Soulful Voices

{November 29, 2006}   Change Begins With Choice

Any day we wish; we can discipline ourselves to change it all. Any day we wish; we can open the book that will open our mind to new knowledge. Any day we wish; we can start a new activity. Any day we wish; we can start the process of life change. We can do it immediately, or next week, or next month, or next year.

We can also do nothing. We can pretend rather than perform. And if the idea of having to change ourselves makes us uncomfortable, we can remain as we are. We can choose rest over labor, entertainment over education, delusion over truth, and doubt over confidence. The choices are ours to make. But while we curse the effect, we continue to nourish the cause. As Shakespeare uniquely observed, “The fault is not in the stars, but in ourselves.” We created our circumstances by our past choices. We have both the ability and the responsibility to make better choices beginning  today.Those who are in search of the good life do not need more answers or more time to think things over to reach better conclusions. They need the truth.They need the whole truth. And they need nothing but the truth.

We cannot allow our errors in judgment, repeated every day, to lead us down the wrong path. We must keep coming back to those basics that make the biggest difference in how our life works out. And then we must make the very choices that will bring life, happiness and joy into our daily lives.

And if I may be so bold to offer my last piece of advice for someone seeking and needing to make changes in their life—If you don’t like how things are, change it! You’re not a tree. You have the ability to totally transform every area in your life—and it all begins with your very own power of choice.

To Your Success,
Jim Rohn, subscribe at:



Dear God, are You still awake?
Have you got a minute or two?
You’re pretty good at understanding
And I really need to talk to You.

You see, Mommy came to tuck me in,
Like she does every night.
I was trying to play a trick on her,
Since she can’t see without the light.

I was going to close my eyes,
And pretend to be asleep.
But when I heard her crying,
I didn’t dare let out a peep.

She started talking to you, God.
Did you hear the things she said?
Could You hear what she was saying
As she stood beside my bed?

Why would Mommy be so sad?
I wondered just what I had done,
And then I began to remember it all
As she named them one by one…

This morning we worked in the garden,
But, honest, I really didn’t know
That if I picked all the little yellow blooms,
The tomatoes wouldn’t grow!

Charlie and I were trying to be helpers,
‘Cause I know that’s what Mommy needs,
But I don’t think she was too happy with us
When we pulled up carrots instead of weeds.

Mommy said we should stop for the day,
She decided we had helped quite enough.
I sure had worked up an appetite…
I didn’t know gardening was so tough!

We had peanut-butter and jelly for lunch,
And I shared too much, I guess…
But I didn’t realize until I was done
That Charlie had made such a mess.

Mommy said she needed a nap,
She had one of her headaches today.
She told me to keep an eye on my sister
And find something quiet to play.

Well, God, do You remember all those curls
You gave my little sister Jenny?
We played barber shop…very quietly…
And now, well, she doesn’t have any.

Boy, was Mommy mad at me…
I had to go sit on my bed.
She said never to cut “people hair” again.
I guess I’ll practice on Charlie instead.

We sat and watched poor old Albert,
I just knew he must be so bored
Going round and round in the same place all day,
Wouldn’t You think so, Lord?

I didn’t think it would hurt to let him out for a while,
I mean, mice need exercise, too
By the way, have You seen Albert lately?
He’s been sort of missing since two.

Mommy sent us outside for the rest of the day.
She said we needed fresh air.
But when Daddy came home she told him
She was trying to get something out of her hair.

We thought Mommy needed cheering up,
So we decided to brighten her day.
But, God, did You see the look on her face
When we gave her that pretty bouquet?

We had gotten a little bi t dirty,
So Mommy said to get in the tub
“Use soap this time,” she reminded,
“and please don’t forget to scrub.”

Charlie didn’t like the water too much,
But I lathered up real good.
I knew Mommy would be so proud of me
For cleaning up like I should.

I went downstairs to the table,
But during dinner it started to rain…
I’d forgotten to turn off the water, it seems,
And I hadn’t unplugged the drain!

I decided right then it was just about time
To start getting ready for bed,
When Mommy said, “It’s sure been a long day,”
And her face began turning all red.

I lay listening to Mommy,
As she told You about our day.
I thought about all of the things I had done
And I wondered what I should say.

I was just about to tell her
That I’d been awake all along,
And ask her to please forgive me
For all of those things I’d done wrong.

When suddenly, I heard her whisper,
“God, forgive me for today…
For not being more understanding
When those problems came my way…”

“For not handling situations
In the way You want me to…
For getting angry and losing my temper,
Things I know You don’t want me to do…”

“And, God, please, give me more patience,
Help me make it through another day,
I’ll do better tomorrow, I promise…”

Wiping her eyes, she kissed me
And knelt here beside my bed.
She strokes my hair for a little while…
“I love you, precious,” Mommy said.

She left the room with out ever knowing
That I’d been awake all the time.
And God, could we make it our little secret?
You know, Just Yours and mine?

I’m sorry I was so much trouble today.
I really didn’t mean to be…
Daddy says it’s tough being a kid sometimes,
But I think it’s harder on Mommy than me.

Well, goodnight, God. Thanks for listening.
It’s sure nice to know You’re there.
I feel so much better when I talk to You
“Cause You always hear my prayer.

And I’ll do better tomorrow, I promise…
Just You wait and see!
I’ll try not to be so much trouble again,
But, God, please give more patience to Mommy just, in case, for me?!

~~ Maurine Reynolds Adamek ~~
From the book, I’ll Do Better Tomorrow, I Promise

Do you:
Stay where you and accept that you will be stuck there forever?
Find another route by changing direction to get where you want to go?
Or back down and start all over again?

How do we get through the crux and make the tough decision about which way to go? Just like on a mountain, you must:

Take a deep breath and get good cleansing oxygen into your body so you can think clearly.
Be objective and look for possibilities.
Think about what you may have missed.
Think about changing your perspective.
Carefully weigh the consequences of whatever action you may take. Most importantly, listen to your heart and your intuition

Look for what your past experience has taught you about what works and what doesn’t.
Take the information you know, and factor it into what you don’t know.
Think about actions that you are comfortable with, that you know you can do.

If others are present, work together to pool your resources and help each other.
If you are alone, look for spiritual guidance.

Factor all you have done so far and make a decision regarding what your plan of action will be.

Move cautiously.
Be awake and alert every step of the way.
Be clear headed and analytical.
If you need to, you can stop and go through the analysis again.
It is not the obstacles that are thrown into our path, that determine which way our life goes. It is the choice we make as to how we react to them. Every obstacle has a gift in it’s hand in the lessons that are learned from it. You will learn how to succeed.

Wriiten by Cheryl Perlitz –

{November 21, 2006}   Obstacles in our Path

In ancient times, a King had a boulder placed on a roadway. Then he hid himself and watched to see if anyone would remove the huge rock.  

Some of the king’s wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by and simply walked around it. Many loudly blamed the king for not keeping the roads clear, But none did anything about getting the stone out of the way.  

Then a peasant came along carrying a load of vegetables.  

Upon approaching the boulder, the peasant laid down his burden and tried to move the stone to the side of the road. After much pushing and straining, he finally succeeded.  

After the peasant picked up his load of vegetables, he noticed a purse lying in the road where the boulder had been.  The purse contained many gold coins and a note from the king indicating that the gold was for the person who removed the boulder from the roadway. 

The peasant learned what many of us never understand. Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve our condition.  

– Author Unknown 

I encourage you to not be pessimistic when obstacles come in your path, but be steadfast and determined to get through every problem and know with God’s help you will always be victorious and have treasure waiting for you on the other side of that obstacle.   

I encourage you also to try and see the good in every problem that you go through in life and count them as lessons learned.  Be optimistic and see the good and not the bad.  God never promised life would be without problems, but He did promise He would be with us and see us through every obstacle.  (Psalm 23:4) (Hebrews 13:5-6)

{November 18, 2006}   Reflections of Mom


I gave you life, but cannot live it for you.
I can teach you things, but I cannot make you learn.
I can give you directions, but I cannot be there to lead you.
I can allow you freedom, but I cannot account for it.
I can share my faith with you, but I cannot make you believe.
I can teach you right from wrong, but I cannot always decide for you.
I can buy you beautiful clothes, but I cannot make you beautiful inside.
I can offer you advice, but I cannot accept it for you.
I can give you love, but I cannot force it upon you.
I can teach you to share, but I cannot make you unselfish.
I can teach you respect, but I cannot force you to show honor.
I can advise you about friends, but cannot choose them for you.
I can advise you about sex, but I cannot keep you pure.
I can tell you the facts of life,but I can’t build your reputation.
I can tell you about alcohol, but I can’t say “no” for you.
I can warn you about drugs, but I can’t prevent you from using them.
I can tell you about lofty goals, but I can’t achieve them for you.
I can teach you about kindness, but I can’t force you to be gracious.
I can warn you about sins, but I cannot make you moral.
I can love you as a child, but I cannot place you in God’s family.
I can pray for you, but I cannot make you walk with God.
I can teach you about Jesus, but I cannot make Jesus your Lord.
I can tell you how to live, but I cannot give you eternal life.

{November 18, 2006}   Secret of Success

There was once a boy who wanted to seek the secret of success. One day he approached a wise man living up in the mountain. When he found the wise man at the hut, he asked,

“Wise man, can you tell me the secret to becoming successful in life?” The wise man was silent for a while. After a moment of silence, the wise man led the young lad to a nearby river. They kept walking into the river until the boy’s head was fully submerged in the water. The boy struggled to keep his head above the water. To his astonishment, the wise man did not help him. Instead, the wise man held the boy’s head in the water. After a few minutes the wise man pulled the boy out of the water and they proceeded to walk back to the hut. At the hut the wise man asked the young boy what he desired most when his head was submerged in water. To this the young boy quickly responded, “Of course, I wanted to breathe, you old fool!”

To which the wise man replied, “Son, if you desire success as much as you wanted to breathe, then you would have found the true secret of success.”

Success Principles

Success is a matter of choice. If we have enough strong reasons, there is nothing that we cannot do. Once we have the reasons to do something, we will surely find the ways to do it. A mere wish would not make things happen. It is a burning desire, turned into an obsession that will generate the energy to bring you to achieve any goal that you may desire.

{November 18, 2006}   A Cup of Coffee


A group of alumni, highly established in their careers, got together to visit their old University of Notre Dame lecturer. Conversation soon turned into complaints about stress in work and life.

Offering his guests coffee, the lecturer went to the kitchen and returned with a large pot of coffee and an assortment of cups,  porcelain, plastic, glass, some plain-looking and some expensive and exquisite, telling them to help themselves to hot coffee.

When all the students had a cup of coffee in hand, the lecturer said: “If you noticed, all the nice-looking, expensive c ups were taken up, leaving behind the plain and cheap ones. While it is but normal for you to want only the best for yourselves, that is the source of your problems and stress. What all of you really wanted was coffee, not the cup, but you consciously went for the better cups and are eyeing each other’s cups.”

“Now, if Life is coffee, then the jobs, money and position in society are the cups. They are just tools to hold and contain Life, but the quality of Life doesn’t change.”

“Sometimes, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail to enjoy the coffee in it.”

{November 17, 2006}   Happiness is not in Wealth

The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and  asked how long it took to catch them. The Mexican replied only a little while

 The American then asked why didn’t he stay out longer and catch more fish.  The Mexican said he had enough to support his family’s immediate needs.

The American then asked, but what do you do with the rest of  your time The Mexican fisherman said, I sleep late, fish a little,  play with my children, take siesta with my wife, stroll into the  village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my  amigos, I have a full and busy life, senor.  The American scoffed, I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You  should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds buy a bigger  boat with the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several  boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead  of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the  processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control  the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave  this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA  and eventually New York where you will run your expanding  enterprise.  

The Mexican fisherman asked, But senor, how long will this all take? 

To which the American replied, 15-20 years.  

What then, senor? The American laughed and said that’s the best  part. Then the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your  company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions.  Millions, senor,

Then what asked the Fisherman?The American said, then, you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar.  

The fisherman asked the American, that’s what I am doing now without going through the effort for another 15 – 20 years. Why should I struggle to get the same which I am already having now in my life?  

The American had no answer for that!  

appiness lies not in material comforts or wealth. Happiness is within us and comes from being satisfied with what we achieved in life.

{November 17, 2006}   Skin Care

4 Basic Skin Types: Do you know which type you have?

Normal – Skin neither greasy nor dry.
Oily – Skin shiny, often greasy feeling, prone to pimples and open pores.
Dry – Skin tight and stretched feeling, particularly after cleansing when flaky patches appear.
Combination Skin – T-zone (forehead, nose, chin) area is oily, but other areas (cheeks, neck) are normal to dry.

Your 4-Step Program to Perfect Skin

  1. Cleanse. Clean is nice but remember that too much cleansing will strip your skin’s essential oils. Be gentle! Too much rubbing and scrubbing will be bad for your skin in the long run.
  2. Tone. Toners are formulated to remove excess oil from your skin, as well as oily cleanser residue. It cannot replace a cleanser. The best routine? Use a cleanser (chosen according to your skin type) and follow up with toner in the oily areas.
  3. Moisturize. If your skin feels tight and dry ten minutes after washing your face, it’s best to use moisturizer. For those with combination skin, moisturize the areas that are not greasy (mostly your cheeks and neck.) Use a moisturizer that feels comfortable without being overly greasy.
  4. Exfoliate. This is necessary for removing the dead skin cells, and exposing glowing, flake-free skin. You can achieve this either by using a scrub (use a gentle one) or applying an AHA cream. Alpha hydroxyl acids dissolve the protein bond by which the dead skin cells hang on to. Exfoliate once a week—do it too much and your skin will turn red.

10 Things You Should Know About Your Skin

  1. The skin is the largest organ in the body (it weighs about 7% of your body weight). It provides protection for the internal organs and helps your body resist bacteria and infection.
  2. Skin has three layers: the epidermis (top layer), the dermis (middle layer), and the subcutaneous (the bottom layer).
  3. Skin helps regulate body temperature. When you feel hot, your skin perspires—the sweat cools you down. When you feel cold, blood supply to the extremities is restricted.
  4. Pale skin wrinkles faster than dark skin. Why? Dark skin has more surface lipids which seals the skin against moisture loss.
  5. Asian skin has low risk for skin cancer, but high risk for brown patches.
  6. UVA rays are primarily responsible for aging the skin. UVB rays burn the skin. Both rays are hazardous to the skin.
  7. Smoking ages the skin. It constricts blood flow to the vessels of the dermis, which means less oxygen and fewer nutrients come in, while the waste products are not efficiently carried out.
  8. A free radical (or a radical oxide) lacks a certain electron, and will attempt to steal one from whenever it can. The free radical tears apart healthy body cells, creating damage in the skin’s structure.
  9. Vitamin E fights free radicals by giving electrons to the free radical before they steal from the healthy cells.
  10. Vitamin C is very important for having healthy skin. The dermis uses Vitamin C to make collagen (the supportive mattress to the epidermis).

Source: FemaleNetwork

{November 17, 2006}   Advice for Life
  1. Give people more than they expect and do  it cheerfully.  
  2. Marry a man/woman you love to talk to. As you get older, their conversational  skills will be as important as any other.   
  3. Don’t spend all you have or sleep all you  want.   
  4. When you say, “I love you,” mean it.   
  5. When you say, “I’m sorry,” look the person in the eye.   
  6. Be engaged at least six months before you get married.   
  7. Believe in love at first sight.   
  8. Never laugh at anyone’s dream. People who don’t have dreams don’t have anything to look forward to.   
  9. Love ! deeply and passionately. You might get hurt but it’s the only way to  live life completely.   
  10. In disagreements, fight fairly.   
  11. Don’t judge people by their relatives. 
  12. Talk slowly but  think quickly. 
  13. When someone asks you a question you  don’t want to answer, smile and ask, “Why do you want to know?”  
  14. Remember that great love and great achievements involve  great risk. 
  15. Say “bless you” when you hear someone sneeze.  
  16. When you lose, don’t lose the lesson  
  17. Remember the three R’s: Respect for self; Respect for  others; and responsibility for all your actions. 
  18. Don’t  let a little dispute injure a great friendship.
  19. When you  realize you’ve made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.  
  20. Smile when picking  up the phone. The caller will hear it in your voice. 

et cetera