Ontology

Rather than make New Year’s resolutions, each year I select a single word to focus on in the upcoming year. In 2018 my focus word is ontology—the philosophical study of the nature of being, becoming, existence, or reality. I was first introduced to this word while reading Madeleine L’Engle’s nonfiction series, The Crosswicks Journals, and have been fascinated ever since.

Why ontology, you ask?

On July 10th of this year, my next book, The Business of Being: Soul Purpose In and Out of the Workplace hits the shelves.

This book isn’t just about being in business; it’s about the business of being. But when you stop to think about it, each us is like a small business.

Blending business and spirituality, The Business of Being demonstrates how to stand in alignment with your core values; it explores how to thrive, soul-side out, in and out of the workplace.

Here’s what two advance readers had to say:

“This gem of a book is really three books in one: a savvy guide to building a business, an engaging story of a boutique restaurant, and a coaching guide to living an intentional life. Chock full of quotes, stories, and examples, The Business of Being will help you be the person (and the business) you want to be. And in doing so, it shows you how to change the world—and have fun doing so. Bravo!” —RITA SEVER, author of Supervision Matters:100 Bite-Sized Ideas to Change You and Your Team

“Complete with recipes, the imaginative highlight of The Business of Being is the vibrant account of the founding and running of a French restaurant called La Mandarine Bleue. This book is a lucid, step-by-step guide to personal and professional success—with vichyssoise mixed in.” — KIRKUS REVIEWS

Do you have a focus word this year?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Peace Begins with Me

Enzo is the main character in Garth Stein’s book, The Art of Racing in the Rain. “Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: a philosopher with a nearly human soul (and an obsession with opposable thumbs).”

Enzo (or Ensō, both are correct) is also the name of a Zen circle, a Buddhist symbol that represents infinity, “no-thing.”

For me, that symbol translates to simplicity, minimalism, a meditative state, and enlightenment which I define as “Recognizing that we are all connected, then consciously living that realization—our thoughts, words, and actions an unshakable reflection of that understanding.”

Zen is an enlightened state of mind. It’s also a way of being—living. As we close 2017 and look to writing the pages of a new year, my mantra is “Peace begins with me. Right here. Right now.”

Will you please join me?

Incidentally, The Art of Racing in the Rain is one of my all-time favorite books. If you haven’t read it yet, please carve out time and gift yourself with the opportunity. You’ll be glad you did.

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

New Ways of Knowing

HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO YOU AND YOURS!

My wish for you is PEACE of mind, JOY of heart, HEALTH of body, GRATITUDE for blessings, KINDNESS both given and received, INSPIRATION that fuels CREATIVITY, and GRACE—the immediate presence of Spirit.

I auto-scheduled this holiday greeting to publish today because I’m currently at the New Ways of Knowing: Meditation and Writing Retreat in California.

I’ve turned off comments as I won’t be able to respond, and look forward to being back online next Tuesday.

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Unabashedly Optimistic

My days feel much like this antelope that we passed while driving in Montana—On Top of the World! Unlike Pollyanna who was blindly optimistic, I’m unabashedly optimistic—not embarrassed to build a net before I leap.

And lest you ask… no, I don’t gargle with bong water, and yes, my balloon does land.

The difference between optimists and pessimists is not simple cheerfulness: it’s how we cope with stress. Psychology Professor Michael Scheier of Carnegie Mellon University explains that optimists consistently outlive pessimists because optimists cope better with adversity. Optimists deal with stress and take action to handle it, while pessimists often deny problems or disengage.

These coping mechanisms affect people on a cellular level. Optimists not only live longer, but they also live better, having better mobility, circulation, and cognitive faculties into old age.

Optimist or pessimist—which side of the coin do you fall on?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Pathway to Publication

YOU are cordially invited to join me April 12-15, 2018 in Madison, WI for the 29th Annual Writers’ Conference. I’m delighted to be a guest instructor at this incredible event!

Writers’ Institute is my tribe. This is where I learned the craft, and I can say in all honesty that Note to Self: A Seven-Step Path to Gratitude and Growth is published because I availed myself of the fantastic writing critique services offered here.

Click to enlarge

BRING A FRIEND to Writers’ Institute this year, and if your friend has never attended a previous Writers’ Institute, you and your friend can each save $35 on your registration — that’s $290 instead of $325 for the full conference.

To receive this discount, you will need to register together. This exclusive, limited offer will only be available December 4th, 2017 through January 9th, 2018 and will end at midnight on January 9th, 2018. Please follow this LINK for details

Have you ever written a book or thought about writing one?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

In the Crapper

Montana is incredible in a number of ways, with innovative thinking at the top of the list. On a drive one afternoon during a visit to that fair state, we saw a tipped-over outhouse that’s now cleverly used as a junction box for telephone and electrical wires.

The wheels in my mind started to spin as I thought about the ways we express ourselves—communication. The coin dropped, and I heard it click.

It’s been said that foul language is the mark of a limited vocabulary and a poor imagination. A person who can’t hold a conversation without the use of expletives is oftentimes referred to as a potty mouth—the outhouse connection!

I can remember having my mouth washed out with soap on a few childhood occasions. And I can still hear my mother’s wise advice: Make your words sweet and tender today, for tomorrow you may have to eat them.

Have you ever had your mouth washed out?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Gratitude – It Does a Body Good

I’m incredibly grateful. Not only the part of the globe we live on—the Pacific Northwest in the United States—but for our specific town, Boise, Idaho. It’s quite possibly one of the friendliest places on earth.

Boise is quite possibly one of the friendliest places on earth

The words “gratitude” and “grace” share a common origin: the Latin word gratus, meaning “pleasing” or “thankful.” The Association for Humanistic Psychology defines gratitude as “Orientation towards noticing and appreciating the positive in the world.”

Boise – the home of free beer

University of California Davis psychology professor Robert Emmons’ research revealed that grateful people tend to be more optimistic, a characteristic that literally boosts the immune system—a clear PHYSICAL benefit.

Boise offers free smells (good ones) too

Dr. Alex Wood, a postgraduate researcher in the Department of Psychology, University of Warwick, said that  “Gratitude is an integral part of well-being”—a distinct benefit to our MENTAL and EMOTIONAL faculties.

Gratitude boosts whole health

Gratitude helps to open the heart, the seat of compassion. It helps us to see the good in our experience. It enhances trust and helps us to forgive—a benefit to our SPIRITUAL aspect.

How do you weave gratitude into the tapestry of your life?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com