June 29, 2010

" Everyday Is A Winding Road " [High Quality] Sheryl Crow

Thought of this one coming down the mountain last week. Sure, life's complicated but how boring would it be if we knew what was around every twist, turn, & bend? Better to lay back, enjoy the show, and savor every sight, sound, taste, touch, & smell as if it were your last. Anything goes.

June 28, 2010

An Awakening

I remember the first time I heard someone say, "I don't know when it happened, where it happened, or even why. And I really don't care to know. It just is and life just gets better and better every day."

I was attending an AA meeting in Liberal, KS. in the fall of 2008 when I first heard that. At the time, I didn't think much of it. To me, they were just words. The gentleman who uttered these words had been sober for over five years. But then later, as I attended numerous meetings with this same individual present, he continued to repeat it. And then I heard more people echo the same thoughts over the next few months. I thought, this is weird. What's up with this?

Today I know. I can't tell you when, where, or why I began to "awaken" and frankly, I'm in total agreement with these people. I don't WANT to know. Everything continues to unfold just as these people were saying about their own lives. It happens every day and though I said I don't know when, where, or why, I'll tell you what my gut says. It started sometime in June 2009, shortly after I returned to Elkhart, KS. I had been gone exactly one year, back to prove to myself first, God, and those that I once dwelled with, who and what I truly was. I felt different, looked different, ACTED different. Then in July, I started to have these "moments" when I would wake up early in the morning and start typing out Facebook "notes", notes that I later learned were inspiring others. And speaking, as if I was in front of a crowd of people somewhere in the future, motivating their lives to something greater and more productive. Later in September, after returning from Tucson from a family gathering, one of my sisters who was there shared some photographs she had taken of me with her boyfriend. He knew exactly what I looked like in February 2008, when he and two of my sisters showed up one day at my home in Elkhart, shortly before I hit my own bottom. He took one look at my picture and said something I'll never forget: "Gus, its like a resurrection." Since then, there's been many more instances but one recently stands out. I went to Big Bear Lake, California late last week, a short two day trip to spend time alone with my thoughts and gather myself for seeking work after finishing the UCSD Paralegal program. It dawned on me right after I got back. I'm not just "smelling" the flowers now, I'm pulling them and everything else of life around me into my soul; every color, every scent, the sounds, the taste, and the touch of LIFE. It's an incredibly inspiring and nearly indescribable feeling. It's the spiritual awakening that's "happening."

What's clear to me now though, and this is what fascinates me, is the awakening is never over. It's not like you just "wake up" one day and BAM, you got it all figured out. It's very much like being born in fact. You never stop growing. Sure, your physical body stops at some point but it's the mind and your soul that continues to grow and it will never stop until you die. This is the beauty of life and it's very similar to how I've described it on my Facebook page from time to time: "Life isn't a sprint to the finish line, it's more like a never-ending marathon. There's a lot of potholes and we all need a little help along the way."

If everyone would remember that, would remember that growing is never over, that it's impossible to ever figure everything out about life, then it would keep all of us in a place where we need to be; humble, patient, curious, helpful, loving, truthful, all those things that we each value deeply in how we want to be treated, but take for granted in others. Not everyone feels or acts the same. Each one of us is on a different path in this marathon. Some of us have no idea on what it takes to make it, a few have some of the tools, and then there's others who have a treasure trove full of tools. What's important is we're all in this together. We're here on this planet to help one another, that's one of the reasons God created us in my opinion. To serve our fellow man. No one has the right to sit in judgment of another just because we've been more fortunate to have more tools to be successful in the journey, however you wish to describe it; a stable upbringing, education, successful careers, happy families, or material possessions. None of those things mean a thing if all we're doing is using them for ourselves.

What I've just described has been a huge part of my own "awakening." I'm blessed and fortunate enough to have a variety of tools at my disposal; a loving family growing up, a great education, a once highly successful career in banking, and of course what some would perceive as very tragic circumstances that occurred in late 2007 into early 2008. I've CHOSEN to use what could have been what some would feel would be the absolutely WORST thing to ever happen in their life to something that is, without question, hands down, the greatest asset I can have as a human being.

Putting all these components together then leads me to this conclusion. I'm here on this planet for a purpose. At one time I thought it was to raise a family, farm, and be a banker all my life. God didn't have that in mind though. He tossed a major curveball at me and instead of striking out and sulking back to the dugout, I've decided to follow his lead and take another stab at it, and only because he's given me a second chance. My purpose? To serve my fellow man in every way I know how, using all of the tools God has given me; intelligence, experience, education, and wisdom, all borne out of a half-century of incredible stories that I'm ready, anxious, and eager to share. I don't expect everyone to listen and I certainly don't have all the answers. Like I say all the time and like my Dad always told me, I'm going with gut instincts. In other words, my HEART and SOUL. Not fancy or clever words, just what's real, truthful, and sincere.


June 23, 2010

~ Ramblings ~

Ramblings is now a two month old spontaneous burst of thought. A creation made with no plan, no goal, just pure simple feelings and emotions. Looking back to when I woke that early morning on April 9th, 2010, I clearly remember sitting and looking at my computer, thinking something was about to "happen". Next thing I knew it did. First the website, http://www.gustoramblings.com/, and of course the blog to go with it, "Ramblings."

Here I am world. Two and a half months later, recently finished with the University of California San Diego accelerated legal program, 39 credit hours crammed into 12 weeks. Unbelievable, and words aren't adequate to describe EVERYTHING that has happened, and not only over the past three months since I arrived in SoCal, completing the "Escape from Elkhart." It obviously covers an exponential personal growth that began on "that date", June 5th, 2008.

But it goes back further than that, experiences that cover over 40 years and today, with over 2 years of sobriety under my belt, not one drop of alcohol tasted with these lips nor ingested into my body, the future is wide-open and the possibilities of what life might have to offer are unimaginable. I awake each day now and say two things and two things only. Thank you God for LIFE and FREEDOM. I intend to take neither for granted any more.

People have been asking me, what now? What are you going to do now that you're done with the primary mission you came here for? My answer is two-fold. First, obtain suitable employment within the legal field, take care of my children the best I possibly can, and hopefully live and dwell among people I can call "friend." People who value the same things I do; faith, honesty, courage, integrity, dignity, an appreciation for life itself and everything that comes with it, and most of all, a willingness and desire to serve my fellow man and mankind.

But the second one is one I had no idea would "happen"..... Ramblings. I realize now that this entire period of my life since June 5th, 2008, is starting to culminate and move into a path and destiny I never dreamed of. It involves the written word and sharing of knowledge in some way. Honestly, I still don't know but things continue to "happen" that keep me thinking writing is an integral part of my destiny. So, here's another example of a person that came into my life for a reason and again, it just "happened" :

Yesterday, I went outside to get coffee from the local vendor who has a stand located near the Encinitas library. By now, I know all of the people that work there by name as they do me. So as I was filling my cup, one of the part-time workers who works there, asked me what I was doing now that I'm done with school. I said "oh, job searching, facebooking, and blogging." She said, "really, what is it you blog about?" I said, "Life." She hesitated for just a moment then said, "give me your website, I'll take a look at it."

Turns out this nice lady has a very successful website development business that she operates herself full-time, developing and marketing web pages for small to mid-size companies in San Diego county, as well as common folks like me. She said she makes a good living at it and has lost track of how many clients she has, but I could tell from one of her "success stories" of a local business she helped, she's extremely good at what she does. For the next 10 minutes or so, she told me all sorts of things she could help me with in furthering, fostering, and developing "Ramblings" into something that might be of greater use to my fellow man.

An interesting development indeed, huh? People, places, things, and situations just continue to appear out of nowhere in my life, all for a reason, positive reasons, INSPIRING reasons. I guess I'll see what the tide brings in tomorrow......


June 22, 2010

~ Facebook ~

A friend and I were talking over the phone recently about this subject. It's one that's of particular interest to me since Facebook has been an integral part of my life since early 2009 and, to be quite honest, since it was the only real form of social outlet I had when I was "confined to living quarters" in my own home in Elkhart, KS. from late May 2009 until March 2010, prior to moving to Southern California. This is the part most people don't know about me. When I say "confined to living quarters" and "the only real form of social outlet I had", imagine those two statements in the most literal sense.

We were talking about some of the "posts" I put up and she said something that puts this entire forum into a much clearer perspective, at least for me. She said, "Gus, you realize the things you put out there reach a lot of people and sometimes the message you intend it to be isn't what's perceived or heard, especially some of your musical choices. It's kinda like Swiss cheese she said, there's so many holes you can navigate through, each one of them that leads to a different conclusion." I thought WOW, does that ever make sense! But, you know what? Like I told her, I'm going for it in every way, and not just Facebook, I'm going at life hard. For me, there's simply no other way to live!

After all, we all know that there are probably HUNDREDS of ways to describe Facebook, with all kinds of websites offering their own advice on how to use it, what to say, what not to say, the list is endless. And that doesn't even include the dozens of YouTube clips that parody Facebook. I could reference any of a number of those sources to describe it, but the way she put it makes "common sense" to me.

But I digress so back to the topic at hand. FACEBOOK. What is it to you? How do you use it? What purpose does it serve in your life? For many, I know that its a means of staying "in touch" with family and friends, if only just to see pictures of their loved ones and their families and to hear what's going on in their day to day lives. Others aren't nearly as active, they're "out there" but don't share much at all. They just simply sit back and observe. And then there's others like myself who see it as a powerful means of communication.

For example, I have a "friend" here in SoCal who does nothing but put up short video clips of funny stuff, things like dogs on surfboards and so on. Other times he puts up some really inspiring animal stories in video format that seem to "touch" people. But I've never seen him once put up a "status update" or have I rarely seen him make even a comment! He just puts up the clip and BAM, that's it! And that's fine, that's his gig, his way of communicating "what's on his mind."

Then there's those that use it to simply banter back and forth as a way to amuse themselves, putting up short bursts of humorous posts in whatever fashion and see where it goes. Here again, that's "their thing" and their way of having fun. I view it this way, "live and let live."

I could name other examples but what I'd really like to cover is how Facebook can be used as a way to REALLY reach out and touch people, to help them if possible, to provide some spark of inspiration from events or circumstances in their own life to others. For instance, one of my sisters is employed with a entity called The Kansas Sampler Foundation, whose sole purpose is to promote rural America and to try to provide positive ways for our rural towns to survive. She and others associated with this organization use Facebook as a platform to "spread their message" and its amazing what the results have been. POSITIVE results. To me, that's where I think some people are "missing the boat", as it were. Facebook can, and should be in my humble opinion, used for so much more than telling me how your daughter's dentist appointment went today, what you had for lunch, etc. Hell, I can find that out by simply calling you!

That's why I created "notes" within my Facebook profile nearly a year ago, notes created from my own journey from literally near death. At first, I had no idea what I was doing or where I was going with them. Once I started sharing those thoughts, I quickly discovered that people were really dialing in to what was going on inside of me. They were inspired and told me so. Obviously, SOMETHING was needed there. As time went on, with the help of someone who just "happened" into my life a long time ago, another candle within me that had been flickering for a very long time was suddenly sparked into a roaring fire. With her musical gifts, she showed me a world I had never known.

And this fire continues to grow even at this moment. One of the reasons I started "Ramblings" shortly after moving here this past March. I woke up one morning in early April and the idea just "hit me." Hey, why not start my own website? Honestly, to that point, I hadn't given it any planning at all. It "just happened."

My whole point with this story is this. However you view Facebook and how you choose to utilize it in your own life, always remember this. This is a free country and this forum is yours to use as you please, within the confines of what is considered socially acceptable behavior. My advice to you? Particularly those of you who are hesitant because you're shy, unsure, or uneasy? Show NO FEAR! It says right there on YOUR home page, "What's on your mind?" SAY IT! And, most of all, don't let other people's opinions, especially your close friends or relatives, influence your actions. If you want to come down with a bad case of MPS like me, "multiple posting syndrome", then by all means, DO IT!

Show me WHO YOU ARE. Show me your FEELINGS, your SOUL. That, my friends, is what Facebook should be about. Not all the day-to-day goings-on any of us can get by picking up the phone, so we can "reach out and touch" someone, and say "How are you? What's the weather like? How's the family?"

Don't misunderstand me, there's nothing wrong with that approach if that's what you choose to do. Here again, live and let live. But, you can "reach out and touch" a heck of a lot more people in a very inspiring and positive way if you would only try. Go with your heart and don't hold back! Trust me, you'll be happy you did!


June 17, 2010

feeling good-Michael Buble

I've posted and listened to hundreds of songs over the past year or so and if there is one that can accurately describe everything I feel about my life today, this one would be it. And not just with every single word of the lyrics, it's the FEELING and EMOTION he puts into this performance that reflects my own feelings and emotions. It's incredible.

June 15, 2010

Ebb & Flow

I've written and said many times "things happen for a reason." Most people think when they hear those words, of events in their lives, situations that come up, or circumstances placed into their lives. But the biggest of all is one perhaps many don't "see" in those words. People. Special people. People that come into your life for a reason. The key difference is how we react. We can of course react positively to the good that comes our way or, we can choose to react negatively if things "happen" that we perceive on their surface as not so good. It goes back to the old saying life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

When something "happens" in your life, whether it be a person, place, thing, or situation, some times what appears to be a HUGE negative can, in fact, be your biggest asset. It depends on your attitude. For instance, let's say you do or say something that you feel is the "right" thing and suddenly, for whatever reason, it turns out exactly opposite. What is your natural reaction? Do you get defensive? Does self-doubt come into your mind? Do you start having regrets? Or do you even get angry? Or do you look at it differently? Do you say to yourself, "Self? Maybe this happened for a reason? Now, what am I going to do about it? How am I going to react? What is my attitude going to be? Positive or negative?"

That "happened" to me today. The "old" me, the one who viewed life as a glass half-empty, it's not my fault, or this isn't fair would have immediately reacted in a negative way. But today, I CHOOSE to react in a positive way. By doing so, what would appear on the surface to be a huge negative in my life, something that can pull me back into old ways of thinking, or living in the past, suddenly turns into my greatest asset!

In other words, life is a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you choose to live and react positively with everything that comes into your sphere of being; people, places, things, or situations, chances are pretty darn good amazing and positive results will occur that will boggle your mind. Once you start doing that, get a taste of it, and go back for more, you will feel like a miner that has struck gold. You will literally LIVE and BREATHE for those moments. And you will never be able to get enough. That's LIVING! Its at that MOMENT you realize, that if you had to, you would drink sand to get to that oasis of positive water of living.

Life is like water in that way. There's an ebb and flow feel to it; nothing stays the same, everything changes, but it always circles and cycles around your entire being. When you have faith in God, in yourself, and live in a positive way, then people, places, things, and situations that enter into your ebb and flow, regardless of what will initially on the surface appear to be negative, will suddenly morph into your greatest strengths. Once that becomes embedded into your mind, then it flows into your heart, and ultimately into your very soul. It is at that point you've achieved one of the greatest accomplishment you can ever have as a human being. The POWER of changing your outside world from within yourself.


June 13, 2010

Charlotte Church - The Prayer (with Josh Groban)


Inspiration/Hope & Two Young Men

Where do I start with this one? Hmmm...in just the past couple of days, I noticed there was a new "fan" on the Gusto page I created on Facebook, a young man who lived right next door to me in Elkhart, KS. I think he's around 17 and his father has a very successful construction business in S.W. Kansas, doing all kinds of work including home and commercial buildings. His mother is a teacher at the local school district and she knew my children well when they lived there in the '05-'06 school year.

For the sake of privacy, I will call this young man "Rex." When I saw that he joined, I sent him a private message on facebook thanking him and this was his reply: "I was just really inspired how you have overcome all of this and even started a website about it! Hope all is well for you."

Two words stand out with that reply: INSPIRED and HOPE. I can't express enough how many times I have heard the word inspired when people have interacted with me over the past two years. It goes back to the very beginning in June 2008 and keeps growing exponentially every day. A good friend here in SoCal I referred to in an earlier post has been telling me for months: "Gus, people are INSPIRED by not just your story but the way you tell it. This is your calling. People NEED inspiration in their lives these days."

The other one of course is hope. Without hope, we're lost. There's so many words, things, possessions, things we value that stand out in our lives but without some measure of hope embedded deep in our conscious, there really isn't any point in living. It reminds me of the final time I went back to the half-way house in Liberal, Kansas in early March of this year shortly before I left Kansas for California. I went there to attend the weekly AA meeting held every Friday night at the house, a goodbye if you will and since the meetings are "open", I thought it only fitting to do so. There were only 6 or 7 people there at the time, including the house manager. One of the guys that was present was one that lived there in November 2008 when I was there. He saw me come in and said "Gus, great to see you! Are you going to talk tonight? You always had such great things to say and I always looked forward to hearing what you had to share."

Later, when the meeting started, the house manager decided it was going to be "stick" night. Stick night is when everyone draws what looks like a tongue depresser from a jar that has one word written on it that each one of us was supposed to talk about and how it applied in their life. I don't recall what mine was but I definitely remember what one young man's was. He was only 20 or so, and I noticed immediately he was a "newbie" there, meaning he just arrived. That "look" that everyone has, one of fear, the deer in the headlight look, as it were. I introduced myself to him before the meeting started and did in fact find out that he had arrived only the day before. He had caught his first DUI. I shared with him very openly my story and I remembered thinking man, this kid needs some HOPE in his life. He seems desperate, lost, and so alone.

But back to the stick. When he pulled his out and announced what his word was, I nearly jumped out of my chair. And then he spoke, very softly, very briefly, and when he ended his short speech I remember him distinctly saying, "All I can do is HOPE." That was his word on his stick and THAT's when I LEAPED out of my chair and began excitedly telling him and everyone there about all the lessons I had learned over months and months. I don't recall everything I said but I remember how INSPIRED I was, the feeling that came over me as I was speaking.....I wasn't just sharing, I was TEACHING.

When I finished I remember looking him in the eyes. His look had changed. He was still fearful but I could see a glint of HOPE in his eyes. And then several people clapped, something that NEVER used to happen when I was there.

My point? I'm not certain but it comes back I think to what my good friend here in SoCal has been telling me for months. "Gus, you have a tremendous amount of knowledge that you need to share with this world. But Elkhart, Kansas isn't the place to do it. You're stagnating there. It's here where your destiny is."

Two young men. One from Elkhart, Kansas, a neighbor who lived right next door to me and knows my story intimately, mostly from my own actions when I lived there from August 2005 until June 2008 and when I came BACK to the scene of the crime, for lack of a better term, in June 2009 to prove to MYSELF first and to those there that I was a much better man than what they had seen before. And a young man in Liberal, Kansas, one who didn't know me from Adam, but needed to hear a message of HOPE.

But now that message of INSPIRATION has returned to Rex in Elkhart, Kansas, compliments of this blog and website. It is my HOPE then, that he will share this message with others, so that others may find some inspiration in their lives, something that they can hope for, a reason to LIVE life as God intended them to be.

I have a feeling that this particular post about Elkhart, Kansas is just the first of more to come in the days and weeks ahead.


June 12, 2010

Living In The Moment

Recently, someone came into my life that asked me to "live in the moment" when we planned our first one-0n-one encounter. Living in the moment is something that goes in line with many of the teaching and lessons I've learned over the years and though I know we all try to practice this principle, it remains difficult, at least for me, to keep from "projecting" future events based on current feelings and emotions.

In one of my earlier posts here on the blog, I referred to a lady counselor at Norton Valley Hope in Norton, KS. I saw only once in September 2006. She was substituting that day for my regular counselor and was the key person who gave me the handwritten note about reading pages 416-417 of the "Big Book" 5 times a day for 5 days and how it would change my life. To refresh those not aware of that post, the basic thrust behind that lesson was the hugely important value of acceptance in our life. Acceptance of persons, places, things, and situations as being exactly the way God intended them to be "at this MOMENT", to accept completely life on life's terms as it is today at this very moment, good OR bad. I remember asking her that day, "what is this business about living one day at a time?" I'll never forget how she helped me to make it clearer then, though I still didn't fully grasp it until much later. She said, "Gus, where are you?" I said, "I'm in Norton, KS." She said, "No, where are you at this moment?" I said, "I'm sitting here talking to you." THEN she said, "Where are your feet?" I said, "Huh? well, one is crossed over one leg and the other is on the floor." She said, "Exactly."

I remember now I sort of looked at her in amazement and I recall briefly understanding what she meant but then later, my personal pastor there, told me something else that helped even more. He said, "Gus, you and I are a lot alike. We like to plan and I've found that living ONE day at a time is waaay too much for me. And I think you're the same way." I said, "What do you mean? Are you saying we shouldn't PLAN for the future? I mean, after all Bob, I've got responsibilities, bills, etc." He said, "No, I'm not suggesting that you NOT plan. You HAVE to. But just don't expect all your plans to work out." After probing him further about this he said, "Let me give you an example. For me, one day is too much, one hour is too much. So, for instance, when I'm crossing the street, I'm crossing the street. I'm not thinking about what I'm going to do when I get there because I may not make it across."

That made a lot more sense to me. And that was nearly 4 years ago. Today, its so much clearer and even though I try to "live in the moment", I'm still one of those that struggles with the concept. However, the person I referred to at the start of this particular post has helped to remind me of the HUGE value of living in the moment, just letting life come to us one moment at a time, because life doesn't offer us ANY guarantees. We're only here for a short time and it is an absolute necessity to keep our minds focused on that way of living. Projecting the future for ourselves, or even others we become involved with personally, like the person I met recently should be handled with trust, care, and most of all, respect. Doing so will therefore afford us the opportunity to learn and grow within ourselves and with others in our lives.

Yesterday's job interview is another prime example of living in the moment. Yes, my meeting in downtown San Diego on the 25th floor of the Emerald Plaza with the senior recruiter for a legal employment placement firm went fantastic and far beyond my wildest imaginations. But is there any guarantee that something will come of it just because of "that moment?" Obviously not. That's why humility is also a key part of the equation in living in the moment and in anything else we do on a day-to-day basis. And it also reminds me of one of my favorite sayings that Rick Warren, pastor of the Saddleback Church, describes about life.

He said, and I'm paraphrasing here so forgive me for not quoting directly: "I used to think life was like a series of hills and valleys. First you go up to the mountaintop then back down before returning the the top once more. I no longer believe that. Rather, life is like a set of railroad tracks, and at all times there's always something good going on in your life and always something bad going on in your life. When life is good, beware, because there's something bad probably coming up the other side of the tracks that's going to bite your ass. And when life is bad, just remember, there's always something you can be thankful for."

The moral of that story? At least to me? Balance, humility, living in the moment, don't project, don't get too "high" when things are good and don't get so "down" when they're not.

So, this new and special person in my life and this stellar job interview? Keep it all in perspective, practice those principles already learned, listen and watch for the signs from God to stay always humble, always ready to learn, to give of yourself to others, ACCEPT life on life's terms as it is today, AT THIS MOMENT.


June 8, 2010

Phil Collins - Father To Son

For my son and ALL sons and fathers. As to my own son, this is our call and our little secret...."Thumbs Up, Seven-Up!"

June 7, 2010

Eagles-love will keep us alive live version

By far, one of my favorite songs, because the lyrics reflect the deepest recesses and feelings of my soul....."I was standing, all alone against the world outside.....lost and lonely, now you've given me will to survive. When we're hungry....love will keep us alive."


I'm not exactly certain where I'm going with this one but it's been on my mind a lot lately for some reason. FEAR. "False Evidence Appearing Real", a term a close family member once told me he thinks the word stands for. For a long time I wasn't sure what he meant because life can be so harsh, so REAL, that fear is something hard for us to let go of.

It can be done. One of the keys in doing so I believe is dropping our walls of pride, ego, and self-doubt about ourselves and others. Think about it. Where ever you go, especially in unfamiliar surroundings with unfamiliar faces, what is it that you do? How do you act? Guarded, right? Unsure. Why? Have you ever stopped to think that EVERYONE else is doing the same thing? Think about some of my earlier posts, the ones about "group dynamics", going into public places such as an elevator, or a grocery store. Everyone goes around as if they're SCARED of one another but the second some one appears outgoing, sincere, and real, what happens? You feel more comfortable, right? Think of a child, put a child's manner and innocence in your mind's eye. How do they act? No pretense, no FEAR, just pure, raw emotion. REAL.

So, what happened to us as adults? I think its a function of many things; feeling we have to act "responsibly" as parents, as employees, the news media and the constant bombardment of negative news. Floods, earthquakes, war, the BP oil spill, the economic collapse, the DESPAIR people feel with the world these days. You know what I say? Don't listen to it! Think and act like a child, not in an immature sense mind you, but take risks, be more out-going, show no FEAR of new things, new ways, new thinking. Getting "outside the lines" with "outside the box" thinking is how I try to focus myself in this new way I've discovered the past couple of years.

It's hard though. Every day is a struggle to overcome those self-doubts, the negative news, the FEAR that seems so prevalent in our world any more. But if everyone would try harder to act, live, feel, and think positively in every aspect of their daily lives and with those around them, think of the possibilities! The mind is a wondrous thing. It starts with me. With you. And then another and another. Before long, the group dynamic will change and our world will begin changing to something more positive, more hopeful, with less FEAR among us. We can do it. We just have to BELIEVE.