Huff Post Blogging 'R Us
Just in case you haven't heard, Mitch is now a twice-a-week blogger for the HuffPost. Click here for easy access to his articles. If you like what you read, FAN him to receive email alerts.January 28, 2013
Two Dogs Dining
Break time. Stop saving the world (or your company) for the moment and simply enjoy this video. Laughing aloud allowed.January 26, 2013
Why Train People to Become Masterful Brainstorm Facilitators
January 25, 2013
High Impact Brainstorming
If your organization is looking for some savvy brainstorm facilitators to open the creative floodgates OR wants to learn HOW to lead your own breakthrough brainstorm sessions, Idea Champions can help. Check out the above slide show and read what our clients say about the value we add.January 24, 2013
101 CreativiTeas for Innovators
No matter how many times I tell people there's no such thing as a "magic innovation pill," every one keeps asking.
This just in: I don't have the magic pill. But I DO have something even better -- a virtual potion that has the potential to liberate you and all your co-workers from the bothersome obstacles that keep sabotaging your ability to innovate.
Simply read the list below, pick the CreativiTea you most need to imbibe, and take a virtual drink.
1. Opening Up to PossibiliTea
2. Easy Going FlexibiliTea
3. Gandhi-like HumiliTea
4. Well-timed AdaptabiliTea
5. Taking Care of Details Amidst InfiniTea
6. Loosey Goosey ManeuverabiliTea
7. Acceptance of MortaliTea
8. Flashes of NonsensicaliTea
9. Beyond MoraliTea
10. An Occasional Dose of RealiTea
11. Following Your Passion With ImpuniTea
12. Balancing PolariTea
14. Total QualiTea
15. Unfettered CreativiTea
16. Appreciation of DiversiTea
17. Tuning in to SynchroniciTea
20. Old Fashioned PracticaliTea
22. Celebration of IndividualiTea
23. A Deeper Sense of InevitabiliTea
24. Letting Go of FutiliTea
25. A Transformed MentaliTea
26. Go With the Flow FluidiTea
27. Baby Oh Baby SensualiTea
29. Child-like SimpliciTea
30. Tiger-like FerociTea
31. Nose to the Grindstone DurabiliTea
32. Let it Rip TheatricaliTea
33. Grrr!! TenaciTea
34. Authentic AuthenticiTea
35. Mucho GenerosiTea
36. Acceptance of AsymmetricaliTea
37. Quick Moving MobiliTea
38. Enlightened SpiritualiTea
39. Day By Day ClariTea
40. Sylvester Stallone MusculariTea
41. In the Moment SpontaneiTea
42. Twelve Step SobrieTea
43. Beethovian VirtuosiTea
44. Wild Maniacal HilariTea
45. Increased CapaciTea
47. Lucid PerspicaciTea
48. Ha Ha Ha LeviTea
49. Focused SingulariTea
50. A Daily Shot of InsaniTea
51. Expressing Your PersonaliTea
52. Frontal NudiTea
53. International CommuniTea
54. Much More VarieTea
55. Information Highway ActiviTea
56. Higher ProductiviTea
57. Que Sera SororiTea
58. Off the Wall BanaliTea
59. Alimentary CanaliTea
60. Relaxed InformaliTea
61. Sprint? Verizon? AT&Tea?
62. Understanding Primal CausaliTea
64. Huge Amounts of PubliciTea
65. Give Up Feeling ShitTea
67. Beyond Beyond MetaphysicaliTea
68. A Bowl of Soup and a BLTea
69. Hip Hop, Reggae MusicaliTea
70. Calling on Your Own DiviniTea
71. A Touch of SubtleTea
72. Profound ProfundiTea
73. Bottom Line ProfitabiliTea
74. Surprise and SerendipiTea
75. Do It Now InstantaneiTea
76. Proven CertifiabiliTea
77. Solid MarketabiliTea
78. Truth, Love and BeauTea
80. Let Go and Be EmpTea
81. We Are the World SolidariTea
82. A Twist, A Change, Some NovelTea
83. Getting Down to the Nitty GritTea
84. San Andreas FaulTea
85. Midwestern SinceriTea
86. Transcending Financial ScarciTea
87. Death of CertainTea
88. Buddha and KrishnamurTea
89. You Don't Have to Feel So GuilTea
90. Total ResponsibiliTea
91. Challenge AuthoriTea
92. Anyone here From Joisey CiTea?
93. More and More CredibiliTea
94. Get it Done MasculiniTea
95. Be More Receptive to FemininiTea
96. A Three Month Vacation in TahiTea
97. Get Rich and Become a CelebriTea
98. Much Deserved SereniTea
99. Hot Diggity DoggiTea
100. Tons of PositiviTea
101. If All There Is Is Now, What Is EterniTea?January 20, 2013
Coffee, Creativity, and You
After you listen to Marc Black's love song to coffee, please leave a comment below and tell me how coffee impacts your creativity. Does it quicken access to your muse? Get you in the zone? Crank you up to create? Or not?
Download the song (from Pictures of the Highway)January 19, 2013
How to Attract a Big AHA!
What is it that allows some people to get creative breakthroughs while others get only creative breakdowns -- alternately blaming themselves, society, their company, and their increasingly suspect astrological configurations?
Is it true that people who experience breakthroughs are "gifted"? Or are there other factors at work -- factors that we (the people) have more control over than we might think?
While nobody can deny that some people seem to be blessed with "creative leanings" (i.e. Mozart at 4), research has shown that anyone can have the much sought after AHA! experience -- that is, IF they immerse themselves in the little understood process of creation.
Time and again, the literature bears this out: great creative breakthroughs usually happen only after intense periods of intention, immersion, struggle -- even madness.
It is sustained and focused effort towards a specific goal -- not luck, wishing, or caffeine -- that ultimately prepares the ground for creative insight.
This kind of effort does not always generate immediate results and sometimes leads people to conclude that it's just not in the cards for them.
Alas, they forget during their inevitable encounters with doubt, that the BIG AHA! is never far away and can happen at any time, any place, under any condition.
Let's take a look at some classic examples:
Recognized as the "father of modern science," Rene Descartes offers a very interesting footnote to the history of creative breakthrough.
An exceptionally gifted student in 17th century France, young Rene dropped out of school at the age of 17 upon realizing that the only thing he had learned was that he was completely ignorant.
Law school proved no better, nor did a brief stint in the military, or an aborted career as a gambler.
Frustrated with the choices available to him, Descartes decided to retire at the ripe old age of 20.
While his parents, teachers, and friends pleaded with him to change his mind, young Rene was adamant, and for the next two years did little else but stay in bed, read, think, dream, and write.
Curiously, one night in the second year of his retreat, Descartes had a dream in which the essence of what we now know as the "scientific method" was revealed to him.
In time, his discovery was shared with the scientific community and Western science had a new hero. Ah, the paradox of it all!
While scientists far and wide heralded Descartes for his contribution to Western, rational science, no one (in their right mind) would acknowledge that the root of Descartes' discovery came to him in a dream - a non-rational, non-linear, altered state of consciousness in the mind of a dropout!
Descartes story is not at all uncommon.
The truth, the breakthrough, the AHA! came to him only after years of intense, conscious effort.
Like ripe fruit, the answer made its appearance at the right time -- a time when he wasn't trying, but had let himself be receptive to the promptings of his own subconscious mind.
Elias Howe had struggled for years in his attempt to invent a lock stitch sewing machine. His early designs, though inspired, were flawed. Indeed, the needle he designed had a hole in the middle of the shank, which simply didn't work.
Then, one night, depressed at how slowly things were going, Howe dreamed he was captured by a bunch of savages who took him prisoner before the King.
"Elias Howe," screamed the monarch, "I command you upon the pain of death to finish this machine at once!"
Try as he might, Howe still could not find the solution. The King, making good on his word, immediately ordered his troops to take Howe to the place of "execution" (dream pun intended).
As Howe was being led away, he looked up and noticed that the spears the savages were carrying had eye-shaped holes near the top! Voila!
In a flash, Howe awoke, jumped out of bed, and spent the rest of the night whittling a model of the new, improved needle -- the design breakthrough that quickly brought his experiments to a successful conclusion.
At the age of 40, Richard Wagner was going through a serious mid-life crisis. His artistic career was stalled, his marriage was falling apart, and his finances were in shambles.
Desperate, he decided to travel, hoping to find some inspiration. Traveling, however, only tired him.
Then, one morning, just at the moment when he finally gave up on his frantic effort to invoke his muse, Wagner heard a musical theme in a dream -- one that was about to change his life and the history of music.
Explained Wagner, "After a night spent in fever and sleeplessness, I forced myself to take a long walk through the country. It looked dreary and desolate. Upon my return, I lay down on a hard couch. Sleep would not come, but I sank into a kind of somnambulance, in which I suddenly felt as though I were sinking in swiftly flowing water.
"The rushing noise formed itself into a musical sound, the chord of E flat major, whence developed melodic passages of increasing motion. I awoke in sudden terror, recognizing that the orchestral prelude to Das Rheingold, which must have lain long latent within me, had at last been revealed to me. I decided to return to Zurich at once and begin the composition of my great poem."
A prodigy? Yes. Gifted? Yes. Unusually receptive? Yes. But also tuned in to the state of mind that preceded great creative breakthroughs.
Explained Mozart, "When I am, as it were, completely myself, entirely alone, and of good cheer -- say traveling in a carriage or walking after a good meal, or during the night when I cannot sleep; it is on such occasions that my ideas flow best and most abundantly. Whence and how they come, I know not, nor can I force them."
"Those pleasures that please me, I retain in memory, and am accustomed... to hum them to myself. If I continue in this way, it soon occurs to me how I may turn this or that morsel to account, so as to make a good dish of it....agreeably to the rules of counterpoint, and to the peculiarities of the various instruments."
"All this fires my soul, and provided I am not disturbed, my subject enlarges itself, becomes methodized and defined, and the whole, though it be long, stands almost complete and finished in my mind, so that I can survey it, like a fine picture or a beautiful statue, at a glance."
"Nor do I hear in my imagination the parts successively, but I hear them.....all at once. What a delight I cannot tell! All this inventing, this producing, takes place in a pleasing lively dream."
Many people who experience supernormal moments of great creativity report a willingness to let themselves be open to the non-logical, non-linear, and unexplainable promptings of an inner voice.
Maybe you call it a "hunch" or "intuition," but whatever you call it, know that paying attention to it is often the key to manifesting your vision or idea.
Rudyard Kipling, the English writer, was very much in touch with this faculty.
"Most men," wrote Kipling, "keep their personal Daemon (guardian spirit) under an alias which varies with their literary or scientific attainments."
"Mine came to me early when I sat bewildered among other notions. 'Take me and no other,' it said. I obeyed and was rewarded. After that, I learned to lean upon him and recognize the sign of his approach. If ever I held back anything of myself (even though I had to throw it out afterwards), I paid for it by missing what I knew the tale lacked."
"I took good care to walk delicately, lest my Daemon should withdraw. I know that he did not, because when my books were finished they said so themselves with almost the water-hammer click of a tap turned off. 'Note here.'"
"When your Daemon is in charge, do not try to think consciously. Drift, wait, and obey."
It is not only writers and composers that have creative breakthroughs. Molecular scientists do, too.
Notes the Flemish scientist, Kekule, "One fine evening I was returning by the last bus through the deserted streets of the metropolis, which are at other times so full of life."
"I fell into a reverie, and lo! the atoms were gamboling before my eyes. Whenever those diminutive beings had appeared to me before, they had always been in motion, but I had never been able to discern the nature of their motion."
"Now, however, I saw how frequently, how smaller atoms united to form a pair; how a larger one embraced two smaller ones; how still larger ones kept hold of three or even four of the smaller, while the whole kept whirring in a giddy dance."
"I saw how the larger ones formed a chain. I spent part of the night putting on paper at least a sketch of these dream forms."
Then, years later, the big illumination made it's appearance.
"I turned my chair to the fire and dozed. Again the atoms were gamboling before my eyes. This time the smaller groups kept modestly in the background. My mental eye, rendered more acute by repeated visions of this kind, could now distinguish larger structures....long rows, sometimes more closely fitted together; all twining and twisting and snakelike motion."
"But look! What was that? One of the snakes had seized hold of its own tail, and the form whirled mockingly before my eyes! As if by a flash of lightening I awoke. Let us learn to dream, gentlemen."
Kekule had made a most remarkable discovery -- that benzene is a cyclic or ring structure and the carbon chain at the molecular core of the compound does indeed form a chain that "swallows its own tail".
OK, all you aspiring creators, how about a tip from the man who composed the Nutcracker Suite?
"Generally, the germ of a future composition comes suddenly and unexpectedly. It takes root with extraordinary force and rapidity, shoots up through the earth, puts forth branches and leaves, and finally blossoms."
"I forget everything and behave like a mad man. Everything within me starts pulsing and quivering. Hardly have I begun the sketch, before one thought follows another."
"In the midst of this magic process, it frequently happens that some external interruption awakes me from my somnabulistic state. Dreadful indeed are such interruptions. They break the thread of the inspiration."
AUTHOR'S NOTE: I realize there are no stories, in this article, about women with BIG AHA moments. The "literature" is fairly lame in this regard. Most of the anecdotes are about men. I'd like this article to be better balanced. Do you have any examples YOU can share with me -- and I will edit this posting accordingly. (Thanks to Doug Sundheim for pointing this out).
Getting Back Into Our Right Brains
The following is by Val Vadeboncoeur, Idea Champions' Director of Training.
"May God us keep from single vision & Newton's sleep." - William Blake
The prolific Chris Hedges has written a powerful, new piece for Truthdig entitled "We Need Free Thinkers or Society Will Shrivel Up and Die".
I'd like to expand on it.
We need prophets and, as my good friend Roberta, a devoted student of the Torah, remarked the other day -- a "prophet" is not someone who foretells the future -- a prophet is someone who speaks the Truth right here in the moment, saying what needs to be said, whether it's popular or not (and it usually isn't).
We have had some prophets in recent times: comedian George Carlin was a prophet, for example, and so was Bill Hicks.
They told us what needed to be said, but they made us laugh about it so we didn't stone them to death when they did. Maybe Chris Hedges is a prophet.
But, today, we lack people who can see the bigger picture and help us make sense of things because, in great part, we have cut ourselves off from an essential part of ourselves.
We have neglected half of our human inheritance. In fact, we have dismissed it, made it an orphan, and cast it into exile.
The human being is a creature of balance. That's why we get so elated when our child takes his/her first steps.
After being born, this is the most significant event in a human life. It means we are learning about the fundamental reality of being human. We are mastering balance.
With every step we take in our lives, there is a moment where we have to find our balance or fall down. Once mastered, we do this so elegantly that we don't even notice this remarkable skill, much like a cheetah doesn't know how breathtakingly fast it runs, or a bird doesn't know how beautifully it flies. It just does it.
Physical balance is only one small part of it.
We are always balancing some kind of duality -- a duality of left/right, good/bad, up/down, wet/dry, smooth/rough, fast/slow, rich/poor, light/dark, hot/cold, positive/negative, me/you, us/them, etc.
We are always dealing with the reality of opposites. We also have two arms, two legs, two eyes, two ears, two nostrils, two vocal cords, and two brains -- and that's what I want to talk about here.
We don't have one brain. We have two. And they're supposed to work in tandem, like a team of horses.
But our society has lost a critical balance between our two brains. We are overworking one horse and ignoring the other, so it starves to death.
Or to put it another way, instead of using our hammer to do what it is designed to do and our screwdriver to do what it's designed to do, we are trying to do everything with the hammer alone.
It is not the hammer's fault that it can't deal with the application and removal of screws. It is ours for expecting the hammer to be able to do this at all.
In terms of our two brains, commonly referred to as the left brain and the right brain, we are a left-brained biased culture -- and that bias is, in the final analysis, killing us and everything else on the planet.
When our body gets out of balance in some way, that's commonly referred to as "illness". When our minds are out of balance, that should be understood as "mental illness". Our culture, being out of balance in the use of our brains, is, in some sense, mentally ill.
Our left brain is the brain that sees the individual, detects differences, categorizes, measures, experiences time, and follows a single line of thought.
It's the brain that tells us when to cross the street safely, which product is the better buy, and which clothes we should wear that will best suit the day's weather.
It's the brain that's created Science, Mathematics, Logic, Reason, and all manner of technology. It sees "things" and can count, measure, divide, multiply and categorize those things.
It's specialty is isolation and singularity. It's useful and convincing. So useful and convincing, that we have completely identified with it.
When you ask people who they are, they usually respond in a way that indicates that the sum collection of the workings of their left brain is their identity.
The left brain, however, cannot prophesy because it cannot see beyond the material, physical realm. It doesn't even know that anything else but the material realm exists.
It cannot see how the individual things it can see might be connected in unexpected, non-logical, non-spatial, non-temporal ways.
It can't even imagine such things. The left brain cannot empathize, since it sees others as separate entities -- as objects "out there". It cannot have hunches. It cannot create a metaphor. It cannot see the whole, just the parts.
If it wants to know more about a cat, it kills the cat, dissects the cat, takes out and measures all the parts of the cat, and then feels as if it understands what a cat is. It doesn't even entertain the idea that a better way to know what a cat is might be to live with a cat, watch the cat, and empathize with the cat -- an approach that has the additional benefit of still having a cat when all is said and done.
Those qualities of connectivity and wholeness and warmth all belong to the kingdom of the right brain.
The right brain has insights and can imagine what is not yet manifest. It can be inspired. It can connect with the heart so it can feel and experience joy or sadness and the entire range of emotion.
It can put this experience of connectivity and emotion into the language of music and form and movement. It can see possibility and the road not taken. It is somewhat magical, it is now (not burdened by a past or worried about a future), and it is what we often refer to as "love".
As a society, we have rejected the genius of the right brain and we are suffering this imbalance every single day in a myriad of ways.
We suffer with psychological isolation and drug addiction. We suffer when quantity trumps quality in our food, our sex lives, and our education. We suffer when we create extremes of wealth, health, and value that cause tensions in our society that explode into violence.
We suffer when we scapegoat people, and create fear-inducing enemies and bogeymen that we try to destroy -- creating war, injustice and chaos. We suffer when we exploit our planet, and our fellow living creatures, for profit, without realizing that we are destroying our own lifeline -- that we are cutting off the very branch we are sitting on.
It's way past the time when we have to recognize our full humanity and start paying a whole lot more attention to our ignored and belittled magical right brain.
We are suffering unnecessarily because we are not in balance with our own true nature.
We are the "thinking creature" only using half of our thinking ability, and it's not even the better half, in my opinion.
We are like the cheetah using only two of its four legs to run, or a bird trying to fly by flapping only one wing.
Is this prophecy? I don't know, but what I do know is that we need to find our balance in our thinking -- and soon -- or we will all fall down.
That's the bad news.
The good news is that we are designed to do exactly that.January 17, 2013
Walt Disney Speaks!
January 15, 2013
50 Awesome Quotes on Possibility
1. "Start by doing what's necessary; then do what's possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible." - St. Francis of Assisi
2. "Sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast." - Lewis Carroll
3. "The Wright brother flew right through the smoke screen of impossibility." - Charles Kettering
4. "In order to attain the impossible, one must attempt the absurd." - Miguel de Cervantes
5. "The secret of life is to have a task, something you devote your entire life to, something you bring everything to, every minute of the day for the rest of your life. And the most important thing is, it must be something you cannot possibly do." - Henry Moore
6. "It's kind of fun to do the impossible!" - Walt Disney
7. "I am where I am because I believe in all possibilities." - Whoopi Goldberg
8. "What is now proved, was once only imagined." - William Blake
9. "Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities. Truth isn't." - Mark Twain
10. "The limits of the possible can only be defined by going beyond them into the impossible." - Arthur C. Clarke
11. "Never tell a young person that anything cannot be done. God may have been waiting centuries for someone ignorant enough of the impossible to do that very thing." - John Andrew Holmes
12. "God created a number of possibilities in case some of his prototypes failed. That is the meaning of evolution." - Graham Greene
13. "Whether you believe you can or not, you're right." - Henry Ford
14. "Most people are not really free. They are confined by the niche in the world that they carve out for themselves. They limit themselves to fewer possibilities by the narrowness of their vision." - V.S. Naipaul
15. "I don't regret a single excess of my responsive youth. I only regret, in my chilled age, certain occasions and possibilities I didn't embrace." - Henry James
16. "In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, in the expert's mind there are few." - Shunryu Suzuki
17. "The future belongs to those who see possibilities before they become obvious." - John Sculley
18. "One's only rival is one's own potentialities. One's only failure is failing to live up to one's own possibilities. In this sense, every man can be a king, and must therefore be treated like a king." - Abraham Maslow
19. "The possibilities are numerous once we decide to act and not react." - George Bernard Shaw
20. "We all have possibilities we don't know about. We can do things we don't even dream we can do." - Dale Carnegie
21. "An optimist expects his dreams to come true; a pessimist expects his nightmares to." - Laurence J. Peter
22. "When nothing is sure, everything is possible." - Margaret Drabble
23. "Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand." - Albert Einstein
24. "I am neither an optimist nor pessimist, but a possibilist." - Max Lerner
25. "If I were to wish for anything, I should not wish for wealth and power, but for the passionate sense of the potential, for the eye which, ever young and ardent, sees the possible. Pleasure disappoints, possibility never. And what wine is so sparkling, what so fragrant, what so intoxicating, as possibility!" - Soren Kierkegaard
26. "All things are possible until they are proved impossible. Even the impossible may only be so, as of now." - Pearl S. Buck
27. "Until you're ready to look foolish, you'll never have the possibility of being great." - Cher
28. "This has always been a motto of mine: Attempt the impossible in order to improve your work." - Bette Davis
29. "You and I are essentially infinite choice-makers. In every moment of our existence, we are in that field of all possibilities where we have access to an infinity of choices." - Deepak Chopra
30. "Some people see things as they are and say 'Why?' I dream of things that never were and say 'Why not?'" - George Bernard Shaw
31. "The thing the sixties did was to show us the possibilities and the responsibility that we all had. It wasn't the answer. It just gave us a glimpse of the possibility." - John Lennon
32. "I love those who yearn for the impossible." - Goethe
33. "Every man is an impossibility until he is born." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
34. "If you can't, you must. If you must, you can." - Tony Robbins
35. "A likely impossibility is always preferable to an unconvincing possibility." - Aristotle
36. "If someone says can't, that shows you what to do." - John Cage
37. "You must do the thing you think you cannot do." - Eleanor Roosevelt
38. "Apparently there is nothing that cannot happen today." - Mark Twain
39. "Most of the things worth doing in the world had been declared impossible before they were done." - Louis D. Brandeis
40. "The possible's slow fuse is lit by the imagination." - Emily Dickinson
41. "I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it." - Pablo Picasso
42. "If we all did the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves." - Thomas Edison
43. "Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars." - Les Brown
44. If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours." - Henry David Thoreau
45. "Everything you can imagine in real." - Picasso
46. "Everything that is done in the world is done by hope." - Martin Luther
47. "Dream as if you'll live forever. Live as if you'll die today." - James Dean
48. "I don't dream at night, I dream all day. I dream for a living."
- Steven Spielberg
49. "The shell must break before the bird can fly." - Alfred Tennyson
50. "If not you, who? If not now, when?" - Rabbi HillelJanuary 10, 2013
How to Go Beyond Self Improvement
In 2012, more than five million books were published worldwide.
Of these, a sizable percentage were of the "self-help" variety, a growing genre that promises to help people improve the quality of their lives -- to become happier, healthier, smarter, kinder, thinner, cooler, richer, less depressed, selfish, anxious and, generally speaking, better in countless ways society uses to define what it means to be successful human being.
At the core of the self-help book world is a fundamental assumption around which all of the writing revolves -- that there is a self to improve -- an essence at the core of a human being that is flawed and needs some tweaking.
And while this assumption certainly attracts a lot of book buyers, there is another kind of book, beyond self-improvement, that addresses an even more basic theme -- not improving the self, but knowing the self -- what sage Greek philosophers were referring to, centuries ago, when they distilled the purpose of life down into two simple words: know thyself.
This is the province of the newly published The Greatest Truth of All: You Are Alive! (21 excerpted talks of Prem Rawat) -- a 198-page book that awakens, inspires, and demystifies the so-called "search for self".
The message of the book is profoundly simple -- one that Prem Rawat has, primarily, been delivering orally for the past 40 years via live presentations -- that it is possible for all 7 billion people on planet Earth to experience peace -- no matter what their profession, social style, tax bracket, or education
Written in a highly engaging, breezy style, The Greatest Truth of All offers the reader easy access to a topic too often dismissed as esoteric, "spiritual", or woo woo.
Prem Rawat, very much a modern man with a well-developed sense of humor and a gift for story telling, has found a way to decode the essence of "self-knowledge" and delivers it, to the reader, like a tall, cool drink of water on a hot summer day.
So... if you're looking for a powerful "best practice" to help you connect with the core of who you truly are, this book might be for you.
January 08, 2013
Available on Amazon, $16.00
Got the Business Blues? Sing It Out!
If you work in an organization where complaint rules the day, it's time to do something about it. Yes, it's possible. Bitching and moaning can actually give way to genius and engagement. A homeopathic dose of the blues is all you need.
I'm talking about Face the Music -- a very cool, interactive "business blues" simulation that gives people a chance to get things off their chest AND, at the same time, learn what it takes to get out of the box, take a risk, build a team, and have some fun for a change.
I co-founded this baby, with Paul Kwicienski, back in 1999. It's still cooking -- a great way to add life to any corporate conference, retreat, meeting, or awards ceremony.Why You Like Lists and Maybe Shouldn't
If you are a lover
you will probably find
my most recent
Huffington Post list
right up your alley.
If you, like Newton's
Third Law of Motion,
are the equal and opposite
reaction to lists,
you will find
Val Vadeboncouer's following
a refreshing breath of
20 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULDN'T MAKE LISTS
1. They exist in a vacuum with no context.
2. They over-simplify, sometimes dangerously so.
3. They promise instant knowledge and yet deliver usually nothing but an arbitrary and momentary series of the author's already-existing prejudices.
4. Lists seem to imply choices, however they are blind to the possibilities that didn't make the list -- usually unconsciously.
5. They give the illusion that the list maker KNOWS something, when all he/she might know is how to make a list.
6. Lists reinforce our ADD culture instead of fighting against it.
7. Lists appeal to the left brain need for order and linearity. They insist that the right brain not be engaged which tends to cut us off from feeling, intuition and life itself.
8. Lists are composed of sound bytes, otherwise known as unthinking chatter gathered from the chatter of those around us.
9. We grew up with lists (laundry lists, shopping lists, etc.) and, therefore, like bad habits, they represent a past and a self that does not exist any more.
10. Lists can be easily altered at any time -- updated, added to, subtracted from -- which should give us some indication as to their arbitrary nature and reveal to us that, instead of being finite, as they seem to be, they are, in reality, practically infinite.
11. Lists give us an instant opportunity to disagree. They take a stand somewhere and create an instant reaction. They create a push-pull, I-You dichotomy. If you want to pick a fight with someone, make a list and show it to them.
12. Lists give readers the hope that they are being given a "crash course" on a topic of great significance while all they are really being given is someone else's temporary illusions.
13. People feel no compunction about sharing lists, thereby spreading the infection virally.
14. Lists are numbered, which gives the items the seeming solidity of definition, order, and thought where none may exist.
15. Lists can be folded up, put in one's pocket, carried around, thrown away, and replaced by a new list -- part of the disposable nature of the consumer world.
16. Items on lists can be easily crossed off, giving the list maker an instant feeling of accomplishment when nothing of consequence has really been achieved.
17. Lists are great ways for list makers to plug their own books that, in the hyperlinked blogosphere, just adds to the clutter of narcissism that assaults us each and every minute.
18. Lists provide a sense of progression that, unless you are attempting to describe a step-by-step process (like a recipe), does not, most probably, exist outside of that particular list.
19. Lists add to the information overload of the world while providing little wisdom, which is in very short supply.
20. Lists are an example of how the left brain assumes command and tries to order the world so that the left brain can understand it, but this "order" is in piecemeal, disconnected fragments and gives us a truly sketchy, disjointed, and incomplete reality. In other words, lists can't be trusted.
The Social Media Revolution Revelation January 05, 2013
20 Ways to Get Feedback on Your Biggest, Baddest, Boldest New Idea
You've got a great idea. I know you do. But I also know it's just sitting there. In your head. Like a lump. Why? Because you haven't pitched it to anyone.
Everyone -- even your best friends -- all seem so busy, right? And even if they're not busy, you... um....er... uh... don't really know how to kick-start the conversation to get them to help you develop your idea. The hardest part? Beginning.
And so, here's a way to start -- actually, 20 ways to start -- phrases you can use to increase the odds of someone giving you the feedback you need to develop your bold, new idea.
Go ahead. Get your idea out there. Invite someone to give you feedback. You can do this.
20 IDEA FEEDBACK STARTERS
1. "I wonder if you have a few minutes to give me some feedback on a new idea of mine. Is this a good time?"
2. "I'd love your opinion about a new idea that really excites me. Got five minutes to spare?"
3. "I just had a big breakthrough. Mind if I share it with you?"
4. "I need a second opinion on a new idea of mine. Available?"
5. "Can I book some time with you tomorrow to pitch you a bold, new idea of mine. I think you'll find it inspiring."
6. "I just figured out how to _________. Can I share it with you?"
7. "I'd love your sage counsel on a new project of mine."
8. "You're one of the smartest people I know around here. Mind if I share a new idea with you?"
9. "Who do you recommend I talk with around here to help me develop an exciting idea of mine?"
10. "I got a deal for you. I'll buy you breakfast tomorrow if you give me some feedback on a bold, new idea that came to me last night."
11. "I'd love you to play devil's advocate with me for a few minutes. Mind if I pitch you a new idea of mine?"
12. "When would be a good time for the two of us to get together and brainstorm an idea with the power to change our industry?"
13. "I need you help. I really do. Can you help me think through a new and untested idea of mine?"
14. "I've got a great idea that I'm really confused about. Can you help me sort it out?"
15. "Everyone I talk to tells me you're the resident genius around here. Mind if I pitch you a great idea that needs some polishing?"
16. "Would you be open to being my coach? I've got an awesome idea that's kind of flapping in the wind."
17. "If you've got five minutes, I'd love your help thinking through a great, new possibility."
18. "Can I take you to lunch today to help me refine a new idea?"
19. "Got 60 seconds to give me some feedback?"January 03, 2013
The First Annual eBook Poll
If you like this blog, you'll like our eBooks. But before we publish. we need your input. Click here to respond to our eBook poll.January 02, 2013
38 Awesome Quotes on Change
1. "It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change." - Charles Darwin
2. "Change before you have to." - Jack Welch
3. "People don't resist change. They resist being changed!" - Peter Senge
4. "Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself." - Leo Tolstoy
5. "The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking." - Albert Einstein
6. "Nothing endures but change." - Heraclitus
7. "You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete." - Buckminster Fuller
8. "Never believe that a few caring people can't change the world. For, indeed, that's all who ever have." - Margaret Mead
9. "I put a dollar in one of those change machines. Nothing changed."-George Carlin
10. "The key to change... is to let go of fear." - Rosanne Cash
11. "When people are ready to, they change. They never do it before then, and sometimes they die before they get around to it. You can't make them change if they don't want to, just like when they do want to, you can't stop them." - Andy Warhol
12. "Be the change you want to see in the world." - Mahatma Gandhi
13. "Things do not change; we change." - Henry David Thoreau
14. "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference." - St. Francis of Assisi
15. "We change whether we like it or not." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
16. "When you're finished changing, you're finished." - Benjamin Franklin
17. "All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another." - Anatole France
18. "When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves." - Victor Frankl
19. "Without accepting the fact that everything changes, we cannot find perfect composure. But unfortunately, although it is true, it is difficult for us to accept it. Because we cannot accept the truth of transience, we suffer." - Shunryu Suzuki
20. "If you want to make enemies, try to change something." - Woodrow Wilson
21. "Faced with the choice between changing one's mind and proving that there is no need to do so, almost everyone gets busy on the proof." - John Kenneth Galbraith
22. "Our only security is our ability to change." - John Lilly
23. "If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude." - Maya Angelou
24. "Life belongs to the living, and he who lives must be prepared for changes." - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
25. "The only way to make sense of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance." - Alan Watts
26. "The world hates change, yet it is the only thing that has brought progress." - Charles Kettering
27. "We live in a moment of history where change is so speeded up that we begin to see the present only when it is already disappearing." - R.D. Laing
28. "People change and forget to tell each other." - Lillian Hellman
29. "The rate of change is not going to slow down anytime soon. If anything, competition in most industries will probably speed up even more in the next few decades." - John Kotter
30. "Company cultures are like country cultures. Never try to change one. Try, instead, to work with what you've got." - Peter Drucker
31. "In times of rapid change, experience could be your worst enemy."-J. Paul Getty
32. "Change your thoughts and you change your world." - Norman Vincent Peale
33. "Know what's weird? Day by day, nothing seems to change, but pretty soon...everything's different." - Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes
34. "We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the life that is waiting for us." - Joseph Campbell
35. "It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird: it would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg. We are like eggs at present. And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg. We must be hatched or go bad." - C. S. Lewis
36. "If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading." - Lao Tzu
37. "The changes we dread most may contain our salvation." - Barbara Kingsolver
38. "If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got." - Anon
Big thanks to Val Vadeboncouer for locating these quotes.
Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:00 PM