Liz Wolfe | money
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"He didn't tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it." Clarence Budington Kelland I saw this quote posted on Facebook on Father’s day. It reminded me of my father right away. He is a simple man, low maintenance, you might say, never wanted much more for himself or for us than to be happy, whatever that looked like. Although he did do some telling us how to live, actually, but the advice was always stemming from his love and care for us.

At the beginning of my seminars I ask attendees to share what they want to create as a result of participating. People say things like, “get a new job” or “find my soul mate” or “earn more money,” “get healthy” or “lose weight.” What I find interesting is that for the most part the things they want to create are already within their reach. Take the topic of being healthy for instance. Everyone knows how to lose weight, right? Eat less, exercise more. But if it were that straightforward (I won’t say easy) wouldn’t everyone be healthy?

I ended 2013 uncharacteristically grumpy. I felt on the brink of tears or anger for much of the last couple of weeks of the year, without really being able to identify why. I found it depressing to look back at the year, knowing I didn’t accomplish all I wanted to, finding small solace in the few milestones that I could recollect. I’m not quite sure where I think I should be by now, but my feeling of dissatisfaction lingered and made me an unpleasant person to be around.

I don’t know when time started to speed up, but in the past few years I’ve noticed that once school begins in September, the events start coming fast and furious. Just as we finally get settled into a routine for school, it’s time to start thinking about what costumes my kids want to wear for Halloween. And if Halloween is here, well then Thanksgiving and Christmas can’t be far behind.

A hot topic in the news these days is why the “1%” have such a disproportionately large amount of accumulated wealth in comparison to other 99%. Perhaps you’ve seen the video that went viral (almost 7 million views to date) that demonstrates this with impressive graphics and mind-boggling statistics.

When I was a child, we had a family friend who we would often visit on Saturdays. They had a wonderful big old house, and being scholarly types, had bookshelves full of books. There weren’t many there that were kid friendly, but one day I came upon a hardbound collection of Wonder Woman comics. I would spend hours poring over the stories of this amazing and heroic woman. In later years, when Lynda Carter starred as Wonder Woman in a TV series, I felt like I knew her personally.

There’s nothing quite like the satisfaction of getting something done that I’ve wanted to do for a long time. Like many people, I’ve been leveraging the impetus of the New Year to rearrange some items in my life, in particular purchasing a treadmill for under my desk and rearranging furniture in my office. I love the fresh feel of seeing my world in a new way.

My mother used to say, “It’s always something.” I’ve been looking forward to going upstate for quite a while. Jon and I both took extra measures to prepare for the trip so that things would go smoothly and we could make that oft sought after early departure. As a self-admitted “time optimist” I’ve historically been caught running around, crazed and harried, while tensions mount between me and my family members. I was bound and determined to break from this historical experience today.

After Hurricane Sandy, a graduate of the Abundance & Prosperity workshop, Will Romero, wrote these words: “I just wanted to say thank you very much. I lost my apartment during the hurricane and the first thing that came to my head was ‘Wow... I’m not really attached to material things.’ So I decided to choose a different attitude, and made a list of the things I am grateful for. Well, I have a lot of things to be grateful for... this is the end of my apartment, and the beginning of another journey. Thank you to everyone in the Abundance and Prosperity group… without you... I would be choosing differently.”

I recently read a moving and insightful book called 365 Thank Yous: The Year a Simple Act of Daily Gratitude Changed My Life by John Kralik. It’s a true story of a man who completely turned his life around when he decided to write a thank you note every day for one year. This memoir is an example of how powerful gratitude can be. The story that I remember most from the book, though, was one that Kralik tells in the beginning. He describes how as a young boy his grandfather gave him a silver dollar, telling him that if he received a thank you note, he would send another one. As long as Kralik sent him a thank you note, the silver dollars would keep coming. In this way, his grandfather taught him a life lesson in etiquette, while simultaneously illustrating how gratitude generates more abundance.