Tom O'Connor Group

Economic and management consulting firm

Positive ideas and a few stories

This “Positive Ideas” news letter goes out once a week or so to about 750 friends and colleagues around the USA and in various locations overseas.

Tom O’Connor

The Tom O’Connor Group, LLC

Economic and Management Consultants

A Veteran-Owned Consulting Company

Tom

571 332 2349

781 626 6667 international

www.TomOConnorGroup.com

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“Reaching one’s maximum potential is built on respect for the individual, and a commitment to excellence.”

~ Buck Rodgers, IBM …with a few edits

Where we love is home,

our feet may leave, but our hearts remain.

~Oliver Wendell Holmes …with a few edits

I realized early on that success was tied to not giving up.

Most people in this business gave up and went on to other things.

If you simply don’t give up, you outlast the people who came in on the bus with you.

~Harrison Ford …Star Wars, Indiana Jones, etc.

The most effective way to do it, is to do it.

-Amelia Earhart

DREAMING CASTLES IN THE AIR

By Ton Pascal …with a few edits

Dreaming castles in the air certainly beats doing physical construction work, but if you are serious about bringing your dreams to completion, or if you are dreaming of a positive change in your life, you must get going; roll up your sleeves ready to do some work. Daydreams are nice, and they can enliven your daily life, but by themselves they are a weak source of energy. There is something called the Law of Attraction that has been around since the creation of the universe which has a lot do with bringing the dreams you have to fruition. You can either take my word for it here, or you can search and learn more about it on the Internet.

As I just mentioned, even with the incredible power of the Law of Attraction working for you, sitting and waiting will not make your dreams come true. This great power only works when you do your part and truly believe in what you are wishing for.

From the very first day we were kicked out of Paradise, we have been relentlessly seeking the formula for the secret to true success. Everyone has their own opinions of what success is all about. Although there is no clear-cut formula on how to achieve this, I have a few tips on how to dream and live a successful life, which I hope will work for the majority of you. Don’t get too ambitious. Take it easy, like the line in the classic Cat Steven’s song “Miles from nowhere, I think I will take my time to reach there.”

Some of us might be very ‘cerebral’ and dislike physical preparation work. Others need to see a visual point of reference in order for their minds to function effectively. Either way, dreaming castles in the air is not a clear enough goal to ensure success. I suggest starting with a visual map of your intentions. Take a piece of cardboard and on write your dream in bold letters at the top. For example, “I want this house!” Or “I want this job!” Write down whatever you want in your life. Now cut out pictures from magazines, newspapers and or photos related to your dream-wish and paste them on this board. These images should clearly show your dream goal.

On the left side of this ‘Map-board’ write the steps needed to achieve this goal. For example if it is a house you want and you don’t have money, write down “I want this house”. How do you find money? Despite the highly publicized recession this is a lot of if going around. Focus on your main objective: Your Dream House! If you truly believe you deserve and want it, you will get it. Think about what you can work on, sell or save? Make a realistic plan on how to achieve this goal. Write this plan on the ‘Map-board’.

Create a set of positive affirmations for this task. If we stay with the example for “finding money”, the affirmation could be something like “Wealth is pouring into my life.” Or “I am making amazing progress towards all of my goals.”

These affirmations are your psychological support. The positive attitude to attaining your dream gives you a new and clearer purpose in life. It will help turn your dream intentions into reality. Think about this dream very clearly and visualize it already realized, that you have achieved your dream house, or have your dream job.

If your dream is to get someone into your life, a partner, or a lover, you won’t find him or her by staying at home. Write down, for example, “find a partner”, then on the left side of the ‘map-board’ write an action step like, “get out and socialize”. Whatever your dream is, write down the name of specific goal, and then the main road to get there. Visualize your goals and create positive affirmations for every step of the way towards achieving them. Give yourself time. It is your life you are creating, be patient. Don’t expect instant success. Give yourself time. This is your dream life you are creating, not a Hollywood movie.

Whatever age you are, you have acquired a certain living knowledge of what is good or bad for you. Apply to your life what you have learned up until now, but add to it your own individuality, personality, and joy de vivre. It is not just being alive that makes your life worth living, but rather the depth and sense you bring to your life.

Go beyond your limitations. Take a look at some of the great people who made an incredible impact in the world when they were told that either they were too poor, too inexperienced, too unattractive, or too weak to make it as a success in life. Terry Fox, one leg cancer amputee crisscrossed a continent on foot. Claude Monet slowly became blind from cataracts but still painted his masterwork The Nynpheas. Marlee Matlin, deaf from the age of 18 month, won the Best Actress Academy Award in 1986 for her debut performance in “Children of a Lesser God. Helen Keller, blind and deaf, became a noted speaker, author and crusader for pacifism, women’s right to vote and birth control. The list is very long.

Remember to do your daily affirmations and think positive. A positive attitude will greatly influence your actions and add pleasure and quality time to your life.

Considering that life is short my advice is: follow your heart, break rules that limit or confine you, forgive quickly, kiss slowly, love truly, laugh often, and never regret anything that made you smile.

Ton Pascal

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ton Pascal is a self-thought self-help advocate and author. Your thoughts and dreams will provide for you a rich, meaningful and abundant life; this is the Law of Attraction at work. It will enable you to create the map of your life’s journey. It is not just being alive that makes life worth living, but the depth and sense you bring to your life. http://www.dreamyourlifepositively.com/

It is easy to sit up and take notice.

It is better to get up and take action.

~Al Batt …with a few edits

Read The Declaration

July 4, 2012 by Bob Livingston …with a few edits

It has been over 236 years since 56 brave men signed their names to the Declaration of Independence, proclaiming that the 13 original American Colonies were no longer willing to live under tyrannical British rule.

Those men, among them some of the most notable names in American history, risked their own safety and that of their families by signing the document; they were still in the earliest stages of a war against an enemy that outgunned them and was better trained. By signing their names to the very spirit of Patriotism, the men risked being hanged in the event of defeat.

But they were not alone. Thousands of the signers’ fellow countrymen had already taken up arms against the British in the name of American Independence. Seven bloody years after the signing of the Declaration and eight bloody years after the initial shots at Lexington and Concord, a new, free, republican Nation was born.

Those 56 who risked their lives by signing their names to a document that declared in no uncertain terms that they meant to create a better place where freedom reigned supreme might have trouble recognizing their Nation today. Given the state of political discourse and the tendency for bureaucracy to destroy freedom in order to increase centralized power, the Federal government has effectively come to represent much of what those men disdained in the Declaration.

Take the time to read the Declaration of Independence in its entirety. For a thorough historical background and to better understand the Declaration’s signers, read They Signed for Us which was written by Merle Sinclair and Annabel Douglas McArthur and first published in 1957. If you have a little more time, visit readthedeclaration.com to request a free copy of the Declaration and the Constitution and add your name to the list of Americans who read the founding documents over the holiday. To top it all off, write a letter to your Senators and Representatives to let them know that you agree with the principles your Nation was founded upon, and request that they legislate accordingly.

“We Are Spartacus

We can each stand up for basic human freedom.

by Kirk Douglas …with a few edits

When you reach 95, as I have, after you get over your surprise, you start looking back. I’ve been thinking a lot about my parents, Russian immigrants who came to this country in 1912 – exactly one hundred years ago.

For them, the United States was a dream beyond description. They couldn’t read or write, but they saw a better life for their children in a new country half a world away from their tiny shtetl.

Against all odds they crossed the Atlantic. And like millions of people before and after, they passed close to the Statue of Liberty as they entered New York Harbor. Perhaps someone who could read English translated the beautiful words of Emma Lazarus, etched in bronze on the pedestal:

“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

What would my parents think about America if they arrived here today? Would they even want to come? I wonder.

A century ago, America was a beacon of hope to the world. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness were ideals not clichés. Any boy could still grow up to be president. Today, few boys–or girls, for that matter–dream of that. The American dream has become about quick fame and easy fortune, not public service and hard work.

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I know something about this. I have been an actor for most of my life. When I started out, I didn’t think about anything except what was good for me. Like many movie stars, I became all wrapped up in myself. When I threw off the wrappings, I wrapped myself in the character I was playing.

My change came suddenly when I heard these words spoken by President Kennedy in his Inaugural Address in 1961:

“Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”

It was a moment of clarity for me – like somebody had flipped a switch and the lights came on.

I had been lucky. Fame is as much about luck as it is about talent, perhaps more. My luck hadn’t come without a lot of hard work, but I now realized that it carried a responsibility along with it. JFK’s call to conscience made me understand that.

His words also reminded me of something my mother taught me.

For years we lived in a little town called Amsterdam, New York. We had a house near the carpet mills and the railroad tracks. We were very poor and often didn’t have enough to eat. Although we had nothing to spare, the hobos from the trains still came knocking on our door in the evening, asking for food. It scared me to look at them–disheveled, dirty. My mother was never frightened. Somehow she always found a little extra food to give them.

Then she said something I never forgot: “Issur,”–that was my name then–”even a beggar must give to another beggar who needs it more than he does.”

The fight against oppression and tyranny depicted in Spartacus is still going on all over the globe from Syria to Egypt to Iran.

I was an American movie star whose pictures were seen all around the world. This gave me the opportunity to do something for my country that most Americans couldn’t do. So I became an Ambassador of Goodwill for the State Department and traveled to 40 countries talking about America. I wasn’t viewed as a Democrat or a Republican. They only saw me as an American. By the way, I paid all my own expenses–I didn’t want anyone to say that Kirk Douglas traveled abroad on the taxpayers’ dime.

But you do not need to be a movie star to stand up for basic human freedom. The fight against oppression and tyranny depicted in Spartacus is still going on all over the globe from Syria to Egypt to Iran. Even the Russians are once again facing the threat of a popular uprising.

I believe much of the divisiveness in the world is caused by religious fanaticism, even in the time of Spartacus when they worshiped many gods. As you study history, you find that millions of people have been killed because of religious divisions based on false orthodoxy, not genuine spirituality.

After 95 years on this planet, I have come to the conclusion that the human spirit can never be crushed, no matter how cruel the oppressor or fanatic the belief. If we remember that simple truth–and act on it every day in small ways and sometimes in large movements–then freedom will ultimately win.

We are all Spartacus.

The start is what stops most people.

~Don Shula

Former NFL Coach

Far better to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checked by failure…than to rank with poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they choose to live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”

– Theodore Roosevelt ….with a few edits

Defeat is temporary, giving up makes it permanent.”

– Marilyn Von Savant …with a few edits

When we do the best we can,

we never know what miracle occurs in our life, or in the life of another.

— Helen Keller (1880-1968) American Writer

Sustained effort – not strength or intelligence –

is the key to realizing our potential.

~Sir Winston Churchill …with a few edits

If you believe in yourself and have courage, determination, dedication, and competitive drive and if you are willing to sacrifice for things that are worthwhile, anything can be done.
– Vince Lombardi …with a few edits

At a Costa Rica Rain Forest

Thanks for the good you are doing today

And the prayers you are saying today,

Particularly the prayers for those

Going in harm’s way on your behalf.

Move forward …resolute and confident.

Tom O’Connor

The Tom O’Connor Group
Economic and Management Consultants
A Veteran-Owned Company
Tom
571 332 2349


www.TomOConnorGroup.com

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