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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

5 Reasons to Implement Student-Involved Energy Audits and Improvements in K12 Schools

Outlet Vampire 1Image by PNNL - Pacific Northwest National Laboratory via FlickrVampires in the Classroom?
No, I'm not writing about Twilight, although my teenage daughter would definitely approve.
We're discussing conducting a school wide energy audit as part of the module I do on Excel spreadsheets. By purchasing voltage meters that tell us how much energy each device consumes and evaluating some of the new reduced energy consumption power meters -- aptly called "vampires" because they suck down the energy consumption requirements of devices plugged into them.
It is really time to look at our energy consumption at schools and truly implement some methods to reduce energy consumption.
5 Reasons to Implement Student-Involved Energy Audits and Improvements in K12 Schools

1 - We are modeling for the future.
Children need to see us grappling with this issue. They don't do what we say, they do what we DO.
2 - Create teachable moments by involving students
Students can be involved in this. Auditing energy requirements. Graphing consumption. Created charts. Doing research. Presenting findings to committees of parents and administrators. Getting creative. This sort of thing is often done by EAST Program initiatives in Arkansas (See Hampton East's Student Energy Team Initiative) and with great success and Bucktown Elementary made the news with their wind turbine on the room.
If you want to teach it -- do it. 

3- Foster STEM Project based learning.
If you want the ideal STEM PBL project - this is it! Science Technology, Engineering and Math require application to become real. Often it is this sort of project that turns kids onto a technical education.  Make these subjects real.

4 - The habits kids have now become lifelong.
Good intentions don't create good habits. Just look at the 60% of us in the US who are obese. (I'm so excited that I will no longer be considered "obese" in about 4 pounds!)
We are leaving lights on, leaving computers on, wasting energy left and right. What does that tell our students? It tells them that we talk about being environmentally friendly but don't really believe it.  Kids want real genuine commitment.

The society of tomorrow will reap the habits we sow into their lives and minds today.(Programs like Pacific Light and Gas' Energenius Program have good information.)

5 - It can save money.

In the long run it can save money! Energy audits are just good business sense and should be done whether students are involved or not.

Some things we're going to look at: X.10 technology for automating electrical devices, vampires and "green" power devices, auditing power settings of computers, motion activated lighting, as well as possibilities of solar. It may or may not happen, but with my students involved - who knows?
Time to get busy.
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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tips to Overcome Conversation Malfunction

Talking in the evening. Porto Covo, PortugalImage via Wikipedia
mostly written Saturday, Sept 25
Conversation Malfunction
Boy, I'm shocked and upset.  Not really sure how this happened, but one reason I love disqus is that it sends comments to my email box and I reply to the comment and it approves the comment and the posts my response. It makes conversation easy!

Well, I've had a little trouble signing into disqus and this morning as I sit here in the lobby of the Hampton Inn waiting to go to the Georgia Tech ballgame at noon, I am doing what I do when I go on vacation -- conversations on my blog.

So, I decided to log into disqus directly and make sure I hadn't missed anything! Well, it looks like disqus somehow did not receive and process my responses for the last three weeks and I had almost 100 comments in there!Upsetting!
If You're Not Seeing Conversation: Ask Yourself Why
So, I'd been wondering where the conversations had gone! There just weren't as many conversations happening. So, I'm glad that I went to disqus to see and hope that being up front with you will let you know that I value your comments and time!

I think that administrators of anything need to ask themselves why.

Why is no one coming into my office?  
Why is no one bringing things to me?  
Why do I hear about problems after everyone else already knows?
If conversation isn't happening with the key stakeholders in your school and you are an administrator - there is a reason why!

Functional Reasons?

There may be a functional reason:
  • Your assistant may be inadvertently giving out wrong "vibes" to those who try to set appointments.
  • You may not have time scheduled in your calendar for the conversations to happen.
  • You may have to seek out appointments and times with people with whom you need to keep good relations.
  • You may be sending off wrong body language that makes people afraid of interrupting you.
Bigger Reasons?
There may also be other reasons that should concern you more:
  • Your staff may have withdrawn from you and is disenfranchised.
  • Your staff may think you don't care.
  • Your staff may be unsupportive or feel dis-included.
  • Your staff MAY even genuinely like you and be concerned about all of the stress in your life so they try not to bother you.
Tips for Administrators on Promoting Conversation
I used to be a manager of a large cellular phone market and these were the things that best helped situations when I felt communication was breaking down:
  • Set Appointments to Listen.

    I had my assistant write everyone's name on a paper and set an appointment with a certain number each month so that by the end of the year I would have met with every staff member. Then, it started over. Sometimes the best cost savings came from a suggestion from the janitor. 

    The Content. This was not  a performance review and was not my turn to talk (until the end.) I listened, took notes, and asked questions.

    The Close. If  had a current emphasis, if appropriate, at the end, I always told them what an important member of the team that they were and told them that I knew I was busy and stretched thin but I wanted them to know if they had an issue to ask for an appointment and I would make it happen and that our goal was to be the leader in the market - no exceptions - we were going to be the leanest, friendliest, and best cell phone market in south Georgia!

    Morale improves when people feel listened to.  Now, superintendents may have to take a different approach and there are lots of staff members, but this is important. Listen.

  • Have Agenda-less Interactions

    If people always think that you have a reason, an agenda for speaking with them, they are distrustful of you when you come around.  Intentionally take time to just "be there" and converse with people who are around. I know you're busy, but sometimes you have to be a human being not just a human doing.

    In fact, most management books I've read state that the best managers have a genuine interest in their people. Take time to relate to your staff as humans. Laugh with them.  There is a reason the One Minute Manager Works - just walking around, interacting, and responding as things happen has influence.

  • Laugh at Yourself
    I know a person right now who is so uptight and so unable to laugh. Not someone I want to be around.

    This week I walked into the hall and saw a huge box with fluorescent lights in it.I saw some students snickering in the hall as they walked by. 

    When I looked at the box The light said "Glass - Handle It With Care" - however, the mailing label had been stuck squarely over the "GL" of the box.  I ran in the office and said.

    "Coach Ross. We have an x - rated box of light bulbs in the hall."

    We all laughed hilariously. Oh my goodness, we got a good one out of that. What was funniest is that I'm a pretty straight arrow and they thought it was hilarious that I was the one who found it.  I laughed too - it was so funny. 

    I know some teachers (not at my school) who would have gone to the front office with a prudish distressed look on their face to "report" the janitor for having a bad word in the hall.  Get over yourselves.  Laugh every day and laugh at yourself. It makes you human.

  • Be Efficient.

    I become hugely distressed when I meet with someone who is making promises to me and doesn't write a one down. I know that those promises will be buried in the graveyard of good intention.  Write things down or put into your organization system so you can act upon them.

  • Be Concise
    You tell teachers to change up things every 20 minutes. Realize that if you talk for more than 5 minutes that your teachers are thinking about what they are going to cook for dinner, that student situation that has them upset, or what they wish you'd do instead of talking while no one is listening? Of course, two or three will hang on your word and listen to every word and give you lots of positive reinforcement!

    Watch the guy "who falls asleep" as you speak.
    In the new essays just released from Mark Twain. Who is Mark Twain?  He talks about how he reads his books to a wide group of people but that the one he listens to most is the "guy who always falls asleep" because if he can keep him awake for more than 15 minutes then he's got a winner of a novel.

    (Kindle Loc 289 Mark Twain - clicking that link will open up Kindle and take you to that location if you have downloaded the book. It was free last time I checked.)

    Keep your eyes on "the guy who always falls asleep" -- that is your litmus test for the boring, unengaging factor.

    Rehearse your opener.
    If you're holding a meeting, I think you should rehearse your opener like you would a regular presentation. It is very important to communicate well with your team - chose the content of your opener and first five minutes well as that is all you're guaranteed to have.

    Many administrators start out of the gate with mindless chit chat and have lost the room before they get to the point. As a result, meetings don't cause action or inspiration.

  • Hold "Standing Meetings"

    Many administrators justify their existence through meetings.

    Meetings, if run poorly are one of the biggest wasters of time and resources in existence in the education system today.

    Meetings if run well are one of the biggest leveragers of time and resources in existence in the education system today.

    My husband is the engineering manager of one of the largest manufacturing plants in South Georgia and he holds daily standing meetings with about 20 of his staff.  Each person gives a brief 1 minute overview - here is what I'm doing, here are my obstacles, and here is what I need from you.

    My husband emerges 7 minutes later with an action list of what he can do to help his staff. He has a total of 140 people under his management but this one tool helps him do what he can do best: remove obstacles and cast vision for where they need to go.

    Hold STANDING meetings. Make your meetings more efficient. If people are finding every excuse to miss your meetings it is usually because they feel like the meetings are a waste of time.

  • Keep contextual lists.

    I used to keep a list of the meetings I'd be holding and each time someone brought me an issue for that meeting, I'd put it on the list for that meeting. Wherever possible, I'd let that person or someone else communicate it. Don't rely on your overtaxed brain.

    That one tiny announcement that you forgot may disenfranchise a key opinion leader on your staff. Details like this are important and your meetings are essential.  I keep a list of what to talk about at faculty meetings. We hold them early and I'm usually groggy and need the reminder.

    Keep lists for each meet in your planner or in evernote and add to them as people mention what needs to be there.

  • Lead

    Leadership is so very important. If you make excuses -- so will your staff. If you use time poorly - so will they. If you whine -- they will too. You set the stage. Lead by example.
Promoting Conversations From the Bottom Up
This to the staff members. Teachers, IT directors, staff, paraprofessionals, and sometimes parent volunteers - we need to promote conversations with our busy administrators that are productive and helpful.
Functional Reasons?
The conversations with your administrator may not be happening for functional reasons:
  • You may not be prepared for meetings you do have and ramble on incessantly about a litany of issues without getting to the point.
  • You may just "feel upset" and not have a clear, concise item that you are asking for.
  • You may ask for meetings all of the time and the administrator leaves them feeling drained, down, and hopeless because you presented no solutions.
Serious reasons you're not getting an audience?
Or there may be other, more serious reasons that your administrator may not be conversing with you:
  • You may be labeled. Your administrator may have "labeled" you because of the "company you keep" (do you hang out with the whiners and have guilt by association?) or because of a bad interaction you've had in the past.
  • You may be too quiet. You have to be persistent and doggedly determined to bring attention to the issues that are important. Some teachers cannot get appointments because they are not vocal, self-advocates who speak out. They'd rather quit than "rock the boat."
  • Your administrator may think you don't like him/her.
  • You may not know how to be a good self advocate.
Tips for Teachers on Promoting Conversation 
  • When you get the meeting use the time wisely. 

    The more "important" the person you're meeting with the more time you should spend preparing.  Be able to succinctly spell out the issue in a professional way. Ask Advice. Propose solutions. Don't vent.

    Rehearse. Be ready. Set a goal to take LESS time than you planned - this will get you an entrance next time.

  • Prepare an agenda

    I type a list of what I have to discuss with my boss and for items that need "yes/no" answers, I put a checkbox for yes no. He has a copy and I have a copy. When I leave 5 minutes later, he puts this in his file and he knows that we've accomplished 10 things.

  • Have Clarity.
    Know what you want out of a meeting. Have it crystal clear. WE all have a laundry list but if you decide to wash the laundry, your administrator will begin avoiding you.

  • Provide Positive Reinforcement.

    As a former "boss" myself it is a lonely job. If your administrator does something positive - anything positive, say thank you. They will know you're on their side and don't "hate them." Just make it honest.

  • Be honest.

    AS a boss, I was always wary of those who always agreed with me. I respected those who knew how to state their point and positively state why they disagreed with me. Good managers seek a variety of opinions. If you can succinctly give your perspective, you become valuable, needed, and an insider on opportunities to the ethical, wise administrator who seeks to avoid "groupthink."

  • Communication skills.

    Read books like "How to Win Friends and Influence People" or "How to Get Your Point Across in 30 seconds or less".  Brevity and powerful communication is a challenge for most of us teachers, me included. But these books improve things for me.
Learn to Open Up the Lines of Communication
Conversations need to happen. We are all busy. We all have preconceived notions. It is time to move ahead and learn. Here are some of the tips that help me. Please feel free to share your tips for opening up communication.
If All Else Fails
If all else fails -- READ A BOOK on the subject. here are a few of mine that have helped me.
Related Reading

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    Monday, September 27, 2010

    Win a free iPad: iHave Wise Eyes Contest

    The contest to win a free iPad for you as a teacher is still happening. ($500 in iTunes cards.) It is simple to enter.

    1. Leave a comment on the post announcing the contest.
      www.seemuchmore.com find one thing you liked or learned from the site and leave it in the comments.  (See tips above.) (Some great samples are the teacher's lounge, the Bill Nye Educational vids (click the microwave on the homepage) and the Printable Eye chart to print and use or to project on your interactive white board.  Contest Ends on September 30, 2010. Spread the word. This is a simple one to enter! ;-)

      Go to the
      VSP Visioncare website and learn something new about eyecare.  Come back to this blog post and leave a comment about what you learned and what you’re going to do to make sure your children or students are taking good care of their eyes. Also let us know the school and grade level where you teach. (You may use the template if you wish.)

    2. Tweet It.Tweet about the contest, linking to this post using the hashtag #visionEd

    3. Facebook Comment.Leave a message on VSP’s Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/VSPVisionCare

    4. Link to It.Write a blog post about vision or eye care linking back to SeeMuchMore.com in your post

     Join in! Tweet and share!
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    Why Aren't they Motivated? Does Looking at Dwight Schrute Give us the Answer?

    Hat tip to my dear friend Angela Maiers (I can't wait to keynote with her in Maine in two weeks!) for this great video about motivation. This is a quick, funny video to get conversations started.

    Administrators beware: sometimes the tasks teachers have in the classroom are mundane because the content is mundane.

    Alfie Kohn vs Dwight Schrute

    Monday, September 20, 2010

    Fun and Friends: Meeting People Face to Face at ISTE

    These teachers are not just my colleagues, they are now my friends. I trust them. We go through quite an experience together as we merge our classrooms. There is a very special comraderie. Looking forward to "meeting" new friends in this year's Flat Classroom and Digiteen projects.

    ***** Something I meant to post this summer, but wanted to share now. ******

    ISTE Fun and Friends
    One of the highlights of ISTE is meeting the many teachers, judges, friends, college professors, and authors who volunteer their time and participate in the Flat Classroom projects

    From ISTE: Vicki and Julie were very busy at ISTE last week with various  presentations and sessions including a 7-hour DigiTeacher  Workshop, Flat Classroom ‘Birds of a Feather’ and the ‘Seven  Steps to Flatten your Classroom’ (attended by over 200), a Digital Citizenship Presentation (Vicki with Anne Collier, Bronwyn Stuckey, and Marianne Malmstrom), a Diigo presentation (Julie Lindsay and Maggie Tsai) and a Wiki presentation (Adam Frey and Vicki Davis) and a few more we may have forgotten! ;-)

    Just wanted to share this picture snapped by Julie Lindsay
    Julie, Vicki,  Honor, Tanya and Leigh at the Flat Classroom 'Birds of a Feather' at  ISTE 2010, Denver USA

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    Sunday, September 19, 2010

    Bandwidth is the Library Card of the Modern Age

    The Internet is an increasing source of excellent quality video content. This video is an example - from National Geographic and their daily update:

    Diving in the Maya Sacred Pools
    gives UP TO DATE information on current discoveries in science. In this video, divers discuss how they have found some ancient artifacts in Belize and also you can see the fascinating way that they go through the bottom of a pool into an area where water comes out of the spring. You'd have to see it to believe it at the beginning! (So cool.)

    The point is that the Internet is our library and that between features like this and services like Discovery Streaming, you can have access to the video you need.

    I know schools that still have very slow Internet service. One school that has no Internet access (the administration believes it is a distraction.) The fact is that the payment for bandwidth is really a subscription fee.

    When you pay for the Internet you receive:
    • Streaming video
    • Streaming audio of all kinds
    • Access to live events with leaders in society
    • Tons of down-loadable resources
    • Free Lesson Plans
    • Access to your state's standards database
    • Free cloud-based software of all kinds
    • Access to other students and teachers around the world
    • free videoconferencing (skype)
    • free encyclopedias and databases such as the Encyclopedia of Life
    • and more.
     It befuddles me why schools would debate the cost of bandwidth if they look at all of the services that libraries often pay for. In fact, bandwidth is truly the library card of the modern age.

    We talk about the digital divide because those who do not have bandwidth are denied access. They cannot enter the library. Why would we intentionally keep people out when it is within our power to allow access? Why would we add barrier after barrier in our new card catalog by blocking educationally-beneficial sites.
    Why do we seem so afraid of learning? Yes, there are places that we should monitor and filter but often it seems that we are straining out gnats and swallowing camels by thinking that the only services that are worth anything must be paid for. How about just unfettered access to the Internet where teachers can request to have valid URL's unblocked.

    Modern Age Library Litmus Test

    Answer these questions to see if your school is truly allowing access to the modern library card of the world?
    1. If I have a specific site that I need to use for classroom use, I have the ability to request that the site be unblocked? (  ) 1 - Yes   (  ) 0 - No

    2. When I request for a site to be unblocked for a valid educational use, it typically takes:
    (  ) 5 - Same Day approval
    (  ) 4 - Next day
    (  ) 3 - Same Week
    (  ) 2 - Next Week
    (  ) 1 - Same month
    (  ) 0 - Are you kidding?

    3. Who approves your request for a website to be unblocked?
    (  ) 5 - I have a URL to unblock it myself by logging into the filter
    (  ) 4 - Curriculum
    (  ) 3 - Administration
    (  ) 2 - IT Department
    (  ) 1 - the office manager
    (  ) 0 - Are you kidding?

    4. When you find a useful site that is not blocked and begin using it heavily in the classroom, which is most likely to happen:
    (  ) 5 - Nothing
    (  ) 4 - Someone may ask me what is going on in my classroom.
    (  ) 3 - I will be E-mailed notifying me that if the site is not legitimate it will be blocked.
    (  ) 2 - IT department gives me grief about bandwidth
    (  ) 1 - It is blocked within days.
    (  ) 0 - It is blocked within hours.

    5. At my school we are:
    (  ) 5 - Encouraged to use Internet resources and have an open environment of sharing those that meet classroom standards.
    (  ) 4 - Encouraged to use Internet resources and some share the tools
    (  ) 3 - Internet resources are allowed but not encouraged.
    (  ) 2 -Approved resources are allowed, although very few are approved.
    (  ) 1 - using an intranet and everything must be on our local server.
    (  ) 0 - Not allowing Internet access.

    OK, so add up your numbers.  The maximum score is 21. If you're there -- wow, count yourself lucky. When you get down towards 10, you're really dealling with walls.  Less, than 10, and you're severely limited from accessing the "library" of the modern age.

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    Friday, September 17, 2010

    Tell Kids with Disabilities: YOU CAN! (Here's proof)

    Meet Iron Man: Scott Rigsby (The First Double Amputee to Complete an Iron Man in the World)

    I've blogged before about my friend and fellow alumnus of Westwood Schools, Scott Rigsby.  Scott is one of the most well known double amputees in the world because he is the first one to complete an Iron Man competition. He did this several years a go when it was even harder to do (technology has moved very quickly.)
    Scott has a book, Unthinkable, (rated 5 stars on Amazon!) on his unthinkable story of overcoming and achieving great things that truly fits with the message of our school and also this blog.
    For more on Scott or to book him for an assembly or program go to www.scottrigsby.com.
    Here, he stayed after the motivational portion of his speech to talk about the technology that makes his running happen. Also, is a very interesting discussion about the controversy about Oscar Pistorius and how Scott's work with researchers at Georgia Tech helped him overcome the ban of his participation in competition events.
    Scott gave me permission to share this on our school's youtube channel and also here with you. Many of you work with kids who are disabled in some way. Particularly those with disabilities requiring prostheses need no longer be limited but can indeed do the unthinkable. Scott is just one of the first who are doing this with raw determination. We also have to realize and discuss what it means when our students with prostheses begin to  to compete more widely in our mainstream sports.
    I'm encouraged and challenged by Scott!
    Scott Rigsby, Part 1

    Scott Rigsby, Part 2

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    Thursday, September 16, 2010

    Steve Jobs: How to live before you die
    This June 2005 commencement address from Steve Jobs to the graduates of Stanford University is quite refreshing to hear.  In it, he clearly discusses three pivotal times in his life:
    1. "Dropping Out" of college and taking a calligraphy class (which affected fonts on the personal computer)
    2. Image representing Steve Jobs as depicted in C...Image via CrunchBase
    3. Getting Fired by Apple (which led to his founding of NeXt, Pixar Animation studios and meeting his wife and one of the greatest things that happened to him, he says)
    4. His diagnosis and recovery from cancer.
    So, you wanna, be Steve?  Really?  Are you Sure?
    We look at someone like Steve Jobs and see him at his pinnacle - at the apex of his career and one that everyone wants to be.  But let me ask you this.  What would happen if:
    • Your child came to you and said they were dropping out of college?
    • You or your spouse got fired?
    • You got cancer?
    Because those three things would have to happen for you to be Steve Jobs.
    Add to it being unwanted by your mother and then not adopted by those who planned to adopt you because they wanted a girl -- also Steve Jobs.

    The Perfect Life
    We want all these "things."  We want perfection. The "perfect" life. The "perfect" events.

    Awakening in the Ashes of Failure
    But what we fail to realize is that greatness often emerges from the ashes of failure.
    The Indians used to burn off the forests because they knew they would be healthier and most good farmers do this as well. There has been a movement in some places to ban the burning of forests and what has happened is an incredible underbrush that chokes out life and everything in the forest and a dense, dead undergrowth that is like kindling for a fire. Many foresters tell me that humans are safer when forests are "managed" and that often means burning, although that is counterintuitive.

    "Don't be Trapped by Dogma"
    Steve says not to be "trapped by Dogma."  In a lot of ways, that is like the forest that isn't burned.
    Failure often clears the underbrush and we start over.
    But a lot of it depends on your perspective.

    "You Cannot Connect the Dots Until you Look Back"
    Jobs also says "you can't connect the dots until you look back" as he discussed how dropping out of college and that one calligraphy class influenced the very PC I'm typing this computer on. (Since, he so cheekily says - "Since PC's just copied the MAC."  ;-)

    One day, I'll be able to connect the dots in my own life and understand why Kip and I lost our life savings on a pecan grove going under water in a flood, or the other stresses and struggles of life.  It will make sense.

    The Winds of History
    As I was grading until late and then working on the Flat Classroom wikis the other night, I admit, I was struggling with some personal circumstances in my life.  As is my habit, I had a movie playing in the background and on Tuesday it was Gone with the Wind.

    Scarlette O'Hara was trying to come up with the $300 to pay for Tara and was doing everything she could to find the money. She was completely distraught and beside herself.

    I was surprised at how I could not empathize and it didn't bother me at all to see her plight, a far cry different from the times Kip and I had to run through the house to find change to get milk when we lost the farm.  Then, it was devestating.

    When I realized this, I said to myself,
    "But so many people couldn't pay bills after the civil war, it was everyone." 
    And then it hit me.
    "But so many cannot pay their bills now, it is almost everyone."
    John F. Kennedy was right when he said;
    "A rising tide raises all ships."
    In times of prosperity, many of us have prospered. In tough times, many have upsetting things happen. "Things are tough all over" as many say.  And in some ways they are.

    Victim or Victor?
    We are part of an age. We are part of changes that are happening. There are two choices as we deal with change -- have it done by you or two you.  Be the victor or the victim. That is the way change is.
    As my Computer Science class and I were discussing the obstacles to change, we began discussing a hypothetical man who ran a CD-making factory that stamped CD's and how his job would have been 10-15 years a go and what it might look like now after the winds of change and mp3 players have hit the market.
    We study history in a way that often depersonalizes the humans that lived it.  Sometimes I wonder who we think we are?

    People in the depression had it much tougher - I don't see many of us with our families wandering the streets looking for jobs or shanty towns of unemployed unhoused people cropping up in every city.  Some are there, but not everyone.

    Sure, things are tough.  But listen to the end of Jobs speech and you'll hear a very freeing thought.

    The End of it All
    Jobs talks about the inevitability of death and that it comes to us all. If we realize that fact and realize that we are "naked"  we might as well decide to have the "courage to follow our heart and intuition" or "stay hungry, and stay foolish" as he says.

    I think I've often been guilty of taking myself, my problems, and my own life way too seriously. Sure, I'm tired and exhausted so much of the time and have my problems like all of you reading this -- but really, I think it is time to burn some brush.

    I read and re-read a certain section of Brian Tracy's wonderful book, Focal Point, where he talks about  the Seven R's of Simplication:
    1. Rethinking
    2. Reevaluating
    3. Reorganizaing
    4. Restructuring
    5. Reengineering
    6. Reinventing
    7. Regaining Control
    Brian Tracy points out (kindle Loc 445)
    "Whenever you find yourself overwhelmed with too much to do and too little time, stop and think about your work. Stand back and ask yourself, "Could their be a better way?"
    Burn the Underbrush
    So, today, think about it.  Think about your life. What is working. What is not.  Are you willing to reinvent? Are you willing to admit something is not working?

    Sometimes we cannot live a life because we are paralyzed by the underbrush of circumstance and an unwillingness to move from where we're planted -- an unwillingness to burn away the things that aren't working -- so we become planted in our thoughts and lives and just let it go by -- we spend it where we are instead of evaluating if we really want to be where we are.  Some things we cannot change -- one thing we can - our own attitude.

    Today is a new day and you have one life to live.

    I think many of us would rather spend a life than live a life.
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