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Archive for November, 2015

Bus 7 and the Grandma in the Window

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DailyGood News That Inspires

November 30, 2015

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Bus 7 and the Grandma in the Window

Better keep yourself clean and bright. You are the window through which you must see the world.

– George Bernard Shaw –

Bus 7 and the Grandma in the Window

She was known to the children in Bus 7 simply as ‘Grandma in the window’. Their connection was forged by the daily waves they exchanged as their bus crossed her home. A connection so deep that when the 93-yr-old missed her waving ‘vigil’ the children demanded the bus driver stop. It turned out that their dear friend had suffered a debilitating stroke. While she convalesced at a local care facility, the children wanted to make sure she knew they were still there and waiting to welcome her home…Read on for the heartwarming story of what happened next. { read more }

Be The Change

Imagine how a simple gesture can help to right another’s day. And, then? Put your compassion into action.

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My Daughter Malala

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DailyGood News That Inspires

November 29, 2015

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My Daughter Malala

When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful.

– Malala Yousafzai –

My Daughter Malala

Pakistani educator Ziauddin Yousafzai reminds the world of a simple truth that many don’t want to hear: Women and men deserve equal opportunities for education, autonomy, an independent identity. In this TED talk, Yousafzai tells stories from his own life and the life of his daughter, Malala, who was shot in the head at point blank range by the Taliban in 2012 simply for daring to go to school. Yousafzai encourages those living in patriarchal societies to break a few norms to abolish discriminatory laws. In his school, girls unlearn the lesson of obedience and boys unlearn the lesson of honor. “Why is my daughter so strong?” Yousafzai asks. “Because I did not clip her wings.” { read more }

Be The Change

Empower a child in your life to reach their full potential by not clipping their wings.

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Kindness Weekly: Hope in the World

KindSpring.org: Small Acts That Change the World

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For over a decade the KindSpring community has focused on inner transformation, while collectively changing the world with generosity, gratitude, and trust. We are 100% volunteer-run and totally non-commercial. KindSpring is a labor of love.

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“Hope is not a dream but a way of making dreams become reality.” –L.J.Suenens

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November 28, 2015

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space EditorEditor’s note: Dear Friends, Each of the stories this week feels like a bright sign of hope in the world. It is deeply inspiring to see complete strangers help one another as if they were the closest of friends. As we head into Day 6 of the 21-Day Gratitude Challenge, I feel so grateful that these genuine people, with big hearts, exist in our world. –Guri space
space Smile Big space
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Small Acts of Kindness

space jsmc10 wrote: “Today, Jon, my mum and I donated 2 cans of soup, 2 cans of beans and 1 can of mushy peas to our local food bank. It’s not much but at least it’s something ð”
space prgordon49 wrote: “Called my brother Lazell to tell him I love him”
space mletherer wrote: “I had my children bring their friends home to practice playing their instruments for band then we all baked Christmas cookies.”
space Give Freely space
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Featured Kindness Stories

Story1 She found a bone marrow transplant donor in Germany who was about to get married.
Story2 In line at Starbucks, she overheard this conversation and knew what she had to do.
Story3 His scooter broke down in a bad neighborhood and she went the extra mile to get him home.
space Love Unconditionally space
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Idea of the Week

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For more ideas, visit the ideas section of our website.
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The Problem of Precrastination

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November 28, 2015

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The Problem of Precrastination

It’s better to go slow in the the right direction than to go fast in the wrong direction.

– Simon Sinek –

The Problem of Precrastination

We all know that habitually putting tasks off for a later time can be problematic. But what about getting tasks done more quickly than is necessary? Recent research out of Pennsylvania State University documents a phenomenon called “precastination,” a tendency to hastily complete tasks in order to get them over with. This article recounts several studies that illuminate the problems with precastination and ways to counter them. { read more }

Be The Change

Take an important task you have to complete and break it into smaller pieces so you can spend enough time making sure you put your best into the work.

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Conversational Leadership: Thinking Together for a Change

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November 27, 2015

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Conversational Leadership: Thinking Together for a Change

The fundamental law of human beings is interdependence. A person is a person through other persons.

– Archbishop Desmond Tutu –

Conversational Leadership: Thinking Together for a Change

If our conversations and personal relations are at the heart of our work, then how do we contribute to or take energy away from this natural process? Are we using the intelligence of just a few people instead of hundreds or thousands? What if increasing the success of efforts to cut costs and make organizations more efficient, innovative, and competitive depended on focusing on the core process of conversation and meaning-making through which we as human beings have always co-evolved new realities? The authors in this article ask and seek to answer these and many such question, and provide a very helpful framework of conversational leadership that we can each use in our daily lives. { read more }

Be The Change

Consider how you might use, and support the use of, conversations to create tipping points of change — at home, or at the workplace.

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Thanksgiving for 84

This week’s inspiring video: Thanksgiving for 84
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Video of the Week

Nov 26, 2015
Thanksgiving for 84

Thanksgiving for 84

Scott Macaulay remembers how, 25 years ago, he started an annual holiday dinner for strangers who had nowhere else to go. “I put an ad in the local paper and offered to cook Thanksgiving dinner for twelve people.” Last year, 84 people showed up. Scott’s goal every year is to have no one show up. That would mean that everyone had somewhere else to go.
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The Way We Think About Work Is Broken

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November 26, 2015

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The Way We Think About Work Is Broken

We design human nature by designing the institutions within which people live and work.

– Barry Schwartz –

The Way We Think About Work Is Broken

What makes work satisfying? In this TED talk, psychologist Barry Schwartz argues that there are intangible values that our current way of thinking about work simply ignores. He describes how the ideas human beings create shape human nature and that it is time to revisit our ideas about the way we work. { read more }

Be The Change

What idea have you held about human nature that has shaped the way you treat others? Can you imagine your interactions with others being different if you had a different perception of human nature?

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Desert Solitaire: A Love Letter to Solitude

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November 25, 2015

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Desert Solitaire: A Love Letter to Solitude

True solitude is found in the wild places, where one is without human obligation. One’s inner voices become audible…In consequence, one responds more clearly to other lives.

– Wendell Berry –

Desert Solitaire: A Love Letter to Solitude

In the late 1950s, Edward Abbey became a seasonal park ranger at Arches National Monument in Utah’s Moab desert. Between April and September, between the canyons and the pages of his journal, he found a great many of the things we spend our lives looking for. His book maps the maze of the interior landscape as he wanders the expanse of the exterior. { read more }

Be The Change

Take a few minutes to wipe your mind clean of thoughts about past and future, and wait for the unknown messages the present moment will bring you.

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Gratitude: Good for the Soul — and Heart

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November 24, 2015

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Gratitude: Good for the Soul -- and Heart

Gratitude is a quality similar to electricity: it must be produced and discharged and used up in order to exist at all.

– William Faulkener –

Gratitude: Good for the Soul — and Heart

As we launch into Thanksgiving week, consider this: Research shows that feeling grateful doesn’t just make you feel good. It also helps — literally helps — the heart. A positive mental attitude is good for your heart. It fends off depression, stress and anxiety, which can increase the risk of heart disease, says Paul Mills, a professor of family medicine and public health at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine. Mills specializes in disease processes and has been researching behavior and heart health for decades. He wondered if the very specific feeling of gratitude made a difference, too. So he did a study… { read more }

Be The Change

KindSpring’s 21-Day Gratitude Challenge starts tomorrow. Step up in gratefulness this holiday season and sign up here! { more }

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Awakin Weekly: I Awaken Before Dawn

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I Awaken Before Dawn
by Helen Moore

[Listen to Audio!]

tow2.jpgI awaken before dawn, go into the kitchen and fix a cup of tea.
I light the candle and sit in its glow on the meditation cushion.
Taking my cup in both hands, I lift it to my Lord and give thanks.
The feel of the cup against my palms brings the potter to mind
and I offer a blessing for his hands.

I give thanks for the clay, the glaze and the kiln.
I take a sip and follow the warmth into my body.
I offer a blessing for those who brought electricity to my home,
who dug the ditches for the lines,
who built my home and put in the wires,
who made my tea kettle and brought me water to fill it.

I take a sip and bless the people in India or China who grew the tea,
cultivated it, picked and dried the leaves, took it to market,
handled it through the many transactions to bring it to my home.
I take a sip and bless those people in Florida, California or Central America
who grew the tree that blossomed into flowers.

I give thanks for the warmth of the sun and the rain which turned the blossoms into lemons,
and I bless the hands that picked the fruit, sorted it, touched it as it traveled from the orchard to my table.
I take another sip and bless the hands of those who provided the sugar
which sweetened the tea, harvested the cane, processed it,
bagged it and sent it on its way to me.

I take another sip and lift my cup in gratitude as I feel the interconnection of my body now with theirs,
my blood now with theirs,
my bones now with theirs,
and my heart fills with love for all of creation.

I give thanks.

About the Author: Helen Moore teaches yoga with mind, body, and spirit, with an attitude of gratitude. She lives a simple life in Lexington, Virginia with her two small dogs, who awe her with their capacity for love and compassion every day.

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I Awaken Before Dawn
What do you feel grateful for? Can you share a story of a time you realized how much your life was supported by the work of others? What practice helps you grow in gratitude?
Liz Helgesen wrote: Reading this piece (but sipping coffee :)) brought me right to the minutia of my life with gratitude for every tiny detail, every breath, each beat of my heart. For every heart beat of my…
Jagdish P Dave wrote: This is a wonderful ode to gratitude. It shows how we are connected with each other. Many unseen hands have been instrumental in creating the cup and creating tea. A cup of tea is a symbol…
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Back in 1997, one person started sending this simple “meditation reminder” to a few friends. Soon after, “Wednesdays” started, ServiceSpace blossomed, and the humble experiments of service took a life of its own. If you’d like to start an Awakin gathering in your area, we’d be happy to help you get started.

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