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Optimism

Ripples v11.21: Giant Possibilities!

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Ripples v11.21: Giant Possibilities!
The Ripples Project is a tribe of 22,441
who believe tiny actions create big possibilities
1999-2009: 10 years of Ripples!
Monday, June 1, 2009

_______
PEBBLE
Nothing is too high if you’re a giant in your mind.
-Steven H. (9th grader), submitted by Heather C. (his teacher), Morehead City NC

________
BOULDER
You are everything that is–
your thoughts, your life, your dreams come true.
You are everything you choose to be.
You are as unlimited as the universe.
-Shad Helmstetter, submitted by Mia Su C., Greensboro NC

_______
PONDER
Thanks for letting me take a week off! I hope you had an enjoyable holiday weekend and short week, and I hope this week is filled with enormous POSSIBILITIES!

Spend at least a few moments pondering them, a few moments savoring them, and then please spend a few moments acting on them!

Peace,
Paul… Read More!

Ripples v11.10: Hope for Treasure!

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Ripples v11.10: Hope for Treasure!
The Ripples Project is a tribe of 22,048
who believe tiny actions create big possibilities
1999-2009: 10 years of Ripples!

_______
PEBBLE
Where there is ruin, there is hope for treasure.
-Rumi, submitted by Karen L., Cincinnati OH

_________
BOULDER
To be hopeful in bad times
is not just foolishly romantic.
It is based on the fact that
human history is a history not only of cruelty,
but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness…
-Howard Zinn, submitted by Leslie S., Madison WI

_________
PONDER

Like courage or optimism, hope is something that is most useful when it is the hardest to muster—at our darkest moments. Its easy for us to be hopeful when things are going well. We are often awash in hope then, but we don’t really need it. I think this is why real hope isn’t easy. Hope can be scary, it can be fleeting, it can be challenging. Which also makes hope so valuable.

So have hope!

In some ways, hope is a skill that can improve with practice. One tip: practice taking the long view. In an era of instant messaging, monthly IRA statements, and quarterly earning reports, it is easy to get caught up in measuring success by the day, or the week, or the quarter. Our problems may be serious. They may not improve this year. If we take the long view, however, we can more easily find hope that change will come.

Do what you can this week to seek hope and savor hope.

Peace,
Paul
p.s. Thanks to my best friend Ron who helped me write this week’s ponder. He didn’t ask for attribution, but I know he wouldn’t want me plagiarizing either.… Read More!

Ripples v11.06: Aspire!

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Ripples v11.06: Aspire!
The Ripples Project is a tribe of 21,750
who believe tiny actions create big possibilities
1999-2009: 10 years of Ripples!

_______
PEBBLE
Success is the good fortune that comes from
aspiration, desperation, perspiration and inspiration.
-Evan Esar, submitted by Stephie C., Freehold NJ

_________
BOULDER
Stand often in the company of dreamers…
they tickle your common sense
and believe you can achieve
that which is impossible.
-Mary Anne Radmacher, submitted by Cheryl B., Madison WI

_________
PONDER
Would you dream with me for a few moments?

Many of you know that a few years ago I covered my car in smiley faces and the phrases “Kindness Ripples,” “Peace Ripples,” and “Happiness Ripples.” Since then I have been pondering what it would be like to drive around the country to hang out with fellow ripplers and see if we could create some powerful waves of inspiration. I think in light of the many challenges that we are currently facing, the time has come to make this dream a reality. As a bonus, it would be a magnificently fun way to say THANKS to many of you for ten years of nurturing The Ripples Project!

This could be as simple as showing up in your city and breaking break at a restaurant with whoever shows up, or it could be as elaborate as planning inspirational presentations and trying to gather a few dozen or a few hundred people together who need a big splash of inspiration.

In order to encourage a “group conversation,” I have posted discussion topics on our Facebook & LinkedIn groups (see links below) and I need to hear from you! How could we make this happen? Where should I go? Can you help? If you are not yet a part of one of these online communities, this could be the perfect reason to join one because you’ll instantly have access to many connections with the RIPPLES groups there!

Are you in?

Peace,
Paul… Read More!

Ripples v10.50: Shock Absorbers!

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Ripples v10.50: Shock Absorbers!
The Ripples Project: a tribe of 21,272
who believe tiny actions create big possibilities

_______
PEBBLE
The most wasted of all days is one without laughter.
-e.e.cummings, submitted by Gail H., Portland OR

_________
BOULDER
Laughter is to life
what shock absorbers are to automobiles.
It won’t take the potholes out of the road,
but it sure makes the ride a lot smoother.
-Barbara Johnson, submitted by Amanda P., La Crosse WI

_________
PONDER
There is so much STUFF going on right now in your life and in the world. Some of it is really serious which makes it even MORE important that you take time every day to laugh! So, search online for a good joke, call a friend who always makes you giggle, or ask yourself why the chicken crossed the road and let whatever pops up lead to a good belly laugh. After all, a chicken crossing the road is poultry in motion! (source: http://www.jokesclean.com/ )

Peace & haha to you,

Paul… Read More!

Ripples v9.38: Optimism!

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Ripples v9.38: Optimism!
9/17/07: a free weekly splash from Paul & The Ripples Project

____________________PEBBLE ____________________

Optimism is essential to achievement,
and it is also the foundation of courage and of true progress.
-Nicholas Murray Butler, submitted by Joycelyn F., Reedsburg WI

____________________BOULDER ____________________

No pessimist ever discovered
the secrets of the stars,
or sailed to an uncharted land,
or opened a new heaven
to the human spirit.
-Hellen Keller, submitted by Lori W.

____________________PONDER ____________________

Many of you have heard me jokingly say that another word for “optimistic” is “delusional.”

Studies have shown that optimistic people tend to overestimate their intelligence, skill level, attractiveness, and the outcome of certain events. They are inaccurate, and yet they remain optimistic that “everything will turn out just fine!” Pessimists (who I think sometimes cower under the label of “realist” even if that doesn’t quite accurately describe their common state of mind), like to relish the truth in statements such as “If you don’t want to be disappointed, lower your expectations.”

Which is better? I suppose it depends on what you are looking for. If you want to be RIGHT most of the time, it is probably better to be pessimistic; if you want to be HAPPY, perhaps an extra dose of optimism might be a great prescription to try. Of course, that assessment doesn’t include the issue of self fulfilling prophecies. Those of us with high expectations for ourselves and others may not find those expectations filled, but since people tend to rise to meet those expectations we are far better off when we and those around us get CLOSE! If you want your expand your team, you could shoot for 2-3 new members and probably meet your goal OR you could be wildly optimistic and try for 20 new members. You may only get half way there with 10 new members, but that is many more smiling faces than with the pessimistic goal.

C’mon, try it this week and see how it goes! I OPTIMISTICALLY believe that all 16,000 of us can go out there and be more OPTIMISTIC this week!

Peace,
Paul… Read More!

Ripples v9.28: Opportunity!

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Ripples v9.28: Opportunity!
7/9/07: a free weekly splash from Paul & The Ripples Project

____________________PEBBLE ____________________

We become happier, much happier, when we realize
life is an opportunity rather than an obligation.
-Mary Augustine, submitted by Cathy S., West Bend WI & by Brett B., Madison WI

____________________BOULDER ____________________

The block of granite
which was an obstacle
in the path of the weak,
becomes a stepping stone
in the path of the strong.
-source unknown, submitted by Shelley B., Des Moines, IA

____________________PONDER ____________________

Based on the number of “auto-reply” messages I received last week, I need to welcome many of you back from vacation, so WELCOME BACK! I hope you are refreshed and ready to dive back into work/school/life with renewed energy AND I hope you are ready to embrace life and all the STEPPING STONES that exist for you. Since we are now into the second half of the year, I suggest you find time this week to take stock of 2007. Perhaps you could generate a list of possibilities that might exist within a obstacle/challenge you are currently facing, and start climbing up those stones!

Speaking of opportunities, I need a few volunteers to test drive a re-designed website. If you are interested and have 10 minutes to spare, reply with TEST DRIVE in the subject line.

Peace,
Paul… Read More!

Ripples v8.50: Ripples of LIFE DANCING!

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Ripples v8.50: Ripples of LIFE DANCING!
12/11/06: a FREE splash from Paul & The Ripples Project

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= PEBBLE =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o

Do the hokey pokey once a week,
just in case that’s really what it’s all about.
-Scott Friedman, submitted by Tracy D., Billings MT

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= BOULDER =o=o=o=o=o=o=o

Life may not be
the party we hoped for,
but while we are here,
we may as well dance!
-source unknown, submitted by Tammie H., Lincoln NE

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= PONDER =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o

Things may be getting crazy for you this time of year…so four quick suggestions for sanity:

Put your left foot in,
Put your left foot out,
Put your left foot in,
And shake it all about!

Peace,
Paul

P.S. One more batch of photos available at the bottom of this topic:
http://theripplesproject.org/smf/index.php?topic=204.0… Read More!

Ripples v8.25: HOPEFUL Ripples!

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Ripples v8.25: HOPEFUL Ripples!
6/19/06: a FREE splash from Paul & The Ripples Project

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= PEBBLE =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o

If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts,
liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes.
-Andrew Carnegie, submitted by Lora K.

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= BOULDER =o=o=o=o=o=o=o

Hope is a garden of seeds sown with tears,
Planted with love amidst present fears.

Hope is a rainbow of butterfly wings,
Gently it beckons, lightly it sings.

Hope is a present of future each day,
A voice from our heart to show us the way.

Hope is not passive, it is real and alive,
Hope is a strength to guide choices made wise.

Yes, hope is a garden grown from love and from tears,
And hope which is nurtured survives throughout years.
-Mattie T. J. Stepanek, submitted by Mary G., Brookings SD

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= PONDER =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o

My HOPE for you this week: that you receive this issue of Ripples!

Many of you have not received Ripples for several weeks, and most of our recent subscribers have not yet received their first issue. I humbly apologize for this and I am hoping those challenges are behind us. The folks that make the software we use to send out Ripples along with the good people that host our website have spent an ENORMOUS amount of time in the past few weeks trying to identify and solve myriad problems. I HOPE we have them largely resolved and that issue makes its way to all 14,000+ members by Monday morning!

Whether you have enjoyed receiving Ripples for a few weeks or many years (or somewhere in between), I would tremendously appreciate your assistance in thanking these two companies who both provide quality services at reasonable rates. Wouldn’t it be Ripply to shower a few hundred postcards on both of these companies from members all over the U.S. (you global Ripplers don’t need to spend extra postage on this effort!!)? If at all possible, please take a moment from your day to scribble a postcard saying “Thank you for helping us with Ripples & The Ripples Project!” and put your first name and where you live and depending upon which side of the Mississippi you live, send it to:

EAST of Mississippi: Active Campaign, 75 E. Wacker Drive # 820, Chicago, IL 60601 (web: http://ActiveCampaign.com )
WEST of Mississippi: Global Servers, 1253 N. Research Way Suite Q-2500 , Orem, UT 84097 (web: http://GlobalServers.com )

Technical Support staffs put up with lots and lots of nagging and whining and complaining and very rarely hear THANK YOU. Thousands of you will THINK about doing this, and I am counting on many of you to TAKE ACTION!

Thank you so much for taking a minute to follow through, and I hope we can create some unique ripples!

Peace,
Paul… Read More!

Ripples v7.48: Ripples of BURNING BRIGHTER!

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Ripples v7.48: Ripples of BURNING BRIGHTER!
12/19/05: your FREE weekly splash from Paul & The Ripples Project

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= PEBBLE =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o

Whenever you see darkness,
there is extraordinary opportunity for the light to burn brighter.
-Bono, submitted by Jill B., Fennimore WI

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= BOULDER =o=o=o=o=o=o=o

I’ve noticed a belief that somehow optimism lacks intelligence
and that optimism stems from a lack of experience and naivete.
I don’t believe that.
I believe optimism is a choice.
Cynicim isn’t smarter, it’s just safer.
-Jewl, submitted by Dana M., Waukesha

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= PONDER =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o

If you are facing a challenge this week that is extra frustrating or difficult or just plain ole poopy, I dare you to practice optimism and see the wonderful possibility in the challenge. If that doesn’t work, stand up and let out a big whine and at the top of your lungs scream “This is just AWFUL and it shouldn’t be happening!” After you let that out, go back and re-read ripples and try the optimism again!

Peace,
Paul
p.s. I will be heading home from my retreat this week, so if you have sent any personal emails I will hopefully be able to plow through the pile and respond by Friday. Thanks ever so much for your patience.… Read More!

Ripples v7.21: Ripples of SUNSHINE!

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Ripples v7.21: Ripples of SUNSHINE!
Monday, May 23, 2005
a FREE weekly splash from Paul & The Ripples Project

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= PEBBLE =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o

A good laugh is sunshine in a house.
-Thackeray, submitted by Reta D., Sandy, Utah

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= BOULDERS =o=o=o=o=o=o=o

Those who bring
sunshine
to the lives of others
cannot keep it from
themselves.
-Sir James M. Barrie, submitted by Vickie B., Indianapolis, IN

Life is a pure flame,
and we live by an
invisible sun within us.
– Sir Thomas Browne, submitted by Marijane C., Madison WI

=o=o=o=o=o=o=o= PONDER =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o

I have just returned from a relaxing weekend with a former
professor and current friend….I arrived home to find an
afternoon sky FILLED with sunshine so I am going to enjoy it!

I hope the summertime sunshine has arrived at your doorstep,
and I hope that even on the overcast days you can remember
that the sun is still smiling up above the clouds.

Lightly,
Paul… Read More!

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