Are You a Clickabator?

Self-Abuse in the 21st Century

Do you feel stressed out? Do you feel like there’s too much to do and too little time in which to do it?

If so, you’re not alone. I’ve written in the past about our increasing need to stay connected with everything and everyone one 24/7/365. It’s exhausting! So I came up with a new way of expressing it.

Clickabation

It came to me the other day when I remembered the term, “Googlebation.” Have you heard of that? Googlebating is when we Google ourselves. It’s a good idea to do that from time-to-time. You might be surprised with what you’ll find.

I realized that I’m guilty of “clickabating,” though that might be “tapabating” or “swipabating” if you spend more time on Tinder, Grindr, or Match.com than you do on YouTube or NPR news. It could be considered Internet self abuse.

What over-clicking, -tapping, and -swiping is doing is ramping up the need for more and more. It’s cocaine for our fingertips, but doesn’t do our brain any good at all. Like that other kind of abuse, it seldom satisfies, often leaves us empty for what we really want, and makes us crave for our next fix.

Take the time to think about what your fingers are doing, where they are leading you, and how that next site or profile will either enhance your life, or leave you drained and empty. It’s all about choices, dearie!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

Copyright © 2018 Terry Drew Karanen. All rights reserved.
This message may be re-printed, copied and/or forwarded without permission, as long as the content is not altered in any way and credit is given to the author.

Lead, Follow, or Get Out of My Way

Where Are the Leaders?

What are leaders supposed to do?

Leaders are supposed to lead.

Duh.

Seems like a no-brainer, huh? Yet we see very little leading today in the news.

We certainly see people in power spouting rhetoric and hyperbole – these are socially acceptable, polite ways of expressing the same old crap without any solution and telling out-and-out lies to make oneself, ones party, or ones ideology look good. The latter is particularly effective for convincing the easily-led-astray, uneducated, or people in agreement with hatred, bigotry, and xenophobia.

This writing is not to encourage you to sign petitions; show up at demonstrations; tweet and post; vote, or register to vote; or, run for public office. Those suggestions are excellent ways to affect change in our world and local communities, of course. But I’m thinking about something a bit more basic.

To lead effectively a sterling quality is required, seldom seen in many politicians and other leaders:

INTEGRITY

This also requires an action step that is more difficult than finger-pointing and blaming:

TAKING RESPONSIBILITY FOR OUR OWN ACTIONS

One former president who spoke to this was John Quincy Adams. He’s quoted as saying:

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.

You’ll note the lack of need to bully, to lie, to mislead, or to get people to do things for one’s own benefit anywhere in this admonition. What it does speak to is our need to take personal responsibility with integrity to serve others. How can we best do that?

The best way to demonstrate that we are committed to any cause is to act in a way that is consistent with the values of that undertaking. To be effective, we must be consistently mindful of our vision and mission in life. In other words, if the basis of who we are as an individual is in opposition to what we are attempting to promote, we will fall flat on our face.

We’ve seen this all-too-often in politics. The legislator who derides gay men is found having sex with a street hustler. We discover that the religious leader who speaks out against abortion took her daughter to a clinic to have one. This list goes on and speaks to another issue that we must recognize.

NOTHING we do is private any more. We’re going to talk more about that next week. In the meantime, consider how you might better lead by example, or take on a leadership role. And, in that process, recognize that – titled or not – you are a leader. We all are on some level. The only questions that remain are whether or not we’re going to embrace this responsibility, and how best to exercise the power we all have.

Lead us.

P.S. John Quincy Adams is not remembered as one of our greatest presidents. But his back story gives us even MORE insight into how we can lead. For more on this, scroll down!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

Copyright © 2018 Terry Drew Karanen. All rights reserved.
This message may be re-printed, copied and/or forwarded without permission, as long as the content is not altered in any way and credit is given to the author.

John Quincy Adams

I was drawn to the Adams quote used in the blog above. But I really don’t know that much about the man or his presidency.

To assist with my education, I turned to my historian husband, Kevin. In some ways, the actions of Adams before and after his presidency are far more impressive than his time in office. I see a parallel here in the work we see today by President Jimmy Carter. Here’s what Kevin said when I told him about the Adams quote I was planning on using!

Hmmm … interesting one to select. It is a good quote from John Quincy Adams, but when it comes to leadership and his presidency, Adams is usually ranked about in the middle. He was hopelessly weakened in terms of leadership after the result of the 1824 election – often referred to as “the corrupt bargain” – since he lost the popular vote to Andrew Jackson but won the election (sound familiar?). He really was a poor politician in his day. He said he would serve as a man above “the baneful weed of party strife,” but that never materialized during his presidency.

His idea that the federal government should set the national agenda was far ahead of his time and very much rejected by politicians and state officials in the 1820s and 1830s. His career before and after his presidency is much more leadership oriented. He was an excellent diplomat, as he set the essential marks of American foreign policy for the next 100 years – freedom of seas, halt to European colonization in Western Hemisphere, isolation from European affairs, etc. Basically he is the reason we had two generations of peace with Europe until 1898. He also was a principled politician after serving as president, focused on the antislavery movement. It is his battle against slavery in the halls of Congress after his presidency that greatly redeemed his presence in the eyes of history.

Kevin A. Wagner
Program Chair, Social Studies 7-12
Carlisle Area School District
Carlisle, PA, USA

 

Will We Complain or Lead?

Have you had your fill of empty promises from our elected officials? Are you sick and tired of hearing that same excuses from your spouse? Do you have any confidence at all in the agreements your boss has made with you? Sadly, most of us will answer “NO!” to one or more of these questions.

So what do we do about it? If we put up and shut up we’re playing the victim game. That makes us look pathetic, but at least we have the satisfaction of garnering at least some sympathy, probably from people even less positive than we. Personally, I hate that option. Let’s nix it now!

We could be snarky or engage in passive aggressive behavior. That’s always nice, because we get to use our lack of self-esteem and pseudo-superiority to make other people look like idiots to everyone else, while at the same time causing them pain. Not the outcome that will heal the planet, so let’s not do that either.

It’s far too easy to wimp out as a victim or use cynicism to live life. Senator Cory Booker recently wrote that cynicism is the refuge of cowards. That’s a blunt  statement with tremendous impact, one that holds a message for us.

No matter who hard we’ve tried to accomplish anything in the past, or how often our efforts have been thwarted, we only have two choices:  Give up and retreat to our refuge of choice (think sex, shopping, substance abuse, depression, etc); or, Get up, dust ourselves off and again go at the issues for which we know we must advocate.

There hasn’t been a time of more cynicism in the world in the past fifty years or even more than there is today. We have the choice to buy into this trend or take the actions we know we must to have a life worth living. What will you do this week to move forward in life?

There’s already a lot of things going on in the world that can affect us, but only we have the choice to change our attitude. Let’s agree to move forward, be willing to address our own issues and call to task anyone around us who is not living in integrity. To do that, we must start with ourselves.

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

Copyright ® 2017 Terry Drew Karanen

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone
#IAN1
@TerryDKaranen

Stop Trying To Be Yourself

Are you still trying to find your “purpose?” The problem is not finding it. The real challenge is what to do after you figure it out!

I starting teaching a workshop over twenty years ago called, “Discovering Your Bliss.” I was in my Joseph Campbell period, a ministerial student and wild about realizing in my own life what a difference having a vision and mission in life can make.

That afternoon seminar morphed itself into a manual and eventually my most recent book. I still strongly believe that having a vision and mission gives us a firm foundation for happiness and, therefore, success.

But it’s not enough.

As I’m beginning to find out in my own life, it may not even be necessary for everyone. Vision and mission statements are tools; that’s all they are. They aren’t the end-all to all end-alls. What we really need to be happy and succeed in life is already within us.

What’s that you ask? I’m so glad you did!21-blog

We must stop trying to be who we are and start being who we are.

Thanks, a lot, Terry. Fine. What’s THAT supposed to mean, oh great guru of knowledge and wisdom?

(In spite of that sarcasm there, I will respond!)

It means we frequently try too hard to:

  • Be something we’re not;
  • Always strive to please others;
  • Not pleasing ourselves;
  • Sanitize our approach;
  • Worry that we won’t appeal to everyone – NEW FLASH! WE WON’T!
  • Compare our happiness and satisfaction to others;
  • Base our worth on the number of people following our social media accounts; or,
  • Are terrified we’re “not ready.”

Well, pumpkin’ we’re NOT ready for that next big leap to magnificence. Of course we’re not “ready!” If we were we’d have already done what we’re thinking about doing. But right now we are as ready as we ever could be to be ourselves.

Think about it. No one knows you the way you do. If you don’t like something about yourself, change it or figure out why you are being so critical with yourself. If you need help doing that find that professional help.

The key point is to stop trying to be yourself and just start accepting that you can be yourself. You can do so without reservation, approval, permission or apology.

Isn’t it time for us to see who you are? Isn’t it time to move to that next level of expression? It’s inside you, perhaps desperately seeking the manifestation only you can provide. Let it out! Be YOU! WOO-HOO!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone
#IAN1
@TerryDKaranen

Terry Drew Karanen © 2016

What’s Your Vision

Do you have a “vision?” One of the most important tools we can have for success is a personal vision statement. It succinctly articulates what we want our lives to accomplish, what we want to enjoy, how we wish to live, with whom we wish to live it, and what impact we intend to have on the planet using the gifts that are uniquely ours to give.

This week we continue to discuss The Global Vision:  A World That Works For Everyone, brought to us by Centers for Spiritual Living. The organization has chosen “What’s Your Vision?” for discussion this week. As you may already know, this topic is one of the mainstays of my teaching, my ministry and my own life. I’m very excited to share these ideas with you specifically this week.

A vision statement, and its accompanying mission statement, has become a necessity for businesses and organizations over the past few decades. We’ve come to expect them to be prominently displayed in offices and on websites.

What is often missing, however, is a personal vision, something just for us. For us to have a world that works for everyone – meaning we all have enough food, a comfortable place to live and a sense of belonging – we must be clear individually as to what that means for us personally.

It is only by being firm in our own direction that we can be of use and service to others. To serve without a vision is to flounder in uncertainty, accomplishing little and ending the day with a sense of dissatisfaction and confusion.

Over the next week at the Facebook® page for Spirit, Mind and Body Foundation I’ll be discussing this week’s topic by providing a free-of-charge, mini-course on this theme from my last book, “How to Find Your Vision and Get a Life! Using a vision and mission to create a life worth living.”20150623_093529

I hope you’ll join me and actively participate in the daily lessons and discussions. (Spoiler Alert:  I’m developing an entire eight-week course on this book for individual and organizational use that is expected to be available in the fall.) See you over at SMBF on Facebook®!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone

Terry Drew Karanen © 2016

Affirming Our Good

Do you use affirmations? Or, do you understand what they are and how they work?

The use of affirmations – short, meaningful, positive statements to focus our minds on a goal or desire – is taught widely. Louise Hay, the well-known New Thought minister and healing-focus writer, made affirmations an everyday word in 1984 when she released her classic book, “You Can Heal Your Life.”

But do affirmations really work? Many people in my field would probably say, “YES!” with great enthusiasm. I have a one-word answer as well.

“Maybe.”affirmations-get-clients

Will our car get us to the store? Maybe, if we take it out of the garage and the tank has gas in it. Will the bank honor the debit card we use when we get there? Probably, as long as we have money in our account.

Affirmations, like many other things in our lives, offer a conditional guarantee. They work, but only if we use them the right way.

Affirmative statements they are not the genie in the bottle that magically manifests our desire. Rather, they are a mechanical way to reprogram our thinking away from the mind affirmations-vidya-sury-4goblins in our head who tell us we can’t have what we want. Affirmations provide the mental nutrients for the fertile soil in our minds into which we plant a seed that, if nurtured regularly, will grow into the desire we seek.

Above all else, we must believe that what we say is possible. Ernest Holmes wrote, “I believe that every affirmation I make will immediately take effect in my life. I fill every statement with joy; therefore, I expect joyful happenings.”

This is the key to using affirmations in our life. We can use them for our health, relationships, career/full self-express and prosperity. There is really no limit to the way we can wise use this spiritual tool.affirmation-deserve-success

Do you have an ongoing issue that you’d like to move through and beyond? Consider using powerful and focused affirmative statements that mean something to you.* Align your thoughts with your desires. Then allow Spirit to move through you for your highest and greatest good.

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,

Terry

* For more information about how to use affirmations effectively, see pages 56-57 in my book, “How to Find Your Vision and Get a Life!

#drterrymakingsense
#AGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone