Category Archives: Learn

Motivation: Idea Generation!


Yesterday we took the time to ask ourselves what we’ve gotten used to in our lives. Today, let’s do some brainstorming regarding what we can do about this.

A reminder: we’re brainstorming so that means all ideas are worthy of being jotted down and considered.

This means:

~NO judging

~NO dismissing

~NO blowing off

~NO pooh-pooh-ing

~NO disparagement of any kind


of ANY idea, no matter how crazy or outlandish it is.


Also, do NOT:

~worry about the practicality

~fret about the money involved

~angst over how much time an idea might take to work out

~lament over the very few ideas you’ve come up with

~freak out over how may ideas you’ve come up with

~despair over the illogical ideas your brain produces for you

~feel like an idiot because of any idea that your creativity has gifted to you


We may find that a piece of one nutty idea combined with a piece of an outrageous forms a blockbuster action that move us forward faster and better than any rational or logical idea we’ve come up with so far!

Take the time today to write down as many ideas as you can. Don’t worry about the number of them, just write down all that come to you in the time you’ve allotted–I recommend 15-20 minutes of quiet uninterrupted time, perfect to do during your lunch hour (just sayin’!). Keep a notepad and pen, or other device handy, so you can jot down ideas that come to you during the day–trust me, they will!

Tomorrow we’ll talk about these. Be sure to make time in your schedule for 15 – 20 minutes of quiet uninterrupted time.

WooHoo! This is GREAT stuff!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,



Back by Popular Demand: Sitting in Silence and Self-Care

This post was originally published on October 21. 2016.  It’s a popular post that people refer to often.  I thought it was quite relevant to the discussion we had yesterday about caring for yourself and not worrying about forgiving the difficult person.

Please enjoy this post.  I hope it helps you take the next step!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren   🙂

Here’s another benefit of sitting in silence: it helps you clarify you’re thinking.

Not only does it help you hear and feel the Still Small Voice within—or the whisperings and urgings of your heart and soul, if you will—but the results of a practice of Silence will help you discern the difference between that which is yours to address versus what belongs to other people.

Once you’re able to clarify your thinking then you’ve taken a huge step toward self-forgiveness.

It’s one thing to recognize you’ve fallen short of your ideal and that you need to make amends and corrections. It’s a whole different thing to take the blame for something someone else has done (or not done) or for something that was beyond your control.

Taking the blame when it isn’t yours leads to unresolved and unchecked guilt which oftentimes then turns into shame. These are devastating. 

They’ll cause you to lead a life that’s far, far below your potential. To compound this, you probably won’t fulfill your Destiny.

Copyright 2015 Artisans Workshop Designs
Copyright 2015 Artisans Workshop Designs

If you don’t have a daily practice of Sitting in Silence even for a few minutes—it could be as little as 5 minutes because it does add up over time—then I urge you to begin one today. Ideally, sit for 15 to 20 minutes first thing in the morning and the last thing before you go to bed. But if that’s too overwhelming, then start with 15 minutes in the morning, the very first thing in the morning. It’s a great way to start your day!

You can do it! 

Your Friend and Pep Pal,


Back by Popular Demand: You’ve Failed? Congratulations!



Bad choices, mistakes, and plain old stupidity.  Nobody wants to acknowledge these, much less talk about them.  People want to hear success stories, find the keys to success, and learn the 3 steps or 7 steps or 12 steps–or however many steps are in vogue at this moment–to success.  The media and our culture glorify it, making us feel envious and less-than, which Madison Avenue loves because then they can sell us something to “solve” it.

However, failure is one of the most important things you can do, as long as you don’t let it defeat you and as long as you don’t quit!

In spite of how discouraged–or ridiculous or stupid–you may feel and no matter how hard it is, take the next step!

Moving forward, even if it’s only by an infinitesimally small increment, is the only way to get through (around, under, or over) what seems like failure and defeat.  In reality, it’s a stepping-stone to a breakthrough for you.

So, in the words of Winston Churchill, “When you’re going through hell, keep going!”  

Here are a few other quotes that might inspire and motivate you:

Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.

– Truman Capote

Being defeated is only a temporary condition; giving up is what makes it permanent.

– Marilyn vos Savant,

Fall down seven times, get up eight.

- Japanese Proverb

I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.

– Michael Jordan


Jot down any of the quotes that resonated with you and keep them handy so you can refer to them often.  I’m so proud of you for not giving in, for finding the steel and the fire within, and for moving forward.  

Your Friend and Pep Pal,


Thoughts on Reading from Earl Nightingale


Here’s a wonderful essay from Earl Nightingale (who would have been 96 tomorrow) on the importance of reading.  Enjoy!

How are you coming with your home library? Do you need some good ammunition on why it’s so important to read? The last time I checked the statistics…I think they indicated that only four percent of the adults in this country have bought a book within the past year. That’s dangerous. It’s extremely important that we keep ourselves in the top five or six percent.

In one of the Monthly Letters from the Royal Bank of Canada it was pointed out that reading good books is not something to be indulged in as a luxury. It is a necessity for anyone who intends to give his life and work a touch of quality. The most real wealth is not what we put into our piggy banks but what we develop in our heads. Books instruct us without anger, threats and harsh discipline. They do not sneer at our ignorance or grumble at our mistakes. They ask only that we spend some time in the company of greatness so that we may absorb some of its attributes.

You do not read a book for the book’s sake, but for your own.

You may read because in your high-pressure life, studded with problems and emergencies, you need periods of relief and yet recognize that peace of mind does not mean numbness of mind.

You may read because you never had an opportunity to go to college, and books give you a chance to get something you missed. You may read because your job is routine, and books give you a feeling of depth in life.

You may read because you did go to college.

You may read because you see social, economic and philosophical problems which need solution, and you believe that the best thinking of all past ages may be useful in your age, too.

You may read because you are tired of the shallowness of contemporary life, bored by the current conversational commonplaces, and wearied of shop talk and gossip about people.

Whatever your dominant personal reason, you will find that reading gives knowledge, creative power, satisfaction and relaxation. It cultivates your mind by calling its faculties into exercise.

Books are a source of pleasure – the purest and the most lasting. They enhance your sensation of the interestingness of life. Reading them is not a violent pleasure like the gross enjoyment of an uncultivated mind, but a subtle delight.

Reading dispels prejudices which hem our minds within narrow spaces. One of the things that will surprise you as you read good books from all over the world and from all times of man is that human nature is much the same today as it has been ever since writing began to tell us about it.

Some people act as if it were demeaning to their manhood to wish to be well-read but you can no more be a healthy person mentally without reading substantial books than you can be a vigorous person physically without eating solid food. Books should be chosen, not for their freedom from evil, but for their possession of good. Dr. Johnson said: “Whilst you stand deliberating which book your son shall read first, another boy has read both.”
― Earl Nightingale


Make time in your week to read.  You’ll be glad you did!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,


Year End Reflections: It’s Okay to Feel Down Part 3– Old Faithful


There are many people who feel left out, overlooked, or forgotten this time of year.  No wonder those around us can feel down and out of sorts.

If this describes you, a reliable way to pull yourself out of the doldrums is to volunteer.

Here are a few suggestions:

~stop by a nursing home and read a short holiday story or poem to the residents–or just sit with someone who usually has no visitors;
~visit an elderly neighbor who can’t get around like they used to;
~help a local organization gather gifts and food for people of very limited means;
~deliver holiday meals to shut-ins;
~offer to babysit for a friend’s kids so your friend and his/her spouse can enjoy a quiet holiday date night;
~volunteer to run errands for a single parent friend.

Let me know which one of these suggestions worked best for you.  Let me know, too, if you came up with others not mentioned here.  Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Quotes: In Case Fear is Stopping You


Here are a few quotes that I hope will help you when you’re feeling uncertain or afraid.


Do not let your fears choose your destiny. ~Unknown

Fear is a liar. Your fears make you feel that you don’t have what it takes, you can’t achieve your dreams, it’s too hard, you aren’t good enough.  If you listen to your fears then you’ll aim at and settle for a much smaller life than what you could have had.  We are capable of far more than we think we are and we each have a Destiny that’s richer, deeper, wider, juicier than what we can imagine right now.


Fear is never a reason for quitting; it’s only an excuse. ~Norman Vincent Peale

Some fears are legitimate and you are correct in pausing and thinking them through. For instance when you’re preparing to parachute out of an airplane, the butterflies in your stomach (a form of fear) are a great reminder to double-check your equipment as well as to go through in your mind the proper procedure for parachuting out of a plane.

Once you’ve done your safety check on the equipment as well as reviewing the proper parachuting procedures, you don’t let your butterflies stop you–you still jump out of the plane!

It’s the same when you’re working toward your dreams. There will be times when you’ll be worried, anxious, and fearful.  Pause a moment to assess them and, if needed, take steps to correct or alter what needs it, and then proceed forward.  Also, when you’re feeling worried, anxious, and fearful, it’s helpful to remember that it’s okay to go as slowly and as carefully as you need to–you don’t have to barrel ahead with a full head of steam!


Thinking will not overcome fear but action will. ~W. Clement Stone

It’s one thing to assess your fear in order to understand what’s driving it. It’s usually a weakness and once you identify that, you can take appropriate steps to strengthen it.

It’s a whole different story if your thinking turns into brooding and fretting and worrying over your fear. That kind of thinking will stop you dead in your tracks.  It does not lead to taking positive, constructive action toward your dreams.  Instead, keep your focus on what you can do–actions you can take–to help yourself through the fear.

Then take the next step!


I hope these help you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,



A Few Additional Resources for You

Copyright 2014 Artisans Workshop Designs
Copyright 2014 Artisans Workshop Designs


This post is a continuation of last week’s post on resources. This post adds to that list.

Of course I invite you to continue following my blog and as well as to “follow” me on Twitter and “like” my Facebook page…but I’m not the only one talking about self-actualization. Who knew?! (Ha!)

Below are a few other places to check out:

Your local library!!
It’s amazing the products and services they offer. The good news is that there are many resources that, with a valid library card, you have FREE access to!! The other great thing about your local library is that they are VERY interested in serving the needs of ALL the members of the community so let them know the resources they have that you like as well as the ones you wish they had. Keeping in touch with them will assist them in continuing to be a relevant information source for your community. Check them out today! And get a library card if you don’t already have one–they’re FREE!!!

Community colleges, universities, and local branches of universities
Of course they offer classes and, naturally, communities of curious people studying variety of subjects that fascinate them. In addition, they offer faculty lectures as well as lectures, discussions, symposiums, conventions, etc., of visiting professors and thought leaders. Also, many offer low-residency programs as well as distance learning programs.

Lifetime Learners
For a partial listing of participating organizations in OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Institute).  Many universities and community colleges and communities are affiliated with this program. There’s probably a place near where you live!

Continuing Education and Adult Learning Programs offered by your local community
My town offers programs for kids and adults sponsored by the Parks and Recreation Department. Of course they offer sporting programs, but they also offer introduction to Italian and conversational French; cooking; arts and crafts; many types of dance; trips to local museums, professional sporting events, shopping excursions; classes in meditation; how-to invest your money, and more.

Senior Centers, Ethnic organizations, Civic groups
Communities of people who have no intention of getting ready for the rocking chair on the porch of the “old age home”!
Your Place of Worship
Although many houses of worship are concerned with attracting young people, they are also very interested in being relevant and helpful to all their parishioners. They’re also a good source of information for other offerings in your local area.

Of course there is the ever-present Internet. I certainly recommend you do searches on the specific information you’re looking for as well as doing searches on topics that interest and fascinate you. Also check out and as well.

Okey dokey!

Checking out these resources ought to keep you busy! If you know of other resources, or come across ones you think can be helpful to us, please let us know in the comments section below. Thanks!

Also, please pass this post along to a friend who you think can be helped by it. Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Self-Actualization and Goals: The Intangible Ones – Part 3


Today’s post continues on from Friday’s post.

Briefly, to refresh your memory, self-actualization is all about being who you truly are–manifesting YOUR talents, skills, and abilities in service of YOUR destiny, which is the reason why you were born on Earth.

Self-actualization is about feelings; not emotions, necessarily, but rather feelings of ecstasy, joy, fulfillment, gratification, reverence, and the like.

It’s about feeling happy but yet it’s so much deeper, fuller, and richer than that.

Below are a few questions to ask yourself. These are designed to familiarize yourself with your feelings of happiness–exactly what it feels like for YOU–and where in your body you feel happiness. Answering these questions, along with the answers from Friday’s post’s questions, will help you home in on your version of happiness.

What does it feel like when you’re happy?

Perhaps you get a soft, cuddly feeling in your chest when you’re happy, or maybe your whole body feels light enough to float away on the softest of breezes. Perhaps your head feels clear when you’re happy and it’s when you can do your sharpest, most incisive thinking.

Where do you feel it in your body?

Does your head get a fizzy, effervescent feeling? Do your arms, legs, fingers, and toes get all tingly when you’re happy? Do you feel a blooming and opening up of your chest when you feel happy? Get specific with where you feel happiness and your description of that feeling.

What thoughts are you thinking when you’re happy; what are you saying to yourself when you are happy?

Are you saying things like “I’ve got the world by the tail!” or “I can do anything!” or “I’m on fire!” or “Wow!” or “I love how this feels!”

What are the specific shadings of “happy” that you’re feeling?

Here are a few adjectives to help you describe what you’re feeling: elated, ecstatic, empowered, strong, vibrant, powerful, mighty, triumphant, unbeatable. Get out your trusty Thesaurus (or use the online one ) to find the exact adjectives that pinpoint your feelings.

What tasks are you doing when you’re happy?

Are you working with your hands or building something? Are you being creative in an artistic sense? Are you problem-solving? Are you using your brain power?

What do you do to show you are happy?

Do you smile; are you cheerful? Are you more gregarious and out-going or do you prefer to sit quietly and bask in the glow of your feelings? Does your happiness energize you to keep going or do more?


Take the time to answer these questions. Let them inspire other questions–or other shadings of these same questions–so that you can pinpoint your unique definition and personal meaning of “being happy”.

Remember: don’t be surprised or feel awkward that your definition is nothing like anyone else’s, and what you feel and where you feel it when you’re happy is also particular to you. It’s supposed to be that way!! You won’t be happy following someone else’s idea of happiness. You want your happiness to be tailor-made to YOU!

In Part 4, we’ll talk about how to apply traditional goal-setting techniques to our intangible goals.

If you have any questions or thoughts, feel free to share them in the comments below. Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Self-Actualization: One Person’s Journey


I came across this essay where the author is talking about her journey into her True Self–self-actualization. I wanted to share it with you because I want you to see how following your Inner Guidance, to people on the outside looking in, it looks crazy.  What you want to do doesn’t make sense to others.

As you see in the article, the author followed her instincts anyway and it was one of the best, most empowering phases of her life. Of course she had struggles and setbacks along the way, but the insights and connecting with her True Self and knowing she could trust it and rely on it were much more valuable than any price she had to pay.

Here’s the link again to the article. Let me know what you think in the comments below.  Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,


Self-Actualization: What Is It?


Before beginning a journey, it’s a good habit to have an idea of where you’re headed. We’re starting a journey of self-actualization and the following quotes give some insight into what it is, what we’re aiming for.

Read the quotes, think about them. Which ones did you like, which ones didn’t make sense?  What are your thoughts about self actualization?  Let me know in the comments section below!


The good life is a process, not a state of being. It is a direction not a destination.  Carl Rogers

The person in peak-experiences feels himself, more than other times, to be the responsible, active, creating center of his activities and of his perceptions. He feels more like a prime-mover, more self-determined (rather than caused, determined, helpless, dependent, passive, weak, bossed). He feels himself to be his own boss, fully responsible, fully volitional, with more “free-will” than at other times, master of his fate, an agent. ~Abraham Maslow

Instead of dedicating your life to actualize a concept of what you should be like, ACTUALIZE YOURSELF. Many people dedicate their lives to actualizing a concept of what they should be like, rather than actualizing themselves. This difference between self-actualization and self-image actualization is very important. Most people live only for their image.  ~Bruce Lee

It is easy to live for others, everybody does. I call on you to live for yourself.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Self-actualization cannot be attained if it is made an end in itself, but only as a side effect of self-transcendence.  ~Viktor E. Frankl

Every living organism is fulfilled when it follows the right path for its own nature. ― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations


I hope these quotes got you to thinking…!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,