- Thoughts for inspired living

March 30, 2009

Going, Going, Gone!

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 7:06 am

Something has walked out the door and my sense is it’s never coming back.

It’s never been in abundant supply to begin with and you’ve NEVER witnessed it in politics.

It’s a special phrase that you’ll occasionally hear in sports, but hardly ever in real life.

It’s as though glue forms in our mouth when our mind wants to issue these words. What comes out instead is something that sounds like a PR firm was consulted before we spoke.

These are magic words. They aren’t as magical as “I’m sorry,” but they could play the lounge in Vegas.

What is this phrase that has made a mass exodus from our culture?


When did we hop off the train of personal responsibility? What stops us from pointing a finger in our own direction? This is a pandemic. If you want to make huge amounts of money in this challenging economy, start selling scapegoats. There’s no seeming end for their demand.

Thesaurus words like “Mitigate” and “Obfuscate” take the place of two words that say it all – MY BAD!

I know Facebook folks are famous for joining groups. I want to form a new one – BRING BACK “MY BAD”!

Our painted faces are so afraid of rain that “MY BAD” has become a thunderstorm that’s to be avoided at all costs. Did you ever notice how good the air smells after a thunderstorm?

MY BAD is good for what ails you.

Test it out today to be sure that I’m not making this up. Start small and work your way up, but make the commitment today to take back your personal responsibility and find a way to say, MY BAD!

All the best,



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March 27, 2009


Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 8:07 am

I wonder if anyone ever noticed that the acronym TGIF, if rearranged, spells GIFT.

Like many, I share the cultural glee associated with Friday. It is the doorway to the weekend where many people have the opportunity to enjoy many things including relaxing and recharging.

Too often, people use the gift of weekend free time to cram in lots of activity that leaves them more drained when Monday again rolls around. Then the cycle repeats every Friday at quitting time.

“Doing it all” is like trying to eat a whole cow at once, yet that’s what too many attempt to do almost every weekend. It takes its toll.

On top of that, what many people don’t realize is that they tire themselves out more mentally than physically. The thought machine is the biggest waster of energy that we own. It’s the incessant talk that drives us to the abundant activity that’s supposedly going to fill our life with what’s missing.

There is nothing missing.

We can’t wait to get “there” so we can find what’s eluding us. Reminds me of a story . . .

One of the pet peeves I have with radio broadcasters is them telling their listeners when their shift ends. Let’s pretend their time slot is from 3 until 7 p.m. About 3:10, I will hear them say, “I’ll be here until 7 tonight.” They may as well have said, “I’d rather be anyplace than here” because that’s exactly what they are communicating.

When they get to 7 O’clock, life will begin, or so they think.

Pulling yourself out of the moment takes massive energy. You drain yourself anytime that you begin thinking that another moment will be better than this one. You make your job 10 times harder than it has to be.

Yes, enjoy the heck out of your weekend, just don’t live for it. Doing so robs you of precious energy and has you miss your share of peaceful, recharging moments that can be enjoyed any day of the week, even at work.

If you suffer from the “Sunday night dreads,” getting out of your head and into the moment is the best thing you can do for your energy level, your well being and your peace of mind.

When you give yourself the gift of mental peace, you’ll turn every day into TGIF.

All the best,


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March 26, 2009


Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 6:04 am

This is a short story on some “E” words.

“Envy” is wanting what somebody else has and “Emulate” is an attempt to equal somebody or something.

One is a pure head trip; the other an excursion into fruitful action.

Envy implies that it’s only available to someone else, not you. This may cause you to dislike the person who has what you want. It will often cause some to try and take it away from another. Envy will always deliver a feeling of lack within you. It also sets up a carrot and stick mindset with you chasing what you cannot get for a lifetime.

Envy serves no purpose. It’s a self destructive poison that has no upside.

Enter emulation.

I don’t know where I first encountered the phrase but I remember having a profound shift when I read, “If you want what someone else has, don’t envy them; emulate them.”

That’s the day envy left my life. It’s rather freeing. It frees up energy to begin the process of emulation.

This is why mentoring is so helpful. When you find a mentor, you’re being tutored in replicating the steps they’ve taken to achieve similar results. Everyone has access to a mentor. They don’t even have to be living for you to benefit.

Successful people have recipes for success. Emulating them is a two step process:

  1. Find their recipe.
  2. Follow it.

In the case of notable people who have passed on, they most likely have left some literature behind. Autobiographies are chuck filled with tasty recipes. You may have to search a little harder if they haven’t spelled it out, but the recipe is there.

Others have written step-by-step books which outline precisely what they did to get what they got.

Here is a secret. All the recipes work; you just have to use them.

Here’s the secret to failure: Take shortcuts with the recipe.

Reminds me of a story . . .

Many years ago I was hired to consult a radio station that had very talented, yet undisciplined, personalities. There was no formula in place for success. It was like a football team where each player had a different playbook. My job was to institute a recipe that put people on the same page and get the most out of their talent level.

It was met with a lot of resistance. Highly talented, highly compensated people were miffed that I was asking them to do basic stuff. My explanation was: “Show me that you can do this and then we’ll expand to the next level.” It wasn’t that they didn’t know how to do what I was asking; they had just forgotten that it was necessary. They were leaving basic ingredients out of the recipe and the cake was flat.

There are no shortcuts to success yet emulation will get you there quicker.

Don’t envy a recipe book – use it. Find one that’s appealing to you and follow it to the letter. Once you become adept at automating the basics, then you can improvise and make life even tastier for you and those who follow in your footsteps.

All the best,


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March 25, 2009

The Future

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 8:07 am

At first, it was hard for me to accept that the future doesn’t exist. “Tomorrow or one minute from now is the future” was my logical retort. Then it dawned on me, the future is just a continuation of the present, just as the present is a continuation of the past. There really is only one moment – the one you’re in now. Some pretty heady stuff!

Now is your window of opportunity. This wisdom has been offered before. Benjamin Franklin reminded us, “Don’t put off ’til tomorrow that which you can do today.” Many have used that mantra as a prescription to combat laziness. It contains more truth than that.

The Grasshopper checked in with this: “Your portal to the future is the present moment.”

It seems that any notion of the future is tied to the past somehow. NLP pioneer, Richard Bandler underscored that idea when he said, “When people don’t deal with the past as if it’s over, then they’re not free to go into the future.”

The only time to deal with the past, to which Bandler refers, is right now. The only time to deal with any imagined future is right now. The only moment that ever exists is the one you’re in right now. It’s the only moment where change can happen.

We get caught up in the construct of time that tells us we have more time than we have. We spend our time living in one of two fantasylands – the past or the future. On one hand, we get frustrated when the next moment doesn’t look any different than this one. We equally annoy ourselves when we compare this moment to our 8 x 10 glossies of the past and it doesn’t match up.

The common connection to past and future is right now. Right now is your future. Right now is the only time you can outgrow your past.

The opportunity for growth is available to each and every one of us right now.

The surest route to stagnation is staying stuck in the past or future.

Have all the reveries of the past that you desire and all the visions of the future that you can handle. They can act as fodder for change. But don’t confuse the musings for the action that’s necessary. That action can only take place in the moment you’re in. The past moments are over and the future moments don’t exist. Your window of opportunity is only open in one moment – right now.

What are you doing with this moment?

All the best,


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March 24, 2009

All or Nothing

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 7:35 am

“In for a dime, in for a dollar” the old expression goes.

How much are you wagering?

Are you wagering all or nothing? I’m betting on nothing.

All is too risky. Nothing is the better bet.

Does this mean not to gamble? No, it means to play the odds.

The person who wants it all will be disappointed because, if and when they get it all, they will want more. It turns out to be more of the same.

There is only so much of all a person can take before they long for nothing.

If life is a chase, you will attempt to get it all. If life is moment to moment mindfulness, you find the mother lode of nothing.

Where does most of your frustration come from? If you examine it, it will be some thwarted attempt at getting it all. If it’s something out there that’s eluding you, it’s part of the “all” package. The thinking goes like this: “When I acquire that, I will be happy, satisfied, at peace.” That’s Fool’s Gold.

When your quest is for no-thing, you discover the source that is responsible for everything that shows up in the world of all.

The only question you have to ask yourself is, “Do I want a specific treasure or do I want the Genie?”

In other words, do you want all or nothing?

If you’re a younger reader, chances are you want it all. No amount of convincing from me or anyone else will shift your focus. It will shift on its own. Some will have to wait until they are dying for nothing to show up, but show up it will.

The chase is on, early on. We are so busy running after it all that we don’t see the point in stopping. Some carry that chase with them their whole life, only to eventually wind up at the same place they could have been at years before had they discovered nothing.

There are no things in the land of nothing, yet all things are created here.

Don’t throw away your wish list or your bucket list. Those are wonderful things to have to enhance your life situation. When they become the focus of your life, life takes a back seat and is replaced by the frustration associated with the land of all.

We often hear, “You can’t take it with you.” No things are allowed in heaven. You’ll continue to create a living hell by chasing it all.

If this is touching you at some level, I encourage you to find your quiet place. The Grasshopper reminded us that Your thoughts aren’t allowed in heaven.”

Find the place where your mind calms and your body unwinds. If you need assistance, they are plenty of helpers available. Learn meditation, self-hypnosis, yoga, tai chi or anything else that allows you to enter the land of nothing.

It’s here that you will find the peace that is the mother of all creation.

Don’t be surprised at the surprises that just show up in the land of all when you make it a habit to visit the land of nothing.

All or nothing?

Nothing the best,


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March 23, 2009


Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 6:20 am

The Grasshopper
was alive and well over the weekend and had this to offer:

“If you stop risking, plan on losing.”

I’m not sure he would have offered that same advice to the late Evel Knievel, but he offered it to us.

My sense is the message is different than “No risk, no reward.” That message says that if you don’t risk you won’t reap the bounty. The Grasshopper’s reminder implies that, but also assures that you won’t stay status quo, you’ll lose.

What is it that you will lose? That which you are unwilling to risk.

My favorite story from the bible is the Parable of the Talents. It tells of a master who gives three servants a certain amount of wealth before heading out on a trip. When he returns he asked what they did with it. Two of the three had invested and doubled their money. The third buried his in the ground. Upon hearing this, the master took away his wealth and gave it to the other two. The lesson was that everyone that has much will be given more, and whoever that has a little, even the little that he has will be taken away.

What are you unwilling to risk?

What are you burying?

When you answer those questions, you have predicted your future. You know, in advance, what will be taken away from you.

You are the major asset in your life. What are you doing with that asset?

Life is a gift and many treat it like a rock rather than a pearl. It’s a burden to some, and notice, it’s taken from them quicker than others in one form or another.

The remedy is risk. Reminds me of a story . . .

I had a memorable great aunt named Mable who gave my father some excellent advice as a young man. My dad was considering building a house for the family and was worried about all the financial risk involved and sought his aunt’s advice. She was an experienced woman of means who said this to my Dad: “Jackie, bury yourself neck deep in horses**t and work your way out.” He took his aunt’s advice and used his talents and built our first house.

The old aphorism comes to mind: “If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.”

What talent do you have that the world needs to be treated to? If you keep tinkering with it in the basement, it’s never going to see the light of day and it will be taken away.

What if I risk and fail? Who hasn’t? Those who use failure as a millstone rather than a stepping stone will drown in their own cowardice.

Risk is necessary for growth. Risk is necessary at every age.

Complacency is the first sign of losing your life. It goes downhill from there rather quickly unless you risk.

What you’re unwilling to lose will be lost anyway unless you step out on the skinny branches and risk.

Life is a risky business.

All the best,


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March 20, 2009

Spring Cleaning

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 7:43 am

Today’s the day. Spring arrives!

There is something really special about springtime especially in areas that experience climate change as one season rolls into another.

It’s the time for clearing away and experiencing new growth.

There are many people who ascribe to the idea that clearing space in your home clears space in your mind. I’m one of those people.

My experience is that cleaning out a closet, an attic, a garage, a crawl space, kitchen cabinets, or a junk drawer has a corresponding effect in our mind.

I have never done one of these tasks where I haven’t experienced some sort of mental shift in an area of my life that was clogged.

The same thing happens for me when I do an outside project like thatching the lawn and sprinkling in seed, cutting back trees or bushes, or planting new flowers or shrubs.

Inside or outside, it becomes a spiritual practice.

I’m sure I could come up with some dazzling reasons why this works, but I’m more interested in the result than in the “why and wherefore.”

You don’t have to get crazy with this and start cleaning everything because that will make it a chore and produce resistance. Start easy. Find something small that needs tending to. Perhaps you could clean off the top of your desk or clear out the broom closet. Look for a small catchall place that seems to be a magnet for clutter and disorganization and clean it up.

Then pay attention to your feelings. Aside from a feeling of accomplishment, you will notice a perceptible shift in your mindset.

Don’t believe me I could be making this up. Spring into action today or over the weekend and do one of these activities. Then pay attention to the release that goes on inside you. The worst thing that can happen is that you’ll have a cleaner house or a more attractive landscape.

There is a powerful upside to this practice.

You can also set an intention before embarking on your spring cleaning project. You may want to marry the intention to the completion of the project. For example, suppose you are wrestling with a problem in your mind that is claiming a lot of your attention. Your intention could be to have the problem solving portion of your mind work on a solution while you fully engage in your clean up activity.

Spring cleaning is a tool for cleansing of the mind making room for the growth of new ideas and new direction for your life.

Who knew that sweeping the driveway could provide the answer to your problem?

Enjoy Spring!


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March 19, 2009

Picture Perfect

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 8:38 am

When you look through just about any magazine, the pictures in the advertisements are perfect. The amount of expertise it took to get them that way is admirable, but, for the most part, they are manufactured reality.

If we could only get our kitchen, bathroom, lawn, garden, hair, body, etc. to look like the ones in the ads, everything would be perfect.

Perfect is a mind made condition that has us strive for something that’s unattainable.

Perfection is the Holy Grail that’s filled with holes.

Here is a conundrum: Everything we do is imperfect and perfect alike.

Being human is being imperfect. There are flaws in real life that cannot be airbrushed away. Yet, The Grasshopper says that Reality is Perfection.” That means that everything that happens is perfect. It’s perfect because it’s the only way it can be. What happened, happened.

So the imperfection that is part of being human is our penchant to rail against reality which is perfect.

I think the closest a human being can get to being perfect is to respond to reality.

We as a species are addicted to reaction. That’s about as imperfect as it gets. Something happens and we have a conditioned reaction to it, usually the same one we had last time. We are stuck in a cycle of imperfect reaction which delivers the same out of focus solutions and stalemates.

You have an opportunity to be as perfect as you can be every waking moment of every day. It begins with choosing a response to reality.

Again, I quote The Grasshopper who just this morning said, “Free will isn’t free.” You have to work for it.

The work entails choosing a response to reality instead of running the same reaction. Where is the free will in letting the same reaction to reality happen again? That’s automatic pilot, not free will.

Free will enters the picture when you begin to notice that you are reacting and you choose a response instead.

Reminds me of a story . . .

I once worked for a very evil man. He was part mad scientist and part Neanderthal. He was part owner/operator of a radio station I worked for. The bookkeeper told me that 236 people worked for him in 5 years. This was a small Mom & Pop radio station, so that’s a lot of people in a short time span. He hired and fired more than he changed his socks. He was as arbitrary as a person could be and this made for a work environment that was extremely challenging.

I was one of the longer term employees. I lasted 6 months. Oh, by the way, he fired me over the phone. The good news for me was that I was able to gain employment outside of radio within a few weeks, but my desire was to get back into radio full time. 6 weeks later the phone rang and it’s my ex boss wanting to know if I could come back temporarily to fill in for the guy he just fired who replaced me 6 weeks before. It would only be until he could find a replacement for him.

I remember it like it was yesterday. I pulled the receiver away from my ear and looked at the phone and remember these high volume words about to leave my lips “FU.” Free will kicked in a split second later and I said this F-word instead – “Fine.”

It was the best Christmas ever. We had one more unemployment check coming in, my wife had gotten a job, I kept the job outside of radio and now I had the radio job too. The better news is that one of the shows I did during this period was heard by another program director in another city who offered me a full time job in radio. The ability to respond to reality rather than react saved the day.

You might say it was perfect.

All the best,


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March 18, 2009


Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 6:57 am

Disdain: Scorn, contempt, derision, condescension, disparagement, disregard – to regard somebody or something as not worthy of respect.

We all contain disdain.

How often it comes out to play is a barometer of how well we are playing with others. Its frequency of appearance can also be a predictor of our health and well being.

Setting politics aside and just observing behavior, is there any doubt in anyone’s mind that former Vice President Dick Cheney is a poster boy for disdain? Watch him speak with the sound turned down on the TV, so you don’t let his words influence your observation and assessment of his demeanor. He is consumed with it.

If you have ever seen radio personality, Don Imus, you get to witness the same facial contortions of contempt.

Watch some footage of the trial of Saddam Hussein and witness the derision he exudes.

All of these people have/had friends. There is something about them that certain people like or admire, but their number of playground skirmishes indicates it’s more prudent to avoid them. They’re hard to get close to.

What is missed is how this mindset plays havoc with your insides. I have yet to meet a person who is filled with disdain that doesn’t have some kind of internal matching component.

Don’t believe me, prove it to yourself. Do your best impression of their facial expressions and then pay attention to how your body feels. Is it constricted in a certain area? I trust you will find there is a correlation between what shows up on your face and what’s happening in your body.

I don’t have clinical data to back up my contention of accuracy, only a lifetime of observation.

Let’s pretend that it’s you who is crammed with condescension. How will you know? Ask someone. They’ll tell you in a New York minute. You can also discover it yourself by paying attention to how constricted your body feels when you contort your face.

What do you do with that health robbing, people repelling pattern of behavior?

You begin by noticing it. Start to notice when your face contorts and you begin snarling. That’s your cue to take a nice comfortable breath and sigh it out. This is built in pattern interrupt for human beings. It’s a tension release. There is quite a bit of tension, both external and internal, that goes along with disdain. You may need to take a few more breaths than the average bear to notice a change in your demeanor.

Also, recognize that the facial expression you’re using is really posturing. You want people to see that you’re disdainful. You want them to know you are right and they are wrong. What you may not have noticed is that it isn’t working for you – inside or outside.

Disdain never convinces anyone to come over to your side and it plays havoc with your bodily system and internal organs.

The Grasshopper has told us that some people would rather be right than happy. What he didn’t mention, as overtly, is that some people would rather be dead than happy.

Disdain equals demise. The sooner you recognize and remedy that, the sooner your health and demeanor improve.

Like all diseases, it’s best if you catch it early.

Borrowing a phrase from my late Uncle Vinson, “Disdain is a pain in the drain.”

All the best,


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March 17, 2009

An Irish Tail

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 7:28 am

I once knew an Irish Lass

Her eyes they did twinkle

Until she drank the Ale of Bass

My God it made her tinkle

Even in her impaired condition

She wouldn’t let me pet her

She ignored my every petition

This purebred Irish Setter

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!



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