Initials

CPA CITP

Society has adopted as truth this funny notion that there are no differences from one person to another.

Then, it diligently goes about labeling each to differentiate the homogeneous mixture.

Recent attendance at a Scaling New Heights conference was a gentle reminder of this Universal Principle: regardless of how alike a group of people may be, the individual differences are worthy of consideration.

In fact, the uniqueness of the individuals is what creates synergy for the group. In other words, the sum of the whole is greater than its parts. Yet, the value of the group is dependent upon the integrity of the individual members.

As attendees of the Conference, we were provided an assortment of materials and a name Badge. Since the Conference was conducted in cooperation with Intuit®, the maker of QuickBooks, one early announcement was the availability of lapel Pins to note our levels of achievement.

Caught up in the pompousness of the moment, I went by the Intuit® booth and claimed my awards. In observing others with the Pins affixed to their Badges, I did the same — for about an hour.

Then, I was struck with the absurdity: we were all the same, as ProAdvisor attendees.

The real distinction was in the passion at the core of who we are, as individuals.

Our value to one another and the Customers we serve is not in the awards, certifications, or degrees accumulated in appendages to our name. Value is the reality of a perception. Reputation is what others think about us. Character is who we really are.

A couple of years ago, my character was tested by a potential new Customer. By being too eager to please, I gave the best of me to the son-in-law, who asked for help. Although purporting to have authority to purchase, son-in-law was subordinate to Father-In-Law.

Once that was understood, I took the game from my office to their place of business. Oh, the fun of beginning again with the one who controlled funding authority. All was going relatively well, until I decided to take a short-cut.

Rather than build Trust and provide the opportunity for Respect to be earned and given, I thought my credentials were pretty dang impressive and decided to share them.

Since we were standing right there next to a computer, what better way to close the deal than to have this potential new Customer see Testimonials from old Clients? As the CFO son-in-law (under my direction) wiggled the mouse and tickled the keyboard to navigate onto a Site of Distinction, CEO Father-In-Law grew increasingly amused.

Thinking that I had thoroughly impressed him, his lesson in humility haunts me to this day, “So, how much did you have to pay those people to say that?”

In defense of my honor, I assured him that those were actual Clients and they paid a Price for Value. My whining didn’t impress Father-In-Law in the least. He was a proud man, who could make his own judgment to my worth. He didn’t need my help.

So close to being a mutually beneficial relationship and I messed it up by wanting to brag.

If only I had remembered:

Let someone else praise you, not your own mouth—
a stranger, not your own lips.

The collection of Business Cards accompanying me home from the Conference was the perfect reminder of how hard we work to achieve distinction in the eyes of the governing bodies. Yet, all that really matters in life and business is the effort we make, individually, to serve those in our sphere of influence.

Initials behind our names are, simply, mile-markers on our journey of growth. The danger is in believing they are an announcement of greatness. They are not.

The dictionary definition of Initial: Of, relating to, or occurring at the beginning; first.

That’s all Initials are, the opportunity to begin a relationship with another person.

www.kimfoard.com

Shepherd Heart

Shepherd HeartThe surest way to enjoy the Future we want is to create it.

Otherwise, we’ll be living the dream of someone else.

Since we, individually, are as unique and temporary as snowflakes, it is impossible for the dream of one person to be the passionate desire of anyone else.

How powerful is passionate desire?

Recently, a story was published in the Billings Gazette of a devastating barn fire. The loss of possessions is always sad; the loss of life is tragic. The barn was full of ewe sheep and their lambs. The night of the fire, Sam and Nellie (the sheepdogs) were diligently doing their patrols outside the barn.

The next day, Sam looked all over for his sheep. He looked all over the place and cried and howled. You couldn’t believe the mournful way he howled that day. It broke our hearts. And in the middle of the afternoon, he laid down and died.

There’s a moral within this Story for each of us: Dreams, Goals, and our Purpose in life must include a dimension beyond the Stuff. Otherwise, if our possessions are lost, we’ll tip over and die, too. Animals operate on instinct. Humans are the only creatures of thought.

Whatever we Think about is, eventually, what we will Do.

The common belief is, “We came into this world with nothing and we’ll leave with nothing.”

That statement is partially correct; insomuch, that, there are no luggage-racks on hearses. Yet, we arrive naked and crying into this existence with the most valuable asset and greatest potential for building a legacy: A Mind.

Start with Nothing, Build Something

There are two ways to do that:

1.) Focus all of your early efforts on your own Business. Start with one Customer and carefully manage those early earnings by minimizing expenses and maximizing savings, until the Business can provide (extra) Time and Money for Personal pursuits.

2.) Establish yourself as a Get-‘er-Done person with a quality Company, which pays for performance, while you Learn and Save. Then, the path of Success might be to continue that Journey (of more Time and Money for Personal pursuits), or the Seed Money will be available to Start your own Company.

Either way, there is only one person responsible for your life: YOU.

I struggled with that for a long time, too. I thought if I worked hard and played by all of the rules, someday, somehow, somebody would notice and make me rich and famous. Doesn’t work that way. Individually: The world is what we make of it. Stated differently, in the first-person tense: If It Is To Be, It Is Up To Me.

Recommendations:

1.) Write down, exactly, what you want your Future to be.

2.) Prepare your Mind and make Plans for your Future. When possible, grab your SmartPhone and Search on topics of interest. In other words, do the Research & Development required to move you one step closer to your Dream.

3.) When appropriate, share the image of your Future with others. That can only be done after you Commit to the Future of your choice. By sharing, you empower others to make choices which dovetail with yours. Those who care about you will hold you accountable to your Vision.

Money is important; those who say it isn’t will lie about other things, too. Financial resources are necessary to provide opportunities. In the same way that tools provide the opportunity for a craftsman to create, money is the leverage to build something special.

As mortals working within the physical realm, we can be proactive in asking this question of all within our sphere of influence, “How can I help you achieve your goals?” After carefully listening to their answer, we have the opportunity to respond with these very bold statements.

“I can do that. By serving your interests, I expect this to be a mutually rewarding long-term relationship.”

Beyond the monetary negotiations is the real reward, which waits, for those with the heart of a shepherd.

www.kimfoard.com

Conduits of Goodness

Conduits of GoodnessIf you’re ever in need of a conversation starter, just look right into the eyes of another person and ask this question, “What is the passion at the core of everything you do?”

One of two things is guaranteed to happen: Immediate animation, as the person begins to share that passion with you. Or, a deer-in-the-headlights look, with a really long, awkward, pause, as the individual painfully looks for a way of escape.

Escape from what — their own life?! All we want is to understand what makes them tick — that which empowers them to take a licking and keep on ticking.

Last week, I was the beneficiary of these questions from a fine young man:

  • How do you set boundaries?
  • How do you keep your boundaries from being a box that you live in and one that keeps you from fulfilling your potential?

His questions came several days after our conversation, which included the question, “What is the passion at the core of everything you do?” In addition to his questions, above, he had provided an answer to my original question, by responding with, “I do not know.”

Do you, know?

Can each of us answer these questions?

Why do I exist?

How can I make a difference in the lives of others?

What is the appropriate way for delivering the very best to the world?

For those who know (and, those who don’t) the answer is, “Become wonderful conduits — for the goodness from above, to flow through us, for the benefit of others.”

You know — conduit: a hollow tube for the transference and protection of something valuable.

Those without a connection to the source of goodness and void of a desire to share are, simply, an empty tube. In other words, they have no purpose and worthless boundaries. Tap on them and they ring hollow. Squeeze them and they collapse into a wrinkled mess.

Yet, imagine conduit connected to streams of living waters — bubbling, high-pressured, and dynamic at the source. At the destination are beneficiaries eagerly waiting to be served.

Service — now, that’s a novel idea — Bended knee, Caring attitude, Humble heart, Patient spirit, Kind mind, Generous soul, and Helping hands. Yes, please.

So, it’s really quite simple to discover the Passion at the core.

Hint: It comes from the Source above.

As for boundaries, the secret is to say, “Yes, please,” to everything that makes us better conduits — and, “No, thanks,” to everything else.

In fact, we have complete freedom to manage our boundaries. Boundaries are, simply, the outside diameter dimensions of our conduit. Individually, we have the right and responsibility to expand them for the benefit of those in our sphere of influence.

In the physical realm of steel conduit, expansion requires cutting, grinding, torching, bending, and welding new pieces into what already exists, to make the core larger. In the emotional, mental, and spiritual realms, the process will feel about the same.

If we have a passion for what flows through us, we are constantly pushing at the boundaries of the Why, How, and What of our existence. In fact, we will be busily learning and growing to become, better, “Conduits — for the goodness from above, to flow through us, for the benefit of others.”

www.kimfoard.com

Moving Forward

Moving ForwardThere are two things which limit our enjoyment of the Present.

You know, that moment of, “Right here, right now, it’s great to be alive.”

The two Things messing with our Gift:

Thing Number 1: the Past.
Thing Number 2: the Future.

“How?” say you.

It’s like this, offer I.

We are familiar with the Past. It’s our story and we’re comfortable with it. We play the movie script over and over in our mind. There are the memories of good times and cringes of regret. And, we become obsessed with the “What ifs …” Tethered to the Past with regrets, we are unable to enjoy the Present.

We are uncertain about the Future. We imagine a fairytale ending to our story and are caught up in the fantasies of, “Happily forever, after.” Then, we begin convincing ourselves of the impossibility and worrying about the risks. Fearful of the Future with anxiety, we are unable to enjoy the Present.

There is a better way.

Let’s put the Past and Future in perspective.

Past ~ This alone is denied to God: the power to undo the past.

Future ~ Someone once asked the Spartan king Leonidas to identify the supreme warrior virtue from which all others flowed. He replied: “Contempt for death.” For us as artists, read “failure.” Contempt for failure is our cardinal virtue. By confining our attention territorially to our own thoughts and actions—in other words, to the work and its demands—we cut the earth from beneath the blue-painted, shield-banging, spear-brandishing foe.

[Pressfield, Steven (2010-10-11). The War Of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle. Premiere. Kindle Edition.]

If impossible for God to change the Past, why do we waste time and energy in the endeavor? If fear is standing between us and the Future of which we dream, what can empower us?

That, my friends, is the rest of the story and moving forward is the secret.

I have friends who talk a good game. They read, they study, they attend seminars, they doodle in their pocket diary, they fantasize, and they talk, a lot, about what they’re going to do, someday. And, they remain stuck in their rut, by doing the same thing over and over, and over, and over … expecting a different result.

Frustrated in their insanity, they wonder “Why?!” they can’t move forward. Oh, they can. They simply won’t. They won’t do the hard work necessary to move from here to there. In fact, they don’t know where they want to go. Thus, the Hand of Fate has her way with them, along with everyone else.

Moving forward requires that we, as individuals, answer this tough question for ourselves, “What is the passion at the core of everything I do?”

No passion? Then, guaranteed, there will be no doing, learning, growing, teaching, or moving forward.

By tapping into the passion at our core, we will know exactly where we are going, what we need to do to get there, and how to take the next step. The easy answers to hard questions become obvious and we have the courage to make the tough choices.

We see ourselves standing at where we want to be and are able to discern the path from where we are to that new place. By conceiving, believing and achieving, it will simply be a matter of time until a dream becomes the reality beyond our wildest imaginations.

www.kimfoard.com

Game of Life

GamesAs encouragement for those struggling with a daily frustration, I will gently offer, “Just play the hand you’ve been dealt.”

Fairly good advice for these reasons: This, too, shall pass; their cards might, actually, be better than anyone else’s at the moment; and, the fun is in the doing.

Before we launch off into the sport of the game, there is one question which has infinite possibilities: “What is the passion at the core of everything you do?”

Your response will be different from mine. Mine will be different from anyone else’s. And, therein, is the secret to the Game of Life.

Each of us has the opportunity to choose the games we play.

Since life is the hand of cards to which we awake each morning, I admire those who play theirs with grace and poise. Strength of will and courage combined with the flexibility of thoughtfulness and humility results in a creativity that trumps bitterness every time.

Does that mean we play the games chosen for us by others? The simple and definitive answer is, “No.”

We, individually, choose our game. The one we are willing and able to play. Unless we do, everyone will have an idea for us. That’s just a Universal Law of human nature.

Unless you’ve encountered a narcissist, enamored of their own visage in the mirror, each of us spends the day looking outward. As a result, it is so much easier to see the foibles of others and what they should do.

Reality check: Who is the only one within our sphere of control? (Hint: not anyone else.) Yes! The answer is a question:

“What is the passion at the core of everything you do?”

You; Me; One person at a time: We answer that.

Or, do we? Have YOU?

If so, then, you have chosen your game. You have studied the rules. You have engaged the competition. You have failed. You have succeeded. You have grown. You have learned.

You have studied even more; this time much harder. You have discovered what you didn’t know, before. More engagement, more failures, more successes, more growth, and, now, you’re ready to teach.

Passion drives YOU forward.

Each day it will always be something; some days it’s just nice to know what “IT” is. Because we thrive on the challenge, nothing can upset or frustrate us. We know and have embraced the premise, “What doesn’t kill us will make us stronger.”

Let the games begin!

www.kimfoard.com

Say Yes

Say Yes

Have you ever been around people who said “Yes” to everything?

They say “Yes” to This and That.

How can that be?

By saying “Yes” to This, aren’t they really saying “No” to That?!

Well, the simple answer is, “Yes!”

By saying “Yes” to one thing, we forego all others.

That is what Steve Jobs did. He said “Yes” to everything he believed in and “No” to everything else. Can we be so brave? I believe the answer to that is, “Yes!”

First let’s take a look at the lessons, Steve Jobs taught:

1. Enduring innovations marry art and science

2. To create the future, you do it

3. Never fear failure

4. You connect the dots of life backward

5. Listen to that voice in the back of your head

6. Expect a lot from yourself and others

7. Care about succeeding

8. Surround yourself with talented people

9. Stay hungry, stay foolish

10. Anything is possible

This is what all Rebels with a Cause have in common:

1. People matter more than things

2. Inspiration is the soul of leadership

3. Thinking differently is a way of life

4. Passion and vision make hard work fun

5. Changing the world requires action

What if every person woke up every morning to these 10 lessons and 5 beliefs?

The beginning of every worthy creation is at the moment when one person makes a choice to think and do in a way which honors their unique gifts.

Each of us has that choice to make: Will we lead? Or, will we follow?

As for me, Yes. I choose to lead.

Wisdom for Life

A good reputation is more valuable than costly perfume.
And the day you die is better than the day you are born.

Finishing is better than starting.
Patience is better than pride.

www.kimfoard.com

Inspirators

Inspirator
We are well past the Point of No Return and headed into uncharted territory.

Literally, all of the graphs and maps of the past are of little value as we navigate into this new frontier of uncertainty and opportunity.

Beyond the time for leaders; this is a time for Inspirators!

Inspirators provide a breath of fresh air while inspiring the next bold step, forward.

Each day, we have a choice to:

1.) Give in and give up to Resignation and Despair; or

2.) Set a course of discovery with Fascination and Curiosity.

Let’s break down one word to build up our spirits to new heights!

I ~ Ideas, beliefs, and thoughts are the very fuel for the engine of the Inspirator. Not just any old idea will do, either. An Inspirator will collect, process, and file the stories of others, until they find one concept that can change the lives of many. They give the rest of their life to make a difference in the lives of others.

N ~ Novel approaches to old problems and new opportunities are the Trademark of the Inspirator. They refuse to be bound by the insanity of doing the same old things to achieve the same old results. Inspirators break moulds to create, heretofore, unknown beauty.

S ~ Singular focus on a target results in a laser-like power to melt away the distractions and objections standing between mediocrity and greatness. Although they are dogged in determination, Inspirators are flexible in philosophy. They adhere to the proven, right up to the moment of innovation.

P ~ Passion is at the core of every breath an Inspirator takes. They inhale the chaos contaminating their world and exhale solutions. First, they listen; then, they generously share in word and deed what is necessary to make a difference. Much more than a desire “To do and die,” theirs is a passion to “Live and guide.”

I ~ Inherent faith, hope, and love of a Power greater than themselves is the catalyst for every successful launch of new endeavors by the Inspirator. They accept the physician’s creed of primum non nocere, (First, do no harm) as a reminder of physical limitations. Inspirators understand the Latin phrase is “a hallowed expression of hope, intention, humility, and recognition that human acts with good intentions may have unwanted consequences.”

R ~ Radiate one small speck of light and darkness is destroyed. Inspirators understand the premise: From the inside, out. They are conduits of goodness for the benefit of all. They purposefully manage their wake to ensure that the ripples from their actions lift others to the beaches of new opportunities.

A ~ A, B, C’s always maintain an aura of excitement for the Inspirator. Those simple letters are a reminder of the importance of a strong foundation of Education; they are also the trinity for the Experience of building dynamic relationships. Attitude, Boundaries, and Commitment are the cornerstones of life, because life is all about the people!

T ~ Teaching, coaching, and mentoring are the ways Inspirators transform the “Why” of their existence into the “How” of guiding others to “What” their students want and need. Theirs is not a one-way street of pompous dictation. Inspirators learn, grow and develop from the feedback, insight and creative challenges of other viewpoints.

O ~ Open to constructive criticism is the greatest attribute of an Inspirator. It will be one of the last character traits accepted and practiced; it is the difference between good and great. Because optimism is easy for the Inspirator, acceptance of negatives is hard. No one enjoys receiving honest suggestions for improvement. Inspirators, eventually, accept the importance of understanding the, real, impact they have on others.

R ~ Releasing the past, letting go of hurts, and offering forgiveness brings the Inspirator to the present belief, “Right here, right now, it’s great to be alive.” They are enlightened, empowered, and encouraged to manage everything within their control for the express purpose of building bright futures for everyone within their sphere of influence.

S ~ Serving is a present tense, action, verb; it is what Inspirators do. While freely giving of their life in service, Inspirators are not servants to be used and abused. They know, and will defend to their last breath, the Universal Principle: giving is the secret to receiving.

Those claiming to be “leaders” are a dime-a-dozen. In fact, leadership has become nothing more than a synonym for narcissism. Listen to those touting themselves as leaders and you will hear a chorus of accolades about their own greatness. Pedestals are dangerous; for those on them and for those below.

In fact, life is not about the empires; empires come and go. Life is about the doing; and, the fun is in the doing. Actions speak louder than words and bright lights make, absolutely, no noise.

The difference between leaders and Inspirators is the difference between words and Deeds. Please, tune out the static shrill of self-professing leaders and follow the example of an Inspirator, to become one. Your life and the lives of many will be positively changed to make a difference!

www.kimfoard.com

Passion; or, Prostitution

Passion ScrabbleOur affair was over when I heard her ask, “Is it about the money?”

Without hesitation, the answer was, simply, “No.”

As a builder of relationships, I knew better.

What begins twisted, ends twisted.

In the beginning, as a young CPA, I said, “Yes!” to everyone who waltzed through the front door. Thirty years later, I still dance with some of them.

Where did the others go?

They are off to find someone able and willing to be paid to perform.

Those little words: To and For. They are innocent in appearance; powerful in meaning.

Knowing something and doing it are two, entirely, different things. My philosophy has, always, been to serve. At times, my actions have been less than honorable. Rationalization was made that, as a business man, it was okay to take on projects simply because someone asked me to do it and they had the money to pay.

“And,” you ask, “the problem is?!”

My reply, “It didn’t feel right.”

Difficult to put into words. Yet, there was something about their attitude that bothered me. There was not a true meeting of the minds, or a connection at the core of word and deed. While I wanted to do something of value for them, they just wanted me to do it for the money. There was going to be a financial exchange, nothing more. And, I agreed.

What begins twisted, ends twisted.

So it was with the woman above. For over a period of ten years, she had money and needed accounting services. I was paid well for my services; very, well. In fact, I asked to be paid more each year in search of a better feeling (commitment) for our arrangement.

Silly me, for believing that people are more important than projects. I offered ideas for building wealth and achieving success; she took them and paid me. Right up until, she wanted to believe she owned me and that I should be willing to accept her abuse.

You see, she is very gifted in intelligence, charm, and social skills. Yet, rather than grow in maturity of business acumen and ownership of the consequences of her choices, her approach is to manipulate those around her. And, if that fails, to buy them.

When I said, “No. No, thanks. and, No more!” — she asked, “Why?”

I went on to say, “Because, for the last few years, I have felt dirty working for you. While I want to do things for you, you want me to do it for the money. No more.”

Lest anyone think that I work just for the love of it, let’s take a look at the spectrum between logic and emotion.

Yes, money is important. Those who say it isn’t will lie about other things, too. Money is a tool, nothing more. When managed properly, it allows great businesses to serve great people.

Equally important is how any relationship feels. It must be mutually beneficial in ways beyond the quid pro quo of a financial arrangement.

Those clients with whom I have danced for thirty years are the ones who receive much more than the accounting projects for which they ask. They, in turn, share with me their life stories. We have a connection beyond description. Suffice it to say, we share a similar world view and an enduring bond of family, friends, and community.

Much more than a professional Accountant ~ Client relationship, it is one of friendship. Friends go above and beyond to serve the best interests of each other.

So, when I hear one of my Friends say, “You sure do a lot of work for that amount of money!” I know we have discovered the true potential and passion of a mutually beneficial long-term relationship!

www.kimfoard.com

Thoughts to Destiny

Thoughts to Destiny

One of the principles of success is to, always: Begin with the End in mind. The meaning of life is discovered in the same fashion.

In other words: How do we live until we live no more?

In the dead of winter, we adopt customs to celebrate birth, new life, and the goodness of a fresh start. With that new beginning, we have the opportunity to choose a new ending.

From beginning to end, the “dash” in the middle is the most important. It is representative of what we do and how, effectively, we do it. There is an inherent urgency to our race.

Last week, a close Friend and loyal Client asked this of me:

Kim

First, I appreciate all your support on the financial side of the business and with the internet services, etc. and also, anticipate a continued long-term partnership in this regard as we have enjoyed in the past.

We have learned through experience, here at Our Company, that cross-training our men in the event of their absence, keeps production up and things continue to run smoothly. So it occurred to me the other day that as our relationship continues we naturally become more dependent upon your services.

So I’m confident that you do not mind me asking the question: do you have a back-up plan to protect our interests in case something, God forbid, should happen to you?—or in the event you are absent for any extended period?

Friend

An excellent question is deserving of an appropriate response. This one required a good night’s rest and an early morning shower, of thought.

Friend,

Evidently, great minds think alike!

Although a serious subject and deserving of a professional answer, I must admit the “gallows humor” element tickled my funny-bone. In fact, I miss our early morning breakfast meetings of the past. Since I believe life is all about the People, the opportunity to discuss this in greater detail is something which might be of mutual benefit.

In the Internet search engines of Bing and Google, type this query: cpa citp quickbooks montana

The exercise and results are for the purpose of making this point: There is only one with those credentials, who is passionate about serving you and Your Company.

In the past, I have made a royal Boy Scout effort to do my work through the hands of others. Finally, it dawned on me the reality: The great artists are only able to create their masterpieces when they put brush to canvas. For the last eight years, that’s been my approach to life, and business. One day at a time, one project at a time, and one person at a time; giving the best of me to enlighten, empower, and encourage others.

This last October was birthday number 55. For the last five years, a greater effort has been made to boldly share the education and experience of half a century. Just this last Sunday, I decided to document the path to my legacy. It is attached as a PDF, titled: Thoughts to Destiny.

Specifically, the steps which I have taken to protect the interests of your Company:

1.) Creation of a File Portal, which contains historical documents for the last three years and will continue to archive all important financial documents created by me. The documents are detailed, neat, and organized for the benefit of any successor accountant, or professional advisor.

2.) Active mentoring of your Staff to accept a greater responsibility for those functions within their control. For example, Trusted Employee will be preparing Quarterly Payroll Reports from within QuickBooks for the year beginning January 1, 2011.

3.) Weekly articles published to the Web for the benefit of us all. Some of the stories are accounting specific, such as 5 Minute Business Plan; others are for the benefit of effective communication, like Feedback Three-Step. All of the thoughts are for the benefit of learning, growing and doing!

For the last couple of years, I’ve been a Proverbs-A-Day guy. This morning, I thought this was apropos to our discussion:

Proverbs 21:30-31 (New Living Translation)

30 No human wisdom or understanding or plan
can stand against the Lord.

31 The horse is prepared for the day of battle,
but the victory belongs to the Lord.

I am looking forward to discussing all of this with you in greater detail.

Best regards,

Kim

All we do begins with a thought. Much more than a story about the beginning, or the ending, this is about the journey of discovery: Who we are; What we do; and, How we touch the lives of others.

Thoughts evoke words; Words produce actions; Actions form habits; Habits crystallize character; and, Character manifests our Destiny.

Thoughts

With a formal education of a Bachelor of Science degree and daily tutoring as a Student of Life, my thoughts are a wonderful blend of the accomplishments of the past and the possibilities for the future. They are intellectual, compassionate, focused, determined, kind and gentle.

Words

I love them. They are the tools of communication. We can say them, read them, write them, and sing them. They are the anchors of yesterday, the stories of today and the goals of tomorrow. Google the phrase: SageTalk ~ Building Dynamic Relationships for a taste.

Actions

All of mine are for the express purpose of Building; as in building-up People. Beginning with the work on me to be a better man each day, the effort extends to all in my sphere of influence. The effort is offered to, not shoved upon, others: Give our Best; Pause to Rest.

Habits

An early morning ritual of shower, shave, bold coffee, and Proverbs, sets the stage for a day of work and play. Regardless of the activity, the focus is on learning, growing, and doing. The goal is to dance my way into the hearts and souls of Family and Friends.

Character

To have it (rather than be one) is only possible by making the right choices each day. Only, I know what is right and best for me. Knowing what to do is a good first step; Doing it is a giant leap for the benefit of all. I have learned: Easy is hard; Hard is easy.

Destiny

Mine is one of leaving a legacy. It will not be measured in sticks and stones; it will be remembered by those whose lives were changed for the better. One thing I have always understood: Family and Work are the two legs carrying me across the stages of life.

Thoughts evoke words; Words produce actions; Actions form habits; Habits crystallize character; and, Character manifests our Destiny.

www.kimfoard.com

Code of Action

Code of ActionAccording to John Wayne, “A man’s got to have a code, a creed to live by, no matter his job.”

Behind every computer process are miles and miles of code. It is purposefully written to achieve a specific result.

What is your code? Do you have a creed to live by?

Mother Nature hates a vacuum. Unless we have diligently trained our mind and protected our heart, we are operating on a program designed by another. Rather than being the Captain of our own ship, we might be on autopilot.

Consider this jingle, “If it feels good, …” By rote, we finish the sentence with, “do it.” Why, do we? Grab the controls of your life and let’s examine our codes.

On March 3rd, 2010, the state of Wyoming accepted into law a bill declaring The Code of the West the official state code of ethics. The ten principles come from author James P. Owen and his book Cowboy Ethics.

1. Live each day with courage.

2. Take pride in your work.

3. Always finish what you start.

4. Do what has to be done.

5. Be tough, but fair.

6. When you make a promise, keep it.

7. Ride for the brand.

8. Talk less and say more.

9. Remember that some things aren’t for sale.

10. Know where to draw the line.

There is nothing new under the sun. It, even, seems strange to reference the unwritten that was the guiding light for the early pioneers.

Yet, these principles were also chronicled by the famous western writer, Zane Grey, in his 1934 novel The Code of the West, and by Ramon Adams, a Western historian, in his 1969 book, The Cowman and His Code of Ethics. The Cowboy Code has been communicated in a variety of ways, by an army of fictional and real life heroes.

Knowing what to do — and, Doing it — are two, very, different concepts.

Since the hedonistic programming of our society subtly soothes our selfish nature with the mantra of If it feels good, do It, we might not even know what we are doing.

A better approach to our growth (and, the growth of others) is possible by understanding, If it is good, do it — with Passion.

Speaking of which, let’s consider a simpler way of remembering all of the Code necessary for a life of joy and purpose. One four-letter word contains the foundational elements of good Code — LOVE.

Love is patient. Love is kind. Love rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres.

Take all of the code, the perfect lists of ten, from the many tough men, and you will find the true abode, for peace of mind and purpose of will. It is discovered in a Code of Action.

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