I wish it were easier

It may be that we can’t begin to imagine what it is like to be the victim of profiling or being unjustly accused of a crime. It may be that we don’t know what it is like to worry about putting food on the table or fighting disability. It may seem as though fairness is unevenly distributed. No matter who we are, it may be that we can’t honestly know what it feels like to be someone else.

That doesn’t mean we don’t care! It doesn’t mean we can’t do our part in seeking justice, maximizing possibility, and making influences where needed. It may seem daunting at times, but that is when it is needed the most. It is the media that is maximizing differences at a time we should rejoice in our similarities.

Organizations and governments are nothing but people. It is on us to come together. We will never regret offering people the chance to be treated the way we’d like to be treated. It goes around. It is the right thing to do. It’s the smart thing to do.

Jaren

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Together we are stronger!

I believe it is our nature to shy away from problems when they appear too large. We may feel a sense that there isn’t enough time or resources to make them go away. Yet, when we look back and realize the many difficulties we have overcome, we see that our success came from tackling small parts over time. There isn’t anything we can’t do if we take it step by step and are persistent in moving in a positive direction. While today’s troubles seem daunting, I hope each one of us works toward common goals of improving one day, one person, one opportunity at a time.

Jaren

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One touch, better life

Think with me for a minute about the times you most enjoyed your interactions with others. If they are like mine, it is when you come across someone kind, someone honest, someone patient, or someone filled with empathy. Are you one that others may have thought about when asked for your reflection above? I hope we all are; it is what makes our world a better place. They are simple, ordinary everyday human touches that will shape our future.

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Standby list

When someone asks how you are doing, is your reply fine? When we answer in this way, we are telling ourselves the same thing! Why we would accept fine when we can be so much more.

Are you aware that for us to accomplish an ideal, a dream, a hope, we need no more energy than what is required to get out of bed when the alarm goes off? Think when you push the snooze button, you accept that you aren’t willing to do what you had hoped for when you set the alarm. If, on the other hand, you get right out and going about your day, you have succeeded in meeting an expectation.

Now, with the understanding of the small energy required to start on your path to success, you need only understand one more tip. Success doesn’t always come on our first try. Have you ever flown standby on an airline? Some who are fortunate can get on the first flight; they have more status (experience) than others and move onto the plane right away. Yet, all who are willing to wait (keep trying) will eventually get on the plane.

When you commit to using the small amount of energy needed to accomplish your goal, just remember, you may need to do it a few times to get the desired outcome. It will always come to those who are willing to wait for their turn.

Jaren

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We want families to be able to stay in their homes!

I had the fortune of participating in a webinar with Dr. Ben Carson this morning. The call was to discuss Federal actions being taken during the COVID-19 pandemic from his perspective as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. There are a couple of things I’ll mention about the call later, but more importantly, first, why I hold him in such high esteem. He is a man I have admired since reading his book, a bestseller, Gifted Hands. If you haven’t had an opportunity to read it, please do! Ben teaches valuable life lessons from his life experiences.

Ben overcame poverty and changed from being the class dummy to being respected for his intelligence. He was raised poor by a single mother who had married at 13, held a third-grade education, and came from “horrible family life.” Ben had a temper, had a tendency toward violence, and had poor self-esteem. All the things you would think could prevent him from success of any kind.

He proudly proclaims his mother is the reason for his success. She always believed in him, wouldn’t accept and excuse, and dreamt that making her children read would free them from poverty. Ben says that when you aren’t allowed to give an excuse, you find solutions.  In his reading (BTW his mother couldn’t read), he learned how to drift into a new world, one he wasn’t familiar with, one Ben knew he could enjoy. Through reading, he realized that your success in life comes from your actions and that you control your destiny. That if you thought you were dumb, you are, yet if you thought you were smart, you would act the part and become that too. Your brain is smart enough to make a difference.

He believes that we need to engage in respectful discourse, yet political correctness keeps us from saying what we feel, so speak from your heart. That we all came here on different boats, but we are on the same one now and need to work together. That the leaders who designed our system of government did so for a well informed and educated populace. When we become less informed, we become vulnerable. He recites that his role model is Jesus, who taught in parables, Ben likes doing so as well when he can. Ben suggests that our nation’s symbol, the Bald Eagle, flies high because it has two wings, a right-wing and a left-wing which we need to remember. And that we need to be compassionate to others in need, as we well could have been in similar situations by simple life choices.

What caught my attention on our call were these: First- he said that as a neurosurgeon, he was humbled how families untied around the children he operated on and that he sees us uniting as a country during the pandemic in a similar way. And that from his belief in the bible, phases of life do not last forever, suggesting this to will pass.

Jaren

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Did we move into a new era in record time without knowing?

Over the centuries, the past shows us many periods in world history. I’m not sure that the individuals of these times knew the significance of change as it occurred over the years during their lifetime. Did the people see themselves moving from the bronze age to the iron age, or from the age of revolution to the romantic era? Have you noticed that parents don’t see changes in their children as they grow as we do who don’t see them as often? When we are part of a change, it is hardly noticeable as the gradual movement is scarcely perceptible. What are your thoughts when you look at old pictures to then realized the significant life changes you have forgotten about?

The industrial revolution came about with advancements in communication (telegraph-telephone) and transportation (canals-railroads). It was a time where the population had grown, and there was a need for more creation of food and products. It was gradual but necessary to meet the demands of the growing population. Our time is no different! The world population continues to grow, communication has evolved a remarkable pace, and it is nearly impossible to imagine the changes in delivery coming.

I’ll agree that during this pandemic, we have lost track of time, lost sanity, and every morning we seem to wake up to groundhog day! What is hidden from our view is that these last eight weeks are like no other in history. We are living in the first-ever worldwide economic freeze, highly accessible media rage, and an unfolding tragedy yet to be understood. However, in these last few weeks, we have ushered in a new era in record time, and we are yet to see the powerful changes that are here to stay.

The pandemic has demonstrated we have access digitally to more information than we ever knew possible. While the temporary new normal has shifted our minds from the dramatic nature of the change, yet we are now in it full throttle. It isn’t typical employees doing typical work; it is the recognition that through human advancements, we can achieve more today than at any other time. We are on record pace to achieving those never before answers to questions we may have never thought we were capable of asking.

It isn’t merely connectivity, which by itself is remarkable. It is how quickly we can discover, alter, and create. Automakers shifted to medical device manufacturers in weeks with new innovative ideas improving the product. Science at record pace found new solutions never before thought possible.  And human interaction will be forever changed in ways we are yet to understand. You will be able to add to the list of ways you’ve seen adaption to needs for you.

Leadership will be your new opportunity to stand up and make a difference. Positive change is here for those who are willing.

Jaren

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