Archive for January, 2010

The Symbols In Everyday Life

January 31, 2010

Have you ever thought of how much memories play a part in your reactions to things you encounter in daily life?

It’s winter here in Kansas and there are red coats all over the place. To me, a red coat is so much more than a coat. To me, every red coat is a symbol of how much my dad loves me.

You see, my dad supported our family of seven on a butcher’s salary. I was the oldest child and there was no money to pay for higher education. The year before I went away to school, I saved enough to pay for my first year college. I’d also been buying most of my own clothes since I’d gotten my first job when I was 14.

During the early fall, I came home one weekend and went shopping for a coat. I found the most wonderful red wool parka, but it was $25, a huge sum for me at that time. When I got home from the mall, I couldn’t stop talking about it. At some point in the conversation mom said, “Why don’t you go over to your dad’s store and see if he will buy it for you?”

This was so out of the ordinary. We got $2.00 a week for lunch money all thru high school. Other than that, we worked and paid for our own things. But on that day, my dad pulled out his billfold and handed me $25.00.

It was very special and to this day, I see dad in every red coat I pass.

And did you know that no matter how bad you may look on a particular day, a little lipstick will make a big difference?

Mom and I were doing a big construction project and decided to go over to the cafe to grab lunch. We had paint splatters all over us and I thought nothing would improve the way we looked. Regardless of that, mom insisted on putting on her lipstick. I was laughing and telling her it would be a futile gesture.

I didn’t pay attention until we were sitting across the table from each other and then the joke was on me.

Lipstick really does make a difference.

Even when you’re having a really bad day,  put on lipstick, it’s worth the effort. Every time I put on lipstick I think of mom.

By now you are wondering how on earth the word “plethora” ties in with this article. Anytime I see that word I think of Jennifer Brubaker. It’s one of her favorite words. The other day I saw it on a banner for, of all things, Monster Energy Drinks. Forget about the banner, all I could think of was Jennifer, even though we haven’t spoken in over a year. I picked up my cell phone and called her right then and there, all because of a word.

Red coats, lipstick and plethora…. They’re just a few reminders of love, humor, family and friendship.

Look around you.
Be aware.
There are symbols of love everywhere.

I Win. You Lose. Bah-Humbug!

January 3, 2010

I’m spoiled! I can’t work like that anymore.  I’ve seen the light.

My transformation took place in the space of a 3 hour game of “Cash Flow”.

That’s right, a game about amassing money. 

For what I gained you would think that I had attended a revival.

It was a spiritual experience for me. I still get goose bumps when I think of it.

“Cash flow” is a game where the object is to develop enough passive income to get out of the rat race.

In fact, the game piece you move around the board is a rat.  Mine was the red rat.

You move around the board kind of like Monopoly. If you don’t have enough money to do the deal on the card to pull, you can try to bargain with the other players to sell them the deal.

It was close to the end of the game and I pulled a great card, only I did not have enough money to do the deal. The guy to my right had the money, and, if he got hold of my card, he would get way ahead of me in the game. However, didn’t want to pay my price, so I was going to let the card go to waste.

Just then, the facilitator came to our table, looked at my great card, and said the words that would change the way I saw life and business forever.

Mark said, “Dina, you are seeing this all wrong. Look around the table. How can you structure a deal with all the players to where you all can get out of the rat race at the same time?” That statement opened up a whole new way of seeing the world to me.

Then he proceeded to show us how, by all chipping in a certain amount of money, every player at the table could participate in the deal that would catapult all of us into the winners circle at that very moment.

The game was a microcosm of the macrocosm that is our collective life. We’re all on this planet together. There is a way for all of us to ‘chip in’ our time, our talents, and our money to make anything we desire a reality.

All we have to do is stop looking at life as….. “If I win you lose or if you win I lose.”

Instead, we can look at the big picture, look at the skills and resources that are needed, and bring a group together that can meet the shared goal by each contributing their passion to the project. 

When we can do that, we all win together. And that is ‘The Game of Life’ played out in a way that would make every day feel like Christmas and… maybe even bring a little bit of heaven to earth.