Happy New Year to You and Yours!

Once again, 2010 was a wonderful year for our family.  I don’t know why.  Perhaps one reason is because “Hope” is my favorite advent candle.  As we emerge from the longest night, the winter solstice, and the holidays, it seems timely to think about how we choose to say, or do, or react to stimulus.

Consider these facts:

–          There is currently more global peace, per capita, than at any time in the recorded history of mankind.

–          More people have more physical needs, for food and shelter and clean water, than at any time in recorded history.  Preventable illnesses like polio are nearly eradicated.

–          More information is available to more people than at any time.  Over 3 billion of our 6.5 billion people have access to the internet.  Literacy rates per capita have never been higher.

–          The ancient need for free expression of ideas has enabled more oppressed people than ever to voice their needs using technology.  That trend has led to changes in microeconomics, democracy, social and racial equality, global distribution of products and services, social marketing, interpersonal connections… and will lead to more changes.

–          We know the ingredients for a successful life include a healthy diet, regular exercise, connection with others, purposeful work, autonomy, free choice.

So, how do I/you choose to be a hopeful American?  Here are some of my recent favorites:

– for almost any uplifting subject and global commentary

– for PBS documentaries such as Dr. Andrew Weil’s “Healthy Aging”

– for a focus on your top strengths and how to implement them at work and in life

–          Any financial literacy website, or authors such as Dave Ramsey or Suze Orman

–          Drive, by Daniel Pink, explores how business is catching up with science to drive self-directed thinking and motivation and suggest future work patterns

–          The Alchemist, by Paulo Coelho, reminds me how our Personal Legend can lead to vast wealth

–          Mojo, by Marshall Goldsmith, provides a framework for changes in inertia

Perhaps, if there is a common thread among these favorites, it may be that I choose to be Hopeful.  And keep my head down, while persisting on a long, slow run

What is my wish for you?  That 2011 may be all that you desire!

In peace,
Doug Gray, PCC