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Essentials, Happiness, and Eternal Youth

Essentials, Happiness, and Eternal Youth

Good Morning from Prince Edward Island,
Put the kettle on, let’s have a cuppa and a chat.
While driving home from Halifax yesterday, I was getting a bit concerned the bridge may close to all vehicles due to high winds. Fortunately it wasn’t closed to cars, unfortunately, it was for the truckers. I always feel for them, they only make a living when the wheels are rolling.
While on the bridge, I noticed the extreme winds made for extreme beauty.
Walking near the base of the bridge brought a sense of adventure and touch of happiness.
Has anyone seen the blog or read books by Gretchen Rubin?
Among her number of NY Times bestsellers, she has written The Happiness Project, as well as the Four Tendencies.
She discovered that people fit into Four Tendencies: Upholders, Questioners, Obligers, and Rebels. Our Tendency shapes every aspect of our behaviour, so understanding this framework lets us make better decisions, meet deadlines, suffer less stress and burnout, and engage more effectively.
Here is a summary of the four.
  • Obligers meet outer expectations, but struggle to meet expectations they impose on themselves
  • Questioners question all expectations; they’ll meet an expectation if they think it makes sense--essentially, they make all expectations into inner expectations
  • Upholders respond readily to outer and inner expectation
  • Rebels resist all expectations, outer and inner alike
I recently took her simple quiz. It determined that I am a Questioner. I am ok with that. 
Have fun, take the quiz here:
Let me know in the comment section which one you are. 
It is an interesting perspective. It may bring some self-awareness for you. Might kick self-doubt to the curb and better yet, allow self-acceptance in the driveway.
Most of us have two lives. The life we live, and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands Resistance. ~ Stephen Pressfield
We are heading into a time of year where there is a lot of external noise-causing internal stress for many.
Thanksgiving (Canada), Halloween, Thanksgiving (US), Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas and then New Years
Anyone wishing to move less stressfully through this time of year? Keep reminding ourselves of what is important. The essentials as it were.
One of my favourite non-fiction books of all time is Essentialism by Greg Mckeown and a couple of quotes by him follows.
Only once you give yourself permission to stop trying to do it all, to stop saying yes to everyone, can you make your highest contribution towards the things that really matter. ~ Greg Mckeown
The way of the Essentialist means living by design, not by default. Instead of making choices reactively, the Essentialist deliberately distinguishes the vital few from the trivial many, eliminates the nonessentials, and then removes obstacles so the essential things have a clear, smooth passage. In other words, Essentialism is a disciplined, systematic approach for determining where our highest point of contribution lies, then making the execution of those things almost effortless. ~ Greg Mckeown
As we move through this time of year or any time of year, best ask ourselves how can I not contribute to the stress of others but help those who are stressed?
We all have a role to play in shaping today’s world. Positively shape the small one of family, friends, community and the larger benefits.
In Shawn Achor’s book, The Big Potential he wrote, “our society has become overly focused on the “power of one alone” versus “the power of one made stronger by others.”
Reid Hoffman, the co-founder and chairman of LinkedIn, sums it up well: “No matter how brilliant your mind or strategy if you’re playing a solo game, you’ll always lose out to a team.” Steve Jobs, the late founder and CEO of one of the most competitive and powerful companies ever built, said, “Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people.” Navy SEALs during training sometimes link arms when they do push-ups to promote going through stress “together,” rather than in isolation. And the SEALs have a great saying: “Individuals play the game, but teams beat the odds.”
Before signing off, I want to thank all our seasonal staff for the team play this year. We have officially finished our “visitor season” as Monday’s ship, the last, has cancelled. To all reading this and have visited in the past, I hope we served you well and we look forward to doing it again.
The mail-order team is busy this weekend. We remove all the tables and chairs from the dining room. Set up shelving and conveyor belts in preparation for the gift-giving season. We hope we can serve you this holiday season as well.
Have a wonderful weekend and thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog. Your comments encourage a non-writer to dapple with the writing thing.
Today, I have been listening to and enjoying the musical talents of Arcadi Volodos.
Editors Notes: Is there another pianist alive today who can draw as ravishing and broad a range of colours from his instrument as Volodos? As piano-playing goes, he is in a class of its own: exquisitely controlled, every single note placed perfectly, every phrase lovingly shaped. Schubert’s penultimate piano sonata responds to Volodos’ masterly touch by offering up its beauties so effortlessly—the technical difficulties hardly register under this pianist’s fingers and he achieves an eloquence that is simply jaw-dropping. The choice of the three minuets is very clever, as they all seem to be cut from the same cloth. A magnificent release.
With love from Prince Edward Island,
The police recently arrested a man selling "secret formula" tablets he claimed gave eternal youth.
When going through their files they noticed it was the fifth time he was caught for committing this same criminal medical fraud.
He had earlier been arrested in 1794, 1856, 1928 and 1983....
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Joanne Leger - November 4, 2019

I took the quiz – not surprise – Obliger.

Cindy - November 4, 2019

I am an obliger. Never really thought about it before but it sure explains
some things!! Thanks for the visit!!

Happy Holidays

Professor Earl W Hulihan - November 3, 2019

Thank you Bruce for your measured insights each month, and especially Volodos. I added a Playlist. With 14 of his CD’s…., I fill a void for listening during my clinical study evaluations. How are you and Shirley post Europe? Might you try, as special monthly jams, solo jams such as “Apple Butter”, Peach”, “Blueberry” and others.
How has the Respite Centre doing?

As always, love from Donna and Earl

Lynne Powell - November 3, 2019

I’m an obliger—reading the more in depth explanation that came after the quiz—I have to agree with the assessment. So would I, or should I change? That is clearly something to ponder!

Susan - November 2, 2019

Thank you for the blog from this “Obliger”.
Looking forward to placing my Christmas order for your unique PEI products.
All the best,
Woodbridge, ON

Susan E-J - November 2, 2019

Always a pleasure to have a virtual ‘visit’ with you on weekend mornings Bruce, and to think about our beloved Island…. The reflections on wisdom found in Gretchin Ruben’s work were of particular interest today – I plan to take the Quiz and revisit her writing this afternoon. Loved the parting joke this morning too – thanks for being there for us every Saturday, Bruce! :)
Kawartha Lakes, ON

Kay & Mikel Stevenson - November 2, 2019

We did get into the quiz — went in through Google. Kay Obligator. Mikel Questioner.
It might be interesting to take the quiz for each other!

Linda Lowther - November 2, 2019

Another questioner here… You are likely not surprised! Hope all goes well with your big shipping season!

Kay stevenson - November 2, 2019

As always, Mikel and I find your blog such a refreshing start to our Saturday morning. Thank you! Regarding Gretchen Rubin’s quiz…
from your comments it appears I am a “questioner”…but the link won’t open just now for either of us so will try again later.
Warm and rich blessings to you and your family and staff.
Kay & Mikel
Spokane, WA

Bill - November 2, 2019

Lots of wisdom in your blog Bruce.
I remember buying what that guy selling youth medicine was pushing, in the eighties, never could open the bottle 😀😁😀

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