How To Forgive

How To Forgive If you haven’t read it already, check out my blog post The Surprising Truth about Forgiveness to make sure you have the proper foundation before embarking on this next post. Most of us understand that forgiveness is amazingly important. This one concept has the power to define who you are and direct the path of your life either by its presence or absence. Seems important to get it right then…right? I offer the following as my perspective on how to forgive. Self-Assessment The ...

How to Grieve for the Oregon Shooting and so Much More

How to Grieve for the Oregon Shooting and so Much More On October 1st, 2015, ten young and beautiful lives walked into Oregon’s Umpqua Community College and never walked out. Ten lives, including the shooter, which had boundless potential for either great good or great destruction. It is easy to get mixed up in the flurry of opinions around the tragedy, yet we must recognize that the most important and heart breaking word of the previous sentence is the word “had”. The anger and pain of injustice scream within us because ...

How to face death and destruction without losing your mind

How to face death and destruction without losing your mind *Some details have been changed to protect the individual’s identity. “I watched them get murdered and I didn’t use.” she said. Her face wore an expression like she couldn’t believe she had actually stayed sober. The gun man had been on foot, causing bloodshed, leaving our town with four less souls in it that night, including his own. Emma had wrestled with addiction to heroin for 6 years and had only been sober for a little less than 6 months when she ...

Be Worthy of Your Sufferings

Be Worthy of Your Sufferings The Russian writer and philosopher Dostoyevsky once said, “There is only one thing that I dread: not to be worthy of my sufferings.” We can recognize the weight of this idea easily enough, but when placed in the context of the holocaust (as it was in Viktor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning), this thought becomes profound. Imagine being starved and beaten for months on end and still holding to this idea! Recently I had a less noble version of this ...

Real Men DO Cry

Real Men DO Cry Whether you heard it from your father, brother, friends, or society as a whole, every man has felt the pressure to hide his vulnerability, namely tears. Either intentionally or accidentally, mankind is taught the rules of the animal kingdom: show no pain, otherwise you are a target. Thus, pain, suffering, or the growth that results from breaking and then healing, is sorely undervalued. Since suffering looks like weakness, we men avoid it strongest since our gender is supposed to represent ...

Seriously, Don’t Face Your Fears

Seriously, Don’t Face Your Fears There is a problem with the traditional way we think about facing our fears. Take the following metaphor to help us understand why: A man stands in the center of a perfectly dark and empty room. The man has lived in this room all his life and has never seen the light of day. In the complete darkness, a small but bright light begins to shine on the far side of the room, about 20 feet away. At first, the ...

A Story about a Painting

A Story about a Painting “This is never going to work,” I thought, “but I’m going to keep pushing forward until someone besides myself tells me I can’t move forward. If I never try, I will always wonder if it could have actually worked.” My wife, Betsy, had long been enamored by the paintings of a man from West Michigan named George Peebles. She loved his style and the vibrant color that often accompanied the moments of nature he would capture on canvas. Many months before ...

We Don’t Know Squat: A challenge to let go of assumptions

We Don’t Know Squat: A challenge to let go of assumptions             How many times over the course of humanity have the greatest minds in this world convinced us that we cannot accomplish something? How many times have they been completely wrong? Flying, for example, was happening only 8 years after it was declared “impossible” by William Thomson, a mathematical physicist. Charles Duell, the commissioner of the U.S. patent office once said, “Everything that can be invented has been invented.” He said this in 1899. One of my favorite stories on this topic ...

10 Ways We Make Ourselves Miserable for No Good Reason

10 Ways We Make Ourselves Miserable for No Good Reason Have you ever said to yourself things like, “I wish life was better”, “I wish I felt more fulfilled”, or “I wish I had more peace in my life”? If there was a guaranteed way to make life better, how far would you go to get it? What if the 3 pounds inside your skull could make your life better even without a single thing about your external life changing? That all sounds like it would be amazing right? Now, ...

9 Ways You are Flushing Your Happiness Down the Drain

9 Ways You are Flushing Your Happiness Down the Drain This post is a follow up to an earlier post that I recommend you read first: How To Stop Negative Thinking. Negative thinking hits us all. I know that, for me, it is incredibly difficult to stop myself from going around and around the whirlpool of spiraling thoughts, eventually sucking me into anger, depression and frustration. Once we hit the rim of a negative thought, how do we stop the inevitable spiral down? It’s incredibly discouraging to try and try again ...