Fear of Freedom

Many things speak to us. Nature. Music. A glance. Words. Art. While searching the web for art reproductions, I came across this piece, titled, Fear of Freedom, by photographer and surrealist artist, Jordi Elias. I found it very provoking Look at it. The person under the boat is hanging on for dear life, but his actions are not going to save him. Are you caught under a boat? Are you afraid of freedom? Are you holding on to something that will ultimately be your demise? What will it take to get free?   Prints of this painting are available from the following sources: http://www.allposters.com/-sp/Fear-of-Freedom-Posters_i8651871_.htm http://www.art.com/products/p12818089875-sa-i6401691/jordi-elias-fear-of-freedom.htm?sorig=cat&sorigid=0&dimvals=0&ui=984e8a61a0984082a55674e7abcf323c&searchstring=fear+of+freedom&ssk=fear+of+freedom&sby=all http://www.illustrationworks.com/index.php...

Bye Bye Consumer Debt Aug23

Bye Bye Consumer Debt...

This is a significant week for me because I paid off my last credit card! The debt was not from spending sprees, expensive electronics or a new car. In fact, I drive a 23-year-old car that I bought new and plan to drive for 300,000 miles. The debt was from emergencies, like dental work, mission trips that went over budget, and life. It was also from new windows and buying things that seemed like a good deal on sale. I think I have had some sort of consumer debt for more than 20 years. Now I say, Adios! Au revoir! さようなら and до свидания and Arrivederci! As the bible says, the borrower is slave to the lender (Proverbs 22:7). I certainly feel more free than I did a week ago! So how did I do it? I listened to Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. The course if offered thousands of times across the US every year and is available online. I borrowed the CDs from my niece who took it. I got serious about getting out of debt. Ramsey calls this, “gazelle intensity.” A gazelle being chased by a predator runs for its life—as fast as it can to get away from the problem. Until I realized how important it was to clean up the mess, I lacked the motivation to do it. I followed up by listening to Ramsey as often as possible, on the radio while driving, and to his podcasts. An addict needs constant encouragement to do the right thing. I was addicted to debt and needed help. I followed Ramsey’s advice to save up $1,000 in an emergency fund. Now when I need dental work or car repairs, there is some money there and I don’t have to reach for...

Family Ties

Poet and humanitarian Mya Angelou said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” 

Be Positive!

“Be positive regardless! Life is sweet!” Those are the words inscribed in the front of Watermelon Credo, a little book given to me by the author, Wally Amos. Most people know him as the cookie man who invented Famous Amos Cookies. I ran into Wally Amos as he was selling his newest “Wamos” cookies in front of a hotel on Waikiki in Hawaii. I’d hoped to interview him for my upcoming podcast, but he was unable to make the appointment. So we chatted. I found Wally to be a delightful man who never gives up. Though in his 70s, he refuses to quit life. Instead he continues to start companies, write books, and speak to groups. Somewhere along the way he founded a group called Read it LOUD!, a foundation that encourages parents to read aloud to their children everyday. He knows that reading is a key to success. Wally has had his ups and downs. From humble beginnings, he served in the military, and then became an entrepreneur. He didn’t wait for anyone to give him anything; he knew he had the power and the responsibility to create his own destiny. Wally was very public about the mistakes he made that led to loosing control of his Famous Amos Cookie Company. “I made the mistake of thinking the company was all about me and never realized that I could be part of the problems that befell it,” he wrote. “Now I subscribe to the TEAM adage, that Together Everyone Accomplishes More.” In his little book, Watermelon Credo, Wally (who loves the fruit and wears his signature watermelon hat), shares 10 principles for a successful life: Whatever you believe creates your reality Attitude is the magic word Together everyone achieves more Enthusiasm is the...

Crushing Debt: The Ramsey Method Aug06

Crushing Debt: The Ramsey Method...

Dave Ramsey is a very successful financial coach, author, teacher and radio host. He made money in real estate and went broke twice. Then he figured out what went wrong, learned from his mistakes, and set out to help others. I have listened to Ramsey’s Financial Peace University lessons as well as his radio show regularly. He has made a tremendous difference in my life, helping me solve my personal financial issues. Dave’s plan is quite simple. But like most choices in life, it takes willpower, commitment and what he calls gazelle intensity. (Think how fast a gazelle runs for its life when it’s being chased by a predator; people in debt should run like hell for their lives with the same intensity. He preaches the need to get on a written budget, then only spend money that has been pre-allocated. I’m still working on this one! To get out of debt, Ramsey teaches what he calls baby steps. I am implementing them and seeing a HUGE difference in my financial health. 1. Set up an emergency fund of $1,000. This is for dental visits, flat tires and all those things that WILL happen as part of life. You have to plan for them. 2. Pay off all debt using the debt snowball. To do this you start making minimum payments on all your debts except the smallest one. Then you attack that smallest debt by throwing every dollar you can at it, increasing your income through extra jobs and selling stuff. (You pay off all debts in this way, starting with the smallest, then going to the next one and the next one.) You DON’T start with the highest interest, rather the smallest balance. As Dave Ramsey says, this is an emotional issue;...

Reasons Resumes are Rejected Aug02

Reasons Resumes are Rejected

Are you looking for work? Not getting responses to your resumes? Statistics show that most jobs are obtained through interpersonal contacts. Your chances of finding a job by posting your resume online is almost nil. However, if you are being faithful to work through your networks (friends, family, colleagues, etc) you still need to have an effective resume. Here are problems you should...