Archive for the 'Ah-Ha Moments' Category

Aug 13 2011

This One’s for Cousin Emilee

Published by under Ah-Ha Moments

This happened two weekends ago. It was after church and we were having lunch. We usually go around the table and tell how our Sabbath School classes were, but that was over and there was silence as we all munched away – then this happened:

Silence, munch, munch, munch…
Joshua: I read that short people live longer than tall people.
Silence, munch, munch, munch…
Uneasy eying around the table.
Silence, munch, munch, munch…
Hannah: Well, we’re all dead.
Silence, munch, munch, just a little smile from me.

These people crack me up.
Thought of my first cousin once removed and had to share yet another advantage… Rock who you are girl! 😉

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Sep 29 2010

Hoping for Change

Published by under Ah-Ha Moments

No – I’m not reduced to holding a cardboard sign on the street corner.
No – I’m not trying to revive hopeless political slogans (well, except for maybe “I Like Ike.”)

Hoping for Changes is a state of mind. There’s an aphorism (I am quite fond of aphorisms … aphorisi?) known generally as BE – DO – HAVE. What is it that you really want? That’s a good question in itself, but once you get a handle on it what do you have to do to obtain that thing? The deeper question is, what kind of a person do you have to be to do that thing that gets you that thing that you want?

A great example of this is given by a vMentor of mine. By vMentor, I meant ‘virtual Mentor’. I learn from people I’ve never met. You see, they leave these things lying around called books (and now PDF and MP3 files…) that you can learn from… So anyway, this vMentor’s name is Jim Rohn. He expresses this BE – DO – HAVE concept this way. He says that you should decide to become a millionaire. Why? Not for any greedy reason. In fact, if you so choose, once you become the millionaire you can give it all away and become a philanthropist. The point isn’t the money. The point is, what kind of person do you have to be in order to be a millionaire? You have to be a person of action, a person of discipline, you have to be able to get along with and team up with other people, you have to be an achiever and a dreamer. You see? If you become all these things in the march to millionaire-hood, the becoming is the real reward.

Oh before you get all crazy on me (actually go crazy in me, just do it in the comments), you can also marry into money, you can steal money, you can miser your way to a million. However, is that the way you want to do that? What have you become by taking such a road? This just illustrates the point further that it’s the BE’ing that is the key. There’s nothing immoral about being a millionaire, but there are immoral characters that are. In the same way that there are really quality people who have become millionaires.

I think you get the point. And the point wasn’t about becoming a millionaire… right?

I’ve spent a lot of time lately thinking about things I want to DO and HAVE. But I think the more important question is what kind of person do I have to BE to DO and HAVE those things. I tend towards the theoretical. I read books and collect ideas – it’s unlikely that you’d mistake me for a “man of action.”

But there are actions that I can take to push my world of ideas out to others though various channels. This blog post is just one avenue of many. But even that sharing is a step of action. It takes discipline. I think I’ve consistently produced a podcast for 6 weeks. I’ve blogged consistently for 3 or so weeks. I’ve worked on two different books off and on. And as my mom’s pointed out on Facebook, my history of ‘not doing my homework’ is almost legendary.

I’ve spent a decade changing the way I think (2000 – 2010), now I need to get into changing the way I act. So instead of trying for sustained, persistent, focused action. I’m going to start with random but regular action. I’ve been looking for that one perfect sniper rifle shot to where I want to go. The planned rocket trajectory isn’t going to work for me. So I’m committing to the broadcast seed sowing style. Oh wait, I mixed my metaphors didn’t I? I guess I should say: I’ll drop the sniper rifle and opt for carpet bombing. Hows that for violent action? Stay tuned, I’m sure there will be updates to this news story. And if you don’t even know what I’m talking about, that’s OK. Half the time I don’t even know what I’m talking about. The key’s in knowing which half is which.

Blog post accomplish – what can I do next? Oh, hey, why don’t you take some action today? Why don’t you leave a comment here? That’s a novel idea, I mean you just spent all that time reading this… what do you say?

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Aug 26 2010

We Rode the Superman

Published by under Ah-Ha Moments,Kelsey Kids

Most summers we find a way to get out to Six Flags. I tried to do something with each child individually over the summer, but Hannah and Joshua both liked Six Flags enough that we just combined their activities.

This summer a Six Flags visit wasn’t looking too likely because of budgets and time crunches. But Hannah’s insistence that this was her “summer of freedom” before heading off to Academy (so named because all future summers might include a job, and jobs = slavery I guess??) lead to pleading and finally I said that at some point this summer we would go.

We did go. It was August 7th. We had a fun time, and Hannah brought her friend Maddie along so we were an even number. Who wants to go to an amusement park with an odd rider for every coaster? You need an even number.

Superman pic by Wobbly85 on FlickrThere was one thing of significance that I want to record here because it has a greater relevance to life and moving on into adulthood. We all rode the Superman ride. (What? So what!)

Well, the Kelsey Kids are known (by me) as being a little fearful of trying new things. I had only been on the Superman once before, and it was scary for me. I’m afraid of heights, but I wanted to try it. The kids sat below and prayed for me to live. It was a nice ride, it’s always enjoyable to see your life flash before your eyes. It’s not an action flick, but it wasn’t a tragedy either.

Anyway, we started talking about going on it. I made sure they knew I was scared riding it last time. But Maddie was game. Joshua then decided he would do it (he did have cold feet later, but he overcame). Hannah was reticent. Eventually she decided to go for it. She claims we talked her into it. But it was clearly her choice.

We were going to ride some other rides first, but as we walked by I suggested we strike while the iron was hot. So we got in line. The anxiety boiled up and when we were finally seated we were at the point of “what were we thinking?” Hannah was practically in tears. The ride operator just smiled and held back a giggle as she said “Have fun!” in a taunting voice.

But it was over pretty quick – and no deaths occurred on that 45 second ride (41 of those seconds was going up).

But the lesson was that you can, indeed, face your fears. What we thought was going to be terrifying wasn’t so bad really. Some might even call it fun – well, some might.

Just remembering that we “rode the Superman”, we stepped up and took action and survived it, can be an encouragement when facing new experiences that we aren’t quite sure about.

The next week Hannah headed off to boarding school. We would often say, “How hard can it be? You did ride the Superman after all…”

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Jan 22 2009

How a republic dies.

Published by under Ah-Ha Moments

This is a great little video that was referred to me in an e-mail.  It is a great little piece for homeschool students and any adults that are unsure about how all the different political systems compare to each other.  I like the fact that it shows that “left” and “right” are not adequate labels to describe the governmental options.  Check it out.

I would be very interested in what you thought. Feel free to share this link so other people can learn this important lesson, before it’s too late. Copy it from here:

So, what did you think?

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Mar 04 2008

I wish I would’ve known this when I was a kid!

Published by under Ah-Ha Moments

This article on the Scientific American web site describes my outlook on life growing with amazing accuracy! I’m surprised how detailed they can be in calling me a “fixed mind-set”.  It explains so many things.

I was in the gifted program in school.  I was always told I was smart.  I had terrible study habits going into jr. high and high school.  I got by on my smarts.  If I had it, I had it.  Doing homework wasn’t going to change that.  I became a very good test taker.  That showed what I knew, not repetitive homework.  I thought of myself as lazy (still do!), when it seems clear that this is a symptom of the fixed mind-set.

I never liked being categorized unless it was in a favorable way, because you can’t change things.  I liked test scores and IQ tests because I excelled.  But when things got progressively harder I would make excuses and start to “check out” mentally.

I’ve only recently (since 2000 maybe?) began to look at life from a growth mind-set.  Looking at practicing, or trying new things and a different perspective about failure as a mastery activity instead of drudgery.

This article link may not always be there – it was written in November of 2007.  And it is a little academic; it talks about some studies that have been done to show the difference in effectiveness for children who subscribe to these two mind sets.

There is a focus in the article about the importance of deciding to teach this growth mind-set to children as they grow up.  This has been part of my frustration with teaching my own children.  I want them to see trying something as a positive thing.  And to see failure as just a step towards success.  At times they show such fear over trying something they haven’t experienced before.  It can actually see the struggle between the fixed and the growth mind-set taking place.  Now that I can identify and name this phenomenon, it will be that much easier to address and hopefully turn around.

Enough of me rambling on about it – read the article for yourself.  Oh, you don’t read very well?  Well give it a try!  You do get better with a little bit of effort! 😉

Scientific American: The Secret to Raising Smart Kids

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