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My Favourite 5 Posts Of 2013 – #1 “Stop, Look and Listen”

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Just before Christmas last year we found out that our wonderful dog Chase had terminal cancer and only had a few weeks to live. Although we were quite upset, he had come through major health issues the previous year so we were not surprised. My wife and I agreed to keep him as long as he was doing fine, and as soon as he showed signs of a drop off, we would put him down.

I tried to play the “he’s just a dog card”, but that did not work. It was a very difficult time when he took a turn for the worst. We scheduled an appointment at the vet the next day. The following afternoon, my whole family was out, so I had a chance to sit with him on our deck.

It was an abnormally mild January day for Northern Alberta, which allowed him one last chance to hang out in the yard that he loved so much. He was not able to chase the squirrels like had had done hundreds of times before, but he was able to lie there as I stayed close.

As I sat with him and shut off the world around me, I stopped everything that I was doing, looked around at the place that he had called home for so many years, and just listened to all the sounds around us. I had not been in that relaxed a state for what seemed like months, and was able to fully disengage from the hustle and bustle of life to be in the moment with him. I became so relaxed that I actually fell asleep with him on the deck for one of the last hours of his life!

I reflected upon this event a few weeks after he had passed, and thought fondly about our time together in the yard taking it all in. We get so wrapped up getting through the day that we don’t take enough time to stop, look and listen. I can’t remember the last time I just sat with Chase in the back yard and hung out. There were always other things happening that seemed more important than just being with him.

Perhaps you may want to:

  • Cut back on your workload to spend more time with family, friends and even pets
  • Reduce your outside commitments so you can have some “me time”
  • Take up a hobby again that you have been unable to keep up with because life got in the way
  • Connect with people that you have not corresponded with in a long time

and…

Stop, look and listen
to everything around you. Take a breath and be thankful for everyone that you hold dear, and focus more on them. You never know how long they will be around for!

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Do You Need A “Super Happy Fun Day?”

I have enjoyed the work of Dean Jackson and John Reese from the internet marketing space for close to three years now. I needed a kick in the butt a couple of weeks ago, so I replayed one of my favourite audio interviews from John Reese and Tony Robbins.

Hang on… I am not going to go in to a long-winded technically explanation of internet marketing theory. Rather, I want to tell you about an incredible concept called “Super Happy Fun Days”.

John and Tony started to speak about this on the audio interview, and Tony wanted all the details. Dean Jackson created the concept, and John Reese would take part in these events when possible. They are good friends. The “rules” are as follows (to the best of my memory):

  • The event was at least 9 hours long
  • Two major activities had to be completed (ie a golf game and/or a movie were typically included)
  • Two meals had to be consumed
  • Other fun activities were completed (to fill in the extra time)

I can “hear the comments” now coming off the page as your read this. Everyone is busy, running  like chicken’s with their head’s cut off. 9 hours of fun is impossible!

It is if you want it to be!

  • How often could you pencil in “Super Happy Fun Days” throughout the year?
  • If nine-hour blocks of time were not always possible, how much time could you commit to?
  • When you look back on your life, will look fondly remember all the work that you did, or the fun, kinship and laughter that you had along the way?

Always remember, if you don’t block off time to do these activities, they won’t get done. Treat them like a business meeting in your calendar. You wouldn’t skip those right 🙂

Stop, Look and Listen… The Follow Up!

I am still smiling from ear to ear after the great response I received last Thursday from the “Stop, Look and Listen” post! Thanks to everyone who took the time to read it, and a special shout out to those who took the time to comment. In case you missed it, here it is again:

http://bit.ly/12O7zda

I have been “practicing what I have been preaching” on a couple of items and wanted to give you an update:

I recently reached out to an old colleague that I have not spoken to in many years. Our relationship was a little choppy to say the least for a long time and we happily stayed “out of touch” as our careers continued with different organizations. They were happy to re-connect via social media, and vowed to stay in touch going forward.

I also had a face-to-face meeting with an old friend when he visited my city recently. We had not really hung out for the better part of ten years, and it was awesome to see each other again! We were the best of friends in university and stirred up the occasional bit of trouble, so it was nice to sit down and chat. We picked up right where we had left off which is what I expected to happen!

For the above situations, so much time had passed, I was not even sure why we “broke up” in the first place. It is all water under the bridge now. Time to move on.

A third story has been on my mind a lot since last Thursday. I became quite close with a customer of mine many years ago early in my career. We had a lot in common, and loved to talk about hockey every time I visited his store. If memory serves me correctly, we stayed in touch for a bit after I started a new role, but we finally drifted apart and never communicated again.

As my mind drifted during work last week, I finally decided that it was time to take action and reach out to him again after all these years. Within an hour of making that commitment to contact him, I received a very disturbing email. He had passed away suddenly the night before. I was in absolute shock.

– Is it time to reach out to somebody from your past?
– Is it time to leave the “past in the past” and move forward?
– Is the time to do that TODAY?


Things can change in an instant – unfortunately my third story proves that.

Hope I can motivate all of you to take action!

Have You Stopped, Looked And Listened Lately?

Just before Christmas we found out that our wonderful dog Chase had terminal cancer and only had a few weeks to live. Although we were quite upset, he had come through major health issues the previous year so we were not surprised. My wife and I agreed to keep him as long as he was doing fine, and as soon as he showed signs of a drop off, we would put him down.

I tried to play the “he’s just a dog card”, but that did not work. It was a very difficult time when he took a turn for the worst. We scheduled an appointment at the vet the next day. The following afternoon, my whole family was out, so I had a chance to sit with him on our deck.

It was an abnormally mild January day for Northern Alberta, which allowed him one last chance to hang out in the yard that he loved so much. He was not able to chase the squirrels like had had done hundreds of times before, but he was able to lie there as I stayed close.

As I sat with him and shut off the world around me, I stopped everything that I was doing, looked around at the place that he had called home for so many years, and just listened to all the sounds around us. I had not been in that relaxed a state for what seemed like months, and was able to fully disengage from the hustle and bustle of life to be in the moment with him. I became so relaxed that I actually fell asleep with him on the deck for one of the last hours of his life!

I reflected upon this event a few weeks after he had passed, and thought fondly about our time together in the yard taking it all in. We get so wrapped up getting through the day that we don’t take enough time to stop, look and listen. I can’t remember the last time I just sat with Chase in the back yard and hung out. There were always other things happening that seemed more important than just being with him.

Perhaps you may want to:

– Cut back on your workload to spend more time with family, friends and even pets
– Reduce your outside commitments so you can have some “me time”
– Take up a hobby again that you have been unable to keep up with because life got in the way
– Connect with people that you have not corresponded with in a long time

and…

Stop, look and listen to everything around you. Take a breath and be thankful for everyone that you hold dear, and focus more on them. You never know how long they will be around for!