Use Your Special Talent

“Effort without talent is a depressing situation. . . but talent without effort is a tragedy.” Coach Mike Ditka The first game is close.  Very exciting.  Back and forth. Our team finally wins.  In the second game, we really take charge. The final score is lopsided. There are really good players on both sides. And both teams made some amazing plays. The effort was evident.  The second win preserved the series victory.  My granddaughter, Luci, is a member of the volley ball team being coached … [Read more...]

Timing is Important

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So, throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”  Mark Twain I wrote a letter to my oldest grandchild, Gabrielle, after her graduation from Auburn University. This year, Caroline, another grandchild, graduated from high school; and next year, I will see two more grandchildren graduate, one from college and … [Read more...]

Destiny Through Habits  

“All our life, so far as it has definite form, is but a mass of habits – practical, emotional, and intellectual – systematically organized for our weal or woe, and bearing us irresistibly toward our destiny...” Charles Duhigg, Pulitzer Prize-winning American author   I am a big proponent of creating a daily formula for success in life. Part of my emphasis on doing this is because it produces one of the most powerful elements for achievement. Habits.   Some habits have more influence … [Read more...]

How to be Happy

“It is very important to generate a good attitude, a good heart, as much as possible. From this, happiness in both the short term and the long term for both yourself and others will come." Dalai Lama Ding! The alert from my phone communicates that I have just received a text message. Contrary to my normal practice of silencing all electronic interference while writing, I forgot to turn off my phone this morning. Now distracted, I proceed to read the message. “Good morning, sweet little … [Read more...]

Effort is How to Succeed

“Success is almost totally dependent upon drive and persistence. The extra energy required to make another effort or try another approach is the secret of winning.” Denis Waitley The excited raised voices in the cockpit of The Great Gab-Sea communicate that one crew member has a fish on his line. From my view atop the flybridge, I can see Justin and the rod he is holding bent over the side of the boat. Our young angler is holding on for dear life. First mate Ben quickly moves to Justin’s aid … [Read more...]

A Family Approach to Success

“It is important for me to carve out time in my schedule to spend quality time with my family.” Belinda Johnson Andrew leans over and says to me just a few simple yet, powerful words. The conversation takes place in a gathering hosted by my sister, Janice. Present in the room are her three sons and their families from Colorado, South Carolina and Birmingham, Alabama. We are gathered in the living-dining room of the rented condo on the beach in Orange Beach, Alabama. Meeting seven young … [Read more...]

The Secret to Life

“The ONE THING shows up time and again in the lives of the successful because it’s a fundamental truth.” Gary W. Keller Answer these questions with complete honesty: What is left undone in your life right now? What is nagging at your very heart to get done? What is pleading with you not to forego another year? If you are not lacking in any of these vital aspects of life, I congratulate you because you would be considered as a universally rare individual. Almost all of us have something that … [Read more...]

Leaning Pine

“Grandmas are moms with lots of practice.” Author unknown  “In the next three cranks, one, two . . . and there he is,” I exclaim with glee and pride! The nice bend in my light action rod and reel is evidence that my prediction is exactly right. Archie and I are crappie fishing on Mitchell Lake, which is part of the Coosa River tributary in the State of Alabama.  The ‘Leaning Pine’ is a special fishing spot named by my dad’s family. A large pine tree on the shore edge, that had fallen into the … [Read more...]

If I Just Had Five More Minutes

“I am definitely going to take a course on time management . . . just as soon as I can work it into my schedule.” Louis E. Boone Are you busy? Who isn’t in today’s world? Do you really have time to even read this article? It will take you less than five minutes. Still, it represents part of your day. How often within an average week are you confronted with a situation or decision where you wish you just had five more minutes to contemplate? ‘If, I just had five more minutes, I could … [Read more...]

Timeless Truths

“So with old age is wisdom, and with length of days understanding.”Job 12:12 Once a week, I schedule some time to scroll through the Facebook postings from family and friends. A great way to get updated on the news of the special people with whom I like to communicate. Sometimes, it provides inspiration and challenges. A post from Sharon Kling, a special friend for over four decades, caught my immediate attention -- she shared a Tibetan Proverb: “The secret to living well and longer is: … [Read more...]