What Is

The Wind In Our Sails“I am amused that you continue to ask for me to explain — what is not and never was.”

That was my response to an attorney, who wanted me to explain the unexplainable. He had taken a course of action, which transformed the simple into the complex. In fact, the potential exists that he has endangered a Family by encouraging them to, unintentionally, break the law.

How often do we fall into the trap of letting our thoughts and energies be consumed by the not of what is?

In other words, how much of our day is wasted by thinking about what is behind us — or, what is outside of our control? That’s the purest and craziest definition of — what is not and never was.

If we’re standing in the light of what is right, there is absolutely no reason to explain the darkness of another person’s wrong. To do so changes our thinking from, what is — to, what is not.

This is what is:

1.) Law provides order to what otherwise results in chaos. Every structure of dynamic goodness functions within the parameters of principle.

2.) Activities of growth and purpose occur in the Present — moment to moment — because of a thoughtful plan for the Future.

3.) We are Captains of our own Destiny, who sail the seas of the unknown and find our greatest happiness in the Journey of enriching the lives we touch.

That’s plenty to keep us busy.

Understanding the core principles of right and wrong is one thing. Living a life of principle is another. Sometimes, we do what we know not and, then, forget to do what we know. Eventually, we sync knowledge with action, to discover a higher dimension — of thought and being.

Focusing our attention on one thing at a time can best be remembered with this mantra — “Whatever our hands find to do, let’s do it with our might.” And — if those efforts are constant and consistent with a purposeful plan, the result will be a reality of our dreams.

Believing in a future beyond our imaginations unshackles us from the safe harbor of what is known. In fact, belief in a Higher Power becomes the wind in our sails. As with all destinations, Ports of Call come and go. What endures, forever, are the impressions made on the souls aboard — and, beyond.

Forget about the small minds chained to the chaos of — what is not and never was.

Remember the power of Understanding, Focusing, and Believing in — What Is.

www.kimfoardcpa.com

Pursuit

PursuitWe want what we don’t have. Once we have it, we don’t want it anymore. Then, we want something else.

We want what we don’t have. Verse after verse the song repeats, with the same chorus:

We want what we don’t have!

To bring into captivity the elusive, for the express purpose of making it ours, we pursue.

Since success is only possible by identifying worthy targets of acquisition, what are those?

The great minds of the individuals who framed the Declaration of Independence were bold enough to capture the imagination, hearts and souls of the citizens making choices from that era:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

Fast forward Two-hundred-thirty-five years and the questions become, “Is the pursuit of happiness, really, a worthy cause?” Or, “Is It an effect resulting from the pursuit of an even, more, noble goal?”

Ah, the ever elusive “It“. We want It; we pursue It; and, It leaves us empty. Void of fulfillment and frustrated, we wonder if we can ever catch It.

Just maybe, if we pursue the right Cause, we can generate the Effect we desire: Happiness.

Since our fore-fathers held a belief in, and made reference to, our Creator, a peek at the Proverbs from the Sages of the Ages gives greater insight into the cause and effect of our pursuit choices:

21:21 Whoever pursues righteousness and love finds life, prosperity and honor.

22:4 True humility and fear of the Lord lead to riches, honor, and long life.

The common denominators in the results (Effects) are these three: Honor, (riches) Prosperity and a (long) Life. The catalysts (Causes) are identified to be these four pursuits: Righteousness, Love, Humility and Respect for a power greater than ourselves.

Legitimate pursuits will, always, result in discoveries (finds) and a journey (lead), which ultimately results in arriving at a destination: Happiness.

The challenge for each of us is to move the Cart from in front of the Horse and position It for the greatest results. The driving force and horsepower of our pursuits must be Righteousness, Love, Humility and Respect. Bouncing along behind, merrily gathering up the results, will be the cart of Happiness!

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To Be

To BeWhat do you say to the person struggling with the question, “To Be; or, Not To Be?”

The dark side of the human condition is eloquently captured by William Shakespeare in the Hamlet Soliloquy: “slings and arrows of an unbearable situation, sea of troubles, heartaches, thousand natural miseries, whips and scorns of time, offences of tyrants, contempt of proud men, pain of rejected love, insolence of officious authority, and the advantage that the worst people take of the best.”

I propose that we accept the darkness as necessary for us to fully appreciate the light.

Rather than fear the unknown of death, let’s celebrate life. Rather than “sweating and grunting under the burden of a weary life” as cowards trapped in paralysis by analysis, let’s consider what is necessary to enjoy rich, full, vibrant, meaningful lives.

Although unique in our melodies and verse, we share a common chorus. The best part of life comes after an event of near death. Each story will be different; yet, we will all, eventually, experience the realization, “There, but for the grace of God, go I.”

It is a defining Scene in the Act of Life.

By choosing life, we turn our back on the darkness of defeat. We set our mind to living.

These are the Seven Secret Serenades:

1.) Everyone is responsible for their own happiness.

By accepting that we are responsible for choosing our individual happiness, we acknowledge the same for everyone, else. In other words, it is not our responsibility to make and keep happy, or otherwise entertain, anyone. By offering the best of who we are to another, we have fulfilled the letter and spirit of this universal law!

2.) We must be true to ourselves.

As a unique, one-of-a-kind, original image, it is just plain silly to think that it is right to copy any other person. It is one thing to be open to advice and wise counsel; it is something entirely different to let our decisions be influenced by the opinions of others. We get what we allow; and, we teach others how to treat us!

3.) Live in the Present moment.

We can eliminate from our mind regrets of the Past and worries about the Future, by focusing all of our senses on this moment. Really see, hear, smell, taste, and touch the Right Here Right Now to experience a delightful gift. It is either a pleasurable moment to be savored; or, the valley of opportunity to climb another mountain!

4.) Accept what is.

Everything happens for a reason. At a minimum, in every situation, the reason is to remind us of our freewill. We get to choose how we respond: Resignation and Despair; or, Fascination and Curiosity. Stress is caused by the dissonance between what we want and what is. Acceptance wraps our arms around what is possible!

5.) Be a conduit for goodness.

What goes around comes around. Happiness is guaranteed by: Loving and being loved; Purposeful work; and, Anticipation of an event. These three components are within our control. By choosing to share with others, we become a vessel for delivering value. Flowing through us for the benefit of others are our gifts!

6.) Focus on the distant horizon.

Straightened shoulders, lifted views, and deep breaths facilitate our ability to keep things in perspective. Dizziness, and other forms of queasiness, can be mollified by taking a bigger, longer, and broader view of the situation. When faced with the impossible and insurmountable, remember, “This, too, shall pass!”

7.) Think about opportunities and possibilities.

All we do begins with a thought. Imagine where you want to be. Now, look back from that magnificent place to where you are. Can you see the steps from here to there? Sure you can. Whether you think you can, or can’t, you’re right. Right now, the journey begins for each of us To Do what we can and To Be who we are!

www.kimfoard.com

Pleasant Conversation

Pleasant ConversationThere is a way to know what is at the core of a person: Listen, carefully, to what they say.

The adage is true, “What we say flows from what is in our heart.”

We guard our hearts by fixing our thoughts on what is true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, and admirable.

A choice is made to, only, think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.

Anyone professing to espouse LOVE will sound like a bubbling stream of these seven attributes.

Patient: The accomplished Masters of patience know that communication is what the listener does. There is a silence between our last words and their reply. They listen to every bit of what we have to say, before sharing their thoughts.

Kind: A four letter word brought to life by those who “Know Inherently Nice Delights”. Small demonstrations of generosity and loyalty bring smiles to all. These practitioners believe in the physician’s creed of “Cause No Harm.”

Rejoices with the Truth: Happiness added to Honesty, literally, makes us want to dance!

Protects: The purveyors of protection understand the importance of preserving confidence. Secrets are safe with them; Solutions are discovered in their embrace; and, they are a Sanctuary from the storms of life.

Trusts: When push comes to shove, those who have our back are worth their weight in gold. In fact, because they believe in the Golden Rule, we can trust that they will do everything, exactly, as they said. Their word is our bond, priceless in value and peace of mind.

Hopes: In the center between Faith and Charity, this is the anchor for our soul. With an abundance of hope, all things are possible. Lessons from the Past are acknowledged; each moment of the Present is enjoyed; and, the Future is anticipated with fascination and curiosity.

Perseveres: Much more than never giving up, this is a chosen purposeful effort, often done in the face of fear, to nurture our own growth, and the growth of others. It is demonstrated as the steadfast determination of willpower to, always, do what is right.

Why is Pleasant Conversation so, very, important? Because, all we do begins with a thought. Whether we think we can, or can’t, we’re right. The pleasant conversation of a friend can nudge the needle past the broken-record groove of our repetitive thought patterns to enlighten, empower, and encourage us to more positive actions.

That same friend can lead a conversation to new horizons of discovery, which provide opportunities for growth in thought and deed. As iron sharpens iron, friends sharpen friends; until, we find ourselves on the cutting-edge of Love and the leading-edge of Pleasant Conversation!

www.kimfoard.com

Creating to Creation

Creating to CreationSince we learn by doing and the fun is in the doing, learning is fun!

Doing is the secret path to discovering happiness. In fact, the power of “ing” brings into existence the “ion“.

All we do begins with a thought. Good judgment comes from experience; experience comes from bad judgment.

Thinking produces action, doing produces education, and creating produces creation. One is the process; the other is the result. From its Greek origin, ion is defined as something that goes.

The premise of this treatise is that any accumulation of stuff during our lifetime will go, away.

To continue this thought experiment, we will consider a two-word phrase: Building Empires. The first word, Building, is the process; the second word, Empires, is the result.

Let’s begin by experiencing the feelings, which flow through us, when thinking about an Empire. What a headache, right?! Who protects it? Who maintains it? What do the subjects need and the royalty want? Where are the borders and are they secure? How many turf wars are there between the politicians? When will enough be enough? The answer: Never.

In fact, we are encouraged to remember:

Don’t wear yourself out trying to get rich.
Be wise enough to know when to quit.
In the blink of an eye wealth disappears,
For it will sprout wings and fly away like an eagle.

Now, let’s experience the feelings from thinking about the process of Building. Oh, what excitement! There is the initial sense of adventure and discovery. Then comes the dreaming, the planning, the preparing, and drawing of blueprints. Anything is possible! Next, begins the actual construction. Messy at the beginning; yet, still exciting: the hole in the ground, the ballet of activity to pour footings and foundations. And, on it goes, until: we have a new creation.

If we focus on the doing, the learning, and the growing in our individual lives, it is guaranteed that action, education and a new creation will emerge. By engaging in the process of creating, creation will be the result.

We learn by doing; the fun is in the doing. Let’s, continue to, have fun learning!

www.kimfoard.com

Barking Cats

Pets and Partners

Profitable interactions and exchanges flow from the answer to one simple question: “What do you expect from me?”

When young, the reality is “We don’t know what we don’t know.” In other words, “Good judgment comes from experience; experience comes from bad judgment.” Until we discover what we like, many times revealed by exposure to what we find distasteful, we are limited in our ability to choose wisely.

For example, until young humans learn that cats meow and dogs bark, there is the potential for a bad relationship between pet and owner. If the young pet owner expects their cat to bark, they have three legitimate choices; and, one which is more popular and less effective, practiced by adults in dysfunctional relationships.

They can:

1.) Decide to be happy with the reality that their cat meows and purrs.

2.) Decide to be unhappy with the fact that their cat doesn’t bark.

3.) Replace the cat with a dog.

4.) Attempt to change the cat.

Good luck with that last one!

Humans are not like pets: hardwired to bark, or meow. We can do and be absolutely anything. The secret to a relationship with another person, though, is the same as the pet story: We need to really listen and decide at the beginning of the relationship if we can commit to happiness.

Pets have no choice about the relationship into which they are brought; they are owned as “things.” Although noble that people mature enough to choose a barking dog, the dog has no choice in its owner. Loveable and loyal, the dog makes the best of its new home, while expecting nothing in return: the ultimate definition of unconditional love.

The dog’s owner is happy because their expectations are met: barking and unconditional love.

People are not things and we have the freedom to choose our relationships If mature, we know what we want. Even more important, we are able to articulate and demonstrate what we are able and willing to give.

Thus, there are no “right” or “wrong” answers; only truthful responses to the one simple question: “What do you expect from me?” The fun begins by knowing whether we want a pet, or, a partner; then, actively listening to the sounds they make and the stories they share!

www.kimfoard.com