Recap

I hope all is well.

We’ve gone over quite a bit in the last few weeks, and I thought today would be good to take a moment and recap a little bit and help anybody who’s coming in late to go back and re-look at the blogs that were posted over the last few weeks.

We started out back on 5 June looking at the fact that perfection is different for every person were all individuals and what we look for and what we desire is going to be something different than the person standing next to us. And that is good. It is those differences which helped propel the world forward and make life interesting for us.

Next post, we talked about taking a stand and making a difference. This was done in a post, “You are way too good and way and too needed.”  In this blog post, we called everybody to make that stand, to get out and see what was possible.

We talked about comfort zones in a blog post and why it’s so hard to get out of a comfort zone, no matter how much you hate it. And in the post after, we talked about finding your goal. Each person has their own goals, their own desires, and their own needs. I encourage each of us to find the ones we need and desire and are truly our own.

We considered how to talk to people. And how to hold attention. The best oral exchange of ideas, training, and sharing of ideas comes with a soft and caring voice. These exchanges rarely take place with emotional yelling or screaming.

The next blog talked about how to plan for your goals, and why that is so important. After all, you cannot get what you don’t aim at. That same day I republished my website and let everybody know. It doesn’t have anything to do with the course we are going through, it was just a goal of mine. And, you are welcome to enjoy www.readingsticks.space anytime you wish.

The next blog gave you ideas on finding supporters and mentors. No one seems to get anywhere in a vacuum. For within the vacuum, no one else knows what is happening. Mentors and supporters play a very positive and very needed role within the lives of others. It’s a good thing to have, mentors, and a good thing to be, a mentor or supporter.

Our next post highlighted the fact that computers are taking over many jobs. Many reports say as many as 38% of the jobs will be done by computers within the next 15 years. Although I’m still have not received my flying car and jet pack, if you would like to know more of what I think will happen, please check out my book “Thriving as Humans in a Computer Run World,” which is on Amazon right now.

Earlier this week, I asked you to consider your goals. And, we talked about the fact that having a goal gave you something to work towards that you wanted. We also talked about the need to research the goals, and sometimes change those goals, due to life events.

Then we spent two days mapping those goals. Actually drawing the road to where the we are planning to go to reach each of the milestones is important. The milestone, in turn, help us to reach our goals.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this so far. I would really like you to send me a comment as to what you like, and what you would like to see more of.

Next week we will continue the fun. And I look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you for walking this goal path with me.

 

Congratulations – It’s a Website

Here at ReadingSticks, we have exciting news today.

Today we have launched our newly revised website ReadingSticks.space.

This allows you us to bring everyone the ability to find and procure our courses, books, charts, and other help.

On our new site, you may contact us either by email, on our scheduling and contact page or you will be able to schedule a phone call with us. The first phone call which can last up to 30 minutes is free.

This offers us the ability to communicate and collaborate with anyone who needs help, or individualized service for them or for their companies.

Although this site was brought online today, you will see many additions installed and various changes in the next few weeks as we calibrate the site to the needs of our audience.

Please enjoy viewing this site at http://www.readingsticks.space

Please leave us a comment telling us what you like about the site and/or what you would like us to add or take away.

Thanks,

Mike Balof, Director Reading Sticks, LLC

 

And Yet I Wondered

As I drove to work today, I passed the high school. I noticed an old man, sitting on the corner by the high school, looking tired and dejected. Next to him was an old baby carriage which held all his earthly possessions piled high, covered over with blankets and tarps, all in a heap just about as tall as he was. It made me wonder.

I went on to work. After a while got up to stretch my legs. I walked out to the corner of the block. A crew of construction workers was digging up the street to replace the storm drains. The storm drains had not been replaced in over 100 years and were well in need of the updating. I watched the crew as they tore the road apart. They had the sidewalks close in two directions, denying people from my corner the chance to cross the street. And, they were dismantling the traffic light base. It made me wonder.

On the way back to my office, I said hello to a lady who was walking by. She stopped and talked with me for a few moments. We talked about the way the town used to look.

We talked about the pride of keeping up with infrastructure. We discussed the copper thefts of the decade ago when thieves stole cable to many of the streetlights. We talked about how copper was so valuable to someone that sprinkler systems and copper statues were stolen. Even air conditioner condensers were stolen from the backs of buildings because of the copper tubing inside. We agreed that we had a great new counsel who would help us to bring the city back to its greatness.

And yet, I wondered.

I wonder how we can build a better  infrastructure.  How we can balance the care of material things and the care of people. I wonder why people end up on the street pushing an old basket of worldly possessions, because I seem to see them more and more.

I also wonder why people would be so destitute, they would be willing to steal electrified copper wire, providing electricity to street lights which are a safety concern of all of us. I wonder why as we build our infrastructure renewing it and keeping the city current and beautiful, we still have those whose life is so difficult and are so far out of touch.

It is said the poor will be with us always. This is true. And yet, we must understand that society is caught in lockstep. The height of society can only go as high as the lowest member of society can allow. For society to climb a ladder and go higher, the least of society must be able to move up the ladder an equal distance. If this does not happen, growth stops, everyone stagnates, and entropy enters the mix as the society starts to crumble.

Today, I still wonder. What can we do as a society to elevate the poorest and lowest among us so that we may pave the way and climb higher? I also wonder if we do not take on the challenge to raise the least of society how will we ever climb higher. I also wonder as we start to crumble, what will the entropy look like.

Please add your ideas and thoughts to this blog.  Thank you for reading.

 

Planning

Have you ever noticed how frustrating it gets when your plans don’t go the way you expect them to go?  Have you ever gotten frustrated to the point where you cannot figure out how you got to where you are, no idea of how to get back on track, and just want to quit and hide?

Don’t feel bad we all get that way. We look at others on an outing, on a Saturday afternoon, and they look so much in control. We had problems with the store being out of what we wanted to buy, the kids having problems and being fussy in the car, or pets who decide they want to play chase and tag with you and run out the gate just as everybody’s getting into the car.

What do we do about our plans going wrong?  We learn to laugh a little. We understand these things happen. And, not to get upset every time something doesn’t go the way we desire.

Now you’re starting to think, “How did the pros do it?”  As a retired Master Sergeant, I’m here to tell you, there is no corporation better planning than the US military.  And yet, everyone in the US military who has ever been part of building a plan can tell you one thing, plans will generally fall apart with the first enemy contact.

You think I’m kidding you. I assure you I am not. We all develop our plans.  We plan the best we can.  We work with all our prayers, talismans, and other rituals to ensure things go right. And yet, in the end, there is always something that goes awry.

The question becomes, “Why do we do all of the work if we know at some point it will fall apart?”  The answer is simple, knowing that things will generally fall apart, you plan anyway. In that planning, you are continuously looking for the what-ifs, the contingents, the “if this” happens I will “do that.”

I’m not saying that you’re going to get lucky, although sometimes luck is involved. I’m not saying that you will think of absolutely everything. It’s rare. What I’m saying is, the more you plan, and the more you look at the contingencies, the better you will understand.

In understanding, you will see strong spots and weak spots. Having a heads up on strong and weak areas will make your decisions during the execution of the plan much better.  The decisions and changes are now based on what you learned during your preparation. What I’d like to suggest is make the best plans possible.

Every time I plan I know the plan won’t run as predicted. I do not know exactly what will happen to change the plan. I do know what options are available, and I can make much better’s decisions.

Ever planned, and the preparations made changes and decisions easier to make?  If you would like to share something about how planning saved the day when plans went awry, Please, give us a response and tell us what happened.

You Will Realize It When…

We own our fate. All the good and all the bad. Even when we feel not in control, we are responsible for ourselves.  We have family, friends, bosses, co-workers and support staff.  They truly help. No one is an Island. And everyone counts on others in their lives to help them win the day.

Yet in the hand, each of us needs to stand and deliver. The fighter in the ring, the lecturer, the course designer, the salesman, the Bartender, the cook, the secretary, the flight attendant, the doctor, the Explorer, the entrepreneur, and thousands of others, all have support staff either up or down the chain. And, they all have their moments where they put everything on the line.

Should we fear this and try to change it? Do we need to go to two-person integrity? Should we give up and hide? We know all the answers to these are no, of course not.

As much as we enjoy the comradery and support of those around us, those we love, and those we hold dear, what we do when we stand alone actually is a large part of making us who we are.

Be generous and share your wins with all those around you. Even if you’re a pilot that just flew the perfect mission, remember that you would have never gotten the plane off the ground if it wasn’t for some airman ensuring the air in the Planes tires was correct.

How alone are we in the world? Imagine the realization of the fighter pilot who, while walking out to his aircraft, is thrown a set of keys from an airman who says, “Well sir, if you bring her back I’ll fix her up again.”

Yet when standing there alone, you may find that the spirit of everyone who has gone before you, the essence of your coworkers and the love of your family surrounds you in knowledge, comfort, and love.

Are You Looking in the Right Direction?

We all seem to be in search of something. Moreover, there are many people out there who are willing to lead us on that search in exchange, in exchange for something they want. They may want money or attention, or understanding or belief they are doing good or fulfilling some purpose. They do want something.

The question is, do those offering you guidance understand what you are looking for and can they really provide what you are need requires?

I find it interesting that our eyes set at the front of our body on the high ground and focus outwards. Unless you look in the mirror, you do not see an image of yourself, and it is hard to see what goes on behind the eyes. You have to look around look behind you again more mirrors with images.

The question I have today is, ‘Are you looking in the right place?’ Or, are you running all over the place looking here and looking there for answers? Do you seek things in many places, yet, never seem to be able to find them? Do the claims of others somehow generally leave you short of where you want to be, feeling somehow less, and somehow again without.

There is another place you can look. The place is one of the hardest to look and yet one of the easiest to get. You need to look within yourself.

Is there anybody who knows you better than you do? Who knows what you want? You do. Who knows what you like and don’t like? You do. Who knows how far you are willing to go to get something done, and done the way you want it done? Oh yeah, that is you. Okay

Reach out to the world to collaborate, to communicate, to solve technical issues, and to learn new ideas. Never let others tell you who you are or who you should be throwing a strong keep.

Would you like to discuss the idea of internal growth?  Please leave a comment. You can always reach me at mikeb@readingsticks.space

Changing Our Ways

A new year starts beginning of this next week.  A new calendar beginning is a traditional time that we set aside each 365 days to look at where we are, and where we want to go in life.

New years is the time when we evaluate our actions.  We promise better dietary control, more exercise, or a heightened control of our time and finances. The truth is, we are creatures of habit.

The annual exercise of betterment, spurred by a desire for growth, then plays out to ultimate failure.  Why?  Because the participants are working on the desired after-effect and not the underlying principles and actions that require a fundamental change to create the positive and desired actions. Continue reading “Changing Our Ways”