Forward thinking: Avoiding regrets in 2018

I began working on my 2018 goals in early December. In retrospect, it seems like the time lapse was a lot longer than a little over a month… but the final days of 2017 were quite full and overflowing. You might be working on your list of goals for the New Year or perhaps you…

Forward thinking: Helpful insights for 2018

I’m excited about what 2018 may bring! How about you? Most of us have an idea about areas where we would like to improve. At the beginning of the year, those ideas sometimes turn into resolutions, goals or intentions — at the very least. I for one am a big believer in making “intentions.” However,…

Forward thinking: Living like royalty

Crowns and scepters. Thrones and palaces. Rulership and riches. These are the words we associate with medieval royalty. Celebrity and ceremony. Elegance and style. Popularity and paparazzi. These are the words we associate with modern royalty. Tattered cloth and shepherd’s staffs. A stable and manger. Humility and servanthood. These are the words we associate with…

Forward thinking: Paying it forward

Giving. Generosity. When you hear these two words, what comes to mind? Unfortunately most of us think in terms of “financial donations” especially this time of year. The truth is we all have far more to offer than money. For example, we can give people access to our personal network, or leverage our influence to…

Forward thinking: Enriched by giving

Her name was Mary… When she crossed the pathway of my life, Mary was working as server at a truck stop in a relatively small community. She was a senior-aged widow and had been for several years. I later learned that she and her husband had no children. At the time of our acquaintance, I…

Forward thinking: A tradition of Thanksgiving

Our Nation has inherited a long, rich tradition of thanking God for His blessings – more so than most of us realize. In 1541 Spanish explorer Francisco Vasquez de Coronado and his men conducted a service of thanksgiving for the abundant food and water they found along the Palo Duro Canyon in the Texas Panhandle….

Forward thinking: Maximizing today

Are you maximizing today? In a few short weeks, I will turn 75… the mid-point of another decade. As I rapidly approach the cusp of a new year, one of the areas where I’m working on being more intentional is in my daily reflection. The older I get, the greater level of accountability I feel…

Forward thinking: Thank you, veterans

As a kid, I remember celebrating Veterans Day… I was born and raised in a small town. There would be parades, speeches and going to the local cemetery where small flags were put on each grave. It was a solemn time because my family and friends had many veterans among them. As I grow older,…

Forward thinking: Ideas matter–especially from leaders

The time is here. The 2017 General Election is upon us. Your ballots are due by 8 p.m. on Nov. 7. While it is debatable which of the local candidates offers stronger ideas for the future, one thing is becoming more certain: people expect elected leaders to put forth powerful ideas before entrusting them with…

Forward thinking: The best and worst of pride

Does the word “pride” strike you as positive or negative? There are certainly many types of positive pride. For example, it’s good to “take pride in our work.” We like it when someone tells us, “I’m proud of you.” And nearly everyone wants to live in a neighborhood where people display “pride of ownership.” All…

Forward thinking: Leadership needed

It happens every election… We elect people to public office who have never served before. In some cases, these new officials bring unseasoned appointees to run agencies or serve as staff aides. New people bring the eternal hope of new ideas and new direction. “By the people, for the people” is a cherished prescription for…

Forward thinking: Influence in motion

Did you ever stop and reflect on your ability to positively influence those around you? My guess is that most of us have not. Nevertheless, I have recently been challenged to make the most of my influence while in motion – like when I am on the go throughout the day doing whatever I am…

Forward thinking: Overcoming our fears

Fear is universal. It crosses all boundaries of gender, race, culture, religion and generation. We all feel and experience fear. So, why do some people appear to be fearless, doing battle with enemies that others cower before? Years ago, I was pondering that very issue in the presence of one of my mentors. And my…

Forward thinking: Starting over… again and again

His name was Dr. J. George Taylerson… He was one of several mentors that crossed the pathway of my life while I was in graduate school. From the first time I met him, I was immediately impressed with his wisdom and insights on life and living. Over time we developed a habit of meeting at…

Forward thinking: Credible communciation

Election Day 2017 is rapidly approaching. In the City of Lynnwood, there are three council seats and a mayoral race to be determined. If you are a resident of our fair city, you have undoubtedly seen the so-called “yard signs” for the various candidates on virtually every street corner. Having personally served on the Lynnwood…

Forward thinking: Be honest with me

Confrontation. It is something that most of us shy away from — especially if it involves co-workers, loved ones and close friends. Sometimes it involves you being the one conveying bad news to another. That is bad enough in itself. What is worse is when you are on the hot seat, and you know the…

Forward thinking: Constitution Day and Citizenship Day

It was Sept. 17, 1787… The First Constitutional Convention was wrapping up in Philadelphia. The hundred day debate had finally come to an end. It had been a grueling process. The delegates each took their turn signing the document that would forever change our fledgling nation – The Constitution of the United States of America….

Forward thinking: The all-important question — why?

As a young kid growing up, I use to follow my father around at his bakery. When he would do a particular thing — regardless of what it was — I would invariably ask him “why” he did whatever he was doing. Quite honestly he told me to stop asking so many questions countless times….

Forward thinking: A need for humility

Back in the dark ages, when I was in high school, I took three years of Latin. I recall two things about studying that dead language. First, my teacher had taught my mother the same language years before – she truly was an old maid school teacher. Second, I learned that 52 percent of the…

Forward thinking: Growing to your full potential

Think with me for just a moment… Did you ever know someone who was especially good at something? Perhaps he/she was an outstanding singer. Or perhaps that person had a unique ability to get others to talk about themselves. Let’s stop there for a moment. Have you ever known someone who should’ve risen to the…

Forward thinking: A can-do attitude

Over the years, automotive tycoon Henry Ford became well known for his insightful comments about life. One in particular stands out in my mind. Mr. Ford is credited with the observation that, “If you think you can, you can. If you think you can’t, you are right again–you won’t be able to.” I have found…

Forward thinking: Hitting the wall

I sat listening intently to my friend… He uttered the words, “I will never forget the experience of being fired. I was thirty-six years old, with a wife and two small children.” After taking a deep breath, he continued. “After telling my wife, we sat on the bed, cried a little, and realized there was…

Forward thinking: Helping people feel good

It’s a Wonderful Life. Such is the name of one of the greatest Christmas movie classics ever made. It tells a beautiful story about the priceless value of relationships. I must have watched it two dozen times over my life time. The story follows the life of one George Bailey who sacrificed his dreams to…

Forward thinking: The challenge of change

I greatly enjoy reading biographies and autobiographies. Several years ago, I found myself reading about Henry Ford, the automotive tycoon in the United States. On his way to dominating the automotive market with the Model T, Henry Ford embodied innovation and progress. By pioneering the assembly line, Ford slashed the amount of time needed to…

Forward thinking: The bookends of success

I am not a NASCAR fan. I never have been and probably never will be at my age. I would be hard pressed to tell you the names of the various races and their locations. I could not tell you the names of more than a few of the drivers and not a single race…