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Ideas for people pursuing an empowered life,




The rules are changing

Suzy and I were recently in Madrid, Spain, where I was invited to address the " First International Conference on Self-Empowerment".  The entire transaction - from our host's search to find our website, to our email exchanges and Internet conversations to determine our needs, to booking, reserving and paying for our airline tickets and hotel room, to depositing a retainer in our bank - all were carried out with new technologies. Once the deal was done‚ I was even able to log-on and explore Madrid's wheelchair access.

Aside from the excitement I always feel when I visit one of the world's great cities, I was struck by the differences between European attitudes and those in my own backyard on issues like Global Warming. The message was everywhere and it was being discussed at all kinds of levels - from fact-filled articles to opinions in the smoke-filled "Tapas" resto-bars.

I was particularly struck by discussions on how the regreening of Earth is an economic opportunity. People were talking about the collapse of the old economic system and the creation of a new one. Prime Minister Blair was widely quoted as saying that unless we reverse the course of progress as we know it, catastrophic results will occur - not in a far off future but in our own lifetime.

Well that kind of talk stirs my creativity. We've got to change. Delusion is to we keep committing the same acts, in the same ways, and yet somehow expect to arrive at different results.   Are you a change-agent? In Nature survival belongs to the wise who adapt to new conditions.

Never before has the need for the actualization of our creative potential been more urgent. Even the rules of business must change in significant ways as new truths are digested.

Here are a few examples:

  1. Shareholders are supreme stakeholders. -vs- The consumer really is king.
  2. Become lean and mean -vs- Look outwards, not in, and fill real needs
  3. Quest to be #1 in a marketplace. -vs- Find a niche and cultivate it with something innovative.
  4. Blindly following a charismatic CEO. -vs- Self-empowered, management teams lead with courage.
  5. Admire the mighty and powerful. -vs- Admire creativity and cooperation.

Contrary to what we might be telling ourselves, we are not a privileged species. Nature plays no favorites. The jungle's "Survive and Prosper" rule requires everyone to adapt to the times and see the Earth as a living thing that requires our help.



We use analogy whenever we say that something is like something else. For example: A jumbo jet is like an albatross in that they both fly, both have wings, both travel for a long way without landing, etc.

Then, the next step is to draw from the analogy creative ideas that can be further explored. In my example, an albatross is also a self-organizing system - so how can we get a jumbo jet to be more. Try "Analogical Thinking" by clicking here.



Strategy is about making choices. The quality of the thinking behind those choices is what separates success from failure. Today, when most organizations are staggering under the weight of countless reports, studies and statistics, strategic thinking has become a skill that's greatly prized.

Consider spending an exceptional week learning the ins and outs of strategic thinking. Click here for the details.



We visit our grandkids over the Internet. We can even see them live via video-cam. After a recent family visit, my grandson Ryan and I kept playing - he at home on Vancouver Island and me in Montreal. I could see the others milling about their house, in and out of camera view, doing their daily chores. At one point Suzy shouted goodbye to me as she rushed out the door to pick up a few things and everyone there shouted back - and I was truly impressed by the technology, and by how fast it has evolved.

Then I thought about how it could benefit the world. VoIP can change everything. "Voice over Internet Protocol" allows anyone to communicate voice-to-voice in real time... for FREE. Beating long distance charges - now that's a gift for the new yeat. You can speak with and even see family, friends, colleagues and collaborators most anywhere on Earth - FREE. For the FAQs on VoIP see this site.

We use Skype and I recommend it. You can download the software FREE by clicking here. Then, for a small fee, you can order Skype-In or Skype-Out, connecting your VoIP to your regular phone service. Or you try Vonage - which incorporates VoIP and cellular phone service.You'll find them here.



"Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it." - Henry David Thoreau

"To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive." - Robert Louis Stevenson

"Sometimes I worry about being a success in a mediocre world." - Lily Tomlin        

"There is no use in walking five miles to fish when you can depend on being just as unsuccessful nearer to home ." Mark Twain

"Most people would succeed in small things if they were not troubled with great ambitions." Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

"Success is the child of audacity." Benjamin Disraeli



Many years ago, a man and his wife had a son. When he grew old enough, he spent his das playing with a magic boy and girl who came to play with him. But only the little boy could see them. As his parents could not, they believed their child spoke to himself because he was lonely and this saddened them.

One day the boy fell ill and during his illness his magic playmates did not come to see him. Only at the very last - when he seemed to be on the point of death - did they come. As soon as they arrived, the little girl rushed over to him and said: "We know the cause of your illness. Many moons ago your grandfather possessed a beautiful axe made by a great sorcerer who imbued it with magic powers and presented it to him as a gift. With it your grandfather carved many beautiful things. I myself was once a small tray that he fashioned with that axe, and the boy who visits with me was once a pestle also carved with it. So that axe was in fact our creator and we are its children."

"But then why am I ill ?" asked the little boy.

"One day your father was very mad at your grandfather." ‚ the girl continued, "He threw away the axe which is now rusting under the floor of this cabin. For this reason, because the sorcerer is angry that his magic gift was treated so poorly, you've gotten ill so as to punish your father. As we are your playmates, we warn you that - if you wish to live - you have to tell your father to find the axe, polish it, make a new handle for it, and set it in a place of honor. Then you will be cured - and the axe will take a human shape."

So the boy told his father this. The father thought that his son had been instructed in a prophetic dream so he searched under the floor of the cabin and found the axe, remembering how his anger had saddened his father and regretting it. Then he polished it, made a new handle for it and set that axe in a place of honor. And then the little boy was healed.

After, the axe was transformed into a magic wand that was a great help to the boy for the rest of his life, and the magic children became his brother and sister - even if he was still the only one to see them. On that day though, the boy learned a very important lesson on the value of even the littlest things. From then on, the wand - being an instrument of sorcery which knew all that went on and causes of everything - told its creation - the tray and the pestle - incredible secrets and, of course, they told their brother everything they knew.

The boy grew up and became a great healer who, when anyone was sick, always knew why the sickness had come and how it should be treated. He was admired by all and thought to be a mighty sorcerer who could even turn death away. In fact he enjoyed such a reputation because people only saw him and not his informants "that old axe, tray and pestle" even if he always took care to credit his magical brother, sister and teacher.

Folks chose to believe that his references to his magic friends were just his way of speaking, so they did not prosper from the importance of that lesson he'd learned as a boy. For this reason, today people don't know that they should never throw anything away in anger, and they don't realize that if they throw away something useful, they will be punished by fate.


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