The Seed Bag, painting by Patsy Thyssen  
 


Section 2: Seeds for Special Situations

  • In Times of Extraordinary Stress
  • A Deeper Spiritual Dimension
  • Building a Satisfying Future
  • Growing a Successful Career
  • For Financial Independence


 

In Times of Extraordinary Stress

There are times that call for stress busting extreme self care. These actions will help.

1. Take care of yourself first before you try to take care of another or others. Determine what is needed to take care of you…and give yourself permission to be selfish in those areas you need to be.
2. Carve out two 20 minute periods of quiet meditation and silence each day.
3. Gain control of your calendar!
4. Seek to create peaceful surroundings at home and at work.
5. Find at least one trusted, safe person with whom you can share what it is 'really' like, even if you have to put up a strong outward appearance to most other people. If necessary, permit yourself to hire a gifted counselor or coach to do the listening.
6. Do not reject out of hand appropriate antidepressant or anti-anxiety medication.
7. Consciously upgrade the traditional 'remedies' of good eating, sleeping and exercise in your program of wellness.
8. Learn to breathe deeply and slowly as you strive to quiet your level of stress.
9. Seek God's guidance through prayer, reflection and referencing the 'Good Book'.
10. Get away for at least half a day a week. Even Jesus sought solitude from time to time. Honor the 4th Commandment.
10. Sometimes all a person needs is a hand to hold and a heart to understand…and vice versa.
11. Choose this one for yourself.

For the caregiver: It is best to give advice in only two circumstances; when it is requested and when it is a life threatening situation.

 

A Deeper Spiritual Dimension

1. Spirituality is a language most of us have yet to learn.
2. Before one can love God, he must first get to know Him. One gets to know God through the scriptures, through observing God's presence in the lives of others, and by listening quietly as He speaks within the secret parts of one's brain.
3. It is difficult to follow God's guidance if we are on rigid paths of our own.
4. Seek to internalize the prayer, "Lord, be the Master of my heart."
5. "What must I do?" is a different question than, "Who must I be?" Seek to answer both.
6. The only life really worth living is the one your Maker intended for you to have. If you come to understand that intent, your road map for life will become clear. And the means to live it.
7. When we intentionally consent to God's presence, He fills our lives with hope and gives us wings to fly.
8. Allow everything happening to you to be affected by the presence of God in your life.
9. Anything that takes us in the direction of better health is probably within God's will for our lives.
10. God is ready to assume full responsibility for the life wholly yielded to Him. What would it mean in concrete, tangible terms for you to wholly 'yield' your life to God?
11. Live life as a servant, 'lower' than those around you. Study the lives of Benedict, Alice Potts, Richard Walker…and Jesus Christ.
12. Move beyond a traditional 'quiet time' by learning the art of Christian meditation and the value of contemplative silence, letting God speak in the space between your conscious thoughts.
13. The 'Good Book' is still the best book. Make time for reflective study (lectio divina) . Read through the Bible twice a year.
14. There are 31 chapters in the book of Proverbs. Grow in wisdom by considering one chapter a day for each day of the month.
14. We should be glad God didn't give us everything we have asked for.

 

Building a Satisfying Future


1. A tough mind and soft heart are prerequisites to growing the life you really want.
2. Plan ahead. It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark.
3. Opportunities are never lost; someone will take the ones you miss.
4. Invest in yourself. Identify the one thing you can't do but if you could would make all the difference. How much would it be worth in monetary terms to achieve that 'unattainable' goal?
5. Visualize a future that takes you twice as far as you can imagine and gets you there in half the time. A gifted life coach or spiritual director may be your key to unlocking the road map to making this 'unattainable dream' a reality.
6. Courageously include both the qualities of 'steel' and 'velvet' into the life you are building.
7. If you take good care of your body and better care of your spirit, God will take care of the rest.
8. To have a life with more time and space and less stress, shift yourself from being 'busy' to being 'effective'. Stop trying to change your behavior. Bypass the Human Condition by transforming yourself instead (or more properly - allowing God to transform you), and the behavior change will follow.
9. Everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth (i.e. satisfaction) occurs while you're climbing it.

 

Growing a Successful Career

Growing a Successful Career

1. Sharpen yourself by hanging out with others who are sharper than you are. Listen to learn by keeping your eyes and ears open, your brain engaged, and your mouth shut. Your time will come.
2. You will always be in demand if you can identify, be willing to do and become skilled in that which others do not want to do.
3. Learn early on to enjoy and not be afraid of doing quality hard work that is completed on time.
4. The preferred service provider (i.e. you?) will be fast, friendly, flexible and frugal.
5. If you win the rat race and that is all you're still a rat.
6. The underlying goal of any meaningful business enterprise is found in pursuing profits with decency, exercising power with compassion, and in the building of men and women.
7. Until getting the 'corner office' no longer matters, you are probably not yet ready for it.
8. Make your next task that which the 'boss' wants done, not what you may think is more important.
9. Learning to work hard is an acquired skill. Suit up and show up.
10. Intelligence and education alone, without productive work, seldom produce much in the way of success.
11. The work output you produce is more valuable than your productive capacity or potential.
12. People skills are every bit as important as technical skills. Learn both.
13. Always strive to work, think and write for an audience one level higher than the immediate addressee.
14. Never forget where your pay check comes from.
15. Don't fall in love with your cows.
16. Willingly give overtime hours, but only to that which develops and improves your skill set or knowledge.
17. Never accept unrealistic deadlines. Wherever possible, under promise and over deliver.
18. Always do just a little more than asked and get it done a little sooner than required.
19. It is never wrong to do what is right. Sometimes that requires tact.
20. Master the skill of making your work space and personal appearance seem 'fresh and orderly' even while you are working very hard. You will be noticed.
21. The less time one has to work with, the more things one tends to be able to accomplish.
22. Learning to spell and pronounce the boss's name is a prerequisite to success.


For Financial Independence

1. Start on your path to financial independence today. Make a debt free life your first priority.
2. Learn to live on 80 cent dollars. Give 10 cents of every dollar you earn to God and put 10 cents into long term investment. You can do this!
3. If you take care of your things, cars and investments, they will take care of you. If you do not they will cause serious problems for you over time.
4. Develop monthly and annual budgets and track them ruthlessly. What you measure grows. What you do not measure goes.
4. Extreme care exercised over time can exceed the monetary value of an 80% boost in salary.
5. Remember, money doesn't buy class.
6. It is largely about the law of compound interest. There are no short cuts!