Archive for November, 2009

Breast Cancer Awareness Camaraderie

November 23, 2009

The employees at the Providence St. Vincent Hospital in Portland Oregon got together and made the “Pink Glove Dance Video” to promote breast cancer awareness.  It’s heartwarming and affirming – Please take 3 minutes out of your day to watch! When you are done, go to where you can click to give a woman a free mammogram – it costs you nothing!



Are You Passionate About Your Job?

November 19, 2009

Are You Passionate About Your Job?

It’s easy to sustain passion about your job.  At least it is for me.  Being an Executive Administrative Assistant running, literally running, from task to task and completing each with excellence, provides me with a deep sense of satisfaction and feeds my passion.

You see, I thoroughly enjoy my position as it regularly presents multiple challenges, ever-changing needs, and constant shifts in priorities; all within a spiraling and fast-paced environment.  It fuels, motivates, and provides me with the daily satisfaction I need to eagerly face whatever tomorrow will bring.  Not knowing what that might be or morph into is half the fun!

I make a daily list of what needs to get done and I absolutely love to check off each item when it’s complete.  A little piece of satisfaction is doled out each time I cross off an item.

Providing my boss with what he needs even before he knows he needs it fuels my passion.  Making sure I keep him on track and he accomplishes what he set out to accomplish fuels my passion.  Knowing he has complete confidence that I will take care of his every need with disciplined professionalism fuels my passion.

It fuels my passion to know that my co-workers know I will assist them as needed and even help them out of a bind with a smile.  Saving time and money for the company fuels my passion.  Who wouldn’t think that making a contribution on a daily basis wouldn’t be a great thing?

Taking care of a busy executive is what I wanted to do even as a young girl.  It’s what my sister and I role-played instead of playing with dolls.  We pretended to solve problems, we pretended to talk with customers, and kept actual files of all our pretend activities.  It fueled our passion for customer service way back then.

It’s who I am, what I love to do, do well, and it’s truly what I am passionate about!

The Power of Kindness

November 11, 2009


Voted Best Spiritual Book of 2007 by S & P

Book Review
By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat

The Power of Kindness

The Unexpected Benefits of Leading a Compassionate Life
Piero Ferrucci
Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin 10/07 Paperback $12.00
ISBN: 9781585425884

Piero Ferrucci is a psychotherapist and philosopher who was a student and collaborator with Roberto Assagioli, the founder of psychosynthesis. In this polished and pensive tome, he says that we are going through “an Ice Age of the Heart” where people are often chilly and indifferent to each other. The reliance on technology, such as cell phones and email, to keep in touch with others instead of face-to-face encounters is a sign of this “global cooling.” The single-minded pursuit of money and power knocks aside the values that have animated religions for years. Kindness is the one trait that can save us. He quotes the Dalai Lama:

“I believe that if we stop to think, it is clear that our very survival, even today, depends upon the acts and kindness of so many people. Right from the moment of our birth, we are under the care and kindness of our parents; later in life, when facing the sufferings of disease and old age, we are again dependent on the kindness of others.”

Ferrucci notes that being kind is a way of life that can bring happiness to others as well as to those who practice it:

“To receive kindness does us good. Think of a time someone has been kind to you, in a big or a small way: A passerby gave your directions to reach the station or a stranger threw herself in a river to save you from drowning. What effect did it have on you? Probably a beneficial one, because if someone helps us when we need it, we feel relief. And everyone likes to be heard, treated with warmth and friendliness, understood, and nourished.

“Something similar happens on the other side of the equation: Giving kindness does us as much good as receiving it. . . .  The true benefit of kindness is being kind. Perhaps more than any other factor, kindness gives meaning and value to our life, raises us above our troubles and our battles, and makes us feel good about ourselves.”

Ferrucci distinguishes this virtue from self-interested politeness, calculated generosity, superficial etiquette, and kindness against one’s will. In eighteen well-designed and thought-out chapters, he presents various facets of this quality including honesty, forgiveness, mindfulness, empathy, generosity, gratitude, service and joy. Along the way, he offers many insights into human nature and some practice suggestions. Here is one of them:

“Try this experiment. Start with an ordinary situation such as riding in a taxi, buying paper at a stationary shop, or sitting in the train. Then try exchanging a few words with the taxi driver, making eye contact with the salesperson, striking up a conversation with someone on the train. For some of us, that happens spontaneously; others have to do it deliberately. Be fully present in this brief contact, and expect the other to be so as well. Suddenly a change occurs: Something becomes unblocked and energy circulates. It might not be an encounter of two souls. But it surely will be an exchange of vital energy between two people.”

This paperback is a rich and rounded resource that explores the multidimensional powers of kindness as a character trait that can do wonders for civilization if it is practiced by more people every day.

The following is a quote that I sent to myself to remember to look the book up – it is with regret I do not remember the author:

The Power of Kindness: The Unexpected Benefits of Leading a Compassionate Life” by Piero Ferrucci is a gentle reminder of how kindness comes and can be given in many forms. Separate chapters are devoted to honesty, warmth, forgiveness, contact, sense of belonging, trust, mindfulness, empathy, humility, patience, generosity, respect, flexibility, memory, loyalty, gratitude, service, and joy. An example he gives is a photographer who goes to an orphanage to take pictures of the children because a fine photograph makes adoption more likely.
The author, a follower of Roberto Assagioli, who developed psychosynthesis, believes “Kindness and the goodwill of many is a resource, an energy on par with oil, water, wind, nuclear, and solar energy. It would be immensely useful (this is already happening) to pay more attention to it, find ways of evoking it, and harnessing it, organize training courses for it, teach it in schools, publicize it, use it in ads, turn it into a fashion.”

I wholeheartedly agree!  Don’t you?  Then pay some kindness forward today.  Let’s start a trend.



November 9, 2009

A must see video starring TJ Thyne wherein we are shown the overpowering importance of a smile and how we all need to be validated.
Have you ever walked down the street and smiled at a stranger? Did they smile back? Did they look away? Did they look happy or sad? How did either of these actions make you feel?
I always try to smile rather than frown. According to Google, it takes 33 facial muscles to frown and 13 facial muscles to smile which should equate to less wrinkles as we age. That factor notwithstanding, I choose to smile rather than frown even in the face of true adversity. That’s not to say that I don’t have my sad moments. But, I don’t let those moments take me over and neither should you!
So watch this video and remember you have the power to validate someone – to make them smile and make them feel good about themselves. You can even do this for yourself. To smile or not to smile is a choice. Choose wisely!

A Call To Action – You Are Needed Now!

November 9, 2009

I read a story today at Career Rocketeer that you’ll want to read as well. It’s a call to action, whether you’re fully employed, unemployed or know of someone who is unemployed. You’re needed.

Here’s the story…

It’s a story of Kim and Frank. Kim is a pastor at a local church. Frank is one of Kim’s patrons who had been attending Kim’s church for 65 years.

Frank was one of the faithful who attended church almost every Sunday. Just like clockwork, Frank would attend the 9:30 service and sit in the same spot… eight rows back right on the aisle.

For the first fifty years, Frank sat in his spot with his wife, Carol, beside him. Kim could count on looking up and seeing Frank and his wife every Sunday in their spot.

After Carol’s death, Frank continued to come to church and sit in his same spot, eight rows back right on the aisle. Sometimes he was there by himself. Sometimes he was there with his son or daughter. Always, he was there.

Then out of the blue, Kim noticed Frank wasn’t at church on a particular Sunday. Kim didn’t think much of it until the next week when Frank wasn’t there again. In fact, six months went by without Kim seeing Frank in his usual spot, eight rows back right on the aisle.

Kim didn’t know why. Did he go on an extended vacation? Did he change churches? Did he move? Did Frank unexpectedly die and nobody told him?

Finally, curiosity got the best of Kim. He didn’t know Frank’s telephone number, so Kim decided to drive by Frank’s house. He saw the house was mostly dark, but there was a light on in the back of the house.

Kim rang the doorbell, and Frank answered. Frank explained he and his family were struggling both financially and with their health. That’s why he hadn’t been attending church.

Kim asked how he could help Frank. Frank said that the hardships over the past six months had been some of the most difficult of his life. However, as difficult as that was, the most painful thing was that nobody from the church bothered to stop by and check in on him during the past six months. He’s been forgotten, and that was very painful.

As Kim heard this, tears streamed his cheeks (and Frank’s too). Kim realized he failed in his job as a friend.

There are many people in the working world today who have faithfully attended their job for years and years, only to find themselves in the loneliness of the unemployed.

If you know of someone who is unemployed, reach out to them. Take them out to lunch. Treat them to a coffee at Starbucks. Let them know you’re thinking about them in their time of need. Make sure they know that even though they are unemployed, they are still important in your life. Just a small amount of your time will mean tons to them.

And if you’re unemployed, make sure you take the time to reach out to others. If nobody is reaching out to you, reach out to them, no matter how awkward it feels. This is the time for your support group to come through and be there for you.

Don’t wait six months. Don’t wait another day. Do it now!!