(Issue #625) Do We Hold the Key?


I wonder what they might be thinking as they face
the last precious moments of their lives.

~~~~~

Roxie, my canine companion, and I have the honor to make pet therapy rounds at Community Hospice and Palliative Care. As with the other places we visit (here and here, for instance), Roxie brings smiles and starts conversations with every person she meets. Every. One.

I stand to the side and observe, happy to see the joy that a belly rub can bring. (That is, a belly rub for Roxie. The people are on their own when it comes to that. 😊) At the end of our rounds both of us have tired paws and renewed appreciation that comes with being allowed to serve our community.

Our hospice visits have brought the same feelings along with a deeper introspection on my part. We meet patients (nearing the end of their life’s journey) as well as their families and friends. Once again, smiles and conversations occur—sometimes through tears. The patients often talk about dogs they had or have. Happy times. Joyful memories. Other times they speak about hobbies or sports teams. Again, fond remembrances. Love for what they have had and still have in their lives. They thank us for stopping by their rooms for what will probably be the last time we will see them.

And each time I wonder.

~~~~~

Video Recommendation for the Week.

Recorded in 2010, “Love My Life” reflects on looking back–and looking ahead. (The link: https://youtu.be/_GeJKoEHgts) The late Rick “Hurricane” Johnson provided the keyboard for this track. We were fortunate to have his insights in the studio.

~~~~~

I wonder what they might be thinking as they face the remaining precious moments of their lives. What do they see in their mind’s eye? What memories resonate? What do they see as their legacy? What did they not do that, if they had time, they would go after? What did they do that brings a smile to their soul? Would they do anything differently? What lessons did they learn and what advice would they proffer?

I wonder, “What is the story their eyes are telling?”

Do we need to wait until the end of the ride to evaluate the experience? In their way, those eyes that Roxie and I see tell us not to wait. Examine the doors, paths, and choices in front of us, and act.

Last week I rediscovered a song I wrote for my Find Your Happy Place! CD. “Love My Life,” has a young man seeking counsel from an elder.

What do you regret?
If you could do it over
What would you forget?

The old man smiles, shakes his head, and reminds us that life is up to us. There will be regrets and there will be satisfaction. Simply,

Life can be filled with rain
And heartache and pain
Or it can be days of fun
With blue skies and sun
You can be at war with yourself
But don’t blame someone else
Because whatever you believe
That is what will be

Young man you see
It’s you who holds the key
Not as hard as it seems
To live a life of your dreams

So, do we hold the key? If we do, do we use it to open the doors in front of us?

I wonder.

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

~~~~~

Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in Life lessons | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

(Issue #624) NOW is My Time (reprise)


When I spend time in the past and in the future, I miss the present.
I miss what is with me—and will soon become the past.

~~~~~

[NOTE ABOUT THIS POST: Excerpted from my blog post of November 24, 2013. The message holds true seven-and-one-half years later. Maybe with a bit of added imperative.]

A few days before Thanksgiving 2013, as my students approached finals week on campus, I sent an email encouraging them to celebrate what they had accomplished to that point in the semester (their past), what was ahead of them (their future), and asked them to remember what they had become by that point in the semester (their present).

Here is that email’s content. Maybe there is a morsel, a nugget of inspiration for you (your family, your colleagues, your community team) as you begin your day.

Good morning, young scholars!

You have arrived at the homestretch of the semester. Now, you can see what you have accomplished. Congratulate yourself. And get ready to cross the finish line with style and grace!

Here is a quick strategy to keep your energy and passion flowing. Repeat the following aloud: “Now is MY time!”  Say it again. “Now is MY time!”

Yes, you have lots of responsibilities with family, children, work, and/or school. (You must always take care of the NON-NEGOTIABLE priorities in your life.)  And at times you might even feel like quitting. Remember that each day brings you closer to your dreams—but only if YOU continue to move toward your dreams. This is your time…what will you do with it?

I look forward to a wonderfully energizing end of the semester. And remember to say—and mean it—and be it: “Now is MY time!”

Photo (c) by Steve Piscitelli

My inspiration for that letter came to me from a Deepak Chopra meditation session. His centering thought: Now is my time!

Chopra reminds me that constantly focusing on the result will cause me to miss the journey.

Speaking as someone who is very goal driven, I realize I spend far too much of my life either focused on what I have no control over (the past) or that which has yet to transpire (the future). When I spend time in the past and in the future, I miss the present. I miss what is with me—and will soon become the past. And when I ruminate on making the future better—again I miss the present. Do you see the endless self-defeating cycle?

Now is truly all we are sure of at any time. What are we doing with our Now.

As you prepare for your week ahead, embrace today. Tomorrow today will be yesterday. Now really is the time. How will you embrace and nurture it?


Video recommendations for the week:

Video #1. How a heart-felt hug can accentuate the present. Caution: The music in this video might bring a tear to your eye.

Video #2. Watch the beginning when a little girl steps forward and places a coin in the hat. The action created the now that continues to build into a powerful experience.


Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019, print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in present-mindedness | Tagged , | Leave a comment

(Issue #623) What Have We Learned in 12 Years?


NOTE ABOUT THIS POST: This week I have a repost with a twist. The post below (Issue #1 on this blog) went live on May 31, 2010. At the time, SOCIAL MEDIA was a bit of a new hot topic for the classroom. How to use it? What platforms to use? With whom? When? As you read this 12-year-old post today, it may bring a chuckle or headshake. After each of the bullet points/learning points from 2010, I posted my thoughts from 2022. I’d appreciate your considered reflections as well.

We have come along way—or have we? 😊

~~~~~

Here’s the 2010 post:

I am in Austin, Texas presenting at the NISOD conference. Yesterday I had the good fortune to facilitate an all-day pre-conference institute with Robb Sherfield (author of Cornerstone) and Amy Baldwin (author of The Community College Experience). One of the topics we discussed was how to use social media for motivation and engagement in the classroom. This was (probably) the 6th or 7th time we have worked with this topic in a workshop setting. This morning, I did a solo session titled “The Dot Commies Are Comin’ The Dot Commies Are Here!” Again, this was about social media in the classroom. No matter where in the country we facilitate this workshop, there are a few recurring points:

  • 2010: NO matter who your audience may be, when using social media KNOW why you are using it. In other words, don’t use it to be cute. Use it with a purpose. Match your strategy to the goal. This holds true for the classroom or the boardroom.
    • 2022 Reflection: How many presentations have you been through that could qualify for death by PowerPoint? Or Dizzy from video and graphics? And then you walk out of the room and say, That was the longest hour of my life! Have you found the message to get lost in the medium—or has the medium enhanced the message?
  • 2010: People are interested in SKYPE. The ability to video conference (two people) computer to computer for FREE and with decent quality is attractive. Audio conferencing with more than twenty people at a time is also available. One participant yesterday was excited about the prospect of using this technology to connect with students on various campuses.
    • 2022 Reflection: Wow, we have come a ways, haven’t we? How many Zoom meetings have you attended in the last twenty-four months? Or even in the last week? Connecting with students (colleagues and family, too) can be done in so many ways. Have you found this a positive or a challenge?
  • 2010: Digital video cameras allow you to develop quick (and high quality) learning objects for students, staff, community groups, and the like.
    • 2022 Reflection: My first thought went to the ever-present phone in ever-ready hand to snap whatever, whenever, and for whatever purpose. For the teachers reading this, has this been an enhancement or a distraction? How about outside of the classroom?
  • 2010: No matter how good the technology is there are bound to be glitches. Recognize that, accept that, and plan for it. BUT do not avoid social media and technology because there MIGHT be a glitch.
    • 2022 Reflection: Glitches exist. Like twelve years ago, it’s part of the process. Have you found faster Internet speeds helpful as well as the increasingly sophisticated platforms?
  • 2010: As a teacher it is my responsibility to let my students know this technology exists. They can choose to use it or not…but they need to know it is there. And it is not going away! Which leads to my last point…
    • 2022 Reflection: Truth. It did not go away. Do you see a time when social media goes away? See below.
  • 2010: As Eric Qualman points out in his book Socialnomics, social media is not a fad. It is not going away. We should do what we can to help shape the discussion about appropriate uses of the technology for teaching and learning. Again, this is important for the classroom and the boardroom.
    • 2022 Reflection: Truth (again). Social media has not gone away. Is there a conversation to be had about social media’s presence and influence or does it have a life of its own?

I welcome your thoughts on the best way to use social media to connect in education—and in the corporate and community spheres.

~~~~~

Video Recommendation for the Week.

Watch this cool video: “Most Popular Social Media Platforms: 1997-2020.” So many platforms about which I did not know. Which ones have you used? For grins, look at the platforms that pop up in 2004, 2016, and 2018. Have fun.

~~~~~

Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in Communication | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

(Issue #622) A Functioning Community is More than a Zip Code


Consider your community’s assets and needs. Consider the interlocking nature of the people, place, and purpose your community attempts to serve.

~~~~~

A community may be viewed as a point on the map—yet it is more than just a place on a map.

A community may be measured by its latest census count—yet is more than just the number of people.

A community may be known for a function it serves—yet it exists for more than just that purpose.

A community is all three. A functioning community brings together people, place, and purpose.

Richard Leider pointed out in The Power of Purpose that life is good when we can manage to have the Three Ps of our lives align with one another: People, Place, and Purpose. His book with David Shapiro, Repacking Your Bags states the good life is “living in the place you belong, with the people you love, doing the right work, on purpose.” 

Those three Ps, also, help us understand interlocking issues affecting a community’s health and wellbeing.

My latest community service sees me sitting on a council examining such topics with our ultimate responsibility to offer recommendations for further exploration and action as needed. As my fellow council members and I examined the initial list of potential topics, Leider and Shapiro’s work came to my mind.

No matter what topic is addressed, the intersection of the Three Ps is evident. For instance, when learning about community assets that address “Senior Programming,” we heard about

  • Housing
  • Food insecurity 
  • Transportation
  • Resource Centers
  • Health programs
  • Mentoring

Each topic connects with another topic. It is difficult, for example, to focus on mentoring if one doesn’t know when or where the next meal will be—or where the table will be for that meal.

Consider your community’s assets and needs. Consider the interlocking nature of the people, place, and purpose your community attempts to serve. A functioning community is much more than one event, one initiative, or one policy priority.

And it is so much more than a zip code.

~~~~~

Video Recommendation for the Week.

As you hear Richard Leider speak about purpose, consider what a community (your community) can do to help people thrive in the place in which they live.

~~~~~

Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in Life lessons | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

(Issue #621) The Most Boring People in the World?


Has hoping for an authentic question that leads to an authentic conversation that leads to understanding that leads to caring and connection become “old school“?

~~~~~

Ever wonder if it’s you or them? Or both?

For instance, you’re at a social gathering with friends, colleagues, maybe even family. Desiring conversation, you attempt to engage the others with thoughtful and authentic questions. Nothing controversial. Your questions about the others’ experience bring lots of comments.  And then the monologues begin—about their lives, trials, accomplishments, dreams, or disappointments.  Perhaps someone whips out a phone and starts flipping through photos of this, that, and them.

But…

…Not one question asked about your life, trials, accomplishments, dreams, or disappointments.

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

You might think your expectations are too high. Or that you’re boring. Or maybe hoping for an authentic question that leads to an authentic conversation that leads to understanding that leads to caring and connection is old school.

Reminds me of a post I wrote more than four years ago about communication—or the lack thereof. Last week I watched (again) Celeste Headlee’s TED Talk on how to be a better conversationalist. Celeste asks early on in her thought-provoking presentation, if we are “engaged and inspired” or depleted by what is supposed to be a conversation. These ten pointers are important reminders for us. Maybe you can share them, as well. Please view her less-than twelve-minute talk below in the Video Recommendation for the Week section.

Photo (c) Steve Piscitelli
  1. Be present in the moment
    1. You know, listen and care about the person/people in front of you.
  2. Don’t pontificate—assume you have something to learn
    1. I’m sure you have wonderfully instructive e experiences to share. So do the people in front of you.
  3. Everyone you ever meet knows something you don’t
    1. But you won’t know it if you don’t stop and ask questions and listen.
  4. Use open-ended questions
    1. And keep them coming. See #1 and #3 above.
  5. Go with the flow
    1. Don’t be scripted with banal questions. Think about the people in front of you and ask questions that recognize and respect their stories.
  6. Don’t equate your experience with theirs…this is not about you
    1. I’ve written about this before. Probably not the time for comparatory suffering or achievement.
  7. Try not to repeat yourself
    1. See #1-#6.
  8. Stay out of the weeds
    1. Yes, I want to hear about your story…but two hours later, let me come up for a breath of air.
  9. Listen
    1. Communicate. Have a deliberative dialogue.
  10. Be brief…be interested in other people
    1. See the above.

~~~~~

Video Recommendation for the Week.

Celeste Headlee’s TED Talk has more than 12 million views.

~~~~~

Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in conversation, respect | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

(Issue #620) Volunteer and Grow


You give of yourself because the giving makes the act about the other person,
not about you.

~~~~~

One of the organizations for whom Roxie and I volunteer asked me to participate in a video interview about volunteering. Why volunteer for the organization? What drew me to the organization? And so on. The bottom line for all the questions: Why is volunteering important?

Obviously, the act giving service helps the people and communities for whom you volunteer. You contribute a free service (for the most part) that provides needed assistance. You leave another being, hopefully, better than when you arrived on the scene.

You give of yourself because the giving makes the act about the other person, not about you.

When I offer time to my community, I think of giving back and establishing meaningful connections. And the literature supports that. For instance, Western Connecticut State University found that volunteering strengthens and makes a difference for your community and brings people together.  WCSU also found that stepping up to the line promotes personal growth and self-esteem. While volunteering aids the people around you, it benefits the volunteers as well. They learn more about themselves. They volunteered to help others and, concomitantly, they received a benefit. A symbiotic relationship develops.

Young people (think high school and college students) may volunteer to gain experience and build a resume. And in the process, they learn about their communities and continue to understand who they are, what moves them, and what skills they have that their neighbors need.

When we volunteer, we gain personal perspective on how we can inspire, impact, and initiate community.

~~~~~

Video recommendation for the week.

Listen to this moving TEDx talk about the importance of volunteerism for a community.

~~~~~

Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in Community, community service, volunteering | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

(Issue #619) Turtles, Giraffes, and Roosters


For what and/or for whom are you ready to crow about this coming week?

~~~~~

We’ve all heard the idiom to stick your neck out. It is used when you embark on an endeavor that entails a level of risk to yourself. When you expose your neck you take the chance of failure, ridicule, and setback. At the same time, that extended neck can be the impetus for success, acclaim, and progress. Keeping the neck in the same place (the safe place?) may reduce risk as well as chances for success.

While we might consider sticking out our neck to be about us, it can also be about someone else. For instance, when we speak in support of a marginalized person or group, we face consequences for what we have said or done.

The animal world helps us humans visualize this risk-taking activity. (Of course, chickens and turkeys might take exception as sticking their necks out probably involves a chopping block.)

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

Think of the turtles having to stick their necks out to move forward. If they keep their heads safely tucked inside the shell, it is protected but at the expense of forward progress. Danger passes, out comes the neck. Progress delayed.

Same for larger animals. Consider this quote attributed to Sid Waddell.

“Well as the giraffes say, you don’t get no leaves if you don’t stick your neck out.”

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

And for animals in between. While reading The Ultimate Book of Useless Information, I noted a risk-taking move associated with barnyard beings.

“Roosters cannot crow if they are not able to fully extend their necks.”

Roosters are known to crow as a method to stake out their territory. Yet the image of the extended neck provides an apt metaphor for putting ourselves out there. We make sure people see and hear us.

For what and/or for whom are you ready to crow about this coming week?

~~~~~

Video recommendation for the week.

When we stick our necks out, we (probably) have thought about what we are doing (even if for a moment or two) and believe it is worth the risk.

Buffalo Springfield asked us to consider For What It’s Worth (released in 1966).

~~~~~

Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in risk-taking | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

(Issue #618) Getting There, Not Being There


On the way to being there what do we miss along the path of getting there.

~~~~~


In his book No Time Like the Future: An Optimist Considers Mortality, Michael J. Fox helps us understand his journey with Parkinson’s Disease (PD). Along the way, he ends up teaching us about living a mindful life.

For instance, during one of his physical therapy sessions to strengthen and stabilize his gait, Fox had the revelation that,

“The key to walking to the other side of the room is not being there but getting there.”

In other words, don’t get ahead of yourself.

I dogeared the page.

How many times have I lost touch with what was in front of me because I was two thoughts beyond my reach or two street blocks ahead of my walk or two months ahead into my future? (Too many times.)  Or I move so fast I miss the beauty right in front of me? (Like when I almost missed the bunny and the deer in Boulder.)

For instance, the other night Laurie asked me a question while I was setting my glass down. Rather than focus on where I placed the glass, I turned my attention to answering the question. Result: Glass tumbled to the floor–breakage and spillage. And no answer for the question.

Roxie wrote of this in her Story #25 (“Focus on the Present”) in her book.

“Steve always seems to be focused on where he is going; where he needs to be; or what he needs to get done…Steve’s focus on our walks is often where we are going. He wants to arrive…get around…and return…He misses so much along the way.”

Smart canine.

We can lose sight of the present moment when we focus narrowly on the future.

One might say, “OK. But don’t we have to, at some point, consider being there? Don’t we have to focus on the goal in order to reach the goal?

True, we need to focus on our goals—and they are in the future. The question that still presents itself is “When is at some point? Can’t we still enjoy the steps along the way—the people, the experiences, the bright spots, and not-so-bright spots?

Fox (and Roxie) talk about how we need to move our attention to the steps in front of us on the way to the destination. When we don’t, what do we miss? Consider this final example.

Roxie and I walk three blocks to the ocean each morning. I consider what the sunrise holds for us when we arrive on the sand. I see us being there on the beach. One day, I decided to stop focusing on being at the beach and appreciate what we pass by getting there. To help me adjust my mindset, I asked myself, “How many palm trees do I think we pass on the way to the beach?” Keep in mind that I had been making this walk for a few decades. “Oh, probably 30 or 40. Maybe 50,” I thought.

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

Wrong. One house alone has nearly 30 palm trees. The total number within the three-block stretch: over 200. Experiences I mindlessly passed each day. Beauty taken for granted. And that is only one of many on that short route.

How many experiences are you missing on your journey?

On the way to being there what do we miss along the path of getting there.

~~~~~

Video recommendation for the week.

One of my favorite sunrise videos. Enjoying the paddle by taking a break from the paddle. Don’t miss the pod of dolphin that suddenly appear! Sometimes the getting there becomes the being there.

~~~~~

Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in Mindfulness, present-mindedness | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

(Issue #617) Appreciating in Front of Me


Too often we become distracted about what will be or what has been,
at the expense of what is now.
~~~~~

Posts on this blog have addressed the power of staycations. (Like here and here.) And before “virtual” became synonymous with workplace and community meetings, I had written an article for the Florida Times-Union (August 22, 1998; appeared in the Shorelines section of the paper) about how a virtual vacation can help us appreciate what we have in front of us.

You can tell the above article was written 24 years ago. Just look at all that dark hair!

Last week, Laurie and I checked out (and checked in) for another staycation. We threw our backpacks over our shoulders and walked southward on the beach. In fifteen minutes, we arrived at our location. No valet. No lines. No lost baggage. No delays. Just smiles, ocean breezes, and sunshine.

Later that evening, while enjoying a relaxing dinner at one of the Beaches Town Center restaurants, we both noted how we did feel as though we were on vacation. Less than a mile from our home.

For those who follow my Instagram posts, you know I start most of my days appreciating the sun rising over the ocean. A mantra has evolved for me:

Rising Sun
Soothing Sand
Rolling Waves
Comfort Where I Stand

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

Too often we become distracted about what will be or what has been, at the expense of what is now. Dings, beeps, chimes, and earbuds draw our attention from what is in front of us.

The latest “stayca” reminded me (again) to appreciate what is in front of me. Now.

A home for thought, heart, and peace.

~~~~~

Video recommendation for the week.

In the words of Jimmy Buffett,

The days drift by, they have no names.
None of the streets here look the same.
There are so many quiet places
And smiling eyes to match the smiling faces.
I have found me a home. I have found me a home.
You can take the rest of everything I own.
Because I have found me a home.

~~~~~

Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in Appreciation, home, present-mindedness | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

(Issue #616) Create a Call-In Culture


On the way to clarity, we establish connections, and we enhance chances to establish
a “Call-In Culture.”

~~~~~

A previous post on this blog stated,

While simple dichotomies may be deceptively simplistic, they can provide a starting point for conversation and movement. Each day we can provide light or darkness. We provide direction or obfuscation. With every decision and interaction, we can choose various paths.

We can choose various paths.

Like making the choice between a call-out or a call-in. Times, people, and situations present themselves when a call-out­ might be needed; when no other way seems appropriate to the circumstance. But where does one draw the line? When might what seems appropriate be inappropriate? When is the call-out an excuse to belittle, ridicule, and demean someone with whom we disagree? Rather than discuss (and maybe learn), we degrade and yell.

Photo (c) by Steve Piscitelli

A call-in provides another option—another path. Consider it a reach-out. When we reach out to someone with a differing opinion, we seek conversation. Deliberative dialogues force us to listen, question (authentically), share, and, maybe, adjust our focus.

Perhaps our curiosity will help us gain clarity. On the way to clarity, we establish connections, and we enhance chances to establish a Call-In Culture.

The Greater Good MagazineMarch 2022 Happiness Calendar” reminds us to stay open and curious.

Finally, in a quote attributed to Jesse Jackson, “We must turn to each other and not on each other.

Reach out. Call in. Connect.

~~~~~

Video recommendation for the week.

Reaching out can happened in various environments. Like a school cafeteria or a community meeting.

~~~~~

Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Posted in Life lessons | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment