

Every human being has desires on the inside of them – longings for acceptance, for approval, for a sense of identity, for a sense of belonging, for significance and for a sense of purpose in life.

Where do these longings come from? Are they merely a “wish projection” or could they indicate that there is something outside of ourselves that we were created for … just like the presence of thirst indicates that there is something called water?

History shows us that we will do anything to try to fulfill these desires on the inside of us.

One man tried everything and summarized his experience in a prayer, “O God, our hearts are restless until they rest in thee.” His name is St Augustine.

Could it be that there is a God who is not only our Creator but who also longs to be our Father too? A God who desires for us to be his child?

I pray that God will fill your heart with his love today … helping you to find the acceptance, the security, the significance and the purpose you long for … in Him.

Longings … think about it. 


Love

Jesus told us that the two greatest commandments are to (1) love God with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength and (2) to love our neighbor as ourself. Life truly is all about loving God and loving people.

Of course, our love is simply a response of God’s love for us. We love Him, and others, because He first loved us. As we receive God’s love, we can begin to accept ourselves, even in our imperfect and frail state. This then enables us to love others … as ourselves. 

Unfortunately, many people struggle to love others because in reality they hate themselves and have no love inside to give out freely to others. Unless we know that WE are loved, we will find it difficult to truly love others. 

2,000 years of religious tradition have imbedded in us the mistaken belief that God’s love is something we earn. Giving that up isn’t easy.

Religion is all about what we have to DO to earn our way to God. Christianity is totally different. It’s all about what Jesus Christ has already DONE for us.

Now, that’s good news! … think about it.


A Voice

The Gospel writers tell us that after Jesus was baptized in water the Spirit descended on him in the form of a dove and a voice from heaven said, “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” Jesus knew that his Father loved him.

As you go through your day, what voices do you hear? What are they saying to you? Many people hear voices that tell them they aren’t good enough, that they are a problem, a burden or even a failure.

What would it look like for you to start to hear a different voice … a voice that says, “You are my son … or my daughter … whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” A voice that says, “I created you in your mother’s womb. I love you with an everlasting love. I have a purpose and plan for your life. I want to give you a future and a hope.”

Sometimes the negative voices are so loud and persistent that they can drown out the soft, gentle whisper of God’s voice.

What voice are you listening to today? … think about it. 


The Love of God

Many years ago, a man living in an insane asylum died and was carried to his grave. When they were cleaning out his room they found some words written on the patient’s wall. This is what he had written …

    Could we with ink the ocean fill

    And were the skies of parchment made

    Were every stalk on earth a quill    

    And every man a scribe by trade

    To write the love of God above

    Would drain the ocean dry

    Nor could the scroll contain the whole

    Though stretched from sky to sky

These amazing words were eventually incorporated as a verse in a well-known hymn about the love of God.

It is one thing to know that “God is love” and quite another to know that God loves you. If you could only grasp how much God loves you, it could change your life … and provide a strong foundation for you to have what it takes to truly love others.

The question I’d like to ask you today is not, “How much do you love God?” … but “Do you realize how much God loves you?”

God’s love … think about it.


Trust

Someone once said that trust in the glue of all relationships. Trust holds things together. In contrast, when there is no trust, the relationship starts to break down.

Trust creates confidence and removes suspicion and fear. When trust is high in a relationship, you could say the wrong thing and it will be okay. People give you the benefit of the doubt. Where trust is low, you could say the right thing and even then, people take you wrong or misinterpret you.

How do we build trust?

  • Trust starts with being trustworthy.
  • Be transparent – open, real and genuine.  Don’t be fake or two-faced. Don’t wear masks.
  • Have the courage to speak the truth in love.
  • Treat people with respect, as you would want to be treated.
  • Admit it when you are wrong and be big enough to apologize.
  • Be loyal and avoid gossip. Integrity is how we treat those who are not present.
  • Keep your commitments and your word.
  • Restore trust when it has been lost.
  • Be quick to forgive.

How is the level of trust in your relationships?

Trust… think about it.


The Others

If you think about it, the entire population of the world, with one exception, is composed of OTHERS.

What would life look like if we stopped seeking to get everyone else to revolve around US and started taking OTHER people’s needs and interests as our first concern. That would be pretty counter-cultural in a world that tells us to “Look out for number 1!”

What kind of a world are we creating when everyone wants everything and everyone to orbit around them? When people do things and give affection to others, only as long as it helps meet his or her personal goals and needs, nobody gets anywhere. Life becomes hazardous.

What would it look like if today we each made a move – away from self-centered living towards self-giving love … for OTHERS. What if we all focused on accepting, serving, giving to, seeking the welfare of, and honoring others? What a different world it would be!

Okay, I can hear some of you thinking, “What about me? It isn’t fair …” Well, the truth is, that it is often in giving that we also receive.

Others … think about it. 


The Trinity

The apostle John boldly declares that, “God is love.” He doesn’t say that God is loving, although that is true OR that one of God’s activities is love, although that is true too. He says that God IS love – it is the very core of his being and nature.

The Christian God is revealed as one God existing as three persons – the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit – a Trinity.

Think about it … If there is NO God, then we are here by blind chance, merely a result of natural selection and love is nothing more than a chemical reaction in our brain.

If God exists but is only ONE, then he cannot be love because love can only exist in a relationship.

But if God exists as a community of persons knowing and loving one another, then the ultimate reality in the universe is love relationships - three persons in a dynamic, pulsating activity, a life that could be described as a dance.

The Trinity is not just a nice theological concept. I believe it is a model or prototype for human relationships.   

The Trinity … think about it. 


Forgiveness

Have you ever been hurt or offended by someone? If you haven’t, you probably haven’t lived long or you need to get out a bit more. Everyone gets hurt – many times, either intentionally or unintentionally.

When other people hurt us we have two options.

1. Our first and natural response is often one of anger, bitterness, resentment, hatred or even revenge. We want to make the other person pay. Unfortunately, this type of response stops the healing process, which results in dramatic affects on us physically, emotionally, relationally and spiritually. We were not designed to live with the destructive poison of bitterness on the inside of us.

2. The second possible response is to forgive. To forgive means to give up the right to revenge, to give up the desire to punish or get even, and to surrender our right to hurt the person back.

Forgiveness doesn’t necessarily mean reconciliation. It doesn’t mean we should avoid confronting an issue or stay in an abusive relationship. However, forgiveness pleases God, it frees us and it has the potential to stop the cycle of pain and revenge.

Forgiveness … think about it. 


Faith

The majority of Australians believe in God – they have some sort of what we could call ‘faith.’ Genuine faith in God provides a strong foundation for many people’s lives – especially when everything else around us seems so uncertain.

Of course, real faith is more than just believing in something or someone.

Back in the 1800s there was a famous acrobat named Blondin. He became well known for crossing the Niagara Falls on a tightrope 335 metres long and 50 metres above the raging water. He astonished people by carrying a small table, chair and stove to the halfway point, where he cooked and then ate a meal.

At one point he pushed a wheelbarrow across the wire. He then turned to the crowd and asked if they believed he could carry someone across in the wheelbarrow. Everyone cheered. He then asked for a volunteer. The crowd went quiet.

Faith in God is not just belief or mental agreement. It is a willingness to get in the wheelbarrow and entrust our life into his hands.

Do you believe in God?

Faith … think about it. 


Acceptance

Images-16 One of the deepest needs in every human being is to be accepted – just as we are, warts and all. Some people will do almost anything … just to be accepted by others.

If you want to enhance your own relationships, why not give others the gift of acceptance. Choose to value and respect them – just as they are.

You know, subconsciously, we tend to have a rating scale for people and we treat them based on the value we place on them. If we’re walking down the hallway and someone who we think is a #10 comes along, we say, “Hi, how you going, good to see you!” (enthusiastically) If we meet someone who we think is a #2, we just say, “Hey …” If we see someone who is a -4 … we walk the other way!

We treat people based on the value we place on them. What is you started seeing everyone as a #10 and treating them that way? What a difference that could make in your world!

Acceptance doesn’t necessarily mean approval … but it is a choice to respect people, no matter what.

Acceptance … think about it. 


Expectations

Images-15 We all know that relationships are central to our lives. Of course, developing close relationships with other people is not as easy as it sounds. 

I read an interesting book the other day with a great title: Everybody’s Normal Until You Get to Know Them. How true is that!

Have you ever bought something from a shop that said ‘as is?’ Right away, you know that that item is most likely slightly irregular or even damaged goods. It is not normal.  There will be no refunds, no returns and no exchanges.

That’s a bit what it’s like when we deal with humans. If you’re looking for perfection, you’ve walked down the wrong aisle. The sooner we realise this, the better. We need to develop realistic expectations.

Of course, the really painful part is that I am in the ‘as is’ department too. We don’t like to admit that. We’d rather separate the world into normal, healthy people (like us) … and difficult people (everybody else).

The truth is that no one is totally normal! We all have faults and flaws. The sooner we realise that, the better.

Expectations … think about it. 


The Importance of Friendship

Images-14 The book of Genesis tells us the story of God creating the world. As God created various aspects of our world he declared them “good.” Then after creating human beings he said that this was “very good.” Then suddenly there is turn in the narrative. The writer tells us that God then said, “It is not good that man be alone.” Adam was not lonely – he had God and the animals – but he was alone, a solitary human being. So God made Eve as a friend and partner for him.

This story is not just about marriage but about our need for community – for relationships. None of us are designed to do life alone or in isolation. We need companionship as we journey through life. Most of us know that this to be true YET there a numbers of things that can become barriers to this becoming a reality.

Maybe its an unhealthy individualism, or a workaholic tendency, or a more introverted personality, or possibly a bad past experience. What’s holding you back? Take a step, reach out and connect with someone today. 

Relationships … think about it.


The Art of Apology

Unknown-7 Have you ever had a conflict? Maybe a better question would be, “When was your last conflict?”

As we do life with other people it is inevitable that conflicts and disagreements will occur. How successfully we resolve those conflicts will have a big impact on our lives.

In most conflicts, there are wrongs on both sides. The trouble comes when we only focus on what the other person has done … rather than on our own contribution. Let’s say for example, that you’ve just had a conflict with another person and they were 90% wrong and you were 10% wrong. Don’t focus on their part; focus on yourself. Take care of your 10%.

Learn to say a few powerful words – from your heart.

• Firstly, “I’m sorry.” Those words can change an entire relationship.

• Then try this one, “I was wrong.”

• Finally, try this phrase, ”Would you forgive me?”

When we take responsibility for ourselves and respond to the heat of the moment with humility and kindness … the other person often softens and the conflict can more easily be resolved.

Apology … think about it.


Authenticity

Images-13 A few years ago, I was having lunch with a friend of mine. I asked him how he was doing and he said he was “great.” He then asked me how I was doing. I hesitated at first but then I answered honestly. I was doing it tough and so I told him about it. The depth of our conversation changed immediately. He thanked me for my openness. Sadly, near the end of our time together he admitted that he was going through some challenges too … but he never had the courage to tell anyone. 

Authenticity is very important. It’s about being honest, real, and transpearant … no masks, no hiding, no pretending.

This is not easy – after all we’re into “image projection” and “impression management.” We have a strong tendency to hide and to want to look better than we really are. But what good does that do?

The level of intimacy or closeness in any relationship is directly related to the level of openness in that relationship.

Be open, honest and real. Share how you are really doing … with a safe person, a trusted friend.

Authenticity … think about it.


Perspective

Images-12 Imagine a group of people seated in a circle with a small table in the middle. Let’s now put an object on the table – a vase.

Here are three very important observations: 

First of all, no one sees the vase exactly the same. In fact, everyone sees it differently and has a unique perspective – based on where they are sitting.

Secondly, no one sees the vase accurately. There are parts of the vase that each person cannot see. Some portions are hidden and out of view.

Finally, the only way to form an accurate picture of the vase is to listen to everyone’s perspective.

This is a metaphor for life. Replace the vase with anything else – a discussion, a debate, a conflict, or a decision that needs to be made.

Don’t allow pride and arrogance to cause you to think that you have all the knowledge that you need and that there is nothing for you to learn. Listen to others and allow their perspective and opinions to enrich your own. By doing so, you will gain wisdom and insight.

Perspective … think about it.


Baggage

Baggag I love to travel. The very atmosphere of airports and airplanes energises me. I love visiting new places and meeting new people. However, my wife doesn’t get quite as excited. In fact, she starts packing a few weeks ahead of time, just to make sure she’s got everything she needs. I tend to pack in the last minute.

You know, as we travel through our journey of life we all tend to carry various sorts of baggage with us. Some types of personal baggage from our past can become pretty tiring to carry after a while. In fact, the emotional strain can become overwhelming. Sometimes we have to make a choice to ‘let go’ of things, including situations in the past where we were hurt by other people, where we were disappointed by life, or maybe where we failed ourselves.

What’s in your suitcase? What are you carrying with you right now? What’s dragging you down? Are there some things worth off-loading? Is there some baggage you’d be better off getting rid of? Doubts, questions, regrets, hurts ... maybe it’s time to let them go. Why not do that today ... even right now.

Baggage ... think about it.


John 3:16

Bible - John One of the most well-known statements in the Bible is recorded in the Gospel of John, chapter 3 and verse 16. It goes like this ...

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. NIV

You may have heard this before OR maybe it’s the first time you’ve ever heard those life giving words.

Christian author Max Lucado describes it like this:

“Here is a 26-word sentence of hope, beginning with God, ending with life, and urging us to do the same. It’s brief enough to write on a small piece of paper or memorise in a moment, yet solid enough to weather 2000 years of storms and questions. If you know nothing of the Bible, start here. If you know everything, return here. We all need the reminder. The heart of the human problem is the heart of the human. And here is God’s treatment ...”

  • God loves.
  • God gives.
  • We believe.
  • We live.

God has done his part. The choice is now yours. Will you believe? Will you live the life the He desires for you? It’s your move.

John 3:16 ... think about it.


Faithfulness

Faithful One of the most important qualities to develop in our lives is the quality of FAITHFULNESS. Faithfulness means being true to your word, keeping your promises, being loyal, being reliable, honest, and trustworthy.

Unfortunately, lack of faithfulness, or ‘unfaithfulness’, is becoming quite rampart in our society.

  • A recent study revealed that up to 70% of high school students admitted to serious cheating on tests.
  • More and more people are lying on their tax returns, on their resumes, on reports, and in conversations with other people all the time. All up, it is estimated that we are lied to about 200 times each day!
  • Other studies reveal that almost 50% of married women and over 50% of married men engage in extramarital sex at some time or another during their relationship.

I don’t know about you, but I find these statistics incredibly alarming. But the sobering truth is that each one of us (me included) have the same potential for unfaithfulness. I encourage you today to make a choice to be a faithful person. Be honest. Keep your word. Tell the truth. It starts in the little things.

Faithfulness ... Think about it.


Potential

Potential – we all have it. It’s like a treasure chest waiting to be unpacked. It’s all about who we can become and what we can do to make the world a better place.

Most people don’t see their potential. They tend to see their faults and their limitations. Often it takes other people to see it and then to draw it out.

I’ll never forget a teacher who in my late teen years took me out to lunch. We chatted for a while and then he began to tell me what he and others saw in me. He told me that he believed I had a leadership gift and that God would use me to help other people. I had never seen that in myself before. I remember leaving that lunch feeling a lot taller than I already was. I was really encouraged about myself and my future.

As you mix with people today – don’t just see who they are now. See what they can become. Look beyond the surface and see their potential. Then speak into it. Believe in them, and help them to believe in themselves.

Potential – think about it.


Your Story

Story Every one of us has a story to tell.

Your life is your story. Your story is your life.

Like a story, your life has a beginning, a middle, and an ending. There is a theme, characters, subplots (work, family, health, happiness, friendship), trajectory, and tone.

 What kind of story is your life?

  • A comedy?
  • A drama?
  • A thriller (horror) movie?
  • A romance or a love story?
  • An action movie?
  • A fairy tale?

In reality, each of our life stories is an EPIC. It’s a long journey with many scenes, experiences, twists and turns, characters, and smaller individual story lines.

I wonder what is the ‘theme’ of your life? Yes, life has many twists and turns, as well as highs and lows, many of them beyond our control BUT you can choose what the theme of your life is going to be. You are not a victim to your circumstances or to what other people say or do. You can choose how you respond to what comes your way. Don’t make worry, fear, anger, or bitterness the theme of your story. Why not choose joy?

Your Story – think about it.


Creativity

Creativity Creativity – it’s everywhere. Just have a look at the world around you – there is such a variety of shapes, colours, textures, movements, sounds, and even smells. There is nothing bland, boring, or predictable about the world. In fact, there are over 6 billion people on the planet right now and each one of them has a unique fingerprint. Talk about creativity!

As you go through your day, ask yourself, “Is there a better way?” and “Could we do this differently?” Admit it when things are no longer working and make appropriate changes. Create an atmosphere around you that says, “Let’s find a better way” and that encourages “thinking outside of the box”. Regularly ask yourself, “What’s working well and why?” and “What’s not working and why?” Always be looking for new ideas. Don’t get stuck with a mentality that says, “That’s the way we’ve always done it.”

I believe that God is a creative God and that he calls us to be like him – people who are creative and innovative. He doesn’t want clones or copies. He wants originals. Create, don’t copy!

Creativity – think about it.


Feedback

Feedback One of the characteristics of wise people is that they are open to feedback. Feedback from other people can give us needed insight not only into our own lives but to any issue or challenge we may be considering. If you reject feedback, you will hinder your own personal growth.

All of us have things about ourselves that we are unaware of or don’t see. Only by being open to feedback from others can we learn about these areas and make positive changes.

Every one of us has weaknesses. Usually other people see them before we do! My theory is that the sooner I know about my weaknesses the quicker I can begin to work on them. So if my zipper is down – let me know! If I have cream on my face – tell me! Again, if I punch you when you give me feedback – how many know you’ll think twice about giving me feedback ever again!

Only people who are proud and arrogant assume that they are always right and other people are wrong - or at least misinformed.

Are you open to feedback? Are you teachable? Wise people are. What about you?

Feedback – think about it.